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Run Sysprep on an Image (Standard 7 SP1)


Sysprep is a tool that helps you prepare a device for imaging or for end-user delivery. Running Sysprep is necessary a necessary part of many deployment and servicing tasks, such as capturing an image or preparing a device for an end-user. Usually, you will use Sysprep to accomplish the following:

  • Remove device and user-specific information from a deployment with the /generalize option. This is necessary if you plan on imaging a device and redeploying the Windows Embedded Standard 7 instance on multiple devices.
  • Reboot a device in Audit mode. Audit mode allows you to skip the Windows Welcome startup, enabling you to customize or test an image prior to delivering it to an end-user.
  • Reboot a device in Windows Welcome (also known as the Out-of-Box Experience) Windows Welcome allows a user to configure setting such as language, time-zone and logon.
If you are planning on deploying an image to a new device, you must run sysprep /generalize, even if the device has the same hardware configuration. The sysprep /generalize command removes unique information from your Standard 7 installation, which enables you to reuse that image on different devices. The next time you boot the Standard 7 image, the specialize configuration pass runs. During this configuration pass, many components have actions that must be processed when you boot a Standard 7 image on a new computer. Moving or copying a Windows image to a different computer without running sysprep /generalize is not supported.

This guide assumes you have a basic familiarity with Sysprep. For more information, see Sysprep Technical Reference.

  1. On a Standard 7 image, at a command prompt, type the following to use Sysprep to remove all device and user-specific information from the image, and shutdown the device. Once the image restarts, it will start in audit mode.

    sysprep /generalize /audit /shutdown
  2. Alternatively, you can type the following to use Sysprep to remove all device and user-specific information from the image and restart the image in Windows. You will do this, for example, if you wish to deploy the image directly to an end-user without any additional testing or configuration once the image has been redeployed.

    sysprep /generalize /oobe /shutdown
  3. You can now use this image as a reference image that can be deployed to other devices. For information on how to capture this image and redeploy it, see Capture and Mount an Image and Deploying Images.

Before providing a device to an end-user, you should remove all user-specific information from the Standard 7 installation and setup the installation to boot into Windows Welcome so that a user can configure their settings. Type the following to use Sysprep to remove user-specific information and prepare the installation to boot into Windows Welcome.

sysprep /generalize /oobe /shutdown
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