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Make a bootable Windows 2000 cd with Service Packs integrated into it.

The creation of this page was inspired by www.bink.nu 

Table of Content:

You can integrate the Service Pack in the original installation folder (i386). 
The next time you install Windows 2000 on a pc the service pack will have been pre-installed.
Updating the Windows installation with a Service Pack is called slipstreaming it.

You will need

Creating the Win 2000 CD files

1. Make two folders on your HD, ie. on D:
D:\ cd-root 
1a. copy all files from the Win 2000 CD to the cd-root folder, especially the "i386" folder
1b. copy the SP3 file to the w2kSP3 folder 
NOTE: Make sure the Service Pack and Win 2000 CD has corresponding languages
2. Unpack the Service Pack file using the command:  w2ksp3.exe -x
3. Then slipstream SP3 into cd-root folder, using the Update command in the service pack
D:\win2kSP3\i386\UPDATE\UPDATE.EXE -S:D:\CD-root
Note: you should NOT point all the way to D:\cd-root\i386
 4. Check that the correct identifier files are in the cd-root folder, see comments about boot files below.     
Usually this is automatically correct, as two of the files come from the original cd, and the slipstream process copies the third file.
Never the less you need to check that they are all there!

Example: on a Win2000 Pro cd these three files should now be in the cd-root folder

  • CDROM_NT.5 
  • CDROM_IP.5 

If you put more or less of the identifier files in the root of the cd, then booting will fail!! Now you have been warned. 
Make sure to check this detail. See examples for Win2000 Server cd below

5. You can now update the support tools and the deployment tools
The files SP3SupportTools.exe and SP3DeployTools.exe are self extracting and automatically installing files. 
I used WinZip to open the .exe files and extract the contents to a Temp folder, then copied the files to the cd-root/Support/Tools folder
6.  I also make an EXTRA folder for updated files like DirextX, IE6, Media Viewer, Free firewall software etc.
See a suggestion list of Extra files below.  

To make space more Extra Files, you can delete files in these folders:

3rd party tools etc.
discovering Win2000
upgrade files
make floppy disks to boot from
informational files
Win2k managing files

Delete the files not the folders

NOTE: do NOT delete any files in the i386 folder.

7. It can be wise to also include the SP3 file itself. 
This way the cd can also be used to update excisting installations. 
Create a seperate folder for this file. Do NOT copy the file/unpacked SP files into the i386 folder.
8. Now you are ready to create the cd.      
See example of using NERO software below.

You should have a folder with files and folders that look something like the picture below. I this picture the cd-root folder has been renamed to w2kUS.


A. You may want or need to tweak some details in single files on your cd.
Further enhancements options

Content of the further enhancements options:

  • A1. Your original cd does not have the i386 folder in the root
  • A2. You want to remove the need to enter an OEM number
  • A3. Automatically use an answer file (like the unattend.txt) even on a boot CD
  • A4. Subsequent unattended installation of IE 6, Media Player and any .msi file

A1.  Your original cd does not have the i386 folder in the root 
If you get the original i386 folder form a cd that is not in the ROOT of the cd, like some MSDN cd's,
you may need to edit the file: i386/txtsetup.sif
Goto section [SetupData], and change the setup source path, it should read: SetupSourcePath = "\".      

A2. Remove the need to enter an OEM number

If you want to remove the need to enter an OEM number,
edit the file i386/setupp.ini


Change the last 3 digits of the Pid number to 270
Now it looks like this:


If this for some reason does not work for you, then simply replace the entire contents of the file of an english installation with


And for a Danish installation the entire content is:



A3.  Automatically using an answer file (like the unattend.txt) even on a boot CD 
A standard Windows installation will ask you a series of questions during the installation, like regional settings, time zone, network details, which accessory programs to install and more.
It is possible to predetermine the choises of these setup details, and have the setup program read the answers automatically from an answer file.

In examples from the deployment information, the answer file is usually called UnAttend.txt. You need to create such an answer file (unattend.txt) and then rename the file to WINNT.SIF
The winnt.sif file must then be placed in the i386 folder. 

(If you place a winnt.sif file on a floppydisk, and put this disk in the floppy drive, at the start of the install process, the winnt.sif file on the floppy disk will take precedence over the winnt.sif file on the cd.)

To create details for the answerfile (winnt.sif / unattend.txt) you can use the Setup Manager application   from the Microsoft® Windows® 2000 Server Resource Kit. The resource kit also has a complete description of all options for the answer file .

NOTE: you need more tags in the answer file than the Setup Manager application creates, in order for the answer file to work as a winnt.sif file located in the i386 folder. 

After this paragraph you will find an answer file that automates everything under the GUI. 
With this answerfile you still need to pick the partition in which to install Windows, at the begining of the setup process.
This answerfile supports the danish keyboard layout, and danish regional settings.      





     FullName="Preferred Customer"
     OrgName="Acme Computers A/S" 






Here is another example of  unattended bootCD and winnt.sif, with english regional settings.
It also has automatic partitioning and details about the network setup.

A4. Silent install (automatic and unattended install) of ie. IE6, Media Player 
or any *.MSI based file
A silent, or unattended, installation is one that presents no user interface.
To run an installation silently, use a command like this in a batch file

MsiExec /I D:\Example.msi /qn

Note: The /q option specifies the "level" of user interface to display, and the n specifies that no interface should be displayed. Msiexec.exe is located in the system32 folder on Windows 2000 and XP.

(local version of CommandLine options)

You can find more information here:
Microsoft - About Windows Installer
Microsoft - Installer - Command Line Options
InstallShield - Windows Installer Edition
HOWTO: Creating a Silent Installation 

B. Trouble shooting


Boot Files.

CD bootsector 
NT5 CD Identifier file 
Professional CD Identifier file 
Server CD Identifier file 
Advanced Server CD Identifier File
Datacenter CD Identifier File 
Service Pack1 CD Identifier File 
Service Pack2 CD Identifier File 
Service Pack3 CD Identifier File 

The slipstream process will usually leave the necessary files in the cd-root folder.

On a Win2000 Pro cd these three files should now be in the cd-root folder

On a Win2000 Server cd these three files should now be in the cd-root folder

On a Win2000 Advanced Server cd these three files should now be in the cd-root folder

NOTE: if these three files are NOT in your cd-root folder, your installation will fail.

Extra Files

Now it's the time to add extra files like drivers and setupfiles of IE6, Media Player 7.1. This way you fill up your CD with the software you want!
I put in in a folder named Extra, but you can name it anything you want.

The extra software won't install by it self you need to use unattended scripts (winnt.sif) to auto install this software.

Creating the CD using NERO software

- Start NERO in full version (not express) and 
- click New then 
- select CD-rom (Boot)

In this window you do the following:
- point to the w2kboot.bin file
- choose No Emulation and
- type 4, in Number of loaded sectors

Now select the ISO tab

Just make sure you have choosen everything as in the picture
- Name length:  ISO level 2
- Format:  Mode 1
- Character set:  DOS    (otherwise ~ will be converted to _ and installation will fail)
- Joliet
- Relax All ISO restrictions, especially "Do not add ';1' ISO file version extension

Now drag all the files from the cd-root folder to the ISO1 window. 

And you are ready to burn. 
Select  File and Write CD

Make sure to choose Disc-At-Once

Now press Write

ADVICE: Start your test on CD-RW if possible. The reasons being:
  • even though these instructions have been tested and work well on my system, something might work different on your system, or a setting may trouble you.
  • you may soon find that you will want to update some of the extra files or add hotfix files
Using CD-RW disks you will not find yourself going through new cd's every week.

Once you are comfortable with what is on the cd, you may want to make a CD-R disk, version 1


created 04-05-2003  -  updated 27-07-2006  -   maintained by Per Alvin Frederiksen 


I have used www.bink.nu as the main template for creating the pages about the bootable W2K cd.

The keys to the winnt.sif file comes from the unattend bootable CD description from School of Health Science example 

The following credits are from the www.bink.nu website, as these may also be of interest to you, I have choosen to include all the credits. 

Tip from www.nu2.nu When trying to create a bootable copy of an OS from the MSDN cd's, you'll get an error during install: End User License Agreement (EULA) Not Found. The solution for this is to edit the file i386/txtsetup.sif section [SetupData], and change the setup source path, it should read: SetupSourcePath = "\". (because on the MSDN CD the setup root is not the root directory of the CD).

These instructions are based on instructions made by Doug Kahler on his website during the NT5 beta period in 1999.

John Savill also posted instructions about this subject on NTFAQ may 2000.

Main credits must go to Joseph R. Worrall, he was the first posting instructions in newsgroups which were used to create mentioned websites.

Another great BOOT CD instructions Website by Bart Lagerweij

Get all win2k versions on 1 CD !!!!! See instructions on this site Twinkie's How-to Website

Product-key tip by www.thetechguide.com


Under Extra Files
- example of batch file that auto installs software, after the windows OS installation
- list of extra files

Make example of burning a cd using the demo version of WinCD