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  1. Introduction
  2. Capabilities
  3. Structure
  4. The Registry
  5. System and Configuration Files
  6. Security
  7. Application Support
  8. Requirements
  9. Installation
  10. Unattended Installation
  11. Booting
  12. Filesystems
  13. Programs
  14. Control Panel
  15. Tool
  16. Commands
  17. Customization
  18. Environment Variables
  19. Printing
  20. Performance
  21. System Services
  22. Permissions
  23. Groups
  24. User Rights and Auditing
  25. User Profiles
  26. Policies
  27. Network Model
  28. Resource Access
  29. Network Browsing
  30. Protocol Support
  31. RAS
  32. Networking
  33. Backups
  34. Events
  35. Error Handling
  36. Diagnostic Tools
  37. Items to Memorize
  38. Terms
  39. Credits

Windows NT Workstation Installation

Possible Device Conflict Types

If a device is not a plug and play device which is configured by the computer's BIOS or the operating system, possible areas of conflict that a new device can cause are:

  • Interrupt request (IRQ)
  • I/O Port addresses
  • Base memory address
  • DMA channel contention.

Install or Upgrade

Upgrade from Win3.1 or Win95 or NT 3.51:

  • To keep the same desktop settings.
  • If it is not necessary to boot the old Windows version.
  • To keep your password files
  • To keep the same start menu and program groups.

There is no guarantee that all settings will be transferred in the upgrade process and results vary from one OS to another. When upgrading Windows 95, NT should be installed to its own directory and NT should be allowed to set up a dual boot configuration.


  • System - Stores system files for booting such as .INI.
  • Boot - WINNT_Root partition where system files are

Custom and Express Setup

Two types of setup:

  • Custom - Used to install NT when the system includes hardware not listed in the HCL. "Confirm that the hardware manufacturer's device driver is included on the manufacturer's device-support disk."
  • Express - Used to install NT when hardware is listed in the HCL.


Disk compression products must not be enabled when installing NT. The Setup program can be used to install NT. It can be run from:

  • Floppy disk.
  • CD-ROM.
  • Shared network directory

The MS-DOS program Winnt.exe is used to get the PC ready for installation. Winnt.exe will make three Setup disks in reverse order. Then the computer must be booted with setup disk 1 in drive A to begin the installation.

Winnt and Winnt32.exe

Winnt is used to install NT on computers running 16 bit operating systems such as DOS, Windows3.x, or even Windows 95. Winnt32 is used to install NT when running an NT system such as NT workstation. The Winnt32 syntax is :

"Winnt or Winnt32 [/s:sourcepath] [/I:inf_file] [/t:drive_letter] [/x] [/b] [/o[x]] [/u:answer_file] [/udf:id, [UDF_file]] "

The following is a list of Winnt and Winnt32 command line installation options:

  • /? - to see options
  • /S:sourcepath - Windows NT files location.
  • /I:inf_file - The name of the setup information file without path information. If this option is not used dosnet.inf is the default.
  • /T:drive_letter - Setup will put temporary setup files on the drive specified.
  • /X - Setup will not create boot floppies.
  • /B - The boot files are loaded on the systemís hard disk, rather than using floppy disks. This option with Winnt cannot be used to install NT on a multi-processor machine since the required installation files are different.
  • /O - Setup will only create boot floppies.
  • /OX - Setup will setup floppies for installation from CD-ROM or a network location.
  • /U:answer_file - Specifies an unattended install and an answer file location which is required for unattended installation. Use the /s option to specify the location of source files.
  • /UDF:id [,UDF_file] - Specifies the UDF file used to identify the computer. The data from the UDF file is applied to some sections in the answer file. The install program will ask for a disk containing a unique UDF file if the UDF is not specified on the command line.
  • /F - Copy files from boot floppies without verification (Only winnt).
  • /C - Don't check for free space on installation and boot floppies (Only winnt).
  • /R - An optional directory to be installed is specified.
  • /RX - Defines the location option of an executable directory.
  • /E - Will execute the command specified after the install.

Beginning an Install

To install from the hard drive:

  1. Copy i386 information from the i386 directory to a created i386 directory on the hard drive.
  2. Run Winnt.exe or win32.exe
  3. Normally you will create three setup disks unless you skip this option.
  4. The installation will create a temporary $WIN_NT$~LS or ~BS directory. If this file is gone at the end of the installation, the installation was completed.
  5. When done you will reboot the system and the system will run 32 bit code.

An emergency repair disk can be created at installation time or later using the RDISK.EXE utility. It supplies the following two options:

  • Create a new repair disk.
  • Update a repair disk. The system hive,security accounts manager, security hive, software hive, default hive, CONFIG.NT, and AUTOEXEC.NT are copied to a NTROOT\REPAIR directory then to the repair disk.

The registry can be restored from a previous configuration by using this disk. therefore it is important to keep this disk updated when adding software to your computer and making any changes including security policy changes, adding new users, or adding hardware..

Setting the NetBIOS or Computer name

The computer name may contain as many as 15 characters.

Making a boot floppy

  1. Format a floppy
  2. Copy BOOT.INI, NTLDR, and NTDETECT.COM to the floppy along with NTBOOTDD.SYS for SCSI devices, if it is in the root directory.