Advanced Options and Alternate Configurations

1. Installing and Running WinBuilder

2. Advanced Options

3. Drivers

4. Using VistaPE on Other Media

1. Installing and Running WinBuilder

The WinBuilder folder

When creating a folder for WinBuilder, it's important to keep a few things in mind:

Using multiple installations of WinBuilder on the same computer

The WinBuilder program and all of its files are self-contained in its folder. If you want to keep and existing build as it is and create a copy to play around with, just copy the contents of the existing WinBuilder folder to another folder. For example: WinBuilder is installed to C:\WinBuilder074 and you want a copy to play with adding FireFox and VistaPE tweaks. You create a new folder named C:\WinBuilder_FF and copy the contents of the original folder into it. Now you have a exact copy of the original without having to redownload and resetup anything.

Running WinBuilder in Vista

When running WinBuilder in Vista with UAC turn on (the default), you'll need to make sure to run the program in Administrator Mode.

If you don't want to have to select Administrator Mode every time you run the program, right-click on the WinBuilder.exe file, select Properties, select the Compatibility tab and check the Run this program as an administrator box. Finally, click the OK button to save the change.

Using a Windows AIK source vs. a Vista DVD source

Click here to see an example of a sample "bare-bones" VistaPE build that includes several changes to the scripts selected by default. Also noted are scripts that are selected by default that require a Vista DVD as the source in order to work. If you are using the Windows AIK as the source and run the build with any of these scripts selected, the scripts/programs will generate either warnings (not fatal) or errors. Most of these scripts abort gracefully if a Vista DVD source is not detected. However, one (the Addons >> share script) causes many errors.

2. Advanced Options

Force all programs into RAM

If you are creating a small build or want to be able to remove the VistaPE CD after it's booted, check the Force place all programs to RAM (boot.wim) option. For best results the computer should have at least 512MB of RAM with at least 1GB being better. As my builds often only contain a few programs, I usually select this option.

Selecting this option may result in booting errors on some computers.

Changing the default VistaPE shell

There are multiple shells (desktops) available for VistaPE. PE Shell Swapper is the default and automatically starts LiteStep if no changes are made.

If you would like a single shell to start by default, you can select it as the Main shell in the settings for the Main Configuration script.


If you would prefer to use PE Shell Swapper, but have a different default shell loaded, set the correct shell's option to be the PE Shell Swapper default (make sure to uncheck this option from any other selected shell scripts).

3. Drivers

Including the VistaPE driver packs

VistaPE has two driver scripts that you can download and include in your build. One is for NIC (LAN) drivers and the other is for SATA/SCSI/RAID controllers.


However, there are some drivers that, though included, still don't load correctly and will require being added using Mustang's AddDriver script.

Allowing multiple WinBuilder folders to use the same drivers

If you plan to create multiple VistaPE setups in different folders, you can create a "WinBuilder Driver" folder to contain any drivers you wish to add to each setup. This will allow you to just copy the AddDrivers script and not have to modify any of the driver paths information.

For example: You could create the C:\WBDrivers folder. In it, you would create the sub-folders for each driver needed. C:\WBDrivers\eSATA could contain your SiI3132 driver. In that case, the path used in the AddDrivers script would be: C:\WBDrivers\eSATA\SI3132.INF

Copying the AddDrivers script from a WinBuilder setup in C:\WinBuilder074 to C:\WinBuilder-TI-11 will not require any changes to the saved driver paths.

Allowing the drivers to be installed without user input

Once you know your drivers install and work correctly in your VistaPE build, you can uncheck the Pause after each driver is installed option. The drivers will then be included in the build automatically without you needing to close the Command Prompt box for each driver.

4. Using VistaPE on Other Media

If you would like to put your VistaPE build on a Flashdrive or USB Hard Drive instead of (or in addition to) a CD, detailed instructions can be found here.

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