Tech Tips / Windows 2000 Server / Installation and Configuration

The Deploy.cab file

Installing Windows 2000 on clients can be a daunting task if you have to visit every machine on your network with the CD-ROM, answer all the prompts, and wait for setup to finish. Depending on the size of your network, this installation method could take days or even weeks. Windows 2000 provides a variety of mechanisms to speed up its deployment on your client and server machines, which we'll cover over the next couple of weeks.

Fortunately, Microsoft has provided many useful utilities to help you manage Windows 2000 systems, including deployment. The best thing about these tools is that most of them are available for free on every Windows 2000 CD-ROM (Professional, Server, and Advanced Server).

Tools that help administrators deploy Windows 2000 are located in the deploy.cab file in the support\tools directory on the Windows 2000 CD-ROM. When you double-click this file, Windows Explorer will show its contents and you'll be able to expand the files. The most useful files in this package are:

  • Deptool.chm - This Help file includes instructions and the syntax for all programs in the package.
  • Setupmgr.exe - Windows 2000 Setup Manager Wizard. This utility automates the creation of unattended setup files and distribution shares (shared that contains Windows 2000 source files).
  • Sysprep.exe - Windows 2000 System Preparation Tool. This tool helps you prepare a Windows 2000 machine for cloning by removing all computer-specific settings.
  • Unattend.doc - This file includes all entries that can be used in the answer file.

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