What are the switches and parameters used in the Microsoft sysprep utility?
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What are the switches and parameters used in the Microsoft sysprep utility?


Article ID: 181825


Updated On:


Deployment Solution Ghost Solution Suite


What are the SYSPREP switches and parameters?


DS 8.x

GSS 3.x


See MS KB at http://support.microsoft.com/kb/302577

Sysprep parameters

You can use the following optional parameters with the Sysprep command in Windows:

  • -activated - Do not reset the grace period for Windows product activation. Use this parameter only if you have activated the Windows installation in the factory.
    Important The product key that you use to activate the Windows installation must match the product key that is located on the COA sticker that is attached to that particular computer.
  • -audit - Restarts the computer in Factory mode without having to generate new security IDs (SIDs) or process any items in the [OEMRunOnce] section of the Winbom.ini file. Use this command-line parameter only if the computer is already in Factory mode.
  • -bmsd - Populates all the available mass storage devices in the [SysprepMassStorage] section.
  • -clean - Clears the critical devices database that is used by the [SysprepMassStorage] section in the Sysprep.inf file.
  • -factory - Restarts in a network-enabled state without displaying Windows Welcome or mini-Setup. This parameter is useful for updating drivers, running Plug and Play enumeration, installing programs, testing, configuring the computer with customer data, or making other configuration changes in your factory environment. For companies that use disk imaging (or cloning) software, Factory mode can reduce the number of images that are required.
    When all the tasks in Factory mode are complete, run the Sysprep.exe file by using the -reseal parameter to prepare the computer for end-user delivery.
  • -forceshutdown - Shuts down the computer after the Sysprep.exe file finishes.
    Note: Use this parameter with computers that have an ACPI BIOS that do not shut down correctly with the default behavior of the Sysprep.exe file.
  • -mini - Configures Microsoft Windows XP Professional to use Mini-Setup instead of Windows Welcome. This parameter does not affect Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition, where the first-run experience is always Windows Welcome.
    Note that if you plan to use the Sysprep.inf file to automate Mini-Setup, you must either run the Sysprep tool by using the -mini switch, or click to select the MiniSetup check box in the GUI interface. By default, if you do not choose to run Mini-Setup, Windows XP Professional runs the Windows Welcome.
  • -noreboot - Modifies registry entries (SID, OemDuplicatorString, and other registry entries) without the computer restarting or preparing for duplication. This parameter is mainly used for testing, specifically to see if the registry is modified correctly. Microsoft does not recommend this option because making changes to a computer after the Sysprep.exe file has run may invalidate the preparation that was completed by the Sysprep.exe file. Do not use this parameter in a production environment.
  • -nosidgen - Runs the Sysprep.exe file without generating new SIDs. You must use this parameter if you are not duplicating the computer where you are running the Sysprep.exe file or if you are preinstalling domain controllers.
  • -pnp - Runs the full Plug and Play device enumeration and installation of previous devices during Mini-Setup. This command-line parameter has no effect if the first-run experience is Windows Welcome.
    Use the -pnp command-line parameter only when you must detect and install previous, non-Plug and Play devices. Do not use the sysprep -pnp command-line parameter on computers that only use Plug and Play devices. Otherwise, you will increase the time that it takes for the first-run experience without providing any additional benefit to the user.
    Note: When unsigned drivers are unavoidable, use the UpdateInstalledDrivers=yes parameter in conjunction with OemPnPDriversPath= and DriverSigningPolicy=ignore instead of the -pnp command-line parameter to provide a more seamless installation.
  • -quiet - Runs the Sysprep.exe file without displaying onscreen confirmation messages. This is useful if you are automating the Sysprep.exe file. For example, if you plan to run the Sysprep.exe file immediately after the unattended Setup program finishes, add the sysprep -quiet command to the [GuiRunOnce] section of the Unattend.txt file.
  • -reboot - Forces the computer to automatically restart, and then starts Windows Welcome Mini-Setup, or Factory mode, as specified. This is useful when you want to audit the computer and verify that the first-run experience is operating correctly.
  • -reseal - Clears the Event Viewer logs and prepares the computer for delivery to the customer. Windows Welcome or Mini-Setup is set to start the next time that the computer restarts. If you run the sysprep -factory command, you must seal the installation as the last step in your preinstallation process. To do this, run the sysprep -reseal command or click the Reseal button in the Sysprep dialog box.