Windows XP and 2000 Tips & Tricks UPDATE—brought to you by the Windows & .NET Magazine Network and the Windows 2000 FAQ site
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May 13, 2002—In this issue:

1. COMMENTARY

2. FAQS

  • Q. How can I enter an OEMPnPDriversPath value longer than 256 characters in the Windows 2000 unattend.txt file?
  • Q. How can I uninstall then reinstall Microsoft NetMeeting under Windows 2000?
  • Q. How can I modify the installation credential settings in Windows 2000?
  • Q. Why does my machine shut down slowly after I enable the "Clear Virtual Memory Pagefile When System Shuts Down" setting?
  • Q. How can I replace the Microsoft Outlook Web Access (OWA) logo in the upper left corner of OWA in Microsoft Exchange 2000 Server?
  • Q. What's the Windows XP Automatic Update?
  • Q. How can I configure which icons Windows XP displays in the notification area at the bottom of the screen?

3. ANNOUNCEMENTS

  • Cast Your Vote for our Readers' Choice Awards!
  • Mobile & Wireless Solutions—An Online Resource for a New Era

4. CONTACT US

  • See this section for a list of ways to contact us.

1. COMMENTARY
(contributed by John Savill, FAQ Editor, jsavill@winnetmag.com)

This week, I explain how to manually enter an OEMPnPDriversPath value longer than 256 characters in Windows 2000 unattended installation files, how to uninstall and reinstall Microsoft NetMeeting in Win2K, and how to modify the installation credential settings in Win2K. I also describe why a machine takes longer to shut down after you enable the "Clear Virtual Memory Pagefile When System Shuts Down" setting and how to replace the Microsoft Outlook Web Access (OWA) logo in Microsoft Exchange 2000 Server. Finally, I explore some new Windows XP features and tell you about the Automatic Update feature and how to configure which icons appear in XP's notification area at the bottom of the screen.

Microsoft will begin beta testing XP Service Pack 1 (SP1) soon, and I'll be participating in the testing phase. Look for SP1 to be available by August.


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2. FAQS

  • Q. How can I enter an OEMPnPDriversPath value longer than 256 characters in the Windows 2000 unattend.txt file?

  • A. By default, Win2K limits the OEMPnPDriversPath value in the unattend.txt file to 256 characters, which can prevent the OS from automatically installing some drivers. To work around this limitation, you can modify the .inf file that stores the default paths for drivers and manually add extra paths by performing the following steps:
    1. Open the hivesft.inf file on the Win2K distribution server.
    2. Search for the line
    3. HKLM,"SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion",
      "DevicePath",0x00020002,"%SystemRoot%\inf"
    4. Append the extra paths to this line, separating each path by a semicolon (;). For example, to add the paths
    5. C:\drivers\gui, C:\drivers\usb, C:\drivers\keyboard,
       and C:\drivers\audio,

      change the line to read

      HKLM,"SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion",
      "DevicePath",0x00020002,"%SystemRoot%\inf";c:\drivers\gui;
      c:\drivers\usb;c:\drivers\keyboard;c:\drivers\audio
    6. Save the hivesft.inf file.

  • Q. How can I uninstall then reinstall Microsoft NetMeeting under Windows 2000?

  • A. Win2K will run only NetMeeting 3.0, which is the version that ships with the OS. Newer versions (e.g., NetMeeting 3.0 Service Pack 2—SP2) simply won't install on Win2K, and earlier versions (e.g., NetMeeting 2.x) can cause audio and visual problems or can appear as uninstalled in the Control Panel Add/Remove Programs applet.

    If you've tried to install one of these other versions, you can restore the original NetMeeting 3.0 functionality by performing the following steps:

    1. Copy the msnetmtg.inf file from \%systemroot%\inf (e.g., c:\windows\inf) to a safe location.
    2. From the command prompt, type
    3.    \%systemroot%\system32\rundll32.exe
       setupapi,InstallHinfSection
       NetMtg.Remove 132 msnetmtg.inf

      to uninstall the current version of NetMeeting.

    4. To reinstall NetMeeting 3.0, right-click the msnetmtg.inf file you copied in Step 1 and select Install from the context menu (you might need to insert the Win2K CD-ROM to complete the installation).
    5. Restart your computer.

  • Q. How can I modify the installation credential settings in Windows 2000?

  • A. An administrator can lock down a system to prevent a user from installing new software, or the administrator can configure the system so that the user can provide credentials to allow the installation to continue. To modify the installation credential settings for one machine, perform the following steps:
    1. Start a registry editor (e.g., regedit.exe).
    2. Navigate to the HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer subkey.
    3. Double-click the NoRunasInstallPrompt value; set it to 1 to disable credentials or 0 to allow credentials.
    4. Click OK.

    To modify the installation credential settings for network installations, perform the following steps:

    1. Start a registry editor (e.g., regedit.exe).
    2. Navigate to the HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer subkey.
    3. Double-click the PromptRunasInstalNetPath value; set it to 1 to disable credentials or 0 to allow credentials.
    4. Click OK.

  • Q. Why does my machine shut down slowly after I enable the "Clear Virtual Memory Pagefile When System Shuts Down" setting?

  • A. In a previous FAQ, I explained how to configure the system to clear the pagefile at shutdown for security purposes. When you enable the setting to clear the pagefile, your machine will take longer to shut down (depending on the size of the pagefile and on the disk subsystem performance) because the shutdown process must physically write to each page in the pagefile to clear the page.

  • Q. How can I replace the Microsoft Outlook Web Access (OWA) logo in the upper left corner of OWA in Microsoft Exchange 2000 Server?

  • A. To replace the standard image, save your new image as logo-ie5.gif in the \%programfiles%\exchsrvr\exchweb\img folder on the server. The new image needs to have dimensions of 138 pixels by 48 pixels.

  • Q. What's the Windows XP Automatic Update?

  • A. XP's Automatic Update replaces Windows 2000's Critical Update Notification utility, which notified users when software updates were available on the Microsoft Web site. Automatic Update takes the next step and lets the system automatically download the updates and prepare them for installation at the user's convenience.

    To access the Automatic Update settings, go to the Control Panel System applet and select the Automatic Updates tab. The tab provides three options:

    • "Download the updates automatically and notify me when they are ready to be installed"—This option instructs Automatic Update to periodically check the Windows Update site and download crucial updates in the background when the Internet connection is idle. After download, an Automatic Update icon will appear in the notification area at the bottom of the screen. The user can then get details about the downloaded updates, choose to be reminded about the updates later (from 3 minutes to 3 days later), or choose to install the updates.
    • "Notify me before downloading any updates and notify me again before installing them on my computer"—This option works similarly to Win2K's Critical Update Notification and instructs Automatic Update to notify the user when a crucial update is available so that the user can select which updates Automatic Update should download.
    • "Turn off automatic updating. I want to update my computer manually"—This option disables Automatic Update and lets the user manually check http://windowsupdate.microsoft.com for updates. Even when the user selects this option to disable Automatic Update, the service (wuaserv) still runs.

  • Q. How can I configure which icons Windows XP displays in the notification area at the bottom of the screen?

  • A. XP lets you configure which notification icons appear on screen and whether XP hides an icon when its process is idle. To configure the display notification settings, perform the following steps:
    1. Right-click the taskbar and select Properties from the context menu.
    2. Select the "Hide inactive icons" check box.
    3. Click the Customize button.
    4. Select the appropriate display behavior (i.e., "Hide when inactive," "Always hide," "Always show") for the icon you want to modify.
    5. Repeat Step 4 for each icon whose behavior you want to modify, then click OK to close all dialog boxes.

    3. ANNOUNCEMENTS

  • CAST YOUR VOTE FOR OUR READERS' CHOICE AWARDS!

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  • MOBILE AND WIRELESS SOLUTIONS—AN ONLINE RESOURCE FOR A NEW ERA

  • Our mobile and wireless computing site has it all—articles, product reviews, and other resources to help you support a wireless network and mobile users. Check it out today!
    http://www.mobile-and-wireless.com

    4. CONTACT US

    Here's how to reach us with your comments and questions:
    • ABOUT THE FAQS — jsavill@winnetmag.com
    • ABOUT THE NEWSLETTER IN GENERAL — warren@winnetmag.com

    (please mention the newsletter name in the subject line)

    • TECHNICAL QUESTIONS — http://www.winnetmag.net/forums
    • PRODUCT NEWS — products@winnetmag.com
    • QUESTIONS ABOUT YOUR Windows XP and 2000 Tips & Tricks UPDATE SUBSCRIPTION?
      Customer Support — tipsandtricks@winnetmag.com
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