Friday, April 29, 2005

Loading XPE

I was told that Windows XP Embedded with Service Pack 1 resolves glitches discovered since Microsoft released the operating system last year and also adds new features to the product. XP embedded is a componentized version of windows XP wherein you can choose to add the necessary components for your image. The requirements for creating an image can be obtained from many web sites about this OS. The simplest way that I found for creating an image is as follows: 1.Load the following application from CD-1 and CD-2 (sp1) {you can also download the same from website, but you will need to register the application anyway} TOOLS and DATABASE. This in turn will create a will give applications like: 1. Target Designer 2. Component designer. 3. SDI Loader. 4. Component Database Manager. 5. Target Analyzer.(TAP.exe) 6. Target analyzer (TA.exe) Apart from the Target Analyzer the other things will only work if the database is already loaded and is running. 2.Next step is to create an image of the operating system, for any operating system to run at least the essential components and the dll’s need to be loaded. Instead we breaking our head and trying to load all the components, we can either use TA.exe or TAP.exe. 3.TAP or TA must be installed and run on the machine on which the IMAGE needs to be loaded. 4.Target analyzer Probe (TAP) will be in the following folder structure c:\ProgramFiles\WindowsEmbedded\Utilities5.It is always better to use TAP rather than TA, TAP finds a detailed lit of the drivers that are installed in the target machine. We can say that TA is a subset of TAP. 6.Once you click on the TAP.exe a console window opens up and it runs for a few seconds, and after that in the same directory you will see a file called devices.pmq 7.Rename the file to a more meaningful name {This is just optional but will be useful} 8.Open the component designer and import the .pmq file. 9.Once that is done it will give you one component that comprises of all the drivers that the TAP found. 10.Save this file. 11.Open the component database manager and import your own component into the database. The name of the component will be same as the name of the .pmq file. If you did not rename before. You might see a lot of components named “DEVICES” in the database over a period of time. 12.Now that your component is in the database you can now use it for future purposes. 13.Open the Target Designer and say NEW. 14.It will ask for a name for the configuration file , give a meaningful name. 15.There will be three panels in the Target Designer. 15.1 In the center panel click on settings 15.2 On the right most panel a list of settings will be displayed 15.3 Click on Target image settings and do this: 15.3 If you are planning for a DUAL boot, which is always advisable, change, the drive letter to the drive in which you have planned to load the image. For the boot.ini setting in that itself mention the partition number. Say you are going to load it in D:\ which is a primary partition then say in the partition(2) instead of (1) which means that it will look for the ntldr in second partition. 15.4 Leave it as it is if you are planning to load in the c:Note: BOOT file doesn’t recognize the CD partition, if your second primary partition is E: and your CD drive is D: then in the settings you will have to give the image partition as D: and not as E: 16.Now that the target designer is open you will be able to see your own component in the list. 17.Add that component and the components. 18.After you are finished with adding the components do a dependency check, this will give you a list of all the components that are needed for the components that you have added. 19.Once you resolve all the dependencies you can build the image. 20.The image will give you a folder structure consisting of. Documents and settings, program files, windows, boot.ini, ntldr. Ntloader and weruntime. copy all of these to another drive if you need to perform dual boot or copy to the target device and make the necessary changes in the c:\ boot.ini file in case of a dual boot. 21.Restart the system and it should work well. Note that first time FBA.exe will run and take a while. In the next blog I will talk about the problems that I faced with XPE and how to resolve them. Then also working with .net framework 1.1 applications on XPE.

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