WinPE support

Windows Preinstallation Environment (WinPE) requires some special considerations for the Advanced Settings Utility (ASU) to function correctly. These considerations are different for WinPE 1.6 or earlier and WinPE 2.0 (the version that is based on the Windows Vista operating system) or later.

WinPE 1.6 or earlier

ASU is not supported on WinPE 1.6 for IMM-based servers.

WinPE 1.6 or earlier (the WinPE versions that are based on Windows XP and Windows Server 2003) do not have temporary file storage, which affects how you extract the device driver from the ASU executable file.

WinPE 1.6 and earlier versions also cannot recognize new USB devices after startup, which affects the behavior of the Remote Supervisor Adapter II Reset and Restart commands.

Device driver extraction for read-only media

Windows operating-system support of the ASU requires that a helper device driver be loaded. This device driver is embedded in the ASU executable file and, under normal circumstances, is extracted automatically at run time to either a temporary directory or, if no TEMP environment variable is defined, the directory that contains the executable file, if it does not already exist. The device driver is then automatically loaded and used by the ASU.

In the case of WinPE, where no writeable temporary directory is defined, there must be an alternative way to load the device driver.

If the ASU is unable to extract the device driver to a temporary directory, it attempts to load the device driver from the directory where the executable file is located. If the device driver exists, it is loaded, and execution continues. If the ASU does not find the device driver and cannot extract it for loading, an error message is displayed, and execution is stopped.

If you are running the ASU from non-writeable media (such as a CD), the device driver must exist on the media. You can manually extract it from the ASU executable file (and then copy it onto the non-writeable media) by running the following command from writeable media that contains the ASU:

ASU extractdriver (32-bit Windows version)

ASU64 extractdriver (64-bit Windows version)

The device driver is extracted as wflash.sys into the directory that contains the executable file. From there, you can copy the device driver (together with the ASU executable file) to non-writeable media such as a bootable WinPE CD.

Remote Supervisor Adapter II reset and restart problem with WinPE

WinPE versions that are earlier than 2.0 recognize devices that are available only at startup and later. This causes a problem when you issue a resetrsa or rebootrsa command to the Remote Supervisor Adapter II using the ASU because it removes the Remote Supervisor Adapter II from the bus. This prevents further communication with the device before a subsequent server restart.

If the version of WinPE is earlier than 2.0, an information message is displayed indicating that the server must be restarted before you can run another ASU command for the Remote Supervisor Adapter II.

WinPE 2.0 or later

The standard WinPE 2.0 (based on the Windows Vista operating system) image is missing two packages that the ASU requires for operation: the WinPE-MDAC-Package and the WinPE-WMI-Package. To run the ASU, you must add these two packages. For instructions about adding WinPE packages to the image that you create, see the documentation that comes with the Windows Automated Installation Kit.

WinPE 2.0 has an integrated Microsoft IPMI device driver, and the ASU 2.3.0 or later has an embedded mapping layer that supports that driver. Therefore, no user-installed IPMI driver or mapping layer is required. For more information about the IPMI device-driver support in WinPE 2.0, see IPMI device driver support for Windows.