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Easy Sysprep V3 Final



When deploying VMs from this Template new SIDs were generated but I noticed some time after that it didn't work anymore. And when I run a sysprep on the VM after deployment I get the error: 'A fatal error occurred while trying to sysprep the machine'




Easy Sysprep V3 Final



As you may know, Windows Server 2016 or 10, cannot be rearmed more than three (3) times. This means that you can run Sysprep on the same machine (or image) only 3 times. If you try to run sysprep more than 3 times, then the "System Preparation Tool" will give you this error message: "A fatal error occurred while trying to Sysprep the machine" The three (3) times rearm (sysprep) limitation is applied because when you run sysprep, you reset the period (limit) of 30 days to activate your Windows copy. If you able to run Sysprep with no limits, you should run Windows forever without any activation.


The easy way to get around the three time limit of sysprepping is to either a) use a virtual machine and save a snapshot before the first time you sysprep, or b) capture an image through the console of the state before sysprepping, and then deploy it when it to the same class machine when it needs updated. If you accidentally reached the three rearm limit without having to start over from scratch, here is a step by step how to get around it


1) Open up Registry Editor. (Start > Run > regedit) 2) Browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\Setup\Status\Sysprep Status. 3) Change the value of CleanupState to 2. (0x00000002) 4) Change the value of GeneralizationState to 7. (0x00000007) 5) Browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\WindowsNT\CurrentVersion\SoftwareProtectionPlatform. 6) Change the value of SkipRearm to 1. (0x00000001) 7) Open an administrative command prompt. (Start > Run > cmd... right click on the cmd icon and go to Run as Administrator) 8) Type msdtc -uninstall and push enter. Wait a minute and reboot. 9) Type msdtc -install and push enter. Wait a minute and reboot. 10) Browse to c:\windows\system32\sysprep. Delete the panther folder. 11) Run sysprep. It should now complete, and you can capture the image. This will have to be done every time you capture the image, but it still is less time consuming than starting over from scratch. Source: -home/librarydocuments/viewdocument?DocumentKey=c2d9c86c-53ba-47c4-8155-6e548a548aee&CommunityKey=e2fbb15e-15c3-430b-97f3-4871e488162b&tab=librarydocuments


Hello, Thank you very much for your explanation !! now I understand better the big part of the problem. However, a few points still seem unclear to me: 01 - According to the Microsoft communicated link: the limit of 3 rearm is applied to versions Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2012, Windows Server 2012 R2 and months I am on Win server 2016 and Win server 2019 and this explains the value Reamaining Windows rearm count = 995 after executing the slmgr.vbs / dlv command (capture attached) and what I confirm with the link below: -us/windows- hardware / manufacture / desktop / sysprep - generalize - a-windows-installation # limits-on-how-many-times-you-can-run-sysprep am I true ?? 02 - in my current case: I deployed a new VM, and the result after booting: new SSID, SkipRearm = 0, GeneralizationState = 7, CleanupState = 2, Reamaining Windows rearm count = 995 (attached captures) **** If I only change the GeneralizationState to 3 value on the same VM does not work. **** Another Sysprep on the same VM with GeneralizationState = 7 On. Thank you very much for your help and explanations Looks. Hadjer YH. ![99837-error.png][1]![99819-reamaining-windows-rearm-count.png][2]![99838-generalizationstate.png][2]![99759-skiprearm.png][3] ![99931-reamaining-windows-rearm-count.png][4] [1]: /api/attachments/99837-error.png?platform=QnA [2]: /api/attachments/99838-generalizationstate.png?platform=QnA [3]: /api/attachments/99759-skiprearm.png?platform=QnA [4]: /api/attachments/99931-reamaining-windows-rearm-count.png?platform=QnA


Second, Sysprep can use the same established Windows image as a foundation for many different PCs, adding desired drivers and applications for each unique system. A hardware provider could then create a distinctly different image for installation on that specific system. This is called a build-to-order or BTO image. For example, a small custom PC builder that creates new systems on request might modify a basic Windows image with hardware-specific drivers and customer-requested applications. With those, it could create a finalized Windows installation image for a particular machine.


The third feature of Sysprep is audit mode, which customizes the Windows image. Audit mode allows the addition of applications, drivers and scripts. Audit mode also supports testing to ensure that the image will install properly, and the system will operate as expected. Once the Windows image is customized and tested, the sysprep /oobe command tells Windows to start the installation on the next boot cycle.


If a user were to boot a physical computer or a virtual machine from a sysprepped clone, Windows would walk them through the normal setup process. One of the main benefits to using Sysprep is that users can completely automate Setup by providing the Sysprep deployment with an answer file. The answer file provides answers to the questions that Windows normally asks during Setup. Using an answer file allows Setup to run in an unattended mode, installing Windows in a predetermined way.


There is a different method you can take. First, you should install Windows 10, customize it to your needs, install all the software you need, capture that installation and use it to create an ISO. Using this customized ISO for your installation media, you need half an hour to clean install Windows 10 with all your software and personalization. When you want to change something in your ISO, add or remove software, change personalization, or update or upgrade Windows 10, you simply update the image and create a new ISO. It's fast and easy to do, and it can work for any Windows administrators.


Installation takes 15 minutes or so to complete. While it's running, you have time to prepare some assets on your host machine. First, download and install the Windows 10 Assessment and Deployment Kit (ADK). Next, create an unattended answer file using the Windows System Image Manager (SIM), which is part of the Windows ADK. Don't panic even if you are a Windows SIM newbie. It's easy to use.


You can now install your software and update Windows. Do not run any programs yet. If, for example, the installer shows "Run this application now" selected in a final prompt, unselect it and close that installer. Do not install any hardware drivers -- even those that Windows Update installs automatically will be removed later. If any installer or update requires a restart, do it. Windows returns to audit mode after restart. If you want to download software, you must use Microsoft Edge.


The beauty of using Hyper-V VM as technician machine lies in how easy it makes the job of maintaining and updating a customized install image. For example, Windows Insider: Fast Ring receives new pre-release builds frequently and participants may want to upgrade their ISOs at the same pace.


As you may know, Windows Vista, 7, 8.x or 10, cannot be rearmed more than three (3) times. This means that you can run Sysprep on the same machine (or image) only 3 times. If you try to run sysprep more than 3 times, then the "System Preparation Tool" will give you this error message: "A fatal error occurred while trying to Sysprep the machine" and the "Setuperr.log" file (in 'C:\Windows\System32\Sysprep\Panther\' folder) is contain the following lines:"Date Time, Error [0x0f0073] SYSPRP RunExternalDlls:Not running DLLs; either the machine is in an invalid state or we couldn't update the recorded state, dwRet = 31"


The three (3) times rearm (sysprep) limitation is applied because when you run sysprep, you reset the period (limit) of 30 days to activate your Windows copy. If you able to run Sysprep with no limits, you should run Windows forever without any activation.


The normal ways (according to Microsoft) to bypass Sysprep's 3 times limit, is to create the Windows image from scratch or to capture an image from the machine before running sysprep (for first time) and when you reach the three (3) times rearm limit, you will deploy the captured image.


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Not easily, Sysprep works well for Windows Vista and Windows 7, but Windows XP's driver architecture is significantly different and whilst sysprep generalise works to a degree, it certainly does not have the same level of control/flexibility as later versions of Windows.


We like to periodically roll updates into the image we deploy with SCCM (so that deployment patching is reasonably short) and our process takes the last wim made, patches and syspreps it. Since we've done this to our Windows 7 image about half a dozen times so far, just hoping it doesn't cause some type of inbreeding situation...


There is no limit to the number of times that the Sysprep command can run on a computer. However, the clock for Windows Product Activation begins its countdown the first time Windows starts. You can use the sysprep /generalize command to reset Windows Product Activation a maximum of three times. After the third time that you run the sysprep /generalize command, the clock can no longer be reset.


Assuming you are using a KMS: We recommend that KMS clients use the sysprep /generalize command where the value of the SkipRearm setting is equal to 1. After capturing this image, use the sysprep /generalize command, where the value of the SkipRearm setting is equal to 0.


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