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Thread: New EWF + MinLogon and CF instructions

  1. #21
    FLAC SFiorito's Avatar
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    Yeah, that's why! EWF Ram Reg mode is only supported in XPe SP2. Maybe you installed only XPe SP1? I've been looking for a good Z logo for a while. Thanks!

  2. #22
    FLAC SFiorito's Avatar
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    BUMP

    Updated instructions for minlogon registry entries.

  3. #23
    Constant Bitrate
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    Nice guide. I may have to break down and buy a CF card now.

    I am wondering if anyone is willing to run a prefetch experiment with their fast CF card? I've been playing around with the prefetch settings and I've found that boot times can be as fast as 10 seconds to explorer launch and 11 seconds to booting complete if you enable prefetching and let windows do it's "optimizations". More on the optimization part in a moment.

    Here's how it would work. Create your Minlogon+EWF system however leave prefetching on

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Contro l\Session Manager\Memory Management\PrefetchParameters]

    "EnablePrefetcher"=dword:00000003

    Make sure the COM+ Event System and Task Scheduler services are set to automatic.

    Once you have your system and services set how you want them, delete the contents, if any, of C:\WINDOWS\Prefetch and then reboot.

    Windows will generate the file "NTOSBOOT-B00DFAAD.pf" This is the prefetch info for your boot process. Each time you reboot the file is updated however the updates are not immediate. It can take a couple of minutes after booting before windows will write/update this file. Reboot your system 3-5 times and wait each time for the NTOSBOOT-B00DFAAD.pf file to be updated (check the time stamp the file size may not change). While you are waiting for the boot prefetch file to update launch and close all the applications that you would expect to use on your system, doing so will generate the prefetch files for those applications update those prefetch files 3-5 times as well. It is important that you do not change anything about your boot process (services or startup programs) while generating the boot prefetch file. You may want to run bootvis at each reboot to track how the boot times are changing with each cycle.

    Once you're done you should have several files in the prefetch directory (one for each application you've launched + the boot prefetch file. The boot prefetch file should be around 190-240kb if it is any larger something isn't quite right. It's not that things won't work , your boot times will just be a second or two longer. The smaller this file the faster your boot will be... or at least that has been my observation.

    At this point you're ready to for lack of a better word freeze your prefetch configuration. Activate EWF so your drive is protected from writes but leave prefetching on. My understanding is that any writes to the prefetch folder will be written to ram and erased on reboot which is fine. The size of individual prefetch files is quite small so I don't think you will be wasting much memory. On my system which was running for about a week my prefetch folder was about 2MB in size. Alternatively there is a registry setting that specifies the location of the prefetch folder, you could try changing this but I haven't tried it out. Another possibility is to disable either the task scheduler service or the COM+ Event System service. Prefetching needs these services active to write prefetch files. Transfer your image to your CF card and test it out.

    Just to give you an idea of the kind of improvement that can be had here are some numbers...

    EpiaM10kN
    512meg ram no pagefile
    2.5 5400rpm seagate 40gig drive
    Dlink dwl122 usb (DISABLED in CONTROLPANEL, enabling adds 1-2 seconds to the boot time)

    Services running: Windows Audio, CAD TRAP, DHCP CLIENT, COM+ Event System,Event Log, Plug and Play, Protected Storage, Security Accounts Manager, Task Scheduler, Wireless Zero, Logical Disk Manager, Workstation, Windows Management Instrumentation.

    Prefetching on: Explorer launch 9.77 sec, boot complete 10.91 sec
    Prefetching off: Explorer launch 12.35 sec, boot complete 17.72

    On the optimizations... The prefetch system will eventually write a file called Layout.ini in your prefetch directory. I'm not sure after what time interval the file is written, I left my system on overnight and in the morning the file was there. Apparently windows uses this file for further optimizations. Another interesting point was that two new prefetch files were in my prefetch directory "DefragNTFS.exe-xxxxx.pf, Defrag.exe-xxxxx.pf" from what I've read online these are the programs that defrag and optimize the layout of the boot files... One final piece of information I was playing with the bootvis optimize function and for grins killed the program while it was "optimizing" my system... After I rebooted my system the boot prefetch file was gone... Looks like part of bootvis's optimization routine deals with prefetch files.

    Ok, enough for now. Let us know how it works.

    -momanz

  4. #24
    FLAC SFiorito's Avatar
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    According to microsoft, bootvis simply kicks off the boot optimization routines of the system so I'm guessing they mean prefetch and the disk layout. Now, does prefetch just organize your boot files for less seek time? Because that's not an issue if you use a CF card. I ran bootvis a number of times on my CF install and nothing changed, but I'll try your prefetch idea tomorrow and see if anything changes on the CF card. Thanks!

  5. #25
    Constant Bitrate
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    I think the idea behind prefetching is that information about repetitive operations can simply be saved to a file that is later read and directly transferred to memory when those operations are set to be executed again. Usually when you boot your computer the system configuration does not change from boot to boot. What windows does is it observes the boot process and records data in the prefetch files for use in subsequent restarts. The same thing applies to loading applications. When you start an application a series of instructions is executed from the point you launch the app to where the user interface becomes active. The results of those instructions does not change (unless there is a change in the apps startup procedure). To speed things up even further windows defrags and moves these files (and possibly others) into a continous portion of the hard drive that can be most quickly accessed.

    I agree that the defragmentation and layout portion of things will not make a difference to CF users, but if the above is correct, the prefetch portion of things should cut down on load time of system components and applications into memory. The trick is getting windows to generate those optimal prefetch files. Good luck.

  6. #26
    FLAC SFiorito's Avatar
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    bump... for new visitors to the thread looking for instructions

  7. #27
    FLAC SFiorito's Avatar
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    bump again... these are the latest instructions for minlogon and ewf. it is not necessary to install both ewf and minlogon unless you want both components. if you follow the steps in the doc linked in the first post of this thread you'll be fine.

  8. #28
    Constant Bitrate
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    i am a little confused about minlogon and ewf.. .are they only for XPE???

    if you can use minlogon.exe for XP Pro... where can u find the file? ( i searched msdn.microsoft.com)


    [after reading another post i realized that you have to download the XPE demo and then take the files from there... sorry for being lazy]
    AT mobo
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    Linksys NIC
    Irman

  9. #29
    Constant Bitrate SamDude's Avatar
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    Can we sticky this thread?
    Have: Via Epia M10000 1GHz|512Mb|20Gb|Slim slot-loading DVD-R|Carnetix P1280|RevCam|GPS|Illum’d keyboard|11g Wifi
    Waiting for: Xenarc TFT in-dash (haha!)

    Status: Finalising component procurement

  10. #30
    FLAC IntellaWorks's Avatar
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    Def.

    Definatly sticky this thread ! I had trouble searching for it and actually finding it..
    Progress [I will seriously never be done!]
    Via EPIA MII
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    OEM GPS (embedded)
    nLite WinXP pro on
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