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Windows Vista Notes


Windows OS Installation Notes


Windows Vista Requirements



Disk Space            
15GB or 20GB

Direct X9 with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver


Windows Vista Versions

Home Basic, Home Premium, Business, Ultimate and Enterprise

OS Boot methods


Installing Windows
Attended Installation with disk (Full Version or Clean Install)
Attended Installation (Upgrade Version)
Multi-boot Scenario
Virtualization (VMware, Virtual PC, Hypervisor)
Network Installation (push vs. pull) RIS (Remote Installation Service)
Disk Imaging (Sysprep or Norton Ghost)
Unattended Installation
Makeboot disk installation

System Folder
Windows Vista (C:\WINDOWS)

Windows Vista Setup Options
Upgrade vs. Custom (Advanced)

File Systems

FAT16 -File Allocation Table 16bit
excellent on smaller hard drives
2GB limit per partition

FAT32- File Allocation Table 32bit excellent on OS using a 32bit environment, more reliable and can support larger partitions.

NTFS - New Technology File System supports larger partition, Allows file security, protect system resources, supports compression, encryption, disk quotas and file ownership

Windows Vista supports FAT16, FAT32 and NTFS
UNIX and Linux – NFS

Pre OS installation Utilities

Backup (Normal (Full), Differential, Incremental, Copy, Daily)
Windows Easy Transfer
HCL (Hardware Compatibility List)
Upgrade Advisor

HOW TO CREATE A START UP DISK (emergency disk, repair disk, boot disk, recovery disk etc.)

What happens when your computer has a problem so severe it won’t boot?  Often times, you will need an emergency or boot disk to repair and restore your computer so that it would boot up properly.

Windows Vista (System Repair Disc)

Start>Control Panel>Backup and Restore> Create a System Repair Disc>Insert Disk>Follow Directions

Partition Drives – Create and divide units of a hard drive

Partition Utilities

OS installation Disk, FDISK, Delpart, Diskpart, Disk Management or PQ Magic

Basic Disk
C is primary partition
Extended partition is the total drive space minus the primary partition
Logical partition is D-Z

Dynamic Disk
Simple Volume
Spanned Volume
Mirror Volume
Stripe Volume
Raid 5 Volume

Format – High level formatting is the command use to make drives and partition usable (Quick vs. Full Format)

Disk Management
Drive Status
Assigning Drive letters
Adding Drives
Assigning Partitions

Installation Checklist

  • OS Installation
  • Drivers (MMDOC)
  • Antivirus
  • Antispyware
  • Firewall
  • IDS (Intrusion Detection System) IPS (Intrusion Prevention System)
  • Utilities
  • Applications
  • Updates (Service Pack 2)
  • Common Sense

OS Boot Files

BOOTMGR – Found in the MBR this file boots up the Windows operating system

BCD (Boot Configuration Data) - is text file that lists the available OS found and tells the BOOTMGR where to find boot partition

WINLOAD.EXE- Loads the Windows Interface

NTOSKRNL.EXE- Windows Vista Core Files

WIN.COM - Windows  command file
HAL.DLL - Hardware Abstraction layer

Windows Vista Environment

(Desktop, Start Menu, Taskbar, Notification Area, and System Tray)

Windows Vista (Flip 3D, Aero, Desktop Gadgets, UAC User Account Control, Shadow Copy, Ready Boost, Compatibility Mode, Category View, File Structure, Jump List, Libraries, Security, Network Sharing Center, Home Group)

Username - A unique user logon name that is assigned by an administrator
Password - personal identifier that is used to verify the user
Log on to - Log on to Windows Locally or Domain
Windows Vista (Supports Authentication Security called Kerberos)

Security Dialog Box (Windows Vista) Ctrl + Alt + Del

Lock This Computer

Switch User
Log Off
Change a Password
Start Task Manager
LFN- Long file name Support

Windows supports up to 255 characters

cannot use the following characters in a windows naming scheme

/ \ forward and backward slashes
? Question mark
< > Greater than and less than
: Colon
* Asterisk
" " Quotation marks
| Pipe character

PnP - The ability of a device to run without user intervention
3 things needed in order to be PnP

PnP BIOS - Any BIOS made after 1995 are typically PnP
PnP OS – Any Microsoft OS is PnP capable except (Windows 95 OSR1, Windows NT and DOS)
PnP Device - Any Device made around 1996 are typically PnP (Not PnP is called Legacy Devices

Double Click on Computer icon

Computer icon is used to manage files and folders on your computer and on any storage devices attached to your computer. 

Recycle Bin - Where deleted files are stored until complete erased

Windows explorer
- Windows user interface

Right Click Start>Open Windows Explorer
Start>All Programs>Accessories>Windows Explorer

Right Click Desktop>Personalize
Start>Control Panel>Personalization

Windows Vista Personalization


Windows Color and Apperance

Desktop Background

Screen Saver


Mouse Pointers


Display Settings

Taskbar - contains the start menu and the system tray

Right Click Taskbar>Properties

Start Menu
Notification Areas


Right Click My Computer>Properties
Start>Control Panel>System

View basic information about your computer

(Windows Experience Index)
1 up to 7.9
Device Manager

Remote Settings
System Protection

Advanced System Settings
Computer Name
System Protection

Device Manager Errors:  Exclamation point and question mark (problem usually drivers and configuration problem) and red x (disable) needs to enable device or connect device could also be a conflict
Description Codes in the Device Manager

Code 1    Device not configured properly
Code 3    Driver Corrupted
Code 10   Device cannot start
Code 12   Device has resource issues

Driver Signing: Ignore, warn and block
Hardware Wizard: Use for installing legacy devices
User Profiles: Computer name/user 3 types of user profiles: local, roaming and (mandatory with server only)
Pagefile.sys (Virtual Memory should be 1.5 times as big as your memory)

Start Classic menu

Recent Items
Connect To
Control Panel
Default Programs
Help and Support
All Programs
Search Address Bar
Start (Shut Down and Lock Computer icons)


Control Panel Options
Control Panel contains programs that you use to configure the Windows operating system or the computer’s hardware.  Below, we list the most commonly used Control Panel programs.

Start>Control Panel or Start>Control Panel

Control Panel Windows Vista

Action Center

Administrative Tools

Windows Vista administrative tools

Computer Management, Device Manager, Users and Groups, Local Security Policy, Performance Monitor, Services, System Configuration, Task Scheduler, Component Services, Data Sources, iSCSI initiator, Performance Monitor, Print Management, Windows Memory Diagnostics, Windows Firewall and Advanced Security

Auto Play

Backup and Restore Center

Bit Locker Drive Encryption

Color Management


Default Programs

Desktop Gadgets

Device Manager

Device and Printers

Ease of Access Center

Folder Options


Getting Started

Home Group

Indexing Options

Internet Options



Location and other sensors



Network & Sharing Center

Notification area icons

Parental Controls

Pen & Input Devices

Performance Information and Tools


Phone and Modem

Power Options

Program & Features


Region and Language

Remote App and Desktop Connections


Speech Recognition Options

Sync Center


Taskbar and Start Menu

Text to Speech


User Accounts

Welcome Center

Windows Card Space

Windows Defender

Windows Firewall

Windows Mobility Center

Windows Live Language Setting

Windows Sidebar

Windows Sideshow

Right Click My Computer >Manage

Computer Management

Computer Management Windows Vista
Right Click My Computer>Manage

Start>Settings>Control Panel>Administrative Tools>Computer Management
Computer Management provides a single, consolidated tool for managing common management tasks.
The interface is organized into 3 main groups

System Tools - Provides access for managing your computer

Task Scheduler – Schedules Task
Event Viewer – Utility that tracks information about your hardware and software
Shared Folders – Utility use to manage shared folders, sessions and open files)
Device Manager – Utility use to manage your devices
Local users and groups – Utility use to create local users and groups
Performance – Use to analyze performance of computer

Storage - Provides access to managing your computer disks and storage devices

Disk Management – Utility use to manage your disks

Services and Applications - Provides access to services and WMI

WMI Control - Windows Management Instrumentation Control
Services – List all the services that your computer can run

Managing windows Vista User Accounts

Administrator - Is considered the highest in computer networking has full control rights over the network
Guest - Limited privileges

Local rights - only to the particular workstation
Domain rights - global rights anywhere within the Domain

Default Local Groups

Administrators - full permissions and privileges
Backup Operators - permission to backup and restore files
Guests- limited privileges
Power Users - less permission than an administrator
Replicator - supports directory replication
Users - end users with limited system access
Network Configuration Operators Group - have some admin rights
Remote Desktop User
- Remote desktop administration
Cryptographic Operators – supports cryptography
Distribute COM users  - com users
Event Log Readers – able to read event logs
IIS_IUSRS  - for web servers
Performance Log Users  - checks performance logs
Performance Monitor Users  - checks and monitors performance

MMC - Microsoft Management Console

MMC Windows XP
A Microsoft Management Console is the console framework for management applications.
Start> Run>MMC
MMC Console Modes
Author mode - Allows use of all MMC functions
User Mode-full access - Allows users full access to windows management commands, but they cannot add or remove snap-ins
User Mode- limited access - Allows user to create new windows, but can only access areas of the console tree that were visible when the console was last saved
User Mode - limited access, single window - Allows users to access only areas of the console tree that were visible when the console was last saved, but they cannot create new windows


Start>All Programs>Maintenance

Backup and Restore
Create a system repair disc
Help and Support
Windows Remote Assistance

System Tools
Start>All Programs>Accessories>System Tools

Backup and Restore

Character map


Contains information about your computer

Control Panel
Contains Control Panel Settings

Disk Cleanup
a utility, which goes through the system and deletes, unneeded files to free up disk space

Disk Defragmenter
a utility use to make your drives contiguous

Internet Explorer
Web Browser

System Information
Finds information on the hardware and software installed in your PC

System Restore
Monitors your computer for changes and creates a restore points that can be used to restore
the computer to a previous configuration

Task Scheduler
Enables to run tasks automatically

Windows Easy Transfer
Use to transfer files and settings from an old computer to a new computer



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