In my previous post titled Issue with MDT 2010 Update 1 and Windows AIK for Windows 7 SP1 Supplement, I mentioned some challenges if you wanted to use Windows PE 3.1 and still use Windows RE from a Windows 7 SP1 BOOT.WIM file. One possibility proposed for dealing with this is to manually modify the Windows AIK version so that MDT knows a new version has been installed. That sounds easy enough, renaming HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\ComponentStudio\6.1.7600.16385 to instead be HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\ComponentStudio\6.1.7601.17514.
I did try this out, and encountered two issues to note:
- Deployment Workbench doesn’t really like the change. After changing this key, you’ll get warnings from Deployment Workbench saying that the version of WIMGAPI (6.1.7600.16386) is different than the version of Windows AIK (6.1.7601.17514). There’s no workaround for this – you would just need to live with the annoyance of the warning, which will be displayed any time Deployment Workbench needs to use Windows AIK components.
- The Windows AIK team can’t support the change, primarily because it’s not something they have tested to see if there are any other unexpected side effects.
So while the workaround of editing the registry key may work, we can’t really recommend it.
For a longer-term solution, we have modified the Deployment Workbench code in MDT 2012 Beta 1 (see http://blogs.technet.com/b/msdeployment/archive/2011/06/01/microsoft-deployment-toolkit-2012-beta-1-now-available.aspx if you missed that announcement) so that it checks the version of the Windows AIK WINPE.WIM file, rather than checking the Windows AIK version in the registry. As a result, MDT 2012’s behavior is:
- Windows PE 3.0 WINPE.WIM present in the Windows AIK folder and Windows 7 RTM or Server 2008 R2 RTM source files in the deployment share? MDT will create a boot image from the Windows 7 RTM BOOT.WIM and it will include Windows RE.
- Windows PE 3.1 WINPE.WIM present in the Windows AIK folder and Windows 7 SP1 or Server 2008 R2 SP1 source files in the deployment share? MDT will create a boot image from the Windows 7 SP1 BOOT.WIM and it will include Windows RE.
- Any other combination? MDT will create a boot image from the Windows AIK WINPE.WIM file and it won’t contain Windows RE.