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How to Bypass OOBE When You Perform an Unattended Installation of Windows XP

Support for Windows XP has ended

Microsoft ended support for Windows XP on April 8, 2014. This change has affected your software updates and security options. Learn what this means for you and how to stay protected.

This article was previously published under Q294801
When you install Microsoft Windows XP or Windows XP Professional in a workgroup environment, when you start the computer for the first time, the Out-Of-Box Experience (OOBE) program runs by default. This article explains how to bypass OOBE when you perform an unattended installation of Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition or Windows XP Professional.
If you run Winnt32.exe to start the Windows XP installation, OOBE is disabled by default. However, if you use any of the following methods to start the installation, OOBE runs by default the first time you start the computer after Setup is completed:
  • You start the computer from the Windows XP CD-ROM, and run Winnt.sif from a disk.
  • You run Winnt.exe.
To prevent the computer from running OOBE, type following text in the Unattend.txt file:
For more information about answer files and performing an unattended installation, see the Windows XP deployment documentation Ref.chm Help file that is located in Support\Tools\ on the Windows XP CD-ROM.

Article ID: 294801 - Last Review: 01/15/2006 22:31:42 - Revision: 1.2

  • Microsoft Windows XP Professional
  • Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition
  • kbenv kbinfo kbsetup KB294801