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Windows 11 PE Audiophile Creation Guide


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#361 samotc

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Posted 03 October 2022 - 07:52 AM

yes, the ISO created by Win10XPE program boots perfectly from the USB. I tried using the same USB to add the VHD to the boot menu. If you look at the bcd entries on the left image, the fist one "Win10XPE x64" label is the Win10PE boot and the 2nd entry is the VHD boot. When I restart the system, it boots straight to the Win10PE without giving a chance to select between the Win10XPE and VHD. There is a timeout of 10 seconds but it doesn't kick in. So I am a bit puzzled. In you case, do you have an option to select between all the labels that you posted in your left image when booting ? 

 

 

Make sure you use Bootice 1.33; version 1.34 does not save the changes made well.



#362 internethandle

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Posted 03 October 2022 - 05:16 PM

Hi, all, changing the subject,

You can kill the "winlogon.exe" process in Win11XPE audio:

Previously it is necessary to suspend the svchost.exe corresponding to "RpcEptMapper" and "RPC", so excluding processhacker, there are only 10 active processes left.

Fantastic discovery, samotc. It had not occurred to me to try and suspend RpcEptMapper/RPC’s Svchost process.

After doing so, are you still able to launch programs from Process Hacker? Does WinPE crash if you resume the Svchost process (unsuspend it)? I will try it soon.

Dev, anecdotally I seem to remember that I also had trouble getting a VHD to flatboot from a USB drive/stick. I always ended up flatbooting from a drive with Windows already installed on the drive. If you’re able, try to flatboot from a drive with W10/11 installed on it already, even if that means installing Windows on the USB drive you are attempting to flatboot from. Windows/BIOS can get easily confused when there are multiple Windows installs/Boot stores. It can be frustrating. Also, I assume you have already tried to enable CSM in your UEFI BIOS settings. In mine, there was also a setting to provide “legacy USB support” I had to enable when I got to the step of booting from Grub4DOS and a USB C to M.2 adapter, although that seems unlikely to be the problem.

Otherwise, you can try and provide screenshots of your VHD creation process to make sure nothing is amiss there with settings/etc.
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#363 Dev

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Posted 03 October 2022 - 09:33 PM

Dev, anecdotally I seem to remember that I also had trouble getting a VHD to flatboot from a USB drive/stick. I always ended up flatbooting from a drive with Windows already installed on the drive. If you’re able, try to flatboot from a drive with W10/11 installed on it already, even if that means installing Windows on the USB drive you are attempting to flatboot from. Windows/BIOS can get easily confused when there are multiple Windows installs/Boot stores. It can be frustrating.

@internethandle, that was the missing link. Thanks much. Using a current W10 installation and adding a VHD worked. Earlier I tried to add to an existing WinPE installation and an empty USB (as described by samotc) and neither of them worked.



#364 internethandle

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Posted 03 October 2022 - 10:14 PM

No problem, glad it worked out.

I’m pretty sure samotc has said he has gotten a VHD to successfully flatboot from a USB drive, but it remains a mystery what the missing link is there, since he says he’s done it on both a non-UEFI and a UEFI machine. In my experience it only takes one missing setting to cause a seemingly insurmountable problem with this process, so it’s probably something small one of us overlooked. There are other forums, like tenforums or mydigitallife, with a lot of Windows power users who could likely help troubleshoot, but as long as you’re able to get the VHD flatbooted, it’s kind of a moot point what drive it’s flatbooted from while you work on reducing/editing the image. It’s also easy to just use Bootice to delete the VHD entry from the boot menu later, if you need to.
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#365 Dev

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Posted 03 October 2022 - 10:34 PM

yeah, I am learning. Never being a Windows power user before.

 

 

So far, I am able to play music with Jplay KS using Jplay mini player. What a victory !!! Many thanks for all the help from samotc and internethandle, without which it wasn't possible.

 

Still can't use the Jplay femto over the network. WinPE networking seems to be working fine but Bubble upnp can't see the renderer/library yet.  Looking into it further.



#366 Dev

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Posted 04 October 2022 - 01:11 AM

well, I got jplay femto working with the vhd flatboot on a test pc. Next up is recreate the WinPE from the VHD. If everything works, then the follow up is to get my main music server working. 



#367 internethandle

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Posted 04 October 2022 - 04:56 AM

Fantastic discovery, samotc. It had not occurred to me to try and suspend RpcEptMapper/RPC’s Svchost process.

After doing so, are you still able to launch programs from Process Hacker? Does WinPE crash if you resume the Svchost process (unsuspend it)? I will try it soon.
.


Tried this out tonight -- to answer my own questions, this works without issue -- resuming RpcSs/RpcEptMapper's svchost.exe process after terminating winlogon.exe does not result in WinPE crashing — I had wondered if it would because, normally, terminating Winlogon (or resuming it after terminating Pecmd, if using WinXPE) would result in a BSOD. Winlogon.exe should remain in a suspended state (as per usual, which is done to allow Pecmd.exe etc. to be terminated) when it is terminated, at least if you built WinPE initially with Win10/11XPE. I would recommend resuming RpcSs/RpcEptMapper's svchost.exe after terminating winlogon.exe, since not having it running can result in many things breaking. Launching programs shouldn’t be an issue for this particular tweak - it is DCOM Launcher that can cause a problem there after it is terminated.

Anyway, the best news is that eliminating winlogon.exe is definitely an audible improvement, at least to my ears!

Thanks to samotc for the discovery.

#368 Dev

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Posted 04 October 2022 - 05:47 PM

anyway to change the system drive from X to C for a regular WinPE boot ? Maybe through registry ?



#369 internethandle

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Posted 04 October 2022 - 05:57 PM

anyway to change the system drive from X to C for a regular WinPE boot ? Maybe through registry ?

It looks like it’s a Pecmd setting — see the syntax at the post at the bottom of the page here. Unfortunately, I haven’t really waded much into changing settings there, so my knowledge isn’t great. Probably could try and ask on tenforums, although it’s hit or miss in my experience if someone will answer you, especially if they feel like the answer is readily available somewhere in the thread. They do appreciate it if you find a solution to your own issue and post it to the thread, though, it seems:

https://www.tenforum...dia-2-a-25.html

Your best bet might be to look through the Pecmd settings (pretty sure this is located in system32) while the VHD is mounted in “regular” Windows, open it up in notepad++ or similar and search for an area where the syntax looks like it’s assigning the drive letter to “x:\” then simply change the letter to the desired alternative, save and go into flatboot to see what happens. Pecmd’s settings are applied at startup.

Edit: it just occurred to me that some things may break with this method if you don’t change all references there for “x:\” to your desired letter. May not be worth the hassle, but it wouldn’t be impossible with a “Find and replace” command in notepad++. You could always venture into doing what samotc has done, which is building WinPE initially without using Win10XPE. I have not yet done this, however, so I can’t speak to what might happen with drive letter assignments.

#370 seeteeyou

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Posted 04 October 2022 - 07:40 PM

I guess that maybe it's somewhat easier to change the location of JPLAY rather than dealing with the default drive letter of %SystemDrive% then?

 

http://jplay.eu/foru...yclean/?p=60163

Then, I opened up regedit and searched for "JPLAY" with CTRL+F, and used F3 to cycle through all of the results. I changed every instance of C:\JPLAY to X:\JPLAY, except a few. The ones I didn't change were the ones relating to the Start Menu, the Compatibility Assistant ones that are in binary format, and the ones that don't have a drive letter (e.g. "\Device\HarddiskVolume3\JPLAY\JPLAYSettings.exe") that are also in binary format. Everything else I changed. There are filepaths that show up multiple times, like "c:\jplay\jplaydriver64.dll", but I found that after you change one the first time, the repeats get changed automatically. This process of editing the registry only takes 5 minutes or so.

 

It could be quite helpful to go through the entire post linked above.

 

 

 

SetDrive.zip should be dated July 2007 and not sure if that were still any good after a decade and half?

 

http://reboot.pro/in...1938#entry17055

Well I needed it for a project immediately, so I wrote a small script. Just give it the drive letter your drive mounts as in Windows, the path to setupreg.hiv and the drive letter you want it to mount as in the WinPE.

 
It reads the registry value for the requested drive, loads the hive and creates the registry key for the new drive letter. Then unloads the hive.
 
It did what I needed it to do. Hope it helps someone out. Script is written in Autoit because I am not a 1337 coder. Thanks again to MedEvil for the method.

 

 

 

https://www.pcreview...1/#post-1950457

In RTM/SP1 it would float to the next available driver letter, but with SP2 the drive letter in WinPE is hard coded to X:, there are no options to change this behavior.

 

I can't believe MS would hardcode the drive letter so deeply that it can not be changed, I know with the intruduction of WMI the registry needs a hardcoded reference, but surely this can be dynamic up to the point of creating the RAM Drive, even if this means rebuilding the sdi.

 

Quite a few forum threads were started over the years, not sure if they're still relevant?

 

https://msfn.org/boa...-c-or-anything/

 

This particular one seemed to have something to do with modifying a file called SETUPLDR.BIN

 

http://bbs.c3.wuyou....055&pid=1927465

 

Basically I spent (or more like wasted?) quite a bit of time on that stuff while in the end I just didn't even wanna bother with any of that.

 

 

 

I could be totally wrong, PECMD should be created by quite a few different guys from China

 

https://pecmd.net/thread-13.htm

 

Usually I would download the latest Insider Preview version of ADK from Microsoft on a weekly basis, then extracted the official Windows PE image that could be found inside the ISO image

 

https://www.microsof...siderpreviewADK

 

No PECMD whatsoever, though it's still always showing X: as %SystemDrive% after all these years.

 

 

 

http://jplay.eu/foru...-guide/?p=60964

Following these same steps with Win 11 XPE (22000.384) complete failure ----> WinXShell error: "There are no more endpoints available from the endpoint mapper."

 

If Win 10 XPE were still OK while 64-bit version of foobar2000 2.X might not work very well under Win 11 XPE at all, maybe we shouldn't spend too much time on troubleshooting at this point because *THE* most important RAM-Disk component still didn't get any updates yet

 

https://www.foobar20...iew/foo_ramdisk

 

I found the following post on AS and Nsxturbo ordered his Taiko Audio SGM Extreme a few months ago

 

https://audiophilest...comment-1203224

Yeah, two of the 12core Xeons as opposed to the 10 core. I’ve heard they are a little more incisive than the 10 core, but that has never been an issue for me with the SET amps. And now using Bughead Emperor music player with no network connection and Majority Clean and Lemonade(Pretty rudimentary user interface, but great sounding) playing through my new Lampizator Horizon DAC with a great tube complement, I really can’t see how the Taiko Extreme server can improve on this very much.
 
I’m really most interested in going to the Extreme for all the upcoming proprietary Software, User interface and interesting  Hardware solutions coming down the road. It doesn’t hurt that Emile has some pretty incredible systems on hand to test everything he and his team come up with, plus a wealth of customers with a wide variety of state of the art systems.
 
I am also very curious to have a direct comparison to see how well we have done with our DIY highly optimized servers compared to certainly one of the top commercially available servers available today!

 

Maybe we could simply stick with the latest version of Bug head Nontallion since it's still being improved on a regular basis, while the 64-bit version of SounDevil could also be yet another viable alternative
 
Soundevil newest 64bit coding to utilize multicore player with asio, native dsd and dsd upsampling. sweet sounding as good as bug head emperor without the long process.

 

IMHO it would be mighty interesting if Nsxturbo were happy to give Windows 11 PE a try on both DIY highly optimized server and Taiko Audio SGM Extreme.


#371 Dev

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 12:07 AM

It looks like it’s a Pecmd setting — see the syntax at the post at the bottom of the page here. Unfortunately, I haven’t really waded much into changing settings there, so my knowledge isn’t great. Probably could try and ask on tenforums, although it’s hit or miss in my experience if someone will answer you, especially if they feel like the answer is readily available somewhere in the thread. They do appreciate it if you find a solution to your own issue and post it to the thread, though, it seems:

https://www.tenforum...dia-2-a-25.html

Your best bet might be to look through the Pecmd settings (pretty sure this is located in system32) while the VHD is mounted in “regular” Windows, open it up in notepad++ or similar and search for an area where the syntax looks like it’s assigning the drive letter to “x:\” then simply change the letter to the desired alternative, save and go into flatboot to see what happens. Pecmd’s settings are applied at startup.

Edit: it just occurred to me that some things may break with this method if you don’t change all references there for “x:\” to your desired letter. May not be worth the hassle, but it wouldn’t be impossible with a “Find and replace” command in notepad++. You could always venture into doing what samotc has done, which is building WinPE initially without using Win10XPE. I have not yet done this, however, so I can’t speak to what might happen with drive letter assignments.

 

Thanks. I will do a bit more digging on this.



#372 Dev

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 12:14 AM

 

I guess that maybe it's somewhat easier to change the location of JPLAY rather than dealing with the default drive letter of %SystemDrive% then?

 

 

well, many program installer hardcode the installation directory to C: I think jplay is one example. it would have been nice if it used the %SystemDrive% environment variable and is probably the correct way of doing it. I already figured the alternative is to manipulate the registry which can get messy over time and would be the less preferable approach.



#373 Dev

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 12:18 AM

I am using the network with WinPE since I am playing through jplay. However, every time the system boots, the PE Manager widget pops up with different options of wifi, dynamic dhcp address, static address, etc and I select one of them.

 

Anyway to fix this and make it use a single option automatically instead of manually having to select one when the system boots ?



#374 internethandle

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 12:55 AM

The PE network helper widget shouldn’t be needed for network connection - I always just renamed or deleted its exe from flatboot, preventing its launch. As long as your Ethernet solution’s drivers are loading properly in Device manager, you should be good to go. If you need to change to static IP etc later (I do this to then kill the DHCP service/process), you can do so via netsh commands pretty easily in command line.

#375 Dev

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 01:38 AM

I am currently using DHCP. Ethernet drivers are loading properly but how do the network system know to run the dhcp client at boot ? or does it do automatically ?



#376 internethandle

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 02:35 AM

It does so automatically - DHCP (the Windows service) is enabled by default.

The PE network helper widget/program seems to be included to replace shell/settings functionality around Windows IP assignments etc. that is not available in PE but was available in normal Windows. Again, though, switching to static IP or other settings is possible through command line, if desired.

#377 Dev

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 02:58 AM

Ok, got it. Thanks. My ultimate goal is to run this headless without any manual intervention. Maybe need some startup scripts/cmds to get there, I guess.

 

For folks who are using network, can someone list the processes running in their system ?



#378 Dev

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 04:42 AM

once the WinPE boots, is there still access to the boot drive ? I am wondering how much of the sound quality is affected by the boot media itself ? Theoretically, since it runs off the ram, it shouldn't, right ?



#379 keith_correa

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 06:51 AM

anyway to change the system drive from X to C for a regular WinPE boot ? Maybe through registry ?

Try this:
 
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Control\WinPE]
"InstRootDrive" Change the existing dword value to the hex of the drive letter string you want to set to
 
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\WinPE]
"InstRoot" Change the existing string value to the drive letter you want to set to

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#380 internethandle

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Posted 05 October 2022 - 04:31 PM

once the WinPE boots, is there still access to the boot drive ? I am wondering how much of the sound quality is affected by the boot media itself ? Theoretically, since it runs off the ram, it shouldn't, right ?

When PE is running in Ramdisk, the boot drive is not accessible, no. I forget in flatboot, but I think it is? Easy to check.

In terms of sound quality, others have found using other versions of Windows with Ramdisk that the drive type used for loading into RAM does effect sound, as well as what USB port, if using a USB drive. So, for instance, in my case I now am using an Intel Optane M.2 drive inside of a USB-C to M.2 enclosure/adapter which I plug into my JCAT USB XE card when loading Win11PE into RAM. This sounds better to me than, e.g., a USB thumb drive plugged into a motherboard USB port. I am also using Grub4DOS to load into RAM rather than the built in WinPE Ramdisk loading method, which results in lower latency/better sound. You could play with loading into RAM from your Revelation Audio/JCAT Femto M.2 drive, though — probably would sound best, at least in theory. Most of this you should worry about only when you have your image tailored to your liking in flatboot.

I will try and re-post my list of services of what is needed for network/Windows audio later - it’s a bit outdated but I could manage, probably.
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