WIN11 PE AUDIOPHILE "ULTRALITE" QUICK START GUIDE:
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Posted 13 December 2022 - 02:18 PM
WIN11 PE AUDIOPHILE "ULTRALITE" QUICK START GUIDE:
Posted 13 December 2022 - 09:53 PM
That's cool, now it's even easier to give Ultralite 20348 (i.e. Windows Server 2022) a try and then compare that to Ultralite 22000 (i.e. Windows 11) afterwards.
Here are the links for downloading + extracting winpe.wim
ISO image of Windows Server 2022 build 20348.1
Not sure if ISO images of Insider Preview were any good now? Here's build 25267 of winpe.wim
ISO images of build 25267
Posted 14 December 2022 - 09:31 AM
Posted 14 December 2022 - 12:12 PM
Hi samotc, I'd like to mention that build 22621 (i.e. Windows 11 version 22H2) or above might behave somewhat differently whenever we're logged on as the default SYSTEM account
Audio outputs didn't seem to work at all while the solution turned out to be simply logged on as the Administrator account at least once, and then for some reasons the default SYSTEM account would be back to normal.
Win10XPE could certainly get that handled but obviously we might prefer not to use that anymore, here's the actual script for that particular purpose
WimBuilder2 could be yet another alternative
Either build 25182 or 25197 with the latest version of WimBuilder2 seemed to be OK
Actually we could also take a look at either "Slim" or "SlimUltra" option as shown below
BTW, it's also helpful to learn more about what specific files could be removed manually and some examples could be found inside several plain text files insider these folders
Unzip password with only 8 lowercase letters
Posted 15 December 2022 - 05:59 AM
Well, i tried version 25247 without finding any sonic improvement, I also see several drawbacks, more files, more size, more services (related to server) and more processes. That is, more work to tune. I think, Win11 based versions are more operative for this "Audiophile PE" function unless there are other added needs, such as file server.
Posted 16 December 2022 - 08:19 AM
Well, i tried version 25247 without finding any sonic improvement, I also see several drawbacks, more files, more size, more services (related to server) and more processes.
Since you're familiar with NTLite, I found something related to removing a specific list of packages on their forum
Another moderator mentioned CBSEnum afterwards
Many packages aren't even visible to DISM by default, though we could change the visibility of those "Hidden packages" as shown above.
It should be fairly simple to remove many packages at once. We could use "Save package list..." to create a plain text file (e.g. Everything.txt) first, then remove anything that's genuinely required by foobar2000 or Bug head Nontallion etc.
After that, save that list of remaining packages as a separate plain text file (e.g. Uninstall.txt) before it's imported to CBSEnum with "Uninstall by list..." as follows
Maybe it's a good idea to get rid of unnecessary packages this way instead of deleting some files manually, since we're also removing associated registry keys accordingly. I checked the registry of winpe.wim and found 409 packages under [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Component Based Servicing\Packages]
66 of them turned out to contain WOW64, could we possibly reduce total number from 409 to somewhere between 150 and 200?
BTW, I checked the size of NanoServer.wim from Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview 5 and it's less than 200MB
437 packages were found
The size of ValidationOS.wim was also under 200MB
curl -N -r 729088-196235239 -o ValidationOS.wim https://software-static.download.prss.microsoft.com/dbazure/888969d5-f34g-4e03-ac9d-1f9786c66749/22621.1.220506-1250.ni_release_amd64fre_en-us_VALIDATIONOS.iso
I managed to find 528 packages
Let's see if we're able to reduce the size of our "Audiophile PE" and get even closer to the 200MB mark, most likely we should be able to remove at least dozens of packages inside the official winpe.wim from Microsoft.
Posted 16 December 2022 - 10:07 AM
Posted 17 December 2022 - 10:01 AM
2. We can only install 64-bit apps and drivers, I still haven't managed to get 32-bit apps to work.
WinPE SysWOW64 ~ 39 MBWinVOS SysWOW64 ~ 100 MBmore x86 layer
Here's what we're getting from the SysWOW64 folder of build 22000 of winpe.wim
Date Time Attr Size Compressed Name ------------------- ----- ------------ ------------ ------------------------ 2021-06-05 12:25:36 D.... Windows\SysWOW64 ------------------- ----- ------------ ------------ ------------------------ 2021-06-05 12:25:36 39730108 16273408 217 files, 24 folders
Only 39,730,108 bytes with 217 files as shown above.
We've got 2 similar indexes inside build 22621 of ValidationOS.wim and I'm only quoting the essential parts
Date Time Attr Size Compressed Name ------------------- ----- ------------ ------------ ------------------------ 2022-05-07 04:33:41 D.... 1\Windows\SysWOW64 ------------------- ----- ------------ ------------ ------------------------ 2022-05-07 04:33:41 104917926 43877569 615 files, 41 folders
Date Time Attr Size Compressed Name ------------------- ----- ------------ ------------ ------------------------ 2022-05-07 04:31:13 D.... 2\Windows\SysWOW64 ------------------- ----- ------------ ------------ ------------------------ 2022-05-07 04:31:13 104917926 43877569 615 files, 41 folders
104,917,926 bytes with 615 files, both indexes turned out to be identical except for the respective timestamp.
Most likely we'll have to extract some SxS packages from Windows Recovery Environment (winre.wim) or even install.wim of any "regular" Windows 11 ISO images.
Someone actually wrote a script to do that a very long time ago
[VBScript] Aunty Mel's Cheap And Nasty SxS Package Extractor (Updated 2013/09/30)
It's still available at the moment
If that weren't working for you, please take a look at this one instead
ATM, the most reliable package extraction tool is owouwu's pureSxS. It copies. But it needs python.
Validation OS looked quite interesting, the entire ISO image should be 339MB while WIM image itself would be 187MB
It's so compact to the point where we might have to stick with something that's able to play music from the Command Prompt
The only gui app I have so far found working is the calc.exe program copied from 32bit Win XP. And, so far, SemWare editor is the only working editor I have. Any version of notepad I have tried has failed, also the previously mentioned WinVi. I suspect a lot of dll depencies for windows gui apps are broken.
One of the Win10XPE users managed to get OpenSSH working just fine
Miles better than VLC for audio fidelity.
Posted 19 December 2022 - 04:29 PM
I found this pretty old version of mpv and the CPU utilization seemed to be extremely low when I was playing 48/24 FLAC files
Here's how I got mpv.exe to play my files in WASAPI Exclusive mode, though we couldn't even interact with that at all unless we're replacing mpv.exe with mpv.com
mpv.exe --ao=wasapi:exclusive --quiet --really-quiet --no-video --no-audio-display --force-window=no --vo=null "flac.flac"
I tried x64 version of foobar2000 v2.0 beta 17 and its CPU utilization should be going somewhere between 0.49% to 0.59% after I disabled as many options as possible.
Then I also downloaded a copy of mpv version 0.35.0 and it's released in November 2022
CPU utilization turned out to be somewhere between 0.16% to 0.21% with a fairly similar command
mpv.exe --ao=wasapi --audio-exclusive=yes --quiet --really-quiet --no-video --no-audio-display --force-window=no --vo=null "flac.flac"
So I forked the official repo on GitHub
After that, I disabled almost all Meson / WAF options except for the ones related to WASAPI and compiled my own version of mpv via GitHub Actions
Finally its CPU utilization still went from 0.13% to 0.15% after changing quite a few things, though it's actually consuming under 12MB of RAM.
FYI - everything could be found here and basically I just kept modifying 2 files listed below
How low does it really go and what's the whole point of being so OCD about it? Here's a little something that's posted back in December 2019
"What you really want to do is reduce your hardware active processing times as much as possible. The net effect is much like a class A amplifier, you have a higher baseline power consumption, but power draw does not vary much, and this is very good for a more “natural/relaxed” sound. I hope this makes sense But you do need a power supply which is very comfortable supplying the load. You really want the least possible variation in load, and higher cpu power / bandwidth systems are better at that with very low load music playback processes."
Posted 22 December 2022 - 06:47 AM
Posted 22 December 2022 - 04:08 PM
Hello! If you use Win 11PE with WinXShell, then at boot a black screen hangs for a very long time and only after 5-7 minutes does the desktop appear. Everything is fine in Win10PE or Win11PE with Explorer. Has anyone encountered such a problem?
Posted 23 December 2022 - 05:47 AM
Hi everyone, calmer now, I have done a listening test of Ultralite against Win11 XPE audiophile, clearly noticing an improvement regarding the soundstage that is wider and deeper, more focused and precise, with impressive microdetail and a very "analog" tone. The sound is very smooth edged without any grain.After a few days listening only to Ultralite, when I go back to Win11XPE Audio the differences become very noticeable.I advise people who are experts in PE to try it, I think you will no longer want to go back to XPE as is my case, despite the small discomforts regarding it.A greeting to all the partners of the forum, and Merry Christmas.
Edited by samotc, 23 December 2022 - 05:54 AM.
Posted 23 December 2022 - 02:23 PM
In order to fix samotc's reply, it should be easier to get started with a separate reply without actually submitting that.
Then copy and paste the entire text from samotc's reply as wrapped inside the spoiler tag below
Finally it should look just like this, then copy and paste everything when we're editing the problematic reply
Doing everything with keyboard and mouse should be fairly simple, though having to use the touchscreen on a mobile device would be pretty painful IMHO.
Regarding WinXShell, the author mentioned that quite a few fixes were implemented with the latest version 5.0.2
It's released back in November 2022
FYI - here's the link to version 5.0.2 with the required password, only 5 lowercase letters without any spaces before s / after l
(Simply put, let's pay attention whenever we're copying + pasting passwords.)
Please use translation software for translating Chinese to English accordingly.
Posted 23 December 2022 - 05:51 PM
Have you edited or tweaked the "pecmd.ini" file located in "\windows\system32" ?Excuse me, I made a mistake in the appointment, and I don't know how to remove it.
Hi! This happens right after Win10XPE without any tweaks when trying to boot. But, as it turned out, when I made flatboot, everything became normal, oddly enough, but the problem was solved. Thank you!
Seeteeyou thanks, I'll try
Posted 25 December 2022 - 07:53 PM
1. Regarding your first question:Mount the vhd on your host OSThen go to "windows\system32" and there edit the file "pecmd.ini"Inside the file look for the lines that refer to "explorer.exe" and "cmd.exe" , if you find a line that makes any of the 2 programs run, cancel it by introducing the "=" character (without quotes) after the character "//" which is at the beginning of that line.This will prevent such programs from launching.2. Regarding your second question:I understand that you can't install the applications or drivers you need, right? because I get the message "application can't run on this computer".This message appears because there are probably missing files in "windows\system32" for the applications and drivers you want to install, also if you use 32-bit apps you must have a "windows\SysWoW64" folder that contains the necessary files for these apps and drivers .The only way, that I know of, to find out what files you need requires the use of a program (ProcessHacker), go through the instructions a little higher in this thread and you will find out how to use it.A greeting and good luck.
Thank you very much. I was able to fix my problem in #1 question by following your instruction. For #2 question, I was able to install foobar2000 x64 beta and play music. But other than foobar2000 x64 beta, I can't install other apps (WinPE was created through your alternative instruction using Winre.wim) like Process Hacker, Fxsound >although they claim that it can be install in 32 or 64 bit OS. Anyway, Thanks once again for your help.
Posted 25 December 2022 - 08:34 PM
Posted 02 January 2023 - 02:16 PM
Dear samotc, 1st of all happy new year to you (and also to you fellow audiophile friends participating in PE builds etc)!
I was following your perfectly documented optimizing guides of Windows 11 PE builds in this thread, using initially the Win10XPE Toolset (like in your PDF guide in the first post of this thread), all the way to the above quoted ULTRASLIM AUDIOPHILE PE build. Thank you again, it really is miles above any sound I ever heard of any Windows.
Just one quick question regarding the optimization of WinSXS folder - the WinSXS folders marked in red below seem to come from a regular Windows 11 WinPE build 10.0.22000.194 (using for example the Win10XPE Toolset like in the first posting of you here). The two first common.controls folders are available in the "winpe.wim" which is renamed from ULTRASLIM "filad61cf00c94775125d186add4ac43371" file,
but all subsequent WinSXS folders which are according to your instructions are left to be alone, do not exist in the ULTRASLIM winpe.wim. The seem to come, as I said regular Windows 11 PE like in first post.
Step 1.Download the file "a6296c5a6eec9ca02b431ed0461b952d.cab" from the above addresses.Step 2.Extract (with 7zip, etc...) the file "filad61cf00c94775125d186add4ac43371" and rename it to "winpe.wim"(...) Step 3 - 7 are very clear and can be followed perfectly (...)REDUCTION OF SIZE:Step 1.Delete folder "SysWoW64"Step 2.shrink the winsxs folder leaving only the following folders:amd64_microsoft.windows.common-controls_6595b64144ccf1df_5.82.22000.1_none_271a8fad6a2d1b1eamd64_microsoft.windows.common-controls_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.22000.120_none_9d947278b86cc467amd64_microsoft.windows.gdiplus_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.22000.71_none_b636e470520ada89amd64_microsoft.windows.gdiplus_6595b64144ccf1df_1.1.22000.71_none_a5885354eb10b430amd64_microsoft.windows.i..utomation.proxystub_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.22000.1_none_ff5cb20bf269f1f7amd64_microsoft.windows.isolationautomation_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.22000.1_none_55e560d8935fd7e3manifestsThey are enough for everything to work, the size remains at 6.84 MB.
For example, the folder amd64_microsoft.windows.gdiplus_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.22000.71_none_b636e470520ada89 does not exist in "filad61cf00c94775125d186add4ac43371" aka our ULTRASLIM winpe.wim. Could you eventually please clarify the optimizing WinSXS folder? Thank you very much for your effort!
EDIT: I am not allowed to post screenshots as it seems?
PS. I am a longtime tweaker and (as you mentíoned it in one of your previous posts) I actually participated, like you, in the long-ago project of slimming Windows XP cMP / cics memory player - I was nagual19 back then and originated the idea of stripping shell32.dll of its "resource" components using resource hacker on audioasylum. This closes the circle ,)
Posted 02 January 2023 - 03:38 PM
OMG, we've got one of the OG tweakers here.
AFAIK winpe.wim from ADK seemed to come without any patches while all folders should be staying @ build XXXXX.1 (e.g. 22000.1) under most circumstances
Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.common-controls_6595b64144ccf1df_5.82.22000.1_none_271a8fad6a2d1b1e Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.common-controls_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.22000.1_none_557d351fac10d961 Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.gdiplus_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.22000.1_none_e5f3355926a31be2 Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.gdiplus_6595b64144ccf1df_1.1.22000.1_none_d544a43dbfa8f589 Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.i..utomation.proxystub_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.22000.1_none_ff5cb20bf269f1f7 Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.isolationautomation_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.22000.1_none_55e560d8935fd7e3
Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.common-controls_6595b64144ccf1df_5.82.22000.1_none_271a8fad6a2d1b1e Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.common-controls_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.22000.120_none_9d947278b86cc467 Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.gdiplus_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.22000.71_none_b636e470520ada89 Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.gdiplus_6595b64144ccf1df_1.1.22000.71_none_a5885354eb10b430 Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.i..utomation.proxystub_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.22000.1_none_ff5cb20bf269f1f7 Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.isolationautomation_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.22000.1_none_55e560d8935fd7e3
You will see a summary of your choices (#1 in next screenshot). The default setting is Download and convert to ISO (#2 in screenshot). An important choice is to select Integrate updates when available (#3 in screenshot). For instance, when creating build 22000 ISO today (July 2021), unselecting this will create a build 22000.1 ISO image, instead of fully updated build 22000.51 image.
Some audiophiles might insist that no updates should be applied at all in order to maintain the best SQ, go figure
Posted 02 January 2023 - 06:34 PM
Dear seeteeyou, really appreciate all your hard work (your links are always a gold-mine). Extremely insightful answers, you are some very bright companion!
Now I can understand all this,... could have looked more accurately for these exact folder-names in \WinSxS\ (search feature comes to my mind , oh well), I just was initially overwhelmed with the amount of folders residing there in the .1 build compared to the RTM .194 before typing my reply here)
Your explanation with maybe samotc mixing up the C:\ resp. X:\ Windows install bases makes perfect sense, now I am the last person on earth to want diminish his (and yours too!) effort with all this. You struck GOLD, regarding the sound quality, makes you think how much flavo(u)r different, more or less "bloated" Windows Versions (Server, Server Core, 10, 11, different patch levels and builds) have. WPE is the first one that lets the soul of the music perfectly shine through. IMO & YMMV, of course.
Anyway I now found every 22000.1 folder you mentioned in the ULTRASLIM winre.wim:
Kudos regarding OG tweaker status ,) ... well since ~4 years I was perfectly happy with russian Aplayer running on Server 2016 Core where music files go to a hyper-tweaked PCI ESI Juli@ with DEXA D clock and separate linear supplies straight (via I2S) to a AK4396 DAC with two pure copper foil capacitors bypassing any existing op-amp stages here.
Out came music, not sound, or so I thought. Now comes your tweaked PE iterations with MUSIC in uppercase and I can't be more happy.
Your links to PeterSt XXhighend comments are insightful - I am no programmer myself but could understand why initial builds may be advisable in case of sound quality, since the music PC is not connected to any network / internet I'm also not concerned with any security related issues.
OMG, we've got one of the OG tweakers here.
AFAIK winpe.wim from ADK seemed to come without any patches while all folders should be staying @ build XXXXX.1 (e.g. 22000.1) under most circumstancesWindows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.common-controls_6595b64144ccf1df_5.82.22000.1_none_271a8fad6a2d1b1e Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.common-controls_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.22000.1_none_557d351fac10d961 Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.gdiplus_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.22000.1_none_e5f3355926a31be2 Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.gdiplus_6595b64144ccf1df_1.1.22000.1_none_d544a43dbfa8f589 Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.i..utomation.proxystub_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.22000.1_none_ff5cb20bf269f1f7 Windows\WinSxS\amd64_microsoft.windows.isolationautomation_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.22000.1_none_55e560d8935fd7e3
I guess that maybe samotc meant to copy and paste from those folders inside X:\Windows\WinSxS (i.e. Ultralite version of winpe.wim) but somehow he copied them from C:\Windows\WinSxS (i.e. his "regular" version of Windows 11 21H2 build 22000.194) accidentally.(...)
Posted 02 January 2023 - 08:35 PM
Weclome aircondition! Great to have a cMP person around. Always helps to have people with experience with extreme Windows tweaking/stripping around to push things further. There aren't too many of us around anymore -- most have moved onto Audiophile Optimizer or similar, it seems. Hard to blame them in some senses -- this stuff isn't for the faint of heart and can take a lot of time and effort, so it's easier to have something like AO do it "for you," but the sonic results are superior, I think we can all agree, if you take the time.
I have yet to do an ultraslim build here a la samotc's instructions. Still running with a 12 process Win11XPE build loaded into Ramdisk with a JCAT USB XE card and Optane M.2 drive via a USB adapter. Have been too busy lately with hardware changes (new 300B tube amp, 10MHz OCXO master clock for my SOtM tX-USBultra Special Edition, etc.) to take the time to work on PE. I'm sure I'll get bored soon enough and venture back to tweaking, though.
Speaking of cMP days, man, I have not read the words "PCI ESI Juli@" in years! Very glad to see you're still getting use out of it. Is your AK4396 DAC a DIY build?
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