Chapter 1
Microsoft does not support any upgrades to Windows XP Home Edition or
Professional from Window 3.x, Windows 95, or Windows NT 3.5 or 3.51
Workstation. Additionally, you cannot upgrade (downgrade) any Microsoft server
operating system (Windows NT 4.0 Server, Windows 2000 Server, Windows Server
2003) to any edition of Windows XP.
You must place sysprep.inf in the sysprep folder or on a floppy disk, which are the
default locations where the Mini-Setup Wizard looks for the answer file (it checks the
sysprep folder first) after you apply the image.
Performing Upgrade Installations
Windows XP supports several different upgrade paths. The easiest and most
seamless upgrades occur when you migrate from Windows 2000 Professional
to Windows XP Professional and when you migrate from Windows XP
Home Edition to Windows XP Professional. You can perform an unattend-
ed upgrade by specifying the
/unattend option on the winnt32.exe command
line. With this method, all the custom user configuration settings from the
previous operating system are carried over to Windows XP and no user
interaction is needed during the setup process. You can upgrade directly to
Windows XP Home Edition or Windows XP Professional from the follow-
ing Microsoft operating systems:
Windows 98 and Windows 98 Second Edition (SE)
Windows Me
Windows NT 4.0 Workstation with SP5 or higher
Windows 2000 Professional
Windows XP Home Edition (supports an upgrade to Windows XP
Professional only)
Planning the Upgrade and Verifying
Because a computer’s operating is critical to its proper functioning, you
should always treat an upgrade as a serious potential threat to the computer’s
well-being. Upgrades from MS-DOS–based systems, such as Windows 98
and Windows Me, are especially vulnerable to incompatibility problems. You
should review a computer’s current operating system, applications, and con-
figuration settings before forging ahead blindly with the install CD in hand
Installing the Windows XP Desktop Operating System
and clicking setup.exe. Check on the following items before performing an
upgrade to Windows XP:
Hardware and software issues—The Microsoft Windows Upgrade Advisor
(also known as the Windows XP Readiness Analyzer) can point out areas
of potential conflict and incompatibility with the current operating sys-
tem. You can run this tool directly from the Windows XP CD-ROM. At
a command prompt, type <CD drive letter>:\i386\winnt32.exe /checkup-
and press Enter to run the program.
Special disk controller drivers—For third-party small computer system
interface (SCSI) or Redundant Array of Independent Disks (RAID) con-
trollers, you might need to press the F6 key during the initial text mode
of the setup process. If you miss this selection and Setup continues, you
will most likely end up with an error specifying that the boot device is
inaccessible, requiring you to start the installation all over again.
File system options—Windows XP has three options to choose from for its
file system: FAT, FAT32, and NTFS. NTFS is the best option because it
supports compression, disk quotas, encryption, mount points, and
remote storage.
Software utilities—Windows XP employs a newer version of NTFS that
can cause conflicts with pre-XP versions of antivirus tools and disk
defragmenting software. You should remove such applications before
you perform the upgrade.
Windows 9x data compression—You must uncompress any drives that have
been compressed with either Windows 95 or Windows 98 compression
features such as DriveSpace or DoubleSpace. Windows XP is not com-
patible with these compression schemes. The same holds true for any
third-party data compression tools: be sure to uncompress the data and
then remove these types of utilities to insure a smoother upgrade experi-
Computer system firmware (BIOS)—As a rule of thumb, newer BIOSs
support newer operating systems better. Consider installing the most
recent BIOS update for your computer’s motherboard.
Virus scanners/antivirus software—At a minimum, be sure to disable any
antivirus utility during the upgrade installation. Often, it’s recommended
to uninstall the existing antivirus software, perform the upgrade, and

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