Understanding the new deployment tools and how they interconnect is the first step in beginning a Windows Vista deployment project. Figure 3-1 illustrates the Windows Vista deployment platform. At the lowest tier are Windows Imaging (.wim) files, which are highly compressed, file-based operating system images.
Figure 3-1. Windows Vista deployment platform components.
At the second tier are answer files. Earlier versions of Windows had numerous answer files, including Unattend.txt and Sysprep.inf, to drive the deployment process. Windows Vista uses a single XML-based answer file, Unattend.xml, to drive all of its configuration passes. ...