Now that Microsoft has shipped Service Pack 2 for Windows 2000, you’re probably dreading the installation of additional Windows 2000 servers on your network. You foresee all the time involved in installing Windows 2000 itself on the new server and then the additional time in either downloading Service Pack 2 or applying it to the new server across the network. If only there were a better way…

But wait! There is! With Windows 2000, Microsoft added the ability for you to create integrated installations that allow to you combine the current service pack files and the system files on your original Windows 2000 Server CD-ROM. From that point forward, when you install new Windows 2000 servers and use the integrated installation, Service Pack 2 will install seamlessly at the same time as your base Windows 2000 installation. In this Daily Feature, I’ll show you how you can create a Windows 2000 Server/Service Pack 2 integrated installation.

Creating an integrated installation
It’s all very simple. First, create a folder on one of your Windows 2000 servers in which to store the integrated installation. You can call this folder anything you want, but you should make it something meaningful such as W2ksetup. The easiest way to do this is to start a command prompt on your server, type md W2ksetup, and press [Enter].

Next, put your original Windows 2000 Server CD into your server’s CD-ROM drive. From the command prompt you just opened, copy all of the files from the original Windows 2000 Server CD to the W2ksetup directory by typing xcopy d:\*.* c:\w2ksetup /e and then pressing [Enter]. This will copy the I386 directory, as well as all of the subdirectories and files under, it to the server’s directory.

Next, you’ll need the W2ksp2.exe file that contains the Windows 2000 Service Pack 2 files. It doesn’t matter how you obtain the file; you can get it from the Internet or from a Windows 2000 Service Pack CD. Create a temporary directory on your server, and copy the W2ksp2.exe file into it. Next, extract the Service Pack 2 files from the file by typing w2ksp2 /x at a command prompt in the temporary directory and then pressing [Enter]. When you see the Choose Directory For Extracted Files dialog box, type c:\tempdir (where tempdir is the name of the temporary directory you created) and click OK.

After the files extract, type c:\tempdir\I386\Update\Update.exe –s:C:\w2ksetup. Doing so will cause Update to create the integrated installation. After it completes, you can use the files in the W2ksetup directory to install completely patched versions of Windows 2000 on new servers.

To put the integrated installation to use, you can either burn a new CD-ROM from the W2ksetup directory or create a network share for the W2ksetup directory and then connect to it over your network. You’ll run Setup for the integrated installation just as you would from your original CD. You can also use RIS to create a network distributable version of an integrated installation.

Creating an integrated installation using RIS
If you’ve used Remote Installation Services (RIS) to create new Windows 2000 installations, you know how handy it can be. You can also use RIS to create and distribute Windows 2000/Service Pack 2 integrated installations, as well.

Author’s note

This Daily Feature is only going to show you how to create integrated RIS images. It won’t go into the details of RIS itself. For more information about RIS, see the Daily Drill Down titled “Installing Windows 2000 with the Remote Installation Service.”

To begin, you’ll need an RIS image, but it doesn’t matter if those images are CD-based images or RIPrep images. Next, on the RIS server, click Start | Programs | Administrative Tools | Active Directory Users And Computers. In the left pane, on the Active Directory Users And Computers screen, click the container object that contains the RIS server. In the right pane, right-click the RIS server’s name and then click Properties.

When the Property page appears, click the Remote Install tab and then click Advanced Settings. When the Advanced page appears, click the Images tab and then click Add to add an OS image. When prompted for the image source, point to the directory that you created.

In the olden days of Windows NT, it was a time-consuming chore to create new servers. You had to first install Windows NT and then go back and apply the latest service packs to your new server. You can now integrate the latest service pack with your original unpatched versions and then create new servers that are fully patched from the start with a Windows 2000 Server/Service Pack 2 integrated installation.