MCSE Windows 2000 Professional Exam Prep

MCSE Windows 2000 Professional Exam Prep

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by Michael D. Stewart

Includes all curriculum objectives for the Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional exam (70-2. To give readers the skills they need to upgrade their certification to the Windows 2000 track. Offers a proven method for in-depth study, review, and real-life practice. Provides step-by step instructions on key topics for the successful implementation and integration of…  See more details below


Includes all curriculum objectives for the Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional exam (70-2. To give readers the skills they need to upgrade their certification to the Windows 2000 track. Offers a proven method for in-depth study, review, and real-life practice. Provides step-by step instructions on key topics for the successful implementation and integration of Windows 2000 Professional. Windows 2000 has many new features that must be learned by both the new user and users experienced with the prior Windows operating systems 3.51 and 4.0.

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Coriolis Group
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Exam Prep Series
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7.84(w) x 9.54(h) x 1.68(d)

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Chapter Two: Installing and Deploying Windows 2000 Professional

After completing this chapter, you will be able to:
  • Install Windows 2000 Professional
  • Automate the Installation with an answer file and Uniqueness Database File
  • Deploy Windows 2000 with third-party imaging software
  • Deploy Windows 2000 with the Remote Installation Service
  • Upgrade your operating system to Windows 2000
  • Apply update packs
  • Apply service packs
Installing an operating system is no small task, especially when you decide to replace the operating system of all your client workstations in a networked environment. The operating system is the basis for everything you do with your computer. If you make the decision to upgrade or roll out Windows 2000, make sure that you do extensive testing before putting the new operating system into production. Windows 2000 does support far more hardware configurations than Windows NT; however, there is no guarantee that your computer hardware will be supported.

Windows NT had a major disadvantage in that you could not upgrade the operating system from Windows 95 or Windows 98. This made the task of adding a new operating system daunting. Windows 2000, however, allows for upgrades from Windows 95 and Windows 98, though you will need to check your software to make sure it will work after the upgrade, and you may need to obtain update packs for the software.

Windows 2000 has also made some great advances in the area of automation:

  • The automated install is now much easier to set up and configure.
  • Windows 2000 now fully supports the use of third-party drive imagingtools.
  • Microsoft introduces a new technology called Remote Installation Service (RIS) in Windows 2000 Professional.

Checking the Hardware

Before deciding to install Windows 2000, make sure that your hardware supports the new operating system. Windows 2000 supports more hardware than any other Microsoft operating system. It is also a much larger operating system and thus re-quires more system resources than any other Microsoft operating system.

Windows 2000 Professional requires that you have at least a Pentium 133MHz processor. Note that this is a change from the Windows 2000 beta versions. During development, most of the documentation claimed that a Pentium 166MHz was going to be the minimum requirement. However, Microsoft does recommend that you have a faster processor than the minimum requirement. As is true of most operating systems, the faster the processor, the better. Windows 2000 Professional supports up to two processors on the same system.

Windows 2000 no longer has a build that works on the Alpha processor. Compaq made the decision to stop supporting Windows NT on the Alpha. They believed that the Intel machines they built with multiple processors were now fast enough to be equivalent to the Alpha processor. Although Microsoft is dedicated to supporting all current installs of their products on the Alpha processor, no new products have the Alpha build, including Windows 2000.

The minimum RAM that is required is 32MB; however, Microsoft recommends 64MB of RAM. Most of the time, Windows 2000 Professional uses about 62MB of RAM just for the operating system. This means that as you start running applications, you will see a considerable amount of paging to virtual memory. Although your system will still run, it is preferable, for better performance, to minimize the use of virtual memory. It is recommended, in a production environment, that you set a minimum level of memory to 128MB of RAM. Then monitor your systems to make sure that they don't need more memory allocation. Like Windows NT, Win-dows 2000 uses a great deal of memory, so the general rule is the more the better.

The minimum hard drive space required is 650MB of free space. If you are going to perform a network install, you will need more space.

You also need a VGA monitor or a monitor with higher resolution, a video card, a keyboard, and a mouse. If you install from a CD-ROM, you will need a CD-ROM drive or a DVD-ROM drive. If the CD-ROM drive doesn't support booting the system and starting the Setup program, you need a high-density 3.5" disk drive. If you are going to perform the install over a network, you will be required to have a Windows 2000 compatible network card, related cable, and access to the share point on the network that contains the installation files.

Microsoft only supports hardware that is listed in the Hardware Compatibility List (HCL). You can find this list on the Windows 2000 CD-ROM, in the support folder in a file called hcl.txt, which contains the hardware supported when the disc was burned. To find the most current listing of hardware, go to, which is updated often. If your hardware is not listed, it doesn't necessarily mean that it won't work. Many hardware vendors release their hardware and never get it certified, or they might be waiting for the process to be completed. It can take time for a piece of hardware to go through the process for listing in the HCL. If you have a problem with hardware that isn't listed, don't call Microsoft; call the manufacturer of the hardware.

Installing Windows 2000

The process of installing Windows 2000 is similar to the installation of Windows NT 4. If you have experience with Windows NT 4, you will see that most of the process is the same. Microsoft has added a few things to the installation procedure.

There are two choices of installation media. You can install Windows 2000 directly from the CD-ROM (the days of floppy disk installs are gone–you would need about 340 floppies to install Windows 2000), or you can install it from a network share. Regardless of the method you choose, the installation is the same. The high-lights of some minor differences are discussed as we go through the procedure.

If you are going to install from the CD-ROM, you have two ways to access the procedure. The first, and probably the easiest, way is to boot directly from the disc. To do this, you must set your computer's BIOS to have the system boot from the CD-ROM, and your CD-ROM drive must support the El Torito No Emulation CD Boot standard. If both of these requirements are met, you can simply put the disc into the CD-ROM drive and reboot the computer. Make sure that you watch the system at this point because Microsoft has added a twist here. In Windows NT 4, if you had the CD-ROM in the drive, it would automatically boot to the install program. Windows 2000 gives you an option. You must press a key to actually start the install program. If you do not press a key, the install program waits a few seconds, and then boots from the hard drive.

Tip: If you are trying to boot from the floppy drive, make sure that you remove the disc from the CD-ROM drive. The CD's boot program tells the computer that, if you do not press a key, to then boot from the hard drive, which bypasses the floppy drive in the boot order.

If you do not have a bootable CD-ROM drive or if it doesn't seem to work properly, you do have another option. On the Windows 2000 CD-ROM, you will find a folder named bootdisk. In this folder, you will find a file named makeboot.exe. You can run this file in two ways. If you just run the makeboot file, it will ask in which drive you want to make the disks, or you can set this automatically by adding a drive letter after the executable by typing "makeboot.exe a:". You will need four blank formatted high-density disks. This program puts the proper files on the four disks for you to use to boot the system and load the proper drivers to access the CD-ROM. Although this is a helpful alternative, if your hardware doesn't support a bootable CD-ROM, it takes considerably longer to install with the boot disks.

If you plan to install from a network share point, you must first copy the contents of the i386 folder from the CD-ROM to a folder that is shared on the network. You need to have a boot disk that allows you to connect to the network server and the shared folder. If you are running Windows 95, 98, or Windows NT, run winnt32.exe. If you are running any other operating system, run winnt.exe.

Note: For those of you familiar with Windows NT, recall that when performing an install, you ran winnt.exe if you were running an operating system other than Windows NT. With Windows 2000, Microsoft has changed the Winnt32 executable so that it runs under Windows 95 and Windows 98.

Whichever way you decide to run the install, Windows 2000 starts the Setup wizard. After you confirm that you want to install Windows 2000, you are asked to choose a partition on which to install the operating system. You can delete and create parti-tions at this point. If the partition you choose to install on has not been formatted, you are asked whether you want to format the partition as FAT or NTFS. If you choose to format the partition as FAT, Windows 2000 formats the drive as FAT16 if it is smaller than 2GB or as FAT32 if the partition is larger than 2GB. After the partition is formatted, the Setup program starts copying files to the partition. The default location for the operating system is the \winnt folder. Once Setup has finished copying the files, the system automatically reboots.

After the system has rebooted, a GUI-based Setup wizard runs. This wizard takes you through the process of entering the proper information for your setup. You are required to enter your name and organization and set the date, time, and regional settings. You also need to enter a computer name and set a password for the administrator account. In the networking components section, you are required to verify that the proper network adapter was found by the system, and then select additional network components that you need to connect to your network. After you customize the install to your situation, Windows 2000 then copies the required files, saves all configuration information, and removes all temporary files that were needed by the Setup program. Now, the computer restarts, and you are ready to log in and customize your install.

The following is a list of the steps in the setup process:

  1. Press a key to boot from the CD-ROM, or type "winnt.exe" or "winnt32.exe" for a network install.

  2. Press Enter to set up Windows 2000, or press R to start the emergency repair process.

  3. Press F8 to accept the Licensing agreement.

  4. Configure the partitions on the hard drive and choose which partition will contain the system files. If you create a new partition, the Setup program asks whether you want to format the partition as FAT or NTFS.

  5. Next, the Setup program copies some files to the hard drive and reboots the system, ending the text mode portion of Setup.

  6. The GUI portion of Setup continues.

  7. Setup begins to detect your computer hardware (this can take quite a while, so be patient).

  8. You are then asked to set the regional settings for the computer. You need to select the system or user locale as well as the keyboard layout.

  9. Enter you name and organization.

  10. Enter your CD-KEY.

  11. Next, you are asked to enter a computer name. Windows 2000 generates a computer name by using your organization name, adding a dash, and then adding 13 autogenerated characters–for example, xyzcompany-GH38DJE63HQD8. You also need to enter a password for the administrator account.

  12. Verify the date and time, and set your time zone information.

  13. The network services install starts next. You are asked whether you want to use the typical or custom settings. If you choose custom, you are then asked to add any clients, protocols, or services that are necessary.

  14. At this point, you can connect to a domain or workgroup. If you connect with a domain, you must have a computer account in the domain, or you can create one by entering a username and password of a domain account that has permission to create computer accounts.

  15. Setup then copies the files that it needs to install the components you have selected.

  16. After some final tasks are completed, Setup installs Start Menu items, registers components, saves settings, and removes all temporary files.

  17. Setup finishes and reboots the system.

  18. Setup then presents a dialog box, asking whether you want all users to enter a login and password, or if you want the system to automatically log on a user.

  19. Setup then finishes.

Automatic Installation Options

Deploying a new operating system can become a major chore. The more workstations in your network, the larger the chore becomes. If you only have five computers in your network, you might be better off just going through the install process on each one. If you have 5000 computers, it could take a long time to roll out Windows 2000. Microsoft recognized this problem and worked hard to come up with a number of options to automate the process of setting up Windows 2000 as your desktop operating system of choice.

Automated Installation Scripts

The first way that Microsoft has given us to install Windows 2000 is to create automated scripts to answer all the questions in the Setup program. Although this won't make the Setup program run faster, you can run the script on multiple computers and install the operating system with little or no user intervention.

To create an automated install, you must have an answer file. This file can be either your best friend or your worst enemy. There are hundreds of settings for this file. Listing 2.1 shows an example of a very basic answer file....

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MCSE Windows 2000 Professional Exam Prep 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
who says u cant pass this test without 'hands on experience?' i'm proud to say that reading a book is all you needed for this one. I read the prep and then the cram book and took the test and passed. im sure it gets harder.. but for the 70-210 test, this book makes it cake.