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Post-Sysprep Start Menu Issues on Win10 Enterprise

    Question

  • I've created a Windows 10 VM and created several user accounts.  Everything works great prior to running sysprep.

    I'm performing a sysprep /oobe /generalize w/ an unattend.xml.  The unattend.xml is creates an admin account and sets the most basic information to avoid the user seeing to many prompts on first boot.

    After the sysprep, the start menu is non-responsive.  It does not respond to clicks and pop up.

    I've applied all of the Windows updates. I've tried several solutions I've found online but nothing seems to resolve the issue.

    **The start menu behaves normally when logged into the user account that I initiated the sysprep from.  All other user accounts experience the issue with the start menu.

    Any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Doug

    Wednesday, September 02, 2015 8:19 PM

Answers

  • I found a way to fix this

    So for my setup I create two users and edit them before running Sysprep. they are named Kiosk and Office

    the issue is the built in apps in C:\users\Kiosk\AppData\Local\Packages have a reference that needs to be cleared out, I would assume sysprep should take care of this but it does not.

    so after I setup everything and sysprep is ready to go, I remove everything in the packages folder for both my users.

    then I run sysprep and capture the image.

    after windows installs and I login to the users for the first time, windows recognizes that the built in apps are no longer present and installs them for me...it takes about 3 minutes to finish on my machine, there is no indicator I just watched the Packages folder as it kept adding in the apps.

    afterwards start works, cortana works, and the built in apps work, all my config changes remain and I have a nice vanilla start menu.

    Chris, that is pretty much what I do except I leave the "ie" folder.... that is the only one that does not return from what I seen.

    Works good after that 3-6 minutes, but I want sysprep working like it did in the past. I think this is a bug and if the engineers knew about it they could fix it.

    I have reached out to my Windows Rep at Microsoft, and she is getting in touch with the engineers. I will update once I have any info.

    • Marked as answer by doug4772 Tuesday, December 22, 2015 6:20 PM
    Saturday, December 05, 2015 6:48 AM

All replies

  • Hi doug4772,

    I think the issue here should be related with the unattend.xml.

    Would you mind share the file through OneDrive?

    Regarding how to customize Windows 10, please check:

    https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/hardware/mt269765(v=vs.85).aspx

    Regards


    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help, and unmark the answers if they provide no help. If you have feedback for TechNet Support, contact tnmff@microsoft.com.

    Thursday, September 03, 2015 8:23 AM
    Moderator
  • I don't get why this was marked as "answered" by a moderator when clearly it is not.

    I am encountering basically the same thing, and in fact so are others.  Basically either Windows 10 and/or Sysprep is broke and the only fix is to hope that Microsoft will actually fix this problem.

    - Install Windows 10 and during the install create a local account.
    - Sysprep and capture an image and put it on another computer.
    - The account(s) that existed when you run sysprep has the Start Menu and Search Bar broken and unresponsive after you apply that image to a target computer and log in with that account.

    It does this every time and I'm not the only one running into this.  If you create a new local account after dropping your image, then that account works fine for the Start Menu and Search bar.  It's only for the account(s) you created while building your image that are broken.  This is preventing me from creating images for Windows 10.

    (Also, if you use CopyProfile, the link to the "Quick Access - Desktop" is also broken as it attempts to point to the build in Administrator account desktop.  Microsoft has yet to fix this either.)

    Friday, September 11, 2015 8:44 PM

  • - Install Windows 10 and during the install create a local account.
    - Sysprep and capture an image and put it on another computer.
    - The account(s) that existed when you run sysprep has the Start Menu and Search Bar broken and unresponsive after you apply that image to a target computer and log in with that account.


    Why do you need to create a local account on your reference image? You need to boot in audit mode and use the built-in Administrator account to create your image. All customization should be done on this account. 

    When installing Windows 10 from OEM media and you come to that screen where you are required to click on 'Use express settings', don't click on that button but press ctrl + shift + F3 to boot into Audit mode. The start menu and search always work for me by using this method.

    Monday, September 14, 2015 1:40 PM
  • Why do you need to create a local account on your reference image?

    Hi Denise. A better question is why is this broke in Windows 10, when it works in Windows Vista, Windows 7, Window 8, Windows 8.1 and when will it be fixed?

    The quick answer is we want to do this.  We want this local account to exist on all our workstations.  When building our reference image, we also want to capture a "pre-sysprep" image.  When building the way you reference using the CTRL+SHIFT+F3 to immediately boot into Audit mode, there is not a convenient way to capture an image prior to the final sysprep.  Also, we copy many, (many) hardware drivers to our computer since our image is to be used on 30+ model computers in our organization.

    We are not using OEM media.  We use our volume license version from VLSC.

    In a nutshell, this is a more thorough explanation of our build process.

    - Install Windows on a build computer and create a local account when doing this.  (We use a VM as our build computer.)
    - Install software, copy files, copy many hardware drivers to a specific folder.  (Our UNATTEND.XML file has been configured to reference this specific folder for hardware drivers.)
    - Power off the build computer off.
    - Capture a "pre-sysprep" image.  (Having a pre-sysprep image allows us to easily and quickly update this image in the future, without having to start completely over.)
    - Boot the build computer up.
    - Run sysprep using the "/audit" switch and reboot into Audit mode.  (During this bootup into audit mode, those hardware drivers we previously copied and referenced in our UNATTEND.XML file get 'integrated' into Windows.  Installing Windows the way you mention doesn't give you the opportunity to do this.  Thus, when you drop your final image to a target computer, those drivers will automatically load on our target computer.  This is important on many model computers to have the correct mass storage, NIC, etc. drivers get loaded.)
    - While in Audit mode, customize the built in Administrator account since we do have the CopyProfile option set in our UNATTEND.XML file.
    - Run sysprep with the "/generalize" and "/oobe" switches to finalize our image and we power off our build computer.
    - Capture a "final" image that is put on our target workstations.

    I have tested building a clone using the technique you reference, but it falls a bit short for us.  You are correct that the Start Menu and Search Bar do work, however the Quick Access link to the 'Desktop' is broken as that points to the build in Administrator account.  (This is broken no matter how you build your image as Microsoft has yet to fix this either.)

    Monday, September 14, 2015 2:17 PM
  • Bump.

    Are you still seeing this issue?

    We create a image almost the same way and are having the issue on the Win10 November build.

    Saturday, November 21, 2015 3:20 AM
  • Yes vs2015sv.  We are testing a different way to build to see if that works better.  Basically:

    - Install Windows and create a local account during the install.
    - Install software, update Windows, etc.
    - Run sysprep to put computer in 'audit' mode.
    - While in audit mode, delete the local account created during install.  Customize things while in audit mode and make sure to "remove" the Desktop link in the Quick Access area of File Explorer.
    - Run sysprep to generalize & oobe and shutdown.  FYI - In the sysprep answer file used here, we have synchronous commands to create the local account we want and to auto login with that account.  We also have CopyProfile set to TRUE in this answer file.
    - Capture the image.

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015 2:07 PM
  • I found a way to fix this

    So for my setup I create two users and edit them before running Sysprep. they are named Kiosk and Office

    the issue is the built in apps in C:\users\Kiosk\AppData\Local\Packages have a reference that needs to be cleared out, I would assume sysprep should take care of this but it does not.

    so after I setup everything and sysprep is ready to go, I remove everything in the packages folder for both my users.

    then I run sysprep and capture the image.

    after windows installs and I login to the users for the first time, windows recognizes that the built in apps are no longer present and installs them for me...it takes about 3 minutes to finish on my machine, there is no indicator I just watched the Packages folder as it kept adding in the apps.

    afterwards start works, cortana works, and the built in apps work, all my config changes remain and I have a nice vanilla start menu.

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015 8:24 PM
  • I found a way to fix this

    So for my setup I create two users and edit them before running Sysprep. they are named Kiosk and Office

    the issue is the built in apps in C:\users\Kiosk\AppData\Local\Packages have a reference that needs to be cleared out, I would assume sysprep should take care of this but it does not.

    so after I setup everything and sysprep is ready to go, I remove everything in the packages folder for both my users.

    then I run sysprep and capture the image.

    after windows installs and I login to the users for the first time, windows recognizes that the built in apps are no longer present and installs them for me...it takes about 3 minutes to finish on my machine, there is no indicator I just watched the Packages folder as it kept adding in the apps.

    afterwards start works, cortana works, and the built in apps work, all my config changes remain and I have a nice vanilla start menu.

    Chris, that is pretty much what I do except I leave the "ie" folder.... that is the only one that does not return from what I seen.

    Works good after that 3-6 minutes, but I want sysprep working like it did in the past. I think this is a bug and if the engineers knew about it they could fix it.

    I have reached out to my Windows Rep at Microsoft, and she is getting in touch with the engineers. I will update once I have any info.

    • Marked as answer by doug4772 Tuesday, December 22, 2015 6:20 PM
    Saturday, December 05, 2015 6:48 AM
  • Any Microsoft techs want to chime in?
    Tuesday, December 08, 2015 3:23 AM
  • Working on this, here is what I've come up with.

    - Install Windows 10.
    - During install, create a local account.
    - Update Windows, install software, etc..
    - Run sysprep /audit /unattend:C:\Windows\System32\sysprep\drivers.xml  (Note: the drivers.xml simply has the DriversPath to "auto load" drivers in it that references drivers we copied to a folder on the C: drive in our image.)
    - Delete the local user account created and used during the installation of Windows.  (We re-create this account later in our final sysprep.)
    - Customize profile in audit mode:  Change & arrange Start Menu tiles, run IE and set home page & settings, run File Explorer and remove the link to the "Desktop" in the Quick Access links, create a shortcut to notepad.exe and copy the shortcut to the \Users\Administrators\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\SentTo folder, and some other customizations, etc.
    - Run sysprep /generalize /oobe /unattend:C:\Windows\System32\sysprep\unattend.xml /shutdown (Note: the unattend.xml has various things in it, some of which are synchronous commands to open System properties and also have set the create a LocalAccount (and password) for the account that we wish to exist on the target workstations and also have that account set to be a member of the local administrators group, set this account as the one to AutoLogon with, and also has the CopyProfile set to TRUE.
    - Capture an image using Ghost.

    Deploying the image to the target workstation on initial testing is positive.  We end up having the local account we wish, it auto logs in with that account, and the profile customization seems to be carried over to any new user account that logs in.

    Tuesday, December 08, 2015 2:25 PM
  • Deleting everything but the IE package for each user account prior to sysprep was the correct answer for me.

    Even using the latest 1511 build of Win10 did not resolve this issue.

    Thanks for the responses!  MS needs to fix this issue.

    -Doug

    Tuesday, December 22, 2015 6:22 PM
  • Thank u mate! I searched for a solution for 3 months, nothing seemed to work, but your solution does the trick!
    Thursday, January 07, 2016 1:38 PM
  • Why do you need to create a local account on your reference image? 

    For kiosk machines (such as generic student machines at a college/university) , it's much easier to do it this way because you can customize the profile completely.  Some third-party programs (and even some of Microsoft's own programs) do not correctly transfer settings from the Administrator account in Audit Mode to the default profile when CopyProfile is enabled.

    Why?  Because these programs have registry settings and settings files that make explicit references to the Administrator account.  For example, rather than using %AppData%\ExampleProgram\config.cfg, the program might reference C:\Users\Administrator\AppData\Roaming\ExampleProgram\config.cfg, which is a folder path other users do not have access to.

    So, for standard employee machines, you may be able to get away without creating a local account pre-Sysprep.  For generic/student/kiosk computers, if you can't create the user account pre-Sysprep, you're in for a world of hurt.

    Saturday, January 09, 2016 2:42 AM
  • Although a work-around has been posted, this problem still needs a permanent fixed.

    What is the status of the fix being created for this problem?

    Saturday, January 09, 2016 2:44 AM
  • Haven't heard anything on this problem. Would like to know where we are with the bug fix.
    Friday, January 22, 2016 11:27 PM
  • Hello I did this step but customization did not go on even i try change background picture.

    It gives an error Administrator can not do this custumization .

    Wednesday, February 17, 2016 9:31 AM
  • Hello

    If we uninstall builtin apps like (sports, xbox 3d builder) do we get error in sysprep phase?

    We use education VL version and we do not need built in apps.

    Wednesday, February 17, 2016 9:57 AM
  • Thanks Chris. Your solution worked. I ran into same issue.

    In my case, I had to create a complete lock down image with two local user profile, one of which required a lots of customization and custom start menu and links which cannot be done in Audit mode or post sysprep.

    Microsoft needs to fix this. 
    Wednesday, February 17, 2016 7:45 PM
  • I'm currently experiencing this same issue, I've gone in and deleted all but 3 total packages within the folder specified previously; will this still work or do I need to remove EVERYTHING except the one containing "ie" in it?
    Tuesday, March 08, 2016 2:51 PM
  • I believe CopyProfile can break the Start Menu and search.  I've been avoiding it.  Maybe it works better in Windows 10 ITSB, where there's no apps.


    • Edited by JS2010 Tuesday, March 08, 2016 3:33 PM
    Tuesday, March 08, 2016 3:32 PM
  • I believe CopyProfile can break the Start Menu and search.  I've been avoiding it.  Maybe it works better in Windows 10 ITSB, where there's no apps.


    what are you doing instead?
    Tuesday, March 08, 2016 3:54 PM
  • Some things I can do without messing with the default profile, like the preferences for Chrome and Firefox.  There's a couple group policies/registry entries for IE11 too, although the homepage one I had to put in the default profile.  Edge (or any metro app) is impossible to configure defaults for (at least without some delayed, registry patching after login).  Other things I use procmon with the "category is write" filter to figure out the hopefully one or two registry entries I need to put into the default profile.



    • Edited by JS2010 Tuesday, March 08, 2016 4:27 PM
    Tuesday, March 08, 2016 4:03 PM
  • Haven't heard anything on this problem. Would like to know where we are with the bug fix.

    We're now into march 2016.

    I've tried to deploy W10 a few times and thought it as something I was messing up, but apparently this is a widespread issue. A CONFIRMATION of some sort from Microsoft would be fantastic. Loving windows 10 at home and I'm sure employees would like to have it here at work too...

    Thanks,

    Friday, March 11, 2016 3:53 PM
  • I have no idea where we are with a fix for this.  It's been like this damn-near a year now.  And we're not deploying Windows 10 to the majority of our computers until this is completely resolved.
    Sunday, March 13, 2016 2:41 PM
  • Agreed.

    MS, you've built a powerful tool, MDT. You've built an awesome new OS.

    Please fix this issue with sysprep, and allow us to use them both together easily. It's usually large companies that want to use local accounts on an image for legacy reasons and it's the reason mine isn't on 10 yet. I thought MDT2013 update2 might have had hope... We're still waiting for an answer...

    Thursday, April 07, 2016 1:08 PM
  • Agreed.  I've just run head-first into this issue myself today.  I was tearing my hair-out (and I don't have much left!!!) for a good few minutes wondering why my Start Menu and Task Bar were broken after SysPrep, until I stumbled upon this thread...

    I'm about to try the workaround of emptying the 'Packages' folders inside my customised user profiles now, but something official should really be done to address this.

    Friday, July 15, 2016 12:09 PM
  • Important: The Windows Firewall service must be running so that the packages are installed.
    Thursday, July 28, 2016 1:25 PM
  • I workarounded this issue with the help of USMT. Installed Win10 on my reference image and setup my local administrator account. Once this account was fully configured I stored profile settings locally with User State Migration Tool. Then I setup a temporary account to do the capture and deleted first local administrator account user profile. During OSD Task sequence I delete temporary account used for capture and reloaded profile settings of local administrator with USMT.

    Final result is deployed Windows 10 image with first local administrator account configured and working without post-sysprep issues.

    Monday, September 12, 2016 1:16 PM
  • Interesting enough, the EXACT same issues exist in Windows 2016.  Microsofts answer to the problem is:

    "We do not support copyprofile anylonger"  It is still an option for the xml but no guarantees to its success.


    Wednesday, December 14, 2016 7:27 PM
  • markkkkk, is there an official statement somewhere from Microsoft showing that they don't support CopyProfile anymore as part of the sysprep answer file process?

    I ask because it is working fine for me with Windows 10, and has been for quite some time.

    Also, if it's not supported, I'd ask Microsoft then why does this feature still exist in Windows System Image Manager when you create your sysprep xml answer files? (Or has it been removed in a newer version that I don't yet have?)  But more importantly, what is the replacement procedure that we should use in place of CopyProfile to customize the default user profile?

    Wednesday, December 14, 2016 7:42 PM
  • had same issue. Removing copyprofile from answer file worked...
    Tuesday, June 13, 2017 9:18 AM