windows 7 activation key failure reading from unattend file


  • We are a school district using Microsoft MDT 2102 to deploy windows 7 enterprise images.  During the process as it is first entering windows the deployment process fails with an error message:  "windows could not parse or process the unattend answer file for pass [specialize] the settings specified in the answer file cannot be applied. the error was detected while processing setting for component [microsoft windows_shell_setup].

    we have a VLK license key in the answer file.

    this process worked fine until 4/2013.  at that time the build number of windows 7 enterprise changed.

    we would welcome any insight anyone has.



    Brian P Collins

    Tuesday, June 18, 2013 11:13 PM

All replies

  • The best way to troubleshoot those errors is to boot into Windows PE on the failed machine and look at the setup logs.  I have seen this error several times and it can be any invalid value in the Windows_Shell_Setup Unattend file that is run during the Specialize phase. The most common is an invalid ComputerName.   The files below can be investigated for the failure:

    C:\WINDOWS\setupapi.log Contains information about device changes, driver changes, and major system changes, such as service pack installations and hotfix installations.

    Note This log file is used only by Microsoft Windows XP and earlier versions.
    C:\$WINDOWS.~BT\Sources\Panther\setupact.log Contains information about setup actions during the installation.
    C:\$WINDOWS.~BT\Sources\Panther\setuperr.log Contains information about setup errors during the installation.
    C:\$WINDOWS.~BT\Sources\Panther\miglog.xml Contains information about the user directory structure. This information includes security identifiers (SIDs).

    Contains information about the initial capture of devices that are on the system during the downlevel phase.

    MDT Task Sequence Duplicator Application Bundle Duplicator

    Wednesday, June 19, 2013 12:47 AM
  • Could you post your ZTIGather.log?  More often than not, this error is a result of an invalid name being given to the computer.

    David Coulter | | @DCtheGeek

    Wednesday, June 19, 2013 3:12 AM