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Unattend.xml Error When Deploying Windows Using MDT 2012

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For the last couple of days I have been fighting with a setup that uses WDS +MDT2012U1 to deploy Windows to some workstations.

Everything was working smoothly until the last step, were the computer parses the unattend.xml file and auto-configures the initial setup. The error was a ver generic:

“Unattend.xml Error - Could not parse or process for pass [specialize]”

Initially I thought that there was something wrong with the .wim file I was deploying. Maybe I missed something, or included some corrupted driver… But then I noticed that this error only happened when the .wim file I was deploying was an updated Windows 7. Deploying a plain out of the DVD OS worked just fine. This is when I started to think that MSFT had screwed up something in the MDT.

After a ton of Google searches I found that pressing shift+F10 in the error window opens a command prompt. Then typed notepad and navigated to C:\Windows\Panther\ and checked the logs. The error clearly stated that it could not apply the boolean property IEWelcomeMsg. All this because of IE10

Eureka! three days later I had found the problem!

Thing is, MDT does not allow you to remove the IEWelcomeMsg property from the unattend.xml file using the GUI. So to fix this edit your DeploymentShare\Control\TSName\unattend.xml and get rid of the whole line.

Now you know it, if you deploy a Windows image with IE10 using MDT 2012 Update 1 you have to manually apply this fix.

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