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Microsoft Windows Preinstallation Environment

Microsoft® Windows® Preinstallation Environment 2.1 is a small footprint of the Windows Server® 2008 environment that enables you to run tools in a 32- or 64-bit Windows® environment. Because Windows® PE 2.1 is based on the Windows Server® 2008 kernel running in protected mode, only a subset of features and APIs are available in this environment. This document is applicable to Windows® PE 2.1 only and is not backward compatible with previous versions of Windows® PE.

Windows® PE enables you to install the Windows® operating system, establish a connection with network servers, and perform hardware configuration using the SmartStart Scripting Toolkit. You can use Windows® PE to customize and configure your servers before the operating system is installed.

Windows® PE 2.1 can be obtained by downloading the Microsoft® Windows® Automated Installation Kit for Windows Vista® SP1 and Windows Server® 2008 from the Microsoft® website.