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I have the SP3 network install file, installing over a pristine original Windows XP installation.

When I run the SP3 install, it spends aeons estimating space for uninstallation and whatnot. I don't care about this and I just wanna get done with it and get back to being a mac snob.

I have System Restore disabled.

How can I make it install without saving all this uninstall crap?

(I have the cab files extracted manually, if it helps at all.)

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+1 for going back to being a mac snob – Jeff Leonard Aug 1 '09 at 14:28
up vote 6 down vote accepted

the SP3 install has a command line switch for /nobackup and it will not save any uninstall info if you use it. There are a few other handy options as well but I think this is the one you want. An example of the full command line is below. Simply do a run -> cmd and then change to the directory where your xp sp3 distro is living. Then run the command below (adjusting for patch of course) and you should good to go!

C:\Desktop\WindowsXP-KB936929-SP3-x86-ENU /nobackup
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Run SP3 installation with /nobackup parameter

WindowsXP-KB936929-SP3-x86-ENU /nobackup

for more parameters

WindowsXP-KB936929-SP3-x86-ENU /help
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/help doesn't seem to work. It outputs nothing and starts unpacking anyway. – kch Jul 31 '09 at 10:27

TechRepublic has a complete list of command line options for Windows XP SP3 including /nobackup /norestart and /overwriteoem

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