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Windows 7: Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite

17 Jun 2016   #1
videobruce

Win7 x64 & XP
 
 
Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite

I'd like to start out by thanking this forum for providing a workable platform to create a thread as this, since without this, I wouldn't of been able to do so.
Specifically;
1. Ability to edit a post made in the distant past to correct typos and/or make corrections & additions,
2. Ability to add decent size attachments withing the post without going thru the hassle of uploading to some image server, then linking them to the post which doesn't always work.


It's amazing just how many pieces of software there are out there that have little and/or poor documentation. Many border on useless ate best. What little is shown raises more questions than it answers. RT7 Lite is no exception. Showing various screen with little written about them is little help without explaining what each entry is about and the choices available.
The only explanation I can figure is the author(s) seem to think all the users are at their level so documentation isn't needed. Or, they the user figure out the program himself.

There are a number of similar programs out there from free to (now) pay. They all allow reducing the installation size and to a limited extent (very limited with some) allow 'tweaking' which to me is the most important. After all, deleting something usually isn't that hard. Getting Windows to look like Win 2000, better known as the "Classic Look" is another story.

I have tried many of the others. They are fail to meet expectations mostly for their very poor interface (specifically one) and/or lack of tweaking ability which one author doesn't seem to think is important.

For this program, unfortunately, support has dropped a few years ago for this program, but after literary spending weeks using this, I prefer this to the others in spite of it's quirks.

RT7 Lite is available thru a few 'free software' sharing sites: Softpedia & MajorGeeks for starters. There are two versions, both almost identical in appearance and operation (v1.7 & v2.6beta). Other than a few changes in the order of some of the selections, I really don't see much of a difference.

Other than a copy of a Windows 7 ISO with SP1 integrated, the only additional programs needed are "Unlocker" (to manually delete specific folders within the extracted O/S installer) and your un-packing progarm. I use 7-Zip.

My goals are to reduce the unwanted M$ bloat and tweak the O/S as much as possible to return it back to the Classic" look (Win 200o, XP Pro Classic). Some have reduce the install down to around 750MB, but I feel that is pushing it. I have gotten it down to around 1.5 GB which isn't that bad. This is without those security updates that bring ti back up to around 2GB. I don't want or need all of these 'gimmicks' that M$ insists coming out with to sell you a new O/S (like 8 & 10).

The items checked for change, addition or deletion are ones I did (some were changed from when those screen shots were taken). This will depend on just what you do with your PC.

I now do is try to find as many "portable' application versions as I can that I use. Create folders for them and add all of those to a single folder that I just C&P in the root of 'C' just like they are under "Program Files". The only annoying part is creating separate Start Menu shortcuts for each program.
Portable programs are not 'installed' (for the most part thou a few do add files in the user directory). You run them as usual, configure them as usual, then you can save them for further installs or in other PC's without all the hassle of starting from scratch )with ones that don't have separate config files).


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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17 Jun 2016   #2
videobruce

Win7 x64 & XP
 
 
Meaningful corrections & additionas are welcome

Software is only ones & zeros. You can't 'break' anything. If something doesn't work, scrap that version and try again. You will not get it right the first time unless you have no expectations.

You can't tweak everything, most you will have to do after the modified O/S is installed. It's a trial and error (mostly error) process.


1. I find it best to copy an extracted (uppacked) Win7 w/sp1 ISO to a SSD (if you have one). You can use the ISO, but it takes longer.

2. Be sure you have a dedicated original extracted copy of W7 sp1 in a safe place. Do not use that for your source since it will be overwritten.

3. Place the needed RT7 folders in the root of that drive on a partition w/o a O/S installed.

4. The more you call on the program to do, the longer the process. Adding updates (I had 106 security only updates) at least doubles the time.

Note: All of these attachments can be opened in a separate tab and saved to be printed out for your convenience.

.


Attached Thumbnails
Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-01-main-menu-opening-screen-vert1.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-02-option-iso-path-vert.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-03-program-open-script-error-ignore.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-04-open-session-vert.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-05-slim-down-using-unlocker.jpg  

My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Jun 2016   #3
videobruce

Win7 x64 & XP
 
 

The list that is in pale orange was originally from Winterstorm the author of RT7 Lite. They were edited by PhSMu. I added comments and enhanced the colors since there were very had to decrypt especially the two shades of red.
There are items you can remove as in delete. Here you have to be careful. Once there are gone, for all intensive purposes they are gone (unless you are really good )

The sizes of the files that are in parentheses I question. These are what RT7 reports. One is reported to be 1GB, that can't be correct.

On the plus side, this is some of the many places where you can get rid of the MS 'bloat'. Just about just all the programs that are in the O/S (that aren't the O/S itself) are available elsewhere. Always better and usually smaller.

The screen that allows adding specific drives is an option that I use sparingly. Only basic components that are not already in the O/S (Network cards for example) I bother with. Surely not video card drivers since they change so often are are large in size.

I did try a number of drivers at once, but some did not install so it appears there are limits to what and/or how many you can add.


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Attached Thumbnails
Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-06-wud-no-list-found-vert.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-07-integration-add-drivers.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-08-what-keep.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-09a-what-keep-vert.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-10-what-keep.jpg  

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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17 Jun 2016   #4
videobruce

Win7 x64 & XP
 
 

Services are another thing. Here, it may be better to just let 'Black Vipers' tweaks (the reference bible of services for over 15 years) disable those services (in later steps).

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Attached Thumbnails
Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-11-what-keep.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-12-what-keep.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-13-what-keep.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-14-what-keep.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-15-what-keep.jpg  

My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Jun 2016   #5
videobruce

Win7 x64 & XP
 
 

Most of the accessories & drivers you can remove except the 'base' drivers. Again, just be sure you don't remove what you need.

Take notice to all the arrows & notes that I added to the screen shots. Especially to the last screen where the option to choose Black Vipers custom registry settings. These do NOT remove anything, they only change the action from Automatic to Manual or Disable.
I wind up with around 30 processes running (which are still too many, but unfortunately they have to run ).

If you aren't familiar with BV, he has his own site and detailed lists of all the processes with their default settings. I used his knowledge ever since Win 2k.

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Attached Thumbnails
Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-16a-what-keep-vert.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-18-features-removal-labeled.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-19-features-removal-vert.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-20-tweaks-desktop-vert.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-21-security-vert.jpg  

My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Jun 2016   #6
videobruce

Win7 x64 & XP
 
 

Towards the bottom of this post are three condensed pages of BV's Services configurations for reference. I choose "Bare Bones" to allow the least amount of overhead.
Again, nothing is removed, you can always change things after you install the O/S. (assuming you didn't actually remove them previously)

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Attached Thumbnails
Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-22-tweaks-services-1-vert.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-23-tweaks-services-vert.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-24-tweaks-system.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-25-black-viper-services-1.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-25-black-viper-services-2.jpg  

Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-25-black-viper-services-3.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Jun 2016   #7
videobruce

Win7 x64 & XP
 
 

There is an option to add registry tweaks. It can only be added as a single file. The problem I found which is similar to adding multiple drivers is, not all registry entries 'take'. Again, no pattern. I'm not sure if it is the order, the number or the specific ones involved. It may be a combination of that.
Try a few and see how it works. Pick the fixes for the worst annoyances.
I wouldn't waste too much time here since it takes seconds to manually merge registry files once you are in the O/S.

Lastly, here are where many of the visual tweaks are found. This is the final stretch. You can change images to two out of the four pre-desktop screens. The other can be changed afterwards. I wouldn't bother with adding wallpaper since that can be done afterwards also.

The last screen offers options to burn a copy to optical media which I use to do, but now I don't bother. I use a formatted bootable USB stick to copy the resulting folders to making the actual loading the O/S faster. You can always make bootable copies later.

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Attached Thumbnails
Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-26-tweaks-custom-registry-vert.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-27-unattended-general-vert.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-28-customization-wallpaper-vert.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-29-customization-gadgets.jpg   Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-30-log-intergration.jpg  

Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-31a-optional-iso-create-image-vert.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Jun 2016   #8
videobruce

Win7 x64 & XP
 
 

Corrections & additions are welcome.


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My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Jun 2016   #9
videobruce

Win7 x64 & XP
 
 
Unhandeled exception has occured

I have not been able to narrow down where the problem is, only to say it appears to be when you re-use the "previous session" more than a few times. Since this is only a text file, I don't see how that can be a issue, but that it when I have had the problem.

Further, making matters worse, you don't know about this untill the very final steps in the process. The program crashes out of nowhere which means that try gets deleted, you can't pick up where you left off.
This was/is very frustrating as there are no indicators leading up to the problem. I tried numerous variations of the functions & procedures, but nothing seems to point to what is doing this.

From what the error message says (typical, mostly meanless M$ error message) RT7 seems to be locking a O/S file that it needs to modify even thou it is not an actual active file.

Using the previous session a 2nd, maybe a 3rd time seems to be fine. Past that is when the problem shows. I even loaded a bare O/S and tried the program there using a multi-used config file, but I still got the error.

Hopefully you won't have this problem, when I used this three years ago, I didn't have the issue.


Attached Images
Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite-unhandeled-exception-has-occured.png 
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Detailed procedure using RT7 Lite




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