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Article ID: 286647 - Last Review: January 10, 2006 - Revision: 1.2

This article was previously published under Q286647

SUMMARY

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"Read First" Release Notes
Windows XP
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CONTENTS
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MORE INFORMATION

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1.0 Read Me First
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Before you install Windows XP, print and read this document for critical preinstallation information concerning this release. For the most up-to-date list of supported hardware, see the Hardware Compatibility List at the Microsoft Web site (http://www.microsoft.com/). In addition, print and read the following files located in the \docs folder on your Windows XP compact disc (CD):

* Setup instructions

* Release notes (relnotes.htm), important compatibility and postinstallation information.

New features are described in detail in Windows XP Help and Support Services. To open Help and Support Services, after completing Setup, click Start, and then click Help and Support.


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2.0 System Requirements for Installation
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For the full list of system requirements, see the Setup instructions for your operating system referenced in the readme.htm file on your Windows XP CD.


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3.0 Preinstallation Notes
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Before you install Windows XP on your computer, be sure to read this section. This section contains information about issues that affect the installation process. By using this information to perform your installation, you can ensure that the installation process proceeds smoothly and that Windows XP functions correctly.


3.1 Windows Product Activation (WPA)
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Products: Windows XP Home Edition, Windows XP Professional only

If you are prompted to activate your installation of Windows XP, defer activation until you have completed planned upgrades or changes to your computer's FIXED hardware and their device drivers. Otherwise, you may need to reactivate after making such changes. FIXED hardware/drivers include the first instance of devices such as video, network (excluding modems), SCSI, hard drives, CD-ROM/DVD, and system memory. USB or other removable devices (such as cameras and printers) do not affect activation.


3.2 Using Passwords
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3.2.1 Password Backup Disk
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Products: Windows XP Home Edition, Windows XP Professional only

If you created a password backup disk for a previous version of Windows, this process has changed. Re-create your password backup disk for Windows XP.


3.2.2 Restrictions on the Use of Blank Passwords
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Windows XP has a new default security feature that helps protect users with blank passwords from network-based attacks. Users who do not password-protect their accounts can only log on at their physical computer console: the monitor, keyboard, and mouse that is physically connected to their computer. This restriction only applies to local user accounts, not to domain user accounts.

Caution: If your computer is not in a physically secured location, you should assign strong passwords to all local user accounts. Failure to do so allows anyone with physical access to the computer to log on using a user account that does not have a password. This is especially important for portable computers, which should always have strong passwords on all local user accounts.


3.3 Software Compatibility Issues
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3.3.1 Message Queuing
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Products: Windows XP Home Edition only

Message Queuing is not supported on Windows XP Home Edition. If you are upgrading from Windows 95, Windows 98, or Windows Millennium Edition computers running MSMQ version 1.0, consider upgrading your computer to Windows XP Professional.




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4.0 Copyright
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This document provides late-breaking or other information that supplements the Windows XP documentation.

Information in this document, including URL and other Internet Web site references, is subject to change without notice and is provided for informational purposes only. The entire risk of the use or results of the use of this document remains with the user, and Microsoft Corporation makes no warranties, either express or implied. Unless otherwise noted, the example companies, organizations, products, people and events depicted herein are fictitious and no association with any real company, organization, product, person or event is intended or should be inferred. Complying with all applicable copyright laws is the responsibility of the user. Without limiting the rights under copyright, no part of this document may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise), or for any purpose, without the express written permission of Microsoft Corporation.

Microsoft may have patents, patent applications, trademarks, copyrights, or other intellectual property rights covering subject matter in this document. Except as expressly provided in any written license agreement from Microsoft, the furnishing of this document does not give you any license to these patents, trademarks, copyrights, or other intellectual property.

(c) 2001 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

Microsoft, MS-DOS, Windows, and Windows NT are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries.

The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.



APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition
  • Microsoft Windows XP Professional
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