Windows PE to rule them all
For a while now, Windows PE (Pre-installation Environment) has been the deployment tool of choice for various organisations. However, you need to be a Software Assurance partner with Microsoft in order to get access to this tool. This is no longer the case under Vista: you can now download Windows PE 2.0 from Microsoft’s Web site and use it freely to deploy licensed copies of Vista. Windows PE 2.0 offers better performance from 32-bit and 64-bit networking stacks and tools. It also supports tools such as Windows Scripting Host and VBScript.
Much like Vista, Windows PE 2.0 comes as an image that is componentised, and can be serviced both online and offline. While it offers some new components such as language packs, font packs, Windows Recovery Environment, and MSXML 3.0, other components can be easily added using available tools peimg.exeincluding mass storage devices, which no longer require any special handling.