Johan Arwidmark, one of our valuable Embedded MVPs has struggled with sysprep and the eval version of Windows Embedded Standard 2009. While using sysprep on a WES 2009 eval image to experience some deployment scenario, he was getting an error in the mini-setup and his Windows Embedded OS would reboot into hang. After lots of investigations and interaction with Microsoft support, he figured out that there was an issue with the Product ID he entered into sysprep.inf.
When you get an eval version of Windows Embedded Standard 2009, you receive a PID for the tools, but Microsoft does not provide a runtime Product ID for the images you will build with the tools. By default, when you build a WES 2009 image using Target Designer and you don’t enter a PID for your runtime in the configuration of your image, this image will time bomb. And this is the expected behavior for eval builds.
The problem is that sysprep requires a valid runtime PID to be entered in the sysprep.inf file. Johan posted a solution here, explaining how to find the eval runtime PID (there is one set by the tools by default that is an eval runtime PID). You can find it after your WES image has been installed (ran through FBA) on the target running regedit under: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Control\WindowsEmbedded\RunTimePID
Copy this PID into your sysprep.inf file and sysprep the image!
There is a file C:\WERUNTIME.INI where you can find the product ID as well.
@Pavel: thanks for the additional hint. This works too.