Wpeinit and Startnet.cmd: Using WinPE Startup Scripts

Applies To: Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2012, Windows Server 2012 R2

Use Wpeinit and Startnet.cmd to run startup scripts when Windows PE (WinPE) first runs.

Wpeinit outputs log messages to c:\Windows\system32\wpeinit.log.


You can add customized command-line scripts in Windows PE by using Startnet.cmd. By default, Windows PE includes a Startnet.cmd script located at %SYSTEMROOT%\System32 of your customized Windows PE image.

Startnet.cmd starts Wpeinit.exe. Wpeinit.exe installs Plug and Play devices, processes Unattend.xml settings, and loads network resources.

For more info, see WinPE: Mount and Customize.

Wpeinit Command-Line Options

The following command-line option is available for Wpeinit:

Wpeinit [-unattend:<path_to_answer_file>]


Wpeinit –unattend:"C:\Unattend-PE.xml"

Supported Unattend settings

You can create an answer file and include any of the following settings for use with Windows PE:

See Also


WinPE: Mount and Customize


Winpeshl.ini Reference: Launching an app when WinPE starts


Best Practices for Authoring Answer Files

Other Resources

WinPE for Windows 8.1: Windows PE 5.1
Unattended Windows Setup Reference