Windows Longhorn build 4081

Build of Windows Longhorn
OS family
Timebomb2004-10-30 (+180 days)
Works in

Windows Longhorn build 4081 is a Milestone 7 build of Windows Longhorn. On 23 January 2020, this build was listed in a BetaArchive thread by UX.Unleaked blog founder Grabberslasher to be released to the aforementioned site's FTP server. This build was released on 27 January 2020 in the fourth set of their 33 Longhorn/Vista builds along with build 5098.[1]

Changes[edit | edit source]

  • This is the earliest available build of Windows to be componentized, with the operating system being built from packages containing individual features and components. Most features found in previous builds have also been removed as the development team's last resort measure to try to contain Longhorn's increasing feature creep.
  • This is the earliest available build of Windows to support disabling upgrades via an empty noupgrade.txt placed in the sources folder.
  • Also, in the hardware part, setup no longer shows that it is detecting hardware, due to it now needing to compile features, mostly those based on .NET.
  • ClearType has been disabled again after being enabled for the second time in idx02 compile of build 4050.
  • The MS Shell Dlg 2 string value has changed to "Microsoft Sans Serif" located at HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\FontSubstitutes.
  • This build no longer shows the AUTOCHK screen upon booting to the second stage of setup. This would be later reintroduced on Windows Vista build 5342.2.

Bugs and quirks[edit | edit source]

Installation[edit | edit source]

As typical for componentized builds, it tends to take a long time to install and can be unstable.

Upgrade[edit | edit source]

Attempting to upgrade from other builds is not possible as one of two outcomes may occur:

  1. A bugcheck with error code 0x7E after the second reboot. This is commonly observed when trying to upgrade from non-componentized builds, such as 4074 (via a registry tweak that reports it as a componentized build).
  2. An error during the file copy phase.

WinPE[edit | edit source]

  • The mouse driver in this build's WinPE does not function on specific hardware configurations or hypervisors, and may require a keyboard to navigate through the installation procedure. This issue appears to be largely related to using a PS/2 mouse, as most ordinary USB mice appear to function properly in setup.

WordPad[edit | edit source]

WordPad does not start, as it will display with Failed to create empty document instead.

Outlook Express[edit | edit source]

Outlook Express does not start due to registry errors and certain dependencies on WinFS.

Themes[edit | edit source]

  • The Windows Classic theme does not function due to a broken Windows Classic.theme file.

Explorer[edit | edit source]

  • CD and DVD drives behave like local disks.
  • Help and Support crashes Explorer.
  • Explorer will crash after adding the display tile in sidebar and won't launch again. A workaround is to create a new account via cmd.

Control Panel[edit | edit source]

  • Hardware and Devices folder does not open.
  • By default, sounds Control Panel applet is missing. It is possible to port mmsys.cpl from another build to the WINDOWS\SYSTEM32 directory in order to get the control panel applet to work.
  • Task Scheduler from Control Panel shows a nameless folder and generic folder icon.
  • By default, the Phone and Modem Options Control Panel applet name is empty.
  • Computer Management displays script errors due to missing registry entries.
  • Device Manager has a bug where drivers can't be updated as the Hardware Wizard Control Panel applet is missing. Drivers can be installed via the devcon utility from the Windows XP Driver Development Kit (DDK), or by copying hdwwiz.cpl from another build to the WINDOWS\SYSTEM32 directory as to get the updating drivers function in Device Manager to work.

Creating folders[edit | edit source]

The option to create folders by right-clicking and selecting New doesn't work as the Folder entry is missing. Apply the following registry key to fix this problem:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00


DirectX[edit | edit source]

Although the Desktop Window Manager is present and can be activated by pressing Ctrl+⇧ Shift+F9 as in Windows Server 2008 build 4066, it will result in a black screen and close due to a broken DirectX installation. It can fixed via the instructions listed on the Windows Aero page.

Graphics[edit | edit source]

Enable VGA Mode after installing video drivers or the system will result in a blue screen of death with an error code of 0x000000B4.

Windows Product Activation[edit | edit source]

Windows Product Activation is missing.

Safe mode[edit | edit source]

The Safe mode functionality does not work in this build and results in an INACCESSIBLE_BOOT_DEVICE bugcheck with code 0x0000007B. This is because the SafeBoot key, located at HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control, is largely incomplete and lacks most entries necessary for Safe Mode to work. Restoring the key from an earlier build with working safe mode allows this build to boot properly, but the video driver will not initialize properly. As a result, the operating system will freeze as it transitions into graphical mode, so Safe Mode is currently not known to work on these pre-reset Longhorn componentized builds.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Setup[edit | edit source]

Interface[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]