MDT 2010: Configuring the Native Screen Resolution

When I previously performed my deployments using MDT there were times when I needed to edit the unattend.xml to change settings that were not available in MDT 2010 by default. One thing I usually did was set the horizontal resolution to 1366 pixels. To do this I’d open the Windows System Image Manager and navigate to the OOBE configuration pass as shown below:

It turns out that there was a setting in MDT that could have saved me the trouble. In the Customsettings.ini simply add this line:


Now for the science: Windows 7 automatically defaults to the native resolution (if the correct drivers are installed). It will not however, automatically exceed the maximum resolution limit that is configured in the unattend.xml answer file during the OOBE (Out of Box Experience) configuration pass.

The unattend.xml template that comes with MDT is configured with a horizontal resolution of 1024 and a vertical resolution of 768. This means if you deploy a modern widescreen laptop the maximum resolution is capped to 1024 by 768 so the display appears square. To fix this I currently set the horizontal resolution at 1366 and this covers both laptops and desktops.

There are other display property’s that can also be configured in MDT:


These settings can be used in a customsettings.ini file, a configuration database or used as a task sequence variable.


About Andrew Barnes

A Scripting and Deployment Specialist.
This entry was posted in Deployment, MDT 2010 and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to MDT 2010: Configuring the Native Screen Resolution

  1. Miguel says:

    Hi Andrew, thanks for sharing your knowledge.
    In our case, we have different LCD resolutions so what work for us is to have Windows set it to the ‘recommended’ setting which can be done if you delete the entry in your unattend file, you can either do it from WAIK or with notepad.. There are 2 Display in the unattend file created by MDT so we look for the one under OOBE System>Shell Setup
    That way Windows get the best resolution for any monitor, of course if the video driver has been injected.
    Cheers 🙂


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