Ever have a workstation that won't boot into Windows? Ever wish you could retrieve data from a hard drive that you think isn't recoverable? Ever need to reset a password on a local user account that was lost or forgotten? Ever need to create a new administrative-level user on a local workstation? BartPE may be your answer.
PEBuilder is a free downloadable utility (http://www.nu2.nu/pebuilder/) that assists you in creating a BartPE disc. "Out of the box", a BartPE disc gives you a simple pre-install environment in order to do certain things like check a hard drive or allow you to replace "broken" files with good ones. The real savings and help come with the addition of utilities and applications. Most you can download from the internet for free, others (such as imaging software) you have to pay for. The support forums accessible from the PEBuilder website are great at pointing you in the right direction if you have problems.
Once you have built your first BartPE disc and used it to restore a workstation to a usable machine again, you will realize how valuable it can be. I have restored many a machine and data from what others have deemed inaccessible or irretrievable. Don't get me wrong - sometimes you just can't get data back and some systems are not recoverable. However, given the right tools and time, you can restore almost anything using this invaluable tool.
The wonderful thing about it, too, is if new drivers come out for a SATA drive or network card, you simply download the new drivers, put them in the appropriate PEBuilder folder, build the file again, burn it to CD and viola - a BartPE disc that can boot to a system that was previously unbootable!!
If you have never heard of BartPE or never built one yourself, start looking into it now and get yourself one. It is a lifesaver, as well as a timesaver, in many circumstances that an IT Engineer can face on any given day.