Thursday, May 19, 2011

Part 2: Image capturing & deployment using WDS

In earlier part 1, I mentioned using WinPE to capture Windows image files for further deployment. Another more scalable way is to use Windows Deployment Services (WDS) to do the same job. Instead of using CD boot, you can do network PXE boot with DHCP. There are several good resources online that outlined the step-by-step, so I won't re-invent the wheels. I would just summarize the steps and the url links to find them. Before that, it is assumed that you have already "sysprep-ed" the Windows host to be captured and put it to shut-off mode.
  1. Setup WDS infrastructure by installing WDS server role. Other prerequisites include Active Directory infrastructure and DHCP.
  2. Add Boot Image (boot.wim) to WDS server. Create and add a capture image by right-clicking on the selected boot image.
  3. PXE boot the target system. From the start-up menu, choose to boot from the capture image.
  4. Capture the target image on volume. Upload the new image to WDS.
  5. You may now add the newly captured image as install image for subsequent Windows deployment.
  6. For detailed steps from step 2 to 6, click here.

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