WDS Deployment

  Office, PXE, Windows

Here are my notes for deplying Windows 7 machines through Server 2008 Windows Deployment Service.

Firstly we need a reference machine. Insert your Windows 7 media into a reference machine and install windows as normal. When you get to the point where it asks you for the
computer name, this is the point where you need to enter Audit mode. Just press Ctrl + Shift + F3 and it will boot into audit mode.
Set up your machine the way you want it, but don’t join it to the domain.

Once you have finished installing all the programs, you need to run sysprep. You can run this from the command line, but I usually use the gui, which is located in C:\windows\system32\sysprep\sysprep.exe
Make sure you tick the generalise check box and set to OOBE (out of box experience) and then shut down.
You now have a reference machine that you need to capture.

I have already set-up the WDS machine, here is how I did it.
I installed the WDS role through Server Manager on my domain controller. DHCP is enabled on this machine so I ticked both boxes for DHCP. I inserted the windows 7 media and within WDS / Servers / mydc.mydomain.local / Boot Images, I
created an Install an Image boot file. Right clicked Boot Image and selected Add boot image. Find the windows 7 media / sources and boot.wim file and name that Install an Image. Once that is in place,
right click on that image and go to ‘Capture an Image’. Change the Image name and Image description to ‘Capture an Image’ and save the file in your RemoteInstall folder D:\RemoteInstall as CaptureImage.wim.

Right click Boot Images again and Add boot image. Choose your new CaptureImage.wim file and add that. You now have Install an Image and Capture an Image in your Boot Images folder.

Now you need to create a group in Install Images. Right click Install Images and ‘Add image group’. I named mine ‘Windows 7 Images’.

Start the machine up and ensure that PXE is enabled and the first boot sequence within bios. It should find the pxe server and you might have to quickly hit F2 to boot to it. You should see ‘Install an image’ and ‘Capture an image’. Obviously you want to capture the imagine at this point. You can create images for different departments, for example a techie image or a sales image, admin image etc etc.

Once it has captured, you can plug your machines into a network point and do the same thing, but you want to ‘install an image’ on each one.



I found the following article a good reference when creating my answer file –¬†http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd349348%28v=ws.10%29.aspx#BKMK_4