The Deployment Guys
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The Deployment Guys
Reducing Windows Deployment time using Power Management
The following post was contributed by Benjamin Rampe a Senior PFE working for Microsoft. While studying up on Windows 10, I came across a technique that has been shown to reduce the time it takes to apply an OS WIM to disk by 20 – 50%*. That’s a fairly significant savings in time and the...
27 Mar 2015
Using and Extending Model Aliases for Hardware Specific Application Installation
Update 11 December 2009 – A few changes and additions inspired by the work being done by fellow MSC Senior Consultant Steven Markegene. Of note are the changes to the Hyper-V model strings and a new one added by Steven. The script download has been updated as well. In a post on his blog from...
10 Sep 2009
Splitting Task Sequences To Make Life Easier #2
In a previous post , I described the first of two methods on how to drastically reduce the time (and stress/frustration!) it takes to debug an MDT task sequence, by eliminating all the tasks that work. In this post, I’d like to close this topic with the second of the two methods on how to achieve...
24 Feb 2011
Dynamically Installing ‘Computer Specific’ Applications Using Configuration Manager with MDT
There is a little known component of the MDT database that, when used with Configuration Manager, can automatically re-install applications that were previously installed on a device. It is not well known, simply because it isn’t readily visible from the database view within the Deployment...
3 Feb 2012
MDT Debugger 2.1
As some of our regular readers will have seen, I released version 2.0 of the MDT Debugger a short time ago. This version 2.1 is just a minor update with the following changes/improvements: Fixed a bug in the output window that caused some process output not to be captured and displayed Added...
9 May 2011
Using MDT and Custom Function Library Scripts as User Exit Scripts
A fellow Deployment Guy wanted to use some of the functions in ZTIDiskUtility.vbs in his own User Exit script. Since ZTIGather.wsf does not include ZTIDiskUtility.vbs in its <script> elements, these functions are not available during the MDT rules processing. One way to solve this would be to simply...
19 Jul 2010
Deprecation of the OSVersion Property and What to Do About It
The OSVersion variable is populated with a short string representing the version of the operating system (e.g. XP, Vista, Win7Client, 2008, etc.). With MDT 2012, you may have noticed that when you deploy Window 8 that the value of the OSVersion variable gets set to “Other” instead of something...
3 Oct 2013
MDT Deployment Wizard Panes for Installing OS Roles and Features
My customer is deploying Windows Server 2008 R2 using MDT Lite Touch Installation. The wanted to have a way to select the operating system Roles and Features during the Deployment Wizard in a way similar to how the Install Roles and Features step works in the task sequence editor: To that end,...
1 Sep 2010
Keeping An Eye On USMT Progress
I recently did a project where all users had around 25Gb (don’t ask!) of data that had to be migrated with the USMT during the OS deployment. Because of the sheer volume of data, the USMT phases of the project took an extremely long time to complete, and because no on-screen feedback is given of the...
26 Jun 2009
Approving Windows Updates in an MDT 2010 Standalone Environment from a ConfigMgr Software Update Point
You’ve no doubt read some of the benefits around using the Software Update Point features of ConfigMgr. However, if you are already using MDT standalone as an Image Engineering environment – there is sometimes a duplication in having to manage software updates in both environments. The most common solution...
22 Oct 2009
Kick-Starting SCCM Advertisements
I managed to beat fellow Deployment Guy Michael Murgolo to the honour of the first post of 2011, so it is my responsibility to wish all our readers a happy new year! I hope all your 2011 deployment projects go well, and we've all got some good posts lined up over the coming months which hopefully will...
18 Jan 2011
BitLocker Protection Status
I have recently been working with a customer on a Windows Vista to Windows 7 migration. During the Refresh deployment task sequence, BitLocker is suspended on the C and D partitions. On occasion we had issues where by protection was not always successfully being suspended on the D partition, which caused...
4 Nov 2011
Persisting ConfigMgr Packages during a Task Sequence
The MDT Task Sequences for System Center Configuration Manager 2007 use a clever technique to download and persist the MDT Files package during each phase of the Task Sequence. The Use Toolkit Package step uses the ZTISCCM.wsf script to copy the contents of the package to a WDPackage subfolder of the...
17 Jul 2009
Splitting Task Sequences To Make Life Easier #1
I don't know about you but it frustrates me that, to test certain parts of a task sequence, I have to run the entire task sequence from the very beginning, formatting the drive and installing the WIM image. This can be a process that can take an hour just to reach the point I want to test, causing a...
8 Feb 2011
USMT Failures Due To Bad Profile List Entries
Update 2010-05-07: Based on the feedback from James below (thanks James!) and similar feedback from a Microsoft Support Engineer (thanks Frank!) who hit the same failure due to Registry corruption, I’ve updated the attached script so it does not fail in these cases. Update 2013-09-23: I've attached...
28 Mar 2010
UK Tech Days Content Now Live
A couple of weeks ago, I took part in the UK Tech Days event in London. This event – run over one full week – provided a fantastic selection of sessions and included a whole day on desktop related content. During our desktop day we covered desktop virtualisation, an introduction to application compatibility...
21 Jun 2011
ZTI MDT Debugger 1.0
I've had this tool sitting in a folder on my laptop half-finished for a few months but after a particularly frustrating problem with a script in a ZTI deployment I was encouraged to finish it! The original MDTDebugger that I wrote is a great help for debugging tasks running in a litetouch (LTI) deployment...
4 Nov 2011
Automatically Populate the PATCH Property for the ConfigMgr Client Installation - Updated for ConfigMgr 2012
Update 2013-06-12: The newest version of this script can be found here . Two years ago I posted a script to automatically set the PATCH property used by ccmsetup.exe to install client updates during the Configuration Manager client installation in a task sequence. That post is found here...
11 Oct 2012
Added support for 802.1x in Windows PE
EDIT: This topic has now been blogged in detail here . Since the dawn of time, Windows PE (WinPE) has not had any support for the 802.1x authentication protocol. This meant that any network deployment of Windows via a network secured with 802.1x was a non-starter, causing headaches for a few on...
15 Jan 2010
Microsoft Deployment Toolkit - Lite Touch Video Walkthrough
Are you struggling with setting up MDT Lite Touch? - I have created a video walkthrough that shows you how to: Add operating systems, applications, drivers and packages to MDT Configure Office 2007 into the build process Create a MDT Lite Touch task sequence Setup a lab based deployment...
13 Mar 2008
SCCM 2007 and Microsoft Deployment Toolkit - Video Walkthrough
Are you struggling with setting up SCCM 2007 Operating System Deployment and integrating MDT? - I have created a video walkthrough that shows you how to: Setup the server environment for SCCM 2007 OS deployment Configure the SCCM 2007 Site Settings Configure the SCCM 2007 Computer Management...
20 Mar 2008
Preventing OEM builds from Accidentally Performing Mini-Setup without the Task Sequence
When you pre-load an OEM build on machines, they are usually set-up to perform Mini-setup as soon as they come up. Customers sometimes have difficulties ensuring that these machines boot to WinPE using boot media or PXE rather than simply performing Mini-setup using input from the user. Usually, if this...
1 Dec 2009
Adding Support for 802.1x to WinPE
Adding 802.1x functionality to WinPE has been a hot topic for a while now. And, given the amount of traffic and comments that my earlier post generated when I linked to the newly released updates for WinPE that add this long awaited support, it seems that a lot of people are interested in implementing...
2 Mar 2010
Customising the MDT Task Sequence Editor
One of the things I like the most about MDT is the level that it can be customised; you can edit the HTA screens, the provided scripts or even use existing ones to build you own. This level of flexibility allows you to achieve pretty much anything in a deployment, once you have worked out how to do it...
26 Aug 2010
Excluding USB, FireWire and other drives from USMT Capture
A common requirement during user state migration is to not capture data from certain drives. The most commonly requested for exclusion are removable drives such as USB and FireWire drives. There is no command line option to exclude these drives automatically with USMT v3. I had to turn to scripting to...
29 Apr 2009
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