Last Wednesday I delivered a webcast on Vista Deployment.  As promised I wanted to post here the Q/A log from that webcast.  Enjoy:

 

Question: Will WIM images only be deployable through SMS or will we still be able to use third-party apps, ie. Ghost, in conjunction with a sysprep type app?

Answer: John will cover the scenarios today

Question: I have tried loading 3rd party software (i.e. Norton, Diskeeper, etc), when can I expect these to work properly or are the respective vendors needing to come out with a Vista update?

Private Answer: Vendors will need to update

Question: Will Windows Vista still be able to be deployed via a unattend.txt.

Answer: Absolutely

Question: Will WDS be the preferred (recommended) way to deploy windows vista in small and enterprise size networks? or will there be a SMS OS Deployment Pack feature?

Answer: There are several new methods of deploying, he is talking about them right now - also check out - http://www.microsoft.com/technet/windowsvista/evaluate/feat/deplovw.mspx

Question: can WIM files be used to deploy to VMs

Answer: I don't think WIM is designed for that scenario, today. However, with the push into the virtual world, VM deployment tools will most likely want to use existing tools like the WIM format.

Question: Will the Microsoft Imaging tool support multicasting?

Answer: At the moment, the answer is no but that is THE top feature request so it is something we are working on.

Question: Where can we get the latest WAIK toolkit

Answer: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=993c567d-f12c-4676-917f-05d9de73ada4&displaylang=en

Question: How does WDS compare to ADS? Especially in the Longhorn timeframe. Will WDS replace ADS?

Answer: Longhorn is still pretty far off. A comparison on moving targets is difficult right now. The real bottom line is that you'll have a number of good choices that will work depending on your existing infrastructure.

Question: how soon will these deployment tools be available? will i be able to use at least some of them in deploying images? i work for a school and have to "ghost" weekly

Answer: they are available to Beta program participants today. They will ship in final form close to the end of this calendar year.

Question: what is the timeline for the multicasting to be added?

Answer: I have not seen a firm date.

Question: Will be available a new version of BDD Solution Accelerator?

Answer: Yes, I'm sure you'll see a refresh.

Question: I have the February CTP are you able to perform an unattended install with this release or is this coming with Beta2

Answer: Yes, the WAIK kit tools will allow you to begin testing that.

Question: Comment: WIM can be used to deploy WMs, it is designed for that scenario

Answer: True, but the XML is uses could describe other binary objects you could stuff into a WIM. So you could built a package that wraps a virtual hard drive (VM) install.

Question: Can ImageX run in DOS environment ?

Answer: No

Question: Does WAIK only run on Longhorn or can I run it on 2003?

Answer: Check out - http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=993C567D-F12C-4676-917F-05D9DE73ADA4&displaylang=en

Question: What is the latest version of the WAIK I have a version from last August I think. The link you sent earlier appears to be the users guide.

Answer: Check out - http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=993C567D-F12C-4676-917F-05D9DE73ADA4&displaylang=en

Question: Can the imaging processes being shown here be tested with the current beta version?

Answer: Yes. Just make sure the WAIK kit matches the build of the OS.

Question: when I go to the link for WAIT I only get some help files zipped is that all

Private Answer: Is this where you are going - http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=993C567D-F12C-4676-917F-05D9DE73ADA4&displaylang=en

Question: does it have a limit on the image size as GHOST does?

Answer: Not that I am aware of.

Question: Is there a defined process to build a WINPE boot disk from the WIM file so we can build a repair disk?

Answer: yes, the opk and waik toolkits discuss WinPE use in the helpfile

Question: how do i become a Beta program participant?

Answer: Sure. See http://www.microsoft.com/technet/prodtechnol/beta/preregister.mspx

Question: Can Windows Deployment Services run on Server 2003 or will there be an update to RIS to support Vista installs?

Answer: I know it as Windows Server 2003, Automated Deployment Services (ADS), I am confident there will be an update for VISTA, here is a current link for ADS - http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2003/technologies/management/ads/default.mspx

Question: Is there any support for animated image types/formats?

Answer: Customization of the installation package is allowed and you'll see logos and images from OEM's, customer deployments, etc. I don't know what the restrictions are for animation, but the OPK tools should have the requirements and therefore the restricitons.

Question: since this is compressed image what is the preformace loss during compressing / decompressing?

Answer: I haven't seen any benchmarks on that. Usually we don't do performance benchmarks until pretty late in the dev cycle.

Question: In looking at this demo, it basicly is showing that you need to boot to a Windows PE disk to do the imaging. Is there an automated process?

Answer: Yes, see http://www.microsoft.com/technet/windowsvista/deploy/depenhnc.mspx

Question: will there be a another release of Pe 2.0 or ximage to fix the mounting issues with XP?

Answer: Considering XIMAGE isn't final, the answer is yes.

Question: is win PE 2.0 same as win pe 2005?

Answer: See http://www.microsoft.com/technet/windowsvista/deploy/winpe.mspx for WinPE 2.0 info.

Question: Is Windows PE 2.0 available now.

Answer: See http://www.microsoft.com/technet/windowsvista/deploy/winpe.mspx

Question: Can I boot from a WIM stored on the Local HDD ?

Answer: no

Question: what is Windows PE 2.0

Answer: Windows PE 2.0 is the core deployment foundation for Windows Vista. http://www.microsoft.com/technet/windowsvista/deploy/winpe.mspx

Question: Where can I obtain Windows PE from ?

Answer: I think it is currently only available through the Windows Vista beta and TAP programs to corporate customers and OEMs. I could not find a download on microsoft.com. Sorry.

Answer: hard to tell with those huge strings

Question: Is there a tool to make a USB Key bootable for Vista Consumption ?

Answer: no

Question: better question, will there be another CTP or beta with PE 2.0 with a better working version of ximage and the image manager(cannot read WIM with the image manager current when trying to create a catalog)?

Answer: Yes, see Beta 2 when it ships in a few weeks. Before the end of this quarter.

Question: is beta 2 version for public testing?

Answer: Not yet since it hasn't shipped. People keep calling various builds of the product Beta 2. That is incorrect.

Question: I am going to http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=993C567D-F12C-4676-917F-05D9DE73ADA4&displaylang=en however I do not see any tools when I unzip all I get are some *.chm file

Answer: Correct. That is just the User Guide.

Question: What's the difference between VistaPE and WinPE ?

Answer: There is no such thing as Vista PE.

Question: Being a Beta 1 Longhorn since Oct 05 Release I am anxious to explore more integration of other Features when will there be an next Beta Release throu TechNet or MSpartners?

Answer: Yes, before the end of this quarter. I don't know when that will arrive on the TechNet Plus DVD distribution though. Probably around July.

Question: is there a limit to the number of images that can be stored in a WIM?

Private Answer: I am not aware of a number - Here is a link: http://www.microsoft.com/technet/windowsvista/expert/ximage.mspx

Question: I am using Beta2. The installation went very well and smooth

Answer: Interesting. Beta 2 hasn't shipped. Do you have a time machine? :) What build are you calling Beta 2???

Question: how do I get the tools included on WAIK

Answer: http://www.microsoft.com/technet/windowsvista/library/88f80cb7-d44f-47f7-a10d-e23dd53bc3fa.mspx

Question: where do I put the unattend.xml if I want the image to use it ?

Answer: See http://www.microsoft.com/technet/windowsvista/deploy/depenhnc.mspx The procedures are documented in the WAIK help files.

Question: With technet plus, is there any way to get a newer vista build rather than waiting for it on the DVD? The DVD versions come out pretty late...

Private Answer: Probably need to ping TechNet Plus subscription directly, but here is latest info, - http://www.microsoft.com/technet/windowsvista/evaluate/betadist.mspx

Question: Can drivers be updated directly in the wim file?

Answer: YES !!!

Question: Is there a site which timelines these different builds ?

Answer: Unfortunately not.