Kevin Remde's IT Pro Weblog
Here are the "Best Of" the questions and answers from today's TechNet Webcast: "Windows Deployment Services Technical Overview.
Thanks to all who attended!
PS - Here is my resource page for this webcast
“Will WDS let you boot using floppy instead of PXE NIC?”
Yes. That’s essentially what I was doing during the demos today. I was running a virtual machine that thought I had a bootable floppy disk in the drive (really it was a virtual floppy disk). Windows Deployment Services has the option for you to create a “Discovery Boot Image”, which can be saved to removable media and used as a substitute for the PXE boot support; in case your NIC is older and doesn’t do PXE boot.
“What is pixie? Is it PE?”
No! PXE is not PE. Windows PE is the Windows Pre-installation Environment. PXE is the Pre-boot eXecutable Environment.
“Is the ISO image a RIS image, or the straight-from-MS ISO setup disk?”
The ISO Image I was using was not a RIS image. To the Machine, it saw it as if I had put the Windows Server 2003 Enterprise Edition installation disk into the drive.
“Kevin, Can you brief explain the differences between BDD and WDS?”
Excellent question! It’s a little confusing, because BDD and WDS both have tools that allow you to make installable images available.
I found a brief but accurate description of this relationship on Ben Hunter’s blog. Number 3 in his list of top BDD issues, “Trying to deploy [BDD] images with WDS”…
This is a common misunderstanding about the relationship between BDD and WDS. Let me assure the relationship is not a close one, BDD is just using WDS! Simply put uses WDS as a mechanism to boot the Lite Touch WIM which connects to the BDD deployment point. Once this has happened it has nothing more to WDS, nothing! So my advice here is DO NOT try to load an image captured with BDD into WDS.
“Where is sysprep found in Windows Vista?”
By default, it’s found in the C:\windows\system32\sysprep folder. (if you’ve got Windows Vista running on your C: drive, that is.)
“If I only have XP clients, how will I perform a Capture Image?”
The same way. You can indeed create a “Capture Boot Image” and boot to it from a sysprepped-and-ready-to-duplicate XP machine, and it will launch the same capture process we launched in the webcast. You’ll end up with a .wim that contains a Windows XP image that can be rolled out using WDS.
“How do you edit a .wim file (e.g. add new drivers, add updates, etc.)?”
Get the Windows Automated Installation Kit (WAIK) and use the ImageX tool.
“Can a virtual PC be installed using ReadyBoost on a flash drive? The reason I ask is because Virtual PC drains system resources.”
I think what you’re asking is “Can Windows Readyboost™ improve the performance of my Virtual Machines.
Yes, it can. Now… remember, it’s going to benefit the host machine only. Vista running within a virtual machine can’t use the USB drive for it’s own performance improvements. But the machine that is hosting Virtual PC can benefit from it.
NOTE: That doesn’t mean that you can suddenly run VPCs with more memory than what you still physically have in your PC. It doesn’t work that way. But it can improve performance overall because of how the application cache is expanded.
“With multiple WDS servers, how can I set/change their priority for client access?”
I don’t think you’re going to have multiple WDS servers answering on the same subnet. Like DHCP, you’re going to have one server answering to the information that DHCP initially tells the client.
“You choose not to listen on port 67 because you are using one machine for both services. In production you would use two.”
Right. We were using 1 machine with both DHCP and WDS, and by default they would have been listening on the same port. We had to set that switch so that on the same machine it would work. However, usually they would be on two separate machines. Thanks!
“Is there a way to deploy 1 XP or W2k image to multiple computers with different hardware?”
With XP and Win2K3 or 2K you still have the HAL limitation. Sysprep in Windows VISTA makes the machine hardware agnostic. But it still isn't able to do that for XP or earlier because the OS isn't "componentized" enough.
“Any suggestions/ for procedures creating the USB boot key?”
I assume you’re asking about how you can create a Windows PE installation and boot from a USB drive…
Start out by looking in the Windows PE Users Guide, which is a part of the Windows Automated Installation Kit.
And I see that Josh has posted the steps on his blog.
“In win. sys image manager; If x86_Microsoft-Windows-Shell-Setup_neutral\OOBE\skipmachineoobe is set to true, the validation section says "setting skipmachineoobe is depreciated in the win image. Why does it say that? what does that mean?”
That setting was apparently for testing only. Check out the description on this TechNet page:http://technet2.microsoft.com/WindowsVista/en/library/103d9a07-6017-4558-9585-b91c7ea99e3e1033.mspx?mfr=true
“Did you say that the full version of WinPE is available in WAIK and is fully customizable?”
Yes indeed! It’s not just for OEMs, System Builders, or Customers with SA on their OS purchases. WAIK, baby!
Here are some resources relating to the webcast I presented on April 30, 2007, entitled “TechNet Webcast: Windows Deployment Services Overview”.
I hope you find them useful.
How Unattended Installation Workshttp://technet2.microsoft.com/WindowsServer/en/Library/d24c91f2-80cd-4a60-98c0-4b9ad28f678a1033.mspx
Remote Operating System Installation (Windows 2000 and RIS)http://www.microsoft.com/technet/prodtechnol/windows2000serv/deploy/depopt/remoteos.mspx
Choosing Between ADS and RIS for Bare-Metal Deployments and Re-Deploymentshttp://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2003/techinfo/overview/risvsads.mspx
ImageX and WIM Image Format
Windows Deployment Services Update Step-by-Step Guide for Windows Server 2003
How Remote Installation Services Work
Windows PE 2.0 for Windows Vista Overview
This session’s resource page:
Live TechNet Events
Microsoft Events page:
Microsoft Events page:
Yes indeed, I'm going to TechEd again! (I've only missed three... and they've been happening since '93!)
I'm excited! This is always an awesome opportunity to learn and to mingle.. mix it up with geeks like me.
"Got anything special planned while you're there?"
Well, I'm hoping to do some more video diaries, and this time some podcasting from the event. Two years ago I shot a lot of video and posted them to my blog. Last year I had a daily blog diary here, with news and photos.
(To find these, you can search my blog, or click the TechEd 2005 and TechEd 2006 tags on the left.)
This year I'll not only be carrying around my video camera, but also some recording gear to do some impromptu interviews for TechNet Radio. (They provided the gear.. so I feel I owe it to them.)
If you are going, and if you have a blog, you should also consider getting your blog registered at TechEdBloggers.net. Add your voice to the community!
So.. are you going? And if so, do you want to meet up for a "Geek Dinner" sometime?
I just received an e-mail from our producers of Online Media (Webcasts, Podcasts, and Virtual Labs) containing the latest highlighted events and titles for May.. and links to where you can register.
Rather than post them here, I've put them up as a separate article. CLICK HERE to see it.
"Are you doing any webcasts in April or May, Kevin?"
"Hey.. that stuff's for Developers!"
Well.. yeah, if you're a pure IT Pro, you can stop reading now. But even more specifically, it is for that portion of the development process that is responsible for the "look-n-feel" of an application; the User Interface. These people are the Designers. And Microsoft has some new tools for this part of the process.
Plus.. the training is just such a cool idea and a good deal that I really wanted to share it with you all.
"<sigh> Okay.. what's the deal?"
There are three events that you can take advantage of:
Make sure you tell the instructor "Kevin sent ya".
"Kevin! You're an IT Pro! Stop giving us all this developer news!"
Well.. the world of IT Pros, Developers, and Architects is not all black and white (er.. black, white, and some other color that is nothing like black or white). I know that there are a lot of you out there who are Software Engineers who also run the Servers; or Desktop Support people who also help in product development. And as a former Software Engineer myself, I still have a soft spot in my heart for Software Development tools and the whole ART of creating software. I'm seriously considering taking some of this training, too.
I just learned of an update available for Outlook 2007 that fixes a couple of issues:
I have to confess - I don't personally care about the search issue so much, but I'm one of those pack-rats who has a VERY big .OST file (Outlook in Exchange "Cached mode" uses that file) due to the number of e-mails I've left (sorted or otherwise) in my mailbox. Outlook seemed fine to me, but I'll take all the computer performance boosting* I can get!
HERE is the KB on the subject,
And HERE is the download.
...and I've posted the resource page for my events HERE .
This week I'm traveling yet again... got a user group in Downer's Grove, IL to present to on Tuesday, and then Thursday is my first main TechNet Event for the quarter.
"What are you guys talking about this time around?"
Here are the three topics I'm talking about:
The www.technetevents.com site has detailed descriptions of the sessions.
"Where are you going to be, Kevin?"
I'm glad you asked!
Here is the full schedule of the TechNet Events I'm personally doing. (Check the TechNet Events site for other dates and cities presented by my team mates.) Click on the date below to go to the registration page.
And make sure you stop by and tell me you learned about it on my blog!
Yes, I'm here.
"Hey! Your blogging has been seriously thin these past couple of months!"
Yeah.. I know. And I feel bad about that.
"What have you been doing instead?"
Well... Let me answer that question with a little bit of history...
In past years our team (Microsoft Across America - IT Pro / TechNet Presenter Lot) was primarily responsible for doing TechNet Events and TechNet Webcasts. That was about it. And then, because we were so amazingly awesome, we started being asked (and quite honestly, "tasked") to speak to usergroups, Campus Connection events, and what we call "cross-team" or "district / area-driven" events on behalf of Microsoft Partners or other entities within Microsoft. And.. again, because are really amazingly awesome, our calendars tend to fill up pretty quickly.
And it's not just the travel and the events themselves; it's the preparation for all the different presentations (study, slides, demos, etc.) This fills up the time that we're NOT on the road. Just ask my family.
(Believe me; I'm not complaining about that. I love what I do. Seriously.)
"So.. what you're saying is that you've been too-busy-to-blog?"
Yep. Pretty much.
"Is that going to change, or should I look for some other blog to read?"
It's going to change. I really really REALLY do love my job, but I love my family (and my sanity) even more. So unfortunately that means I'm going to have to learn how to say 'no' a little more often when it comes to scheduling my weeks and days full of speaking engagements.
And at the same time, the good news is that my team and company realizes that getting good information out to you all in a blog or screencast or podcast is also very valuable. So, you're going to be seeing a lot MORE of that from me and my team mates in the coming months.
"Oh yeah? Like what?"
Stay tuned... you're going to like what you see.
And as a postscript here, I did manage to get away for a couple weeks with my family and had a wonderful, relaxing vacation down in Florida. Granted, I was also speaking at a couple of conferences in Orlando.. but my team mates came through for me and let me spend more time with the family while they picked up more booth duty. BIG THANK YOU to Chris, Chris, John, and Keith. You guys are truly amazingly awesome!
Blain Barton is a great guy. Seriously. Those of you in the southeastern part of the country know Blain as the IT Pro Evangelist and TechNet Presenter doing events in your area. He's also a fellow blogger, who has posted a very interesting item about some things - 5 things, to be exact - that you should consider when moving to Windows Vista.
CLICK HERE to read his "top 5 things" post.
I'm excited to try out that "PC Decrapifier" tool. Sounds great (and a great name)!