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Imaging Win 7 Pro x64 for deployment

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  • Imaging Win 7 Pro x64 for deployment

    Dear Members,

    Recently we will be getting 10 new computers blank with out OS and have plan to install win 7 pro x 64 on all of them. All computers are 100% identical with same HDD, memory etc.

    Now installing on each PC with drivers is time consuming task, to cut this I need to work out a solution of imaging.

    Previously I used Norton Ghost for making Win XP Images. I need assistance from experts how to work this out with Win 7, Guide me below I am writing what I am thinking to do.

    - Install Win 7 Pro x 64 with drivers, create 2 partitions C and D on Hard Drive on 1st PC
    - Do not activate windows and take its complete Hard Disk Image with partition C and D using Norton Ghost on a portable USB HDD
    - Boot the 2nd PC with Ghost bootable CD and give the source imgae .gho file from portable HDD and write complete with hard disk partitions C and D on the destination PC which is 2nd PC, after that rename its computer name
    - activate windows on both PC and join to domain network

    Above mentioned steps are OK and can work out for 10 Computers same way, let me know.


  • #2
    Re: Imaging Win 7 Pro x64 for deployment

    If they are domain members, you will need to sysprep them

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    Tom Jones
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    • #3
      Re: Imaging Win 7 Pro x64 for deployment

      Why 2 partitions?
      after configuring your base PC, youll have to run sysprep (I use sysprep.exe /oobe /generalize)


      • #4
        Re: Imaging Win 7 Pro x64 for deployment

        Depending on what you use to roll out your Windows 7 PCs after, you may run into an issue whereas settings will revert back to US. For example, we set ours for UK but when rolling out using a template in Hyper-V, if we haven't created an answer file to set UK keyboard, it will revert to US. We then have to go through Regional and Language settings to change back to UK and ensure that the same is copied to new users logging on and to the Welcome Screen.
        Last edited by Virtual; 1st March 2012, 09:46.


        • #5
          Re: Imaging Win 7 Pro x64 for deployment

          Look into MDT 2010.


          • #6
            Re: Imaging Win 7 Pro x64 for deployment

            Just as others have suggested in this thread, there are a few tools you could use to create images and simplify your imaging and deployment process.

            The integrated Sysprep utility is perhaps one of the more commonly used options to automate a successful deployment. The official Sysprep utility is located in the folder C:\Windows\System32\Sysprep of the Windows 7 environment. There are some tips that I can give you to assist you both with the use of the Sysprep utility and creating unattend.xml files and then proceeding from there.

            The first tip is to use the Windows Automated Installation Kit (Windows AIK) just as another member proposed, which includes WSIM (Windows System Image Manager) to create unattend.xml files, or an answer file. The Windows Automated Installation Kit or Windows AIK includes several utilities that can help make using the official Sysprep utility easier than ever. Windows AIK also includes ImageX which is the Microsoft cloning utility that creates file based images (.wim) allowing the images to be modified after their creation to apply updates, new drivers, or applications. For more specific assistance on domain joining, please use the steps outlined in “Automating the Domain Join” from the TechNet site.

            The second tip is to use Audit Mode to customize the system and perform customizations to the default profile. By allowing you to log into the system as Administrator, Audit Mode can significantly simplify the customization process. In order to customize the default profile in both Windows Vista and Windows 7 you will need to make your customizations in Audit Mode, and then run Sysprep with an answer file that has the copyprofile setting enabled.

            The final tip I will leave you with is to use the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) that combines all of the official tools above into a single workbench interface that can help automate the entirety of the process. Additionally, it is compatible with Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, and Windows Server 2003, 2008, and 2008 R2, which means learning one utility to do all of your deployments. Furthermore, it is exceptionally useful in creating “universal” images as it can easily add or remove drivers or applications from the deployment images.

            Windows Outreach Team – IT Pro