O/S Deployment Thread, Ooooo! Fancy! in Technical; So, I've never use WDS before, at least not more than stealing the TFTP server for ghost.
I have been ...
28th August 2009, 06:17 PM #1
So, I've never use WDS before, at least not more than stealing the TFTP server for ghost.
I have been getting ready to deploy Vista with 2008 R2 WDS today. Inadvertantly I have been using it's coolest new feature:
Dynamic driver provisioning
In Windows Server 2008 R2, you can add and configure driver packages on a server that is running Windows Deployment Services. After you have added the driver packages to the server, you can do the following:
Deploy driver packages to client computers based on the hardware of the client as part of an installation
Also gets me out of my domain renaming issues as it uses the untrusted join. All I need to do is prestage the computers with wdsutil, I can then specify a specific wds unattend file to pick the correct image for that machine (in theory) and automate the install and sysprep after.
28th August 2009, 06:23 PM #2
I've been doing pseudo-dynamic driver provisioning for XP for a while now, by building the drivers into the wim (yes, without pulling it down to a machine and re-capturing ) and letting the machine install them as required. WDS method of updating files in the image during deployment, without having to build them into it, is quite useful too.
28th August 2009, 06:28 PM #3
Been using WDS since it came out and love it.. But have to admit the new Driver Package addition is a godsend(sp?)
We have a room of old PCs that use the dreaded sis900 NICs which disappear when WDS starts
Prestaging is good - I have it set so taht unknown clients require admin approval - this allows me to name them from the WDS console..
I finally sorted Unattend files this time - didn't realise there were 2 types of unattend file
A server one (unattend.xml) which can auto login to the WDS server and set the drive formatting preferences
An Image one (ImageUnattend.xml) which I have always used for naming and domain joins, etc..
28th August 2009, 06:30 PM #4
I did similar with XP by just using the ghost image editor to add drivers to the existing folders used by sysprep
30th August 2009, 12:25 AM #5
Haven't looked at WDS yet, mainly because the legacy RIS is still working just fine and we're not going to Vista, 2008 or Win7 for years yet.
Might have a play at home soon though just to learn the ropes.. any suggested resources/guides to read up on first?
22nd January 2010, 09:13 PM #6
Hi DMcCoy - this sounds very interesting. I've had to edit our images using imagex to get new drivers in there. I didn't know you could have a dynamic image directory on the server.
Originally Posted by DMcCoy
We have WDS on a 2008 server - it's not 2008 R2 - does this matter?
Can you tell me more? I'm sure I will have to add some drivers next week.
22nd January 2010, 09:17 PM #7
@garethedmondson - The WDS that ships with 2008 doesn't have the ability to inject drivers - that was added in R2 (WDS v2?)
If you have 2008, you needed to inject them into the boot wim's using imageX IIRC.. or use MDT
If you can - I'd suggest getting your WDS server up to 2008 R2 to take advantage of the new WDS features - but the server needs to be x64
22nd January 2010, 10:11 PM #8
Originally Posted by Gatt
Thanks for reply. I think that may be worth investing in. What's the cheapest 64 bit server I wonder? Doesn't have to be amazing - just run WDS.
Hmmmm - if it makes our jobs easier then it has to be worth the money. :-)
22nd January 2010, 10:19 PM #9
Well something like the HP ML115 if you don't mind a tower server is more than capable of acting as an imaging server. Can normally pick them up for around the £200ish mark depending on any upgrades you may wish to add
Originally Posted by garethedmondson
22nd January 2010, 10:20 PM #10
What servers do you have now 64 bit has been in lots of CPSs for ages, just run CPUID on your server and look for EMT64 or AMD64.
22nd January 2010, 10:50 PM #11
Originally Posted by SYNACK
I'll do that on Monday. I have a feeling our WDS server is actually 64 bit. If not I can see me getting a small cheap 64bit server.
A rather lame noobie question but can you upgrade a 2008 server to R2 or will it mean a total rebuild of the server? Is WDS any different - as in are there different docs on the MS website? And finally will it still let me do XP as opposed to Windows 7.
Thanks for the advice,
Last edited by garethedmondson; 22nd January 2010 at 10:56 PM.
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