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Windows 7 Thread, Windows 7 and Imaging in Technical; Has anyone had any experience creating Ghost images with Windows 7 and your applications - IE, MS Office, ActivInspire, etc? ...
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    Windows 7 and Imaging

    Has anyone had any experience creating Ghost images with Windows 7 and your applications - IE, MS Office, ActivInspire, etc? What's the best tool to use? Do you have to follow the MS guide going through the Audit mode, etc?

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    SneakyBeaky's Avatar
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    Not quite sure what you mean by "with Windows 7 and your applications". I have succesfully used Windows 7 'Back up and Restore> create a system image' to transfer the entire contents of a failing laptop hard drive to a new drive, without any problems. Worked perfectly when the new drive was inserted in place of the old one.
    Last edited by SneakyBeaky; 14th December 2010 at 03:31 PM.

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    I'm trying to create an image for deployment, not for hardware failure.

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    We use Ghost - it works fine. Build your master image and sysprep it and then deploy.

    At minimu, you'll get a machine that goes through the "out of box experience" once you deploy the image. That's probably not what you want and unattend.xml allows you to specify a whole raft of things which happen (eg we run a script which finishes off the install and renames the computer)

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    Steve, which Sysprep did you use?

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    I have used Ghost to image a room of Windows 7 machines with no problems, using the Ghost cast method to push a completed image including all he applications installed etc.

    Microsoft recommend prepping the machine that you are taking the machine from before doing so to prevent problems with SSID's being damaged or created incorrectly, never found the need to sysprep XP images or the W7 ones i have recently put created.

    image creation will take alot longer than rolling it back out, Ghost is sensitive to lagging clients which makes it appear to hang, it does eventually drop the failed clients but not always.
    Creating the bootable media works better with MSDOS option than the PCDOS esp if you have any older PC's as they wont load it, im sure its BIOS/CDDrive related and the reading of the created boot image.

    Software Im Using:
    Symantec Ghost V11 (ghost cast server, Network bootdisk creator)
    TFTPD32 : an opensource TFTP server/service for windows : TFTP server : tftpd program (if you dont want to use your existing DHCP server or wish to push custom PXE boot images for different network cards, if you are using a W7 to host this from untick the ping address before assigning it)

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    ChrisH's Avatar
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    Sysprep is in the c:\windows\system32\sysprep folder on a Windows 7 Install, so you don't need to download it.

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    Alright, I have found the copy of Sysprep, however after completing the Sysprep (with generalize box checked) and uploading the image I had created with Ghost, Windows tells me that "Windows could not finish configuring the system. To attempt resume configuration, restart the computer." I restart the computer and I get the same thing. Good thing I took an unprepped image before I created my Sysprepped one. Anyone see this before or can tell me where I can see the logs and possibly look at whats causing this error?

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    LeMarchand's Avatar
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    I had that. IIRC, I booted into Safe Mode (and had the same problem) but after that attempt it booted OK. PITA, though.

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    Yes, total PITA if you are dealing with creating an image for a school district with 6000+ systems. I can't have to boot every one into safe mode first. Any other ideas?

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    if it does that youve got something in your sysprep file wrong iirc

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    I have nothing in my sysprep file yet, just the default stuff Windows puts in it.

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    I have seen that happen. Like you, I take an image of the unsysprepped machine - it's then easy to re-sysprep and try again. I've never had it fail twice so I assume it's just one of those random things which are sent to make your life a misery :-)

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    This is a MAJOR PITA!

    Last semester's startup - I nearly about died trying to figure out what was causing it to go into this endless loop. After many hours of searching I came across a small mention by someone regarding corrupt registry, but thought nothing of it. No solutions were posted. I ended up calling up Microsoft - and lo' and behold, they had a hotfix available that fixed registry entries that would cause Win 7 sysprepped images to go bonkers. Sorry I don't have the exact KB article and I haven't touched Win 7 imaging for months - busy with other tasks.

    There are a couple of posts at other forums (not sure if I can name them) but that is where credit is due.

    I now have the ACTUAL SOLUTION to this problem. This solution will actually tell you exactly what registry key is causing your sysprep to fail, so then you don't have to slowly install every program until you find the problem -- especially since this didn't work for me because my problem has been intermittent.

    This issue is caused by certain registry keys that are either:

    a) Larger than 8kb

    b) Set with incorrect permissions

    c) Corrupt in some way

    For me, the problem was intermittent (same registry key would sometimes cause the issue and sometimes not - must be corrupt sometimes) so it was impossible to tell what program was doing it. Luckily, there is a log you can look at that will tell you exactly what registry key is erroring out. Here are the steps for getting the log you need to see:

    When you see the error message, do the following:

    1.) Push Shift+F10 to get to a command prompt

    2.) Navigate to C:\windows\Panther

    3.) Find the Setup.etl file and find a way to copy this file off of the system (I copied it to the D:\ partition and used Ghost to gather that partition and get the file off)

    4.) Copy the setup.etl file from the corrupted system to another computer that has Windows 7. Put it on the root of C:\ for easiest access.

    5.) Open a Command Prompt on the Windows 7 computer.

    6.) Navigate to the root of C:\ (or wherever you saved the file)

    7.) Type "tracerpt setup.etl -o logfile.csv"

    8.) Close the command prompt and open up logfile.csv in your text editor of choice.

    9.) Look through the log file (towards the end probably) for messages that say "Failed to process reg key or one of it's decendants" For me, the exact eror looked like this: "Failed to process reg key or one of its descendants: [\REGISTRY\MACHINE\SOFTWARE\ESET\ESET Security\CurrentVersion\Plugins\01000200\Profiles\ @My profile]" If you search for "reg key" or "failed to process" you should find the failure.

    10.) Remove this software from your image, or find out how to get the registry key that is failing to work properly.

    After this, you should be able to properly identify any problem keys and remove/workaround them on your image.







    Lastly, I was using WDS and WAIK. Slow.....but free. Didn't have the time to look into other deployment methods at the time.

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    I used ghost with Windows 7 the same as i did with XP and it worked fine. The only obvious thing to do is make a new sysprep fro Windows 7.

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