Thanks in advance for your replies...
We are just about to take over support of a primary school who do not run CC3, they run a vanilla windows server 2003 /XP pro client network, none of us here have any experience of using wds in a school environment.
So, i have a few questions...
1) We have 3 types of machine to build. whilst i understand that we need to do a image for each type of machine, exactly how to do that is still a bit of mystery.
2) When machines are built how do they aquire individual machine names, i read somewhere about prestaging, but don't really know how it works.
3) How are system updates managed? is it just through windows update?
4) When we need to push out a new piece of software, is their a way to deploy it via WDS?
Basically, i'm looking for some sort of WDS for dummies guide here, if anyone can help with info or tutorial links that'd just be sooper.
You may be able to get one image to fit all, it depends on the mass storage drivers. Even if they are different you can get them all to play nicely together with a bit of work. For building images I always suggest using MDT as i t makes life easier in the long run. You would use WDS to pxe boot your MDT boot images and then go from there.
For Windows update just set them to the Microsoft site or implement a WSUS server.
For deploying software you can deploy it via a GPO as an MSI. You should be used to MSI if you come from a RM background. That's not to say all the software will come as an MSI and you may feel that you want to put a lot of the software on the base image.
Windows Noob website is a great place to start if you are learning about WDS. Has some handy guides plus it tells you how to prestage there too.
Deploy XP Images in the Computer Lab with Windows Deployment Services on Server 2003This guide has never let me down for WDS and machine images. Machine names - enter %machinename% into your setpmgr.exe wizard (after deploying you image the machine will boot and start installing. %machinename% is an invalid variable so you will be prompted for a machine name). Windows updates - setup and configure WSUS. Software can be deployed via Software Installation in ADUC
for those of you who are interested, i've got halfway through chapter 5 of 13 in the wds documentation and my head hurts... but i think i'm getting it.