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Wireless Networks Thread, Can't image with onboard SIS900 network card (4Front PCs) in Technical; Hi all, I've inherited some awful 4Front all-in-one PCs, which despite being less than 3 years old are dreadful. The ...
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    amvc's Avatar
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    Can't image with onboard SIS900 network card (4Front PCs)

    Hi all,

    I've inherited some awful 4Front all-in-one PCs, which despite being less than 3 years old are dreadful.

    The problem I'm having is that I can't image them (96 of them!), which is a major headache.
    The PCs themselves have SIS661 motherboards and onboard SIS900 network.

    I'm running Ghost Solution Suite 2.5 (latest - fully up to date), and i've got the latest SIS900 ndis and packet drivers and created numerous combinations of boot disks (PC-DOS and MS-DOS).

    When I take a unicast image, it pulls to the server ok. If I try a multicast restore (on say three machines), one will work with files missing, one will loop during the windows boot and one will fail duing multicasting. I've tried setting 'receive mode = 6' for the driver mode during the creation of the bootdisks (this slows the speed, but doesn't alter the outcome), and i've also tried syspreping the image before sending it back to the server.

    I've even moved the server and plugged it directly into the switch the suite of PCs and using (HP Procurve 2548, multicast enabled).

    I can't think of anything else to try after almost three days of effort.

    Has anybody got any ideas out there? (and has anybody got any of 4Front machines which they've managed to image?)

    Thanks

    Andrew

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    amvc's Avatar
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    and I should also add, i've tried with an image containing just a flat copy of windows XP (to prove that my full image isn't corrupted in some way). But the results are the same.

    I know I should pull myself together, but i'm starting to cry :-)

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    tjb
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    Good luck with that! I inherited 50 PCs with SIS900 NICs a few years ago which I have now got rid of. I had all sorts of issues Ghosting them and did manage to do a whole lab a couple of times until it all went wrong and I had to do them in batches of 6 until I finally got rid of them! I will have a look on Monday (Friday night here) to see if I have any SIS900 boot disks or packet drivers still lurking about.

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    I managed to image a suite with these cards. I ended up using the universal template when i made the boot disks. If you do this you need to enable pxe boot within the bios.

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    We had endless problems with the SIS900 cards but I haven't used them for some years.

    Is there any possibility of fitting some other NIC (even to just a couple) to see if that helps? If it does, could you put new NICs in every machine? It will cost but it may make them work better.

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    amvc's Avatar
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    afraid not, there's no PCI slots.

    As I said, these 4Front machines are awful. Avoid at all costs :-)

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    What about imaging from an external USB hard drive, avoiding Ethernet altogether?

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    tjb
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    @ amvc - Sorry I couldn't find any working SIS900 Ghost disks out of the three I found in a box. I remember now that I never ever had any success getting Ghost Console to work with the SIS900 NICs, I had to always use floppy disks to Ghost the PCs.

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    amvc's Avatar
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    thanks for looking anyway. At the moment i've given up. When I get time i'll take the harddisks out and put them one-by-one in a doner dell machine to image.

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    tjb
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    It would be a lot easier to take the master imaged HD to each PC, plug it into the spare IDE cable & power, then use a standard Ghost floppy (no network drivers required!) to do a local disk to disk copy. I've had to do this a few times and can be as quick as 5 minutes to image each PC depending on the size of the image. You just need to make sure you don't pull the doner image over to your master HD! Just remember the 1st drive plugged in is always #1 and the 2nd drive plugged in is always #2.

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    You're all kidding, right?

    We have 212 Foxconn motherboard based PCs (with SIS900 ethernet controllers), all with fairly heavily modified copies of Windows XP, we've got the latest copy of Ghost Solution Suite 2.5 fully patched up, and we've never had any problems with cloning them. However, this may be because of the way the SIS900 is implemented on our Foxconn motherboards which probably explains something.

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    have you tried netbootdisk?

    Z

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    Yep, tried netbootdisk. That didn't help, although it's a useful bit of software in general.

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