Steps to create and deploy an image that has Altiris Partition (Local Recovery)

Article:HOWTO2702  |  Created: 2006-03-10  |  Updated: 2007-01-16  |  Article URL
Article Type
How To

What are the steps to create and deploy an image of a computer with the Altiris Paritition on it, using Local Recovery?

This applies to Local Recovery, Local Recovery Pro and Recovery Agents in local mode, versions 5.x - 6.0.395
Applies to RapiDeploy version 6.1.5798 or greater (imaging engine that comes with Altiris Deployment Solution 6.1.350 or greater)
Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional* with SP3, SP4
Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition* with SP1, SP2
Microsoft Windows XP Professional* with SP1, SP2
Microsoft Windows Server 2003*

IMPORTANT—Before Beginning

In order to image a computer that has an Altiris partition on its drive, use Altiris RapiDeploy 6.1 build 5798 or greater. It is not possible to successfully image and preserve an Altiris partition using the products of another company. In addition to the imaging software, use a system preparation tool, such as Microsoft Sysprep, that is used to prepare a computer for disk duplication.

Microsoft designed Sysprep tool for system administrators who deploy Windows installations to multiple computers. Before proceeding with the below steps, make sure to get an appropriate version of Sysprep for your Windows, either from Microsoft Web site, or the original Windows CD ( file, located in the [%CDROM%\Support\Tools] directory).

Preparing the Master Computer for Disk Duplication

  1. Install Windows, service packs, and applications, and configure the computer.
  2. Extract all Sysprep files from the cab archive to a [C:\sysprep] folder.
  3. Defragment the drive and start the Local Recovery installation program. Reboot the computer when the installation prompts.
  4. When booting into Windows, the Altiris Partition Wizard dialog will ask you to enter partition size. Accept all defaults (highly recommended) and do not reboot at this point.
  5. At the command prompt, navigate to the [C:\sysprep] folder and type a following command: 

        sysprep.exe –reboot –mini -reseal -quiet

    Next installation steps (6–7) create a local image of the entire file system (also called “golden image”). In case a user has to proceed with Full System Recovery (F11-Recovery), Sysprep will silently execute from the golden image. Adding the Sysprep execution as a part of the golden image ensures that all F11-Recovered systems have unique SIDs.

    Also create a sysprep.inf answer file and place it in the same directory [C:\sysprep] so that F11-Recovered system runs Windows mini-setup in unattended mode. For more information on sysprep usage, check with the deploy.chm, that is found in the [C:\sysprep] directory.

    If the sysprep.inf answer file is not included into the golden image, then the user has to enter the mini-setup information manually (such as Windows serial number, time zone configuration, etc.). This option allows repurposing F11-Recovered computer to another person.
  6. Proceed with creation of golden image (Linux part) and the initial snapshot (Windows part). After the intial snapshot had completed successfully, spend some time on customizing Recovery Agent settings, such as configuring excludes, hiding icons etc.
  7. When computer is fully configured for distribution, run the following command:

        sysprep.exe -mini –reseal –forceshutdown

This command clears SID and forces the computer to shut down itself. This step is necessary for avoiding duplicate SIDs of the deployed systems. Master computer is ready for disk duplication.

Capturing and Deploying the Image of a Master Computer

  1. On the server side, install Altiris Deployment Solution 6.1.350.
  2. Boot the master computer with a network boot floppy that is created in Boot Disk Creator. Refer to the Deployment Solution documentation for exact instructions by visiting Altiris' Documentation site.
  3. From the master computer, run the following command that uploads the image to the server share:

    rdeploy –mu –fF:\images\imagename.img

    Note: The path used in this command is default and may vary in your installation.
  4. In order to recover this image to another computer, use the following command:

    rdeploy –md –fF:\images\imagename.img

    Note: Deployment can be accomplished in many different ways. For example, you can convert an image to a single executable file and involve PXE for image distribution.

    For information on imaging multiple physical hard drives using RapiDeploy, see article 23987.

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