How to use Sysprep with Ghost
|Article:TECH107324|||||Created: 2000-01-16|||||Updated: 2009-01-28|||||Article URL http://www.symantec.com/docs/TECH107324|
This document describes how to use Microsoft's System Preparation tool (Sysprep) on a Windows 2000/XP/Vista computer to change the computer's configuration.
Sysprep is a Microsoft utility that prepares a computer for cloning (imaging) and customization. When you restart a computer after using Sysprep, Windows 2000/XP/Vista detects the attached devices such as the hard drive, CD/DVD ROM, and other Plug-and-Play devices and rebuilds the driver database the next time Windows is started.
For an overview of Sysprep, check the Microsoft document " What is Sysprep? " available at http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc721940(WS.10).aspx.
- Windows NT: Because Windows NT does not support Plug-and-Play, do not use Sysprep with Ghost to create an image of a Windows NT installation.
- Windows XP: If creating an image of a Windows XP installation, use the Windows XP version of Sysprep (found on the Windows XP CD), rather than the Windows 2000 version. There are three versions of Sysprep for Windows XP:
- Windows Vista: If creating an image of a Windows Vista installation, ensure you use the version installed with Vista. Sysprep files can be found at C:\Windows\System32\Sysprep.
- Differing hardware:The operating system affects how well a cloning operation will work when cloning between computers that have different hardware. For more information about these hardware differences and about using Ghost to roll out Windows NT, 2000, XP and Vista installations, see the documents:
- "Introduction to cloning a Windows NT, Windows 2000, or Windows XP computer." at:
- "How to clone a Windows NT or Windows 2000 workstation." at:
- "How to change the SID on a Windows XP, Windows 2000, or Windows NT computer." at:
- "Introduction to cloning a Windows NT, Windows 2000, or Windows XP computer." at:
- If you are moving an image from one type of computer to dissimilar hardware, use the Deploy Anywhere feature of Ghost Solution Suite 2.5. Check the document 'How to use DeployAnywhere.' available at http://service1.symantec.com/support/on-technology.nsf/docid/2009030416303060?Open&seg=ent
Ghost Walker and the SID Change option in the Task in Ghost Console can also change the computer configuration, but they do not prompt Windows to rebuild the Plug-and-Play driver database. For an image of a Windows 2000, XP or Vista installation, use Microsoft's Sysprep instead of Ghost to change the computer's configuration.
If you are having issues running Microsoft Sysprep with Ghost, please see this document: "Resolving issues with Microsoft Sysprep." at:
Click an icon to either expand ( ) or collapse ( ) each section.
There are four different versions of Sysprep provided with Windows 2000. The table below outlines which versions of Ghost work with each version of Sysprep.
Compatible Ghost versions
|None. Do not use with Ghost||Original Windows 2000 CD|
|5.0.2149.1||Symantec Ghost 7.5|
Symantec Ghost 8.0
|Later copies of Windows 2000 CD|
|5.0.2195.1||Symantec Ghost 7.5|
Symantec Ghost 8.0
|Windows 2000 SP1|
|5.0.2195.2104||Symantec Ghost 8.0||Download from Microsoft|
There are three versions of Sysprep for Windows XP that will work with Ghost.
- Windows XP without Service Pack 1 installed: Version 5.1.2600 (included on the Windows XP CD)
- Windows XP with Service Pack 1: Version 5.1.2600.1106.
- Windows XP with Service Pack 2: Download from Microsoft.
The Sysprep files can be found within the installed OS at C:\Windows\System32\Sysprep
Download the latest version from Microsoft.
Note: Though the above link to Windows 2003 Sysprep is the same as the link to the Windows XP Service Pack 2 version, the document Windows XP Service Pack 2 Deployment Tools (Article ID 838080) indicates that it is also the version used for Windows 2003.
How to use Sysprep with Ghost to create an image of a Windows 2000 or Windows XP installation
Follow these steps to use Sysprep for Windows 2000, Windows XP or Windows Vista to create a Ghost image of the installation and roll the image out to other computers.
Notes: Consumer versions of Ghost include Norton Ghost 2000, Norton Ghost 2001, Norton Ghost 2002, and Norton Ghost 2003. Note the following:
- Norton Ghost 2002 and earlier do not include the features Ghost Console, Ghost Multicast, and Ghost Walker. Instead, use the file Ghostpe.exe to create and restore image files.
- Norton Ghost 2003 does not include Ghost Console and Ghost Multicast but does include Ghost Walker. Note that the executable file for Norton Ghost 2003 is Ghost.exe, and not Ghostpe.exe.
- The model computer, as it is referred to in the following instructions, is the source computer. This is the computer that you want to create an image of.
- The client computer, as it is referred to in the following instructions, is the destination computer. This is the computer that you want to overwrite with the image.
- The Ghost client is a feature that is available only in the enterprise Ghost versions. It is used only with the Ghost Console. The consumer Ghost versions do not require a Ghost client.
See the section "Creating Sysprep configurations" to configure Sysprep:
- If you want to use the Ghost Multicast Server to pull the image from the model computer before rolling that image out with the Ghost Console, continue with Step 2.
- If you want to use the Ghost Console to pull the image from the model computer before rolling that image out with the Ghost Console, and you are using Symantec Ghost 7.5 or 8.0, prepare the model computer as in Step 2, and then configure an Image Dump Task to run Sysprep automatically. See the section "Configuring Ghost 7.5 or 8.0 to run Sysprep."
Prepare the model computer
Log on to the model computer with a user account that is a member of the local Administrator security group but is not the Administrator account. Do the following:
- Install and configure applications on the model computer.
- If the client computers have devices that the model computer does not have, add the driver files for those devices to the hard disk. When you add driver files for devices that will be attached to the client computers, such as network interface cards or hard drives that are not on the model computer, then the operating system on the client computer will configure itself automatically to the new hardware environment.
- Do not install the Ghost Client. Note that only the enterprise Ghost versions use the Ghost Client. These include Symantec Ghost 11.x, 8.x, or 7.x.
Log on to the model computer with the Administrator account. Do the following:
- Copy the contents of the user profile folder that is for the user account you used in Step 1 to the Default Users folder.
- Remove configuration information that is not applicable to the target computers, such as mapped drives, event logs, and so on.
- Install the Ghost Client. Skip this step if you are using a consumer version of Ghost. Only the enterprise Ghost versions use the Ghost Client. These include Symantec Ghost 11.x, 8.x, or 7.x..
- Remove the computer from the domain. Skip this step if the computer is not a member of a Windows domain. Stand-alone computers (that is, computers that are not connected to a network) are not members of a Windows domain.
Other steps to prepare the model computer
- If you are using Symantec Ghost 7.0 or earlier, or Norton Ghost 2003 or earlier, log on to the computer with the Administrator account and then run Sysprep. After running Sysprep, do not restart the computer into Windows. Restarting the computer into Windows at this time causes Windows to rebuild its Plug-and-Play database on the model computer instead of on the client computer.
- If you are using Symantec Ghost 7.5 or 8.0 and the Ghost Multicast Server to create the image file before rolling it out, log on to the computer with the Administrator account and then run Sysprep. After running Sysprep, do not restart the computer into Windows. Restarting the computer into Windows at this time causes Windows to rebuild its Plug-and-Play database on the model computer instead of on the client computer.
- If using Symantec Ghost 11.x, 8.x or 7.x. and the Ghost Console to create the image file before rolling it out, do not run Sysprep. Instead, continue with the instructions in the section "Configuring Ghost 7.5 or 8.0 to run Sysprep."
To create an image of the model computer
- If you are using Norton Ghost 2003 or earlier, start the computer from a Ghost bootable floppy disk, and then create the image file. Note that you cannot run Norton Ghost 2003 from the Ghost Basic and Backup options because the computer is shut down. Restarting the computer into Windows at this time (to use the Ghost Basic and Backup options) would cause Windows to rebuild its Plug-and-Play database on the model computer instead of on the client computer. To use these options rather than starting the computer from a bootable floppy disk, run Sysprep with the switch -noreboot. This switch prevents Sysprep from shutting down the computer. For more information on this switch, consult your Sysprep documentation.
- If using Symantec Ghost 8.0 or earlier, restart the model computer from a Ghost Network Boot Disk (also known as a Ghost Multicast Boot Disk), and then use Ghost Multicast Server to create an image file of the model computer.
To roll out the image to the client computers
- If you use Ghost Console to roll out the image, create a new Task. Do not check the SID Change option in the Task.
- If you use Ghost Multicast Server to roll out the image, do not use Ghost Walker after rolling out the image.
- If you use Norton Ghost 2003, use Ghost.exe to write the image to the destination computer.
- If you use Norton Ghost 2002 or earlier, use Ghostpe.exe to write the image to the destination computer.
- Restart the computers. Windows 2000 Professional, Windows XP and Windows Vista will detect the hardware, install the new drivers as appropriate, and assign new SIDs.
Creating Sysprep configurations
Running Sysprep correctly prevents problems when restoring the image file.
Sysprep has several options for configuring the computer, such as whether to have Sysprep automatically change the name of the computer or to have Sysprep change the Security Identification number (SID) of the computer. Each set of options is a separate Sysprep configuration.
Note: Symantec provides the following information as an aid to using Sysprep. This information is a suggestion only and is not intended to replace information from Microsoft.
Note: This information is only for Microsoft Windows 2000 and Windows XP.
Note: You will need to follow Microsoft documentation for creating configurations for the Vista version of Microsoft Sysprep which requires use of the Windows Automated Installation Kit.
To create a new Sysprep configuration
- Create a new folder. This folder will contain the Sysprep files. Ghost 7.5 and later does not require this folder to be on the root of the C drive. If you run Sysprep manually, Windows might require this folder to be on the root of the C drive.
- Follow the Microsoft instructions for creating a Sysprep.inf file and copy that file into the new folder. The options available for configuring Sysprep.inf depend on the version of Windows with which you will use Sysprep.inf file.
- Copy the Sysprep files into the new folder. For an image of a Windows 2000 installation, use Sysprep version 1.1 or later for Windows 2000. For an image of a Windows XP installation, use a version of Sysprep that is for Windows XP (See the previous section Sysprep versions).
Note: To configure Sysprep to assign a computer name that you specify or to randomly assign a computer name, edit the ComputerName entry in the file Sysprep.inf. For details, see the document Microsoft Windows 2000 Guide to Unattended Setup.
For information on configuring a Sysprep.inf file, consult your Microsoft documentation, search for information on the Microsoft Web site, or see the following documents:
- Microsoft Windows 2000 Guide to Unattended Setup
- Automating Windows 2000 Deployments with Sysprep
- How to automatically provide setup information for SysPrep at the destination computers
- Article 299840: How to use Sysprep with Windows Product Activation or Volume License Media to deploy Windows XP
Configuring Ghost 7.5 or 8.x to run Sysprep
Symantec Ghost 7.5 and later can run Sysprep for you. If you created more than one Sysprep configuration, you can specify which configuration to use in the Ghost Image Dump Task.
To create a Sysprep configuration to be used with Ghost
- Obtain the Sysprep files and save them to a folder on the hard disk. The Sysprep files must include Sysprep.exe and Setupcl.exe. Ghost does not require that this folder be on the root of the C drive.
- Create a custom Sysprep configuration. This step is optional. See the section "Creating Sysprep configurations."
To assign a Ghost name to each Sysprep configuration
- Open the Ghost Console.
- Click Tools > Sysprep Configurations...
- Type a name in the Sysprep Configuration Name box. The name should be what you want to give to the particular Sysprep configuration that you will choose in the next step. For instance, the name might be "Windows XP with SID" or "Windows 2000 with automatic computer names".
- Click Create. This step opens the "Browse for Folder" window. Click the folder that contains the Sysprep files. If you created a Sysprep configuration, use a folder that includes the file Sysprep.inf that is for this particular Sysprep configuration.
- Click OK, and then OK again.
- Repeat Steps 2 through 5 for each Sysprep configuration you want to use with Ghost.
To configure the Sysprep tab for the Task
- Click File > New > Image Dump. This opens the "Properties for a New Task" window. Do not choose Task rather than Image Dump. Choosing Task opens a different "Properties for a New Task" window. Only the window for Image Dump includes the Sysprep tab.
- Click the Sysprep tab.
- Check "Run Microsoft Sysprep on this computer before dumping the image."
- Choose the name of a Sysprep configuration in the Sysprep Configurations box.
- Check the other options as needed:
- If you want Sysprep to assign a SID to each client computer, check "Tell Sysprep to perform a SID change when loading this image to a destination machine."
- If you created a Sysprep.inf file for this Sysprep Configuration, check "Run the MiniSetup Wizard which processes the Sysprep.inf file (required for Windows XP Professional)."
- If you want to add additional options to the Sysprep.exe command line, type the options in the box "Extra Sysprep Command Line Arguments."
Configuring the Network tab is optional.
To configure the General tab
- To save this Task to be run later, select Create task definition.
- To run this Task now without saving the Task, select Execute immediately.
- Click other options as desired.
- Click OK. If you checked Execute immediately, the Image Dump Task restarts the model computer into a virtual boot partition and runs the Image Dump Task.
Ghost creates the image file and copies any necessary Sysprep files to the image file. When the process is complete, the computer displays a DOS prompt:
- To restart the model computer, type Ctrl+C to exit Ghost, and then type ngctdos -hide at the DOS command prompt. This command hides the Ghost Virtual partition so that the next restart will start from the Windows partition. When you restart the model computer, Sysprep runs automatically.
- To push this image file to the client computers, create an Image Load Task in Ghost. Ghost copies any necessary Sysprep files to the client computer and saves the files in a folder that is in an appropriate location on the hard disk. When the Task restarts the client computer after pushing the image to the client computer, Sysprep runs automatically.
"Ghost compatibility with Windows 2000." at:
- "Ghost and SysPrep command-line arguments." at:
- "Computer stops responding after restoring a Windows XP image to it." at:
- "Cannot save an image file when using Microsoft Sysprep 1.1." at:
- "How to use Sysprep with Windows Product Activation or Volume License Media to deploy Windows XP." at:
- "How to use the Sysprep tool to automate successful deployment of Windows XP." at:
- "The Computer May Stop Responding During the Shutdown Process When You Use the Sysprep Tool." at:
- "Computer May Hang After Using Sysprep on ACPI-Enabled Computer." at:
- "HOW TO: Add Customized User Settings When You Run Sysprep." at:
- "Microsoft whitepaper, introduction to using Windows 2000 Sysprep."
- "Microsoft Powerpoint presentation on using 2000 Sysprep." at:
Article URL http://www.symantec.com/docs/TECH107324