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Chapter 4: Introduction to Imaging using PXE

Created: 14 Apr 2008 • Updated: 07 Aug 2012 | 13 comments
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ianatkin's picture
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In this fourth article taken from my Deployment Solution Training notes, we will take a peek at imaging. We'll begin by covering some imaging basics with PXE, highlighting how the Deployment Solution agents work in partnership in both the imaging and user's environment to provide a seamless deployment mechanism.

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jjesse's picture

Great job Ian... Awesome infromation as always :)

Jonathan Jesse
Director of Training
ITS Partners

Jonathan Jesse Practice Principal ITS Partners

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savnhga's picture

I wish I would have had this document the first time I set up PXE, great work!

Thanks,

Chris Bashlor

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Jeremy Roberts's picture

As the Altiris PXE server often works straight out-the-box without tweaking

Oh how I laughed and laughed. PXE is fab when it works and real pain when it inexplicably decides today is the day. Oh and don't ever do an upgrade.

Otherwise an good article.

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Raman's picture

Really a good explanation, really appreciate

Regards
Darshan
MCSE,CCNA,MCTS,ITIL V3

Regards
Darshan
MCSE,CCNA,MCTS,ITIL V3

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moxikvk's picture

Nicely explianed the process of PXE..

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djezg3275's picture

Hello everyone, I am new to this Altiris process also and need some serious help. I have been putting this project on hold for a bit because I travel a lot for my job. I only have a few more weeks to get this done before I go back on the road. So please if anyone can assist I would greatly appreciate it. I recently set up the system and started creating images to deploy to my brand new, never been touched, Lenovo Laptops T500,2gig, 160 gig, Dual core Cintrino 2.8ghz. and Think Center pc's with simular stats. So far creating the PC's images and deploying them seem to be ok. My problem exist witht he Laptops. I can get them to create the images but when the image is done and the sysprep begins to restart windows, I get the BSB (blue screen blues) and the system continues to reboot. The error message is Driver IRQ error and a code of 0x00000D1. have looked it up and it never fails the code make no sense as to what's happening or how to resolve the error ez. So the chase is on. Below are the steps I am using.

  1. Start laptop
  2. Switch the boot order to boot from lan
  3. Once up, remove all non standard software (MS Office Promo and McAfee). Install all MS and IBM think advantage recommended update. Reboot. 
  4. Install Aclient v6.9.366 x86 reboot.
  5. Check connectivity to DS. Fire off the create disk image with Sysprep in place, to get the Base image. laptop comes back ok, so far.
  6. Once done, Add standard Licensed Company software (trend micro,MS office,win zip,Secure remote, RAdmin viewer, Lotus notes 8.5, webshots, the basics.
  7. Fire of another create image to capture the basic distribution.
  8. At this poit the Image creates sucsessfully and the latop beging to reboot in to sysprep again.
  9. it gives me the 52 fake out that it's booting into windows. Then it happens BSB and reboots begin.
  10. I have even tried putting back the orginal image I created. You guessed it BSB again.

Did  I mention, I could use some serious help. I am almost at a stand still till I get pass this point.

 

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ianatkin's picture

Hi,

Whenever I get odd issues like this, my first port of call is to update the system BIOS and then the drivers. The critical ones are usually the VGA and storage drivers. Pop over to the lenovo site and make sure you've got the latest and greatest  installed.

Kind Regards,
Ian./


Ian Atkin, IT Services, Oxford University, UK

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misteraltiris's picture

Great intro to PXE boot. Can anyone point me in the right direction for information on setting up a image reposritry box. We have a DR site and I wish to PXe boot but use a local image server so the line is not over utilised. Any help would be great

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Avinash.Rao's picture

Hi Guys,

I want to start imaging without PXE service. I am using DS 6.9 - SP5 and for some reason I am not able to use PXE in my network, can I boot the machines using a USB/CD to connect to the DS server and deploy an image manually?

Thanks.

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fattese's picture

Hello, I am in a similar situation to where PXE is not currently an option on my network and would like to use boot media to connect to my SMP 7.1 server. Have you made in progress with this? If so I would like to hear how it works.

Thanks.

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ianatkin's picture

On most of our networks here, we can't deploy PXE. We use USB flash drives with syslinux which hosts both linux and WinPE automation options. I've got a document out here on connect titled "Don't let usb creator eat your thumb drives" -this will help.

We also have an in-house solution called 'SmartImage'. This searches for the required image file on the local drives before resorting to the server hosted image for deployment.

Sorry for brevity. Am currently heavily participating in IT rollout celebrations ;-)

Kind Regards,
Ian./ 

Ian Atkin, IT Services, Oxford University, UK

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Avinash.Rao's picture

Hi,

 

Thank for the message. 

How do I access the document?

Avinash

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ianatkin's picture

A Google/Connect search would have served you much faster than me here ;-)

The BootDisk Creator document I was referring to is here,
http://www.symantec.com/connect/articles/dont-let-bootdisk-creator-eat-your-thumb-drive

Kind Regards,
Ian./

Ian Atkin, IT Services, Oxford University, UK

Connect Etiquette: "Mark as Solution" those posts which resolve your problem, and give a thumbs up to useful comments, articles and downloads

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