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Drivers Driving you Crazy? Here's a Tale to Ease the Torment

Created: 21 Sep 2007 • Updated: 21 Sep 2007 • 9 comments
daggy_b's picture
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At our company we manage seven different computer models. They're all HP, but not all of them have the same chipset.

Here's a problem we ran into and, of course, how we solved it.

La Problema

We had problems using the same image for the HP DC5000, DC5100, and DC5700 models. I could get one image to work between the DC5100 and the DC5000, but not the DC5700. Then I tried another image and got it to work with the DC5700 and DC5100 but not the DC5000.

It turns out that Intel has drivers that work with the DC5000 and DC5100, and then another that works with the DC5700 and the DC5100, but no driver that will work between the DC5000 and DC5700. I did some research on Intel's website and looked at older drivers to confirm this.

La Solución

The solution for us is to have one image that works on all models -- but the DC5700 -- and a separate image that works for the DC5700. In the image job on Deployment Server, I just added a condition for the DC5700 to use a different image for that computer model.

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jhallam3's picture

Creating an image for company use is complex enough without having to create an image for each type of vendor and then each model type.

Altrinsic (www.altrinsicsolutions.com) has created a tool which integrates in to Deployment Solution to discover what hardware and drivers are out in your organisation. This tool then uses the power of Deployment Solution to gather all the drivers into a driver repository to allow you to image a PC then deploy that image to any Vendor hardware or model without having to create multiple images.

Drastically saving time, management and effort in deploying images to desktops, Laptops, Notebooks, and Servers.

Thanks

Jon Hallam

ManagedDesktop.com

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jeremyboger's picture

We have the same issues here in our department. We discovered this issue years ago between the Compaq Evo D500 and Evo D510. We, too, discovered the only option was to create different images for the different models. Although it solved the imaging issue, it certainly did not save any time for us. We still had to completely gather two separate images from scratch due to the chipset differences.

Jeremy I. Boger
Network Technician
MSD of Lawrence Township

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BIvey's picture

We used a third party solution to package images. This solution provided one image that was hardware independent. We successfully created one image per user group (ie..remote, local) and regardless of hardware model or type, we could deploy the image to the machine. I found this the easiest way to maintain an image store. As we add new hardware we update the drivers via the utility and it will use the drivers necessary to get the hardware to work. There are probably several such software packages available. I would do an Internet search and find one that seems right for you. Pricing can be the hard part, but if you can demonstrate a business need, that might help.

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erikw's picture

In the heads-up you tell us how you solved it, but you did not really tell us.
How did you build the hardware independent Image?
Did you use additional tools?
How do you select the driver store?

That is interesting information!

Regards
Erik
www.svs4u.nl

Regards Erik www.DinamiQs.com Dinamiqs is the home of VirtualStorm (www.virtualstorm.org)

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Brandon's picture

Following standard HII practices you can remove all the drivers on your base image and set the keyboards, controllers, etc to standard. Sysprep that image and re-deploy it. Use injection with firm in your favorite preboot OS just after that image is layed down and before sysprep starts. You firm copy the drivers for each model in to your OEMPNPDriversPath from sysprep in this step. I built my base on a dc5000. I have imaged everything from a d510, d530, dc5000, dc5100, and dc5700 without copying HAL's or anything. I just pull the drivers from HP.com. I did have to add a hotfix for HD audio to get the dc5700's to work completely but that was easily done in the cmdlines.txt file during sysprep.

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tjwalters's picture

We've been trying to go for the best practices approach but since we're new to Altiris we've been having a bit of trouble. In the script, how do you pull the responses from the model type when you tokenize the sysprep file as mentioned in the best practices? It responds with a numeric code for the model but I can't seem to find where these are stored in the database. Would appreciate any help you could provide!!

Todd
tjwalters@redcapitalgroup.com

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Brandon's picture

If you need to find the model number you have several choices. Just echo it to the screen in your automation environment, install the aclient to the model you need and check the properties in the DS console, or run the following query against the eXpress database from Query Analyzer or SQL Server Manager Studio:

SELECT Computer.[prod_name], Computer.[model_num]
FROM Computer
WHERE Computer.[prod_name] <> ''
GROUP BY Computer.[model_num],Computer.[prod_name]

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Andrey Shipov's picture

Hi,
we use HP PCs in our company as well.

Desktops are more easier to create a single image for.
We have 1 image for 5 different Desktops models:
HP d530, dc7100, dc7600, dc7700 and dc7800

For each laptop (4 different models) we use individual images.

We also set SATA to emulate IDE in bios

I am working on the article about imaguing PCs and creating universal image with standard windows tools.

I will be looking at HII Tools soon.
Andrey Shipov
Manchesrter, UK

Andrey Shipov
IS Infrastructure Senior Engineer
Manchester, UK

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Antonp's picture

I see this is an old post.

But if you are still using this method of imaging, why not try using Hardware Independant Imaging or Scripted OS install where you have your base image and then just inject the drivers that you need. No need to have 7 different images that basicaly look the same and only differ in drivers.

Technical Consultant
Http://www.alttech.co.za

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