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How to Sysprep and capture Images to Windows Deployment Server WDS.

How to run System Preparation, and capture the Image to a Windows Deployment Server.

Once you have completed your installation of Windows with your desired programs and added feature’s you can start your SYSPREP.

· Insert your Windows XP CD into the CD-ROM Drive. This must be a Service Pack 2 Windows Disk or later if you’re trying to SYSPREP a Service Pack 2 or later PC.


· Once the disk is loaded, Open Windows Explorer and navigate to the root of the Disk. Once there go into the “Support” Folder. Once there, continue into the “Tools” Folder.
(Example: D:\support\tools)


· In the “tools” folder, find the “” file, open up this file by a double left click on it.


· Select all of the files in this folder, then right click and go to “copy” or hit ctrl+c.


· Now, you need to create a new folder in the Primary System Drive Directory (C:). This folder will be named “sysprep”. Once this folder is created, paste the copied files into this directory (c:\sysprep).


· Once this is complete, you are going to want to run the file “setupmgr.exe”. This will create an answer file for sysprep to use during the System Preparation.


· Once the Setup Manager has loaded, it will look this (above). At this screen you need to select “Create New”, and now press “next”. At the Next screen it will ask you to “choose a setup type:” You need to select “Sysprep Setup”, and then press next.


· Once that step is complete it will prompt you to select an Operating System, Select the appropriate Choice and then press “Next”.


· Once this is complete, you will see a question asking if you would like to fully automate the installation. You need to select “No” for this choice. Once that is complete, press “Next”.


· Now we are the stage of the sysprep where we create the answer file. As you can see on the image above, there is several catagories of the left hand side of the Setup Manager window. Name, Organazation, Etc. So for this step just fill out the approprate answer’s, or leave the sections blank to fill them out after deployment of the finished image. Continue on in the sections until you reach the “Product Key” page.


· Okay, now we are on the product key page. If you are running a Sysprep on a Volume License Build of Windows, it is best to enter your VLK (Volume License Key) here. If you are doing the Sysprep on an OEM or Retail copy of Windows, you need to leave this section blank. Once this is complete, hit “Next”.


· We are now on the “Computer Name” section. For this section, it is best to automatically generate a computer name. It will avoid confusion when deploying this image across multiple computer’s at once. It is best to simply re-name each PC to the desired name after the deployment of windows. Press “Next” to continue.

· Once this stage is done, you will be on the “Administrator Password” section. You can either, set a password now, or select “Prompt the End User for an Administrator Password”. I would recommend setting a “Master Password” across all of your Syspreped Images. Once this step is complete, simply press next though the remainder of the sections.


· Once you are at the end of the “Setup Manager”, click “finish to continue. Once complete it will prompt you for a save directory (as seen above). It will auto fill with the location “C:\sysprep\sysprep.inf”. Simply click “OK” to save the answer file.


· Once this is done, it will display a message saying “You have successfully completed the Setup Manager and have created the following files: C:\sysprep\sysprep.inf”. You are now done the Setup Manager, You can close this window now.

· Now we can start the SYSPREP of the machine. Navigate back to your SYSPREP directory (C:\sysprep). Once there execute the “sysprep.exe” file.


· You will receive this message (as seen above). Simply click “OK” to continue.


· Once you have clicked “OK” the “System Preparation Tool 2.0” will open. Once this is open you will need to check the “Use Mini Setup” check box. Also please be sure to make sure your Shutdown mode is on “Shut Down”. Make sure your System Preparation tool looks the same as above. If it does, you can now click on “Reseal”.


· Once you have done this, a window will pop up, this will basically confirm your choice to “Regenerate Security Identifiers”. Simply click okay to proceed. Once this is complete and Hour Glass logo will pop up and run “sysprep”. Once this finishes it will shut down.

· Now that the System Preparation phase is complete, we can continue to start the Image Capture. Turn your PC back on after it is fully shut down. Strike the F12 key upon post to boot off of the “Network Controller”.


· Once you have booted off the network, you will be prompted to select an “Operating System” by the Windows Deployment Server (as seen above). You will need to select “Capture Windows Setup (x86)”.
If you were doing a SYSPREP on a 64 bit system, you would select “Capture Windows Setup (x64)”.
Once you have selected your choice (Capture Windows Setup (x86), it will begin to load the Windows Deployment Image Capture Wizard.


· Once the loading is complete, you will see the Welcome Screen, Click “Next” to continue.


· Now you are at the “Directory to Capture” Screen, Here you will need to select the capture Volume, and also give your Image a name. For the “Volume to Capture” you need to select the “C:” From there, give your image a name, and a description. See the above image for an example. Once complete click “Next”.


· Once you have filled out that page with the necessary information, you will be at the “New Image Location” Screen. First, click on the “browse” button.


· Once you have clicked that, a new window will appear (as seen above). Here it is prompting for a save location of the Image you are about to capture. The reason this needs to be done is because, Windows Image Capture Wizard needs to save the Image to the Local System before it can upload it to the Windows Deployment Server. Here, Browse to the C: Of the computer. Click on “Computer” and then click on “C:” Once that is complete you need to enter in a File name, it can just be a temp name like “XP Image” or whatever you would like to name it.


· Once that step is complete, you need to enter the Windows Deployment Server Name. Proceed to click “Connect”. When it loads, it will prompt for a user name a password for the Windows Deployment Server. Remember to enter in the Domain before your user name. (domain\username). Once you enter your credentials, select an “Image Group Name”. Your Windows Deployment Server should have an appropriate Group Name for the image you are about to capture. Once you have selected your Image Group Name, Press “Next” to continue.


· The image has now started to Capture. This will go through the Capture of the image and the upload of the Image to your Windows Deployment Server. This will usually take between, 20 – 50 minutes, depending on your Hard Drive performance, and Network performance.


Congratulations, you have successfully run a System Preparation, and Captured the Image to Windows Deployment Services.

11 Comments Post a comment
  1. john wilkinson #

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