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Sysprep Image Problem

    Question

  • Hi,

    I'm creating my reference PC with all software, drivers, updates installed etc...

    I've managed to successfully capture a 'version 1' of my image but when I add all my software, drivers etc.. and then sysprep I recieving the following error message upon reboot:

    "Windows could not finish configuring the system. To attempt to resume configuration, restart the computer".

    So I reboot but get the same message and my reference image is trashed.

    Is there a way of working out what is causing this? (I have tried installing one app at a time but cannot work out what it is!)

    Many thanks,

    Matt Courtman


    Matt Courtman Network Manager Cromwell Community College, UK
    Thursday, November 25, 2010 12:23 PM

All replies

  • Did you install Antivirus software?
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    Thursday, November 25, 2010 1:41 PM
  • No, I haven't installed any antivirus software. What I have installed is:

    Windows 7 Pro (through MDT), Office 2010, Project 2010, Visio 2010, Windows Live Movie Maker, All Windows Updates (Including Silverlight), SIMS (not the game), Adobe CS4 Package, Adobe Premier, and lots and lots of small applications such as Audacity, Abobe Reader, Flash, Shockwave, Air, Java, RealPlayer, Quicktime etc....

    I think it's something to do with all the Unattend.xml I have - to be honest I'm a bit lost with these.

    I have one in my c:\windows\system32\sysprep directory and my 'capture' sequence on MDT has one also.

    What I've been doing is:

    1) Install all software, drivers and updates on reference PC, set all Start Menu, Desktop items as I want

    2) Run sysprep /generalize /oobe /shutdown /unattend:c:\windows\system32\sysprep\unattend.xml    (The system then powers off)

    3) Network boot the PC and chose the 'Capture' task sequence that I have created                            (A WIM file is created in the 'captures' folder on my MDT)

    4) The machine reboots goes through the motions and displays the error message I stated earlier

    I just want to be able to setup a reference PC, capture to a WIM file and deploy but I've spent the best part of 2 weeks and I keep falling at the last hurdle.

    Any help is gratefully received.

    Matt Courtman

     


    Matt Courtman Network Manager Cromwell Community College, UK
    Thursday, November 25, 2010 2:10 PM
  • Without logfiles it's rather hard to troubleshoot, only thing I would suggest at this time would be to capture the image again without specifying an answer file, and copy a windows 7 install media to hdd, and then replace the install.wim file with the newly captured wim file, and make sure to also name it install.wim and then install windows 7 from either a dvd, ufd or network share, just not through mdt.

    This way at the very least you can check if it's your answerfile or not.

    As for programs some software (good example is antivirus software) does not behave well when a sysprep with generalize option is used, the Microsoft software shouldn't have any problems, and I also know that Adobe Reader,Flash and Shockwave are also not a problem. The other ones that you use, I have never tested those though.


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    Thursday, November 25, 2010 2:59 PM
  • Don't know if this means anything but....

    When I create my image I have a HDD (C:\) and a DVD Drive (D:\)

    If I run sysprep /generalize /oobe /shutdown /unattend:c:\windows\system32\sysprep\unattend.xml and just reboot (No Capture through MDT) it goes through the motions and when I log in I still have the same drive configuration.

    If I run sysprep /generalize /oobe /shutdown /unattend:c:\windows\system32\sysprep\unattend.xml THEN CAPTURE MY IMAGE (Using MDT), when I log in I have and extra drive. HDD (C:\) HDD (D:\) and DVD Drive (E:\). The new partition (D:\) is 300MB in size and is labelled BDE.


    Matt Courtman Network Manager Cromwell Community College, UK
    Thursday, November 25, 2010 3:47 PM
  • That partition is for Bitlocker, it contains the windows boot loader, and also windows re. This allows your system to be encrypted.

    If I'm not mistaken though, by default this is not enabled so I believe you have this setting enabled when you went through the lti wizard, or it's already set in the customsettings.ini .

     

    Use this task to enable the BitLocker task. BitLocker Drive Encryption is a full-disk encryption feature included in Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 designed to protect data by providing encryption for entire volumes. By default, it uses the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES), also known as Rijndael, a block cipher adopted as an encryption standard by the U.S. government.

    The AES algorithm in Cipher-block Chaining mode with a 128-bit key is often combined with the Elephant diffuser for additional security. BitLocker Drive Encryption is available only in the Enterprise and Ultimate editions of Windows 7 and Windows Vista Enterprise, Windows Server 2008 R2, and Windows Server 2008.

    Select one of the following methods of enabling BitLocker Drive Encryption:

    ·         In a task sequence, enable the BitLocker task.

    In addition, configure the partition in the Format and Partition task, which is necessary for New Computer scenarios but not in Refresh Computer or Update Computer scenarios. The most common configurations are:

    ·         One partition: 100%

    ·         One partition and some unallocated space

    ·         In the Windows Deployment Wizard, configure the BitLocker page. This requires that the Enable BitLocker task be enabled in the task sequence used for deployment.

    ·         In the CustomSettings.ini file, set the following properties:

    ·         BDEInstall=TPM

    ·         BdeInstallSuppress=NO

    ·         BDeWaitForEncryption=False

    ·         BDEDriveSize=2000

    ·         BDEDriveLetter=S:

    ·         BDEKeyLocation=C:

    ·         SkipBitLocker=YES

    Thursday, November 25, 2010 4:47 PM
  • Thanks for the info.

    I'm using Windows 7 Professional - maybe that's my issue?

    In my Deployment Share Options I do have the SkipBitLocker=YES

    Is there a simple way for it just to not install/enable the bitlocker.

    Matt


    Matt Courtman Network Manager Cromwell Community College, UK
    Thursday, November 25, 2010 6:06 PM
  • BREAKING NEWS

    I've spent the afternoon creating a new reference PC from scratch. I installed Windows 7 (via DVD not MDT 2010) and immediately after logging in I ran Sysprep with my Unattend.xml file. It came through perfectly - everything such as Locale setup as it should be. But I ran Sysprep another 6 times in total to be sure (and to prove that the SkipRearm="1" setting was working). Excellent!

    So next I installed all the small and bespoke applications, Syspreped with my Unattend.xml and used Ghost to create an image (Ver1). After rebooting and going through Sysprep stages the PC came through just as it should. Excellent!

    So I installed Office 2010, Project 2010 and Visio 2010, Syspreped with my Unattend.xml and again used Ghost to create an image (Ver2). After rebooting and going through Sysprep stages the PC came through just as it should. Excellent!

    So then I installed all Updates (including ones for Office) Syspreped with my Unattend.xml and again used Ghost to create an image (Ver3). However after rebooting the PC halted during the Sysprep stage with the error message "Windows could not finish configuring the system. To attempt to resume configuration, restart the computer".

    So the problem is with one or more of the windows updates. I'm going to try with a) Just the Windows Updates and b) Just the Office Update.......

     


    Matt Courtman Network Manager Cromwell Community College, UK
    Thursday, November 25, 2010 6:38 PM
  • Well at least you managed to narrow it down, that helps alot. Just be sure that no reboots are required prior to sysprepping your system and that all the updates have been configured.

    About the bitlocker thing, I'm uncertain why it shows up for you, since it shouldn't unless you specificly enable it (and next to that it cant even run on Pro). What does your partition step look like? Does it only create one partition, or multiple?


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    Thursday, November 25, 2010 9:15 PM
  • Hi,

    I have 3 Unattend.xml files:

    The one I've been using with Ghost has no format/partitioning info at all. It simply contains bits such as CopyProfile, Locale, TimeZone, SkipEULA, SkipRearm and not much else. Basically it allows me to Sysprep the machine to remove Driver stuff, change the SID and doesn't reset the activiation clock and answers all the OOBE stuff apart from requiring you to enter the Computer Name on boot up. Oh it also adds a local user called 'Administrator', sets the password and auto-logs in 5 times.

    The other two Unattend.xml answer files contain a bit more stuff but I'm not sure actually which one does what. One is attached to the 'Capture' sequence the other to the 'Deploy' sequence on my MDT server.

    Should I be Syspreping my machine before using MDT to capture it using: sysprep /generalize /oobe /shutdown /unattend:c:\windows\system32\sysprep\unattend.xml when the capture sequence then has it's own Unattend.xml?

    Could someone clarify if the capture sequence actually Syspreps with an answer file and if so am I making a big mistake in running Sysprep myself?

    Many thanks! Matt


    Matt Courtman Network Manager Cromwell Community College, UK
    Thursday, November 25, 2010 10:33 PM
  • Good Morning Matt,

    Well I have some good news for you, and less good news for myself ;). I managed to reproduce the error, when I sysprep one of my images now, I will also get the same message as you do when you boot up the pc again after the sysprep process.

    While in fact wether this error is present now on my images or not (or lets say I can trigger it..) it doesn't really matter in my situation at this moment. But now that I know it's possible I want to figure out what causes it.

     "Windows could not finish configuring the system. To attempt to resume configuration, restart the computer".

    I'm testing something right now, so I'll get back to you about this in a bit.


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    Friday, November 26, 2010 10:05 AM
  • Hi Stephan,

    Thanks for your efforts with this, however after many hours and many new clean images I have worked out what is causing the problem:

    A clean image of Windows 7 Pro with just all of the Windows Updates installed - Syspreps fine :)

    A clean image of Windows 7 Pro without any Windows Updates, but with Movie Maker Live 2011 installed - Syspreps fine :)

    A clean image of Windows 7 Pro with all the Windows Updates AND with Movie Maker Live 2011 installed - Sysprep fails :(

    So it seems the problem occurs when you install Movie Maker Live 2011 and all the Windows Updates.

    Would you be able to replicate this to confirm my suspicions?

    Many thanks,

    Matt


    Matt Courtman, Network Manager, Cromwell Community College, UK
    Friday, November 26, 2010 2:25 PM
  • Hi Matt,

    Sorry for responding so late, I left work yesterday since I wasn't feeling too well so I couldn't continue the research untill later on friday and today. I can confirm your suspicion, but there's also a way around it (more then one actually). I'll do a full write up tomorrow on my findings, including solution.


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    Saturday, November 27, 2010 8:24 PM
  • Hi Matt,

     

    Here's my conclusion;

    Installing Windows Live Essentials 2011 prior to running windows updates, will cause the error. The error will only occur if you install updates that require the pc to reboot while already having WLE2011 installed.

    Uninstalling WLE2011 will not help, the damage already has been done.

    It's not just Movie Maker, installing for example nothing but the Messenger from WLE2011 will give exactly the same error.

    Running sysprep without /generalize will not cause the error.

    In the worst case, you'll have to rebuild your images again, but this time start with updating windows untill there is no update left, then install your the programs you want included in your image. Doing it in this order will not prompt you with that error.

    I've done a more complete writeup on my blog which you can read here.

     

    Kind regards,

    Stephan Schwarz.


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    Sunday, November 28, 2010 1:44 AM
  • Hi Stephan,

    I'm glad you receive the same error as I thought I was going mad. Is there a chance that Microsoft might read this thread and correct the problem?

    I work in a large College and really need Movie Maker 2011 and all the Updates installed for Security reasons.

    I'll try installing all the updates and then MM like you suggest.

    Do you know if there's an offline Movie Maker Live 2011 installer (with swithes to only install MM and not Mail/Messenger etc...)? I I could use this to deploy MM after Windows 7.

    Many thanks,

    Matt

     


    Matt Courtman, Network Manager, Cromwell Community College, UK
    Monday, November 29, 2010 9:27 AM
  • Hi Matt,

    We can only hope that they'll read it and find time to address the issue at hand.

    As for the question whether there is an offline movie maker live 2011 installer,... there is.

    Well actually it is the entire suite of WLE2011. As an OEM partner you have access to the various OPK's (OEM preinstallation kits) which contain alot of detailed information how to run installers silently and include or exclude things. link: http://www.microsoft.com/oem/en/downloads/Pages/windows_live_essentials_opk.aspx

    Since you work at a College, I don't think you guys have an oem partner account so I'll paste the specific part of information regarding how to install only specified applications;

    Selecting Applications to Install
    
    The installer allows you to customize the selection of programs using a parameter called /appSelect. If the installer is run silently (with the /q parameter discussed above), then only the programs specified by /appSelect will be installed. If the installer is run interactively, then only the specified programs will be pre-selected by default, but the user may change the selection.
    Programs are selected by listing the product IDs that correspond to the programs you want to install. 
    Product IDs are listed in the following table.
    
    Product 	ID
    Messenger 	Messenger
    Mail		Mail
    Photo Gallery	PhotoGallery
    Movie Maker 	MovieMaker 
    Mesh 		WlSync
    Family Safety	FamilySafety
    Writer 		Writer
    Companion	Companion
    
    NOTE: Photo Gallery and Movie Maker must be installed together. If you select either product, both will be installed.
    NOTE: If any Windows Live programs are already installed, they will be updated to the latest versions regardless of what product IDs are selected.
    
    Syntax:
    /appSelect: appSelect:[All][!]<productId> [,<productId>]
    Options
    productId – Identifies the product to select, from the table above
    All – selects all the products (this is the default if /appSelect is not used)
    ! (NOT operator) – prepended to a productdId or All to explicitly deselect that product
    
    
    Examples:
    wlsetup.exe /appSelect:All,!Messenger,!Mail
    Installs all of the products except Messenger and Mail
    
    wlsetup.exe /appSelect:Messenger
    Only installs Messenger
    

    Note: I do not know if these command line switches will also work with the wlsetup-all.exe and wlsetup-web.exe, the first file comes from downloading WLE2011 from Windows Update, and will be placed in your %windir%\SoftwareDistribution\Download folder. The -web file is downloaded from the WLE site itself.

    Edit; I just tried applying the unattended switch with a single application from WLE2011 on the wlsetup-web.exe and that went flawless.

    A few more switches that might apply for you; /noHomepage /noSearch /noLaunch, these prevent the installer from setting a new homepage, change the search engine in IE, and will not launch the application after it's installed.

    I hope this helps you out.

    Kind regards,

    Stephan


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    Monday, November 29, 2010 2:02 PM
  • Hi Stephan,

    Been doing some more testing... I installed only Windows 7, Office 2010, Project 2010 and Visio 2010 and all the Windows and Office Updates rebooted a few times, disabled Automatic updates and finally installed Movie Maker. (So no updates after installing Movie Maker) However during Sysprep it still trashed my machine.

    I think I've found a solution:

    Sysprep fails at the stage 'Setup is starting services' and after installing Movie Maker I noticed there is a new service called Windows Live ID Sign In Assistant. So I started building a new reference machine as before (with Office 2010, Updates and finally Movie Maker) but this time I stopped and disabled this new service and Sysprep goes through no problems.

    I'm going to run this test again to be sure, but would you have time to also try this?

    Many thanks,

    Matt

    PS: Thanks for info regarding Windows Live Offline Installation


    Matt Courtman, Network Manager, Cromwell Community College, UK
    Monday, November 29, 2010 2:21 PM
  • Heya Matt,

    Somehow my post didn't went through since I already replied once lol, but I've tested your suggestion up to a certain point. I currently do not have Project and Visio 2010 here at home to install it on my VM's, but even so.. I loaded up a snapshop where I made sure to install WLE first, and then fully update it which would yield the error... so I went stopped and disabled the Windows Live ID Sign In Assistant service, but after sysprepping it will still return that error.

    I could add Office 2010 on one of my images and see how that goes, since maybe once you add in other factors again then my first solution will not work anymore (installing WLE last and then make sure no more updates that require a reboot are installed).


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    Monday, November 29, 2010 10:15 PM
  • Hello All,

    Sorry for interjecting into this discussion.

    However, I was wondering if I would be able to get some help from either of you regarding the process to "sysprep". I have the unattended XML file created and Windows 7 Enterprise installed onto my test workstations but I am getting stuck at the sysprep not accepting the drivers and installing them into the image. Once that is done, I will eventually need to install the same programs and image everything using Ghost.

    Since what I am working on is nearly identical to what Matt is working on, I am hoping one of you can help? If you have any questions, please feel free to hammer away at me, this is my first time working with Windows 7 sysprep.

    Again, pardon the intrusion.

    Thanks,
    Andrew
    • Edited by anbu9 Monday, November 29, 2010 10:48 PM update
    Monday, November 29, 2010 10:17 PM
  • Hi Andrew,

    No apology needed, however I do have some questions for you then.

    Why use ghost if I may ask? MDT really works like a charm and the learning curve isn't all that steep if you ask me! Either way, please tell me the exact problem that you're having and what you have tried so far already. Also are all the machines identical in hardware? And you're planning on rolling out images containing a part of Windows Live Essentials 2011 (any or all of it, doesn't matter) as well?

     

    Kind regards,

    Stephan


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    Monday, November 29, 2010 11:20 PM
  • Hi Stephan,

    I also stopped and disabled the "Windows Media Player Network Sharing Service" ax I had read that it can cause problems not too unlike ours.

    Matt


    Matt Courtman, Network Manager, Cromwell Community College, UK
    Tuesday, November 30, 2010 9:18 AM
  • Hello Stephan,

    Thanks for replying.

    The version of ghost is 11.5.1 which comes from Symantec Ghost Solution Suite 2.5. I have installed the MDT (Microsoft Development Toolkit?), but once it was installed it appeared to be a bit complex for me so I tried to skip using it. I will take another look today and see what I can do.

    What I have tried so far was to create an unattend.xml file which has some basic configuration settings such as Driver paths (level 1 and 2), skiprearm (level 3), skip activation (level 4) and location/company settings (level 7). These settings are literally what I have configured.

    Overall, this is where I am currently at the moment. I have a workstation (the computers I am working on all have the same hardware, though eventually I want to put this on different hardware) with Windows 7 Enterprise installed and used (Crtl, Shift, F3) to access audit mode. Once logged into Audit mode, I put some drivers (into the system drive) and my XML file (into the sysprep folder) and then Ghosted the PC in case of any problems (easy to go back).

    *Regarding the software, the goal is to try and roll out Windows Live Essentials 2011 (specifically the Windows Live photo gallery and movie maker), along with other programs. But it is less of a priority for now since the main trouble is getting a basic image setup and working (without software).

    Is there any advice on what I should look at or consider?

    Thanks!

    • Edited by anbu9 Tuesday, November 30, 2010 3:10 PM added information
    Tuesday, November 30, 2010 3:05 PM
  • Hi Stephan,

    I also stopped and disabled the "Windows Media Player Network Sharing Service" ax I had read that it can cause problems not too unlike ours.

    Matt


    Matt Courtman, Network Manager, Cromwell Community College, UK


    Hi Matt,

    I just gave that another run, that will not solve the issue. Having both services disabled will not result in the pc actually be able to boot after it's sysprepped (in the scenario where WLE is installed prior to WU).

    Also I've added Office 2010 Pro Plus to the VM snapshot that was able to boot into windows after being sysprepped (WLE installed after WU) and this did not cause any issues, even while actually running windows updates after installing Office 2010 to get the updates for Office. Office updates dont require your pc to be rebooted, so this didn't cause any issues.

     

    Stephan.


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    Tuesday, November 30, 2010 5:54 PM
  • Hello Stephan,

    Thanks for replying.

    The version of ghost is 11.5.1 which comes from Symantec Ghost Solution Suite 2.5. I have installed the MDT (Microsoft Development Toolkit?), but once it was installed it appeared to be a bit complex for me so I tried to skip using it. I will take another look today and see what I can do.

    What I have tried so far was to create an unattend.xml file which has some basic configuration settings such as Driver paths (level 1 and 2), skiprearm (level 3), skip activation (level 4) and location/company settings (level 7). These settings are literally what I have configured.

    Overall, this is where I am currently at the moment. I have a workstation (the computers I am working on all have the same hardware, though eventually I want to put this on different hardware) with Windows 7 Enterprise installed and used (Crtl, Shift, F3) to access audit mode. Once logged into Audit mode, I put some drivers (into the system drive) and my XML file (into the sysprep folder) and then Ghosted the PC in case of any problems (easy to go back).

    *Regarding the software, the goal is to try and roll out Windows Live Essentials 2011 (specifically the Windows Live photo gallery and movie maker), along with other programs. But it is less of a priority for now since the main trouble is getting a basic image setup and working (without software).

    Is there any advice on what I should look at or consider?

    Thanks!

    Hello,

    Ok, I think I see your problem. First off let me see if I fully understand your scenario..

    You have installed windows 7 ent. on a pc that will function as your reference pc. You have booted into Audit mode to configure your image according to your needs. You also created a directory on the "OS-Disk" which includes your drivers, you created an unattended file that specifies the driver path on the OS-Disk. But after you sysprep your system, it will not apply these drivers?

    If this is your problem the issue that you're having let me know, since if that's the case I know what's going wrong.


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    Tuesday, November 30, 2010 6:30 PM
  • Hello,

    Ok, I think I see your problem. First off let me see if I fully understand your scenario..

    You have installed windows 7 ent. on a pc that will function as your reference pc. You have booted into Audit mode to configure your image according to your needs. You also created a directory on the "OS-Disk" which includes your drivers, you created an unattended file that specifies the driver path on the OS-Disk. But after you sysprep your system, it will not apply these drivers?

    If this is your problem the issue that you're having let me know, since if that's the case I know what's going wrong.


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    Hey Stephan,

    That is pretty much what I am stuck on and trying to do at the moment.

    I am also working with the MDT 2010 that you mentioned in a previous post and was able to create a "configuration share" with an OS, drivers and a few test programs. All of these items were "updated" and can be put onto a Media device, which I believe is a Flash drive. I am just not sure how this will work with the unattended XML file and ghost.

    Thanks,

    Andrew

     

    Tuesday, November 30, 2010 7:38 PM
  • Hello,

    Ok, I think I see your problem. First off let me see if I fully understand your scenario..

    You have installed windows 7 ent. on a pc that will function as your reference pc. You have booted into Audit mode to configure your image according to your needs. You also created a directory on the "OS-Disk" which includes your drivers, you created an unattended file that specifies the driver path on the OS-Disk. But after you sysprep your system, it will not apply these drivers?

    If this is your problem the issue that you're having let me know, since if that's the case I know what's going wrong.


    If you found a post helpfull, please click on "Mark as answer".

    Hey Stephan,

    That is pretty much what I am stuck on and trying to do at the moment.

    I am also working with the MDT 2010 that you mentioned in a previous post and was able to create a "configuration share" with an OS, drivers and a few test programs. All of these items were "updated" and can be put onto a Media device, which I believe is a Flash drive. I am just not sure how this will work with the unattended XML file and ghost.

    Thanks,

    Andrew

     


    Hi Andrew,

    As you have seen in the WSIM, the unattended file consists out of multipe so called "configuration passes". The Pass "WindowsPE" and "offlineServicing" will only work if you were actually running the setup of windows (this is a WinPE environment). The first pass that will run once a system has been sysprepped with /generalize is, Specialize. With this logic you should understand that the driver paths that you have supplied, are infact (while valid) skipped.

    There are really alot of methods that you could use.. I think this post will end up being longer then I first planned :)

    First off, the way you planned on doing it will simply not work at all, period. Here are a few suggestions you can do.

    You can include the driver that you want by adding them into the windows driver store, the utility to use for that (while running windows) is pnputil with the -a switch. And example would be pnputil -a D:\Drivers\*.inf, this will place the driver in the store, and whenever a matching device has been detected, it will install the driver that you added. This is pretty much the only method you can use to add drivers to windows, if you do not plan on using microsoft provided solutions to deploy windows. Run sysprep with your unattended file /generalize option must be used when you want to clone your disks, or capture them for redeploying on other machines!

    Next option I'll be rather quick about, since it's not really what you're looking for either, but just as a reference; if you were to capture the image using imagex, you'll end up with a wim file, and you could use DISM to add drivers to that image, and updates, change(enable/disable) features, change the unattend file that is being used or set or change regional settings for that image. But you cannot use this in conjunction with ghost and it's all manual labor. In the end you could then deploy that image by usb/dvd/wds/mdt/sccm but this is really not the way to go especially when you are unfamiliar with imagex and dism since you could do pretty much all of that simply with MDT which will do so much more, and will make it a lot easier to deploy images.

    The main difference with Ghost and MDT, whether it's run from usb/dvd/hdd/wds, is that with ghost, you simply replicate a disk to another. But with mdt, you technically "install" every single pc (you apply the image that you created to the disk, this is done within the windows setup). The general gist of it is this... You launch mdt from (looks like you want the usb approach since you mentioned this) from usb, you get a small wizard that you can customize if you want to predefine certain answers, these answers will then be parsed and will update the unattend.xml file that mdt created when you made the task sequence (can find this xml file in the <deploymentshare>\Control\[TaskSequenceID] folder) and then call the setup and supply the unattend.xml file that should be used to create your automated install. If you added drivers to the share, great, since it will simply use pnpdevice id's to scan whether matching drivers are found within your share and copy those over to the system disk, and the unattend file from mdt itself will already create a reference to this, so that once windows is at the stage to install them, it knows where to find them.

    In general a Ghost images is larger in filesize then a windows image, and it really doesn't that much longer to provision a system with an OS with mdt, compared to ghost. Also when you do the ghost approach, will either need to have the drivers already added to the driver store of windows before you image it.... but in general it's a best practice to add as few as possible drivers to the windows installation itself, since it can cause problems trust me (been there, done that). Or what you could do, is modify the registry so that windows will look in more then one place to find drivers..

    You can modify current registry key to let windows look in more then one place for it's drivers, this is pretty much the only way other then the previously mentioned method with pnputil. [HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\Currentversion] they entry of interest is called "DevicePath", by default it should have a value of "%systemroot%\inf" you can add other directories to this path by adding a semicolon and then add the next path. Example: %SystemRoot%\Inf; C:\Drivers; C:\Somemoredrivers

    If you add a driver path, it will scan that directory recursivly, meaning it will search for all drivers in that directory and sub-directory.

    There are many good guides around how to use MDT2010 for deploying windows 7, an example is http://www.windowsnetworking.com/articles_tutorials/Deploying-Windows-7-Part1.html there are a lot of screenshots in here, and it isn't all that technical to read. Also a few customizations are provided as examples. I still encourage you to look at that method if it's possible (installations over network with WDS & MDT is really great!)

    As for WLE2011, I suggest keep an eye out on this thread, but as of now, the only solution to not get a botched image, will be to install WLE2011, or just the Movie Maker component, as the very last thing that you do on your machine.

     

    Kind regards,

    Stephan Schwarz

     


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    Tuesday, November 30, 2010 9:41 PM
  • Wow, that is quite a detailed explanation, thanks!

    After reading your post and a few others online, I have gathered that the method I was using may no longer be viable for Windows 7 and was only for Windows XP, which is quite a shame. However I was wondering how you were helping Matt with his issue. One of his posts mentioned using Ghost, sysprep and the unattend.xml file. I know you mentioned that what I was working on before would not work, but is it ultimately possible to have a way in which Windows 7 can be installed, have the system drivers and programs install themselves in addition to being ghost-able? (Please see next paragraph)

    The current process for deploying our Windows XP images is to use Ghost 11.5.1 from a bootable-PE environment such as Bart-PE. We had a single image that was able to install on multiple computer types which was created on a workstation and then stored on a network file server. Whenever we needed a new computer, all that was done was to boot BartPE, load Ghost and then restore the image to the intended workstation and select the model for sysprep to install drivers. Any time we had to make edits or additions to the image, we just used a baseline copy and made the necessary tweaks (added/removed programs or system drivers). The original goal of this project was to follow the same or similar process we did for XP.

    Regarding the MDT, I know I mentioned using a flash drive, but when I copied the data to the flash drive and restarted the computer it did not work. Is it possible that I missed a step to make the flash drive bootable (as yes, I told the computer to boot from the flash drive)?
        I was successful booting and installing a Windows 7 version once the ISO file was burned to DVD and the computer restarted (in this instance, the drivers were installed, but programs did not install automatically, but I believe it was because I did not use silent install switches or MSI packages). The one thing I did not check for was whether or not our company information was added via the unattend.xml file. (** I made some tweaks to the MDT today was able to get some programs working using "silent" switches or .MSI packages, however some were outright failures, though I digress). What this did make me realize is that installing Windows 7 this way will not allow me to tweak some programs before they are deployed to the users.

    The only reason we used the ghost images was because it was easy to store the images on our file server and the use the bart-pe CD. From what I noticed in comparison was that the MDT was only ISO files which needed to be burned to copied to a flash drive (didn't work). Currently to my knowledge, this would create more work in terms of storing the images and restoring them since we will eventually need to store and manage either separate multiple images or a single image (unified) for multiple computers. As stated above, this was our original reason for wanting to continue using Ghost for Windows 7.

    One of your explanations for adding drivers referred to the "windows driver store". Would adding the drivers here need to be done after a fresh install of WIndows 7 and then putting the drivers onto the computer?

    I honestly did not think this project would be so complicated and as before, your help is very much appreciated. Also, I apologize if this post was confusing, I tried clarifying it while answering your questions.

    - Andrew
    • Edited by anbu9 Wednesday, December 01, 2010 10:34 PM
    Wednesday, December 01, 2010 2:48 AM
  • Stephan,

    You were right; stopping the two services I mentioned doesn't solve the problem after all. It's did work once when I tried it!

    I've just downloaded Movie Maker 2.6, which is not as up-to-date as I'd like but it's newer than the copy that ships with XP.

    Hopefully Microsoft will pull thier finger out and find a solution.

    Thanks for your help and advice.

    Best wishes,

    Matt


    Matt Courtman, Network Manager, Cromwell Community College, UK
    Wednesday, December 01, 2010 10:18 AM
  • Just for further reference's. (I got a link again to this forum from someone else who has the same issue, but noticed I never posted the answer to the thread once I found it)

     

    A fix was released for this; Hotfix KB981542 fixed this problem. Service Pack 1 for Windows 7 also resolves the problem.

     

    Kind regards,

    Stephan Schwarz


    If you one of these posts answered your question or issue, please click on "Mark as answer". If a post contained helpfull information, please be so kind to click on the "Vote as helpful" button :)
    Tuesday, April 19, 2011 10:16 AM
  • I just experienced the same problem with a Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 install. So I tried a second time and did not install anything to do with Windows Live. Same problem where windows can not continue set-up and must reboot in an infinite loop after system preping to general oobe. So this third time I am trying not installing any updates and not installing anything to do with Windows Live to see if it was the updates causing the issue. It should also be noted that I can not shutdown with Sysprep unless I end the windows live media networking process in CMD, else I get Sysprep has encountered a critical error message.

    Can you confirm that they did fix this problem with SP1 cause it would seem they didn't. Thanks

    Ok well results are in and same old same old can not complete yadida, even when i did not install  a single update. I can only conclude that it is one of my programs causing this issue. Does anyone know of a program that could be causing it. I did a clean install again and did nothing just rebooted into oobe and it worked. As soon as I install my programs it doesnt. Perhaps my Avast! antivirus, or Malware Bytes is causing this issue? Could it also be just a stoke of bad luck that the particular hardware setup I have is making thing dificult?

     

    Saturday, July 16, 2011 8:45 AM
  • The underlying root issue why WLE broke the sysprep phase (and many other programs did too) was fixed with SP1 and the KB981542.

     

    Thankfully you're rather specific with additional information, and I'm 95% sure that in this particular case for you the problem is your antivirus scanner Avast! Antivirus. Alot of AntiVirus scanners have problems to survive a generalized sysprep. It's best to create an automated method to install this upon first boot instead.

     

    Kind regards,

    Stephan Schwarz.


    If one of these posts answered your question or issue, please click on "Mark as answer".

    My Blog | Twitter: @Schwarz_Stephan | MCTS, MCITP, MCC.
    Sunday, July 17, 2011 11:38 AM
  • I appreciate your quick response. I have been running several tests and It would appear (obviously should have thought of earlier) that the culprit program was Daemon Tools Lite. Avast! seems to be doing fine, the only program which didn't survive, interestingly enough was google chrome. It was completely destroyed during sysprep.... anyway. You suggest automated installations, is there anywhere I might be able to find more information on this. I have been researching, and come across a few programs that automate mouse clicks at certain points of the screen etc, and I also tried to create unattend .iss for installers such as VLC and 7zip (using the /r parameter) but seemed unsuccessful. I use a nifty little app called ninite to install most of my programs but It would be cool if I could successfully create some unattend files, any suggestions?

    Thanks Heaps, 

    Alex Harper

    Tuesday, July 19, 2011 5:33 AM