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Network boot EFI client using WDS on Windows Server 2008 R2

    Question

  • Hi,

    I just installed WDS on Windows server 2008 R2. I have the DHCP server and WDS on the same system. I have configured WDS and added the x64 boot and install images. I am trying to network boot an x64 efi based client. The client successfully obtains a DHCP address. Now, in the network trace, I observe that the first file to be downloaded is always the wdsmgfw.efi file.

    1. Initially, I added the Windows 2008 SP2 boot image. The boot\x64\ folder did not have the wdsmgfw.efi file and TFTP request would fail.

    2. I added the Windows 2008 R2 boot image. This created the wdsmgfw.efi file in the boot\x64\ folder. Now the TFTP download succeeds. Then I end up with a black screen.

    I made the"bootmgfw.efi" the default boot program for x64 systems. Even then, the TFTP request is always for "wdsmgfw.efi". What is the wdsmgfw.efi file for? Is this being requested by the client? I got a feeling that if the bootmgfw.efi file is downloaded, I will be able to install and boot properly.

    Do I need to set any option? Any help will be appreciated.

    Thanks!

    Saturday, April 21, 2012 4:50 AM

Answers

  • Hi buddies,

    We all noticed that the KB article 2022662, it's a known issue for Windows Server 2008 R2. Towards the UEFI PXE boot, Microsoft have tried to add this funtion in Windows Server "8" for Windows Deployment Services role. Not only the UEFI architecture but also the arm architecture will be supported.

    There is figure for your reference:

    If there is no workaround or fix pack for UEFI PXE boot, I think the requirement will be fulfilled in the next generation product.

    I think Windows Server "8" is really cool~, right?

    Regards,

    James


    James Xiong

    TechNet Community Support

    Tuesday, May 22, 2012 8:11 AM

All replies

  • Hi,

    Wdsmgfw.efi file is a special NBP developed for use by Windows Deployment Services that serves the following purposes:

    1.  Handles prompting the user to press a key to continue PXE boot;
    2.  Pending devices scenarios;
    3.  Network boot referral cases (including use of DHCP options 66 and 67);

    I think the following KB article might help you towards your concern:

    Title: Black screen or trap error when booting EFI PXE client to Windows Server 2008 R2 WDS Server
    URL: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2012858

    Regards,
    James


    James Xiong

    TechNet Community Support

    Monday, April 23, 2012 8:57 AM
  • Hi James,

    Thanks for the response. I have already gone through that article. I changed the default boot program to 'bootmgfw.efi'. I also set the boot option to not require F12 key press and continue to PXE boot.

    wdsutil /set-server /bootprogram:boot\x64\bootmgfw.efi /architecture:x64

    wdsutil /set-server /n12bootprogram:boot\x64\bootmgfw.efi /architecture:x64

    When i checked the configurations, the boot program was set to bootmgfw.efi. However, I still see 'wdsmgfw.efi' being requested rather than 'bootmgfw.efi'. Do you know why this may be happening?

    I also found this article which describes a scenario  very identical to mine. The resolution says' known issue'. Is it not possible to network boot x64 and IA64 based EFI clients using WDS server 2008 R2?

    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2022662

    Thanks!

    Tuesday, April 24, 2012 8:39 AM
  • pearl06,

    I am very interested to see what you turn up. I've had a similar situation come accross my bench today. Unfortunately, the configuration of WDS was already in line with the instructions of KB2012858.

    I also found KB2022662 and had the genious idea to madly push the F12 and Enter keys during the PXE process, but that did not work.

    I'm going to keep digging, but if you - or anyone else for that matter! - happens to dig something up, please post it!

    Thanks,

    Revotan

    Thursday, May 10, 2012 11:18 PM
  • Hi James and Perl06,

    I'm also interested in this topic.

    Regarding to KB2022662, if this is a known issue.
    Will Microsoft provide a fix pack or workaround??

    If not... it seem that it's impossible for UEFI PXE Boot !?

    Tuesday, May 22, 2012 6:20 AM
  • Hi buddies,

    We all noticed that the KB article 2022662, it's a known issue for Windows Server 2008 R2. Towards the UEFI PXE boot, Microsoft have tried to add this funtion in Windows Server "8" for Windows Deployment Services role. Not only the UEFI architecture but also the arm architecture will be supported.

    There is figure for your reference:

    If there is no workaround or fix pack for UEFI PXE boot, I think the requirement will be fulfilled in the next generation product.

    I think Windows Server "8" is really cool~, right?

    Regards,

    James


    James Xiong

    TechNet Community Support

    Tuesday, May 22, 2012 8:11 AM
  • Hi pearl06

    I know this is quite old, but I think I've found a hack for it tonight.

    Using the wdsutil commands you mentioned still doesn't set the boot manager firmware to bootmgfw.efi. Rather, the WDS manager firmware wdsmgfw.efi continues to be loaded.

    I've since renamed the original wdsmgfw.efi to something else, and made a copy of bootmgfw.efi and renamed that copy to wdsmgfw.efi. PXE UEFI mode boot now works spectacularly as expected. The screen resolution is properly detected once I boot into WinPE (5.0 in my instance).

    My question to MS: why the world doesn't wdsmgfw.efi work properly? I've had this problem for almost 1.5 years now since I upgraded to Windows Server 2012 (didn't seem to be an issue on WS2008R2 where the laptop with UEFI booted perfectly over PXE with secure boot set to ON!)


    • Proposed as answer by hubertlam Wednesday, April 09, 2014 12:16 PM
    Wednesday, April 09, 2014 12:16 PM