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Deploying Windows 7 using MDT + Image management RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hello,

    These last few days I have been researching MDT for deploying Windows 7 to our 3000+ workstations. The setup and configuration is quite easy and I managed to quickly make an unattended install to let me deploy Windows 7. However, about one part I couldn't find any information or solution. That is, how can I manage my deployment over all my workstations? How do I keep track of what I have deployed and where can I redeploy a system?

    Let me explain that in detail

    1) When a system has to be deployed you can press F12 on boot to start the boot image. After that you are able to deploy the image etc. But, my workstations are spread throughout the country and I do not want to drive and press F12 on all systems. There is an option that automatically lets me boot to the boot image, but I suppose my system would be redeployed after every boot....

    2) How do I keep track of my deployment? I don't see any console with a list of deployed systems, or if the deployment has been succesfull or had errors. I know there is a popup after the deployement has finished on the machine itself, but as I'm on the other side of the country I won't be able to see that.

    3) Lets assume I have deployed all my computers with my new image. Then of course a user comes and messes up a system's configuration and I have to redeploy it. How can I remotely redeploy just that machine without asking the user to press F12?

    In the past I often used Altiris Deployment. There I had a management console with a list of all my clients. On boot they would check if any deployment job was waiting, and if so executed that job, else they'd boot to HD. Did I miss something while implementing MDT? I would love to see a function where I can just click on a computer in Active Directory and choose for "Redeploy system on next boot"

    Tuesday, December 21, 2010 2:36 PM

Answers

  • MDT might not be for you if you have that many systems.  You should probably be coupling it with WDS and using PXE boot, or using a more advanced service such as your previous Altiris Deployment, or MS's solutions like SCOM or SCCM.

    Even if you did the PXE boot though, you'd still need to hit F12 to select PXE boot if the machine wasn't configured to boot from the network before other devices by default.  All in all though, I don't know of a way that you could make it completely autonomous for your users without actually getting the machines setup like that in the first place.

    Since you say "F12", I presume that you have Dell machines.  This may not be helpful to you for your current situation, but Dell does offer a service called, "ImageDirect" that will allow you to preconfigure images for your organization and have Dell ship the machines directly to your users locations with your image already installed.  The images can be changed and managed from anywhere and updated at any time.

    Again, that doesn't help for machines that are already deployed, but it's something to think about for the future.

    • Edited by scythe944 Tuesday, December 21, 2010 3:24 PM Added more info.
    • Marked as answer by Leo Huang Monday, December 27, 2010 1:08 AM
    • Unmarked as answer by Martijn1985 Friday, December 31, 2010 7:14 AM
    • Marked as answer by Martijn1985 Friday, December 31, 2010 7:14 AM
    Tuesday, December 21, 2010 3:19 PM

All replies

  • MDT might not be for you if you have that many systems.  You should probably be coupling it with WDS and using PXE boot, or using a more advanced service such as your previous Altiris Deployment, or MS's solutions like SCOM or SCCM.

    Even if you did the PXE boot though, you'd still need to hit F12 to select PXE boot if the machine wasn't configured to boot from the network before other devices by default.  All in all though, I don't know of a way that you could make it completely autonomous for your users without actually getting the machines setup like that in the first place.

    Since you say "F12", I presume that you have Dell machines.  This may not be helpful to you for your current situation, but Dell does offer a service called, "ImageDirect" that will allow you to preconfigure images for your organization and have Dell ship the machines directly to your users locations with your image already installed.  The images can be changed and managed from anywhere and updated at any time.

    Again, that doesn't help for machines that are already deployed, but it's something to think about for the future.

    • Edited by scythe944 Tuesday, December 21, 2010 3:24 PM Added more info.
    • Marked as answer by Leo Huang Monday, December 27, 2010 1:08 AM
    • Unmarked as answer by Martijn1985 Friday, December 31, 2010 7:14 AM
    • Marked as answer by Martijn1985 Friday, December 31, 2010 7:14 AM
    Tuesday, December 21, 2010 3:19 PM
  • In addition to Scythe944, you can integrate MDT2010 with System Center Configuration Manager 2007 R2.
    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, December 21, 2010 4:37 PM