Problem with NIC drivers in WinPE - MDT 2012 RRS feed

  • Question

  • I am having trouble getting a couple of Lenovo ThinkPad models to recognize the NIC drivers when booting into WinPE (v3.1, x86).  Our images are Win7 64-bit, but we are using WinPE 3.1, x86 (because of Dell’s BIOS update utility, I was told).

    I was initially given 14 Lenovo models to image and everything went fine with that first batch.  Then 12 of those were replaced with new models and it’s not going nearly as smooth for the second set.

    I inherited this deployment share from the former engineer and was given minimal training on how to support it.  I am using a stand-alone MDT 2012 deployment share to deploy images via USB key.

    There are two things that I need explained if you can help and let me say that I appreciate any replies in advance.

    First, why would you want the selection profile for your WinPE media set to “Nothing” (with only network and storage drivers selected)?  This is how the deployment media was setup when I inherited it and as I mentioned it worked flawlessly for the first batch of Lenovo’s.  So if the driver injection selection profile for WinPE is set to “Nothing”, how was it able to get WinPE to load the necessary NIC drivers for the initial Lenovo models….where did it find the drivers if there are none in the selection profile?

    Then how does updating the main Deployment Share differ from updating the Media folder and when is it necessary to update one or the other or both?  We are currently both a Dell and Lenovo shop (trying to get away from Dell) and I am working from an existing Task Sequence on the main deployment share and it has its own WinPE driver injection settings under the share’s properties….here the driver selection profile was also set to “Nothing” with include only drivers of the following types selected: network and storage.

    But I also have a Media folder that was created just for the Lenovo images and it has its own WinPE driver injection settings under properties.  It too was set to Nothing and after my first round of testing failed to recognize the NIC drivers in WinPE, I started trying some of the other selection profiles that were already present, one being named “WinPE x86 drivers”.  So I included all of the WinPE 3.1 32-bit drivers that I had already imported into the Out-of-Box drives folder and tested, but it still does not see the NIC when booted into WinPE.

    I’m confused as to why it worked the first time with “Nothing” set as the WinPE driver selection profile but not with the second set of Lenovo’s and why if I change the selection profile to use the WinPE 3.1 drivers that I imported specifically for the “WinPE x86” selection profile it still does not recognize the NIC drivers.

    Any suggestion are welcome because I’m scratching my head and starting to get nervous as second quarter PC orders are just around the corner and I can’t get any of the new models to see the network.

    Monday, March 21, 2016 10:47 PM

All replies

  • So here are the basics:

    Driver management:

    Logs are very important. Mention any customizations you have made.

    Monday, March 21, 2016 11:02 PM
  • Thanks for the links, but I have come across these multiple times in my searches.

    Despite spending a couple of days trying to get the wrong nic driver that I was provided by Lenovo to install, I was able to locate the correct driver on a different forum and successfully install it into the boot wim using the drvload command.

    Now the problem is that I cannot get MDT to inject it into the boot wim when I update the folder for the offline media.  So I updated the entire deployment share and was able to see in the log file that the correct driver version showed that to be successfully injected, then I use DISM to mount image to verify that the driver is present.  I can see 2 other drivers with the same name, but different versions, but the version that I need ( is nowhere to be found.  So I don’t know why the log would show that it was injected, but not be present when I mount the boot wim with DISM to list the drivers.

    Has anyone else run into this?

    Friday, March 25, 2016 3:52 PM
  • Use the total control method linked above. PNP detection doesn't know about child devices.

    Logs are very important. Mention any customizations you have made.

    Friday, March 25, 2016 4:30 PM
  • I inherited this deployment share and the former tech used somewhat of a total control approach.  It's not as clean as I would have created it if I could start from scratch, but it's definitely not total chaos.  Instead of using a driver group as described in the article, we use a WMI query statement to specify the model...for the OS drivers (not WinPE).

    But I'm trying to get a WinPE driver onto the boot wim so that I can see the network thereby allowing me to connect to the deployment share, so I'm not sure how to address that in a TS.  Shouldn't it be as simple as including the driver in the WinPE x86 selection profile then specifying which selection profile to use for WinPE in the deployment share's properties?

    (I would post a link to an image showing my deployment share, but the forum will not allow it until my account has been verified and I just created a post to have it verified.)

    Thanks for the replies though.

    Friday, March 25, 2016 5:49 PM
  • Hey Liam, you don't have to start from scratch but if you've inherited a deployment share and it isn't fully documented, building a new one is pretty easy and a good way to get more familiar with MDT. Anyway you can keep your current deployment share and switch to the Total Control method posted on Johan's site. If you follow it exactly your PE driver problem should go away. Just remember that when you add drivers to the WinPE folder you will have to generate a new boot image.

    You can also combine the Total Control method with a Make/Model alias script (totally optional) if it makes working with some models easier.

    Using the total control method will lead to faster deployments (no time wasted injecting unnecessary drivers) and a low to 0% chance the wrong driver versions are used. The wrong drivers would only happen if you import the wrong drivers or don't remove old ones before importing updated drivers.

    As for your WinPE question, Yes you create a selection profile and add only the WinPE driver folder.

    Then when you select the selection profile to use for PE you tell it to include all drivers from the selection profile.

    If this post is helpful please vote it as Helpful or click Mark for answer.

    Friday, March 25, 2016 6:34 PM