Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010 Beta 1: Using MDT to Prepare, Install and Capture customized Windows 7 Images – Part I
IMPORTANT: Updated versions from this series using Windows 7 + Microsoft Office 2010 in automated deployment with MDT 2010 can be found here:
Microsoft Deployment Toolkit team released the first beta of their next version: Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010 Beta 1 (you can access to the Beta program from Microsoft Connect and download the build). This new version includes several improvements, but perhaps the most important ones are related to Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 compatibility.
Some of the New Features
- Support for deploying: Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2
- Hard Link Migrations using USMT 4 (User Migration Toolkit).
- Integration with new Windows Automated Installation Kit (WAIK) 2.0 toolset such as BCDBOOT and Windows PE 3.0.
- DISM tool (Dism.exe) included with WAIK 2.0 replace three other tools on previous version: Pkgmgr.exe (Package Manager), Intlcfg.exe (Internal Settings Configuration Tool) and PEimg.exe (WindowsPE Command Line tool ).
If you are planning to implement Windows 7 on your environment (check this link about the review I made about Windows 7 functionality) or you want to start to get to know Microsoft Deployment Toolkit in this new version; I’ve prepared this step-by-step guides that will cover almost everything you need to know about MDT 2010 and automated Windows 7 deployment, with personalized images.
These posts will cover the Lite Touch Installation (LTI) type of deployment of Windows 7 (Zero Touch Installation with System Center Configuration Manager 2007 it’s not currently supported with these Beta versions).
What we are going to achieve? Add Windows 7 to MDT, include applications (Office 2007) to be deployed within the operating system to generate a reference image. And finally we’ll capture this reference image (in a single .wim file) and make it available for a massive deployment with MDT 2010 Beta 1.
Note: LTI deployment does not require Windows Deployment Services (WDS) to be fully operational to actually work, but we are going to take this as a requirement to implement WDS for PXE boot for only WindowsPE images.
- Active Directory and DNS
- DHCP properly configured for WDS.
- Windows Deployment Services (WDS) configured.
- Windows 7 source files.
Note: This previous post of mine shows how WDS must be configured to work together with DHCP.
- Windows Server 2003 SP2, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2 Beta
- Windows Automated Installation 2.0 (WAIK).
You can download WAIK 2.0 from this link (English).
You won’t have any problem installing MDT 2010 Beta 1. There’s only a simple wizard to complete.
To verify that the installation completed successfully and all the necessary components are installed: Open “Deployment Workbench” snap-in from Start Menu, and check “Information Center” > “Components” > “Installed”.
MDT 2010 First Configurations
These initial configurations don’t differ from MDT 2008:
- Create the distribution share.
- Add operating system files to the distribution share.
- Create a task sequence for the reference computer.
- Create a deployment point.
Create the Distribution Share
This is the folder where the MDT files (OS, applications, drivers, etc) will be kept.
1. Open “Deployment Workbench”. Right click on “Distribution Share” > “Create a Distribution Share Directory”.
2. Select a folder. Click on “Finish”. Recommendation: Use a separate partition like “E:\Distribution”.
Add Windows 7 Operating System
Here we are going to add the OS to be deployed and create the reference image.
1. On “Deployment Workbench” > “Distribution Share”, right-click on “Operating Systems” > “New”.
2. Choose the type of OS to add. Select “Full set of source files” and click on “Next”.
3. Select the Source Directory. In my case, I have the Windows 7 x64 files copied in the hard drive, so I also mark the option “Move the files to the distribution share instead of copying them”. Click on “Next”.
4. Select a directory name. And click on “Finish”.
Now all the files will be moved to the Distribution Share folder and should appear as available after it completes.
Create the Task Sequence
This is where we define the steps involved in the installation process for the target computer.
1. “Deployment Workbench” > “Distribution Share” > “Tasks Sequences” > “New”.
2. Enter a “Task Sequence ID”: “Win7”; and a “Task Sequence Name”: “Deploy Windows 7”.
3. Select “Standard Client Task Sequence”.
4. Select the version of the OS to be deployed, in this case “Windows 7 ULTIMATE”.
5. Enter the OS settings. “Full Name”, “Organization” and “Internet Explorer Home Page”.
6. Specify Administrator’s password. And click on “Finish”.
Create a Deployment Point
Here we’ll define the rules and parameters involved in the deployment.
1. “Deployment Workbench” > “Deploy” > “Deployment Points” > “New”.
2. Since we are going to use the distribution share on this computer, select “Lab or single-server deployment”.
3. Select a deployment point name “LAB”.
4. Leave deselected the options for this upgrade scenarios.
5. Select “Ask if an image should be captured”.
6. Leave deselected the option “Ask user to set the local Administrator Password” (already included on the task sequence).
7. Leave deselected the option “Ask user for a product key”.
8. On the next step, the Distribution (“Distribution$”) folder should be selected as the Share. Click on “Next”.
9. Select “Automatically determine the location on the network”. And click on “Finish”.
Now the deployment point is created, we now have to generate the boot media from the deployment point; this media will be used to create the reference computer.
10. “Deployment Workbench” > “Deploy” > “Deployment Points” > “LAB” > “Properties”.
11. Check on the “General Tab” the “x64” option for “Platforms Supported”. Also you can verify on “WindowsPE” tab other options like drivers or background image.
12. Now to generate the boot files:“Deployment Workbench” > “Deploy” > “Deployment Points” > “LAB” > “Update”.
This last step could take several minutes to complete, so be patient. It takes a while generate from scratch the ISO and WIM files used to boot environments. After it completes, you can find LiteTouchPE files inside “%distribution%\Boot\”
Notice that I haven’t used the option “Out-of-Box Drivers”. Windows 7 contains almost every hardware driver available on the market, you won’t get much problem with this. But MDT has a simple and effective way to handle device drivers, using “Groups” where you can add specific files depending on your need. For example: You could have a group of drivers with all the files for specific model of notebooks devices, other for desktop.
We’ll be reviewing how to handle applications, most specific Office 2007, within an MDT deployment on the next posts.