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Creating a basic image disk for 2k


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I have a number of various spec'd machines and i visit many sites all under the same company. I have made a custom set of cd's for the company, but this still takes 3 disks for all the software and programs with licences.. but then i still need to find the driver disk.

I dont know enough about Ghost, but from previous use i can copy a workstation and just change the name, and rejoin it to the network with all programs ok.

What i need to know is: Can i create a win 2k with only the bare essentials and the software with all licences installed - but NO machine drivers other than the generic ones - then create an image file which i then can use to build a workstation and then just install the hardware drivers?

;) Many thanks in advance :thumbup

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As long as you have enough drivers to boot the target computer you should be fine. Just add the BuildMassStorage section and add enough mass storage drivers if need be (use Bâshrat the Sneaky's MassStorage DriverPack) to your sysprep.inf . If space is an issue, you should still add some drivers to OemPnPDrivers, but leave the least used out.

You might also want to simply expand to 4 CDs. A bare bones method still means that you have to add all the driver disks later on. CDs are fairly cheap and if your sites are well connected, you could just set up a dumb box with a big pipe and host your image there.

Hope this helps.

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To making certain your image does not blue screen when deployed to a new PC:

  • ensure all the computers are ACPI compliant machines and use the same Configuration Power Interface-compliant (ACPI-compliant) hardware abstraction layer (HAL).
    If you are running Windows 2K, the first step is to determine if you have an ACPI compliant system. From the Device Manager, in the hardware list, click on Computer and if "ACPI" is listed then your computer is running in ACPI mode.
  • change the Mass Storage Controller Driver
    From the Device Manager, open up the "IDE ATA/ATAPI Controllers" section. (On a typical system there will be three entries under this - the controller itself, and then the primary/secondary IDE channels.)
    Double-click on the entry for the controller, and change the driver to the generic default Microsoft "Standard Dual-Channel PCI IDE Controller". Set DMA to "PIO Only". (Double click on the IDE controller icon in the Device Manager. Click on the "Driver" tab. Click on "Update Driver". Click next. Click "display list of the known drivers for this device so that I choose a specific driver" button. Click next. There it is.)
    This avoids the INACCESSIBLE_BOOT_DEVICE BSOD. Don't works for the PCs with SATA or SCSI hard disk controllers.
  • Use the SysPrep tool and imaging software (DriveImage or Ghost) to deploy machines with a standard image to move a Windows 2000 installation to new hardware (even to motherboards having a different IDE hard disk controller).

Fixing ACPI Problems in Windows 2000

Understanding how Windows 2000 handles power management can boggle the mind. The Advance Configuration Power Interface (ACPI) Hardware Abstraction Layer (HAL) is automatically installed if Windows 2000 detects ACPI features in the BIOS during Setup. Often times, if the PC isn't 100% ACPI compliant, you'll see very odd behavior such as improper shutdowns, DRIVER_POWER_STATE STOP errors, or other odd behavior from the system. If you can flash the BIOS with a compliant version, that should help.

The objective is to get a bootable system by installing basic Microsoft default drivers which are compatible with most hardware. After the system is running, new hardware can be detected, and specific optimized drivers can then be loaded

Well written tutorial here from: "Bill Geschwind"

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Rather than using a ghost image which has it own problems,

Duplicate GUID's

Dupicate PID's

You can't change hardware

You need a site licence or licence pre PC

You need to install all the latest hotfixes from the time you did the Ghost image.

Have you thought about doing an unattended Image? It sorted all of these problems out PLUS you can automatically install apps and incorporate all the latest hardware drivers for all PC's in an image, and on install the PC picks up the correct drivers for the hardware.

if you are interest try here to start with....


This can also be install over a network (for local PC's) via a RIS server (free component of W2KS and W2K3S)

An unattened image takes a little longer than a ghost image to install (5-10 mins) but there is no finding the correct drivers, doing a new image when standard software is upgaded etc etc etc

I hope this is usefull, it has saved me loads of time. :thumbup

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i visit many sites all under the same company.


do you always take your server with you when you go to another site not connected to the main site where the server resides ?

RIS and Imaging are two differents answers to specific problems.

another solution i use is to:

install a base PC from my RIS Server with all HF, updates and sofware integrated, add the most used PnP drivers (Display, Media, Net, Chipset) to the %systemdrive%, set the path in registry, sysprep the install and then imaging the Drive.

As you mention, then restoring a ghost image is very fast.

In a corporate environment, IT Pro uses site licence and most branded computers have standard components (Intel Chipset + Intel Display + SoundMax Media + Intel or Broadcom Net). Easy to create and update a driver package which fits all the HW.

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HI Bilou_Gateux,

What I was trying to say was, you can use a RIS server for all the PC at your main office and an unattended image (not a ghosted image) for all other offices that do not have a server.

A ghost image is just a hard disk copy, sector for sector, while an unattened image is an unattended windows setup which is exactly like a RIS image(jst run from a CDor DVD).

This way you still only have to manage one image then copy to the server and burn on to cd. :w00t:


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Let's MadGutts choose the best solution for him.

Although imaging isn't my preferred solution, i would like to help him as i have already encountered some similar problems.


My own solution is to move my Magnia Z310 with me as it's a small form factor server used only for UA. :thumbup

CD install is too slow for me and i use it only if i have'nt any other solution.

Forget to mention my notebook don't have any CD drive.

But Wired NIC is PXE compliant. RIS is just the perfect solution to reinstall the OS.

I've voted :yes: for RIS thread. Hope moderator will find it's a good idea as more and more members post requests about RIS.

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You might also want to simply expand to 4 CDs. A bare bones method still means that you have to add all the driver disks later on. CDs are fairly cheap and if your sites are well connected, you could just set up a dumb box with a big pipe and host your image there.

The whole point of this exersie, is that i have 5 different sites, whom all bought there own hardware from either Dell, Siemens, and laptops from toshiba, dell, HP and Acer.

So what i need is to build a pc with no specific hardware drivers for each pc, but enough to start the pc into 2k and run the CD drive to load the correct hardware drivers. Each site keeps there hardware driver cd's so i dont need to carry them.

My aim is to carry a Bootable CD/DVD with an image containing:

Win2k, Office2k, MSN Messenger, and other programs we use, and the various printer drivers. At the moment i need to carry win2k vlk, office 2k pro, the cd with our software on it, and then i need to find the driver disks on site for each pc.

Then when i get either a new pc, or have to rebuild an existing one, all i need to do is run the disc and install the system to a bootable basic state, then install the hardware drivers for the pc, and configure its network details. The login scripts will do the rest, but the pc will be useable with only 2 discs !

Using SYSPREP defeats the point of the disc. I need the VLK's intact. All the PC's support ACPI, they all are simular spec. Its just the mainboard and graphics cards that vary. We use a few different style of printers, but i dont mind installing them on-site.

RIS could work, but i dont know much about it. I have Ghost installed on the server and this works well across the main network, but down an isdn line it is too slow.

Thanks for the help ppl! :thumbup

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