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 Customizing WDS Deployments Minimize
Location: BlogsJohan Arwidmark    
Posted by: johan 2/12/2009

Have you ever needed to run something before the WDS client start the Windows Setup... Like a diskpart script to get rid of som pesky utility partitions... then read on..

The first obvious solution is of course to use WDS and MDT 2008 together, and have the MDT Task Sequence handle the partitioning etc...

But what if you (for some odd reason) want to use WDS, and only WDS...  Well you can simply add a RunSynchronous command to your WDS Client Unattend.xml file.

Here is a sample:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<unattend xmlns="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:unattend">
    <settings pass="windowsPE">
        <component name="Microsoft-Windows-Setup" processorArchitecture="x86" publicKeyToken="31bf3856ad364e35" language="neutral" versionScope="nonSxS" xmlns:wcm="http://schemas.microsoft.com/WMIConfig/2002/State">
            <RunSynchronous>
                <RunSynchronousCommand wcm:action="add">
                    <Description>Run my Pre-Setup Script</Description>
                    <Order>1</Order>
                    <Path>cscript.exe x:\deploy\myhappyscript.vbs</Path>
                </RunSynchronousCommand>
            </RunSynchronous>
            <DiskConfiguration>
                <WillShowUI>OnError</WillShowUI>
                <Disk wcm:action="add">
                    <CreatePartitions>
                        <CreatePartition wcm:action="add">
                            <Order>1</Order>
                            <Type>Primary</Type>
                            <Extend>false</Extend>
                            <Size>15000</Size>
                        </CreatePartition>
                    </CreatePartitions>
                    <ModifyPartitions>
                        <ModifyPartition wcm:action="add">
                            <Active>true</Active>
                            <Extend>true</Extend>
                            <Format>NTFS</Format>
                            <Label>OSDisk</Label>
                            <Letter>C</Letter>
                            <Order>1</Order>
                            <PartitionID>1</PartitionID>
                        </ModifyPartition>
                    </ModifyPartitions>
                    <DiskID>0</DiskID>
                    <WillWipeDisk>false</WillWipeDisk>
                </Disk>
            </DiskConfiguration>
            <WindowsDeploymentServices>
                <Login>
                    <Credentials>
                        <Domain>TSLAB</Domain>
                        <Password>P@ssw0rd</Password>
                        <Username>BuildAccount</Username>
                    </Credentials>
                </Login>
                <ImageSelection>
                    <InstallImage>
                        <Filename>Install.wim</Filename>
                        <ImageGroup>TSLAB</ImageGroup>
                        <ImageName>Windows Vista Enterprise</ImageName>
                    </InstallImage>
                    <InstallTo>
                        <DiskID>0</DiskID>
                        <PartitionID>1</PartitionID>
                    </InstallTo>
                </ImageSelection>
            </WindowsDeploymentServices>
        </component>
        <component name="Microsoft-Windows-International-Core-WinPE" processorArchitecture="x86" publicKeyToken="31bf3856ad364e35" language="neutral" versionScope="nonSxS" xmlns:wcm="http://schemas.microsoft.com/WMIConfig/2002/State" xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance">
            <SetupUILanguage>
                <UILanguage>en-US</UILanguage>
            </SetupUILanguage>
            <InputLocale></InputLocale>
            <SystemLocale></SystemLocale>
            <UILanguage>en-US</UILanguage>
            <UserLocale></UserLocale>
        </component>
    </settings>
    <cpi:offlineImage cpi:source="wim://srv001/distribution$/operating%20systems/windows%20vista%20enterprise%20x86/sources/install.wim#Windows Vista ENTERPRISE" xmlns:cpi="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:cpi" />
</unattend>

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Comments (8)  
Re: Customizing WDS Deployments    By joedai on 2/24/2009
Johan, I'm trying to setup a sysprep.xml for deploying vista. It really is different from xp's sysprep and I'm not quite understanding it all. I'd like a sysprep file so I can create a wim image to be deployed. Other websites talk about using windows PE via cd or usb but I can boot directly to the network. why would I need to do it the other way. We have a key server so a product key is not necessary. I'm not sure how to create, or what is needed, in the sysprep.xml if i create it thru WSIM..

Re: Customizing WDS Deployments    By Benjamin on 3/12/2009
Johan:
Thanks for this blog because it brings up an interesting point -- and question. I personally use MDT with LTI to install my first installation of Vista and then use it to capture to a WIM. Then I use WDS to deploy the WIM. Why do I use WDS to deploy the WIM instead of using MDT? Simply because I cannot figure out how to make LTI in MDT to use the WDS naming policy. Instead, the LTI method always names the computer either the username with some random characters or MINIT with some random characters (based on the settings that I put in the unattend.xml file). Does anyone know of a way to make LTI use the name that WDS has already assigned to the computer in Active Directory? Then I would be able to take advantage of the many benefits that MDT with LTI has to offer (easy driver updates, offline patches, etc). Thanks.

Re: Customizing WDS Deployments    By jrw27 on 3/12/2009
I have the same question as Benjamin 3/12/2009. Will populating the MDT database with the UUIDs and computer names take care of this issue for a complete use of MDT and proper computer naming? Is it essentially equivalent of pre-staging in AD.

Thanks.

Re: Customizing WDS Deployments    By Benjamin on 3/12/2009
jrw27:

I've read where alot of people are having the same question. I particularly would like to use the same names that are currently in my AD structure. That way I won't have to maintain 2 copies of the same information -- once in AD and once in a database. In the meantime, I am just using a captured WIM of Vista and deploying it straight through WDS. But it sure would be nice if I can take advantage of the features of LTI/MDT for more than just my initial capture!

Re: Customizing WDS Deployments    By Benjamin on 3/12/2009
Johan -- do you know of any resources that could help us? I've tried using the contents of my WDSClientUnattend.xml and the unattend.xml that I use to do a hand's off WDS of my Vista image. And the tricks that work there (not including the computername selection in xml) don't work. So I have tried just about everything -- using %machinename%, changing the variable of osdcomputername, blanking it out, putting an asterisk -- you name it. I've look at the WDS API -- still can't find where the WDS client gets the name from WDS. I've just about given up on looking -- but keeping hoping someone has a way.

Re: Customizing WDS Deployments    By Benjamin on 3/13/2009
I've posted this question over at the Microsoft Technet Forums under:
http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/itprovistadeployment/thread/c04460c8-4476-4d57-bf1b-89dffbf256f3

Re: Customizing WDS Deployments    By mla on 6/23/2009
Johan,
I setup WDS on 2003 and use it for XP deployment.
No problem with deploying one image using XML and sysprep.ini on WDS.
Cannot find a way for setting up second image and have a choice when F12 on client.
I captured second image and placed it in the same Image Group where first one resides.
What's next?
How to adjust XML and where to place second sysprep.ini ?

Here is part of my XML. I added the name of second image placed second sysprep in path below but it doesn't work.
Where is the problem?

-
-
-
abc
user_name
xxxxxxx


-
OnError
-
june3
xp-images
xp-5800-(1).wim

general_5800
xp-images
general_5800.wim
-
0
1




***********************************
here is the path to sysprep:

For first:

D:\RemoteInstall\Images\xp-images\xp-5800-(1)\$OEM$\$1\sysprep


For second (was my logic :). But by adding second and changing XML for second image doesn't work.

D:\RemoteInstall\Images\xp-images\general_5800\$OEM$\$1\sysprep

Please help. Thanks.

Michael.

Re: Customizing WDS Deployments    By mla on 6/23/2009
I try to paste XML part that didn't posted completely.
Should be Ok (I paste from text file now).

-
-
-
abc
user_name
xxxxxxx


-
OnError

-
june3
xp-images
xp-5800-(1).wim


general_5800
xp-images
general_5800.wim

-
0
1






  
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