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 Archived Article - Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS Minimize
Location: BlogsJohan Arwidmark    
Posted by: johan 4/6/2010

 

 

Note: This is an archived Article, the latest version is available at:

http://deploymentresearch.com/Blog/tabid/62/EntryId/2/Demo-from-MMS-2011-Using-WDS-without-Active-Directory-Configuring-a-standalone-WDS.aspx

/ Johan

 

In Windows Server 2008 R2, Microsoft added support for using the PXE listener without Active Directory. Here is a complete guide on how to configure a standalone Windows Server 2008 R2 WDS Server

Pre-Requisites

In these steps I assume you have a server the following configuration

  1. A Windows Server 2008 R2 named WDS01, installed into a workgroup. 
     
  2. One network card with a fixed IPv4 address (I’m using 192.168.2.215 in my lab) 
     
  3. Two partitions, C: for the Windows Server 2008 R2 operating System, D: for Data

I also assume you have a DNS Server somewhere in the environment, maybe your local router if it’s a smaller network. In my lab my DNS server / Router has IP address 192.168.2.1. The router has DHCP server disabled.

High level steps:

  1. Download and install Windows AIK 2.0 
     
  2. Install DHCP and create a scope for the network 
     
  3. Add the WDS transport role service 
     
  4. Create and share the RemoteInstall folder structure 
     
  5. Copy the x86 and x64 boot files 
     
  6. Copy the x86 and x64 boot images 
     
  7. Configure the WDS Providers 
     
  8. Configure the Policies 
     
  9. Additional DHCP and WDS provider configuration

Download and install Windows AIK 2.0

  1. On WDS01, logon as Administrator
     
  2. Download and Install Windows AIK 2.0 (named Windows AIK for Windows 7 on Microsoft downloads) with the default settings.

Install DHCP and create a scope for the network

  1. On WDS01, using Server Manager, select Roles, and the select Add Roles
     
  2. On the Before You Begin page, select the Skip this page by default checkbox, and click Next
     
  3. In the Select Server Roles list, select DHCP Server and click Next
     
  4. On the DCHP Server page, click Next
     
  5. On the Select Network Connection Bindings page, accept the default settings and click Next
     
  6. On the Specify IPv4 DNS Server Settings page, in the parent domain: textbox, type in whatever DNS Suffix you want to use, I used tslab.net, and click Next
     
  7. On the Specify IPv4 WINS Server Settings page, accept the default settings and click Next
     
  8. On the Add or Edit DHCP Scopes page, click Add. Use the following settings.

    Scope Name: 192.168.2.0/24
     
    Starting IP address: 192.168.2.100
     
    Ending IP address: 192.168.2.199
     
    Subnet Type: Wired (lease duration will be 8 days)
     
    Activate this scope: Selected
     
    Subnet Mask: 255.255.255.0
     
    Default Gateway (optional): 192.168.2.1
     
    Click OK, and then click Next
     
  9. On the Configure DHCPv6 Stateless Mode page, accept the default settings and click Next
     
  10. On the Specify IPv6 DNS Server Settings page, in the parent domain: textbox, type in whatever DNS Suffix you want to use, I used tslab.net, and click Next
     
  11. On the Confirm Installation Selections page, click Install
     
  12. On the Installation Results page, click Close.

Add the WDS Transport server role

  1. On WDS01, using Server Manager, select Roles, and the select Add Roles
     
  2. In the Select Server Roles list, select Windows Deployment Services and click Next
     
  3. On the Overview of Windows Deployment Services page, click Next
     
  4. On the Select Role Services page, clear the Windows Deployment Service checkbox so that only Transport Server role service is selected, and click Next
     
  5. On the Confirm Installation Selections page, click Install
     
  6. On the Installation Results page, click Close.

Create and share the RemoteInstall folder structure

  1. On WDS01, using Explorer, create the following folder structure:
     
    D:\RemoteInstall
     
    D:\RemoteInstall\boot
     
    D:\RemoteInstall\boot\x86
     
    D:\RemoteInstall\boot\x86\images
     
    D:\RemoteInstall\boot\x64
     
    D:\RemoteInstall\boot\x64\images 
     
  2. Using Explorer, and the Advanced Sharing feature, share the D:\RemoteInstall folder as REMINST.

Copy the x86 and x64 boot files 

  1. On WDS01, using Explorer, create the D:\Mount folder. 
     
  2. Start a Deployment Tools Command Prompt (found on the start menu, in the All Programs / Microsoft Windows AIK folder), type the following command + press Enter.
     
    Imagex /mount x86\winpe.wim 1 D:\Mount 
     
  3. Leave the Deployment Tools Command Prompt open. 
     
  4. Using Explorer, navigate to the D:\Mount\Windows\boot\PXE folder, copy all content to the D:\RemoteInstall\boot\x86 folder. 
     
  5. Close all Explorer windows (the wim filter driver in WAIK 2.0 is really sensitive about open file handles when unmounting an image).
     
  6. In the Deployment Tools Command Prompt, type the following commands + press Enter after each line.
     
    Imagex /unmount D:\Mount
     
    Imagex /mount amd64\winpe.wim 1 D:\Mount 
     
  7. Using Explorer, navigate to the D:\Mount\Windows\boot\PXE folder, which now contains the x64 boot files, and copy all content to the D:\RemoteInstall\boot\x64 folder. 
     
  8. Close all Explorer windows.
     
  9. In the Deployment Tools Command Prompt, type the following command + press Enter.
     
    Imagex /unmount D:\Mount
     
  10. Using Explorer, copy the C:\Windows\system32\reminst\boot\boot.sdi file to the D:\RemoteInstall\boot folder.

Copy the x86 and x64 boot images

  1. On WDS01, using Explorer, copy any x86 boot image that you want to use to the D:\RemoteInstall\x86\Images folder, name the boot image boot.wim.
     
    Note: If you just want a boot image to test with you can copy the default Windows PE 3.0 x86 boot image from WAIK. It is named winpe.wim and is locate in the C:\Program Files\Windows AIK\Tools\PETools\x86 folder 
     
  2. Using Explorer, copy any x64 boot image that you want to use to the D:\RemoteInstall\x64\Images folder, name the boot image boot.wim.
     
    Note: Again, if you just want a boot image to test with, you can copy the default Windows PE 3.0 x64 boot image from WAIK. It is named winpe.wim and is locate in the C:\Program Files\Windows AIK\Tools\PETools\amd64 folder

Configure the WDS Providers

  1. On WDS01, using the Registry Editor, configure the WDS Providers order by navigating to the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\WDSServer\ Providers\ WDSPXE key, and create a new Multi-String Value with the following settings:
     
    Name: ProvidersOrder 
     
    Data: WDSSIPR 
     
  2. Using the Registry Editor, configure the TFTP root folder by navigating to the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\WDSServer\Providers\ WDSTFTP key, and create a new String Value with the following settings:
     
    Name: RootFolder
     
    Data: D:\RemoteInstall

Configure the Policies

  1. On WDS01, using Notepad, edit the C:\Windows\system32\wdssipr.dll.conf.ini file. In the IMAGES POLICY section, configure the following values
     
    X86BootImage=boot\x86\images\boot.wim
     
    X64BootImage=boot\x64\images\boot.wim 
     
  2. Save the C:\Windows\system32\wdssipr.dll.conf.ini file.

Additional DHCP and WDS provider configuration

  1. On WDS01, using a Command Prompt, configure the transport server to use DHCP by typing the following command + press Enter.
     
    WDSUTIL /Set-TransportServer /ObtainIPv4From:DHCP 
     
  2. Leave the Command Prompt open. 
     
  3. Using the Command Prompt, configure the DHCP PXEClient option, by typing the following commands + press Enter after each line.
     
    Netsh
     
    dhcp
     
    server \\WDS01
     
    add optiondef 60 PXEClient String 0 comment=”PXE support”
     
    set optionvalue 60 STRING PXEClient
     
    exit 
     
  4. Leave the Command Prompt open. 
     
  5. Using the Registry Editor, configure the DHCP ports option by navigating to the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\WDSServer\Providers\ WDSPXE key, and change the UseDhcpPorts data value from 1 to 0
     
  6. Using the Command Prompt, start the WDS transport server by typing the following command + press Enter.
     
    WDSUTIL /Start-TransportServer

Done! You should now be able to start the boot images over the network, having configured the WDS PXE listener on a standalone server.

Good luck / Johan Arwidmark

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Comments (24)  
Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By admiral64 on 5/14/2010
I have a scenario where management of DHCP is not by us, is there any way to still use Transport Server without making changes to DHCP?

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By admiral64 on 5/14/2010
I have a scenario where management of DHCP is not by managed by us, is there any way to still use Transport Server without making changes to DHCP?

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By jmontgomery on 5/26/2010
Curious if we could use an existing DHCP on another Server to make this work as well?

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By johan on 6/10/2010
Sure, the transport server does not require a local dhcp...

/ Johan

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By dangolo on 8/12/2010
Johan, i've been looking for this for MONTHS, you are my new hero!! Sites everywhere were saying it wasn't possible without AD, i knew they were full of crap. For crying out loud, PXE, dhcp, and WinPE never really interface at all with AD, why would it?!? I already made my domain-version of WDS, now for one of our distant branch sites, i'm goign to make a standalone. Gawd i freaking love you =D

@jmontgomery, yes dhcp can be on another server, mine is currently doing so, BUT BUT BUT it must be passing the correct DHCP OPTIONS to the PXE clients. For me it looked like this:
Option 66: WDSServer or IP 10.10.10.3
Option 67: boot\x86\wdsnbp.com

Works 100%, though i dont have any x64 machines. I want to believe that it checks and then sends the correct x86 or x86 version of "pxeboot.com" and then the boot.wim...

i love you
no homo
Dane

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By cfharris on 9/29/2010
This is a great walk-through. As is though, this works for deploying images you might already have, but not for creating them. I am having trouble seeing how you make new images. The "wdsutil /new" does not work to create a capture image. Do you have to use the AIK kit in order to create them?

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By JamezP on 4/29/2011
Guys, i get all the way to the end and when i run "WDSUTIL /Start-TransportServer" the service doesnt start. I get the following error.

####--------------------------------------------------------------------------
C:\Users\Administrator>WDSUTIL /Start-TransportServer

Windows Deployment Services Management Utility [Version 6.1.7600.16385]
Copyright (C) Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.


An error occurred while trying to execute the command.
Error Code: 0x41D
Error Description: The service did not respond to the start or control request in a timely fashion.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------####

Any ideas people? I have tried this twice from fresh install.

Cheers, Jamez

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By johan on 5/2/2011
Most likely missing DHCP configuration, are you running DHCP on the same machine?

/ Johan

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By yogesh on 10/11/2011
This tutorial is excellent. I have followed this one to build my WDS but stuck at the dhcp PXEClient configuration.

In my case i already got a dhcp server running in debian ( linux ) so while i was setting up my WDS server i did not select the dhcp server to be configured on the server. I just skipped the dhcp steps.
i think that i must configure my dhcpd.conf file. Can you guide me on how to insert these commands please:

add optiondef 60 PXEClient String 0 comment=”PXE support”

set optionvalue 60 STRING PXEClient

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By johan on 10/11/2011
It's been a while since I used a linux box for DHCP, but something like this should work:

option vendor-class-identifier "PXEClient";
next-server 192.168.1.210;
filename "boot/x64/wdsnbp.com";

/ Johan

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By yogesh on 10/19/2011
Thanks for the reply Johan,i'll give a try and give some feedbacks.

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By yogesh on 10/25/2011
In your example the next-server 192.168.1.210 is your WDS server?

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By johan on 10/26/2011
Correct....

/ Johan

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By stillgrey on 12/5/2011
Me 2. I have dhcp on this box and I can see it hand out an IP on pxe boot, but I can't get the service to start.
####--------------------------------------------------------------------------
C:\Users\Administrator>WDSUTIL /Start-TransportServer

Windows Deployment Services Management Utility [Version 6.1.7600.16385]
Copyright (C) Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.


An error occurred while trying to execute the command.
Error Code: 0x41D
Error Description: The service did not respond to the start or control request in a timely fashion.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------####

ANy other ideas :)
Thanks,
Grey

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By johan on 12/5/2011
Check the event viewer, but most often the following has been missed:

Change WDSServer\Providers\WDSPXE\UseDhcpPorts to 0

netsh
netsh>dhcp
netsh dhcp>server \\WDS01
netsh dhcp>add optiondef 60 PXEClient String 0 comment=”PXE support”
netsh dhcp>set optionvalue 60 STRING PXEClient
netsh dhcp>exit

/ Johan

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By colmtech on 12/7/2011
I'm getting the same error as above,

An error occurred while trying to execute the command.
Error Code: 0x41D
Error Description: The service did not respond to the start or control request in a timely fashion.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------####

and I have checked that WDSServer\Providers\WDSPXE\UseDhcpPorts is set to 0
Any Help Appreciated, Thanks!

Re: Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By stillgrey on 12/7/2011
No clue actually :) I removed the service and reinstalled it. It started. Then I started adding the regedits and seemed to have fits with providerorder. Finally it starts but now at the clinet I am getting an error the specified file was not found. Two questions. I donot have a reminst folder on my technician computer. There is one on the WDS box. I have tired that boot.sdi file as well as a copy from my technition computer found elsehwhere. Neither help.
The second, I am curious why "we" shared remoteinstall as reminst as I don't see where we reference that share anywhere?

Close perhaps?

Thanks,
Grey

Re: Archived Article - Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By paulispa on 4/25/2012
First of all, thanks for your work. I think it's very useful when creating a WDS without a AD. And I don't want to revive any old threads but just I have found some additional information that solved some of my issues. As written down in Microsoft Knowledge Base Article #259670 ( http://support.microsoft.com/kb/259670/en ) you don't need any extra information in your dhcpd.conf. It doesn't work when I activate these lines but works just fine without them.

Just wanted to say because this article has a high page rank and many ppl looking for information about WDS without AD will have a look at this page.

Re: Archived Article - Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By johan on 4/29/2012
Thanks for the feedback,

/ Johan

Re: Archived Article - Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By msveden on 8/21/2012
I have follow the instruction and everything went smoothly until I try to boot the client. I just keep getting "PXE-E55: ProxyDHCP service did not reply to request on port 4011". The only thing I found is to run "WDSUTIL /Delete-AutoAddDevices /DeviceType:ApprovedDevices" but since the Windows Deployment Services management tools are not configure this doesn't help...

Please help!

Regards Mikael

Re: Archived Article - Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By johan on 8/22/2012
Do you run DHCP on the same server as the PXE server? On the same subnet?

/ Johan

Re: Archived Article - Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By msveden on 8/27/2012
Yes, its the same server.
If I remove optiondef 60 PXEClient String 0 comment=”PXE support” and add option 66 and 67 it at least boot the but it stops on file \Boot\BCD missing status 0xc000000f.

/M

Re: Archived Article - Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By johan on 8/31/2012
I haven't seen that error, but I will doublecheck the instructions one more time during the weekend to make sure i didn't miss a setting.

Just for your information, this entire manual configuration is now built into the main setup of Windows Server 2012. So much easier to configure for standalione... just a checkbox in the wizard.

/ Johan

Re: Archived Article - Using WDS without Active Directory – Configuring a standalone WDS    By jpkk12 on 8/31/2012
First of all, thank you for your instruction.probably i memorize all above the step in this instruction(i don't know how many i install/uninstall this..), but i still got stuck in "PXE-E55 ProxyDHCP....error.This is 3weeks i trying to figure it out..i still can not get any answer of it.i applied lots of thing, i still can not go over it.. anyone know any clue of this problem? any advise?
Thank You

/sean


  
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