Creating RIS images
As we have seen, CD-based RIS images can be created throug= h the RISetup utility. Additionally, there is RIPrep.exe, a utility that allows an administrator to clone a standard corporate desktop for deployment to other systems. In this section, we will examine the RIPrep utility, and also learn about creating RIS boot disks for compatible network adapters.
Unlike RISetup, which only allows an administrator to depl= oy a CD-based setup of Windows 2000 Professional (even a network-based installat= ion is just a copy of the files from the CD shared on a network drive), RIPrep = can be used to deploy the operating system plus customized settings and even locally installed desktop applications. This process is not the true disk cloning that products like Norton Ghost provide, as it can only be used with Windows 2000 Professional. Additionally, RIPrep does not support multiple h= ard drives or multiple partitions on the computer that the image is being creat= ed on.
Other limitations of RIPrep include the requirement that a CD-based image that is the same version and language as the RIPrep image also exist on the RIS server, and that the target system must have the same hardware abstraction layer (HAL) as the system us= ed to create the image. By having the same HAL, that means that an image created on a single processor system cannot be installed onto a dual processor system. Since Windows 2000 does not support Alpha processors like NT 4.0, you won't have to worry about mixing up Intel (I386) and Alpha images.
While there are limitations to RIPrep, there are advantage= s to it over using RISetup to create images. Most notably, RIPrep allows an administrator to create a standard desktop image and then use RIS to deploy= it to new computers as they come in from an OEM. Additionally, reinstallation = of the operating system is much faster from an RIPrep image since the image is being applied as a copy operation to the target hard drive and not running though an actually Windows 2000 installation as would happen with a CD or <= span class=3DGramE>network-based RISetup image.
Creating images with RIPrep
Creating an image with RIPrep is a two-step process. First= , you install and configure a computer with Windows 2000 Professional and the specific applications and settings you want to include in the image. Second, you run RIPrep.exe from the RIS server. There is an important distinction to keep clear. The RIPrep.exe utility is located on the RIS server, but is = executed from the RIS client that the image is being created on. From the client, cl= ick Start->Run and type:
If you attempt to run RIPrep.exe from a non-Windows 2000 Professional system, you receive an error message stating that the utility = will only run on Windows 2000 Professional. When you do, however, run RIPrep fro= m a valid system, the Remote Installation Preparation Wizard starts as shown in figure 13.13.
Figure 13.13 The Remote Installation Preparation Wizar= d is started by executing RIPrep.exe from a Windows 2000 Professional client com= puter
Even though you ran RIPrep.exe from one RIS server, you do= not have to necessarily copy the image you are creating to that particular serv= er. Figure 13.14 shows the next step in creating an image with RIPrep, where you choose which RIS server to copy the image to.
Figure 13.14 If you have multiple RIS servers on your network, you can choose which server should receive the image
The next step in creating the RIS image is to supply the n= ame of the installation directory on the RIS server previously chosen. Typically, = you would type the name of an existing directory only if you were replacing an existing image. If this new image will not be replacing an existing image, = type in a new directory name as shown in figure 13.15 and click next.
Figure 13.15 Supply a directory name on the RIS server= for the Remote Installation Preparation Wizard to copy the image
In our example, the image is being created for a corporate= web developer environment. For that reason, we gave the directory a descriptive name such as webdev in order to identify the image it contains on the RIS server.
In figure 13.16 we see the next step in creating an image,= which is assigning a friendly name to the image and creating the help text. The friendly name is what displays in the list of available images during the Client Installation Wizard. The help text provides an additional descriptio= n to help the user identify the correct image to use when acting as a RIS client= . In our example RIS image for a web development system, we list the applications that will be installed on the system along with the Windows 2000 Profession= al operating system as part of the imaging process.
Figure 13.16 By assigning a friendly name and help tex= t, users can identify the correct image to use during the Client Installation Wizard
If you have any programs or services running that could interfere with the imaging process, Windows 2000 will warn you. Figure 13.17 lists a number of programs and services that were running on the RIS image source workstation at the time this example image was being created. Once y= ou have closed the programs and stopped the necessary services, click next.
Figure 13.17 The Remote Installation Preparation Wizard prompts you to close any programs and services that might interfere with the imaging process.
Before beginning the actual image creation, the wizard all= ows you to review your choices. Notice in figure 13.18 that the folder name is incorrect. Initially we had created a generic folder that we had intended to use for RIS images, only to later decide to create separate subfolders for = each image. By reviewing the settings we had configured, we were able to back up through the wizard and change the folder name from RISimages to w= ebdev before starting the actual image creation.
Figure 13.18 Before starting the actual image creation= , take a moment to review your settings and ensure they are correct.
The last step, as shown in figure 13.19, is an information dialog from the Remote Installation Preparation Wizard that describes the process that is about to occur. Once you understand what is about to happen= on your system, click next to continue. You can watch the RIPrep wizard image process taking place, which will be similar to that shown in figure 13.20.<= /p>
Figure 13.19 The RIPrep wizard informs you of how the = image process will take place on your system before beginning
Figure 13.20 The RIPrep wizard displays the current st= atus of the image process, showing the completed, current, and pending tasks
images created by the RIPrep wizard are stored in the same subfolder as images created during RISetup. If you took the default settings when we examined the RISetup wizard earlier in this chapter, and are using = an English language version of Windows 2000 Server, your RIS directory structu= re will be as follows:
* = \RemoteInstall\Setup\English\Image= s\win2000.pro\i386\ -- This is the default image created during the RISetup wizard earlier. The= re are subdirectories underneath i386 for this CD-based installation image, fo= r system32, templates, and uniproc.
* = \RemoteInstall\Setup\English\Image= s\webdev\i386\ -- This is the image directory we just created for our webdev image. There = is a directory called Mirror1 that appears under i386 that does not appea= r in the subdirectories of a RISetup created image.
In addition to the directory structure created, it is impo= rtant to know what files are important to the RIPrep image. These files are as follows:
* = RIPrep.log -- This ASCII text file documents the Remote Installation Preparation Wizard image process, listing any errors and relevant information that might be of troubleshooting use to an administrator.
* = Bootcode.dat -- This file is located in the \Mirror1 subdirectory of the image's i386 folder, and contains the boot sector information for the client system.
* = Imirror.dat -- This file also is located in the \Mirror1 directory, and contains installation information about the image source computer, such as the installation directory and the HAL type.
Dec 13, 2007 |
Microsoft Windows Server Standard 2003 for...