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:

Deploying Windows 7 + Office 2010 Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010 – Part I

Deploying Windows 7 + Office 2010 Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010 – Part II

Deploying Windows 7 + Office 2010 Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010 – Part III

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.

Requirements

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.

Environment

  • 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.

Server

  • 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).

Installation

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:

  1. Create the distribution share.
  2. Add operating system files to the distribution share.
  3. Create a task sequence for the reference computer.
  4. 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.

Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010 Beta 1: Using MDT to Prepare, Install and Capture customized Windows 7 Images – Part II

Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010 Beta 1: Using MDT to Prepare, Install and Capture customized Windows 7 Images – Part III

Cheers!

IMPORTANT: Updated versions from this series using Windows 7 + Microsoft Office 2010 in automated deployment with MDT 2010 can be found here:

Deploying Windows 7 + Office 2010 Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010 – Part I

Deploying Windows 7 + Office 2010 Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010 – Part II

Deploying Windows 7 + Office 2010 Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010 – Part III

 

43 Comments »

  1. Your tutorials are really helping me as I move away from Acronis …

    But I’ve just come up with a ‘stopper’ – in my MTD 2010 Beta 2, I don’t have the “Deployment Workbench” > “Deploy” section at all … there is no “Deploy” section … just “Information Centre” and “Deployment Shares”

    I’ve been playing with this since yesterday and have never seen this tree …

    Hmmm … any thoughts ?

    Thanks for some great blogs

    S.S.

  2. Thanks Orval for your comments. I’m actually working in a few more posts about MDT 2010 RTM + SCCM 2007 SP2 RC, to deploy Windows 7 images.
    Cheers!
    Augusto

  3. Hello,

    I am having same issue NO “Deploy” Option. I have installed following software:

    1) WDS 2008
    2) WAIK for Windows 7 and W2K R2
    3) Application Compatiblity Tool
    4) Windows 2008.

    I have checked everything but Not able to find Deploy option. Any suggestion would be great help

  4. Quoted from other website:

    “In MDT 2008 Update 1 you had to create and configure distribution shares and deployment points. You may recall that a distribution share was the folder that contained the source files for an operating system such as Windows Vista that you planned on deploying using MDT 2008 Update 1. The distribution share also contained any packages, drivers, or applications you wanted to include in your install. A deployment point on the other hand was a folder that contained all the files needed to deploy your Vista image together with any drivers, packages and applications needed for the install. A big change in MDT 2010 is that these two things (distribution shares and deployment points) are now combined into a single thing called a deployment share. This change simplifies the process of preparing and using your MDT-based deployment infrastructure.”

    That`s why you wont find any “Deploy” option in MDT 2010 RTM. :-)

  5. Brilliant! Thank you!! Finally, a proper Step-by-step “How to”. Even Microsoft can’t seem to give us this information in one simple place. Honestly, I went through at least 30 pages of half-written Microsoft babble before I found this site. I had MDT up & running in minutes & am currently deploying my first W7 image via MDT. (Done a few using WDS though).
    Sorry to moan about Microsoft, but they love giving you tiny bits of the puzzle diseminated via dozens of text-heavy, disparate web pages. They couldn’t explain their way out of a paper bag without writing a hundred thousand words about how paper’s made!

    By the way, your images aren’t showing in IE8

    • Hello David,
      Thanks for your comments, and I’m really glad that these posts helped you.
      Strange about IE8 and the images, I’m currently using this browser and I don’t have the problem.
      Thanks!
      Augusto

  6. Hi,
    I have been looking for something like this for ages. It is an excellent document, but I have installed the latest MDT 2010 RTM and the steps have changed ever so slightly.
    Do you know when you will be releasing your MDT 2010 RTM update?

    Thanks!
    Neil

    Again, a fantastic document!

  7. (MDT 2010) I have been using MDT2010 for OS deployment but i have a challenge. My reference PC do not log on automatically using the information in the answer file, rather, the machine boots out of box (instead of audit mode)making it impossible for me to perform image capture section of task sequence. What can i do to enable my reference PC to boot automatically into audit mode.

  8. Pingback: [MDT] It works!
  9. Hi Augusto Alvarez,

    I am using MDT2010(5.0.1641.0) to create a REF. PC and capture it. The reference PC installation was successful but could not auto log on for capture process to begin.

    What can i do.

    Thanks.

      • I experience the log on problem at the point where the Ref PC is supposed to Use the Auto log on credentials in the answer file to relog on after the windows image have been installed on the Ref PC so that the process of the .wim image file can take place.

    • Again at that point, the Ref PC boos in the OOBE and requests for product Key to be entered. At This point, i can only continue the process manually logging into Audit mode.

      • Hello Uche,
        Check the LiteTouch.log and verify why the credentials are not working (possibly the OS is missing network drivers?). You can find this log in %WINDIR%\Temp\BDDLogs
        Hope it helps,
        Cheers!
        Augusto

  10. Hi,

    I using MDT 2010 and imported the OS to deployment share and application is also imported… task sequence is also created and application is selected in task sequence. Deployment share is updates … OS installation goes OK but application never installed. I tried different applications like MS Office, Roxio CD tools etc.

    Also I wish that all applications (for example Office, PDF Reader, McAfee, Real Player) should be shown in deployment and user has choice to select the application they are going to instal form that options. ( I checked the options “Display Application in Deployment” and option “skip application in task sequence” is delected).

    Any ideas ?

    • Hello Wayne,
      No, the same steps do not apply for Windows XP, since with that OS we don’t have .WIM files natively.
      You can find several guides if you browse around with Google/Bing.
      Cheers!
      Augusto

  11. Hi Augusto,

    I just want ask, what are the best practices in upgrading MDT 2008 Update 1 to MDT 2010 Update 1, what do we need to back up.

    The current setup is:

    MDT 2008 update 1
    SCCM 2007 R2
    application packages and driver packages for Windows Vista
    task sequence
    there’s no Deployment share

    Thanks…

  12. I need help. The Deploy option under Task Sequence is not showing in MDT 2010, therefore i cannot create any deployment points. I’ve already removed MDT& re-installed it with MSXML 6.0 Service Pack 1 (MSXML6.1), .Net Framework 3.5 SP1 and still can’t the depolyment option. Any help is greatly appreciated. Thanks.

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