I downloaded and installed the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (formerly known as BDD 2007) a couple of weeks back on my deployment servers to help me roll out new computers for our new library in Yarker. A had a heck of a time making it work right. I added the boot image to my WDS server and that went okay and I also added the WDS Capture boot image so I can capture images from my base machines.
So far so good.
I built my computer the way I wanted it for a base image, syspreped it and then booted using my WDS capture boot image. This is good so far. The image was captured then I copied it to my deployment server and added it as a operating system. I also added a few applications and gave it the proper silent install command line. Again so far so good. Then I decided to try rolling out the image.
This was not so good.
First off I was missing the install files. The easy fix for this is to add Vista as an operating system from the DVD, so I did that and that error was solved. Then I ended up not having any images show up when I tried using my custom WIM file in my script. Weird, so I tried a fresh Vista install, that worked but all the options I set in MDT weren’t being picked up. Turns out, using a Dell Vista DVD has an $OEM$ folder in the sources directory. You need to remove the items in this folder from your deployment point as MDT will inject its own files. So the settings problem is fixed on fresh installs using the tool but why no images when I try to use a custom image? Turns out using the WDS capture tool fails to add an edition to the WIM file. Using ImageX you can add an addition flag to the file, or use the Capture tool within MDT.Just a note, the capture tool within BDD builds your operating system from what ever operating system you select, installs any drivers, applications you select then captures the machine. Don’t use it to capture an already formed baseline. I used ImageX to add an edition flag then re-added to MDT. Then I was able to apply my custom image to a new computer and the proper applications were installing and I was good to go. Took me a couple of days of poking around with MDT to make it go properly, but it went pretty slick once I did.
A really good website for information for me was http://www.windows-noob.com. They had a lot of useful articles for MDT which helped me out with the Dell DVD source directory issue, which was what I needed to get things going properly.
My next project with it is to play with Windows XP on MDT and get things installed using it.