DispersedNet DispersedNet

Disaster Recovery  «Prev  Next»
Lesson 2 Installation of CD-based images
Objective Install alternate CD-based images.

Install alternate CD-based Images

The process for deploying images typically involves five main procedures, which include:
  1. Modifying the installation of a CD-based image
  2. Associating an answer file with an image
  3. Restricting images
  4. Creating a RIS Startup disk
  5. Installing an image in a RIS client computer
However, the actual steps you will need to take to deploy images depends on the types of images you are using, whether you want to restrict images to designated groups, and the hardware that is available for the client computers. Deploying images may or may not involve modifying the installation of a CD-based image, associating an answer file with an image, restricting images to designated users, creating a RIS Startup disk for non-PXE network adapters, and installing an image on a RIS client computer.

When you create a new Windows 2000 Professional image on a RIS server, only the base operating system installation files and a generic setup script is installed. For many deployments, this is all you will need. However, you may want to customize aspects of the user's environment beyond what is done with the default setup script.

CD-based images

A CD-based image is an image of the operating system and its default settings. The term image refers to a copy of the files on the CD-ROM have been placed on the RIS server's hard disk. CD-based images are useful for deploying a basic Windows 2000 Professional installation that requires minimal configuration settings. When you install RIS, a CD-based image and a standard answer file (called Ristandard.sif) are created for you. The standard answer file provides the basic installation instructions. However, after the CD-based image is created, you can customize the basic answer file (or .sif file) or you can create additional answer files using the Setup Manager wizard.
For example, you might want to configure different answer files for different groups of users. There might be an Administrative Assistants group that needs to create a lot of reports. This group will probably not run many applications concurrently. You might want to set their screen resolution to 800x600. Another group, such as the Administrators group, may typically have many applications open at the same time, and therefore they need more screen "real estate." You would set their screen resolutions to 1280x1024 or 1600x1200. You accomplish these custom settings by using different setup information files.

Answer files

An answer file is a text file that contains the information that the user would usually need to supply during setup. It uses the same format as the unattend.txt files used for unattended installations in Windows NT 4.0 and Windows 2000. By using an answer file, you can:
  1. Deploy a partial or fully unattended setup of Windows 2000 Professional. You do this by configuring an answer file so that the image is installed with little or no user intervention.
  2. Deploy an image to a group of computers that requires custom settings. For example, you can configure an answer file that sets the display resolution to 800x600 or sets regional settings such as the time zone.

The answer file supports a new [RemoteInstall] section that contains the repartition parameter. If this value is not specified or set to yes, a RIS install will delete all partitions on the client computer and format the drive with one NTFS partition. If this value is set to no, RIS will use the default parameters in the client answer file. Partitions created for OEM (typically Compaq) power management are not affected by the RIS formatting process. The next lesson will show you how to associate an answer file with an image.