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Automated Workstation Imaging Software

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Automated Workstation Imaging Software

Postby tech-man » Fri Jan 08, 2010 4:20 pm

Hello All,

I have been tasked with implementing and setting up an imaging server to deploy images to bare-metal machines and brand new systems while maintaining our current naming scheme.

I am running Windows 2003 SBS and currently employ the use of MS RIS w/ sysprep to accomplish the imaging. However, the goal is to fully automate this process and as it stands, i still need to touch the system when imaging. I have to purge the drive, recreate the MBR, and prompt the mini-setup to complete the imaging process. This of course is negligible with respect to time, but still an unnecessary step.

I have tried ACRONIS and Symantec GHOST, which appear to do just that be requires alot more configuration, is not very intuitive, and does not accomplish everything. I still needed to a) install a client software onto workstation to be able to see the workstations server-side and b) needed to install 3 separate components just to PXE boot into the system. That project turned out to be more work than it was worth for something that should be very simple in design and implementation.

My question is....if anyone has any suggestions on an imaging software that is relatively simple in setup and implementation and accomplishes the following:

1. bare-metal system imaging - in other words, can i crack open a new system out of the box, PXE boot up to this imaging software and pull down an image and have it run automated.

2. maintain my current name scheme - i need to have systems added to my domain in consistence with my current name scheme automatically - my current RIS does this

3. PXE boot or network boot into software to pull down image

I am sure I am leaving something out, so if you have any questions about what i'm trying to do, i will gladly fill in any blanks.

Thanks in advance!!
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