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Windows 7: Hardware independant imaging


28 Dec 2010   #1

7ven ultimate
 
 
Hardware independant imaging

What 'm trying to figure it out is making a windows 7 image that is hardware independant, meaning that I should have all the files needed to install windows 7 then could add all drivers needed for a specific computer (and eventually the software I might want to be installed when that install will be completed).

After searching the web I came across sysprep (that is bound to imaging a specific machine), system center control manager (that requires a physical server running a sql database and a domain based computer running system thing), some tools from paragon (that can only manage .inf based drivers) and at the end just nothing !!!

IS that so way out of the line thinking of such a way to install a system by using an hardware independant image ???

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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28 Dec 2010   #2
Microsoft MVP

W 7 64-bit Ultimate
 
 

Have a good look at this one mate and it's free.


Paragon Adaptive Restore Technology
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Dec 2010   #3

7ven ultimate
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Bare Foot Kid View Post
Have a good look at this one mate and it's free.


Paragon Adaptive Restore Technology
It can only use .inf based drivers : in the case the driver is an exe file that cannot be uncompressed/unpacked or that doesn't contain an .inf file, this software is just useless.
Thanks for your input but as it is said in my post, I already came upon paragon's solutions (and by the way adaptive restore is to "unleech" an old windows upon a new hardware platform, I want to be able to install a new box (sure i could create a fresh windows platform to adaptive restore it onto a new hardware, but that is just cutting hair in pieces, don't you think ?)).
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28 Dec 2010   #4

Windows 8.1 Pro (x64)
 
 

Windows Automated Installation Kit, WAIK for short is hardware independent. When you install Windows 7 you are installing from an image made with WAIK.

Maybe these might help:

http://benosullivan.co.uk/windows/ho...omplete-guide/

Side note, when creating the base image instead of using a virtual machine or another computer I use Windows' support for booting from Virtual Hard Disks (VHD).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Dec 2010   #5
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Apart from the technical details, what about the product keys you need for each PC. You cannot just move a system from one box to the next without running into validation problems.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Dec 2010   #6

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

If I understand your post correctly - you want to inject drivers that are not already in the image.

In that case , sysprep won't do it.

You can use sysprep , or Paragon to make all drivers in the image file repository available on the new hardware.

You can use Paragon to inject extra drivers in inf form.

However, your drivers come as an .exe.

Try extracting the .exe - you should then have an extracted folder containing the .inf to point paragon at.

Uniextract (free) will probably be the simplest way to do the extraction Lupo PenSuite: Box

Otherwise, you should at least be able to get to the desktop after sysprep/paragon and then install the drivers.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Dec 2010   #7

Windows 8.1 Pro (x64)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by SIW2 View Post
If I understand your post correctly - you want to inject drivers that are not already in the image.

In that case , sysprep won't do it....
If using the built in imaging capabilities of Windows 7 (WAIK for example) one can inject drivers and other files into an existing image. Either by mounting the image with imagex or with another tool DISM from WAIK.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Dec 2010   #8

7ven ultimate
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by logicearth View Post
Windows Automated Installation Kit, WAIK for short is hardware independent. When you install Windows 7 you are installing from an image made with WAIK.

Maybe these might help:

How To Image and Deploy Windows 7 a Complete Guide - Using sysprep and imagex - Ben O'Sullivan

Side note, when creating the base image instead of using a virtual machine or another computer I use Windows' support for booting from Virtual Hard Disks (VHD).
Let's say that things don't always start well....
Using your link (I already had waik) the first answer i got was "copype isn't a command, blah blah" (running a 7 x64)... because, of course, I had to launch 'deployment tools command prompt' to update paths instead of basic cmd and for an x64 based computer WAIK is in x:\program files\windows AIK (you might want to update your tutorial). Regarding this specificity do I have to assume that the amd64 folder is to be used instead of x86 ?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Dec 2010   #9

Windows 8.1 Pro (x64)
 
 

Well its not my tutorial, just one I found while doing a search. There was a good one I found a while back for making custom images for Windows 7. But cannot currently find it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Dec 2010   #10

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

I am not entirely sure that is going to help.


Dism /image:C:\test\offline /Add-Driver /driver:C:\test\drivers\mydriver.INF

The driver servicing commands can be used on an offline image to add and remove drivers based on the INF file, and on a running operating system (online) to enumerate drivers. Microsoft® Windows® Installer or other driver package types (such as .exe files) are not supported.
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 Hardware independant imaging




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