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This is probably in the wrong section or something, and is my first post here, I did a little searching but couldn't find anything relevant.

I'm attempting to create a deployable image that I can just apply to pretty much any PC I repair or look after, now this is not in a corporate environment as I'm basically the guy that fixes PCs for half the neighbourhood.

What I want to achieve is an image I can just set off running on both AMD and Intel based PCs and Laptops mainly working under XP that will come with all the required software to be web ready with a bunch of standard programs and tools. The latter is quite easy when you have tools like nLite to create such images with the software included but what I am struggling on the idea of in preperation of the image is hardware drivers.

If I was to create an image with say Intel drivers and other related drivers already installed and deployed such an image to an AMD based machine, would the system attempt to re-install with available drivers or would it simply not work.

If it would re-install then I would think it would be as simple as including a bunch of driver packs where everything would re-install on the target machine and all the other software would be unaffected.

If thats the case then there should be no problems in me doing this, all I'm looking for is confirmation as it would simplify my issues with re-installs when it is necessary.

I of course have my own images for use with this PC and can restore it in a couple of minutes to an optimised and full able state, I wish to do the same across other PCs

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shouldnt you be spamming the news media

to get your message across

instead of the message board

in the past the board has been a vehicle for

tech help

and a good one

with some great people

but your request

i feel has gone beyond that

do you mean

create an image here so you can drum up more biz


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i have bartpe

but it dosent work with vista

it keeps giving me an error message so if the poster is using vista

make sure it is servicable

if it is xp

it works great


Edited by martymas
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Generally when you use the term image you are referring to something like Norton Ghost or Acronis true image to refer to an image file created from a stable installation so that you can reinstall it easily on the same machine.

If you attempt to install it on a different machine you run into several issues.

1 is windows activation which relies on a hardware inventory; but you could do an image of a non activated windows .

2. Windows itself relies on a hardware abstraction layer , so that if you were to put it on a different machine , the HAL would not match the existing hardware and you would have to run a repair install; hardly a time saver. Just like if you move your hard drive from one computer to another or replace the motherboard and processor.

If you are talking about making a custom install cd, with all the extra drivers you need and the current service packs already on the disk; that is called slipstreaming and you do it with a tool called N-lite (or you can do it manually )

This way you can make one up to date installer for say Win XP with SP3 and all the drivers you need for all your machines on one disk and all you have to do is enter the individual product key for the machine when you install.

But in a business environment it is generally considered that time is money and it is best to use ghost or true image to create a recovery image for each machine when you have it properly configured and to periodically update these.

Then you have a file server where all users files are automatically backed up and synchronized with the copy on their computer or you set all computers to save to a folder on the server which appears as a mapped drive on each computer where each user has their own folder on the server .

Then you keep the server safe by raid (duplication of drives).

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Microsoft has tools for creating and deploying operating system images. I don't know the details.

That would be wonderful if I could do that at my shop. The things we could do would be great. I am assuming these tools are not available to the average person.

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I think you could probably do it by having Xp installed and configured on one hard drive along with your imaging software.

Then you remove that drive, and put in a new one and begin the windows install using the slipstreamed version with all upadates and drivers included.

When it goes for the reboot , you hold the power button and shut down.

Change that drives jumper to slave, and put the original drive back in.

Then you can image the install which is ready to reboot and do hardware configuration.

But then again, microsoft makes a toolkit for developers which allows you to customize the windows installer (such as make it look for an OEM blessing, etc) and it may allow you to create a modified installer which just copies an image file and continues.

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