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Network Install Of SBS

Posted on 2006-05-24
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Last Modified: 2007-12-19
I have a test environment that I use for multiple things over periods of time and every time I kill a drive during a project I have to ghost the original back onto it so I can start a new project. Basically what we do is test various types of software and set up domains to clone a client's setup. Now instead of having a original backup drive I want to upload the image to my server so I can just ghost it back and boot from a floppy, how do I do that? I am familiar with Linux and how to install it via FTP from a remote location but I did not know if Windows has that same capability.
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Question by:productivetech
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
ID: 16755644
You should be using Microsoft Virtual Server 2005, not Ghost. That's the way testing is done with the Windows Server system.  It's a free program now:  http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserversystem/virtualserver/default.mspx

You do need to be licensed for any additional servers you run with virtual server, but for testing purposes you should be fine.  There is a way to migrate a real server to a virtual one, but I haven't tested it yet with SBS, although it should work:  http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserversystem/virtualserver/overview/vsmtdatasheet.mspx

Jeff
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by:jm-johnmeyer-us
ID: 16756628
We use both ghost, virtual server and virtual PC in our environment -- lots of testing!

We have not been successful in using ghost with server images, although we are using an old version of it.  However, if I understand our question correctly, you are asking if the operating system supports this.  Windows backup does not support floppy based restore from a network share.    It does support floppy based restore if you use a local drive or tape device. However, it's still a lot of time to do the restore.

Anyway, we are moving all our ghost test environments to virtual server.  The reason virtual server is a good choice is because it much faster to work with once you set up your image.   Untoward app make changes you don't like?  Simple -- you can immediately kill the session and virtual server will undo any changes made to the disks.  Then restart.  So you go from a 10 to 40 minute reimaging process via ghost to a matter of 10-20 seconds via virtual server.  (If you are talking Windows backup, then you are going to have a 1-2 hour + based imaging process!)

You can also use Virtual PC, which has most of the same capabilities of virtual server, but runs as desktop application and not as a service.  (Either product will run on workstation or server and allows you to have multiple virtual machines running at the same time).  Virtual Server allows you to set up and simulate multiple network segments, and gives access via web browser or via a special client.

Note that vmware, the UNIX based competition for these, formerly sold $2K plus, but now they are coming out with a free version.

John
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
ID: 16756914
Exactly... When VS2005 came out it was about $500.00, but is now free.  The fact that you can basically restore a server within minutes is pretty cool... which is why I'm doing a bit of testing for using SBS virtually in a production environment.

The real test will be to see if the Virtual Migration tools will work on SBS because that would enable a much, much better way to do a hardware migration.

Jeff
TechSoEasy
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
ID: 16756917
At any rate, you will find that Microsoft does NOT support the use of Ghost on an SBS.

Jeff
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by:jm-johnmeyer-us
ID: 16760671
Let me know how that test goes... I am looking at putting 3-4 production servers onto a big multiprocessor vs box, but I have to say I'm still skeptical.

I have 1.5 GB on my SBS VS box, and when I ran two virtual XP machines on it, 640M total, it died.  (SBS was the host OS)  It could not have been the memory.  I guess I should look at limiting the processor on the vmachines, but I'm don't have the patience to test further on a production machine.
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
ID: 16766006
It would die because SBS needs a minimum of 256MB, and two XP's at 640 only leaves 220MB left!

Jeff
TechSoEasy
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by:productivetech
ID: 16836119
Ok guys thanks for the input! I have been spending several intervals of time attempting to perform this task and I cannot complete it. I got my images cut down to fewer than 3GB and when it is GHOSTED it comes roughly to 980MB. I still have a dilemma with a ghost boot disk however. When I made the boot disk with the drive mapping option, loaded the network dos driver, and rebooted I encountered errors. It stated at one point I may need to use the NXF something driver as the DOS driver does not support loopback. After attempting this in several ways the end result is I could not be authenticated by a server and I will have limited network resources. The IP fails due to the DHCP contact problem and then a Syntax error. I am not sure at this point if the problem is rolling down hill causing more or if each error is an additional problem. I ran the NET HELP with the corresponding 4 digit code to see the errors I was receiving but the help files honestly did not help. The drive image is on the server now, and I just need to be able to roll the image to a fresh drive . . . Any takers?
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by:productivetech
ID: 16836148
PS. I am not ghosting SBS directly what I am trying to do at fist is ghost XP to the network drive, and roll it back over. Once I get that done I think I have a way to deal with the SBS issue.
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by:jm-johnmeyer-us
ID: 16836241
Note that both Jeff and I recommended a virtual machine solution.  if you are more familiar with Unix, I recommend looking at the free verison of VMWare as a virtual machine solution.

Is it correct that you are trying to use SBS as a ghostcast server, and that you are imaging workstaions and trying to be able to image based on boot floppy?  If that's the case, you need to create working ghost boot floppy, which is no easy task.

This question might more effectively be closed and a new question opened in XP or DOS because now you are in DOS territory.  You need to boot DOS and bind a network driver so Ghost can do its thing.

DOS is no longer well supported and consequenlty is sensitive to network cards.   I have seen technicians replace perfectly good brand new network cards with old, low performance cards, in order to deal with this problem, and it typically this approach is very effective. The  card to use used to be the 3C905, however, I believe this is probably not available now.  In my experience, 3COM has provided the best support for DOS.

Please upload a copy of the autoexec.bat, config.sys, and any .ini file being used by the network card so I can compare to ghost floppy here and try to find the syntax error.  Also please post any error messages here verbatim.

Thanks.

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by:productivetech
ID: 16836648
Ok I will post the files in txt format in a bit. Quickly I will recap as much of the boot as I can. Previously before viewing your reply I looked into the problem and swapped out the old onboard LAN card for a 3C905B-TX and remade the boot disk.

Warning: Since the MAC driver does not support loopback the NTSNX driver may be necessary.

Waiting for DHCO server
NTS$NTST2: NTSO108 Ip Cannot be obtained.
NTS$NTST2: NTSO110
Notify Administrator to correct the problem and reload.

NET5733 The protocol manager has report an incomplete bind.
Start Requester service? Y/N Yes
LAN Adapter 1 reported error 54 the network is busy.
Net Help 3280
Enter your Domain User name: XXXX
Enter your Domain Password: XXXX
Not Authenticated By Server
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
ID: 16836975
Sorry I can't give you any feedback on this because I don't use those tools.  I would still suggest that you use Virtual Server 2005 and you would find that your Virtual images are about the same size as the Ghost images you are getting.  Furthermore, because of Virtual Server's "Differencing" disks, you can revert to your original installation point at any time.

Good luck.

Jeff
TechSoEasy
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by:jm-johnmeyer-us
ID: 16838819
I don't see a syntax error message.

Are you certain DHCP is running?  Can you check the DHCP log on the server to see if there is an error?  

Loopback would likely not be necessary, I believe that gives the machine the ability to make connections to itself -- over 127.0.0.1 -- and would not be needed.

Here is my ghost boot disk content, works on 6 ghost machines we run here:

 Volume in drive A has no label.
 Volume Serial Number is 0AC5-730B

 Directory of A:\

03/12/2001  02:54 PM            43,773 IBMBIO.COM
03/12/2001  02:54 PM            42,550 IBMDOS.COM
03/12/2001  02:54 PM            53,541 COMMAND.COM
03/12/2001  02:54 PM            37,681 MOUSE.COM
09/05/2003  07:25 PM                93 AUTOEXEC.BAT
09/05/2003  07:25 PM                81 CONFIG.SYS
09/05/2003  07:25 PM    <DIR>          GHOST
09/05/2003  07:25 PM    <DIR>          NET
09/05/2003  07:38 PM                24 MOUSE.INI
               7 File(s)        177,743 bytes

 Directory of A:\GHOST

09/05/2003  07:25 PM    <DIR>          .
09/05/2003  07:25 PM    <DIR>          ..
09/03/2003  05:23 PM           644,976 GHOST.EXE
               1 File(s)        644,976 bytes

 Directory of A:\NET

09/05/2003  07:25 PM    <DIR>          .
09/05/2003  07:25 PM    <DIR>          ..
03/12/2001  02:54 PM            47,760 El90x.dos
03/12/2001  02:54 PM            21,696 PROTMAN.DOS
03/12/2001  02:54 PM            13,770 PROTMAN.EXE
03/12/2001  02:54 PM             8,513 NETBIND.COM
03/22/2001  05:21 PM             5,781 DIS_PKT.DOS
09/05/2003  07:25 PM               142 PROTOCOL.INI
               6 File(s)         97,662 bytes

     Total Files Listed:
              14 File(s)        920,381 bytes
               6 Dir(s)         531,968 bytes free





PROTOCOL.INI Content


[protman]
drivername=PROTMAN$

[pktdrv]
drivername=PKTDRV$
bindings=nic
intvec=0x60
chainvec=0x66

[nic]
drivername = EL90X$



AUTOEXEC.BAT content

@echo off
prompt $p$g
\net\netbind.com
MOUSE.COM
cd \ghost
echo Loading...
GHOST.EXE



CONFIG.SYS content

DEVICE=\net\protman.dos /I:\net
DEVICE=\net\dis_pkt.dos
DEVICE=\net\El90x.dos



Hope this helps...
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Author Comment

by:productivetech
ID: 16844590
Ok I want to thank you for all your help and jm-johnmeyer-us your post made a difference indeed. I changed it to a static IP and now I am past ALL error except ERROR 5. Apparently Access is denied although I can access it through windows. The file and folder is 100% shared with access to me as a user. Any ideas what I am missing now?
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by:jm-johnmeyer-us
ID: 16846845
Is the server name and share name less than 8 characters with no spaces?  This is a requirement of the DOS redirector.

Jeff maybe could help more on this, but I am seeing some group policies on my SBS server that would probably defeat the DOS redirctor, specifically the following:

Microsoft Network Server: Digitally Sign Communications (always) = Enabled

I would try change to disabled.

Microsoft Network Server: LAN Manager Authentication Level: Send NTLM Response Only

I would try change to send LM and NTLM response.

These are on the server -> Group Policies -> Default Domain Controllers -> Computer Configuration -> Windows Settings -> Security Settings -> Local Policies -> Security Options.

It sounds like you are not using ghost server but are instead using the MS DOS redirector to map a share to the server so you can reimage. Ghost server has the advantage of eliinating the need for the redirector, so I recommend it.  My floppy is based on Ghost server -- it loads TCP/IP and then runs ghost.exe and that's all that is needed.

John.


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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
ID: 16846936
I gotta tell you that this is why I wouldn't use Ghost, and why it's not recommended/supported with SBS.

It doesn't make any sense at all to me to try and troubleshoot this when there is a viable and proven alternative.  (Unless you are just trying to explore the interworkings of all this stuff for some crazy reason).

Since SBS has numerous preconfigured settings which if modified would render the SBS useless, I would tend to not mess with those.

Jeff
TechSoEasy
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by:jm-johnmeyer-us
ID: 16848141
Jeff  out of curiousity what would you recommend for workstation imaging?  RIS?  Ghost?  Scripted installs?
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Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy earned 1500 total points
ID: 16854170
In my world, we don't tend to image workstations because when you have only 15 of them on a network with 6 different hardware configurations it hardly makes sense.  But for a lab environment, I still use Virtual Server 2005.

I have a lab network set up on a single machine that has Windows Server 2003 64bit as it's host OS, then the guest OS's are all 32bit:  SBS, Server 2003 Standard, Win2K Server, XP Pro(two instances), Win2K Pro, and RHEL 3.0.  The machine has 8GB RAM and works quite well for recreating most any scenario.

Jeff
TechSoEasy
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by:jm-johnmeyer-us
ID: 17058830
What was the ultimate resolution of your issue, productivetech?
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by:productivetech
ID: 17060851
Failure to be authenticated. I installed a clean version of SBS with no security in the way, not firewall, nothing but a router, and still received access denied from a simple share. Instead of mapping a drive from a server with PC Dos I decided to just make a removable drive and use it as a ghost cast server accompanied with a floppy. Instead of network it’s more peer to peer.

It seems to me that there is a strong possibility that the IBM NETBUI protocol that loads with Ghost that the protocol maybe too simple for SBS and there are security settings built in to stop DOS using a NETBUI protocol. I could not verify what settings, registry, or what was doing it but this is working fairly well in comparison.
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by:jm-johnmeyer-us
ID: 17061173
Good deal, thanks for the info.
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