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Harddisk Image

Posted on 2009-03-31
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Last Modified: 2012-05-06
I have 60+ desktop(IBM Thinkcentre). all have same configuration. Preload OS is windows XP Prof.Most installed application are same.
  I want to make harddisk Image of a PC which is loaded with all application.Keep a master copy so in case if any system failuer,on new system i can run that image to make ready to use for user in short time.
Is there any utility,software??

I tried with a digital doly - a linux bootable CD but it's not what i want.





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Question by:cp1041
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Assisted Solution

by:0ttaRulez
0ttaRulez earned 300 total points
ID: 24027946
Try acronis trueimage.

I think it's the best imaging software arround.

http://www.acronis.com/

u just make an image, put it on a dvd or harddive and deploy it to every workstation u want.
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by:Joseph Daly
Joseph Daly earned 300 total points
ID: 24028038
If your looking for a free version you can use driveimagexml. This is supported for imaging and restore using a BARTPE bootdisk as well.
http://www.runtime.org/driveimage-xml.htm
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KCTS earned 400 total points
ID: 24028062
To do this properly you need to follow this procedure

First you need to setup a PC and install Windows and any applications on it that you want. You can then configure it as desired. It is worth spending a bit of time and effort on this as it will form the basis for all computers cloned from this one.

Set up a dummy user account, log on using this account and set up the desktop, menus shortcuts, screen savers, map drives etc and all the other stuff that you want to standardize for new users. When all is to your liking, log off from the dummy account.. You can then copy the profile you have just created so that it becomes the default for all new users. To do this you need to log on as an administrator, You will first need to go to the Control Panel, and in Administrative tools, Folder Options, on the View Option make sure that the option to Show Hidden Files and Folders is selected. It is also a good idea to make sure that the Hide Extensions for known file types is NOT selected so you can identify files more easily later on. Then exit the control panel. Right click on My Computer and select Properties, Advanced, and click on SETTINGS under User profiles. Select the dummy profile and then COPY TO another user option. Copy the dummy profile to C:\Documents and Settings\Default User making sure that you change the 'Permitted to use' option to 'Everyone' so that the new users will have the necessary permissions on the profile. Confirm the action replacing the existing default profile when prompted.

The next stage is to prepare the PC for imaging, this involves creating an answer file for the mini-setup and running sysprep.

You will first need to install the deployment tools from the Windows CD onto the machine. Insert the Windows CD, navigate to the \Support\Tools folder and double click on the Deploy.cab file. Select all of the files in Deploy,cab, right click, extract, and extract all the files to a folder called C:\sysprep. (the folder name is important)

Run the SetupMgr program from C:\Sysprep and  select a new answer file, for a sysprep install for Windows. Select, Yes fully automate.  and go through and supply all the relevant information. If you select a fully automated installation as suggested you will not be able to leave some entries like computer name and product key blank but if you want to enter them at install time, dont worry too much now, just type in something and you can remove it in the next step.

After completing the answer file save it as C:\Sysprep\sysprep.inf. and close the dialog box. If you want to edit it the sysprep file, you can right click on sysprep.inf and select Open With& Notepad.  You can then change bits. For example if you want to be prompted for the computer name at install time change the line that reads

ComputerName=xxxxx
To
ComputerName=

As the value is now blank, you will be prompted for the computer name at install

One you are happy, it might be a good idea to copy the C:\Sysprep folder to a removable device such as a USB memory stick as the whole of the C:\sysprep folder will be permanently deleted later on in the process.

Now we need to run Sysprep. Double click on Sysprep.exe. Make sure that the Mini-setup option IS selected and NoSidGen is NOT selected and the SHUTDOWN option is selected before pressing RESEAL.

Windows will then strip the SIDs and other identifies out of Windows and prepare it for imaging. Windows will then shutdown. Once Windows is shutdown you need to start the PC booting from either a floppy disk or CD that contains your third party imaging program. This can be Symantec Ghost, Acronis, Drive Image similar.

You then need to copy the image file to a removable disk, CDs/DVDs network drive or whatever.

You then need to start the new PC, boot that from the floppy disk or CD that contains your third party imaging program and copy the image that you image of the first PC to the new PC.

When the image has been copied you can reboot the new PC. Windows will start and go through the mini-setup and configure itself using the sysprep.inf file that you created. If you left any of the required options, like computer name blank, you will be prompted to type them in.  Otherwise setup will be automatic. As its only re-configuring, not reinstalling the mini-setup takes about 5mins, at then end of which you will have a new computer which is identical to the first one but with a different name and different SIDs. All of the software and configurations will be preserved.
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Author Closing Comment

by:cp1041
ID: 31564777
Got a good utility.Also information which from i am not aware-Sysprep
Thanks to all
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