Windows 7 sysprep/generalize and rearm with WDS

I am installing windows 7 in a school lab environment with Windows Deployment Services.  I need clarification on how the sysprep rearm flag is used when deploying administrative images.

1.  Does the 3 ream limit apply if the machine is activated when sysprep/generalize is selected?
2.  Does the ream limit follow the clones after they've been deployed or does it get reset on new hardware?  This would only allow us to update and redeploy the image 3 times.
3.  Does the skiprearm setting solve all of my concerns?  I'm worried that this could cause licencing problems and duplicate SIDs.

Windows 7 in our environment is new for this coming school year and would like to start off in the right direction.  I'm looking for a best practices scenario and any surprises I might encounter in regards to cloning with WDS and the Sysprep Rearm limit.


Who is Participating?
Adam LeinssConnect With a Mentor Senior Desktop EngineerCommented:
sysprep /generalize on the unrearmed clones would work, I'm not sure about slmgr -rearm.  That might just reset the grace period.  Sysprep will create random SIDs for each one.
Adam LeinssSenior Desktop EngineerCommented:
1. Yes
2. Yes.  You can only rearm an image or a clone of an image 3 times max.  
3. It doesn't, but it won't reset the CMIDs and your KMS counts won't go up.  See
I think that Mark Minasi preaches the use of skiprearm:
However, I did e-mail him to let me know that he should be careful in recommending to everyone without mentioning the CMID issue.  I can't remember what he responded, but he didn't seem too concerned.
Adam LeinssSenior Desktop EngineerCommented:
*e-mailed him to let HIM know.  
tnormanAuthor Commented:
I know this isn't a place to express opinions but this is incredibly annoying.

Thanks aleinss, please look at my workaround solution and see if you think this will work

1.  Sysprep with -norearm
2.  Image Capture and deploy images
3.  run "cscript c:\windows\system32\slmgr.vbs –rearm" on the clones or sysprep /generalize

This way I would have an image that I can manipulate forever and deploy as long as I rearm each machine after the clone.

Will this work?
Question has a verified solution.

Are you are experiencing a similar issue? Get a personalized answer when you ask a related question.

Have a better answer? Share it in a comment.

All Courses

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.