What's Working for You in Deploying Windows 7 images.

For those of you successful with your image Deployments of Windows 7 in your environment.  Could you share what's working for you in terms of tools used and so on to capture images and deploy them accurately?

Reason being, that my imaging of Windows 7 works to a degree using Sysprep with an unattend xml and capturing with Acronis Snap Deploy.  However, once running sysprep on a machine being prepped for imaging, It always wipes my custom toolbar part of the taskbar and a few other settings.

Curious, what is working for any of you experts in deploying Windows 7 properly.

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I am not even capturing images anymore. That method is dated, and most are moving away from it.

I am using Windows Deployment Services together with the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010. Both are free software available from Microsoft. Windows Deployment Services is included with Windows Server 2003 R2 and above, and the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010 can be downloaded at the link below:


I use WDS to PXE boot the lite touch PE image from the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit. The toolkit allows you to create what's called a task sequence. With this, you can specify what Operating System you want installed, the name and organization on the image, the product key to use for that task sequence, and the administrator password. Then you can upload all of the necessary drivers to the toolkit, so that you can cleanly install each machine. This helps avoid activation issues with captured images, because you won't be capturing images anymore. The toolkit also allows you to upload all of the software that you want, and it automatically installs it after the OS install completes. You will have to configure the application to silently install with command switches through the toolkit. Many also create scripts to complete customization applications for Windows 7.

This combination has worked flawlessly for me in my organization, and I'm sure it will work great for you too.

If you decide to go with this combo, and need help setting it up, the experts here on Experts-Exchange can help you every step of the way--just ask new questions when you have them, and don't forget to accept solutions to your questions when somebody's answer solves your question.

Best regards,


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sparky321Author Commented:
Good answer Cody, will decide if I need to start using WDS for deployment.  A little off topic, what scripting are you using for application deployment or rolling them out in a GP?  Thanks
I am using VBScripts to copy necessary files/customizations. Thank you for the points and grade! :-) Good luck and have fun with this project. It's a great learning experience.
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Windows 7

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