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MDT 2013 - Image Capture fails to upload image

Posted on 2014-07-29
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Last Modified: 2014-08-04
I am attempting to capture and upload an image. The drivers for the hardware imported into MDT. Downloading images works fine.

I run the litetouch script from within the OS but when the system reboots to create the WIM and upload to the server the NIC drivers are not found. Why?

I should also add that this was working. I am unaware of any changes made other than driver imports for new models.

Thanks!
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Question by:MarkMelanson
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Expert Comment

by:Cliff Galiher
ID: 40227191
The upload happens using the windows PE environment which is a different image and therefore will require direct injection of the NIC drivers in there as well. Of course I *strongly* recommend using a VM to build reference images. The whole process can be automated, no extra hardware is detected making the reference image more stable and smaller in size, and no driver injection is required for the capture process... ever.

If you read any worthwhile walkthrough of MDT or talk to anybody who is considered an expert in the field, you'll quickly see that using a VM is considered a standard practice these days.
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Author Comment

by:MarkMelanson
ID: 40227237
I am using a VM (vSphere 5.5) as well as physical PCs. They act the same.
The drivers are imported into MDT.
The ISO created by MDT works fine.
I am using the standard Sysprep and Capture task sequence.

Is there some other step required that I am missing to get the drivers into the WIM that is installed to the hard drive? I was under the impression that it uses the same WIM as WinPE.
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Author Comment

by:MarkMelanson
ID: 40227376
The MDT server is Windows Server 2012 with Data Dedupe enabled on the data drive only. We have been running dedupe for several months but I thought I'd throw that out there.
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Expert Comment

by:Cliff Galiher
ID: 40227385
No, it does not use the same WIM. Are you booting the capture process from a VM? It doesn't sound like it...
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Author Comment

by:MarkMelanson
ID: 40227389
Yes.

Boot Windows.
Run cscript \\MDTserver\depshare\scripts\litetouch.wsf
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Author Comment

by:MarkMelanson
ID: 40227402
OK. So I took a look around and found \Capture WIM\Boot.wim

Is it required that I inject the NIC drivers into that? That would make some sense anyway.
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Expert Comment

by:Cliff Galiher
ID: 40227453
For a VM it usually isn't necessary. The PE image usually has all necessary basic NIC drivers which work with both ESX and hyper-V VMs. But for physical machines, yes, that is where you need to inject NIC drivers.
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Author Comment

by:MarkMelanson
ID: 40227486
We are using VMXNET3 not e1000 so that makes sense. Odd that it worked before if the drivers have to be injected by hand.

I did not see any mention of this in the documentation for MDT. Still looking though...
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Expert Comment

by:Cliff Galiher
ID: 40227527
For reference images, it o's best to use basic drivers (e1007) and to avoid installing VM enhancements such as VMWare Tools or Hyper-V integration servers. Use legacy hardware emulation where possible. Again, this is only a reference image and it will be sysprepped which means hardware detection will be done again for each machine during the deployment phase using the reference image.

Additionally, VMWare does not officially support Tools in PE and doing so is a but of a pain.

http://kb.vmware.com/selfservice/microsites/search.do?language=en_US&cmd=displayKC&externalId=1011710

There are benefits to using VMXNet on a VM running production workloads, but there is no reason to do so for a reference image.
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Author Comment

by:MarkMelanson
ID: 40228814
I build the reference image on vSphere and have never had a problem uploading the image utilizing VMXNET3 and the Standard Client Task Sequence.

I think what I need is a definitive answer to the following question. When the WIM is copied to the hard drive and then set to boot from it where do the drivers come from?
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Accepted Solution

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MarkMelanson earned 0 total points
ID: 40228860
Yes! It is now working again. Here is what I have observed.

The missing NIC drivers were listed in the MDT GUI but I do not think the files were actually existing in the file system. I say this because after closing a re-opening the GUI several times over the course of this nightmare they finally disappeared from the GUI (WTH?). I re-added them and now all is well.

Coincidentally to that I had opened the drivers.xml in notepad but made no changes.

That is NOT cool.
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Author Closing Comment

by:MarkMelanson
ID: 40238518
Accepting my own answer such as it is.
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