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Windows 7 Imaging - maintaining settings

Posted on 2014-12-16
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Last Modified: 2014-12-17
I have 90 laptops running Windows 7 Enterprise that need to be reimaged.  

I am having an issue that when I create the image, I go in and install all software, drivers etc fine.  I also go in an make changes to various software settings (i.e. update settings in Adobe Reader or Java) and make a desktop image change.

I run sysprep, create the image, upload it to the WDS server, reimage a machine.

Everything works EXCEPT the settings that I made to the software packages and the desktop image.  Am I missing something?
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Question by:Ross Kelsch
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by:Ben Hart
ID: 40502685
I personally do not sysprep.  We run a shop that has roughly 180 desktops/laptops, sysprepping removes too many settings for us.

In the beginning we prepped the host client.. windows updates, AV defs.. Office and the apps our users need. We do not join that host to the domain and make sure it has an obviously temp hostname.

 Ran Image-X using a PE bootable thumbdrive, did a full on clone of that system and apply it to downstream machines.  Been doing that for over 3 years now with zero issues.

Oh and our OS is also Win7 Ent.
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by:Ross Kelsch
ID: 40503078
Thanks Ben.  

So you just boot to WinPE and take the image via ImageX and then copy it on??

When you create the image, you start with a fresh install and make changes in audit mode?
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Nagendra Pratap Singh earned 500 total points
ID: 40504142
Your settings are done to the administrator account but your new users are created using the default user account.

Perhaps these can help. I have other links if you use MDT.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-in/library/hh825135.aspx


http://www.irongeek.com/i.php?page=security/windows-7-copy-default-profile
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by:Ben Hart
ID: 40504557
You know what, I don't use Audit mode either.  I followed the blog advice about 5 years ago from Brian Lee Jackson, I went to nab the url for you but it seem it's no longer hosted. :(

TheITBros on the other hand have the part I used to create my WinPE thumbdrive with Gimagex.  http://theitbros.com/dism-tool-winpe-3-1-boot-environment/

Booting to it, mapping a network drive that you have write perms to, then using GimageX to create a WIM is the easiest, non-automated process I have found.
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by:Ben Hart
ID: 40504558
But yes in teh beginning I start with a fresh Win install, pull all the updates it can, install AV, Office, etc.  I have set the security perms on it as well (which in our case is Domain\Domain Users in the local admin group.  Shut the machine down, boot to the USB and run with it.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Ross Kelsch
ID: 40505460
Thank you for your input!
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