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using vSphere Client to clone Windows terminal Server joined to the domain ?

Posted on 2015-02-18
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Last Modified: 2015-03-19
People,

I’m going to deploy multiple Windows Server 2008 R2 Terminal Server (RDSH) VMs (around 50 server) on VMware environment, it runs Microsoft Office 2010 professional, so in this case after I have built them and then join them to my AD Domain, Can I just clone it from the vSphere Client to multiple different name ?
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Expert Comment

by:SagiEDoc
ID: 40618265
You can clone it. There will be less steps involved in cloning it before you join it to the domain. Better still would be to deploy each server from a template.
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Author Comment

by:Senior IT System Engineer
ID: 40618275
ok, what about if the server is already running and joined to the domain ?

can I still clone it and then how do I sys prep it ?
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Expert Comment

by:SagiEDoc
ID: 40618282
If it is connected to the domain you can still clone it, keep in mind that you will have to have the NIC disconnected on the cloned server if you have it powered on. At this point remove it from the domain and rename it. Then connect the NIC and add it back to the domain. Proceed with sys preping the cloned server.
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Author Comment

by:Senior IT System Engineer
ID: 40634579
Sagi,

Do i need to do anything else on the Terminal Server console to tell that this host is a new host from a cloned server ?
I waswondering about the uniqueness of the server after the cloning.
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Author Comment

by:Senior IT System Engineer
ID: 40641689
or do I have to do anything on the Terminal Server manager to make sure that the cloned VM is unique ?
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Accepted Solution

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Will Szymkowski earned 167 total points
ID: 40641981
@SagiDoc
If it is connected to the domain you can still clone it,

This is absolutely 100% false. You should not be cloning machines that have already been added to the domain and then deploying them with a different name. This will create duplicate Sid's on the network. This becomes an issues when machines are trying to get group policies, trust relationships break etc. 100% not recommended to clone machines while they are on the domain.

The proper way would be using the Microsoft Sysprep Utility using the /generalize switch. See below link for details.
https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh824938.aspx

Will.
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Assisted Solution

by:Aaron Tomosky
Aaron Tomosky earned 333 total points
ID: 40642585
+1 for Will

I basically follow these to setup my template:
http://notesfrommwhite.net/2014/07/20/how-to-build-a-windows-2012-r2-vmware-template/
http://willcode4foodblog.wordpress.com/2013/03/20/creating-a-server-2012-golden-image-with-sysprep-and-vmware-workstation/
http://willcode4foodblog.wordpress.com/2013/03/22/creating-a-server-2012-golden-image-with-sysprep-and-vmware-workstation-part-2-of-2/

###Then I add BGInfo
shell:startup will give you the startup folder for that user
this is the all users startup folder
C:\Program Data\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup
make a shortcut to bginfo and copy it here
then modify the command to:
C:\utils\BGInfo\Bginfo.exe /timer:0 /nolicprompt /silent

Open in new window


make your unattend.xml
c:\windows\system32\sysprep\unattend.xml 
(you might have to make this on the desktop and copy to the right place)

Open in new window

Make sure you use the CopyProfile secion
<settings pass="specialize">
    <component name="Microsoft-Windows-Shell-Setup" processorArchitecture="amd64" publicKeyToken="31bf3856ad364e35" language="neutral" versionScope="nonSxS" xmlns:wcm="http://schemas.microsoft.com/WMIConfig/2002/State" xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance">
        <ProductKey>XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX</ProductKey>
        <CopyProfile>true</CopyProfile>
    </component>
</settings>

Open in new window


then finally run sysprep
win+x admin cmd prompt
c:\windows\system32\sysprep\sysprep.exe /generalize /oobe /shutdown /unattend:C:\Windows\System32\Sysprep\unattend.xml

Open in new window


Once it's shutdown, create a template from this vm.  When you create a vm from the template, it will prompt you for an admin password on startup. Rename the computer, reboot, THEN join the domain.
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Author Comment

by:Senior IT System Engineer
ID: 40643917
THanks Aaron,

it seems that the command "dism /online /cleanup-image /StartComponentCleanup /ResetBase" is only available on Server 2012 R2 not 2008 R2.
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Assisted Solution

by:Aaron Tomosky
Aaron Tomosky earned 333 total points
ID: 40645233
Sorry, All my links are for 2012 and there are some differences as you have found. The important part is to make a template BEFORE joining the machine to the domain and running sysprep. I actually don't even use that dism command or the DefProf tool, I just included that link for some of the other stuff it talks about.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Senior IT System Engineer
ID: 40677256
Thanks !
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Author Comment

by:Senior IT System Engineer
ID: 40677257
So if the server / VM is already joined to the domain, can I still make it as the source or master to be cloned ?
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Expert Comment

by:Aaron Tomosky
ID: 40677309
I would disjoin it first
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