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Oct 08

BartPE

So, YTG is about to receive a donation of a bunch of Thinkpad notebooks/netbooks. These machines, which include licenses for Win 7 Pro, will be used for volunteers, board members, ensemble members, and interns. Surprisingly, a lot of people don’t own laptops, or own such big ones that carrying them around is a pain. This way, YTG volunteers will get a very light form factor machine, with all the required software installed.

Because all the machines are the same hardware, I am having to revisit creating a standard image: something I haven’t done in about 8 years. (At ASIJ I used images, at Nokia we used automated installs due to the ever-changing hardware.) Of course, that means learning how to use sysprep all over again… I’m sure that will be the subject of a later post.

There are three test machines that I’m currently playing with. I’ve been using Clonezilla to back up the machines, simply because it’s easier to make a boot USB disk for (the machines have no optical drive), but now that I’ve decided to install Windows 7 on all the machines (might as well, they all have a license, and Win 7 is less of a hassle than Xubuntu for me), I’m switching to DriveImageXML, which means BartPE.

 

Having worked out all the kinks from it when I used it at Nokia, I’d forgotten what a pain in the ass it could be. Not booting, bluescreening because of incorrect storage drivers (the base version doesn’t cover a lot of SATA drives), etc.

So just briefly, this is what the process was (in case I ever have to replicate it):

 

  1. Download and install pebuilder from nu2
  2. Download PEtoUSB from http://gocoding.com/page.php?al=petousb and move executable to pebuilder dir
  3. Download bootsect.exe from http://www.sevenforums.com/installation-setup/54443-32-bit-bootsect.html (had to join the forums to do so… boo!)
  4. Download DriverPacks Base, storage, and LAN from http://driverpacks.net/docs/Miscellaneous%20guides/driverpacks-base-bartpe-guide
  5. Run DriverPacks Base decompression/install.
  6. Copy the storage and LAN .7z files into its DriverPacks dir
  7. Run DriverPacks. Pick BartPE plugins location. Slipstream.
  8. Build with pebuilder
  9. Run PEtoUSB, point at BartPE folder in pebuilder
  10. From the command line run bootsect /nt52 p: where P: is the target drive you just installed BartPE onto.

 

That should do it. Target machine should boot.

 

Oh, I also had to download and install the DriveImage XML plugin (.cab file).

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