Step-By-Step: Building Windows 10 Provisioning Packages

Standard practice for most IT administrators when migrating to a new client offering entails creating a baseline image of a desired client state. Next the IT administrator wipes the computer to be worked on to image it with the newly created client image. This procedure is not without it’s faults however and hardware inconsistencies have in past plagued imaging installs. Windows 10 provides an alternative to this with a more stable offering.

Windows 10 Provisioning Packages have the ability to prepare one or more devices for corporate use. These executable packages have the ability to enable rules on both office and personal use devices allowing for ease in deployment of said rules and preventing the opportunity for a data mix up to occur. Rules that can be configured are as follows:

  • Start menu customization - including the start menu, tiles, lock screen etc
  • Applications - enable rights to certain apps and/or only enable certain apps
  • Certificates - install and manage certificates
  • Mobile Device Management (MDM) - enroll devices into subscribed MDM services such as Intune
  • User Rights - specify app and data access privileges
  • Connectivity - create WiFi profiles
  • Data: provision videos, documents, images and audio

Provisioning packages can deployed via a direct connection to said device utilizing SD cards and/or USB Flash drives. Provisioning can also occur via a link provided by IT via email or other methods sharing said link.This post will provide steps in building provisioning packages for deployment on Windows 10 devices.

  1. Visit the Windows Insiders webpage and register to be a Windows Insider

  2. Download and install the latest version of Windows 10 Technical Preview

  3. Download and install the Windows Imaging and Configuration Designer on the admin machine
    NOTE: When installing the ADK, ensure the following are installed:

    - Deployment Tools
    - Windows Preinstallation Environment (Windows PE)
    - Windows Imaging and Configuration Designer (Windows ICD)
    - User State Migration Tool (USMT)

Step 1: Creating A New Provisioning Package

  1. Run the Windows Imaging and Configuration Designer (ICD)
  2. Select New provisioning package from the Windows Imaging and Configuration Designer (ICD) start page
  3. Enter the Project Details name and location where the ppkg file will be saved and click Next
  4. Select Provisioning Package from the list of available project workflows and then click Next
  5. Select Common to all Windows editions in the Windows edition window and click Next
    NOTE: Select one of the other options if the desire is to be specific as to the provisioning package
  6. Click Finish to start adding rules to the configuring package

Step 2: Customizing the Newly Created Provisioning Package

  1. The Customizations Page contains the following customizable attributes: Drivers, Driver Set, Applications, Windows Updates, Features on demand, Reference device data, Language packages
    Select the desired customization from the Available customizations panel

  2. Click the Export dropdown in the main menu and select Provisioning Package

  3. Provide a description of the provisioning package by filling in the following fields in the Provisioning Package Configuration screen:

    - Package Name – Currently pre-populated with the project name entered previously

    - Package Owner – Select one of the following

      - Microsoft
      - Silicon Vendor
      - OEM
      - System Integrator
      - Mobile Operator
      - IT Admin

    - Package VersionOptional - Provides ability to define major or minor package version

    - Package RankOptional – Select a value between 0 and 99. Default is O

    Click Next once configured

  4. Next is the option to enable Provisioning package security. Select either:

    - Enable package encryption - an auto-generated password is provided on the screen

    - Enable package signing - a valid certificate is required to sign the package

    Click Next

  5. Specify the output location where you want the provisioning package to go once it's built and click Next

  6. Click Build to start building the package

    NOTE: an error message will show up including a link to the project folder should the build fail. Scan the logs to determine the cause. Once corrected, build the package again

The name of the provisioning package, output directory, and project directory will be shown once the build is completed. Clicking Back will also allow for a duplicate creation of the provisioning package to be created in another folder. Details on applying the newly created package will be posted shortly in a future post.