Co-existing PXE Boot for MDT standalone Image Capture & ConfigMgr Image Deployment Environments

The Microsoft Deployment Toolkit is great for building and capturing your reference images because allows you to use the copyprofile technique to configure user settings. System Center Configuration Manager 2007 is great for Zero Touch Deployments of you enterprise image. But what if you have a lab environment with one server and you want to have PXE boot work for both? Co-location of Image Engineering and Image Deployment environments usually only occurs in a lab environment on an isolated network. Here’s how to switch machines to boot from one or the other:

  1. Install the PXE service point role on the WDS Server.

  2. Configure the WDS Server to respond only to known clients as below: 

    WDSUTIL /Set-Server /AnswerClients:Known

  3. You can setup both the LTI and ZTI scenarios to use the same WDS server to PXE boot by changing the provider order in the registry :



  4. Restart the WDS Service.

  5. If the DHCP server is located on a different box – you can do two things:
    a) Authorize the WDS Server in DHCP and set up an IP Helper to the WDS Server
    b) Set up the DHCP Scope Options to redirect to the WDS Server as below:

  6. Clients will PXE boot to the ConfigMgr PXE Service Point (ZTI) unless configured otherwise. To configure a client to PXE boot to the Image Build environment (LTI) use the following command to add the reference machine to the WDS database:
    wdsutil /add-device /device:<computername> /ID:00-00-00-00-00-00 
    (where 00-00-00-00-00-00 is the Mac address of the reference machine)

  7. To re-configure clients to PXE boot to the ConfigMgr service Point (ZTI) remove the machine account from the ConfigMgr DB or from Active Directory.

(It is not recommended to build your reference images attached to the enterprise network as the reference operating system task sequence still needs to patch the deployment with the latest updates during the process.

This post was contributed by Aly Shivji, an Architect with the Datacenter & Private Cloud Center of Excellence in Microsoft Services

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