How to Deploy an Operating System Image using PXE
Applies To: System Center Configuration Manager 2007, System Center Configuration Manager 2007 R2, System Center Configuration Manager 2007 R3, System Center Configuration Manager 2007 SP1, System Center Configuration Manager 2007 SP2
You can use the pre-boot execution environment (PXE) to initiate operating system deployments to computers and servers that are known by the Configuration Manager 2007 environment.
PXE is used to initiate the operating system installation. The PXE service point site system will respond to PXE requests from computers on the network and then work with the Configuration Manager 2007 environment to determine the next appropriate action to take. For new operating system deployments the first step is usually to download a version of Windows PE to the target computer.
By default, when you create the PXE service point an associated distribution point is also created with a network share called SMSPXEIMAGES$. This network share contains the boot images and must be accessible by the target computers. You should only add boot images that will be used as part of your PXE initiated deployment to this share. You must also add the boot images to the PXE service point before you add them to a standard distribution point so the logged in administrator will have access to the associated files.
You will need at least one boot image for each type of processor architecture present in your Configuration Manager 2007 environment on the distribution point. For example, if you have computers with x64 processors in your environment you will need at least one x64 boot image assigned to the PXE distribution point even if you only plan to deploy x86 operating systems. This is because PXE stub needs some of the native files contained in the boot image to identify the computer before the task sequence can be started.
Any boot image that is referenced by an operating system deployment task sequence must reside on a PXE distribution point and a standard distribution point accessible by the target computer. For example; if you advertise a task sequence that contains an x86 boot image and the target computer has an x64 chip architecture you must have an x86 and x64 boot image available on the PXE distribution point. Because the task sequence contains an x86 boot image, in order for the x64 target computer to initiate the task sequence you must copy an x86 boot image to an accessible standard distribution point. The x86 boot image will be used to initiate the task sequence and the target computer will then download the correct boot image version from the location on the PXE distribution point.
To use PXE to initiate operating system deployments you must have a PXE service point site role installed and configured properly. For more information about setting up the PXE service point site role, click the following link: How to Configure the PXE Service Point
Use the following procedure to deploy an operating system using PXE:
To Deploy an Operating System using PXE
Import the target computer information and assign the computer to a Configuration Manager 2007 collection. For more information about importing new computers into Configuration Manager 2007 see: How to Add a New Computer to the Configuration Manager Database
In the Configuration Manager console, navigate to System CenterConfiguration Manager / Site Database / Site Management / <site code> - <site name> / Site Settings / Site Systems.
Establish the Configuration Manager 2007 PXE service point site role. For more information about creating the PXE service point site role see: How to Configure the PXE Service Point.
Create and advertise the PXE operating system deployment task sequence to the target collection or device. You can assign a mandatory or optional advertisement. If you specify an optional advertisement there must be a user present to PXE boot the computer. You can only assign one mandatory advertisement to a target computer and you must specify the time when the mandatory advertisement should be run.
To initiate the operating system image installation, you must configure the target computer BIOS to PXE boot. PXE boot the target computer. For mandatory PXE advertisements the computer will automatically boot using PXE. For optional advertisements there must be a user present to PXE boot the computer.
If you have specified that no password is required to establish the connection to the PXE service point, PXE boot the computer to initiate the operating system deployment.
For additional security, you can assign a password to establish a connection to the PXE service point. If you have specified that a password is required to establish a connection to the PXE service point, PXE boot the computer to initiate the operating system deployment and enter the password. For the operating system deployment to continue the password must be entered at the Configuration Manager 2007 client computer or the task sequence will not run.
If you are using the English version of Windows PE and communicating with a Configuration Manager 2007 site server running a double byte character set you should assign a password containing only simple characters or not require a password for PXE initiated deployments.
Configuration Manager 2007 will connect to the assigned management point and retrieve the assigned policy and complete the operating system deployment.
For additional information, see Configuration Manager 2007 Information and Support.
To contact the documentation team, email SMSdocs@microsoft.com.