Simulate a Windows 10 deployment in a test environment

This topic will walk you through the process of creating a simulated environment on which to test your Windows 10 deployment using MDT. When working with advanced settings and rules, especially those like database calls, it is most efficient to be able to test the settings without having to run through a complete deployment. Luckily, MDT enables you to perform a simulated deployment by running the Gather process by itself. The simulation works best when you are using a domain-joined client.

Test environment

Simulate deployment

On PC0001:

  1. Sign as contoso\Administrator.

  2. Copy the following to a PowerShell script named gather.ps1 and copy it to a directory named C:\MDT on PC0001.

    # Check for elevation
    If (-NOT ([Security.Principal.WindowsPrincipal] [Security.Principal.WindowsIdentity]::GetCurrent()).IsInRole(`
        [Security.Principal.WindowsBuiltInRole] "Administrator"))
        Write-Warning "Oupps, you need to run this script from an elevated PowerShell prompt!`nPlease start the PowerShell prompt as an Administrator and re-run the script."
        Write-Warning "Aborting script..."
    if (Test-Path -Path "C:\MININT") {Write-Host "C:\MININT exists, deleting...";Remove-Item C:\MININT -Recurse}
    cscript.exe ZTIGather.wsf /debug:true
    # Optional, comment out if you want the script to open the log in CMTrace
  3. Download and install the free Microsoft System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager Toolkit on PC0001 so that you have access to the Configuration Manager Trace (cmtrace.exe) tool.

  4. Using Local Users and Groups (lusrmgr.msc), add the contoso\MDT_BA user account to the local Administrators group.

  5. Sign off, and then sign on to PC0001 as contoso\MDT_BA.

  6. Open the \\MDT01\MDTProduction$\Scripts folder and copy the following files to C:\MDT:

    1. ZTIDataAccess.vbs
    2. ZTIGather.wsf
    3. ZTIGather.xml
    4. ZTIUtility.vbs
  7. From the \\MDT01\MDTProduction$\Control folder, copy the CustomSettings.ini file to C:\MDT.

  8. In the C:\MDT folder, create a subfolder named X64.

  9. From the \\MDT01\MDTProduction$\Tools\X64 folder, copy the Microsoft.BDD.Utility.dll file to C:\MDT\X64.


    The C:\MDT folder with the files added for the simulation environment.

  10. Type the following at an elevated Windows PowerShell prompt:

    Set-ExecutionPolicy -ExecutionPolicy Unrestricted -Scope Process -Force
    Set-Location C:\MDT

    When prompted, press R to run the gather script.

  11. Review the ZTIGather.log in the C:\MININT\SMSOSD\OSDLOGS folder using CMTrace. Note
    Warnings or errors with regard to the Wizard.hta are expected. If the log file looks okay, you are ready to try a real deployment.


The ZTIGather.log file from PC0001.

Set up MDT for BitLocker
Configure MDT deployment share rules
Configure MDT for UserExit scripts
Use the MDT database to stage Windows 10 deployment information
Assign applications using roles in MDT
Use web services in MDT
Use Orchestrator runbooks with MDT