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Creating a windows image for replication

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#1 game_over


    Just below average Joe

  • Tech Issues Solved: 1
  • Joined: 07-May 04
  • Location: England

Posted 20 May 2014 - 10:39

The time has come for me to re-image a group of machines and i'll looking for the most efficient way of doing it... a few year a go i tried making a 'master image' from one computer that in theory should have been able to use on all other machines... unfortunately i could never get it working, install always failed or i ran into various other issues and i realised it would be much quicker to work on each machine manually.


I would like to have another go creating an image but before i spend days running in circles i'm looking for any advice, helps or tips anyone can give me.


I am wanting to install Windows 7 x64, silent install, slipstreamed with all updates, have various registry settings in place, preferably have it join a domain without much interaction, install some printers/drivers etc.. basically i want a base machine that will just work that can be distributed with little human interaction.. once it's on the domain i can push out other apps through the group policy.

#2 +i11usive


    Neowinian Senior

  • Joined: 28-November 06
  • OS: Windows 8.1
  • Phone: Galaxy S6 Edge

Posted 20 May 2014 - 10:42

Have a run through the following:



#3 Grayski



  • Joined: 10-November 06
  • Location: Wales - UK

Posted 20 May 2014 - 10:55

A good tutorial that got me started was http://www.danscours...-windowspe.html

There is also: http://www.windowsne...ws-7-Part1.html

#4 TPreston


    e pluribus unum

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  • Location: Ireland
  • OS: Windows 8.1 Enterprise & Server 2012R2/08R2 Datacenter
  • Phone: Nokia Lumia 1520

Posted 20 May 2014 - 13:14

  once it's on the domain i can push out other apps through the group policy.

While that's a lot easier to update it does use a lot more resources and time for larger programs like Office and Adobe.


The basic process for creating an image is


  1. Install windows in a vm
  2. install all your programs and updates
  3. Make sure you are using local group policy instead of regedit as any changes to HKEY_CURRENT_USER will be ignored (as the current user is deleted)
  4. sysprep and shutdown
  5. boot from the windows cd and press shift+f10
  6. Dism /Capture-Image /ImageFile:c:\goldimage.wim /CaptureDir:C:\ /Name:"goldimage" where c:\ is wherever your os drive is mounted
  7. add the .wim to WDS or replace the install.wim on a bootable usb key

WDS gives you a GUi to do all this with a capture image but you can do it without a domain or wds

#5 Gotenks98



  • Tech Issues Solved: 2
  • Joined: 18-December 01

Posted 22 May 2014 - 02:01

MDT 2013 can do all of this for you. You might have to check out a few youtube videos to see how it works but it does well.