Capturing XPe for SCCM Deployment

From Windows Embedded Standard 2009 (WES 2009) the product shipped with Sysprep which allowed you to capture images using SCCM to deploy. But what do you do for previous versions such as XP?

I have been working on an interesting problem which a customer of mine experienced around capturing images to use for OSD in the upcoming SCCM 2012. The problem is the customer is not yet ready to upgrade their thin clients to WES 2009 or later. This means the product doesn’t ship with sysprep so we cannot use it to prepare the machine for deployment.

Once was I suggetsed to get around this was to use WAIK to create a custom boot image which included ImageX to allow us to capture the image. To keep it fairly light touch as well I created a task sequence which included did the following:

  1. Run fbreseal.exe (this reboots the machine when completed)
  2. Boot into our custom PE image using the task sequence
  3. Instruct the task sequence to run the command to execute and capture an image with imagex.exe
  4. Import this image into SCCM and then deploy as normal

This was at this point a pure theory but after testing it seems to work fine. I also tested this in SCCM 2012 and it also seemed to work pretty well. Nothing different from a standard deployment.

Thought it would be useful to share, any comments or queries please let me know. Happy Thin Client Deploying!

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About Martyn

Martyn is one of the Senior Cloud Architects and DevOps Team Leader at one of the worlds leading Cloud Transformation Specialists Inframon. Martyn is responsible for the architecture of some of the largest Azure deployments in EMEA and is a advisor to a many businesses on their strategies. Martyn is a regular speaker at Microsoft events and community events on Azure and DevOps, giving his insight to a growing number of audiences.

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