In order to successfully deploy the Microsoft Surface Pro 3 with SmartDeploy, you'll need to use SmartDeploy version 1.1.5010 or later.
Additionally, this UEFI Class 3 device automatically adds a BCD firmware entry for any present bootable USB media on each boot. This means that even with the UEFI "Alternate System Boot Order" set to "SSD Only", the machine will still boot to a bootable USB device on each boot.
Therefore when deploying the machine via offline USB media, the machine wou
If you are using VMware virtualization products to build reference computers with SmartDeploy, and you want to create a Windows 8.1 or Windows Server 2012 R2 image, you'll need to follow these instructions.
Through testing, we have noticed inconsistent shut down results from within VMware products. When using the Capture Wizard to subsequently capture an image of that machine, the resultant image file does not contain full metadata. If you then attempt to deploy this image, it will result in th
In SmartDeploy Version 1.1.1980 we have added additional regional setting support to the Language/Culture drop down in the Deploy Wizard, as well as an advanced answer file change for more granular control.
Additional Language/Culture Listings:
In previous versions of SmartDeploy we only had Language/Culture support for the main language packs and language interface packs offered by Microsoft. This led to some confusion when wanting to use a specific language, say English, with a stand
With the recent release of Windows 8 we have had a number of inquires about Windows 8 deployment support in SmartDeploy Enterprise. To group some of those questions and corresponding answer together, I wanted to add a brief information entry about SmartDeploy Enterprise and Windows 8.
The Windows 8 Deployment Process
To jump right in and address the main question, "does SmartDeploy support deploying Windows 8?". I am happy to say that with the release of SmartDeploy Enterprise Version 1.1.198
Microsoft is doing some pretty cool things within Windows 8 to allow you to Refresh and reset your PC to a known good starting point. This should be a much cleaner WinRE implementation than the PC Manufacture's implementations with Windows 7. It also appears to have given us USMT Hard-Link Migration for the masses.
In this related article, talking about improvements in Windows Setup, and more specifically about the new web based purchase/download/upgrade process... they mention the following:
SmartDeploy Version 1.1.1950 is now available for download from SmartDeploy.com. The new release contains some customer bug fixes as well as a new Capture Wizard that is developed in Silverlight.
Some notable fixes are listed below:
Media Wizard - Update to how USB media is built. As an initial requirement for the Media Wizard we made the product to be nondestructive when using USB media. This was mainly to protect user data in the event that the wrong USB drive was used. This behavior has ch
An update to SmartDeploy Enterprise is now available for download!
For SmartDeploy Enterprise version 1940 we have release a few new features as well as addressed a few customer bugs. Please see the lists below for further information on both.
Build Wizard: The Build Wizard is a new application that is installed with SmartDeploy Enterprise to aid in the creation of a virtual reference machine. Build Wizard can create a VM for VMware Workstation and Player, Windows
SmartDeploy 1.1.1920 introduced a new feature that allows the user to create an automated answer file with ease. In this short blog I’m going to explain how this new feature works.
1. Boot to SmartPE and select Deploy an image.
2. Select Next to proceed to the Welcome to the Deploy Wizard page.
3. Proceed through the Deploy Wizard as you normally would, and proceed to the Summary page.
4. To create an unattended installation, please check For use as an unattended installation. This opti
Here is a list of some of the changes and enhancements in the SmartDeploy 1.1.1920 release.
1803: Ensured all Deploy Wizard, Advanced Options, System Properties work properly.
1812: Allow for multiple Domain's & OU's in answer files
1813: Fixed crash when selecting an image file for deployment that was being copied to
1819: Added messaging if attempting to capture Virtual Box with guest additions installed
1849: Fixed post image task pointing to a missing file
In SmartDeploy version 1920 we have added the feature to list multiple domains and OUs in an answer file. You can then choose from this list during deployment. I am going to take a minute to explain how to set this up with an existing answer file.
By default when specifying a domain and exporting the answer file you will get something that looks like this:
<!-- 0 = Domain, 1 = Workgroup -->
SmartDeploy stores the device drivers for Windows PE in the platform pack for a given model, where necessary. This is to help easily facilitate creating boot or deployment media that supports the network and mass storage for that device.
SmartDeploy versions prior to 1.1.1910:
---Windows PE 2.1
We only add Windows PE drivers if necessary for a given model. This is because many models are covered for both
Now that the latest version of SmartDeploy Enterprise has been release I want to take some time and talk about a few of the bugs that have been addressed in this version. Below you will find a list of bugs, a brief description and the action that was taken. In addition to the bug fixes below version 1910 also underwent a major update from a boot media perspective. Allen talks more about this update in his blog titled SmartDeploy 1.1.1910 Platform Pack Information.
Media Wizard Error 76 "Path
The SmartDeploy Media Wizard enables you to quickly build boot media that includes a custom answer file. When you create boot media with an answer file it is stored at the root of your SmartPE media (CD or USB) as SmartDeploy.xml. This answer file has several important items that you may want to modify on the fly including:
.WIM file being deployed
Platform Pack (.ppk) being selected
Windows Deployment Services (WDS) compatible image files are a good companion for a custom answer file
Here are some handy logs and locations to check out if you run into any deployment issues.
You can always view the following logs in: C:\Windows\Debug
- Deploy.log is created by SmartDeploy Enterprise and will show you deployment errors that may have occurred with SmartDeploy.
- Netseteup.log will show any issues with the deployed machine joining the domain.
If you are running windows 7, the windows setup logs are located in C:\Windows\Panther
If you are having issues with drivers on your
SmartDeploy now fully supports OS image capture for deployment using Microsoft's Windows Deployment Services (WDS). Devon's blog does an excellent job of over-viewing the process to capture a WDS compatible SmatDeploy image file. The process is wizard-driven and truly extends the capability of the product.
In a large computer lab settings, it is very desirable for you to be able to automate the deployment wizard using an answer file. For example, some of the large labs I support include up
One feature that I have started to utilize in SmartDeploy Enterprise is differencing images. This technology is currently available for you to reduce your image development time, decrease the amount of space required for OS image storage, and improve the change management process of 'certifying' OS images in your IT organization. A simple way to think about differencing images is that they represent only the changes (delta) between image ‘A’ and image ‘B.’ Most IT shops have at least a dozen
We all need some time saving tips. I want to share a couple of time saving tips that I have developed while working with Smart Deployment Enterprise. The tips alone are not revolutionary, but they are valuable and will help new SDE adopters get even more out of an already valuable imaging suite.
Part of being super efficient in image development is to use a virtual reference computer for gathering your base image (see my earlier post and Devon's post on creating a reference VM). I have a
So you have installed SmartDeploy Enterpise, and are ready to capture your first WIM? Great!
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to capture a virtual machine and turn it into WIM (Windows Imaging Format) using SmartDeploy.
1. Open the Capture Wizard by going to Start– All Programs – SmartDeploy – SmartDeploy Enterprise – Capture Wizard.
2. Select Next on the Welcome to the Capture Wizard page to proceed to the Virtual Hard Disk page.
3. Select Browse and browse to your virtual disk fi
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to create offline deployment media for SmartDeploy Enterprise. Following these steps will quickly get you a basic offline deployment CD/DVD.
1. Open the Media Wizard by selecting Start – All Programs – SmartDeploy – SmartDeploy Enterprise – Media Wizard.
2. Select Next to proceed to the Select Task page
3. Select Create offline deployment media. This option allows you to create offline deployment media containing all components required to boot and deplo
For years people have struggled with the best way to capture and share dialog boxes or other objects they see on their computer screen.
The old tried and true method: PrtScn & Alt+PrtScn
The PrtScn button by default captures the entire desktop, and using Alt+PrtScn captures only the active window on the desktop. This is a good start to get what you want captured. You can then open the Microsoft Paint application (mspaint) and paste in what you have captured. The trick here is to ma
In a follow-on to my previous “Windows 7, BitLocker and Recovery” blog, I was wondering what would happen if you installed Windows 7 to an existing partition so that you ended up with a single partition instead of two, and then ran the BitLocker wizard. Or, if you made a 300MB active partition in the beginning of the disk and then told Windows setup to install to the free space.
In the “Hardware requirements for BitLocker Drive Encryption” section of the Windows 7 Help and Support, it state
Windows 7 has greatly improved and simplified the process of setting up BitLocker and the Windows Recovery Environment. In fact both the separate partition structure required for BitLocker, and the automatic failover to the Windows Recovery Environment are setup by default in Windows 7. With Windows Vista neither of these were setup up by default. With Windows Vista the guidance from Microsoft was to create a 1.5GB system partition for BitLocker, and this is exactly what the BitLocker Drive Prep
For years, IT departments have been searching for a method to maintain a perfected Operating System image which can be quickly and easily deployed to the majority of the computer models supported throughout the organization. This 'golden image' should contain all the necessary OEM drivers for the hardware to work without any secondary steps to manipulate the device manager or otherwise update drivers after the initial image deployment. I have personally experienced high levels of frustration