Kind of a stupid question here - but thought I'd ask anyways.


We have 1500 new Dell Optiplex 390 machines with the external wifi antenna box/adapter. Some of our school labs have these machines in it now, and we're making the labs wireless. I know we'll be able to remotely push apps and scripts through KACE, but is there a way to image machines over it? It's not possible to get the wifi adapters to work with a PXE boot, but is there a way to boot them into KACE via a CD or USB boot image, and have wifi drivers & WPA2/network info baked in? Our whole district will be on these machines next year, and they plan on buying more wireless ones since it'll be cheaper than wiring new areas of the building.

Any help is appreciate, or suggestions for that matter (and I'd love to have gigabit drops everywhere - but the state is broke, and it's not in our budget).

Thanks!
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usb image certainly could work if you have the right drivers in the kbe drivers directory, recache and create a new kbe.

Corey
Answered 01/17/2012 by: cserrins
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It should be possibe but you can read about some of the challenges, if it support vPro then it *should* be possible as I understand
http://www.intel.com/technology/itj/2008/v12i4/5-paper/5-streaming-clients.htm
...However, OS streaming (or PXE in Wireless) Wi-Fi networks continue to be a challenge. A wireless PXE solution has never been deployed in enterprises, because of the following significant challenges:
  1. Most Wi-Fi network cards do not have sufficient flash memory space to store the PXE OP-ROM and WLAN driver code needed to support wireless PXE. The WLAN driver is relatively large to be part of the BIOS code as well.
  2. The secure configuration/provisioning of the Wi-Fi 802.11i Security Profile, to enable a WLAN connection, is not a trivial undertaking.
  3. There remain many open issues related to ownership and synchronization of the Wi-Fi communication channel between the host OS and BIOS/firmware in the NIC, similar to the issues described earlier for a wired 802.1x channel (see Figure 2).
Answered 01/18/2012 by: rmeyer
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Thanks for the info. I know this sounds stupid, but if we put drivers into the kbe folder, how do we tell it to connect to the wireless network automatically upon booting via USB?
Answered 01/18/2012 by: sfigg
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hmm I'm not sure about that acually

The way you do it via vPro is via Certificates that is stored in the vPro hardware chip, so it's done on a hardware level, but I don't know if you can add the driver to the KPE and then get some software to control what WIFI to connect to in WinPE or if you can add the wireless info (SSID/Key/etc) directly in the driver files somehow, but I supose it is possible, but I don't think it's "easy"
Answered 01/19/2012 by: rmeyer
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Hmmm. Well I have a script to join the wifi network that should work in a PE Environment....but dont know how to edit the KBE environment to add that script & 1 file to the startup. Any ideas?
Answered 01/19/2012 by: sfigg
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hmm good question, I'm not sure it is possible I would try to open a support ticket for that request, you might need some special work done for that from KACE
Answered 01/20/2012 by: rmeyer
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sfigg you will be able to do this with kbe manipulator, a 3.4 add-on tool that will be available from kb article 1125.
You can store the script in petemp, then add a commandline to call the script.

Can you share the script?
Answered 01/29/2012 by: cserrins
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