Systems Deployment Question


06/20/2012 4264 views

Following instructions for K-Image installer for usb flash drive: When performing step 3 nothing seems to copied to the usb drive. When I try to use the usb drive to install it is still going to the K2000 on my network to get the image for installation. It did go through and copy the image somewhere. I am sure I used the correct drive letter. Do I need a : or a switch -? Some info I read online tells me that using the usb installer I still need DHCP to get back to the K2000 appliance - doesn't this defeat the purpose? I want to install from usb with out a network connection! Please advise.

the cmd used was: install.bat M

Instructions followed:
Install K-image to USB flash drive: Download K-image archive from this page Unzip the downloaded ZIP archive and run install.bat <usb_drive> from the command line, where usb_drive is the drive letter for the USB flash drive.

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Community Chosen Answer


I worked with the USB images quite a bit.  Here are the instructions I created:

  • In the KACE 2000, go to the Deployments->System Images tab.

Open the appropriate image.

Click on Create bootable USB flash drive image for this System Image

  • A background process will be launched to build the installer for the system image. It will take an hour or two.
  • If the image is finished downloading, this page will contain the download link and instructions

Click on the Boot Environments tab.

Open the appropriate boot environment.

Check the box for Create bootable USB flash drive image for this System Image

  • A background process will be launched to build the installer for the KBE image. This should only take a few minutes.

Once the image has been created, you will be able to click on Download bootable USB flash drive image for this Boot Environment.

  • When the KBE image is finished downloading, unzip it. If it is on a server, download it to your local machine.

Open My Computer and find the drive letter for the target flash drive.

Open an administrative command prompt.

Change directories to where you unzipped the KBE image.

install.exe <USB drive letter>:

Choose the correct drive from the drop down menu and start

  • This will format the flash drive.
  • If you point it at your hard drive, it will format your hard drive. Check your drive letter.
  • This will likely change the assigned drive letter for the flash drive.

Download the System Image when it completes building. If it is on a server, download it to your local machine.

Unzip the System Image with Winzip or 7zip only. The built-in Windows decompress may corrupt an image over 4 GB in size.

In the administrative command prompt, change directories to where you unzipped the System Image.

Open My Computer and find the drive letter for the target flash drive. It will likely have changed since being formatted!

install.bat <USB drive letter>:

Allow the System Image to install on the flash drive.

The USB key is now ready. For a small amount of additional saftey, you can make the files read-only.

  • Open the USB key in explorer.
  • Select all the folders, right-click, and choose properties.
  • Select the Read-Only checkbox and click apply.
Answered 06/21/2012 by: philologist
Red Belt

  • Additionally, it should not reach out to your K2K. It does need a DHCP address so it can start the network connection if part of your install tasks include uploading to the K2K, or downloading files from servers on your network. It doesn't need to talk to the K2K in order to deploy the image; Windows PE and the image are both installed on the USB key.
  • Thank you, I am starting over and am waiting now for the image to copy to the usb drive... I will report back after I try out the result. My usb drive is letter M. After the lengthy process completes I have three folders (boot-14.6MB, efi-11.6MB, sources-148MB) and one file (bootmgr-375KB) . Also noted - inside the system_image_53 is a new folder named M with a size of 8.3GB. It appears that the image was copied into the M folder within my unzipped system_image_53 folder on my hard drive. This does not seem to be working right!
  • Here is the content of the install.bat from the unzipped K-image:
    @if [%1]==[] ( echo usage: install.bat [drive_letter] && exit /b )
    mkdir %1\KACE
    xcopy /y /f /s /h /e files\* %1\KACE\
    mkdir %1\KACE\hashstore
    xcopy /y /f /s /h /e hashstore\* %1\KACE\hashstore\
    @echo Completed.
    Why did it copy this stuff into the folder where the install.bat is located and not onto the usb drive M?
    I am copying the KACE folder onto my usb drive M since it looks like that is where it was supposed to be copied in the bat file.
  • Interestingly, the site is stripping out the two important lines for you from my instructions. I'll send something in. Make sure you use install.bat M: rather than just install.bat M, and install.exe M: rather than just install.exe M.
  • My installation erased my usb drive when running the scripts! - I am using the method for installing 2 partitions for Win7 so you retain the 100mb system partition. After a lengthy time - with a usb boot I get an error telling that it cannot find the path specified. It looks klike it formatted my usb drive. I am trying to use the same preinstall and post install tasks that I use when imaging from the K2000 box.
  • I will try again - I have gotten almost no response from the KACE support Ticketing system - I thought that they were there to help paying customers???
  • If you are formatting the USB drive, you need to adjust your diskpart instructions. There are two common reasons to see issues with diskpart and the USB keys. The first issue is that the CDRom will get in the way. The second is that you are starting with a single partition, so your deployment sees the USB key as the second partition and happily wipes it. Try the following, though you will need to make sure you are assigning the right drive letters (I have to reverse the drive letter assignments):

    select volume d
    assign letter=q
    select disk 0
    create partition primary size=100
    select partition=1
    format fs=ntfs quick
    assign letter=d
    select disk 0
    create partition primary
    select partition=2
    format fs=ntfs quick
    assign letter=c
  • http://support.microsoft.com/kb/300415 has information on the diskpart commands.
  • Basically, the idea is to move the CDROM out of the way, and to make sure you have the correct disk selected. The other thing I have seen happen is that if you don't have appropriate drivers for your hard drive, or if you forget to put a hard drive in the machine, the USB key will be disk 0. ; ) It took me a little while to figure out why my help desk was giving me back "broken" USB keys that had been formatted when they didn't have the disk drive properly connected.
  • Looks like my pre/post install tasks are correct only for being used from a PXE network boot and not for a USB boot. I would think that KACE would have instructions to deal with this and provide a help doc that would address the issue. It seems like a common need for anyone doing USB boot imaging.
  • The PXE network boot is a bit simpler, yes. In terms of KACE providing instructions, I think for them the USB deployment is considered the last resort deployment method. I did have to work through a few things like this in the early going, but in general the USB deployment works very well. If you think it would help, maybe I can convert some of this into a blog entry.
  • If it helps, I do use the same pre- and post-install tasks for both PXE and USB deployment. The diskpart script was really the big thing I needed to adjust, and it still works for the PXE deployment as well.

All Answers


The only way I got a usb install to work was:

1. create a bootable usb drive with the kace utility

2. copied the wiak winpe.wim file from C:\Program Files\Windows AIK\Tools\PETools\x86 or amd64 to my desktop.  edit the file and add imagex.exe and startnet.cmd to it. commit changes and reseal the wim.

3. replace the boot.wim on the usb with this.

4. deployed the image I wanted to cast to mylab test machine did not reboot.  captured that deployment as a wim file (the c:\kace files are there so your post tasks will run.)

5. copied that wim to the usb driive

6. booted remote computer and manually cleaned and created partition, used imagex to deploy wim, ran the bcdedit commands in the mid task "wim-win7 mbr" and rebooted when done.  the post tasks completed and came up like a normal deployment.

Answered 06/21/2012 by: SMal.tmcc
Red Belt

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