Installation (Remote Installation Services)
is very straight forward; it encompasses a wide range of options, as a
server can take many different roles in your organization.
In this section I will outline how Windows Whistler handles basic
installations of the system and some of the more advanced unattended
options that Whistler now has.
There will be sections later in the article that outline how server
configuration is done after the system is installed.
you have ever set up a Windows 2000 Server, then you will not see that
By default, Whistler installs as a basic Network Server, just as it
did in Windows 2000.
The only thing that is different is the additional components.
The process of adding these additional components is the same as in
previous versions of Windows, Microsoft gave you the ability to create
unattended installations of the Server versions using unattended answer
files, and when Windows 2000 debuted, RIS came into existence.
Essentially, RIS is one of the major components of Intellimirror.
RIS in Windows 2000 allowed an administrator to create pre-packaged
versions of Windows 2000
Professional to deploy to clients with minimal administrative
was nice, for client deployments, but deploying a Server was not an option
for RIS in Windows 2000.
In Whistler, Microsoft has addressed this issue and promises that
they can deploy a server just as easily and quickly as it takes to deploy
a client using RIS.
RIS to run properly in your environment there are some things that have to
be running in your environment.
There are specifically three things that need to be running, DNS,
Active Directory, and DHCP.
Active Directory is required because you must authenticate with a
Domain Controller to begin a RIS installation.
You must also have a place to store the newly created computer
account in the domain.
Active Directory is also responsible for keeping track of which
servers are valid DHCP Servers and RIS Servers, because both have to be Authorized
in Active Directory before they can start responding to client requests.
DNS is required because Active Directory requires DNS.
DHCP is required because each client requires an IP Address to
communicate with a RIS Server.
After the Remote
Installation Service has been installed and configured on your Server, you
can create answer files and associate them with the images to further
automate the process. There
are two ways to create answer files, through a common text editor, like
Notepad, or by using the Setup Manager Utility.
The Setup Manager utility can be found on Windows Whistler CD Rom
in the Support/Tools folder. There
is a CAB file there called deploy.cab.
Extract its contents to a folder somewhere on your computer.
Once extraction has completed, execute the setupmgr.exe
file and the application will start.
Setup Manager creates answer files with a GUI interface.
SIF files are generated for RIS installations.
After the file has been generated, you can edit it with Notepad to
get more specific on what you want the answer file to automate.
Some ones of interest are:
In the [Unattended]
If you want to apply a SIF file to a RIS Server, you have to go into Active Directory Users and Computers to do so. Once there, you have to navigate to the Server that you have designated as the RIS server and go to its properties. Select the Remote Install tab and click the Advanced Settings button. Go to the Images tab and click Add, then follow the on-screen directions. After you finish the wizard, you will see all of the customized images on your machine. The screenshot below shows all of this.