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Cloning with Symantec Ghost and PXE

By Arito
Dec 20, 2005
  1. I've started recently working in a youth schooling department and although I'm working as a trainer I'm also reponsible for techical support as a secondary job.

    The problem has been that the operation systems of the desktops that the students use have to be re-installed quite often (optimally once a week) and it's a lot of extra work.
    I just discovered that we have licenses of Symantec Ghost Corporate Edition 8.2 and 3Com Boot Services for almost every (11/12) client desktop so it could potentially reduce greatly my workload as a tech support.

    I've tried to use Ghost for two weeks and I'm still having problems with pushing an image to desktops.

    Method 1: Ghost Console
    First I set-up a model computer and took an image. I've created a pxe boot disk and distributed it with (3com) tftp and pxe servers. The clients get the boot disks, but they can't connect with the server. The reason is that when I start an "image push" task in Ghost Console it then starts GhostCast server and names the session as 'Servername'Push* (*=rolling number). If I wan't the pxe-boot disk to connect automatically to the server I have to add -ja='sessionname' switch. Is it possible to change the session name? Because now the GhostCast session name is always different, because of the rolling number, which means I should always create a new boot disk for every new session.

    Method 2: GhostCast
    I've also tried the cloning with GhostCast server, without using the Ghost Console (which ables me to name the session), but then the problem is SysPrep. The image that I'm using is from a 'model computer' so it doesn't work if I just push it to ten other computers (computer names, sids...). So how is it possible to use SysPrep with GhostCast? With Ghost Console it's possible to automate SysPrep.

    I'dont know if I'm close to solve this or doing it totally wrong. If you know a website that gives good (preferably easy step-by-step) instructions to cloning with Ghost and PXE or you know how to do it, please help me :)
    Symantec apparently doesn't offer free support for Corporate edition and we as a public department don't have money to spend (That's why I'm doing this on my holiday...), so I'm would much appreciate any free help I could get.
     
  2. LNCPapa

    LNCPapa TS Special Forces Posts: 4,333   +278

    Try using Ghost Console via installing the ghost client on your image. That way you can initiate the ghosting process from your ghost console server. To do this install the ghost client (located on your ghost corporate cd) on your base image before capture - during the install it will ask you what the name of your ghost server is. I hope it is a static machine - would kinda have to be if you registered the console.

    Also, sysprep your machine just before you capture. Before rebooting the machine and letting sysprep finish capture the image. Your captured image will then finish up the sysprep process once the image is dropped on your target machines. Lemme know if you have any other questions about ghost - I use it daily at work.
     
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