How To: Troubleshoot Netboot for Mac Provisioning

Version 10

    Verified Product Versions

    Endpoint Manager 9.6Endpoint Manager 2016.x



    Occasionally problems are encountered when trying to NetBoot Mac clients so that they can Provisioned. This may affect certain models, or you may not be able to boot any device. The following steps are intended to help in the investigation to determine the cause of the failure. Also important to be aware of is that NBI's are not universal, certain NBI files will only support specific versions of the Mac Hardware. For this reason it is always recommended that you build your NBI on a system running the absolute latest version of OS X, with all the latest patches. If possible, you should also use the newest piece of Mac Hardware you have available.



    Investigation Steps


    Verify your NetBoot Image Mappings are Correct in the LANDESK Console


    1. In the Management Suite Console go to Tools - Provisioning - OS Provisioning.
    2. In the OS Provisioning toolbar click, Preboot and select Manage NetBoot Image Mappings from the list. This will open the Mac NetBoot Image Mappings Tool.
      Screen Shot 2016-04-19 at 2.47.34 PM.png
    3. With this window open verify that the Server has the correct path listed for clients to use to access the NBI when booting.
    4. Verify the correct Default Image is selected.
    5. Verify that each model in the list is set to either Default Image, or to use the correct NBI for that specific model.
    6. Click OK.



    Verify the NBI Supports the Version of Mac Hardware You are Attempting to NetBoot


    1. On a mac client double click on the NBI file, this will open a Finder window showing the contents of the NBI.
    2. When opening the NBI you will usually see two files and a folder.
      Screen Shot 2016-04-18 at 10.59.05 AM.png
    3. Select and open the NBImageInfo.plist in TextEdit. In this PLIST you will see a list of the versions of the Mac Hardware that your particular NBI will support.
      Screen Shot 2016-04-18 at 11.06.25 AM.png
    4. Once you have located this list in the PLIST file we need to verify the version of the Mac Hardware so that we can compare.
      1. On the target Mac, in the top left corner click the Apple Logo, and select "About This Mac"
      2. Click the "System Report" option.
      3. The default view that opens initially should display the Mac Hardware information.
        Screen Shot 2016-04-18 at 11.10.58 AM.png
      4. On the "Model Identifier" line you can see the the Mac Hardware Version number. In this case it is a "MacBookPro11,3"
    5. The version must be displayed in both the PLIST and the System Report to confirm that the NBI should support that version.
    6. If a version of your hardware is not supported you need to build a new NBI. Please ensure that you build the NBI on the latest version of OS X with all patches installed. Also if you can use the latest version of the Mac Hardware you have available will help as well.


    Once we have confirmed the NBI is capable of booting that revision of the Mac Hardware we need to determine where in the boot process the client is failing. Please work through these steps as far as you are able to, and gather any details you can as they will be helpful for LANDESK Support to assist in determining the cause of the problem.

    If you do not see the option for LDNetboot in the boot menu:

      1. Uninstall the PXE Rep, and LANDESK Agent from the machine. Reboot and deploy the Agent, Reboot, and Install the PXE Rep again.
      2. Build a new NBI. If you are having trouble with a specific model, build the NBI on that particular device.
        1. Install the latest supported version of OS X with all the latest updates.
        1. Install an up-to-date LANDESK Agent on the machine.
        2. Download the latest installer for OS X from the App Store.
          1. The NBI being built and the machine its being built on need to be the same version of OS X.
        3. Download the latest LANDESK Stamper Utility from the LANDESK Community.
          1. Mac OS X Provisioning Guide
          2. This utility is updated very from time to time, so make sure to download it fresh.
        4. Build and try booting to your new Apple NBI following Apple’s process of using the System Image Utility. DO NOT USE THE LANDESK STAMPER AT THIS POINT.
          1. Follow the steps detailed in the Mac Provisioning Guide: Step-by-Step Process, Including Videos, for OS X Provisioning in LANDESK Management Suite 2016
          2. Try booting to this NBI without first stamping it with LANDESK. If this fails, the problem is on the Apple side of the process and not the LANDESK. This is important to find out so that we can make sure to troubleshoot the problem correctly.
        5. If you can boot the unstamped NBI, go ahead and stamp it on the Mac device, try booting to it.
          1. We are taking these steps to ensure the NBI has the MOST compatibility possible with that model of Mac. It should automatically have all the necessary drivers and hardware information built into the NBI when built on that specific device. Theoretically you should be able to build on any device without issue, but in practice it does not always turn out that way.
      3. Alternatively, and if you have Mac Server, you can try adding the NBI to the NetBoot service of the Mac Server. If you can boot to it from here the problem may be on the LANDESK PXE Rep.

    If you see the LDNetboot option in the boot menu, what happens when it is selected?

      1. Verbose Boot  will help see what is happening with this.
        1. Boot to the boot menu by holding the Option key when turning the machine on.
        2. Hold down Command+V when selecting the NBI option to boot.
        3. Instead of the spinning globe and Apple logo, you should see the boot kernel information detailing out all the information of the boot process.
        4. NOTE: This is a tricky troubleshooting step as there are many errors that are expected, and not suppressed by Apple. So seeing an error in this mode does not necessarily mean there is a problem. Any errors found have to be investigated as they could be a red herring. However where this mode is most helpful, is when the Netboot environment is not loading at all. You should be able to see the boot messages, and verify it is still working on booting. This is helpful in cases where the boot seems to be hung, in reality it actually may be booting very slow.
      2. Does LANDESK Provisioning run once the machine is in the NetBoot environment?
        1. If ldpprovision starts when booted and problems are encountered after this point we need to follow the steps in the Mac Provisioning Troubleshooting Document. How To Troubleshoot Mac Provisioning