13 Replies Latest reply on Jun 9, 2009 12:20 PM by Jared Barneck

    Unattended Installation (Not imaging) and Computernames






      I am using an unattended installation and need a way of assigning a computername to the client being built.  If the client is already known to LANDesk then it should use the current name - if it's not then can a dialog be put up when the task is scheduled to ask what the computername should be ?









        • 1. Re: Unattended Installation (Not imaging) and Computernames


          Are you doing an unattended install on just one computer or multiple computers? Is there a perticular reason why you are not using OSD or Provisioning? I would think an unattended install would take more time...?  In both OSD and Provisioning a database token is used to get your computer name out of LANDesk using your mac address.



          • 2. Re: Unattended Installation (Not imaging) and Computernames
            zman Master


            You could use:


            1. csvimport to already have the name in LANDesk.

            2. Use any scripting language to prompt and change the name. Use the runonce in unattend. Very easy with Autoit.  Registry key is HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\ComputerName\ComputerName\ComputerName

            3. Domain considerations http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;298593&sd=tech

            We have our partner that we buy from enter the computer name in the bios asset tag area and then read it out using Autoit.  We use HPs but was wondering if this is possible with other vendors.

            • 3. Re: Unattended Installation (Not imaging) and Computernames
              ahe Expert



              you can do it in several ways:

              1. start the unattended installation with a batch file from your osd script and ask the user in the batch for the name and patch dynamically the unattended.txt
                                 (in the batch you have to check if the name is set by LANDesk) --- this is our (Linux/WinPE) method --- or

              2. you can use a list of names in a file (stored on network share) which is used by the XP install process (I've read on MS page in the past...) --- or

              3. after installation start the command on first logon: 
                     *     start /wait rundll32.exe shell32.dll,Control_RunDLL sysdm.cpl,,1*

              4. do nothing and wait for the network connection question for the install process...
                           If you write only a domain in your unattended.txt and don't get a name by LANDesk you'll asked during installation from XP (this was our old DOS based method) --- or

              5. use methods by ryse and zman...


              Some hints:
















              • 4. Re: Unattended Installation (Not imaging) and Computernames
                Jared Barneck SupportEmployee

                I do this all the time.  I have unattended installation OS Deployment scripts.  Are you using provisioning or OS Deployment?


                With OS Deployment, you can have the process name the machine exactly like it does when using OS Deployment for an image.  The only difference is you dynamically modify the Unattend.txt instead of the sysprep.inf and you do it before not after.


                Attached is a sample script and unattend.inf from my lab:

                • 5. Re: Unattended Installation (Not imaging) and Computernames
                  ahe Expert





                  I think it would be better to delete your product key from inf...



                  • 6. Re: Unattended Installation (Not imaging) and Computernames
                    Jared Barneck SupportEmployee

                    Yeah...I removed it...I thought those were my cleaned up scripts without my data, but I guess not.

                    • 7. Re: Unattended Installation (Not imaging) and Computernames


                      Im just curious... What would be the benefit of doing a Unattended install VS a syspreped install of an image?



                      Is there a specific reason as to why an unattended install would be better then using an image that is syspreped? Or is just end user preference?






                      • 8. Re: Unattended Installation (Not imaging) and Computernames
                        ahe Expert


                        Hello ryse,



                        you are more flexible to change something, embed updates, drivers, applications, make fixes and so on. And your are hardware independent. (s. links in my other post)



                        We use the same installation on PXE as on DVD. On sites without LANDesk PXE (sites with no WAN link or new sites without LANDesk licenses, etc.) we install our clients with DVD and we use the same installation process with applications, drivers, scripts as in our PXE environment.



                        Ok, imaging is much more faster, but in the past we've a lot of trouble with the creation process of new images on new hardware. We've about 20 different hardware plattforms!  :|  And it is not the problem to start the installation process in the evening on ten or twenty clients which are finished on the next morning... 










                        • 9. Re: Unattended Installation (Not imaging) and Computernames
                          Jared Barneck SupportEmployee

                          The time to run an unattended installation is about 30 minutes on good hardware.  It works on almost all hardware without having to add drivers.  Occasionally you have to add a drive controller driver.


                          But then you have to patch it and and add software...but a lot of patches you can add to the actual installation source.


                          So it is basically works on 90% of the platforms out there from the start.


                          To build a good image, you have to really make it work on Multiple Platforms and that can take 1 to 3 days per platform sometimes.


                          So do you want to spend a lot of time up front building a Multi-platform Image (what some incorrectly term Hardware Independent Imaging (HII) but lets face it, it is not Hardware Independent so that is an incorrect name.)  So to get your image to work on 10 platforms in 1 to 3 business days per platform, you can spend 10-30 business days.  Hopefully you get better and faster at it as time goes on.  But then with new hardware you have to update your image, make it work on a new platform (because it wasn't really hardware independent, it just works on a list of hardware so if you get new hardware you have to add to that list).


                          Anyway, if getting the machine back up and working in a timely manner is not a priority, unattended installation are great, and work on far more platforms than any image you can build.

                          • 10. Re: Unattended Installation (Not imaging) and Computernames

                            I agree with the term HII being used incorrectly.. Its only as hardware independent as the end user makes it. I have one right now that works on 30 DELL models. It took about 3 days to build. Most of the time was used in building the driver archive.






                            With provisioning there really is only one reason to change the "MASTER" Image. Thats when a new storage controller comes out. Sysprep will need to be run with the new mass storage drivers included under the massstoragedriver section. All other drivers can be updated and new models can be added to a central driver archive. The HAL is updated during the sysprep process.



                            Heres a thought:



                            What If sysprep can be run from the WINPE environment.. Or if the same process can be duplicated with out running sysprep.. Perhaps by running regmon and filemon during sysprep could show what changes are made to the system. From these results we would be able to build a script which would load actual system registry using REG LOAD command and then make the corrosponding changes.



                            This process could then be added to a provisioning template and only the script would have to be changed when a new storage controller is added. Im not sure if this would work though.. What do you think? Scripting guys.. Any input here?



                            Ill have to look into a unattended install more.. Vista on the other hand has the new HII-file format.. I did not have a chance to dive into Vista provisioning though..

                            • 11. Re: Unattended Installation (Not imaging) and Computernames

                              Hi rhyous,


                              I am searching for document on unattended OS installation and have found your post. Do you have any document on using unattended installation with LANDesk? If so, could you kindly share with me? Thanks.


                              Thanks and regards,


                              • 12. Re: Unattended Installation (Not imaging) and Computernames
                                Jared Barneck SupportEmployee

                                Here are some unattended installation scripts I wrote a while back.


                                I don't really have a doc on them.


                                You can open them with a text editor and find and replace your values.