12 Replies Latest reply on Jul 28, 2008 9:15 AM by phoffmann

    Need help with WinPE multicasting

    Rookie

       

      I'm new to the world of WinPE imaging.  Been using DOS PXE booting for a long time, but now I find myself wanting some of the features available in WinPE.

       

       

      Problem is that I don't know my way around the environment very well, and I'm finding it difficult to trace problems.

       

       

      I've never had much luck with Multicasting even in the DOS days, so I've always just used unicast imaging.  I'm wondering, though, if it will work a little better in WinPE than it did in dos.  I'm having trouble getting it started, though.

       

       

      I've got my PXE rep set up, and it's also acting as the sole multicast domain representative for the area, and I've pre-cached the image files in the SDMCache directory to speed things along.  I've set up the PXE rep as a holding queue proxy, and when I booted my test computer, it automatically went into the holding queue like it was supposed to.  It had a status of "in"

       

       

      Then i started my deployment, and in launched the agent, but it failed pretty quickly with a message of "No status received. The client may be off or multicast may not be installed". 

       

       

      Does this mean my multicast rep isn't working?  Also, is it normal when I boot up my machines in WinPE Managed mode that they just kind of sit there with blank screens?  I see them boot up, and I see it connecting to the Core, but then the console window closes and the machine just sits around.  Is that what it's supposed to do?

       

       

       

       

       

        • 1. Re: Need help with WinPE multicasting
          Rookie

           

          Update:  Now I'm not getting machines to go into the PXE holding queue all of a sudden.  The last time I tried they just ended up in there, and now I've started three machines to take another crack at multicasting, but none of them are showing in the holding queue.

           

           

           

           

           

          all three machines have existing records in the inventory database.

           

           

          • 2. Re: Need help with WinPE multicasting
            Rookie

             

            This is what I'm seeing in the TMCSVC log on my subnet multicast rep

             

             

             

             

             

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:48:37 Already have the file 49588000.IMG in cache

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:48:41 Being asked if we have file in cache

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:48:41 Being asked if we have file in cache

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:48:42 Being asked if we have file in cache

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:48:43 As subnet rep, determined that no targets need file

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:48:43 Sending Status (reason 0) for file 49588000.IMG

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:48:51 Already have the file 49588000.001 in cache

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:48:55 Being asked if we have file in cache

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:48:56 Being asked if we have file in cache

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:48:56 Being asked if we have file in cache

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:48:57 As subnet rep, determined that no targets need file

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:48:57 Sending Status (reason 0) for file 49588000.001

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:49:05 Already have the file 49588000.002 in cache

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:49:09 Being asked if we have file in cache

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:49:10 Being asked if we have file in cache

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:49:10 Being asked if we have file in cache

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:49:11 As subnet rep, determined that no targets need file

            Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:49:11 Sending Status (reason 0) for file 49588000.002

             

             

            I've pre-staged the files in the sdmcache directory which is why the files are already in cache...but the wierd thing is that it's stopped checking after the .002 file.  It should be going all the way up to .004, because that's the last file in the image set.  Also I'm not sure what it means by "no targets need file".

             

             

             

             

             

            I have 3 clients in managed boot mode that I've put into my OSD task in console, they should all "need the files"

             

             

            • 3. Re: Need help with WinPE multicasting
              Rookie

               

              Also, here is the LANDesk log from the core server

               

               

               

               

               

              "Machine","CbaStatus","ExitCode","Duration","Begin","End","Command"

              "DDSGD43","OK",0,0:00:00,7/23/2008 12:17:31 PM,7/23/2008 12:17:31 PM,"WINPE, TIMEOUT=1800"

              "DDSGD44","OK",0,0:00:01,7/23/2008 12:17:31 PM,7/23/2008 12:17:32 PM,"WINPE, TIMEOUT=1800"

              "DDSGD43","OK",0,0:00:02,7/23/2008 12:17:31 PM,7/23/2008 12:17:33 PM,"X:\LDClient\diskinfo new_temp_partition 9788, STATUS"

              "DDSGD44","OK",0,0:00:01,7/23/2008 12:17:32 PM,7/23/2008 12:17:33 PM,"X:\LDClient\diskinfo new_temp_partition 9788, STATUS"

              "DDSGD43","OK",0,0:00:01,7/23/2008 12:17:33 PM,7/23/2008 12:17:34 PM,"X:\LDClient\wpemcast.exe g:, ASYNC"

              "DDSGD44","OK",0,0:00:01,7/23/2008 12:17:33 PM,7/23/2008 12:17:34 PM,"X:\LDClient\wpemcast.exe g:, ASYNC"

              "DDSGD43","OK",0,0:00:15,7/23/2008 12:17:34 PM,7/23/2008 12:17:49 PM,"SLEEP"

              "DDSGD44","OK",0,0:00:15,7/23/2008 12:17:34 PM,7/23/2008 12:17:49 PM,"SLEEP"

              "(FAILED) DDSGD44","FAILED",1306,"0:00:00","7/23/2008 12:18:01 PM","7/23/2008 12:18:01 PM","Targeted Multicast"

              "(FAILED) DDSGD43","FAILED",1306,"0:00:00","7/23/2008 12:18:01 PM","7/23/2008 12:18:01 PM","Targeted Multicast"

              "(FAILED) DDSGD43","FAILED",1306,"0:00:00","7/23/2008 12:18:15 PM","7/23/2008 12:18:15 PM","Targeted Multicast"

              "(FAILED) DDSGD44","FAILED",1306,"0:00:00","7/23/2008 12:18:15 PM","7/23/2008 12:18:15 PM","Targeted Multicast"

              "(FAILED) DDSGD44","FAILED",1306,"0:00:00","7/23/2008 12:18:29 PM","7/23/2008 12:18:29 PM","Targeted Multicast"

              "(FAILED) DDSGD43","FAILED",1306,"0:00:00","7/23/2008 12:18:29 PM","7/23/2008 12:18:29 PM","Targeted Multicast"

              "(FAILED) DDSGD43","FAILED",1306,"0:00:00","7/23/2008 12:18:44 PM","7/23/2008 12:18:44 PM","Targeted Multicast"

              "(FAILED) DDSGD44","FAILED",1306,"0:00:00","7/23/2008 12:18:44 PM","7/23/2008 12:18:44 PM","Targeted Multicast"

              "(FAILED) DDSGD44","FAILED",1306,"0:00:00","7/23/2008 12:18:59 PM","7/23/2008 12:18:59 PM","Targeted Multicast"

              "(FAILED) DDSGD43","FAILED",1306,"0:00:00","7/23/2008 12:18:59 PM","7/23/2008 12:18:59 PM","Targeted Multicast"

              ; "Job Complete","0 Done","10 Failed","0 Off","0 Unknown"

               

               

              • 4. Re: Need help with WinPE multicasting
                Rookie

                 

                I re-deployed my PXE Rep, and TMC rep to another machine, and that seems to be doing the trick.  I'm still new to this WinPE multicasting, thing, though...I can see that my multicast computer is broadcasting (VERY slowly...like 10mps on a 1gbps LAN) and I can see that the clients are recieving...(at around 6.3mbps oddly enough) but I can't tell if it's making any progress.

                 

                 

                the window that shows how many packets are received is constantly showing the same two messages alternating

                 

                 

                 

                 

                 

                11534064 packets received

                 

                 

                and

                 

                 

                Receiving 11534068, need 4210896 resent

                 

                 

                • 5. Re: Need help with WinPE multicasting
                  ProServices

                   

                  Hi

                   

                   

                  Remember, a machine will only go into the holding queue once, until the queue is reset. That is by design, but its a good "gotcha". Catches me all the time!

                   

                   

                  Regards

                   

                   

                  Ian

                   

                   

                  • 6. Re: Need help with WinPE multicasting
                    ProServices

                     

                    BTW. You can reset the holding queue at any time by going to "Configure | Services | whatever the option is I dont have a core in front of me" and click Reset

                     

                     

                     

                     

                     

                    • 7. Re: Need help with WinPE multicasting
                      Rookie

                      I've tried that one, albiet on my former (not working quite right) PXE Rept.

                       

                      Doesn't seem to help any. What's strange is that the PXE rep I just deployed does not show up in the list of PXE Representatives on the Core. This means I can't select my new rep as a Holding Queue Proxy, let alone reset it.

                       

                       

                       

                       

                       

                       

                       

                       

                      I've run an inventory scan on my new Rep, but it still won't show in that list.

                       

                       

                       

                       

                       

                       

                       

                       

                      Also does anyone know if there's a way to reboot a workstation from the Console and make it come up in WinPE Managed mode?

                       

                       

                       

                       

                       

                      EDIT:  I got the Rep showing up in the console now.  I manually executed the inventory scanner and forced it to scan software and do a SYNC with the core, and after that it showed up.  Would still like to know if it's possible to remotely force a PC to reboot into WinPE Managed mode.

                      • 8. Re: Need help with WinPE multicasting
                        phoffmann SupportEmployee

                        Yes there is. You do it via the script.

                         

                        Let me dig up some old e-mail ... in the below example, the REMPING is for DOS, but you should be fine just changing it to your OS of choice.

                         

                        (...commands 1...)
                        PXEQUEUE100=Pending
                        REMEXECxx=reboot
                        remping=dos
                        (...commands 2...)
                        PXEQUEUE200=Out
                        (...commands 3 - reboot into OS install...)
                        

                         

                         

                        The PXEQUEUE##=PENDING forces a client to go "back to the PXE-queue" boot upon reboot. This is very handy if you need to do multiple reboots (such as an upgrade from NT4, where you wipe the hard drive - reboot - only then can you create your new NTFS partition) - and when you're done, you use the PXEQUEUE##=OUT command.

                         

                        Would suggest you initially play with it for a simpler thing first to familiarize yourself with it :).

                         

                        So a "pseudo-script" excerpt may look like this:

                         

                        ...
                        REMEXEC99=Somecommand.exe
                        PXEQUEUE100=Pending
                        REMEXEC101=reboot
                        remping=dos
                        REMEXEC102=SomeOthercommand.exe
                        PXEQUEUE103=Pending
                        REMEXEC104=reboot
                        remping=dos
                        REMEXEC105=MyFinalCommand.exe
                        PXEQUEUE106=Out
                        REMEXEC107=reboot
                        ...
                        

                         

                        That should show you the idea well enough?

                         

                        Paul Hoffmann

                        LANDesk EMEA Technical Lead.

                        • 9. Re: Need help with WinPE multicasting
                          Rookie

                           

                          I think I should have been clearer in that I was looking for a way to take an already managed client that was booted in windows and force it to reboot in WinPE.  I discovered, however, that if you just create a scheduled task and drop the clients in there they will do this automatically...problem there is that they try to pull down the LDVPE0.img file via http from the core server rather than the local PXE rep...which is fine when a single client is trying to pull it down...but I had a test group of 11 machines and it took over 2 hours just to pull down the image file.

                           

                           

                          I think I might look into a multicast script to pre-stage the boot image in the sdmcache directories.  Would that work, or would the OSD script just ignore them and overwrite?

                           

                           

                          I'm going to give that a try this afternoon.  I have a group of 45 machines that are happily multicasting away right now.  We manually booted them via PXE into WinPE managed mode, and from there I kicked off the script.  It wasn't as elegant as I'd hoped, but I needed them to get done.  I have a hundred more or so that I'll do on monday...maybe I'll be able to do those without having to actually touch any of them.

                           

                           

                          • 10. Re: Need help with WinPE multicasting
                            phoffmann SupportEmployee

                            Well - "sort of" - if you look at the script, you see SDCLIENT being used as normal (pointing to an HTTP path) so there's no reason why preferred package servers and so on shouldn't work (as long as you maintain the same directory structure - usual rules apply). But you could work just as well with a DNS-alias ... so

                             

                            Instead of running:

                             

                            REMEXECxx= ... /o /f /p="http://%CUSTJOBHOSTIP%/..."

                             

                            command, you could run

                             

                            REMEXECxx= ... /o /f /p="http://DNSALIAS/..."

                             

                            in your OSD script - you'd just need to edit it. Scripts are there - feel free to hack 'em about.

                             

                            Paul Hoffmann

                            LANDesk EMEA Techical Lead

                            • 11. Re: Need help with WinPE multicasting
                              Rookie

                              Could that be changed from an HTTP to a UNC path?

                              • 12. Re: Need help with WinPE multicasting
                                phoffmann SupportEmployee

                                Well - COULD - yes, it's just a script, so you could make it run something completely different if you wanted to.

                                 

                                But UNC usually causes MORE issues, not fewer than HTTP...

                                 

                                Paul Hoffmann

                                LANDesk EMEA Technical Lead