8 Replies Latest reply on Nov 5, 2008 11:34 AM by keos

    Bypass F8 Menu, and WinPE menu


      No more hijacking someelse's thread, sorry.




      I want the computer to skip the F8 Menu and boot directly into WinPE, once WinPE boots, it also skips the WinPE menu and joins a ghost session.  Looking at earlier threads it was suggested to change the registry keys for DisablePredefinedLinuxPE etc from 0 to a 1.  This removes the options from the boot menu, which I did.  Now the only items remainin on the F8 Menu is "Local Boot, Managed WinPE and WinPE Menu".  I tried adjusting the WinPE Menu to the top by running PXE Configuration Utility but I am not successful.  Local Boot still appears to be on top.


      Current setup, we use LinuxPE with DOS to load ghost and automatically join a ghost session. There's only one input from the user, that is to active the PXE booting when the computer boots up (these are Dell computers). I want to achieve the same thing with LANDesk and WinPE.


      Interesting though: PXE Configuration Utility --> PXE Servers --> SERVERNAME --> proxyDHCP Server --> Client Boot Menu --> X86PC (UNDI)

      Does not list "Local Boot", where is this value being pulled from?  Currently it is displaying WinPE Menu, LANDesk(R) Managed Boot, and WinPE in this order.


      This is the first problem, the second, I want it to bypass the PXE Boot Menu where it prompt for a task.  Is there anyway to set the default for this menu?


      Currently we have to press F3 to enable PXE, then the F8 Menu appears. I have to select "WinPE Menu" otherwise the default is Local Boot. Once WinPE is booted, another menu appears, this is the PXE Boot Menu. Here I have to scroll down to my "Capture Image". This is tedious and time consuming. Is there anyway to automate this process?


      Thank you.

        • 1. Re: Bypass F8 Menu, and WinPE menu



          I just want the system to default to WinPE instead of LOCAL Boot, if I can't remove local boot all together.  There must be an area where that can be adjusted.  I removed other options that are not needed already, only options left are Local Boot, WinPE Provisioning, and WinPE.

          • 2. Re: Bypass F8 Menu, and WinPE menu
            ahe Expert

            Hello keos,


            try this for bypassing F8:

            1. start your PXE Configuration Utility
            2. Right click on "proxyDHCP Server"
            3. open tab "Client Options"
            4. Change the vaule in section "Global Bootserver Menu Prompt", field "Remote Boot Prompt Timeout" to 0 (standard is 4). (If you take use the value 255 the boot menu will be displayed)

            Did you kill the entry for "Local Boot" in "proxyDHCP Server" - "Client Boot Menu" - IA32 EFI (UNDI) and IA64 EFI (UNDI) too?




            1 of 1 people found this helpful
            • 3. Re: Bypass F8 Menu, and WinPE menu

              Thank you ahe for your response.


              I tried changing the value previously from the default 4 seconds to 0.  All this setting does is no longer does a count down and instead automatically select the top most option which is "Local boot". 


              The entries under IA32 EFI and IA64 EFI are new to me and were not removed previously.  I just did that but the process is still selecting Local Boot.  I also restart the LD PXE services and have even rebooted the server.  It is still selecting Local Boot.


              Under PXE Configuration Utility there are no options left for IA32 EFI or IA64 EFI.  Any where else I can check

              • 4. Re: Bypass F8 Menu, and WinPE menu
                Jared Barneck SupportEmployee

                Interesting though: PXE Configuration Utility --> PXE Servers --> SERVERNAME --> proxyDHCP Server --> Client Boot Menu --> X86PC (UNDI)


                Does not list "Local Boot", where is this value being pulled from? Currently it is displaying WinPE Menu, LANDesk(R) Managed Boot, and WinPE in this order.


                Just so you know, LANDesk has hijacked this configuration and we are have this statically in our code and not configurable.  Though you can add your own items by using this menu (though character space is limited), you cannot take away the LANDesk default items unless you use the registry key values disablepredefinedwhatever to disable them.  Once you take away a few items with the disablepredefinedwhatever registry value, you will also have more characters available to add your own item if needed.


                As for getting this to work:


                Once you change the option from 4 to 0, you will bypass the F8 menu.  However, you can also bypass the F8 menu a single time by putting the device in the PXE Holding Queue using the LANDesk Console in the Network View.  Or you can make every device on a subnet PXE bypass the F8 menu a single time if you go to Configure | Services | OSD and you place the PXE Rep in the PXE Rep Holding Queue.  That means that a single time, the device will bypass the F8 menu once.  If you want it to bypass again, you have to put the device in the holding queue again, or if using the PXE Rep Holding Queue you would have to reset it.


                Now, once you boot to WinPE you will not get the PxeMenu because it will boot to Managed PE and not the PE Menu.  The only difference between Managed PE and not the PE Menu is a parameter passed during network boot by the winnt.sif file on the PXE Rep.  Then the STARTNET.CMD (located in the system32 directory once inside winpe) can pick up that parameter and know whether to load or not load the PxeMenu.


                If you have an OSD task targeting that device that is in a failed state, then the device will automatically start the task.


                If you don't want to have to have a task scheduled and in the failed state, then you probably want to hijack the STARTNET.CMD to have the image process start automatically.  That would take some batch scripting.  If you have multiple images and you want to dynamically determine which one to load, that would be even more complex scripting.

                • 5. Re: Bypass F8 Menu, and WinPE menu
                  ahe Expert

                  There exist some entries in registry, but I think you can solve it if you change the order in the menu.


                  See in the attached document page 39 to change the menu order. On page 40 it is explained that "Local Boot" is a reserved type of bootserver and will be used if PXE boot ROM fails to boot.




                  • 6. Re: Bypass F8 Menu, and WinPE menu
                    Jared Barneck SupportEmployee

                    That document has good information, and works, but we have static code that puts local boot first.


                    While I feel that we should be using this configuration to create our boot menu, instead we are using static code. There is really not return on investment to spend time changing our code in this area as so few customers are adding their own items to the PXE boot menu.


                    That is why some of the options are not there in that configuration setting.  There are three items there but they aren't used, and if you delete them you still get the items we put in statically.

                    • 7. Re: Bypass F8 Menu, and WinPE menu
                      ahe Expert



                      Ok, I checked my old test PXE server installed with the original intel PXE PDK package and not with the version "changed" by LANDesk :-)


                      I checked it now on my productive PXE and I can't delete Local Boot...


                      If you want to test the PXE PDK, I can't find it any longer on intel site, but I found a other link, where you can find it: http://www.k62.net/PXE-ND.php




                      • 8. Re: Bypass F8 Menu, and WinPE menu

                        Ok, Thanks to everyone for their contribution to my questions, this is still a great forum.


                        It's really unfortunate that the option to move "Local Boot" down the list does not exist.  I think that something as simple as that should be easily configurable.  I search around the web and have encountered other people who wanted to accomplish the same thing.  Most mention 3Com PXE menu setup, so it is possible but only with the proper tool.  Though those tools would probably not work with the Hijack LANDesk changes.


                        My goal was to replace our existing PXE process which is LinuxPE and DOS.  The existing implementation was very simplified for Technicians, start GhostCast Server with session A, power up the client and press F3 (for PXE) and continue to the next workstation.  The client would bootup and launch ghost.exe and joins Session A.  If I use WinPE with the default Local boot menu, we will need to power up the workstations and press F3, then wait for the menu and select WinPE.  While this doesn't sound too excessive on one machine, having to wait (for example 5 seconds per machine), multiply against 4500+ workstations makes this a very long time to wait.


                        All is not lost however, in this research I found that I can schedule an imaging task using Vboot.  This feature allows me to power on the machines remotely and start imaging.  The only downside is WOL will only work on 80% of our machines (not a LANDesk issue) across 60 subnets.


                        Our warehouse or imaging centre, will continue to image using the old proven DOS method, it's quick and does not require any additional learning.  Provisioning would be too much for just imaging workstations requiring MAC address or some other unique fields on a machine basis.


                        I'd hope to only use WinPE, this saves on having to support 2 systems and also knowing that DOS someday will eventually be dropped. 


                        Oh well, such is life, one good way to look at it though: it's good job security.   


                        Thanks everyone for your support.