Sysprep Windows 7

I'm trying to create a windows 7 image since I have many pc's with of the same hardware. I haven't done this in a while but in Win XP I would have to run sysprep before I created the image. Do I still need to do that in Win 7 to regenerate the sids? Also I was going to use clonezilla to create an image for multiple machines that I can store on a usb drive for quick restores. Is clonezilla the best free utility or is there something better to use?



Microsoft only officially supports imaging that uses Sysprep. In the real world, you can probably get by without it on workstations (not servers) but I always say do whats supported so you have the option to call Microsoft for help. Other utilities, even Russinovich's own NewSID from the Sysinternals, will not do a good job or can even damage your install. Sysprep is the only way. It's free, and its built in so use it. Don't forget, you can only Sysprep an image 3 times then you're locked out and have to start fresh. Don't try and hack around it either... the limit is Microsoft's and its there for a reason.

Side notes with Sysprep: Make this registry key change BEFORE running sysprep to keep all of the drivers you install:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionSetupSysprepSettingssppnp

set PersistAllDeviceInstalls to 1.

As far as imaging software, Clonezilla, Casper, or my personal favorite Acronis will all do a good basic job with advanced features depending on licensing and feature-set of each vendors utility.

And for more information, check out this thread: http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Windows/Windows_7/Q_28113660.html?related=28582967

Thx



Microsoft only officially supports imaging that uses Sysprep. In the real world, you can probably get by without it on workstations (not servers) but I always say do whats supported so you have the option to call Microsoft for help. Other utilities, even Russinovich's own NewSID from the Sysinternals, will not do a good job or can even damage your install. Sysprep is the only way. It's free, and its built in so use it. Don't forget, you can only Sysprep an image 3 times then you're locked out and have to start fresh. Don't try and hack around it either... the limit is Microsoft's and its there for a reason.

Side notes with Sysprep: Make this registry key change BEFORE running sysprep to keep all of the drivers you install:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionSetupSysprepSettingssppnp

set PersistAllDeviceInstalls to 1.

As far as imaging software, Clonezilla, Casper, or my personal favorite Acronis will all do a good basic job with advanced features depending on licensing and feature-set of each vendors utility.

And for more information, check out this thread: http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Windows/Windows_7/Q_28113660.html?related=28582967

Thx



how do you run it in Win 7 do I need the iso, I remember have to extract a cab file in Win XP



35. Simplify Cloned Machine Setups. You can't run Sysinternals' newsid utility to change the identity of a cloned Windows 7 machine (either a virtual machine or imaged PC). Instead, create a template installation then run sysprep /oobe /generalize /reboot /shutdown /unattend:scriptfile. Clone or copy this virtual machine file. When it launches, it will get a new SID and you can fill in the name. The reference for building unattended script files is at tinyurl.com/winunattend.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/magazine/2009.10.77windows.aspx?sid=5cbb6c33dee24e04beee633c420481a2




I use clonezilla often, while i can't say it is the "best" it is free, and easy.. familiar for me to use.. So i just use that.. I know you can use other GUI oriented ones, but i think i have become so used to clonezilla i don't bother with the other ones..


Hope that helps..

NOTE: You don't need to sysprep cloned machines if.. IF there is no software installed on it.. There is some issue with the autoSID configuration in Windows 7 that messes up, if there is software installed already..

Otherwise you shouldn't need to run sysprep at all.. "Kinda pointless, if there is no software i know" Just pointing that out..



You dont need the ISO; its built in to Windows. Run this from Start --> Run to pull up the GUI::
C:WindowsSystem32sysprepsysprep.exe


Or... from command line:
C:WindowsSystem32sysprepsysprep.exe /oobe /generalize /shutdown


Hope this helps get you started. You'll need to read up more as you go (extra features like unattended answer files, etc. expand your abilities) as well as experiment to make sure everything you install tolerates the Sysprep treatment. As Rob G. mentioned there are a few apps that don't tolerate it well, but I've found they're pretty few and far between.

Thx



"NOTE: You don't need to sysprep cloned machines if.. IF there is no software installed on it.. There is some issue with the autoSID configuration in Windows 7 that messes up, if there is software installed already..

Otherwise you shouldn't need to run sysprep at all.. "Kinda pointless, if there is no software i know" Just pointing that out.."

Wrong.
If your machines are company machines and you ever need ANY kind of software support from Microsoft then You sysprep.

If a machine is cloned but not sysprepped it is unsupported.

If a machine ever takes part in network controlled applications like WSUS or enterprise AV systems then not sysprepping will cause problems.

Microsoft do not support image distribution without sysprep for a reason.

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