How to distribute images from the local PXE server

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Article ID: 178287

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Deployment Solution

Issue/Introduction

 

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Question
I manage multiple remote sites using a single Deployment Server and a PXE server on each remote sites. How can I configure my PXE servers so that images are deployed from the PXE server that is local to the client rather than the Deployment Server?

Answer

When WinPE is booted via PXE, it will have the envrionment variables %ALTIRIS_PXE_SERVER% and %ALTIRIS_PXE_IP% which can be used to reference the server name and IP Address of the PXE Server. These environment variables can be used to allow a drive to be mapped to the local PXE Server.

  1. On your Deployment Server and all PXE Servers, create a share named Images that contains all the images you want to deploy from the local site. Make sure the content of all Images shares are identical.
  2. Create/modify the boot image of a shared WinPE PXE menu option.
  3. At “Step 6 of 12: Network Drive Mappings”
    1. Select the drive letter you want to use to reference the local Images share.
    2. For the Path, put \\%ALTIRIS_PXE_SERVER%\Images
  4. At “Step 9 of 12: Edit Configuration”
    1. Right-click the prestart folder and choose New>Text File.
    2. Name the file lmhosts.bat
    3. Clear the content of the new lmhosts.bat file and put the following:
      echo %ALTIRIS_PXE_IP% %ALTIRIS_PXE_SERVER% >> %SystemRoot%\system32\drivers\etc\lmhosts
    4. Click the Save button to save your changes.
  5. Finish the boot image creation and save your changes.
  6. Create/modify the job that you wish to use the local Images share.
    1. For image tasks, specify the location of the image using the drive letter you chose to point to the Images share. For example, if your Images share is mapped to drive G: and the image file exists at \\YourServer\Images\Windows\XP-SP2.img then specify the disk image file name G:\Windows\XP-SP2.img