Building Windows 7 Enterprise x64 Image / Home PC

We have started deploying new laptops (HP Probook 6550b) with 4 GB RAM so x64 Windows 7 is the preferred OS due to 3.5 GB limit of x32 Windows. Previous image covered in the series of articles starting here was 32 bit Pro generic and specific, now building 64 bit Ent generic / specific. I expect most desktops hereon in to have 64 bit OS eventually standardising on this except special cases.

Basic deployment steps:

  • Deploy OS to target platform
  • Deploy “core apps” (Office, SEP, SMS, Adobe, Smartboard)
  • Capture generic x64 OS + core apps image
  • Deploy “feature apps” (e.g. Firefox, Google Earth etc)
  • Capture generic x64 OS + core apps + feature apps image
  • Either one of the following:
    • Deploy to specific platform for image capture & deployment
      • Deploy this image to specific hardware platform (Probook 6550b for example)
      • Make any specific hardware customisations
      • Capture platform specific image
      • Test image deployment
    • Create platform specific task sequence for deployment
      • Create specific task sequence
      • Inject platform specific drivers (in addition to Windows driver injection)
      • Install platform specific applications
      • Test task sequence deployment

The above is a summary of my experience to date in the MDT system as well as some possible options for future exploration. Obviously MDT is a specialised system that I need to have some knowledge of, but I am not an expert in this system as I do not use it every day. For deployment to specific platforms to date (only one so far) I have preferred to use a customised task and this will probably be the means implemented for 64 bit deployment. Also I have two MDT environments, one used for capture and the other for deployment.

Building new home PC continues with purchase of motherboard. Next month will buy the CPU and RAM hoping to complete assembly in a few weeks. Delivery of memory for T5720 thin client expected shortly so can test capabilities soon.