1.1 Brief Overview

The following provides a brief overview of Preboot Services:

1.1.1 Preboot Services Functionality

Preboot Services allows you to automatically or manually do any of the following to a Windows device when it boots:

  • Make an image of the device’s hard drives and other storage devices

  • Restore an image to the device

  • Apply an existing image to multiple devices

  • Run Imaging scripts on the device

To accomplish these tasks automatically using ZENworks Control Center, you simply need to have PXE (Preboot Execution Environment) enabled on your devices, then have Imaging bundles configured and assigned to the devices. The devices automatically execute these bundles when they boot.

Preboot Services utilizes the following to make its imaging functions possible:

  • PXE (Preboot Execution Environment): An Intel specification that allows a device to boot from the network, instead of its hard drive or other local media. ZENworks Configuration Management can use PXE to launch Preboot Services.

  • Preboot Services Bootable CD or DVD: Used where PXE is not installed or where you want to manually perform a Preboot Services operation. This is applicable only for ZENworks Imaging.

  • Preboot Services Bootable Diskette: Enables using the Preboot Services bootable CD or DVD when the device doesn’t support booting from a CD or DVD. This is applicable only for ZENworks Imaging.

  • ZENworks Partition: Enables you to set up a device for unattended imaging operations where the device is not PXE-enabled or does not have access to PXE network services. This is applicable only for ZENworks Imaging.

For more information on these methods, see Section 3.0, Using Imaging.

1.1.2 Preboot Services Strategies

Following are some of the uses of Preboot Services:

  • Create and Restore Standard Images: Create base images from existing devices, as well as restore images to any manageable device.

  • Set Up Devices for Future Reimaging: Set up devices so that the next time they reboot, they do the imaging work that is contained in their assigned Imaging bundle.

  • Multicast Device Images: Apply an image of one device to many other devices. This is an excellent feature for initially setting up a lab.

  • Restore Devices to a Clean State: Quickly and efficiently reset devices to an initial state, such as in a lab.

For more information on these strategies, see Section 1.5, Preboot Strategies.

1.1.3 Imaging Bundles

In ZENworks Control Center, Preboot Services tasks are contained in Imaging bundles. The following Imaging bundle types are available:

  • Empty Bundle: A bundle with no initial tasks. You can quickly create this bundle without performing all of tasks in the Create New Bundle wizard. Later, you can edit its details to add assignments, actions, and so forth.

  • Imaging Script Bundle: Allows you to write a custom Imaging script. This provides detailed control over ZENworks imaging operations, as well as most Windows-based preboot tasks. This is applicable only for ZENworks Imaging.

  • Multicast Image Set Bundle: Specifies an image that can be sent through the multicast protocol. This bundle allows you to send an image to a large number of devices in a single operation, which minimizes network traffic. It is ideal for labs, classrooms, and staging areas. This is applicable only for ZENworks Imaging.

  • Third-Party Image Bundle: Allows you to specify the third-party images that can be restored on a device.

  • ZENworks Image Bundle: Lists one or more ZENworks images (base plus add-ons) that can be restored on a device. This bundle allows you to define simple imaging operations.

To create one of these bundles: in ZENworks Control Center, click Bundles in the left pane, in the Bundles panel click New > Bundle > Imaging Bundle > Next, then select a bundle type.

For more information on these bundles, see Section 1.3.1, Imaging Bundles.

1.1.4 Configuring Preboot Services

In ZENworks Control Center, you can set up default Preboot Services configurations for all of your devices. Some settings can be overridden at the device, group, and folder levels.

You can configure the following settings per ZENworks Management Zone:

  • Novell Preboot Services Menu Options: The menu contains five options: 1) Start ZENworks Imaging (automatically executes the bundle); 2) Start ZENworks Imaging Maintenance (accesses the imaging maintenance mode prompt); 3) Disable ZENworks Partition; 4) Enable ZENworks Partition; and, 5) Exit (resumes booting). You can configure whether the menu is displayed upon booting, not displayed, or displayed only when Ctrl+Alt is pressed during booting.

  • Non-Registered Device Settings: You can use Preboot Services to automatically name your non-registered devices, using such criteria as prefixes, BIOS information (such as asset tags or serial numbers), DNS suffixes, and you can set up DHCP or IP addresses.

  • Device Imaging Work Assignment: Work assignment rules are used to determine which bundle should be applied to which device. The work rules use logic to determine whether a device meets the requirements for applying the Imaging bundle. A rule is made up of filters that are used to determine whether a device complies with the rule. The AND and OR logical operators are used for creating complex filters for the rule.

  • Server Referral List: When a device boots, it is necessary for it to find its home Management Zone to get its assigned imaging work. If multiple Management Zones exist on the network, server referral lists provide a method for allowing a managed device to find its home zone.

  • Intel Active Management Technology (AMT): Intel AMT provides Preboot Services with persistent device identification.

  • Third-Party Imaging Settings: You can upload WinPE (Windows Preboot Environment) and third-party Imaging tools such as Microsoft Imaging engine (imagex.exe) and Symantec Ghost (ghost32.exe). Before configuring the third-party Imaging settings, ensure that Microsoft Windows Automated Installation Kit (WAIK) is installed on the device running the ZENworks Control Center.

  • TFTP Replication Settings: You can replicate the changes made to the tftp directory on other Imaging servers (Primary Servers or Satellites with the Imaging role). The tftp directory contains files such as configuration files and binaries used by ZENworks Configuration Management to perform imaging tasks. The directory is located on the Imaging server in /srv/ on Linux and in %ZENWORKS_HOME%\share\ on Windows.

To configure these settings, click Configuration in the left pane to display the Configuration tab. If it’s not expanded, click Management Zone Settings, then click Device Management > Preboot Services to display the Preboot Services page.

For more information, see Section 1.3, Preboot Services Functionality.

1.1.5 Setting Up Devices to Use Imaging Bundles

In order for a device to automatically use an assigned Imaging bundle, you must complete two tasks:

Setting Up the Device to Apply the Bundle

Preboot Services utilizes PXE and other boot mechanisms and media to trigger the imaging work. For information, see Section 2.3, Setting Up the Preboot Services Methods for ZENworks Imaging.

Assigning a Bundle

You can assign a Preboot bundle to devices only. Assignment of a Preboot bundle to a device parent folder or a device group is currently not supported.

The following paths represent many of the methods for assigning bundles to devices, or devices to bundles:

  • Click Devices > Servers > select the check boxes next to one or more servers, then click Action > Assign Bundle.

    You can assign bundles to all selected servers.

  • Click Devices > Workstations > select the check boxes next to one or more workstations, then click Action > Assign Bundle.

    You can assign bundles to all selected workstations.

  • Click Devices > Servers > select a server, then click Advanced (in Imaging Work on the Summary tab).

    You can assign a specific bundle to the server.

  • Click Devices > Workstations > select a workstation, then click Advanced (in Imaging Work on the Summary tab).

    You can assign a specific bundle to the workstation.

  • Click Bundles > Servers > select the check box next to a server, then click Action > Assign Bundle.

    You can assign multiple bundles to the server.

  • Click Bundles > Workstations > select the check box next to a workstation, then click Action > Assign Bundle.

    You can assign multiple bundles to the workstation.

  • Click Bundles > select the check boxes next to one or more bundle names, then click Action > Assign Bundle to Device.

    You can assign the selected bundles to the devices that you select in the wizard.