Do any windows imaging tools allow medialess/live/auto re-imaging??

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by poof, Jun 20, 2011.

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  1. poof

    poof Registered Member

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    I'll need to reimage a group of windows computers remotely from time to time, and i cant leave usb sticks or dvd's containing the the image files in the computer, so my first question is do any programs let me load the saved image onto the computer with an image file located on the harddrive?

    The other issue is that since im doing this remotely, i'll either need to load the image file while windows is running, or have it do it automatically on reboot since i wont be able to remote into the preboot environment. Can anything do this?
     
  2. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    poof,

    Is this correct? You have remote computers networked to your computer. There are images stored on the remote computers (or on your computer). You want to restore the images to the remote computers?
     
  3. poof

    poof Registered Member

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    No, these computers can be networked together, but the computer im accessing them from is remote (another location). I wanted to put the image file on one (if they're networked) or all (if imaging cant work over a network) computers.

    These computers are all uniform, except for their networking settings, so all i need is one image to reimage them all, even if i have a copy on every computer. The reason i'll need them to be local is due to the size of the images and time it would take to transfer them over the net.

    edit: Just to clarify i am speaking of restoring images, the creation of the images will have been done in advance and isnt an issue.
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2011
  4. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    I'm not sure I understand your setup but I'll let you know what can be done. I have images of my kids' OSs stored on one of my HDs. They also have images on their second HDs.

    From my computer I can initiate an Image for Linux restore on their computers using the image on my HD or their HD. They are using WinXP and Win7.

    psexec is used to send a batch file to their computer to initiate the restore. Is this possible using your remote computer? All you need to send is a small batch file.
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2011
  5. poof

    poof Registered Member

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    Ok, let me try this again. I have a group of identical computers which can be networked together, but dont necessarily need to be. From time to time i might need to log in from a distant location and restore the images contained on their harddrives (each computer only has one hd).

    First i would like to know if i can restore an image contained on the drive thats going to be restored.

    Second i would like to know if this can be done while the OS is active, or if not, can it be done automatically while its rebooting since i wont have any access to it during.

    Lastly, can i restore a group of computers whose image is located on another computer on the same network, and if i can, how can this be done without breaking my ability to connect to it?
     
  6. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Yes. As long as the image is in a partition separate from the OS partition.

    Image for Linux will cause the computer to shut down and reboot into the IFL restore environment. The restore will take place and the computer will reboot into Windows. After you have sent the batch file, everything is automatic.

    Yes. One at a time. IFL can't do multi-cast.
     
  7. poof

    poof Registered Member

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    Ok great, now what programs for windows will allow me to do this?
     
  8. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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  9. poof

    poof Registered Member

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    I said for windows, i dont use linux.
     
  10. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    IFL creates/restores images of Windows OS. It boots into a Linux environment to run.
     
  11. treehouse786

    treehouse786 Registered Member

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    acronis can do this too, medialess restores, no batch file or semi-advanced skills required, full GUI to boot.

    you can do this from the main acronis module and not a separate exe, acronis does the rest
     
  12. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    treehouse786,

    Are you sure? How do you get the networked computer to initiate the restore when you are sitting at a different computer?
     
  13. treehouse786

    treehouse786 Registered Member

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    the same way you do it when your in front of the computer in question, except your using a remote dial in software instead. the main acronis program has a 'restore module' built into the program, its not a separate program, i hope am making sense
     
  14. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Interesting. I'll see if I can get a userguide and find out more. Do you have a page reference?
     
  15. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    treehouse786,

    You are going to have to help us here. Which Acronis product? There is no mention of restoring an image to another computer over the network in the Acronis TI Home 2011 userguide.
     
  16. Sully

    Sully Registered Member

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    I've never tried it, but what about building a PE image that includes VNC, and booting into that as the default option? In this manner one could send a reboot to the remote machine, it in turn boots to PE with VNC running (and NIC setup), which then gives you remote capabilities to restore an image with. It might mean modifying the boot sequence of the re-imaged machine so that it boots to the OS rather than PE.

    One could easily use grub4dos and simply modify the .lst file it boots from to choose whether the default would be PE or ntldr.

    I have never tried a VNC product in PE, so this is just an idea.

    Sul.
     
  17. treehouse786

    treehouse786 Registered Member

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    plz, call me tree.

    so if i understand this correctly, the OP wants to restore images on workstations from a long way away via dialing in using remote assist software. the workstation he is dialing into only has 1 HDD which contains the operating system and image file. is this correct?
     
  18. treehouse786

    treehouse786 Registered Member

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    if the above is correct then yes acronis can do this as long the image is on a different partition from the OS.

    you just select the image from the program GUI (whilst in windows normal mode) and then acronis will automatically restart the system and start restoring after the restart.

    so select the image file- press 'run'- and then let acronis do the rest
     
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