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Old 12-03-2008, 10:45 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default How can I make an image of a HDD installation?

...for free?

I'd like to make 1 "master CD" of XP with all of the installed programs teachers may need.

We have some type of mass volume licensing in the district, so we can clone this as many times as I need to as long as our computers are on the campus. Anyway, I'd like to do this... Install XP along with drivers, SP3, flash, java, reader, office, firefox, ie7, symantec, blah blah blah... and "snapshot" it (like ghost, I guess) to an ISO... then make that ISO bootable on a CD/DVD.

My goal is to have a master installation CD that can be taken care of completely unattended. With the short staff we have and the hundreds of computers that need serviced, it's just mind boggling trying to get this all done.

Is there such a thing?

I'm looking for programs for XP or Ubuntu. They just need to be free.

Also - Anybody use the "dd" command in Ubuntu? Would that do what I need? If I set up Ubuntu + my work copy of XP, could I log onto Ubuntu and "dd" the XP partition to do what I listed above?
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Old 12-03-2008, 10:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: How can I make an image of a HDD installation?

Clonezilla

Maybe that will work? But it wont be a CD. You would be lucky to get it all on a DVD. If you include things liek Office and all that. It would most likely be a DL DVD.

Ghost and Acronis True Image will do it as well.
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Old 12-03-2008, 11:10 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: How can I make an image of a HDD installation?

Mak-

Do you really think it'd exceed 4.7 gb? And are all of these programs you listed free? I don't think Ghost is...

I mean, Office is 700 meg installed, XP is 2 gig or something... the remaining stuff is small enough. Maybe I could get lucky.

I'll give them a shot when I hit some free time at work tomorrow. Thanks for the input.
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Old 12-03-2008, 11:12 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: How can I make an image of a HDD installation?

While Office and XP should fit on a 4.7GB adding in Symantec could push you over. The Clonezilla is free.

IT is just with what you want to add i think will push you over. Flash, Firefox, Symantec and all that do add up quickly.
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Old 12-03-2008, 11:26 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: How can I make an image of a HDD installation?

I don't mind keeping Symantec off of the image. In fact, it may be a good idea, because there's been talk about us dropping Symantec for something else.

If I can get XP SP3, Office 2003, Flash, Reader, Java, Quicktime, and IE7 on 1 disc along with it being unattended (no time zone or key input requirement) then we'd be gooooooooooolden!

Is CloneZilla Windows only?
Edit - I see it's Linux too. Nevermind.
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Old 12-04-2008, 10:56 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: How can I make an image of a HDD installation?

Crap, I just remembered something. Some of our older computers have CD drives that aren't DVD-readable. So I don't know if I could even scrunch the XP install + reader flash blah blah onto 700mb CD...

But I have to wonder, I noticed there's CloneZilla server... how's that work? I have a 5 port 10/100 switch that I test computers on... along with a spare P4 1gb HP desktop that I use for testing... Is it possible I could use that computer as the server and push down the image via ethernet??
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Old 12-04-2008, 02:26 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: How can I make an image of a HDD installation?

You could. I cant tell you for sure. I have never had the need to try the Server version cause my systems that i all work with can use the DVD's i create.

If there is a Network install option then you might be able to do that. But you will have to do Sysprep on the XP image first. So that you can do a network install. It will still require a Disc inserted into the PC to get it to give you the option for a network install.

At least if memory serves me right...
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Old 12-04-2008, 02:30 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: How can I make an image of a HDD installation?

I've used Norton Ghost on a 16 port switch with PXE boot before. I remember having to put the CD in each computer to get it to boot to the network.

But, besides that, is that all that I should be watching out for? Do the computers have to "support" PXE boot or should all computers be able to boot off of a PXE CD?

This really would be nice to have 3 or 4 computers of completely different manufacturers getting pushed the exact same image at once.
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Old 12-04-2008, 02:32 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: How can I make an image of a HDD installation?

In all honesty i cant tell you a honest answer. The machines that have the different manufacturers might not accept the image. The hardware profiles can be too different for them to work. There are so many variables to take into account that to say Yes would be shooting myself in the foot. Cause it might work and it might not.

The only thing i can say is that it is a option to try. If it works great. If not you will have to find a way to use a different image.
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Old 12-04-2008, 03:08 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: How can I make an image of a HDD installation?

Yeah... that's one thing I started to think about. I mean, how different could a HDD cloning machine be from Clonezilla? Maybe it's the same deal? Maybe I'll run into the EXACT same troubles with this.

Either way, even if this doesn't work the way I want, it's still something that'll be usable because the cloning machine is often in use... and I can at least clone "like" computers there too...
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