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Message started by snowdude on Jul 21st, 2011 at 12:59pm

Title: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 21st, 2011 at 12:59pm
Hi, I am trying to set up a flash drive to use with many less experienced users that would otherwise take hours to walk through the process of ghosting in our conventional CD boot with USB drive containing the image.  My goal is to have flash drives that we can mail to users and all that would be required would be for them to stick the drive into their computer and, with no instructions besides booting from USB, ghost an image onto their machine.

My process so far was to use ghost boot wizard to put a typical PC-DOS ghost boot package onto a USB, I then plugged that into my computer and created a folder called Base which contains my image files, inside that folder is 5 files, Base.gho, Base0001.ghs, Base0002.ghs etc.

I then edited the autoexec.bat to read as follows:

Code:
@echo off
SET TZ=GHO+08:00
if exist MOUSE.COM MOUSE.COM
echo Loading Ghost...
rem CD \GHOST
\ghost\ghost.exe -clone,mode=load,src=\Base\Base.gho,dst=1 -sure -quiet -auto -rb


This is the current revision after many attempts at fixing an Error Code 684 error I keep getting that says my file preservation metadata file conflicts with the location of the image destination or something like that.  It suggests I use -pfile switch to set a new location for the file, I have tried multiple locations on the USB drive, I have looked at these forums for answers as well as many google searches and found a few responses but none that got solved or at least not in a way that has fixed my errors.  If you need any more information to try and help please let me know.  I am using GSS v11.5 and the machines so far have all been HP.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 21st, 2011 at 6:21pm
snowdude,

I can get the auto restore to start but the restores fails at around 80%. The image verifies OK.

This is my autoexec.bat

Code:
@echo off
set path=C:\;C:\Ghost
ctmouse.exe
ghost.exe -clone,mode=load,src=C:\Base\Base.gho,dst=2 -sure


The dst is 2 (your USB flash drive is 1)

See if it works on your hardware. I didn't use the Ghost wizard to create my bootable USB flash drive. I used the HP tool and added DOS files.

One of my interests is auto restores but I almost exclusively use TeraByte apps. I have about 10 auto restore methods. A double click and the restore happens.
     

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by NightOwl on Jul 22nd, 2011 at 11:27am
Today, 7/22/2011--there are 613 views of this thread--and it was only initially posted yesterday!

Really, is that correct?!  Wow!

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 22nd, 2011 at 1:41pm
thanks that made quite a bit of progress, however I am still running into problems, it now starts the image fine and gets to about 25% and then asks for the next image span. Here is my autoexec.bat:


Code:
@echo off
set path=C:\;C:\Ghost
SET TZ=GHO+08:00
if exist MOUSE.COM MOUSE.COM
echo Loading Ghost...
\ghost\ghost.exe -clone,mode=load,src=C:\V2.071511.gho,dst=2 -sure


I have tried this same autoexec with -auto -quiet -rb added to the switches, what am I doing wrong?

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 22nd, 2011 at 3:23pm
I tried changing the switches to -rb -batch to get it to reboot afterwards and it gets to the same about 25% and goes back to dos and shows "ABORT: 651, Unable to locate next span. Operation aborted at user request."

How do I get ghost to automatically locate the next spans like it does when you image it normally? I direct its source to the .gho file, I tried renaming this to Base.gho then the spans to Base001.ghs Base002.ghs etc, I've tried them in a folder as well as on the root of the flash drive. What am I missing?

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 22nd, 2011 at 5:29pm
@ snowdude

I've seen several errors. Anywhere between 30 to 80%. Error 546, Memory allocation error, ?

My image is only 700 MB so it's not spanned. It restores if it's on a HD but not on the flash drive. I've tried about six times. Maybe Ghost needs to run in a ramdrive with more memory but I'm just guessing.

I just tried a manual restore of the image on the flash drive. It succeeded.
I tried an auto restore without a mouse or any switches and it succeeded. I had to answer "Yes" twice.
I tried an auto restore with a mouse but no switches. It failed at 10% with a Memory allocation error.

Can you try a restore without a mouse or switches?


Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 22nd, 2011 at 5:47pm
Another auto success with no mouse and no switches.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 22nd, 2011 at 6:42pm
Ok so I just kicked off a restore without a mouse driver loaded and without switches, so far so good, however I have no way of getting away with smaller images, the current image I am testing with is 8.2gb and its not our smallest. As far as I understand this means there is no way to get around spanning when the image is that large. If I can maybe that would fix the problem? The autorestore with no mouse and no switches still asks for the next image span which is currently no better then when I had the switches and mouse. I am leaving the office for the day and will not be back til Monday and will be unable work on this until then. I will be back on this forum Monday and testing again. Thanks for your help Brian, if your around on Monday I'd appreciate some more help.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 22nd, 2011 at 6:50pm
@ snowdude

What method have you been using that has proved successful on the clients' computers?

Edit... I tried running ghost.exe in a ramdrive but the auto restore failed.

If you have the flash drive formatted as NTFS can you have a non spanned .gho?

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 22nd, 2011 at 8:36pm
So far we have successfully restored tons of computers using a seperate network with a server and client computers that we boot off of ghost boot disks set up for pc-dos using ghost boot wizard. The image files are located on the server, spanned, which is where i got the image that i copied onto the flash drive. We also have successfully booted off of the same ghost boot disk with a flash drive containing just the image needed plugged into the computer and manually select the image .gho file. Doing it this way we still never have to deal with choosing the next span.

As for the flash drive, ghost boot wizard seems to automatically format the drive as FAT without an option to change that. If you know how to create a bootable flash drive in NTFS format that works I would be happy to give that a shot on Monday, also, is there any way to combine spanned images into a single image or would I have to image a computer with that image, and then create a new image of that computer with settings to not span the image?

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 22nd, 2011 at 9:40pm
I must have been half asleep when I made the suggestion about NTFS.

Did you say you can do this, manually? Boot from a Ghost disk and restore an image on a separate flash drive? Can that be automated? Having the image on the Ghost boot disk seems to be our problem.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 23rd, 2011 at 1:29am
@ snowdude

I think I've nailed it. This works every-time and it's four times faster than DOS ghost on my test computer.

Use a WinPE USB flash drive with ghost32.exe. Have the ghost script run automatically on startup. On completion of the restore, the client will need to manually shutdown the WinPE otherwise another restore would take place if the computer restarted with the USB flash drive still present.

I used this script..


Code:
set path=F:\user_files\brian
start ghost32 -clone,mode=load,src=F:\user_files\test.gho,dst=1 -sure


You must use the correct drive letter for the USB flash drive.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 23rd, 2011 at 5:36pm
@ NightOwl


Quote:
there are 613 views of this thread--and it was only initially posted yesterday!


It seems too large for the short period of time.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by NightOwl on Jul 24th, 2011 at 10:14am
@ snowdude

This thread appears to be a *moving target*--the test parameters keep changing!  I understand that when testing and trying to resolve a problem, we change what we have tried previously.  But, we here in cyberspace can not *see* all the changes you have made--so we are at a distinct disadvantage in trying to figure out what's going on!

Why did I say the above?

In you original post:


Quote:
I then plugged that into my computer and created a folder called Base which contains my image files, inside that folder is 5 files, Base.gho, Base0001.ghs, Base0002.ghs etc.

and


Quote:
I then plugged that into my computer and created a folder called Base which contains my image files, inside that folder is 5 files, Base.gho, Base0001.ghs, Base0002.ghs etc.


In reply #3--a *new* ghost file name!  And, it's 9 characters in length--DOS requires 8 dot 3 formats:


Quote:
src=C:\V2.071511.gho


In reply #4, the *.ghs* file naming has changed:


Quote:
I tried renaming this to Base.gho then the spans to Base001.ghs Base002.ghs etc



Quote:
How do I get ghost to automatically locate the next spans like it does when you image it normally? I direct its source to the .gho file, I tried renaming this to Base.gho then the spans to Base001.ghs Base002.ghs etc, I've tried them in a folder as well as on the root of the flash drive. What am I missing?

You might be interested in the results found in this thread:  Asking for next span file

Did you rename the files so they do not follow Ghost's naming convention for spanned files?  Does this help with Ghost finding the next spanned file correctly?


Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by NightOwl on Jul 24th, 2011 at 10:29am
@ Brian


Quote:
I tried an auto restore with a mouse but no switches. It failed at 10% with a Memory allocation error.

Can you try a restore without a mouse or switches?

and:


Quote:
I tried an auto restore without a mouse or any switches and it succeeded.

Interesting!  I've not personally run into this issue before when I have loaded a mouse driver. 

Any chance you still have the *config.sys* and *autoexec.bat* files you used that generated this problem?

What DOS mouse driver are you using--there are any number of them out there?

Is the mouse a PS/1 serial port, or USB type?  Does the system have *legacy USB support* enabled if a USB mouse?


Quote:
I tried an auto restore without a mouse or any switches and it succeeded. I had to answer "Yes" twice.


The *-sure* switch should eliminate the need to answer *Yes* twice--but, having to answer *Yes* twice may only apply to Ghost 2003--Corporate Ghost may behave differently--not entirely sure about that, however.

But, if it is an *automated* procedure, then loading a DOS mouse driver should be unnecessary!

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by NightOwl on Jul 24th, 2011 at 10:41am
@ Brian


Quote:
Use a WinPE USB flash drive with ghost32.exe. Have the ghost script run automatically on startup. On completion of the restore, the client will need to manually shutdown the WinPE otherwise another restore would take place if the computer restarted with the USB flash drive still present.

One might be able to avoid this--but, it does require a little *pre-planning*, and some slight expertise on the user's part!

Set the BIOS boot priority so the system boots from the HDD before the USB flash drive--now a re-boot will not run the restore routine on the flash drive upon re-boot.

But, now the client has to know how to bring up the *boot menu* during initial boot to start the restore process (often times it's the F12 key--but on one of my systems it's the F8 key!).  Manually select the USB flash drive, and the boot then by-passes the BIOS boot sequence--but when the system re-boots, it will follow the BIOS boot sequence and go to Windows and not to the USB flash drive.  When the client returns--just pull out the flash drive!

This technique should also work with a floppy disk, or boot CD or DVD.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 24th, 2011 at 4:44pm
@ NightOwl
My autoexec.bat is in Reply #1. Here is the config.sys


Code:
DEVICE=C:\DOS\HIMEM.SYS /testmem:off
DOS=HIGH,UMB
FILES=30
buffers=10


I was using ctmouse.exe but as you mentioned, a mouse isn't needed for an auto procedure. The actual mouse was PS/2.

I was using the ghost32.exe from Ghost 10. I tried two WinPE. A TeraByte Unlimited one made for Image for Windows and adapted by me. The other was Active@ Boot Disk. Both support running a startup script and are Win7 based. A friend has Ghost 11.5 and let me play with his computer. It can make a WinPE boot disk and you can add your startup script while making the boot disk. If you get the startup script wrong (eg incorrect drive letters) then you can easily edit start.bat in the "ghost" folder on the flash drive. You don't have to build another boot disk. The WinPE is Vista based.

As far as drive letters are concerned, this is a quick observation and may not be correct. With a Win7 based WinPE, if you have two HD partitions and an optical drive the USB flash drive will be assigned F: drive. With a Vista based WinPE the USB flash drive will be assigned E: drive.


Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 25th, 2011 at 1:07pm
My config.sys file doesn't look like that at all, I also don't have a dos folder on this flash drive or anything called himem.sys, do I need that? I have attached a screenshot of the contents of my flash drive so you guys have a better understanding of what I'm working with. The Ghost folder only contains the ghost.exe file. I am going to give this set up one more shot before trying WinPE. The .ghs span files in my most recent attempt were named incorrectly, thanks for pointing that out, as you can see I have fixed them, the original names were the V2.7 etc that I gave you earlier as that is how they are named on our servers, I have changed them to the base# format to more easily keep track of them and modify them.
Capture.PNG (40 KB | 295 )

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 25th, 2011 at 1:48pm
The setup I just used worked, included -sure and -rb into the switches and it went all the way through from start to finish with no user intervention required, rebooted and is now sitting at the login screen. Thanks for all the help, this will really help us out.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 25th, 2011 at 7:50pm
@ snowdude

I'm glad it is working. If you get a chance, try the WinPE method. The restore was over four times faster than DOS in my test computer.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by NightOwl on Jul 26th, 2011 at 10:08am
@ snowdude


Quote:
My config.sys file doesn't look like that at all, I also don't have a dos folder on this flash drive or anything called himem.sys, do I need that?

Probably not.  Some DOS boot disks (discs) sometimes put the DOS drivers in a separate sub-directory for organizational purposes (just like Ghost's Boot Wizard often puts the *ghost.exe* in its own *Ghost* sub-directory.  In Ghost 2003, if you add USB DOS supporting drivers, the Boot Wizard puts the USB drivers in their own *USB* sub-directory as well!  And, DOS network drivers (I think--I haven't played with that in a long time) are put in a *Net* sub-directory.


Quote:
himem.sys

Again, probably not necessary.

Quoting from Vernon Frazee's *MS-DOS v6.22 Help: Command Reference* for
*himem.sys*


Quote:
HIMEM is an extended-memory manager--a program that coordinates the use of
your computer's extended memory, including the high memory area (HMA), so
that no two applications or device drivers use the same memory at the same
time.


And:


Quote:
HIMEM or another XMS driver must be loaded in order to load MS-DOS into the
high memory area (HMA). You load MS-DOS into the HMA by using the DOS=HIGH
command in your CONFIG.SYS file.

If you are not short on the first 640 MB of low memory (RAM) to run you DOS program and any loaded drivers, and if there are no two programs attempting to use the same memory at the same time (usually causing conflicts and system crashes), then you can do without the *himem.sys*.

If you want to use the DOS *EMM386.EXE* program, you must load *himem.sys* first.  Quoting form the *emm386.exe* page:


Quote:
Provides access to the upper memory area and uses extended memory to
simulate expanded memory. This device driver must be loaded by a <DEVICE>
command in your CONFIG.SYS file

and:


Quote:
EMM386 uses extended memory to simulate expanded memory for programs that
can use expanded memory. EMM386 also makes it possible to load programs and
device drivers into upper memory blocks (UMBs).

For example--loading part of DOS into the UMBs.  Again, this can help free up RAM in the first 640 MB used by DOS programs (such as Ghost and other loaded drivers).


Quote:
My config.sys file doesn't look like that at all.......I have attached a screenshot of the contents of my flash drive so you guys have a better understanding of what I'm working with

You previously shared what was in *autoexec.bat*--can you share what's in *config.sys*?


Quote:
The setup I just used worked, included -sure and -rb into the switches and it went all the way through from start to finish with no user intervention required, rebooted and is now sitting at the login screen.

Glad to hear it's working!  Could you share how you set things up so you ended up at the *login screen*--was that without *user intervention* and the system didn't re-boot to the USB flash drive?


Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by NightOwl on Jul 26th, 2011 at 10:27am
@ Brian


Quote:
try the WinPE method. The restore was over four times faster than DOS in my test computer

Okay--I'm interested!


Quote:
I was using the ghost32.exe from Ghost 10. I tried two WinPE. A TeraByte Unlimited one made for Image for Windows and adapted by me. The other was Active@ Boot Disk. Both support running a startup script and are Win7 based. A friend has Ghost 11.5 and let me play with his computer. It can make a WinPE boot disk and you can add your startup script while making the boot disk. If you get the startup script wrong (eg incorrect drive letters) then you can easily edit start.bat in the "ghost" folder on the flash drive. You don't have to build another boot disk. The WinPE is Vista based.

So, *ghost32.exe* form Ghost 10 did not work?  And the two WinPE's also did not work (that are Win7 based)?  You had to use your friend's Ghost 11.5 boot wizard that creates a Ghost 11.5 friendly WinPE, and allowed you to add your script during creation?

So *average me* won't be able to build a WinPE based boot flash drive unless I have a friend who uses Ghost 11.5 on a Vista system?

Or, did you mean all those options worked?


Quote:
Active@ Boot Disk

That looks *pricey*--$80.00 to $110.00!


Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 26th, 2011 at 4:00pm
@ NightOwl


NightOwl wrote on Jul 26th, 2011 at 10:27am:
So, *ghost32.exe* form Ghost 10 did not work?And the two WinPE's also did not work (that are Win7 based)? 


No, both WinPEs worked fine. Just as well as the official Ghost 11.5.

Active@ Boot Disk has a demo download. The contained apps (which you don't want to use anyway) are in crippled mode but the WinPE disk that you create is fantastic. Best I've seen. You can add your own files during the build and you can add your own startup script during the build (must be a .cmd file).

http://www.lsoft.net/bootdisk.aspx#download

You can create a CD or USB flash drive. With the latter you can edit your startup script directly on the flash drive if you have made a mistake. Easier then building another boot disk although that is simple. So *average me* should be almost ready to go.


I read about the Ghost 11.5 USB boot disk. If you choose MS-DOS you only get a 2 GB partition on the flash drive. Snowdude has to use PC-DOS because it can use the full size of the flash drive. Here is config.sys


Code:
LASTDRIVE = Z





Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 27th, 2011 at 12:16am
@ NightOwl

As an aside, you can image the Active@ flash drive partition with Image for Windows, restore the image to your HD and boot the Active@ partition with BootIt. The Active@ partition can be used for auto restores, initiated from Windows. No boot disk is needed. You could use IFW or ghost32.exe in the Active@ partition.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 28th, 2011 at 12:59pm
I have been reading your responses and having probably a little too much fun with my automated ghost flash drive, building menu's using choice commands and even using ansi to make some interesting looking screens, this is great as it allows us to put company logo and our IT support number up on the top of the screen at all times and is working perfectly in the first machine I tested this with.

However a computer came my way to image using our more typical techniques, however due to network card issues this computer was unable to ghost over our secondary network as we usually do so I figured I would use the opportunity to ghost it with my new toy. Once ghost had loaded up and a number of attempts at figuring out why, it popped up with an error message asking me to put the ghosterr.txt somewhere, initially suggesting A:/ however its a modern laptop so no floppy drive, tried changing it to C:/ with no success. I then realized that it had lost all sight of the USB flash drive and this was the culprit. Cancelling out of that ghosterr.txt redirection window brought me back to a dos prompt screen saying error 10100 or something and then saying "Abort, Retry, or Fail?" the dos prompt continued to say C:\ even though it could not see the drive there but no commands could be executed anymore.

I am now testing with a WinPE boot method on a flash drive and have attempted to edit the start.bat but with no luck. I have added switches and the like to the start ghost32.exe line of the batch file but all that happens when the computer boots off the drive is a command prompt that says X:\windows\system32> and then brings up the ghost window but with no automation at all. I have tried to look for the X:\windows\system32 location on the flash drive as it is launching something called "startnet.cmd" which I believe is not scripted correctly for what I want but am not able to find it. What am I doing wrong?

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 28th, 2011 at 3:16pm
@ snowdude

Here is my start.bat


Code:
set path=%path%;x:\ghost
x:
cd \ghost
rem --- This will create primary OS drive configuration ---
ghost32.exe /setosdrives /blind >> x:\ghost\startlog.txt
start ghost32.exe -clone,mode=load,src=E:\backup\bjk.gho,dst=1 -sure


Can you post your start.bat?

startnet.cmd is in system32 of boot.wim. As you know, something like DISM needs to be used to mount boot.wim before you can see the contents. Here is the contents of my startnet.cmd which is one line to "Initialize WinPE".


Code:
wpeinit



Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 28th, 2011 at 3:33pm
Okay, well since my post I have made some progress, I am using gimagex v2 to view the boot.wim and was able to view/edit the startnet.cmd files, I didn't know what wpeinit was so I tried to remove it and that is probably causing some of the errors I am having now, now the startnet.cmd consists of just @echo off and call C:\ghost\start.bat, what is happening now is when I boot off the drive it launches the startnet.cmd but says "The system cannot find the drive specified" then gives me a X:\windows\system32> command prompt, from there i can type in the exact same code as in the startnet.cmd and launch as desired.

My start.bat also looks different, the hard drive in this laptop I am testing on is completely fresh, unless adding wpeinit fixes this problem diskpart doesn't even see the internal hard drive, just a cd drive and the flash drive, which means my flash drive is labeled C: not E: as in yours. Also I changed the directory the start.bat accesses to C: instead of X:, whats the difference? If i plug the flash drive into my computer to edit the files, without mounting the .wim, am I still editing the one that gets loaded to X:\ghost\ ? Here are my files as of right now, I will add wpeinit to the first line of my startnet one now and test that.

Start.bat:

Code:
@echo off
set path=C:\;C:\Ghost
pause

c:
cd \ghost
rem --- This will create primary OS drive configuration ---
ghost32.exe /setosdrives /blind >> x:\ghost\startlog.txt
start ghost32.exe -clone,mode=load,src=C:\image\,dst=2 -sure -fx & exit
color 84 & echo Error


Startnet.cmd

Code:
@echo off
color 80
echo Launching AutoGhost... One Moment Please...
call C:\ghost\start.cmd | color 84 & echo Sorry, there has been an Unexpected Error.
echo Have a Nice Day.
exit


Lastly, using gimagex I have been loading image 1 and image 2 of boot.wim, the forum post that suggested me to use gimagex was from a ghost user in the same situation and he said this was how he solved a problem he encountered, is there an easier way?

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 28th, 2011 at 3:42pm
@ snowdude

Have a look at this...


snowdude wrote on Jul 28th, 2011 at 3:33pm:
src=C:\image\,dst=2


You don't have a .gho file and the dst should now be 1 (it is 2 in DOS but 1 in WinPE)

I have a TeraByte Unlimited WinPE where I have removed the wpeinit line. Apart from the WinPE loading 20 seconds faster, it works the same. Strange.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 28th, 2011 at 3:51pm
Yeah I know about the lack of .gho file, was testing to see if you specified a folder it would just look for a .gho file, that way it would be easier to swap images in and out for different situations without having to edit code, but my current problems were before it even got into ghost so I have been trying to fix them one at a time as I go.

So I launched the flash drive again and it loaded WinPE and is sitting at a cmd window titled X:\windows\system32\cmd.exe - startnet.cmd, there is no writing on the screen just a blinking cursor, it is unresponsive, key presses do nothing, not even Ctrl C, I can use the mouse but nothing is happening. Any ideas?

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 28th, 2011 at 3:51pm

snowdude wrote on Jul 28th, 2011 at 3:33pm:
Also I changed the directory the start.bat accesses to C: instead of X:, whats the difference? If i plug the flash drive into my computer to edit the files, without mounting the .wim, am I still editing the one that gets loaded to X:\ghost\ ?


The X: drive is the "mounted" boot.wim. (I've always ignored it). When you edit start.bat on your flash drive this will not be reflected in the X: drive.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 28th, 2011 at 3:54pm

snowdude wrote on Jul 28th, 2011 at 3:51pm:
is sitting at a cmd window titled X:\windows\system32\cmd.exe - startnet.cmd, there is no writing on the screen just a blinking cursor, it is unresponsive


Try my startnet.cmd

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 28th, 2011 at 4:00pm
Ok, as soon as I posted that my Ctrl C finally registered and I told it not to terminate batch job, it finally told me "Launching AutoGhost... One Moment Please..." from my startnet.cmd, then it said "The process tried to write to a nonexistent pipe."

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 28th, 2011 at 4:10pm
I accidently tried to unmount the image at index 1 of boot.wim while I still had startnet.cmd open in notepad and now its not letting me mount it again and I have no way of editing the startnet.cmd in it... Do I have to reformat and re-ghost boot wizard this flash drive?

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 28th, 2011 at 4:13pm

snowdude wrote on Jul 28th, 2011 at 4:10pm:
Do I have to reformat and re-ghost boot wizard this flash drive? 


I'm not sure. If you remove and reinsert your flash drive can you mount boot.wim.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 28th, 2011 at 4:23pm
Tried that, still not able to. Gonna try rebooting my computer, if that doesn't work I will save the start.bat and startnet.cmd files to my computer, reformat the flashdrive, and put em back on, that should get me back to where I was.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 28th, 2011 at 4:28pm
That will give you the default startnet.cmd and save a boot.wim mount. Then you just have to edit start.bat.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 28th, 2011 at 4:38pm
Rebooting didn't work, wow that might be a first... lol. Anyways I am gonna go reformat/ghost boot wizard this flash drive, so when its done both of my startnet.cmd files will be the default wpeinit or whatever right? But I still have to mount the boot.wim and go edit the start.bat in the ghost folder on image 2 right?

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 28th, 2011 at 4:44pm
No, you don't need to mount boot.wim at all. Just edit start.bat in the ghost folder on the flash drive. Easy.

I don't understand what you mean by image 2.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 28th, 2011 at 4:53pm
Editing start.bat, the one inside the ghost folder on the flash drive, the one you are suggesting I edit, doesn't change anything when I boot off the flash drive, I will try it again with this fresh flash drive but simply editing the start.bat and adding switches etc didn't change the way ghost behaved when I launched it. It wasn't until I edited the startnet.cmd to point to the one on the C:\ drive rather then the one on the X:\ drive did it seem to have any effect. As for the image 2, using gimagex to mount the boot.wim file there are 2 images to mount, image 1 just has program files/data users and windows folders, image 2 has those as well as the ghost folder. The forum I looked into earlier the OP said that when he edited just the default image it errored out on him and wasn't able to boot into WinPE at all, he had to edit both.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 28th, 2011 at 4:58pm
@ snowdude

I can't help much at present as my test computer won't boot from either Symantec flash drive. No idea why.

When I created the WinPE I edited the start.bat prior to the build so the "correct" start.bat was created in the ghost folder. I'm pretty sure I edited start.bat at a later stage and the edits worked.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 28th, 2011 at 5:06pm
Hmm, okay well I've already created the flash drive, I'm copying the image over to it now then I will do some testing with the start.bat in the basic flash drive versus the start.bat in the boot.wim, but the way I understand it, I don't need to go anywhere or change any code outside of start.bat? As it is it should launch on its own after startnet.cmd runs? And simply adding the switches to the "start ghost32.exe" line as I did with the ghost.exe in the PC-DOS version, with the exception of dst=1 instead of 2, will have the desired result?

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 28th, 2011 at 5:26pm
OK, got the flash drive booting again. What I said was correct. You just have to edit start.bat in the ghost folder. When I built the flash drive I added A43 file management to the build but it can be added after the build. I just booted from the flash drive, used A43 to edit start.bat (while in WinPE) and then ran start.bat. It worked.

Edit... If I remove my .gho file from the command line I get an error.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 28th, 2011 at 5:26pm
I may have sort of answered my own question, the unattend.xml file in the ghost folder, I had payed no attention to it before, but just out of curiosity this time I opened it and I don't know xml at all but from what I gather from my knowledge of C, Java, and other languages it seems as if this is telling it to run c:\ghost\copy.bat, which it sounds like will copy the batch and config files, so the "start.bat" from c:\ over to x:\, which when I edited the startnet.cmd files I removed the unattend.xml process so the copy.bat never ran so my start.bat didn't get replicated to x:\.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 28th, 2011 at 5:57pm
I may be misleading both of us. The flash drive that I just used was built with only "start ghost32.exe" in the command line. I edited start.bat while in WinPE and ran start.bat. The restore happened. Later I checked the USB flash drive in Windows and start.bat was what I created. But when I booted from the flash drive again, Ghost opened but the auto restore didn't happen. I checked ghost.bat in the ghost folder and it was correct but ghost.bat in the X:\ghost folder only showed "start ghost32.exe" in the command line.

It seems you have to enter the correct command line during the build. That's what I did with my first flash drive build.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 28th, 2011 at 6:06pm
Another complication that applies to me. Copy.bat and the xml file refer to C:\ghost but C:\ is my OS and there is no C:\ghost. So start.bat isn't getting copied to X:\

I guess that's why I need to have the correct start.bat in X:\ghost.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 28th, 2011 at 6:16pm
That complication will apply to you too. Your clients will have an OS so their flash drives will not be C: drive either and copy.bat won't work.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 28th, 2011 at 6:18pm
The problem I just found is that the startnet.cmd checks existence first for c:\ghost\unattend.xml, if that exists it runs its function, thats how it should work and that would keep any problems from happening, however, the startnet.cmd does not find c:\ghost\unattend.xml, for some reason it does not see it at startup and instead goes to "else if exist x:\ghost\unattend.xml", which does come back true, I tested this by echoing inside each and the echo came back from the section stating xml was in X. Once that happens ghost launches with the parameters given in start.bat inside the X:\ghost\ folder, which because unattends.xml in C:\ was not found, was not replicated with the start.bat you edit in "C:\". In my case C:\ is not my OS because there is nothing installed on the hard drive, as I explained earlier, and if I go into the cmd and type "type C:\ghost\unattend.xml" myself manually it spits out the text found in it correctly, would it have found that at the right time then start.bat would have been replicated and the process would have happened as desired.

I have 2 fixes in mind... one would be to edit the start.bat in x: to also check for C:\ghost\unattend.xml which would make the process happen later which may find it, or simply have start.bat in x: just check existance of C:\ghost\start.bat and run it if it finds it.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 28th, 2011 at 6:26pm
I think the easiest way is to have the correct command line when you are building the WinPE. No editing needed.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Jul 28th, 2011 at 6:50pm
you can edit that command line, i was able to do it with gimagex which keeps only working for a few mount/dismounts, but after that you can use the A43 thing you suggested to edit it while in WinPE, I have fixed some last things in my start.bat on the c:\ and I think once it loads it should work. About the volume label issue, I think I know how to work around that, first option would be to mount the boot.wim and put the image files into it, however that would significantly increase the size and I know almost nothing about .wim but that would probably at the very least vastly increase the time it takes to load, or run "wpeinit" which is already significant. The other option would be to build a test into the start.bat that checks for existance of C:\ghost\xxx.gho, and put that into a for loop and check C:\ through H:\ or something, it could then set a variable named drive to the drive letter with it, then use that variable as a part of the path, like src=%DRIVE%\ghost\xxx.gho

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 28th, 2011 at 6:56pm

snowdude wrote on Jul 28th, 2011 at 6:50pm:
like src=%DRIVE%\ghost\xxx.gho 


Interesting.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 28th, 2011 at 9:45pm
Also interesting is you can delete the entire ghost folder from the flash drive and the auto restore still happens. No wonder editing start.bat caused confusion. It isn't necessary. This of course was my flash drive where I setup the correct command line during the WinPE build.

This is really strange because I can't find ghost32.exe on my flash drive and it's not in boot.wim yet it appears in X:\ghost when the flash drive boots and Ghost does run.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 29th, 2011 at 8:40pm
@ snowdude

In my WinPEs on the HD I don't like to use batch files in the X: drive (boot.wim) so these are the changes I've made to the Ghost flash drive. In the build stage I edited start.bat to


Code:
set path=%path%;x:\ghost

x:
cd \ghost
rem --- This will create primary OS drive configuration ---
ghost32.exe /setosdrives /blind >> x:\ghost\startlog.txt

if exist c:\backup\brian.cmd goto third
if exist d:\backup\brian.cmd goto fourth
if exist e:\backup\brian.cmd goto first
if exist f:\backup\brian.cmd goto second


:first
e:
cd backup
start e:\backup\brian.cmd
exit

:second
f:
cd backup
start f:\backup\brian.cmd
exit

:third
c:
cd backup
start c:\backup\brian.cmd
exit

:fourth
d:
cd backup
start d:\backup\brian.cmd
exit





The backup folder will contain

brian.cmd
A43 files (not essential)
bjk.gho


brian.cmd is


Code:
set path=x:\ghost
start ghost32.exe -clone,mode=load,src=bjk.gho,dst=1 -sure -rb


The auto restore works. It is easy to edit brian.cmd on the flash drive. My drive letter issue is fixed.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by NightOwl on Jul 30th, 2011 at 1:11am
@ Brian and @ snowdude

Whoosh, whoosh, whoosh, .....etc.

The sounds of concepts going right over my head!

I have not worked with bare bones WinPE--I thought it had a GUI like the screen shots I've seen of BartPE or like when I boot to Ghost 9 or 10's recovery environment (I think those are *versions* of WinPE, aren't they?)--but, now I'm getting the sense it is a command line interface--a glorified DOS prompt!  And, unless someone puts a *shell* over  the top of it--it's a blinking cursor......is that correct?!

Anyway, is the *X:* drive the *Ram drive* created by WinPE during boot?  I thought WinPE loaded itself into RAM--is that what the *X:* drive is?--the RAM Drive where WinPE is loaded?

Started wondering around looking at how to make a WinPE disc, and ran across this reference:  How to create a bootable Windows PE 3.0 USB drive--Part 1 .  Then wondered onto How to create a bootable Windows PE 3.0 USB drive--Part 2 .  Not sure, but in part two, the coding to ID which drive is the USB drive might be of some use if I understood some of the issue(s) discussed previously as you switch to other systems that may have a different drive letter assigned to the USB flash drive.



Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 30th, 2011 at 3:11am
@ NightOwl

Here is a WinPE you are licensed for. It runs the GUI of IFW.

http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/howto/tbwinpe_tutorial.htm

The final lines of its startnet.cmd are....


Code:
echo To exit WinPE and reboot the computer, remove the WinPE boot media and close
echo this Command Prompt window.
echo.
echo To exit WinPE and shutdown the computer, type 'shutdown' (without the quotes)
echo at the prompt and press ENTER.
echo.
echo To restart Image for Windows, type 'imagew' (without the quotes) at the
echo prompt and press ENTER.
echo.

:: Launch Image for Windows
cd \program files\ifw
start imagew



With all the WinPEs you can add your own portable apps. I like A43 to browse My Computer and to run apps.

http://www.alterion.us/a43/

In every WinPE there is boot.wim which can be edited using DISM, gimagex, etc. This is loaded as X: drive, the RAM drive. I prefer having my batch files outside of boot.wim as they are easier to edit than having to use DISM.

I'm studying your PStart at present.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 30th, 2011 at 6:16am
@ NightOwl

Thanks for that information. It led to another start.bat which works.


Code:
set path=%path%;x:\ghost

x:
cd \ghost
rem --- This will create primary OS drive configuration ---
ghost32.exe /setosdrives /blind >> x:\ghost\startlog.txt

for %%p in (c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z) do if exist %%p:\backup\ set w=%%p
%w%:
cd backup
brian.cmd

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Jul 31st, 2011 at 7:35pm
The advantage of this type of start.bat is you only need one WinPE. All clients get the "same" WinPE, only differing by the .gho and the .cmd. Both of which can be changed at any time using Windows Explorer.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by NightOwl on Aug 1st, 2011 at 2:06am
@ Brian

Thanks for that TeraByte reference.

I have one too many projects around the house for the moment--and I'm out of town for most of this next week--so my *free* time for computing is limited.

But, I really want to get this WinPE thing mastered.

So, I'll be back at this in about a week--then the questions will begin  ;) !




Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Aug 1st, 2011 at 5:35am
@ NightOwl

Start with the stock standard TeraByte one. It is the easiest but can be adapted to be quite complex.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by NightOwl on Aug 2nd, 2011 at 9:49am
@ Brian


Quote:
Start with the stock standard TeraByte one. It is the easiest but can be adapted to be quite complex.

Thanks for that suggestion.  It's the *how to adapt* the WinPE that appears to be the challenge!

I was Google searching Master Boot Utilities (MBR) for another project I'm working on, and one of my old favorites was near the top of the list--MBRWizard.  I started using it back when it was in the v1.5x days--and it was free.  v2.xx was still free, but now the v3.xx you have to pay for it before you can even try it:   MBRWizard Suite 3.0

But, what caught my eye was this:  MBRWizard Suite 3.0 and Windows Preinstallation Environment (WinPE) .  Part of the Suite is the MBRWizard Boot Builder .

But, these two pieces of software are *free*--and they might be usable with any ISO of WinPE:  KAPE WinPE Builder, and Bootsage Flash Builder

Still no time to actually play with this stuff until next week--but what do you think of these programs--any good or useful?


Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Aug 2nd, 2011 at 4:23pm
@ NightOwl


NightOwl wrote on Aug 2nd, 2011 at 9:49am:
It's the *how to adapt* the WinPE that appears to be the challenge!


I don't have experience with the apps you mentioned. I wasted a lot of time with an app called "WinBuilder". It always failed in the last few minutes of the build and I'm reluctant to try building further WinPEs now that I have a few that work.

As you are interested in adapting the WinPE, start with the "best of the best", Active@ Boot Disk that I've already mentioned. Install the software and build a USB flash drive or CD. I prefer USB as you can edit it later. Active@ includes many Windows apps. A file/folder Explorer, Networking, Registry Editor, Command Prompt, Check Disk, Internet Browser, AntiVirus Setup, Email, Load Driver, Notepad, Paint, Calculator, Disk Defragmenter, etc. (you will never use most of these)

I don't use plugins anymore. I just copy my portable apps to the User_Files folder and run the exe from Explorer. If you are interested in auto-running an app we can talk about it later.

MBRWiz and MBRWhisky both run in the User_Files folder.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Aug 8th, 2011 at 1:13pm
@ NightOwl

Here is another free WinPE that looks worthwhile. I downloaded it last night.

http://technomixer.blogspot.com/2011/08/wondershare-live-boot-2012-v701-license.html

http://www.wondershare.com/topic/giveaway-liveboot2012.html

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Aug 9th, 2011 at 11:16am
I ran into a few more problems along the way using WinPE however I got them fixed. In my startnet.cmd batch file I used a for loop and a variable for drive and used an if exists command to set %drv% to be the value of the flash drive. This way I could use paths such as %drv%/image/%img%.gho and %drv%/ghost/ghost32.exe etc. This solved the problem of existing OS on the hard drive and variations in the pre existing set up of the computer.  I had to run this for loop again after the ghost32.exe /setosdrives or whatever line, I don't have the batch code open right now but it was after that line that I had to recheck the flash drive letter as the ghost process had created a new system partition I guess which had pushed my flash drive up one letter from F:\ to G:\. Adding the check loop again fixed any breaks in the paths that the new system drive caused and now it works perfectly. The only thing now I would raelly like to be able to add would be an HTA page to create a simple UI our users could use rather then a command prompt window.  If anyone knows how to add HTA support to the ghost boot WinPE OS or knows of a simple WinPE ISO that already supports it that I could download that would be very helpful.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Aug 9th, 2011 at 3:06pm
@ snowdude


snowdude wrote on Aug 9th, 2011 at 11:16am:
I used a for loop and a variable for drive and used an if exists command to set %drv% to be the value of the flash drive. This way I could use paths such as %drv%/image/%img%.gho and %drv%/ghost/ghost32.exe etc. 


Interesting. I'd like to try that. Would you mind sharing your batch file?

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by NightOwl on Aug 10th, 2011 at 10:03am
@ Brian


Quote:
Here is another free WinPE that looks worthwhile. I downloaded it last night.

As is not unusual--life has complicated my free time for this week--I hope to be back to *experimenting* this weekend or next week--depends on how things happen in the next couple days!

Have to say, that website *bothered* me!  They want some pretty *personal* information in order to receive the *free* software.  Their privacy statement says they don't *sell* your information--but it says they may *share* the information with unspecified *partners*--exactly what does that mean?!  And, this is a Chinese based source--is there a way to vet these folks as being on the up and up--or do they have a *bad* reputation?

With WinPE, because you may have web access through the PE environment--I've always wondered what *phoning home* activity might be embedded in that PE OS?  When booting, does it have any access to one's home network--or do you have to set that up with appropriate network name and password--I suspect that must be true--but, once connected, what happens in the background?  And I'm not just wondering about this particular software--I've wondered that about the Ghost 9, 10, 12, 14 Recovery Environments--as well as other WinPE based sources!

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by NightOwl on Aug 10th, 2011 at 10:15am
@ snowdude


Quote:
I used a for loop and a variable for drive and used an if exists command to set %drv% to be the value of the flash drive. This way I could use paths such as %drv%/image/%img%.gho and %drv%/ghost/ghost32.exe etc. This solved the problem of existing OS on the hard drive and variations in the pre existing set up of the computer.  I had to run this for loop again after the ghost32.exe /setosdrives or whatever line, I don't have the batch code open right now but it was after that line that I had to recheck the flash drive letter as the ghost process had created a new system partition I guess which had pushed my flash drive up one letter from F:\ to G:\. Adding the check loop again fixed any breaks in the paths that the new system drive caused and now it works perfectly.

Just wondering, did you notice this reference, How to create a bootable Windows PE 3.0 USB drive--Part 2 , from my reply #52.  Would that coding help identify your USB flash drive drive letter?


Quote:
The only thing now I would raelly like to be able to add would be an HTA page to create a simple UI our users could use rather then a command prompt window.

I'm afraid I don't recognize your short-hand--could you translate that into something a little more basic?

I thought you wanted to create an automated restore--why are you now wanting to create a UI  and/or *command prompt* window for user interactions?  Have your *goals* changed?

Brain has been reporting *automated restores* that apparently do not need any *user inputs*--have you been unable to do the same?

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Aug 10th, 2011 at 5:17pm
@ NightOwl


NightOwl wrote on Aug 10th, 2011 at 10:03am:
but it says they may *share* the information with unspecified *partners*--exactly what does that mean?


That doesn't bother me. They want your email address to spam you so I just sign up with a throw away address.


NightOwl wrote on Aug 10th, 2011 at 10:03am:
When booting, does it have any access to one's home network--or do you have to set that up with appropriate network name and password-

It does have access to your network if your computer is connected to a router. Once the WinPE boots you are "on the internet". This applies to Active@ and the TeraByte WinPE too. Networking can be disabled and enabled manually if you desire. To disable networking, edit startnet.cmd in the the boot.wim. Comment out the wpeinit line. To enable networking after WinPE has loaded, run wpeutil initializenetwork.

I forgot to mention, Active@ has a choice of whether to activate networking or not. I choose "not" as the WinPE loads about 10 seconds faster. The default is "not".

I like Active@ better, much better. The Wondershare WinPE boots slowly and is difficult to automate but it can be done. It has a lot of apps which I'll probably never use. I'll keep the CD but it's unlikely I'll use it again.

The Ghost CDs don't automatically connect to your network. You have to set it up manually.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Aug 10th, 2011 at 5:58pm
@ NightOwl


NightOwl wrote on Aug 10th, 2011 at 10:15am:
this reference, How to create a bootable Windows PE 3.0 USB drive--Part 2 , from my reply #52. 


I made a WinPE from that reference. It loaded very slowly on my computer and wouldn't load at all if networking was disabled.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Aug 10th, 2011 at 6:12pm
@ NightOwl

I just noticed this...


Quote:
When you place an order on our website, your full name, email address, mailing address, phone number, credit card number, and credit card expiration date will be required. The information is used to complete the transaction and help us provide better support and services to you.


But to get the trial you only have to give your name (true or otherwise) and an email address (throw away).

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Aug 11th, 2011 at 6:18pm
my full batch file is no longer in one segment, the startnet.cmd simply contains wpeinit then code to search for my HTA, which by the way is a form of html that can be run on the local computer with all the same functionality as a html page plus some. Here is how i searched for my HTA:

Code:
set drv=NONE
:loopstart
for %%a in (C D E F G H I J) do (
           if exist %%a:\UI\AutoGhost.hta (
                 set drv=%%a
                 goto :loopend
           )
     )
if %drv%==NONE goto :loopstart
:loopend


It then launches the HTA which is a screen with the company logo and a few buttons which allow for automated imaging and rebooting of the computer. As well as a funny little clipart image of a ghost in a car for fun.

The HTA then uses VBScript coding to use the buttons to launch my new batch script "image.cmd" which has the same for loop but searches for base.gho instead, and then launches ghost32.exe to set the osdriveblinds, it then searches for base.gho again as the drive letter has now changed with the new system partition, then launches ghost32.exe to do the full image.

Originally my plan was an automated restore, and that is still the overall effect of this flash drive. However I felt it was a good idea to throw in a GUI for our inexperienced users and some failsafe abilities. My "Image" button on the HTA GUI screen launches a vbscript "msgbox" which prompts the user with a yes or no box that asks if they have backed up their data, if they answer yes it prompts the user again telling them that this process is unreversable, which if they click yes to continue it then launches the batch script which begins imaging with no further interaction needed. This gives the user some information so that we can send them the flash drive and simply let them boot from it and understand if they are ready to go through with the process or not.

The overall goal of an automated restore is still there, the user can simply click Image and Yes twice and they will end up with a freshly restored machine, while previously they would've have to have booted off a disc, then used the Ghost UI to navigate to the image file located on the flash drive and choose the correct partition to image to etc.  My GUI and scripts simplifly the process to a point where our users will be able to complete it themselves with virtually no need to contact us other then requesting the flash drive and likely backing up their data.

The flash drive is now working 100% on the hardware I have tested it on, I got HTA compatibility by building a fresh WinPE image using Microsoft WAIK and adding the HTA package to it.  Very easy process. Let me know if your interested in any of the UI or scripts related to it.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Aug 11th, 2011 at 8:03pm
@ snowdude

Thanks for that. It is fascinating. I'll decline your kind offer as I'm at the limit of my ability already.

One thing I'd like to know. The pros and cons of your experience with WinPE over DOS Ghost. I found WinPE restores were much faster than DOS restores on my test computer.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Aug 11th, 2011 at 9:22pm
The pros of WinPE I found to outweigh the cons in comparison to DOS, the pros of DOS were the loading speed, from the time you select it as the boot device to the point where you initiate the image is considerably faster then WinPE, however when booting into WinPE you have a lot more options as far as tools and utilities and the such, for example, mine loads up with a command prompt that displays "Loading AutoGhost... Please Wait...", it then loads wpeinit and my hta which takes a decent amount of time, most of which is spent loading wpeinit, however as soon as it is loaded i run a utility i downloaded that hides the command prompt, the hta then launches the ui then after the user clicks image it launches in a hidden process a command prompt that launches ghost, which is then displayed to the user so they can see the time remained etc. None of that would have been doable in DOS which is why I found WinPE to be more versatile.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by Brian on Aug 12th, 2011 at 1:37am
@ snowdude

I use a TeraByte Unlimited WinPE to do auto restores with Image for Windows. It loaded slowly until I removed the wpeinit line. I was surprised as it still worked and loaded 20 seconds faster. This was just a chance observation.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by snowdude on Aug 12th, 2011 at 12:38pm
I believe that at one time I removed wpeinit from my startnet.cmd but when I did that it was no longer able to find my flash drive I think, I will look more into it but that was my experience.

Title: Re: USB Automated Ghost Need Help
Post by tk421 on Feb 1st, 2012 at 9:27am
Great info here.  I configured a bootable USB to autoghost an image and used the information here to refine the process.  Thank you for the information.

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