Friday, November 5, 2010

Quick Response to SysPrep Question

We got a question on my (perhaps slightly snarky) article on how disappointing SQL 2008 R2 SysPrep is, regarding Windows 2008 R2 SysPrep.

Question from Annonymous is:
I'm trying to use sysprepped 2008R2 Express Editions so that each of my developers can get a local copy of SQL Server to test code as part of their workstation baseline.

The issue I have with it, is that even on a properly Prepared image, the CompleteImage phase doesn't appear to work during the "cmdlines.txt" portion of Windows Mini-Setup. Instead, the setup.exe silently dies, and the even log points to errors resolving the C Runtime library (which appears to be properly installed under WinSxS).

If the Sysprep functions do not work DURING sysprep then they're useless to me. If I, as an admin, have to log on to each workstation/server after loading the image, then there's no point in providing automation functions.

I'm passing on Benj's answer since he's the expert on Windows SysPrep.

Benj suggests setting it to autologin once, and running SQL Setup/Complete Image during the guirunonce phase.

I'll post my non-SysPrep steps for creating a SQL 2008 R2 VMware template soon.

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