Sunday, 24 July 2016

E2B v1.82SDIe Beta with WSUS Offline Update support

This new version includes support for the WSUS Offline Update utility.

You can download and extract WSUS Offline Update to the \_ISO\WINDOWS\INSTALLS\wsusoffline folder of your USB drive and then run updategenerator.exe - pick the OS's you want to support - e.g. Win 8.1 x86 & x64, Win 10 x86 and x64 - and then download the updates (this may take quite a while!).

If you already have WSUS OU + updates somewhere, just copy the whole wsusoffline folder to the E2B USB drive.

The current SDI_CHOCO config files are set up to copy the wsusoffline\client folder to the target hard disk, but only if the file:      \_ISO\WINDOWS\INSTALLS\wsusoffline\client\cmd\DoUpdate.cmd
is found on the USB drive. This is a standard WSUS OU file and should be present.

Note that only the correct client update folder is copied to the target hard disk by SDI_CHOCO.cmd. For instance, if you are installing Windows 10 x64, then the Win7, Win10 x86, Win8.1 x86 and Win8.1 x64 update folders are excluded.

Only Win8.1 and Win10 are fully supported by E2B however. Windows 7 should work, but E2B will copy the entire wsusoffline\client folder across to the hard disk. TBH, I haven't tested Win7 at all!

The startup.cmd file runs on first user logon and will run the WSUS DoUpdate.cmd file from the C: drive, to install the Windows updates that were copied previously.

Note: You may like to add a Windows restart to the end of the startup.cmd file so that Windows Updates are done automatically.

This means that you are able to remove the USB drive at the end of the first phase (as prompted).

So we now have a mechanism for installing Windows 8.1/10 from an ISO with drivers, applications and Windows Updates. Although the app installation uses choco which requires an internet connection, you can add application packages instead of using choco. You can also add your own hardware drivers for specific machines.

Note that this is not a 'professional' installation system however, there is no error checking. For instance, if a choco package is not available at any particular time or fails to install, the build will still complete. Also, you may get a different version of an application today from the one you got yesterday if the choco server has been updated. Also, several WSUS update passes may be required. So you need to check the log files in the C:\Temp folder after a build and perhaps run C:\DRIVERS\wsusoffline\client\cmd\DoUpdate.cmd (run as admin) a few more times.

Conversely, the Snappy Drivers and the WSUS packages will not auto-update - you must do that yourself manually.