Book Image

Mastering the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit

By : Jeff Stokes, Manuel Singer
Book Image

Mastering the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit

By: Jeff Stokes, Manuel Singer

Overview of this book

Topic The Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) provides a comprehensive collection of tools, processes, and guidance for automating desktop and server deployments. It considerably reduces deployment time and standardizes desktop and server images. Moreover, MDT offers improved security and ongoing configuration management. Microsoft Deployment Toolkit is the official supported method of creating and customizing Windows images for deployment. Description: Starting from scratch, this book walks you through the MDT setup, task sequence creation, and image deployment steps in detail. Breaking down the various MDT concepts, this book will give you a thorough understanding of the deployment process. Beginning with imaging concepts and theory, you will go on to build a Microsoft Deployment Toolkit environment. You will understand the intricacies of customizing the default user profile in different versions of Windows. Driver handling can be a challenge for larger organizations; we’ll cover various driver concepts including mandatory driver profiles. ]Other important topics like the User State Migration Tool (USMT), configuration of XML files, and how to troubleshoot the USMT are also discussed in the book. We will cover the verifier and Windows Performance Toolkit for image validation scenarios. Furthermore, you will learn about MDT web frontend implementation as well as how to utilize the database capabilities of MDT for deeper deployment options. We’ll wrap it all up with some links to resources for more information, blogs to watch, and useful Twitter handles.
Table of Contents (18 chapters)
Mastering the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit
About the Authors
About the Reviewers

MDT Configuration Database step by step

The entire purpose of the MDT Configuration Database is to make your deployments more dynamic and your CustomSettings.ini less complex. As dynamic has many different meanings, let's define dynamic a little bit. When using CustomSettings.ini for configuration and selections of task sequence, you need to hardcode everything. And every change of CustomSettings.ini means in effect rebuilding your media or, if using PXE and share, updating all shares.

If you are using MDT just to build your golden image or in a small test lab scenario, this disadvantage can be small enough. But as soon as you think about productive use/rollout, you should think twice before using MDT without the SQL database.

With the MDT database you can apply different customizations for different groups of computers based on the computer's hardware, such as the MAC address, its physical location, or manufacturer and model.

Furthermore, a configuration database gives you the ability to assign...