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Whats up with PC Restore in R2 ? I have to install stuff.


diehard
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Using Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials to backup PC's is as is was in all previous versions, however when it comes to creating a PC Restore key, the server says I'm missing some stuff and have to install software. What gives ?

 

 

"Cannot find Windows Preinstall Environment image " I see this under the Client Restore Service Tab ( new tab) in the Client computer backup settings and tools windows.

 

Ok, So I'm downloading and installing......

 

The drama continues. Clicked on START... Customizing WinPE images.....

 

Ok, it installed. But when I went to create the USB thumb drive, it fails when trying to format it. I also notice that it requires a 8GB thumb drive instead of the 512MB or more needed in WHS2011.

 

UPDATE:

FIXED, I had to 1st have the USB thumb drive formatted NTFS before running the wizard.

Then next step will be to confirm that a Full PC Restore works.

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Interesting saga.  Will have to give it a shot later today and post some results.

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Are you saying that R2 wants the WDS role installed to use as some sort of baseline for a restore?

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This sounds like a step backward. Now, it's still an unreleased product, so things could change: let's hope so.

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I thought I saw that in 2012 Essentials as well - in fact, I know in R2 that as soon as you go through the initial setup and you select the attach computers/backup computers part it directs you download the PE software.

 

I tried downloading the stand alone version so I didn't have to re-download each time I created a new 2012 R2 Essentials VM as I'm messing with it, but didn't get it to work. Right now I'm forced to re-download the files each time I recreate the VM. And it is not trivial for those of us on reduced bandwidth.

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Folks,  I've got this running on my own system.  It's no big deal.  Basically, Microsoft added Network boot recovery to the existing USB/CD recovery method.   You can still create a USB boot token but if you enable Client Restore Services, you can do a network boot.


It takes about 20 minutes for Windows to download all the WinPE tools once you install the ADK as per the KB article which the Essentials GUI refers you to.  All that Essentials is doing when you turn Client Restore Services on, is automatically installing and configuring some well-known Microsoft tools such as DISM and WinPE on your behalf.

 

 Once it's done, client recovery is as easy as:

 

  • Turn on PC
  • Press F12 when the BIOS/UEFI screen appears and select your network card as your boot device
    • (note: requires that Network Boot ROM is enabled in the BIOS.  Some systems do not support network boot, but it would be due to a lack of support in hardware.

 

After that, your PC boots the recovery environment from over the network, with no need for a USB token or CD.

Edited by Kaldek
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Folks,  I've got this running on my own system.  It's no big deal.  Basically, Microsoft added Network boot recovery to the existing USB/CD recovery method.   You can still create a USB boot token but if you enable Client Restore Services, you can do a network boot.

 

It takes about 20 minutes for Windows to download all the WinPE tools once you install the ADK as per the KB article which the Essentials GUI refers you to.  All that Essentials is doing when you turn Client Restore Services on, is automatically installing and configuring some well-known Microsoft tools such as DISM and WinPE on your behalf.

 

 Once it's done, client recovery is as easy as:

 

  • Turn on PC
  • Press F12 when the BIOS/UEFI screen appears and select your network card as your boot device
    • (note: requires that Network Boot ROM is enabled in the BIOS.  Some systems do not support network boot, but it would be due to a lack of support in hardware.

 

After that, your PC boots the recovery environment from over the network, with no need for a USB token or CD.

Nice catch. :)

I gave this a try. Sure enough I can boot a PC right into the PC Restore Wizard without needing a bootable USB thumb drive.

 

So it adds the Windows Deployment Service and adds the x86 and x64 boot images, automatically. Now I'll log into the server and add a Windows 7 and Windows 8 image.

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So it adds the Windows Deployment Service and adds the x86 and x64 boot images, automatically. Now I'll log into the server and add a Windows 7 and Windows 8 image.

 

You don't need to add anything unless you have a desire to perform automated builds of new systems.  I'm assuming that's what you'r referring to?

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You don't need to add anything unless you have a desire to perform automated builds of new systems.  I'm assuming that's what you'r referring to?

Yes.

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