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Dell Latitude E4300 and WDS Boot Issue

Set up Windows Depolyment Services (WDS) on the server. Load the boot.wim off of the Vista DVD. Load the install.wim off the Vista DVD. Boot your new Dell Latitude E4300 laptop using PXE, and start booting into Windows PE. Then, before you can get anywhere:

WdsClient: An error occurred while starting networking: a matching network card driver was not found in this image. Please have your Administrator add the network driver for this machine to the Windows PE image on the Windows Deployment Services server.

No problem. There are many articles on the Internet explaining how to load drivers into the boot.wim for WDS. It can take awhile to get the Windows System Image Manager up and running, copy all the files, load the drivers, save the file, etc. Finally, you load the updated boot.wim in WDS, boot up, and

WdsClient: An error occurred while starting networking: a matching network card driver was not found in this image. Please have your Administrator add the network driver for this machine to the Windows PE image on the Windows Deployment Services server.

@$#@!!

As ( bad ) luck would have it, guide after guide (even direct from Microsoft) have you load the driver using:

  • imagex /mountrw yourwimpathboot.wim 1 yourmountpathyourmountfolder

The problem is that there are two images in the boot.wim, and you need to select the second one to inject the drivers into:

  • imagex /mountrw yourwimpathboot.wim 2 yourmountpathyourmountfolder

After some searching, I have found references to this on the Internet, and even on Microsoft’s website. It all depends on which documentation you are following. If you get the right one, you are fine. If not, well, you go slowly insane as you try over and over to inject new drivers, and try it again.

Bottom line: if you are creating a custom Windows PE image, then you do want to mount image 1. If you are using WDS to deploy an OS, it is image 2 that needs the drivers.

One Response to “ Dell Latitude E4300 and WDS Boot Issue ”

  1. Shawn says:

    Jeffery,

    Thank you so much! I had been having this exact issue! I spent the end of Friday and Monday trying to figure this out and couldn’t figure out what was wrong. I had fixed the driver to take the image, but for the life of me could not figure out why my deploy image would not work using the exact same instructions.

    Sincerely,
    Shawn

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