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Using Casper and Winclone Pro to image a lab of dual-boot Macs

Overview and requirements

Use JAMF Casper Imaging to restore an OS X image and a Winclone image to a remote Mac.

This guide assumes:

  • Winclone Pro version 4 or later
  • JAMF version 8.6 software infrastructure is already in place
  • A Mac with OS X configured the way you want for a master image, or you have the software you want installed on your lab Macs in package format
  • OS X volume does not contain a Winclone image
  • A Windows operating system for imaging
  • Windows volume image created using Winclone or Winclone Pro
  • Capability to boot from a disk other than the target restore disk, which can be NetBoot service, an extra internal disk, or a bootable USB, FireWire or ThunderBolt disk

Note: although it is possible to use Casper Imaging to install a fresh copy of OS X onto a volume from an InstallESD disk image, there are many variables to consider. The recommendation is to use a configured OS X master image rather than a fresh copy of OS X from an ImstallESD disk image.

Presented here is a basic workflow that can be tailored to individual needs. We recommend mastering the basics first, then customize the workflow as needed.

Note: A Recovery HD volume is not required, particularly lab environments using a NetBoot server or access to images containing tools similar those included in the Recovery HD.

Basic Outline

The following summarizes a method for restoring the combined OS X, Winclone and Recovery HD volumes using JAMF:

Prepare images:

  1. Configure the OS X master image on a disk containing only the OS X and Recovery HD volumes
  2. Create the OS X image including the Recovery HD
  3. Configure the Winclone image
  4. Create the Winclone image
  5. Use Winclone Pro (version 4 or later) to make the Winclone image self-extracting

Prepare a Casper Admin Configuration:

  1. Drag the OS X image to Casper Admin
  2. Drag the Winclone image to Casper Admin
  3. Create a new configuration using Casper Admin
  4. Add a partition for the Winclone image
  5. Drag the OS X image to the Casper Admin configuration

Image target Macs:

  1. Boot each target Mac to a disk other than that system's boot volume
  2. Open Casper Imaging
  3. Choose the configuration to restore the OS X, Recovery HD and Winclone volumes

Note: Versions of Winclone earlier than 4, and JAMF software earlier than 8.6, would not automatically handle restoring the Winclone volume in the correct location. Be sure you are using Winclone Pro version 4 or later and JAMF software version 8.6 or later.

Prepare your images

Prepare the OS X and Winclone images with the following steps.

Configure OS X and Recovery HD master image

The two primary methods for creating a master image are:

  • Build a disk image based on the core OS X installer with additional packages and settings, referred to as a "modular image"
  • Configure OS X on Mac hardware, complete with required software and settings, referred to as a "monolithic image"

Each method has advantages and disadvantages.

If you have a Mac already configured with the required software, it may be easier to start with a monolithic image and leave the modular imaging workflow for another time.

Except for the next section, this document focuses on creating a monolithic image.

Option 1: Use JAMF tools to create a modular image

See the JAMF Software support document Deploying OS X v10.7 (Lion) or v10.8 (Mountain Lion) with the Casper or Imaging Suite for more information on using the InstallESD.dmg that is contained in the Install Mac OS X Lion or the Install OS X Mountain Lion applications to create a generic installation of OS X.

Using the InstallESD method automatically creates a Recovery HD volume.

The main caveats are:
Make sure to download the latest version of the "Install Mac OS X Lion" or "Install OS X Mountain Lion" applications for the latest available version of the OS.
To create an image for OS X 10.7, use OS X 10.7 to compile the Casper Admin configuration that includes the 10.7 InstallESD.
To create an image for OS X 10.8, use OS X 10.8 to compile the Casper Admin configuration that includes the 10.8 InstallESD.
Use Casper Admin to compile the configuration, which will ensure that the process yields stable, bootable volumes.

We'll be creating a monolithic image, but once images are uploaded to Caspar Admin server, the process for imaging monolithic and modular images is the same. If you are using a modular image, skip to the section "Configure your Winclone image".

Option 2: Configure a monolithic image

Start by configuring the OS X master image on a Mac system containing only the OS X volume and the hidden Recovery HD volume.

Install the latest software updates and any specific configurations required before creating an image of the OS X volume.

While JAMF's Composer 8.6 does allow you to make an image of an OS X volume, it does not allow you to include the Recovery HD in that disk image. However, retaining the Recovery HD may be less essential for lab environments with the capability to create their own bootable diagnostics volumes.

OS X's native Disk Utility can be used to create OS X images that include the Recovery HD. However, it is not possible to create a "golden master" since Disk Utilities does not remove Local KDC files or other essential mastering duties. JAMF's Composer performs the tasks that provide a golden master as an end result.

Note: It is possible to store your Winclone image as part of the OS X volume and later restore the Winclone image to the Boot Camp partition. However, there are three disadvantages to this method:

  1. The OS X image will be unnecessarily large for use with non-dual-boot Macs.
  2. Subsequent changes to the OS X master require longer copy time to recreate the image.
  3. Subsequent changes to the Windows master are time consuming as well, creating a new Winclone image, copying to the OS X master, then re-creating the OS X master image.

Note: Be sure to take appropriate steps to remove (or not include in your image) caches and Local KDC files. Some sources of information on creating disk images of OS X include:

  • The book Mac OS X Deployment v10.6: A Guide to Deploying and Maintaining Mac OS X v10.6 Snow Leopard Systems and Software
  • The online help for using System Image Utility to create a NetRestore disk image (open the .nbi folder, mount NetInstall.dmg, and use /Packages/System.dmg)
  • Greg Neagle's Image cleanup script

Enable Disk Utility's Debug menu (optional)

Boot from a disk other than the golden master disk, and enable the Disk Utility Debug menu to confirm that disk contains a Recovery HD volume, which is normally hidden. As mentioned previously, a Recovery HD is not required.

  1. Enable the Disk Utility debug menu by opening Terminal and entering the following command (without the quote characters): "defaults write com.apple.diskutility DUDebugMenuEnabled 1", then press return.
  2. Open Disk Utility.
  3. From the Debug menu, choose "Show every partition", and confirm that the golden master disk has a Recovery HD volume (which is greyed out).

Note: Enabling debug mode in Disk Utility pertains to the current user account on the computer and will remain in effect until disabled.

Disk Utility - Recovery HD

Create OS X master image including Recovery HD

Boot from a disk other than the golden master disk. An out-of-the-box Mac with OS X 10.7 or 10.8 preinstalled includes the Recovery HD and does not need to be manually created.

Create OS X volume and Recovery HD image.

  1. In the Disk Utility sidebar, select the golden master disk.
  2. Be sure to select the entire disk, not a volume; look for "Disk Description" in the bottom part of the Disk Utility window.
  3. In the Disk Utility toolbar, click New Image.
  4. Enter an appropriate name in the Save As field.
  5. Set the location to save the image. Leave the other settings at their defaults.
  6. Click Save.
  7. Provide authentication information when prompted.
Create OS X master image including Recovery HD

Configure Winclone image

A recommended practice is to use a different system to create the Windows master from that used to create the OS X master image.

On your Windows volume, install the latest software updates and configure settings as needed before creating the image.

Use Winclone Pro (version 4 or later) to create a self-extracting image

Use the following steps to make your Winclone image self extracting.

Open Winclone Pro and select your Winclone image

  1. Copy the Winclone image to the Mac used for JAMF configurations.
  2. Open Winclone Pro (version 4 or later)
  3. Drag the Winclone image to the Winclone sidebar.
  4. Select the Winclone image in the Winclone window sidebar.

If the Winclone image isn't already in the sidebar, it can be dragged there from the Finder.

Use Winclone Pro to make self-extracting

From the Tools menu, choose "Make Self Extracting". This creates a perl script used later to extract the image. A self-extracting image provides the ability to image systems without the need to install Winclone app on the target Mac.

Select

Agree to Make Self Extracting

At the "Make Self Extracting" window, click Copy.

Resources copied successfully

After a few moments, the Completed window appears. Click OK.

Prepare a Casper Admin Configuration

As a mini-overview, use these steps to prepare a new configuration:

  1. Drag the OS X image to Casper Admin and edit its priority.
  2. Drag the Winclone image to Casper Admin.
  3. In Casper Admin, create and configure a New Config.
  4. Add and configure a partition for the Winclone image.
  5. Drag the OS X image to your configuration.

Drag the OS X image to Casper Admin

Open Casper Admin and connect to JSS.

Drag the disk image (the file that ends in .dmg and contains your OS X and Recovery HD volumes) to Casper Admin.

Wait while the OS X image is uploaded

Wait while the OS X image is uploaded to the JSS repository.

Confirm you can see the OS X disk image in the Packages section

After the OS X disk image has successfully uploaded, click Packages.
Confirm that the .dmg file is visible.

Update the Priority of the .dmg file

Although not strictly required for this simple workflow, it's a good idea to set Priority of the OS disk image. The Casper Suite 8.6 Administrator's Guide defines a "priority" that "determines the order in which packages are installed. For example, an OS package should have a priority of 1 to ensure that it is installed first. An updater or a package that needs to overwrite files that may exist in another package should have a priority of 20."

  1. Select the .dmg file.
  2. Click Info in the Casper Admin toolbar.
  3. Click the Options tab.
  4. Click the Priority pop-up menu and choose 1.
  5. Click OK.
Update priority of the OS disk image.

Drag the Winclone image to Casper Admin

Drag the Winclone image to the Casper Admin window.

Wait while the Winclone image is copied to the repository

A status bar shows the progress of the upload.

Confirm the Winclone image is present in the Packages section

After the Winclone image has successfully uploaded, click Packages.

Confirm that both the OS X and Winclone images are present . The OS X image displays as type "DMG Package" and the Winclone image displays as type "Windows Image".

Create a New Config

In the Casper Admin toolbar, click New Config.

Edit General properties

Enter information in the Configuration Name and Description fields.

Enter information in the Configuration Name and Description fields.

Edit Management properties

See JAMF documentation for more information on appropriate Management properties.

Edit Management properties

Add additional partition for the Winclone volume

  1. Click the Additional Partitions tab.
  2. Click Add.
Add an additional partition for the Winclone volume

Configure Winclone volume properties

  1. Enter "WINDOWS" in the Partition Name.
  2. Enter a value for the Size.
  3. Enter a value for the Maximum Percentage of Drive.
  4. Set the Format to NTFS.
  5. Select the Winclone image from the drop-down menu.
  6. Select or deselect the checkbox to Re-image. Note: the Re-image checkbox allows the Windows partition to be re-imaged and can be used for imaging additional Macs.
  7. Click OK.

 

Configure the properties of the Winclone volume

Close the Configuration window.

Click OK to close the Edit Configuration window.

Close the Configuration window.

Add OS X DMG Package to configuration

Now that the Winclone image has been added to the configuration, add the OS X image.

  1. In the Casper Admin toolbar, select All Items.
  2. Drag the OS X DMG Package to the new configuration in the Casper Admin sidebar.

Confirm the configuration contains the OS X DMG Package

Select the new configuration in the Casper Admin sidebar and confirm that it contains the DMG Package.

Confirm presence of OS X DMG package

Optional: Add items to the new configuration

Optionally, additional items may be added to the configuration. For example, additional software packages can be added for inclusion with a monolithic OS X master image.

For this tutorial, no additional items are added.

Optional: Compile the new configuration

The Casper Suite 8.6 Administrator's Guide states, "Compiled configurations speed up the imaging process by building a single DMG that includes each component in a configuration."

Since a compiled configuration does not include the extra Winclone partition, this step is not necessary. However, when additional OS X software packages have been added as extra items to a monolithic image, the configuration should be compiled. In this case, locate the sidebar Configurations section, select the new configuration and click Compile.

If Compiling: Choose Uncompressed of Compressed

Click the choice appropriate for the environment.
 

Choose uncompressed or compressed disk image

If Compiling: Wait for the compilation

System authentication may be required during this process.

Image the Macs

Now that the images have been created, configured and (optionally) compiled, they are ready for deployment.

Note: The process in this example assumes hardware that are fresh, out-of-the-box Macs with a single partition (or a single OS X partition with a Recovery HD).

Boot the Macs from a device other than the disk onto which the image will be installed. The disk that will receive the new image is referred to as the Target Disk.

The Casper Suite Resource Kit contains utilities for further automating the imaging process, in particular Casper NetInstall Creator and Casper Multicast. See http://jamfsoftware.com/support/resource-kit.

Here is an example screenshot of creating a NetInstall image with Casper Imaging.

Open Casper Imaging and enter JSS Address if necessary

Once the target system is booted to an alternate boot source, open Casper Imaging.

Enter the JSS Address if prompted. Click Save.

enter JSS address

Authenticate to the JSS server if necessary

If prompted, enter credentials and click OK.

authenticate to the JSS server

Alternate Method: Target Mode Imaging

In cases without a NetBoot infrastructure in place, or for re-imaging a small number of Macs, Target Mode imaging may be used instead. For more information on ThunderBolt imaging, see the Apple white paper
Imaging the MacBook Air: Leveraging Thunderbolt

Click the Target Drive pop-up menu and choose Target Mode Imaging.

The remainder of this tutorial uses examples of booting from a NetBoot set. The selections in Casper Imaging are similar for both situations.

using Target Mode imaging in Caspar Imaging

Choose the target drive

Click the pop-up menu for Target Drive and choose the target drive.

Note: If the volume name must be changed after opening Casper Imaging, make sure to quit and re-open Casper Imaging for the new volume name to appear.

Select the target drive for imaging

Select Erase checkbox

Select the checkbox to Erase the target drive. If left unchecked, existing data on the target drive will remain and the copy process will take considerably longer.

Erase

Specify computer name

Enter a name in the Computer Name field or click the pop-up menu to select an option.

Select method of Computer Name assignment

Choose a configuration

Click the Install Configuration pop-up menu to choose the configuration.

Choose a configuration

Optional: Select checkbox to reboot

Once imaging is complete, the Mac will automatically reboot into the specified volume. Depending on how the master images were configured, it may be necessary to boot into each volume's OS to allow various tasks to run.

Check box for reboot option

Optional: Store imaging information in the JSS

Selecting the "Store all imaging information for this computer in the JSS" checkbox sets Casper Imaging to automatically load the same settings at the next use. To remove the imaging information, refer to the section "Using the Autorun Feature" in the Casper Suite 8.6 Administrator's Guide.

Click Install

Warning: After clicking on Install, contents of the Target Drive will be erased!

OS X image copy process

Note: The list of tasks in the Casper Imaging only lists one dmg, but two instances of "Performing Block Copy..." will appear during the imaging process: one for the main OS X volume, the other for the Recovery HD volume.

Block copying of image

Winclone image is installed

After the OS X volumes are copied, Casper Imaging quickly steps through a few housekeeping tasks, then starts installing the Winclone image.

After OS X image completes, Winclone image copying begins

Summary

 
This document walks you through a sample workflow using Winclone Pro, Casper Admin, and Casper Imaging to configure, create, and restore OS X, Recovery HD, and Winclone images to Macs,.

You can modify the workflow, and the settings for each task in the workflow, to meet your own needs.