Setting up my Deployment Lab

UPDATE: This post is outdated. Check out the new Lab here.

To get my learning project off to a good start I made a couple of investments to set up a lab at home – a technician computer, a reference computer and a target computer along with the FOG server.

With my limited budget in mind I took the decision to dual boot my HP DC5800 to act both as my ‘Technician Computer’ and ‘Reference Computer’. With the WAIK installed on the technician computer, it’ll be used to build the unattend.xml answer file using the Windows SIM tool as well as using Fog’s web management interface and continuing with my on-going research into the subject, etc.

I was lucky to find a second HP DC5800 on eBay identical to the one I’ve had for over a year to act as my target computer and also bought a 4-port KVM switch allowing me to control 4 computers with a single keyboard, mouse and monitor to minimise the space my deployment lab takes up (in my bedroom :).

Note that I made sure the technician computer and reference computer are both on two separate disks – if you have a single disk with multiple partitions you can’t choose to upload just one of these using Fog, you can only upload the entire disk. Also, when Fog deploys an image to a computer with two disks it does so on the first available disk, which is why I’ve also made sure the reference computer installation is on the first disk.

Now I’m ready to get started!

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