03 August 2016

Operating System Deployment (OSD) with USMT Task Sequence Guide | SCCM 2012 R2

I have recently been setting up User State Migration as part of Operating System Deployment through SCCM 2012 R2.  What this will allow, is the re-installation of an Operating System whilst saving the user's locally saved data, such as data on Desktop, My Docs, background picture etc.  You can even go as far as to allow users to initial their own OS Refresh if they were having problems on their workstation.  It's a very good way in reducing IT Support overheads if you've got a stable SOE image.

The reason for this blog post however, is that USMT and OSD is a pain to get working well, and there's not a lot of information out there that specifically shows you how the Tasks Sequences should be configured.  After two days of playing around with SCCM trying to get this all working, 1,000,000 log files and a lot of Googling, I managed to get everything resolved and have got a stable Task Sequence running to refresh the Operating System.

Below are the requirements you will need to not only Build and Capture your image, but then also create the Task Sequence to refresh your OS with USMT.

Build and Capture
When setting up OSD and using USMT, it is critical that you correctly Build and Capture an image.  What I mean by this is that if you use the B&C Task Sequence and don't correctly set it up (it doesn't just work natively), you will have issues down the line with the second Task Sequence.

Once you have gone through the process of creating the Build and Capture task sequence, go to edit it and make the following changes:

Partition Disk 0 - BIOS

Partition Disk 0 - UEFI

Preserve Drive Letter - False

Apply Operating System
Select the Windows 7 Professional Image (or whatever one you're wanting to install), then select Logical drive letter stored in a variable, and type in System

Once you've done this, you will be able to run the Build and Capture task sequence.  Make sure it's saved to a location that computers will have access to.  This will be used when you're creating your OSD with USMT task sequence.

Operating System Deployment with USMT Task Sequence
This is the main Task Sequence for copying the user's local data, refreshing the Operating System, then copying the local data back.  This will usually be accessed from the Software Center within the Windows Operating System of the user's computer.

There's not too many settings you will need to change here, but if you don't get this right, it will cause hours of grief and Googling to try and work out why it's failing.

Partition Disk 0 - BIOS

Partition Disk 0 - UEFI

Preserve Drive Letter - False

Apply Operating System
Select the "2-2" image that you would have created within the Build and Capture sequence.  Then select Logical drive letter stored in a variable and type in System

Setup Windows and ConfigMgr
Make sure you add the highlighted section below.  This is not automatically added in.  This will be the FQDN of your SCCM server.

That's it!  If you've made sure that security permissions are set correctly (NTFS) on the SCCM server where USMT data will be stored and where data will be referenced, you will find that OSD will work smoothly and there shouldn't be any errors with your setup.

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