Windows 10 Deployments, Moving Forward


Ever since Windows Vista, we have had the .wim image format and that continues with Windows 10. There are many ways to deploy the Windows 10 operating system. Just pop the DVD in and do a manual upgrade. Also the free upgrade that came down for retail 7 and 8 users, or convert the .wim image to a .vhd image by applying the .wim image into a .vhd file created in disk manager using DISM, then attaching the .vhd to boot natively. That one I like. Also, for now, Windows 10 is creating bootable media like a bootable USB drive with Windows 10 Media Creation Tool.  But users in the Enterprise will have a different licensing for Business deployments. They may use (WDS) Windows Deployment Services built into Windows Servers or download the (MDT) Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2013 Update 1 and use it with or without System Center Configuration Manager, which has always used the deployment kits listed below because it is and has always been a prerequisite for the install. So although the deployment kits have changed in name from version to version they still have the same collection of tools and technologies just in newer versions.

Along the way, the deployment kits have given us utilities such as USMT, ImageX, DISM, WISM and VAMT but now Windows 10 has added even more to the ADK like the (ICD) Windows Imaging and Configuration Designer among others. It will be fun to use these tools in class as I have given demos of most if not all these tools in different versions over the years and now Windows 10 is upping the game with this provisioning tool.


After Installing the Windows 10 ADK you will have access to the ICD and be able to create provisioning packages (.ppkg) to apply to a running image or to create images for new deployments. You will be able to use these packages on PCs Tablets and Mobile devices. You will be able to add applications and drivers sets to name a few to the package and apply to running images. So as of this writing the first look Windows 10 virtual academy course had been released in June 2015, but shows us Windows 10 still allows for old deployment methods which are still available but moving forward with the image and provisioning process in Windows 10 ADK will change the way we look at supporting running Operating System Images. By the end of October 2015 there will be a couple of Windows 10 courses available, but till then follow this link to get started on the ICD Windows Imaging and Configuration Designer here.


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