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Using Mac OS X Lion Server by Charles Edge

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Deploying Computers with NetRestore

NetInstall creates a network installer that runs over NetBoot. NetRestore is a bit different in that instead of running an operating system installer, you are actually pushing out an image. This prepared image usually has software and customizations within the image itself, often making the deployment simpler and/or faster. When using NetRestore, you are going to fully erase the hard drive that you are restoring your image onto and once the image is restored possibly perform some minor automations. In this example, we will change the name of the computer and bind it to the Open Directory service running on our OS X Server as part of our imaging automation.

To get started, mount the drive that you want to build an image from via Target Disk Mode on a system running the Server Tools (can be the server if you like). Open System Image Utility and select the disk to use as the image from the Sources menu to bring up the Create a Network Disk Image screen. Click on NetRestore Image and then click on the Customize button.

Clicking on Continue instead of Customize will create an image with no customizations. However, since you should not have systems with duplicate names, we are going to change the name of the computer as a postflight imaging task.

Drag the Apply System Configuration Settings object from the Automator Library in between the Define Image Source and Create Image options. In the Apply System Configuration Settings workflow item, check the box ...

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