Windows 10 Deployement Help



  • Need some help getting the finishing touches done to my Windows 10 Deployment. Got two things to work on.

    First Off Activation.

    I'm using Fog as the deployment method, and this is what I've done so far:-

    1. Using Virtual Box and using a Windows 10 Pro VL Media (I purchased a license just to do imaging) installed Windows 10 and installed updates and software I needed. Sysprep with a unattend.xml that sets it ok UK and creates a Local Admin with password for me.

    2. Uploaded that to FOG server - All OK

    3. Used a test machine wiped the HD and deployed the image from FOG. It images fine and on reboots setup runs and I get a log in screen with my local admin name and I enter password. Software is all there and working.

    However it not activating. Because i'm using VL do I need to use that Key on machines I deploy too? or do I still need to do a "in-place" upgrade to windows 10 activate and then wipe and deploy the image?? (I thought MS were allowing a straight clean install and still allow the FREE upgrade, which I have done a 2 laptops this week)



  • Why are you using FOG, and not WDT?



  • You need to do two things.

    1. Upgrade the current OS using the OEM (openly available media on MS's public website) to Windows 10. This is what upgrades your underlying license to Windows 10. This is a requirement. If you don't do this, any other way you put Windows 10 on this machine will likely not be legal.

    2. Setup a KMS server. You received two types of keys for Windows 10 with your VL. MAK and KMS.
      MAK keys are normally used for small, say 24 or less, workstation deployments. You'll manually type this key into the computer after you deploy your image.
      KMS keys are deployed either through AD or through a KMS server. The KMS server components can run from with Server 2012 (or newer) or a Windows 10 machine.

    With KMS, any computer built with VL media will check the network for a KMS server, assuming it finds one, it will activate with that KMS server.

    FYI - KMS for Windows Workstations requires at least 25 machines to be running at the same time on KMS. If you have fewer than 25, you must use MAK keys.

    2a)After you upgrade to Windows 10, now push your image onto the workstation. Reboot, log in - and pick a key option from above.


  • Service Provider

    @anonymous said:

    Why are you using FOG, and not WDT?

    WDT is a pain in the butt compared with other solutions.



  • @anonymous said:

    Why are you using FOG, and not WDT?

    I think FOG is really good when you have many machines at once that you want to deploy, or you want to use PXE Boot.

    Personally I don't think it's worth the effort. Instead I use Clonezilla. I only need a simple network share, boot from Clonezilla media, attach to the Samba or NFS share and go.

    WDT is a beast - unless you have a lot of time, and the patience of the gods, it's often not worth the hassle.



  • @anonymous said:

    Why are you using FOG, and not WDT?

    Because it didn't work lol



  • @Dashrender said:

    @anonymous said:

    Why are you using FOG, and not WDT?

    I think FOG is really good when you have many machines at once that you want to deploy, or you want to use PXE Boot.

    I plan on using the FOG PXE Boot for other tools and iso as well hence the reason for choosing it.



  • @Dashrender said:

    FYI - KMS for Windows Workstations requires at least 25 machines to be running at the same time on KMS. If you have fewer than 25, you must use MAK keys.

    So if i'm planning on deploying slow, unless I do 25 machines quick I won't be able to do this???
    Or if I plan on deploying Win10 to 25+ Machines over the next 30days will that be fine?



  • @Dashrender said:

    1. Upgrade the current OS using the OEM (openly available media on MS's public website) to Windows 10. This is what upgrades your underlying license to Windows 10. This is a requirement. If you don't do this, any other way you put Windows 10 on this machine will likely not be legal.

    Thought you didn't need to do this anymore and MS we allowing you to install Windows 10 as clean install and it will activate?? Well at least it did on the last two laptops I did?



  • @hobbit666 said:

    @Dashrender said:

    1. Upgrade the current OS using the OEM (openly available media on MS's public website) to Windows 10. This is what upgrades your underlying license to Windows 10. This is a requirement. If you don't do this, any other way you put Windows 10 on this machine will likely not be legal.

    Thought you didn't need to do this anymore and MS we allowing you to install Windows 10 as clean install and it will activate?? Well at least it did on the last two laptops I did?

    It will activate using the OEM software - I haven't actually tried activating using the VL - but you're own question implies that it won't activate with the VL media.

    If you're saying you didn't think you needed to upgrade anymore - that instead you could do a fresh install of Win10 with OEM media and it will just work - that only only true as long as the OEM Win7/8/8.1 key is in the BIOS. If you're upgrading an older machine, that won't work.

    So sure, on new machines you can skip upgrading and just install fresh using the OEM media to get the upgrade assigned to your machine, then wipe it out and push your image down for the VL side.



  • @hobbit666 said:

    @Dashrender said:

    FYI - KMS for Windows Workstations requires at least 25 machines to be running at the same time on KMS. If you have fewer than 25, you must use MAK keys.

    So if i'm planning on deploying slow, unless I do 25 machines quick I won't be able to do this???
    Or if I plan on deploying Win10 to 25+ Machines over the next 30days will that be fine?

    I can't recall if it's 30, 60 or 90 days grace you get to deploy 25 machines. I'm sure google would answer that one.



  • @Dashrender said:

    @hobbit666 said:

    @Dashrender said:

    1. Upgrade the current OS using the OEM (openly available media on MS's public website) to Windows 10. This is what upgrades your underlying license to Windows 10. This is a requirement. If you don't do this, any other way you put Windows 10 on this machine will likely not be legal.

    Thought you didn't need to do this anymore and MS we allowing you to install Windows 10 as clean install and it will activate?? Well at least it did on the last two laptops I did?

    It will activate using the OEM software - I haven't actually tried activating using the VL - but you're own question implies that it won't activate with the VL media.

    If you're saying you didn't think you needed to upgrade anymore - that instead you could do a fresh install of Win10 with OEM media and it will just work - that only only true as long as the OEM Win7/8/8.1 key is in the BIOS. If you're upgrading an older machine, that won't work.

    So sure, on new machines you can skip upgrading and just install fresh using the OEM media to get the upgrade assigned to your machine, then wipe it out and push your image down for the VL side.

    OK thanks I see now. Guess that's why it worked on the last 2 laptops as they would be BIOS keys and this test PC is an older Win7 with OEM COA. Yeah will have another play with my test machine(s) then post Question 2 (about joining domain via script and enable bitlocker lol)



  • @Dashrender said:

    @hobbit666 said:

    @Dashrender said:

    FYI - KMS for Windows Workstations requires at least 25 machines to be running at the same time on KMS. If you have fewer than 25, you must use MAK keys.

    So if i'm planning on deploying slow, unless I do 25 machines quick I won't be able to do this???
    Or if I plan on deploying Win10 to 25+ Machines over the next 30days will that be fine?

    I can't recall if it's 30, 60 or 90 days grace you get to deploy 25 machines. I'm sure google would answer that one.

    I'm sure I've seen something along those lines too, but just logged into my VL account and it's only given me a MAK key, no KMS key available



  • @hobbit666 said:

    @Dashrender said:

    @hobbit666 said:

    @Dashrender said:

    1. Upgrade the current OS using the OEM (openly available media on MS's public website) to Windows 10. This is what upgrades your underlying license to Windows 10. This is a requirement. If you don't do this, any other way you put Windows 10 on this machine will likely not be legal.

    Thought you didn't need to do this anymore and MS we allowing you to install Windows 10 as clean install and it will activate?? Well at least it did on the last two laptops I did?

    It will activate using the OEM software - I haven't actually tried activating using the VL - but you're own question implies that it won't activate with the VL media.

    If you're saying you didn't think you needed to upgrade anymore - that instead you could do a fresh install of Win10 with OEM media and it will just work - that only only true as long as the OEM Win7/8/8.1 key is in the BIOS. If you're upgrading an older machine, that won't work.

    So sure, on new machines you can skip upgrading and just install fresh using the OEM media to get the upgrade assigned to your machine, then wipe it out and push your image down for the VL side.

    OK thanks I see now. Guess that's why it worked on the last 2 laptops as they would be BIOS keys and this test PC is an older Win7 with OEM COA. Yeah will have another play with my test machine(s) then post Question 2 (about joining domain via script and enable bitlocker lol)

    OHH.. interesting.. so the VL did auto activate with MS servers - interesting.



  • @hobbit666 said:

    @Dashrender said:

    @hobbit666 said:

    @Dashrender said:

    FYI - KMS for Windows Workstations requires at least 25 machines to be running at the same time on KMS. If you have fewer than 25, you must use MAK keys.

    So if i'm planning on deploying slow, unless I do 25 machines quick I won't be able to do this???
    Or if I plan on deploying Win10 to 25+ Machines over the next 30days will that be fine?

    I can't recall if it's 30, 60 or 90 days grace you get to deploy 25 machines. I'm sure google would answer that one.

    I'm sure I've seen something along those lines too, but just logged into my VL account and it's only given me a MAK key, no KMS key available

    Yeah they buried it.. and in many cases you have to actually call and request it.

    If you have more than 25 machines, I highly recommend using KMS and making the call - it took around 20 mins on the phone to get it added to my account, definitely worth the call.



  • @Dashrender said:

    @hobbit666 said:

    @Dashrender said:

    @hobbit666 said:

    @Dashrender said:

    1. Upgrade the current OS using the OEM (openly available media on MS's public website) to Windows 10. This is what upgrades your underlying license to Windows 10. This is a requirement. If you don't do this, any other way you put Windows 10 on this machine will likely not be legal.

    Thought you didn't need to do this anymore and MS we allowing you to install Windows 10 as clean install and it will activate?? Well at least it did on the last two laptops I did?

    It will activate using the OEM software - I haven't actually tried activating using the VL - but you're own question implies that it won't activate with the VL media.

    If you're saying you didn't think you needed to upgrade anymore - that instead you could do a fresh install of Win10 with OEM media and it will just work - that only only true as long as the OEM Win7/8/8.1 key is in the BIOS. If you're upgrading an older machine, that won't work.

    So sure, on new machines you can skip upgrading and just install fresh using the OEM media to get the upgrade assigned to your machine, then wipe it out and push your image down for the VL side.

    OK thanks I see now. Guess that's why it worked on the last 2 laptops as they would be BIOS keys and this test PC is an older Win7 with OEM COA. Yeah will have another play with my test machine(s) then post Question 2 (about joining domain via script and enable bitlocker lol)

    OHH.. interesting.. so the VL did auto activate with MS servers - interesting.

    No that would of been using OEM install media not the VL 😃 only tested the deploy image on the test PC 😃



  • @hobbit666 said:

    @Dashrender said:

    @hobbit666 said:

    @Dashrender said:

    @hobbit666 said:

    @Dashrender said:

    1. Upgrade the current OS using the OEM (openly available media on MS's public website) to Windows 10. This is what upgrades your underlying license to Windows 10. This is a requirement. If you don't do this, any other way you put Windows 10 on this machine will likely not be legal.

    Thought you didn't need to do this anymore and MS we allowing you to install Windows 10 as clean install and it will activate?? Well at least it did on the last two laptops I did?

    It will activate using the OEM software - I haven't actually tried activating using the VL - but you're own question implies that it won't activate with the VL media.

    If you're saying you didn't think you needed to upgrade anymore - that instead you could do a fresh install of Win10 with OEM media and it will just work - that only only true as long as the OEM Win7/8/8.1 key is in the BIOS. If you're upgrading an older machine, that won't work.

    So sure, on new machines you can skip upgrading and just install fresh using the OEM media to get the upgrade assigned to your machine, then wipe it out and push your image down for the VL side.

    OK thanks I see now. Guess that's why it worked on the last 2 laptops as they would be BIOS keys and this test PC is an older Win7 with OEM COA. Yeah will have another play with my test machine(s) then post Question 2 (about joining domain via script and enable bitlocker lol)

    OHH.. interesting.. so the VL did auto activate with MS servers - interesting.

    No that would of been using OEM install media not the VL 😃 only tested the deploy image on the test PC 😃

    Aww OK - that would make the most sense.


  • Service Provider

    How does KMS help when all the machines are OEM and you only buy the single VL license?



  • MS licensing allows you to us VL media on OEM licenses as long as the version is exactly the same.

    i.e. OEM Windows 10 Pro, VL Windows 10 Pro - same version.

    So you can create images using VL media to be deployed to OEM only licensed machines.

    But - we through the wrench in that the machines are currently licenses with Windows 8.1 Pro. So the first thing you have to do is go through the legal process of upgrading them to Windows 10 Pro. To do this, you have to either upgrade Windows 8.1 to Windows 10 using OEM media OR as you're now allowed to do, install from scratch Windows 10 using OEM media (because Win10 will pull the 8.1 key for you from BIOS and perform the activation/upgrade process for you).

    Once you have performed an upgrade/activation process on your OEM license, you have a legal OEM copy of Windows 10 Pro attached to that machine. Now you can deploy your VL media based license to the machine.


  • Service Provider

    @Dashrender said:

    MS licensing allows you to us VL media on OEM licenses as long as the version is exactly the same.

    i.e. OEM Windows 10 Pro, VL Windows 10 Pro - same version.

    So you can create images using VL media to be deployed to OEM only licensed machines.

    But - we through the wrench in that the machines are currently licenses with Windows 8.1 Pro. So the first thing you have to do is go through the legal process of upgrading them to Windows 10 Pro. To do this, you have to either upgrade Windows 8.1 to Windows 10 using OEM media OR as you're now allowed to do, install from scratch Windows 10 using OEM media (because Win10 will pull the 8.1 key for you from BIOS and perform the activation/upgrade process for you).

    Once you have performed an upgrade/activation process on your OEM license, you have a legal OEM copy of Windows 10 Pro attached to that machine. Now you can deploy your VL media based license to the machine.

    Right, so why bother installing twice? Clean install and licensed via OEM. Yes, Imaging is nice, but unless you can activate it is not good.

    But it seems @hobbit666 did activate OEM (BIOS) with the VL media? If so, then just grabbing the GenuineTicket.xml prior to the imaging will get you activated for any of them that are not BIOS enabled.



  • @JaredBusch said:

    Right, so why bother installing twice? Clean install and licensed via OEM. Yes, Imaging is nice, but unless you can activate it is not good.

    You can activate the image, with the two step process I mentioned above (upgrade/fresh install from OEM - activate w/MS, wipe and push image - activate via MAK or KMS)

    But it seems @hobbit666 did activate OEM (BIOS) with the VL media? If so, then just grabbing the GenuineTicket.xml prior to the imaging will get you activated for any of them that are not BIOS enabled.

    This was a misunderstanding. @hobbit666 did not activate with VL media - his original test machines were with OEM media.

    @hobbit666 said:

    No that would of been using OEM install media not the VL 😃 only tested the deploy image on the test PC 😃


  • Service Provider

    @Dashrender said:

    You can activate the image, with the two step process I mentioned above (upgrade/fresh install from OEM - activate w/MS, wipe and push image - activate via MAK or KMS)

    Well it should automatically activate because of the hardware being authorized at this point. No need to activate via MAK or KMS (technically the Win10 auto activation is KMS to MS servers).



  • I'm not sure if it's technically KMS or not, but it's not overly relevant either.

    But MS could easily not allow VL media based images to activate with anything other than a MAK or KMS server.

    I guess you'll have to load one up and try it.

    But the whole reason for using VL media is because legally you can't image OEM software, you must use VL media for images.


  • Service Provider

    @Dashrender said:

    I'm not sure if it's technically KMS or not, but it's not overly relevant either.

    But MS could easily not allow VL media based images to activate with anything other than a MAK or KMS server.

    I guess you'll have to load one up and try it.

    But the whole reason for using VL media is because legally you can't image OEM software, you must use VL media for images.

    Right. I just do not want to have to upgrade then image. it is annoying. I will be testing out VL stuff for certain. I have a couple machines to be upgrade. I'll generate the GenuineTicket.xml and first and then simply install 10 clean from VL media and see if it activates without or with the GenuineTicket.xml. If not, I'll clean install with the normal Windows 10 image.



  • @JaredBusch said:

    Right. I just do not want to have to upgrade then image. it is annoying. I will be testing out VL stuff for certain. I have a couple machines to be upgrade. I'll generate the GenuineTicket.xml and first and then simply install 10 clean from VL media and see if it activates without or with the GenuineTicket.xml. If not, I'll clean install with the normal Windows 10 image.

    Let me know how you get on 😃



  • You asked so I did it.

    I pulled the GenuineTicket.xml file from Windows 8.1, then installed Win10 using VL media. This laptop does have the Windows key in the BIOS, but it didn't auto activate. So I put the GenuineTicket.xml file in place, rebooted - nope still not activated.

    This means you can not skip the step of either doing a normal upgrade, or fresh install using OEM media to upgrade the license.


  • Service Provider

    @Dashrender said:

    You asked so I did it.

    I pulled the GenuineTicket.xml file from Windows 8.1, then installed Win10 using VL media. This laptop does have the Windows key in the BIOS, but it didn't auto activate. So I put the GenuineTicket.xml file in place, rebooted - nope still not activated.

    This means you can not skip the step of either doing a normal upgrade, or fresh install using OEM media to upgrade the license.

    Sad, because the imaging process is much faster than the install process. But it is certainly still a solid method. Was jsut hoping to slim the process down a bit more.



  • @JaredBusch said:

    Sad, because the imaging process is much faster than the install process. But it is certainly still a solid method. Was jsut hoping to slim the process down a bit more.

    Same here was hoping to skip the upgrade process and just deploy the image.



  • OK so got a Windows 7 OEM COA machine. In-Place upgraded to Windows 10 let it activate.

    Deployed my "Gold" image of windows 10 that was created with the VL media. But it doesn't activate. So i'm guessing a call to MS today to get them to add the KMS key and get one setup 😃



  • Need to try the process on a Windows 8 BIOS key machine next 😃 see what happens.


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