Intro

Below is a guide to my “best practice” method of creating an image of Mac OS X 10.5+ and Windows XP+ on a dual boot Mac for later deployment to multiple machines. More info on the deployment of Windows partitions and images via Apple Remote Desktop can be found at the WinClone site.

Building the Source Machine

MAC OS X

The first part of the process is rebuilding the Mac OS X system to your desired specifications. A simple outline of the procedure previously used is as follows:

  1. Install Mac OS X 10.5.
  2. Install Apple iLife ’09 suite.
  3. Run Software Update to ensure system is as up to date as possible.
  4. Install desired third party applications.
    1. Microsoft Office 2008
      1. Run Autoupdate repeatedly until software suite is up to date.
  5. Run Boot Camp Assistant.
    1. Create new Windows partition of 32gb (or whatever size you choose).
    2. Insert the Windows installation media. Start Windows installation.

WINDOWS

The version of Windows installed is entirely determined by preference. For the previous installation, we have used Windows XP. Windows 7 is also a viable alternative. Windows Vista is not recommended as there seemed to be many inconsistent issues with the sysprep process and keeping the installation stable. The following outlines a basic installation procedure of Windows XP:

  1. Begin the Windows installation where Boot Camp Assistant left off.
  2. Format the Boot Camp partition:
    1. Windows XP
      1. Arrow down to the BOOTCAMP partition and press Enter.
      2. Choose the option to format the partition as NTFS. (NOTE: This partition will only be read-only under Mac OS X. If you need read/write capability from within OS X, format as FAT32.)
    2. Windows Vista/7
      1. Click Next.
      2. Click the BOOTCAMP partition in the partition table.
      3. Click Format to format the partition as an NTFS. (NOTE: This partition will only be read-only under Mac OS X. Installation of Windows Vista/7 to a FAT32 partition is not supported without additional tweaking. It is not recommended.)
  3. Proceed with the remainder of the Windows installation process.
  4. When the Windows installation is complete, insert the Mac OS X installation media and follow the on-screen instructions to install the necessary Boot Camp drivers and software.
  5. Install all third-party applications.
  6. Run Microsoft Update repeatedly until no new updates are found.
  7. Perform sysprep as usual using your desired settings or use the following procedure for Windows Vista/7:
    1. Run sysprep.exe, found in C:\windows\system32\sysprep\
    2. Choose Shutdown from the Shutdown Options drop-down list.
    3. Click OK.

Cloning the Source Machine

NOTE
The Mac OS X machine used for pulling the image from the source machine MUST be running Mac OS X 10.5 or higher. The software tools used in this procedure require the expanded command-level functionality that it provides.

After completing the creation of each individual OS, the source machine is ready for cloning. This must be done in a two-part process: cloning the Mac OS X partition and cloning the Windows XP/Vista/7 partition. This is not as simple as using Symantec Ghost or Disk Utility to clone each partition, because neither utility supports both partition formats. Instead, we will use the following software and hardware tools to accomplish this:

  • CarbonCopyCloner: This freeware tool offers a wide variety of imaging options in terms of file-level copying, but most importantly, block-level replication. It can be used to create a backup scheme for incremental backups of files or do a complete backup to create a bootable image of the source drive.
  • Winclone: Winclone is a freeware tool that allows you to clone Boot Camp formatted partitions to an image or to another Boot Camp partition.
  • Firewire cable: Using a Firewire cable between the imaging Mac and the target Mac, the target machine in target disk mode, allows you to utilize the target machine’s hard disk volumes as an external Firewire hard drive. This simplifies the imaging process greatly.

CREATING THE MAC OS X SOURCE IMAGE

NOTE
You will not need to restart the source machine between partition clone operations.
  1. Boot the source machine into target disk mode by holding down the ‘T’ key immediately after powering on the machine.
  2. Run CarbonCopyCloner on the imaging machine.
  3. Choose the source Macintosh HD Firewire volume from the drop down list on the left column of the screen.
  4. Choose Backup everything under Clone options.
  5. Choose the option to create create a disk image from the drop down list in the right column.
  6. Choose a save location for the image.
  7. Click Clone.

CREATING THE WINDOWS SOURCE IMAGE

  1. Ensure the source machine is booted into target disk mode. If it is not, do so by holding down the ‘T’ key immediately after powering on the machine.
  2. Run Winclone on the imaging machine. (NOTE: You will need to install the NTFSprogs plugin.)
  3. Choose the Firewire Boot Camp partition from the Source: drop-down list.
  4. Click Image and choose a save location for the image.

RESTORING THE MAC OS X SOURCE IMAGE

  1. Ensure the target machine is booted into target disk mode. If it is not, do so by holding down the ‘T’ key immediately after powering on the machine.
  2. Run CarbonCopyCloner on the imaging machine.
  3. Select Restore from disk image… from the Source Disk drop-down menu in the left column.
  4. Select the Macintosh HD Firewire volume from the Target Disk drop-down in the right column.
  5. Select Backup Everything from the Clone Options drop-down list on the left.
  6. Check “Delete items that don’t exist on the source”.
  7. Click Clone.

RESTORING THE WINDOWS SOURCE IMAGE

  1. Ensure the target machine is booted into target disk mode. If it is not, do so by holding down the ‘T’ key immediately after powering on the machine.
  2. Run Winclone on the imaging machine.
  3. Click the Restore tab at the top of the Winclone window.
  4. Drag the Winclone source image to the Restore Image: field.
  5. Select the BootCamp Firewire volume from the Destination drop-down list.
  6. Click Restore.
  7. Set up

Configuring the Mac OS X and Windows Installations

  1. Boot into the Mac OS X operating system by holding down the Option key when powering on the machine.
  2. Click the Macintosh HD icon to boot into OS X.
  3. Change the computer name:
    1. Click the Apple in the top left of screen on the menu bar.
    2. Click System Preferences from the menu.
    3. Click the Sharing icon.
    4. Enter the computer name in the Computer Name field.
  4. Restart the computer, holding down the Option key to view the boot menu.
  5. Click the Windows icon to boot into the Windows operating system.
  6. Complete the sysprep wizard to name the machine and join it to the domain.
  7. Hold down the Option key when the system restarts to boot back into the Windows operating system.
  8. Right mouse click the Boot Camp taskbar item in the bottom right of the screen.
  9. Choose Boot Camp Settings from the menu.
  10. Click the Startup Disk tab at the top of the Boot Camp Settings window.
  11. Select Windows to set it as the default startup volume.
  12. Click OK.
  13. Shutdown the machine.