Optiplex 740 Observations
- Kernel 2.6.27 RC9
- Fog .32
- Multiple Partition Non-Resizable Single Disk
Upload is perfect, it races through SDA and then starts with SDA2 (takes longer). There are no hangs or freeze. Now when it comes to download it will stop at 10% or so. It just halts. I also notice it starts with SDA2 and not SDA (why?). I assume it is skipping one of the partitions. I read that the Dell Utility can cause problems. Why? Because it mixed file systems? I believe the dell utility is FAT16. Does it fail because it’s mixed file systems on the hard drive? Any thoughts or opinions? What is the best method to remove it?
Thanks for the response.
Yes, I did reformat and rebuild the image. So I guess the the next thing to try is “single partition”. All of my other computers had no issues with the multipartition non-resizeable. I will see what happens.
You cannot simply remove the utility partition and have a successful upload/deploy; then you would have a gap at the start of the disk and that confuses FOG. However, if you did format the disk and re-build the windows image completely then this should not be a problem.
And, yes, try “single partition re-sizable”, that works for almost everything that I do including [U][B]true[/B][/U] single-partition Windows XP and Windows 7 with the 100mb partition (for BitLocker) at the start of the drive. Yes, that is technically 2 partitions, but it is still programmed to work with “single partition re-sizable” setting with default windows 7 setup.
Thanks for the response.
No I don’t use Dell OEM Windows.
I deleted the partitions on the drive. For the utility partition I just used diskpart and had to use the ‘override’ command to get rid of the Dell Utility partition. I re-uploaded the image again and it still didn’t work. I used multi-part non resizeable. I only started with that one only because it sees to be what everyone uses on the forums. Technically though, it only has 1 partition. It’s the craziest thing… the next thing to try would be single partition in FOG. I haven’t had any time today to try it though and don’t know if it will matter.
So basically, no kernel or panic errors. Using recommended kernel from the problematic devices wiki. It uploads the image fine. When I go to deploy the image it will get to 1-10% and just hang and not go anywhere.
It definitely matters what partition type you have selected for your image. If there is in fact a Dell Utility partition, it must be set to “Multiple partitions, single disk” under the image definition.
That being said Dell utility partitions DEFINITELY do cause problems and IMHO they are not useful at all (if you need to boot to a utility partition you can always use a flash drive or CD, but FOG has much of its own diagnostic tools so I have almost never needed this in years of use). Personally, I do not think that it makes sense to have multiple partitions for the average workstation, it just complicates things and creates errors. Certainly if you are using Windows XP single partition is the way to go; if you are on Windows 7 then an argument could be made for single or multiple Windows partitions but still it should not include Dell utility partitions for the reasons you mention (FAT16, Dell partition first on the disk, etc.)
Regarding removing the Dell utility partition, this is very difficult to do while capturing the existing 2nd partition that you actually want to keep (with windows, software, etc). Several years ago, after a few days of trying to do this, I just gave up; I think that it is impossible. I was able to remove it, but then it would not upload/download because there was nothing at the start of the disk (I did try moving the NTFS partition that I wanted to save to the start of the disk, that did not work). My solution was I wiped the drive completely and rebuilt the image with a single NTFS partition (the way it should be). In my case, the only reason I was even trying to do this is because we wanted to save a few images from our old system (Norton Ghost) and they had the Dell utility partitions embedded into them (at the start of the disk!!). As it turned out this was next to impossible and so we just rebuilt our images using a generic DVD install of Windows and everything has been great since then.
Also, just FYI Dell installations of Windows are definitely inferior to Retail or VLK (volume) installations for reasons I will not go into right now. They will work, but a volume installation directly from Microsoft is the way to go, if you can afford it. And personally I would never use the Dell installation that came on the computer’s hard drive, those are bloated and horrible. If you cannot use retail or VLK versions of Windows at least do yourself a favor and install a fresh, single partition installation from the Dell “Windows install media”, so it will not be bloated with junk the way Dell sets them up.