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I have RIS (Remote Installation Service) on my server and I have XP image on RIS.

Everything runs great, but I have one little problem. When I use the remote installation process, the computer asks for network drivers. So my question is the following:

How can I provide these drivers? Do I need to include them on the image?

I would like to have some folder on server and put all drivers there and when a setup needs thenm it can go there and take all he needs. Is it posible to do this?

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

It's been too long since I've used RIS but can't you just add the drivers to the install image? cf.


Putting a driver into a RIS image

Through dumb luck I happened to stumble upon a third KB article [3] in which MS describes how to fix a bug in SYSPREP. The bug causes multiple identical entries to be added to DevicePath. What is DevicePath? It’s a registry value that contains a list of paths in which Windows searches for drivers when it detects new PNP hardware. Windows automatically performs an unattended installation of any suitable driver it finds. The default value for DevicePath is “%SystemRoot%\inf” and to be precise, it’s a list of locations in which Windows looks for INF files. The INF files then tell Windows where to look for the real driver files (SYS and CAT and the like).

Why don’t we just copy the raw driver files into a directory that’s part of the image and then update the DevicePath accordingly? As the driver directory belongs to the image, it will be copied to the machine’s harddisk. When the machine reboots after the image was installed, Windows should (re-)detect PNP hardware it doesn’t have a driver for and look up possible driver locations from DevicePath. This time Windows will find our driver and install it. Bingo! It’s kind of like pre-staging the driver by copying the driver files onto the target machine and telling it where to find the driver in case the hardware for it is detected. How do you do this?

1.Create the directory \​SERVER\​REMINST\​Setup\​Language\​Images\​RIPrep\​i386\​Mirror1\​UserData\​Drivers\​Broadcom.

Remember that RIPrep stands for the name of your image and Broadcom signifies your hardware. These names are just examples and you will need to adjust them to your requirements.

2.Copy the driver files into the newly created directory.

3.On the server or your personal workstation, fire up regedt32 if it’s Windows 2000 or regedit if it’s an XP machine. (My personal workstation has Windows XP on it and so I use regedit.)

4.Load the Software registry hive that’s part of the image by selecting HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE and choosing Load Hive on the File menu. Navigate to \​SERVER\​REMINST\​Setup\​Language\​Images\​RIPrep\​i386 \​Mirror1\​UserData\​WINNT\​SYSTEM32\​CONFIG and pick the Software file.

5.Type RIS Image as the temporary name of the hive.

6.In the registry tree, navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\​RIS Image\​Microsoft\​Windows\​CurrentVersion and in the right pane double click the DevicePath value.

7.Append ;%SystemDrive%\​Drivers\​Broadcom to the value.

8.Unload the hive by navigating to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\​RIS Image and selecting Unload Hive on the File menu. Don’t forget this step because otherwise the hive will not be saved until you reboot your personal workstation.

9.Install the RIS image on a test machine.


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This worked for me :) – gedO Feb 26 '12 at 15:24

It has been a long time since I used RIS but I don't remember there being a native way to integrate drivers. You could look at using nLite to integrate your drivers simply point to your source flat file directory. I would suggest a 2008 R2 install with MDT and WDS as they have superseded RISK.

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I would like to have some folder on server and put all drivers there and when a setup needs thenm it can go there and take all he needs. Is it posible to do this?

Yes, it is totally possible. MS Had th same idea. They also realized products needsu opdates so they put uit - many many years ago - into the successor. Upgrade your server to something not totally outdated and you find the functionaltiy in WDS.

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You tell him it's "totally possible" but then you ridicule him for using outdated software instead of even bother trying to provide an answer? – Ryan Ries Jan 17 '12 at 14:08

Likewise to Tim Brigham it's been a long time since I did this, but as I recall, you need to install the drivers in the i386 folder on the RIS server


You need to copy the .sys, .inf and .cat files I think. Once you restart the Remote Install Service it should generate a .pnf file (compiled .cat file).

That should be enough for the installer to recognise the driver.

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