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I am looking to implement (if possible/feasible) the ability to image a PC and Mac via our wireless network. Is this actually possible? I have read multiple documents that newer Macbook Airs can do this, but would that require having Multicasting on within our entire network? We have only have it on in 1 VLAN to minimize chatter on our network. Right now we have a PXE boot to gain access to a ghostcasting session that we instantiate. Is it possible to setup a wireless (netboot?) to PXEboot to ghostcasting?

I figure sending that much data over our wireless network ( which serves 13k+ users) would use a good portion of available bandwidth per VLAN. ( about 50GB in our image )

Any Ideas / alternatives?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 8 down vote accepted

There aren't standards in PXE for Wifi that make this feasible. Apple does "wireless netboot" functionality in some of their models, but this isn't going to help you with PXE booting PCs because it's purely proprietary.

Even if you could do this, I question the performance, reliability, and efficiency of using this method. You'd be soaking up a massive amount of your wireless bandwidth to stream a multicast image. I don't see how this would offer any significant advantages over wired connections. It would take forever to image a machine this way, it would probably be unreliable (Ghost is not known for handling a lossy network during imaging very well), and it would ruin the performance of the wireless network for everybody else at the same time.

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I agree - a simple example I give to people who moan to me about badly performing wifi - how does your landline (PSTN, not VOIP) compare to your mobile in terms of dropped calls and call quality? –  Robin Gill Jan 20 '12 at 21:26
    
Thank you for your input @EvanAnderson I figured it was not really feasible, just something on my mind and I couldn't find much information on it - besides Apple's new ability to wireless netboot. +1 –  Zero Stack Jan 23 '12 at 14:32

Yes this is possible!

Points (A) and point (B) could careless about "HOW" they're connecting for as long as there's a connection between them!

Whether WIRED or WIRE-LESS, they're blind to either side until "Turned On"

Once that is established, you're good to go!

I've done it and it WORK!

However I must agree with the performance issues, as the WIRED LAND does move data typically faster than Wireless. And may god help a wireless PXE trying to service a whole slew of wireless clients at once.

But as long as they're not all making data demands at once, the lagging effects are minimal!

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"I've done it and it work" is nowhere near close to an acceptable answer. How did you get PXE boot to work over wifi? How did you get the computer to join an SSID before it had an OS loaded? And drivers? Hmm! –  Mark Henderson Dec 21 '13 at 20:50

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