When I try to import windows 10 image to MDT, I am getting below error. Even with local folder or with mounted iso file.

enter image description here

Please suggest how to fix this,

The error is "THe specified source directory doesn't contain install.wim" But this is the iso file I downloaded from msdn and working with manual install of OS.


MDT is unable to process ESD files and is not aware of install.esd files. To fix your issue, you must convert the install.esd into an install.wim file.

ESD files are included in modern Windows installs and contains a compression algorithm that makes them read only with DISM. They are also called push button reset recovery images. The compression is much better than a normal WIM file.

As a best practice to ensure that your deployment share isn't too big, make sure you delete the install.esd file after you are finished with it.

If you want to import multiple indexes into MDT, you will need to run step 2 for every image index you want in the final install.wim. DISM is intelligent enough to recognise an existing install.wim and it will add an additional index to it.

How to Fix

To use modern install images (ESD Files):

  1. Copy the contents of your ISO to a read/write folder.
  2. Use DISM to extract the ESD compressed WIM file Index(s) of your choice to an Install.WIM in the sources directory of the extracted ISO.
    It is best practice to remove the install.esd file after you have finished exporting the image. This prevents the deployment share from being too big.
  3. Use MDT to import the extracted installer ISO with the converted install.wim.


  • Thank you, I tried converting but the esd file is 3.2 GB and has 6 indexes. When I tried to created separate wim file for each index, it came to 6x3.2G Any suggestions, how to decrease the overall size as there is repetition of data. And also, is there any way to import centos/ubuntu images to MDT. Jul 13 '20 at 11:40
  • You can export the WIM files on top of themselves. it is append instead of replace. You can still keep all the install.wim indexes in the main install image. MDT is not compatible out of the box with Linux distros. With some hacking you can make it work. E.g. I run MDT off of a raspberry pi for my portal deployment engine. but adding Ubuntu as deployable is tricky. I would try something with VHDs but this is a separate topic. Jul 13 '20 at 14:54
  • Just use the example in the How to extract WIM/ESD Images docs with the same destination image, it will append new indexes to the destination. Jul 13 '20 at 14:56
  • @UdayKiranReddy, does the explanation of how DISM works fix your multiple image issue? Jul 16 '20 at 15:26
  • 1
    Yes, it is working. Thank you so much.Can you suggest any on Linux deployment also. Jul 18 '20 at 9:17

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.