I'm trying to convert a site imaging procedure from (install old image, update image, recapture image) to (have image on VM, update, snapshot, sysprep, capture, roll back to the snapshot).

The first step of this, of course, is to put the existing image on the VM, and in order to do that, I need to PXE boot the VM. This is failing on Virtualbox on a Windows host, Virtualbox on a Mac host, and VMWare Workstation on a Windows host, but I am able to PXE boot a physical computer and image it with no issues.

The VM does get a valid IP. I have booted the VM to a Linux LiveCD and pinged back and forth to make sure networking works.

This is the relevant section (where it fails):
WDSNBP started using DHCP Referral.
Contacting Server: (Gateway:
No response from Windows Deployment Services server.
Launching pxeboot.com...

On a physical computer, I don't get the "No response" line, instead booting proceeds.

Since this is failing on multiple VMs on multiple computers, I'm suspecting something is wrong with my WDS settings. Any idea what could be causing this?

Reply to comments:
Imaging a physical machine works: (and the appearance is identical up to the no response line)

WDSNBP started using DHCP Referral.
Contacting Server: (Gateway:
Architecture: x64
Contacting Server:

Downloaded WDSNBP from imaging.company.corp

Press F12 for network service boot

(When I've spun up testing VMs, I've set them as x64, so that is probably not it.)

Also, the VM and physical machine both get IPs in / 22, so that's not the issue.

EDIT for reply to answer:
Good thinking, but that's not it. The Virtualbox extensions are installed, and it's also failing under VMWare.

Last edit:
Worked-around. Since it's a VM that's not booting, we built boot .isos that could just live on the virtual host, using these instructions: http://www.eversity.nl/blog/2012/05/windows-deployment-services-how-to-create-a-bootable-deployment-iso/

  • 2
    What's up with your gateway?
    – MDMoore313
    Jun 26, 2014 at 17:41
  • 1
    To expand on what @BigHomie says, you're trying to use the any address as a gateway, so it's trying to use anything that will respond to it ... you're running this in a VM, so maybe it's getting a response from the host (or a vswitch, or whatever), and the traffic isn't able to reach its intended destination. If you manually specify your gateway (can you?) properly, you may get better results, as would possibly testing this from a physical machine, rather than a VM. Jun 26, 2014 at 17:46

3 Answers 3


Use pxeboot.com instead of wdsnbp.com in your DHCP config at 067 Bootfile name. For me was working.


If you are using Virtualbox then you need to add the extension. The extension enables the PXE lib from intel. Plus extra USB features.

You also need to make sure that the connection type is bridged (for direct access to network). I had some issues with having a connection without having it bridged.

Go here: https://www.virtualbox.org/wiki/Downloads and download the approate software (don't forget the expansion pack).

AND good luck!


Make sure that in both VM`s the network is the same, and the system is booting from the network, and or the HDD. Also Make sure that the server where AD is is also on.

It works everytime!

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