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Was wondering if others could provide some feedback. I've been tasked with setting up a WDS server to deploy images to workstations over the network. I've gotten it up and running, captured my first image, and just finished deploying it to a workstation.

My question is, for an image (.WIM file) that is approximately 16 GB in size (various files and applications are included in this image), is a deployment time of 40 minutes or so pretty typical/normal (time it takes during the expanding windows features, installing drivers, etc... phase)? I realize there could be other factors such as network utilization, etc... but my thoughts are that the image size obviously contributes to the amount of time it takes as the Standard Windows 7 install (just the install.wim without any applications, etc...) is pretty quick and takes maybe around 10 minutes to deploy.

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I am going to guess that because of the image size it will take longer, plus you have to account for your network transfer speeds.

Also if you have customized a lot of features with an unattend.xml then it will take longer as it has to implement those requested changes. It also may be that you have a slower processor. All of the files in a WIM file are compressed to save space (by default that is the case) and the processor will have to uncompress them to make them usable.


Bonus:

If you have not done an unattend.xml configuration, it might reduce your image size/deployment time as the system does not need some of the files present when using the unattend.xml. E.G. Installing a Windows Feature such as .Net Framework.

With unattend.xml it would not need to be shipped with all of the files in place.

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This is a long time for an image deployment. I try to get mine down below 25 minutes. But then I'm usually deploying to and from an SSD, and 40 minutes is not so long that it's unusual or unreasonable. Keep in mind that WDS supports multicast, so with the right network support you can you can deploy an image to many machines in parallel, rather than one after another in sequence.

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