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I have 8 HP ProLiant DL380 servers that are mounted in a data center. I have to deploy Windows Server 2016 Datacenter operating system on all of them using a particular customer's (modified) ISO.

Unfortunately, the only way I can access this installation ISO is inside the DC security zone, which means I will have to create a bootable USB drive on-premise to install the farm. Another problem is that according to customer's SLA using any additional software for creating bootable drives is prohibited. Is there any way of creating a Windows Server 2016 bootable USB using only native Windows 2016 Server tools?

Thanks in advance!

  • 1
    Forget this and mount and boot from the ISO image in iLO. – Michael Hampton Feb 28 '17 at 21:01
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Yes. This can be done using native Windows commands like diskpart, bootsect and copy (xcopy).

Here are the guides that cover the topic exactly: https://www.starwindsoftware.com/blog/how-to-create-bootable-windows-server-2016-usb-thumb-drive-for-installing-os

http://itproguru.com/expert/2016/05/create-bootable-windows-server-2016-usb-thumb-drive-for-installing-os/

Hope this helps.

  • 2
    Thank you so much!! The first link is exactly what I need! – Mind Parallax Feb 28 '17 at 13:31
  • 4
    It would be better if you included the actual directions; links can and do go down. – Yet Another User Mar 1 '17 at 1:52
  • Whilst this may theoretically answer the question, it would be preferable to include the essential parts of the answer here, and provide the link for reference. – Jenny D Mar 21 '17 at 20:03
14

That should be possible.

  • Mount ISO image, say drive letter is x:
  • Mount USB Drive, letter y:
  • Run elevated cmd
  • Run diskpart wipe the drive and create an active partition:
  • Caution, this will wipe your disk! list disk, select disk <nr. of pendrive>, clean, select partition 1, active, exit
  • Copy bootsector -> x:, cd boot, bootsect /nt60 y:
  • Copy everything from ISO to thumb drive xcopy x:\*.* y:\ /E /H /F
  • Done.

Handle with care and double check those commands! This works for Server 2012 and should work for 2016, too.

  • 1
    This is golden! Man you should have a script and a blog page for that. – BaronSamedi1958 Feb 28 '17 at 14:52
  • Well, I think this works from Server 2008 R2 onwards... – duenni Feb 28 '17 at 14:57
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    In my experience the USB drive needs to be formatted FAT32 and not NTFS in order to actually install off of for reasons unknown to me. – JBaldridge Feb 28 '17 at 23:20
  • @JBaldridge UEFI require the bootfiles placed on FAT32 partition. – Martheen Mar 1 '17 at 7:22
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The closest thing that comes to mind is to use Microsofts own tool: Windows USB DVD tool

  • 2
    I am afraid this one will not pass. The requirement is quite clear - usage of pure Windows 2016 only is allowed :-( – Mind Parallax Feb 28 '17 at 10:54

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