Troubleshooting OSD Task Sequences in System Center Configuration Manager 2007

Written by Kip Ng, Principal Microsoft Premier Field Engineer.

OMicrosoft System Centerne of the most annoying things when we have a problem with OSD (Operating System Deployment) Task Sequences in Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager 2007 (ConfigMgr) is that you don’t usually get any error indicating any problem. Most of the time, all you see is the following screen and, after a short wait, you get a reboot and, depending on the advertisement configurations, it may boot up the hard drive instead because the advertisement is recorded.
ConfigMgr Splash Screen

Of course, it depends on how and where the Task Sequence was failing. In this example, I had a problem with incorrect CN name on my certificate. Meaning my ConfigMgr server certificate doesn’t having the appropriate FQDN as the subject name or as the subject alternate name. This is essential for Native mode. Unfortunately, you don’t usually get too much information from the server side on this. So how do we get more information on the issue to help us troubleshoot it properly?

7 Quick Steps for Troubleshooting OSD Task Sequences

Here are a couple of quick steps for you to prepare and to get more information on the issue from the target machine so that you can address it,
1. Firstly, enable the command support for the Windows PE Boot Image if you haven’t.
a. Go to the Operating System Deployment à Boot Images
b. Depending on which architecture you will be using (either x64 or x86), select it and go to the Properties for that item.
Enable the command support for the Windows PE Boot Image


c. Go to the Windows PE tab and then click the Enable Command support (testing only) check box and click OK.
Go to the Windows PE tab and then click the Enable Command support
2. Once you have done that, you will be prompted to update the distribution point. Click Yes.
3. With this setup, try booting up the target machine again. You may have to clear the PXE advertisement record.
4.  When WinPE boots up and you see the ConfigMgr background, press F8. A command prompt will come up like the following (and note that as long as the command prompt is active, the machine will not be rebooted):
When WinPE boots up you see the ConfigMgr background
5. From the command prompt, change directory to X:\Windows\Temp\SMSTSLog
6. Then enter Notepad SMSTS.log at the command prompt.
Notepad SMSTS.log


7. You should then be able to review the log to better understand the error that you are encountering.
For more Information on the list of log files in available in Configuration Manager 2007, check out this TechNet article.
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