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Capture the Image of an Existing Node

Updated: January 13, 2014

Applies To: Microsoft HPC Pack 2008 R2, Microsoft HPC Pack 2012, Microsoft HPC Pack 2012 R2, Windows HPC Server 2008 R2

You can capture the image of an existing node, and then use that image to deploy other nodes. For example, if you are going to deploy several nodes on your cluster, you can start by deploying only one node at first, configure that node by installing software updates or adding programs, and then capture an image of that node so that it can be used as a base image for deploying the other nodes.

When you capture the image of a node, Microsoft® HPC Pack on the node is first removed, and then the operating system on the node is generalized by using the System Preparation Tool that is available in Windows Server (Sysprep). After the operating system on the node is generalized, the image of the node is captured and it is added to the image store on the head node. The image can then be used for node deployment.

noteNote
For more information about what happens when the operating system on the node is generalized, see What is Sysprep?.

ImportantImportant
  • If the nodes that you deploy using the captured image require special device drivers, you will need to add those drivers before the image is captured. The device drivers you add using HPC Cluster Manager are not available to captured images.

  • After you capture the image of an existing node, the node is moved to the Unapproved state, and it is shut down. Because the operating system on the node is generalized and HPC Pack is removed, you need to add the node to the cluster again by following the deployment method that you originally used for that node.

  • The node from which you capture the image must be configured to boot from Pre-boot Execution Environment (PXE) because it will be restarted and booted into Windows PE, where the image capturing process takes place.

  • If you want to configure the node by installing a program before you capture the image, contact the software company that created the program to determine if the generalization process will affect the original installation of the program.

  • The process of capturing the image of an existing node can take several minutes, during which HPC Cluster Manager will not be available to perform other actions.

  • If the node on which you are capturing the image contains a system reserved partition, the image capturing process will capture only that partition, not the partition that contains the Windows operating system. A system reserved partition may be present if the operating system was preinstalled by an original equipment manufacturer (OEM). To work around this problem, you can assign a node template to the node that deploys an unmodified Windows operating system image from the image store. This creates a single partition on the computer. Then, after the operating system is deployed and you configure the node by installing software updates or adding programs, you can capture the image.

  1. In Configuration, in the Navigation Pane, click Images.

  2. In the Actions pane, click Capture Image. The Capture Image dialog box appears.

  3. To select the node from which you want to capture the image:

    1. Click Select Node. The Select Node dialog box appears.

    2. On the list of nodes, click the node from which you want to capture the image, and then click OK.

  4. Type a name for the image.

  5. To start capturing the image, click Create Image.

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