Many devices can be updated only by performing a full update of the operating system image on the device (a process referred to as device imaging in this document). The Operating System Deployment feature of Configuration Manager lets you deploy operating system images to devices. However, the Operating System Deployment feature requires certain services that not all devices support, such as Windows Deployment Services (WDS) and Pre-Execution Environment (PXE) boot support.
The device imaging feature of Device Manager 2011 enables device manufacturers to support device imaging for their devices, even if those devices do not support WDS and PXE. This is accomplished through the integration of custom device imaging solutions with Configuration Manager, and by using components provided by the device manufacturer. This lets you use the features of the device manufacturer’s device imaging solution while you are using a familiar UI in the Configuration Manager console to image collections of devices.
For more information about device imaging, see Device Imaging.