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Network service boot

Updated: January 21, 2005

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

Network service boot

A network service boot can be initiated by either the user of a Pre-Boot eXecution Environment (PXE) remote boot-enabled client computer or by a special remote boot disk provided for pre-Net PC/PC98 computers.

To invoke the network service boot request, the user presses a particular key (for example, F12) when prompted during the client computer startup sequence. The client computer receives an Internet Protocol (IP) address from the DHCP server, requests a network service boot, and then downloads the Client Installation Wizard.

For more information about how a remote service boot is carried out through PXE, see PXE architecture.

For more information about user choices and actions during a network service boot, see Perform a network installation using RIS.

The user is prompted for user name, password, and domain name during the initial phase of the Client Installation Wizard process. Remote Installation Services uses Group Policy within Active Directory to determine which installation options are appropriate for the user. The user is then given a list of operating system installation choices that are determined by the user's credentials or security group membership.


  • This topic does not apply to Windows Server 2003, Web Edition.

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