Update: In addition to this post, check out my guide on customizing custom-ocs.
In a previous post, I talked about using disk imaging software for setting up Windows in a corporate environment. For years, I’ve used Symantec Ghost, specifically Ghost 8. I’d previously manually run Ghost from a network drive, booting from a custom floppy bootdisk with a DOS Novell client to allow me to log into our network (we still use Novell). A couple of years ago, I switched to running Ghost from an external USB hard drive that stored all the image files. To make it even more automatic, I wrote a tiny utility in assembly that reads the model info from the computer’s BIOS and uses the correct image file.
As time went on, though, the shortcomings of Ghost became apparent. The biggest one is speed: by running Ghost in a DOS environment, I was limited to USB 1.1 speeds. Ghosting a 20 GB Windows 7 partition would take around 40 minutes. When you are ghosting many machines at once, the quicker you can do it, the better. I knew of a great, free alternative in Clonezilla, but would it work for what I needed?
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