Middlebury

Mac Deployment

Creating a NetBoot Image

  1. Get the latest Mac model available.
  2. Use the install disk that came with that Mac to install Mac OS X -- carefully choose/customize the installation options (decide whether to include additional fonts, printer drivers, etc).
    Read the note regarding the languages listed there.
    Starting with Snow Leopard, the installer does not do a clean install by default. Instead it does an Archive and Install leaving some old data on the disk. If you want a clean install, you will need to open Disk Utility from the Installer disk and erase the disk before starting the install.
  3. IMPORTANT: When the installation finishes, restart the Mac while holding the T key on the keyboard. This ensures that the Mac is placed into target disk mode before it starts initializing and booting the new system. This creates a more universal image.
  4. Once the Mac is in target disk mode, connect it with a firewire 800 cable to another Mac. The other Mac is preferably running the latest OS.
  5. The other Mac needs to have the latest Server Admin Tools installed (free).
  6. Double-click the workflow from bigcat -> Software -> zzAdminTools -> Image.
  7. System image utility will open.
  8. Adjust the workflow if needed:
    - it is especially important to ensure that the workflow points to the Mac that's in target disk mode.
    - it is especially important to choose a local folder as the destination for the new netboot image
  9. Create the netboot image with system image utility. This takes about 2.5 hours for a base image.
  10. When done, copy the new image to bigcat -> NetBootSP0.
  11. Open Server Admin and connect to bigcat. Under Netboot settings, ensure that the new image is enabled on.
  12. IMPORTANT: Edit the netboot configuration for the image to ensure that the new netboot image can only be used by the Mac models that are licensed for the latest version of Mac OS X.
  13. Test the new netboot image with a recent Mac model:
    If the computer has a Microphone (check System profiler => audio section), test the Microphone: Open Quick Time => New Audio Recording - then playback to test the speakers.
    If the computer has a Camera test the camera (open Quick Time => New Video Recording)
    Test the trackpad -> open a web page and try clicking, ctrl+clicking, and scrolling up/down and left/right.
    Play a high-def trailer from apple.com/trailers -- this tests the graphics card.

Booting and editing the image before creating the netboot image is discouraged. All the necessary applications and customizations are done after a Mac is reimaged.

Notes Regarding Mac Deployment

  1. Languages listed on the Mac OS X install disk: Note that the languages listed are localizations, they do not provide support for typing, grammar, etc. The English localization has all the typing, spell checking and grammar options available for any language.
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