Creating a PXE-bootable RDP clients using TS-config.
This document describes how to create PXE booting clients using AnywhereTS-config.
- AnywhereTS, can be downloaded from http://anywherets.com
Ensure that the application server is completely up to date with all security patches, hot fixes and service packs. Check that you have a static IP-address on the network adapter connecting to the thin clients.
Time to implement
- 1-3 minutes to make create and deploy a boot image.
AnywhereTS is a windows based tool, that enables you to convert standard PCs into full-featured diskless thin clients, using Thinstation.
To make it easier to understand we are describing a specific scenario. There are numerous other setups possible. Adjust for your specific configuration.
You have a Windows 2000/2003 server with a static IP-address and Terminal Services installed. This server will be the main server for the thin client solution. No other servers will be needed in this scenario.
A separate LAN will be used for the thin client solution (recommended in order not to interfere with other network traffic when booting the clients). A second network adapter on the server will be used for the thin client network.
- Starts a terminal session to the same server
2. System requirements
Different computers can used as thin clients. At least a Pentium II/266 with 32 MB RAM is recommended, but slower machines can be used. A network adapter with 10 Mbit/s is more than enough for a client, due to the fact that a client newer exceeds a bandwidth of 2 Mbit/s if you not are copying files from your local CD on to the server. Then there is the usual stuff: keyboard, mouse and desktop speaker etc. All the clients should be set to PXE boot.
3. Download AnywhereTS software
Please visit the following internet location and download the most recent version of AnywhereTS:
Click on the download link
Save this file on the terminal server.
4. Install AnywhereTS
Unzip the newly donwloaded file to a location on the terminal server. Run Setup.exe
5. Start AnywhereTS
The first time intro screen is displayed. Simply press next.
6. Select task
This is the main dialog.
We are planning to deploy a network boot solution, Select “Create a client that boots from network” Press Next.
You can also do other tasks like creating CD images and PXE floppy disks.
7. Configure DHCP options
This dialog displays the different options for the network services. AnywhereTS has a built in DHCP and TFTP server. In order for your clients to boot from network, you will need a DHCP and a TFTP service. Since we have a separate network for the thin client solution we need a DHCP server for this network and therefore we select “I want to use the built-in AnywhereTS DHCP server”. Press next.
Most networks already have a DHCP server and it is strongly recommended not to have more then one DHCP server in a network. If you already have a DHCP server, do not to use the built in DHCP.
By implementing a special configuration workaround, we have managed to support MS-DHCP and still run our DHCP. This solution could also work with other DHCP servers than the one from Microsoft, but testing with 3rd party DHCP servers have been limited, therefore the product do not officially support this configuration.
Summery: You must have a DHCP server running in order to make network boot work.
Advice: If you do not know how to install or administrate a DHCP server select the option “I want to use the built-in AnywhereTS DHCP server”.
8. Select network adapter
If you have more than one network adapter with a static IP-address, you need to select the adapter connected to to your thin clients. If not, proceed to 9.
Select the network adapter that is connected to the network being used by the thin clients. Press next.
9. Select terminal server
This dialog allows you to select a Terminal Server to connect to. Note: You can only use server name if you have a proper configured DNS server in your network, that is definied in your DHCP server. If not, enter an IP address. Since this is the terminal server we will be using, select “This computer”. Press next
10. Select boot image
Here you can select a boot image that will be displayed on your thin client during boot as an alternative to the text screen. Note, not all VBIOS supports the graphic mode needed to display the image. Therefore some clients will only display text.
11. Configure client graphics
This dialog allows you to configure the graphic options of the client. Note that for network booted clients, the new options will affect every client booting over the network.
Do to the fact that we have different hardware in our clients we are using auto detection. Press next
12. Configure client network
This dialog allows you to configure the network driver and assign a static IP address.
Advice: NEVER use the option “This IP address” when creating a network boot image. If you do, you will only be able to connect one client to the server. Select auto detection and since we are using more then one client to boot over the network we MUST “Use DHCP“. Press next
13. Configure client sound
This dialog allows you to configure the sound options of the client. Note that for network booted clients, the new options will affect every client booting over the network. Leave at autodetect and press Next.
14. Configure misc client options
This dialog allows you to configure a variety of options.
Time Zone: Note that this only affects internal time processing in the client. The clock displayed in the Windows taskbar is always the server clock when logged on to a terminal server.
Keyboard layout: Choose the keyboard you are using on the clients.
Daily reboot: Reboots the client after 24 hours, if the client is idle.
Autoplay inserted Audio CDs: Starts playing music if an audio CD is inserted in the client computer.
You can redirect the client’s floppy and/or CDROM to a drive letter if the terminal server is configured accordingly. Do this by selecting the options “Client’s floppy is A:” and “Client’s CDROM is D:”
The options under “Hardware problem fixes. Enable only if you need.”: Some hardware is only partly supported so if you are experiencing problems with your thin client you probably can fix those problems by disabling special features on that particular hardware, thereby avoiding the problem.
Select your time zone and keyboard layout. Press Next
Now, the new client is compiled. This can take some time, depending on what system you are running AnywhereTS-Config on. Normally the process takes less than 10 seconds.