Installing Windows on computers is a tough task for network administrators with large amount of remote clients. An add-on component on server operating system, called Remote Installation Service (RIS) is offered by Microsoft. This add-on component is available on Windows 2003 and later versions of the server operating system. When the computer authenticates on the network, RIS gives administrators a method to force clients to install upgrades, software and operating systems.
The Server side
Windows help team explains that the first part of the installation process is the Server. When the server operating system is configured, RIS is not installed automatically. This service can be made available through the Control Panel in the “Add/Remove Software” configuration window. Most server software is added and removed in the “Add/Remove Software” component. During server configuration, this window is used several times, as a network administrator. The configuration wizard helps the administrator through the process, using the “risetup” command. There are two major parts to the configuration-setting up permissions, for the client and pointing to the location of the Windows installation files. The installation files on the hard drive are the fastest method for clients to install over a network. The process is slowed down using a DVD or CD. Saving files to a directory on the hard drive improves performance, with multiple clients querying the server. Right-click the directory and choose “Sharing”, Once the files are copied to the hard drive. This window configures permission for client access.
The Client side
A setting for the boot up device is available in the computer’s BIOS. The hard drive or a network card can be the boot up device. For the client machine, Windows help team instructs to do the booting using the network card. Booting from the network card forces the computer to query the network for boot files. The client computer then finds the RIS server and RIS instructs to install the Windows to the client. The client machine is able to boot and start the installation since Windows installation files include boot files. For installing Windows, user needs some basic knowledge, such as navigating the boot screen and setting options. Instructions need to be given by the Administrator on how to complete the installation.
This is how the Windows help team advices to install Windows over network.