This is one of probably many question and answer (Q&A) posts focused on the VSTS Rangers Image factory, which I will be introducing on Monday next week. As part imageof the dog fooding and testing, we have encountered some interesting “self inflicted features” :)

 

Symptom

Installing a hyper-v based VSTS Rangers base image, using the VSTS Rangers Image factory, is running forever. The average processor utilisation on the hyper-v host is averaging 3%, while network utilization is higher than normal. After 3 hours the installation process is still half way trough the first task sequence, the operating system installation.Pissed Blue Person Breaking A Flat Screen Computer Monitor With A Hammer Clipart Illustration Graphic

Cause

  1. In our setup we have three factories around the world and the factory (FACT-MDT-01) experiencing the slowdown typically replicates its deployment share from the master factory (FACT-MDT-00), using the following RoboCopy command: ROBOCOPY.exe" \DeploymentShare$">\DeploymentShare$">\DeploymentShare$">\\<FACT-MDT-00-IP-ADDRESS>\DeploymentShare$ c:\DeploymentShare /MIR.
    image
  2. As per guidance the next step is to edit the Bootstrap.ini file, which is overwritten with the file from the master factory during the robocopy, to point at the VSTSR-MDT-CA factory and not the FACT-MDT-00 factory.
    image
  3. Thereafter the ISO images can be rebuilt and used for the installations.
    image

If you are experiencing dramatic slowdowns, please verify that step 2, as above, has been completed before the ISO images are rebuilt. If not, as was the case in our slow down scenario, the installation will proceed as per the definition in the incorrect ISO image and pull the installation pieces from the remote factory (A) and not the local factory (B) as expected. The result is an introduction of additional network traffic, huge network latency and therefore a dramatic slowdown.
image

Resolution

  • If the Bootstrap.ini file is incorrect on your factory, i.e. VSTR-MDT-CA, i.e.

[Settings]
Priority=Default

[Default]
DeployRoot=\\FACT-MDT-00\DeploymentShare$

SkipBDDWelcome=YES

UserID=MDTUser
UserPassword=pass@word1
UserDomain=FACT-MDT-00

  • Abort all installations.
  • Edit the bootstrap.ini file and correct the error. i.e.

[Settings]
Priority=Default

[Default]
DeployRoot=\\FACT-MDT-01\DeploymentShare$

SkipBDDWelcome=YES

UserID=MDTUser
UserPassword=pass@word1
UserDomain=FACT-MDT-01

  • Rebuild the ISO images.
  • Re-start the installations.

It is amazing how 2 digits changed in a configuration file can have such an impact :|