EasyBCD and CrucibleWDS imaging software

#1
Hello, I have a situation that I have googled for a while but havent come across anything that is helping my situation.

I have a "golden image" that I recently built that contains 3 partitions.
1 - WindowsOS Drive (boot drive)
2 - WinPE partition (boot recovery)
3 - Recovery (where the windows image to restore is located)

I assign partition 2 letter E and partition 3 letter F, I added the entry into the boot menu with EasyBCD, rebooted, menu works and when I choose either option, they work fine. Awesome, but thats not going to work for me so I then removed the drive letter from partition 2, and in EasyBCD it also removed it, and assigned the partitions unique guid in place. Exactly what I want to happen. Restarted and tested both menu options, works great. However, I then sysprep the machine, take an image of it with CrucibleWDS, it does its partition resizing, etc.

After deploying this to a machine, the boot menu appears and the Windows7 option works as it should but if I try the WinPE option I receive "Status: 0xc0000225 the boot selection failed because a required device is inaccessible" and when I look at bcdedit I see everything is fine with the C:\ drive, but for the WinPE drive I see only the device ID, which I presume is the issue. After restoring the image, I am thinking that partition is getting a new guid/ID and that is causing this issue.

If I keep a drive letter assigned to this partition, I believe it to work even after imaging, but I dont want to have my users see these drive letters.

Does anyone have a work around for this, or another way for me to go about this?

Thank you, let me know if you need any more information.
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#2
The BCD entries are tied to the partition GUIDs, except for the placeholder "boot" which points to the active partition. You should configure your cloning software to retain the partition guid for the WinPE partition, or else store the recovery in a VHD or WIM on the C: drive.

Remember that you need an EasyBCD deployment license for each machine you clone an EasyBCD configuration too.
 
#3
The second partition boots the winPE and the third partition stores the .WIM file that I would use to restore.
About the licenses, right now I am doing this as a way to force myself to learn how the boot process works, and no deployments are being actively used other than by myself in my test environment. After a deployment, if my process works I will document what I did and when they tell us we need to goto Windows 10 thats when I will be in a better position to as for money to buy licenses, but for the time being I hope its ok that I am using this software as a proof of concept - I need to find 2 products that do what I need, and CrucibleWDS is a great cloning program, just need to get the recovery partition working correctly to show my supervisor and see about some money.