Win95 auto-install from Samba server (was Re: Comments on Samba mailing list)

Louis Mandelstam lma at
Sat Oct 4 09:09:23 GMT 1997

On Fri, 3 Oct 1997, Bart Dorsey wrote:

> Anyway.. do you think perhaps we could work together to come up with a
> little setup of somekind ( a boot disk image with scripts or something) that
> would automate as much of this as posssible? I'm sure the linux community

Well, I'd be happy to answer any questions you have - I effectively
already have a completely automated setup which is working.  The work
which I still need to do include adding some more applications and getting
automatic printer selection to work.  Most of the tricky stuff is behind
me now.

However, once I have the system installed at the site I'm developing it
for, and my schedule calms down a bit, I'm thinking of going over it
again, rewriting it with more consideration for speed, prettiness and
portability (ie making it easier to customize for other sites' local
conditions).   I expect I'll make a contributable package out of this, put
it up for FTP somewhere and release it under GPL, and announce it on
places such as the samba-list.

This is all if time permits, of course.

> would really like such a thing, as would the samba community...Also.. I've
> had the same problems with the 3COM ISA PnP cards... Perhaps if you use the
> 3c5x9cfg utils for linux and disable PnP they wouldn't do this? set them all

I only had problem autodetecting the cards when using Win95's setup.exe to
run the installation.   Switching to Linux fix the problem - none of the
machines on the network gave any problems at all, and once Win95 has been
installed and booted, it picks of the card reliably.

I've thought about getting the installation scripts to also standardize
the netcard parameters and disable PnP, but right now there is actually
more advantages to keeping them in PnP (ie I have to worry a tiny bit less
about trampling on any funny cards that one or two of the machines may

Since I've received quite a fair amount of correspondence following my
posts on samba-list yesterday, I'll be sure to keep the list informed of
developments.  There certainly seems to be some interest in doing
something similar at other sites (frankly, I'm not surprised after
fighting with setup.exe/msbatch.inf for so long) and I expect that even if
I don't get around to tidying up and generalizing the system soon, I'll
most likely details how it works on a web page somewhere, or perhaps post
the code I'm using itself.


Louis Mandelstam              Tel +27 83 227-0712   Symphony  /|\   /|\
Linux systems integration       Research {   } {   }
Johannesburg, South Africa    mailto:louis at (Pty)Ltd {___} {___}

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