How to create OS image? | Creating OS image - ManageEngine OS Deployer

Performing online imaging

Before initiating the imaging process, ensure that you set up the desired system with the required OS and applications. After setting up the system, follow the steps given below to perform online imaging,

    1. Click on the Create tab
    2. Click Online Imaging under Image & Backup and select Create image.
    3. Select the office in which the imaging computer (target computer) is located. It can be either local or remote office for on-premise edition whereas it can be only be remote office for cloud edition.
    4. Specify the computer details to install image creator components:
      Specify the details of the computer (the desired system which you have set up with the required OS and applications) from which you want to capture the image. Ensure that the desired system where imaging will be performed has the following privileges,
      • Admin$ privileges.
      • The system user should have administrator privileges.
      • Remote access privileges.

       Image creator components will be now installed on the desired system to perform imaging.

    5. Disk Partitions:
      Select the disk partitions which you want to image. You will be able to see the available disk partions in the desired system, select the partitions which you want to image. System/Firmware partitions, OS reserved partitions and OS partitions will be selected as default, ensure that you do not deselect them, as these partitions are required to boot the system after OS deployment.
    6. Image compression rate:
      Select the image compression rate. If you want the image creation speed to be faster, set the compression rate as low. We offer three compression rates low, medium and high,
      • Low Compression rate - Image creation speed will be faster.
      • Medium Compression rate - Image creation speed will be moderate.
      • High Compression rate - Image creation speed will be slow.
    7. Memory Usage:
      Select the Memory usage level. Based on the selected level, the memory (RAM) will be consumed during the imaging process.
    8. Image Repository:
      Select the appropriate image repository where you want to store the image. Create an image repository which is a network share whose credentials should have Read and Write privileges to store the captured image. Ensure that there is enough disk space in the repository to the store the images. During deployment, the client computers will access the images in the image repository.

Note:If you are creating an image of a computer located in a remote office, select the appropriate repository that is accessible in selected remote office.

  1. Now click on Start Imaging or Shrink partition & start imaging. The Shrink partition & start imaging option allows you to shrink the partitions before creating the image. Click here to know more on shrinking partitions.
  2. Driver Repository:
    If no driver repository is created before, a driver repository must be created. Drivers that are automatically detected while imaging will be stored here. Create a driver repository, a network share whose credentials should have Read and Write privileges to store the collected drivers. The client computers can then access the drivers from the driver repository enabling hardware independent deployment.

Imaging will now get started on the desired system. If needed you can pause, stop and re-image the imaging process. Once the imaging is complete, images will be stored in the image repository. The next step is to customize the image for deployment. Refer this document to know how to customize image deployment. 


  • Ensure that the desired system where the imaging is performed is always within the network during the process of imaging.
  • Do not shutdown/restart the system during imaging as it will interrupt the imaging process.
  • Disk partitions layout will be replicated in the target computer where the image will be deployed.

Key points: 

  • Imaging is supported on all Windows OS from Windows XP and above.
  • Imaging is supported on basic disks that use the Master Boot Record (MBR) and GUID Partition Table (GPT) partition styles.
  • Imaging is supported on HDD (Hard disk drive), SSHD (Solid State Hybrid Drive) and SSD (Solid State Drive) hard disk types.
  • Imaging is supported on HyperV virtual machines.

You have now successfully captured the image using the online imaging method. 

You can also perform offline imaging by creating Bootable media. After image creation, the next step is to customize the image for deployment. Refer this document to know how to customize image for deployment. 

Need more help?

If you still have concerns in creating OS images, avail a free personalized technical demo at your convenience.

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