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In BETA 1 we supported monitoring of Windows deployments using ENGL Imaging Toolkit. With BETA 2, we've extended support to include any task-based deployment solution. In this blog, I'll configure Deployment Monitor to track the progress of Windows deployments using Symantec Ghost Solution Suite (GSS). If you're using a different Windows deployment solution, don't worry as this blog will point you in the right direction.


Installing Deployment Monitor

You'll need a physical or virtual machine running Windows Server 2016 or Server 2012 R2, IIS and SQL Server (local/remote). Ensure you check out the system requirements found in the BETA 2 documentation before installing Deployment Monitor.

Note: Remember to only ever install BETA software on non-production servers!


Configuring Deployment Monitor

Once Deployment Monitor has been installed and a license has been applied, open the Web Console.

  1. In the Management Solution tab, select Other.

  2. In the Deployment Process tab, enter the number of deployment phases that constitute a complete Windows deployment. Deployment Monitor uses phases to calculate the overall progress of machine builds. Phases can include a number of tasks, but we'll come on to that later. For example, if you have Imaging, Configuration, and Application installation phases, enter 3.

  3. In the Status Updates tab, add log files that Deployment Monitor will collect during status updates from the machine being deployed. The OnError flag ensures the log file is only uploaded to the Deployment Monitor server when a status update is sent with an error.


Sending status updates

Once Deployment Monitor has been configured for custom deployment, you need to copy the included DMStatus.exe (there are 32 and 64-bit versions) to a share that is accessible to the machine at deployment time. For GSS, we recommend copying DMStatus to a folder on the eXpress share.

DMStatus gathers machine inventory and log files, which are sent to the Deployment Monitor server. Using DMStatus command-line switches, the Deployment Monitor server, phase index, task description and optional error message can be sent.

DMStatus.exe /server:”<server>[:<port>]” /phase:”<index>” /task:”<description>” /error:”<error_message>”

A typical GSS job includes several tasks. For Deployment Monitor, we need to think of how those tasks will be grouped into phases (see Deployment Process settings above).

Before each phase and GSS task, we need to run DMStatus to ensure Deployment Monitor correctly calculates machine progress. Use the GSS Run Script task to call DMStatus with the correct command-line switches. At the end of the deployment process, DMStatus must be run with the last phase number and a status of finished, which tells Deployment Monitor that the deployment has completed.

The following lines illustrate the order that DMStatus should be called:

dmstatus /server:"deploymon" /phase:1

dmstatus /server:"deploymon" /phase:1 /task:"Restoring Windows 10 image"

dmstatus /server:"deploymon" /phase:1 /task:"Installing critical drivers"

dmstatus /server:"deploymon" /phase:2

dmstatus /server:"deploymon" /phase:2 /task:“Installing drivers"

dmstatus /server:"deploymon" /phase:3

dmstatus /server:"deploymon" /phase:3 /task:“Installing Office"

dmstatus /server:"deploymon" /phase:3 /task:“Installing WinZIP"

dmstatus /server:"deploymon" /phase:3 /status:"finished“


Sending status update with an error

If you detect an error during the deployment, run DMStatus with the optional /error switch. In the Web Console, the error will be visible in red from the live and history views, as well as the detailed status.

dmstatus /server:"deploymon" /phase:2 /task:“Installing drivers" /error:"Failed to install drivers" 


Web Console

In the Web Console, there are live progress and build history views. 

For a given machine, detailed status displays all phases and tasks.

In BETA 2 the log viewer has had a face lift and includes full text search and highlighting, and the ability to find errors and warnings in all uploaded log files.



Downloading BETA 2

Deployment Monitor 2.0 BETA 2 includes support for both ENGL Imaging Toolkit and custom task-based deployment solutions.

To get involved, sign up for the BETA and get testing!