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Software Restore image creation
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Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Zurich
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Nov 21, 1999, 07:43 AM
 
I have created an in-store demo setup for iMacs and want to be able to do a Software Restore like with the Apple installation CD.

I copied the CD and swapped the image, but the Apple Software Restore Utility tells me that my image's checksum resource is outdated or missing.

Then I copied the missing resources from the original disk image--to no avail. I also tried Disk Copy 6.4.0 d38 which is supposed to somehow allow creation of Restore images, but I did not find the option, altho something is mentioned in the readme.

Could anyone help me here, this would creatly simplify iMac in-store management while allowing everyone to play around. Other solutions have proven to be too complicated to be considered by the mostly not Mac savvy retail personnel.

Greg from Zurich
     
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Nov 22, 1999, 11:13 AM
 
You need the Apple "ASR CCK" in order to make software restore images that work the way Apple's do.
     
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Nov 22, 1999, 11:24 AM
 
Dan Schmidt has put together a basic <A HREF="http://www.delta.edu/~dgschmid/asr.html"> tutorial page </A> on using Apple Software Restore (available with the <A HREF="http://support.info.apple.com/sp/supportpro.html">Apple Support Professional</A> program, or via the <A HREF="ftp://ftp.apple.com/developer/Development_Kits/Installer_SDK/Installer_SDK_1.2.3.sea.bin">Apple Installer SDK</A>).

Another, earlier, <A HREF="http://www.ctap.fcoe.k12.ca.us/ctap/restore.htm"> tutorial page</A> was put together by Reed Jackson on using ASR for Northern California K-12 schools.

Also, take a good look at the ASR instructions included in the Installer SDK. They provide most of the information you need, especially when something goes wrong (ie. checksum errors, etc.)...

ciao,
Caleb

[This message has been edited by cclauset (edited 11-22-1999).]

[This message has been edited by cclauset (edited 11-22-1999).]
     
slong
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Nov 22, 1999, 11:27 AM
 
To create Software Restore CDs you have to download the Installer SDK from Apple's developer's <a href="ftp://ftp.apple.com/developer/Development_Kits/Installer_SDK/Installer_SDK_1.2.3.sea.bin">Web site</a>. Inside it is the ASR (Apple Software Restore) engine. There's a decent tutorial included and some AppleScripts to get you started.

To get around the checksum error you are receiving, you have to run an AppleScript inside DiskCopy after you've imaged your source drive. It attaches the proper checksum to the image.

Once you've done that, the rest is easy. Feel free to email me if you need more help.

--
Seth Long
Network Administrator
Sound Publishing
Federal Way, WA http://www.soundpublishing.com
slong@soundpublishing.com
     
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Nov 22, 1999, 01:28 PM
 
I have been using Apple Software Restore for about two years. It's gratifying to see that others are now discovering this software, because when I started, I had to scrape to figure it out. I'm surprised to see that others have tutorials on-line. Why? I have posted information to many mailing lists, including Mac-Mgrs and the official Apple AppleShare IP and ANAT lists, and never heard of anyone else using the software. Only those who want to know more.

Unfortunately, the pace of my job as one of the main Mac admins for a large regional university hasn't let me document this as I'd like.

However, I do have some info at:
http://macos.rit.edu/docs.html

My "Standard Macintosh setup" guide is there in Adobe PDF (Acrobat 4) format. It talks about Apple Software Restore -- more from the standpoint of making successful images than just making any old image.

I have lots more information to share and hope to write it all down. I'm using Apple Software Restore's "restore in place" function to make building disk images (for when new system software comes out, for example) much easier.

The basics you need for Apple Software Restore:

1. Apple Installer SDK (available on Apple's Developer site), free -- it helps if you actually use the Apple Software Restore 2.01+ program from the Mac OS 8.5 (or later) system CD-ROMs (do a "find" to search for it), but you will still need the developer tools that come with the SDK to prepare regular Disk Copy disk images with a volume-level checksum (different from what Disk Copy normally uses)

2. Disk Copy, free with system software or for download. You need this to make an image, and then after that, to run the developer tools that create the volume-level checksum required for Apple Software Restore to work. (That checksum gets around the "missing or invalid checksum" error.)

3. Disk space! Lots of it, depending on what you are imaging. It helps if you have a server or a separate partition to create disk images onto.

4. Startup disk. Apple Software Restore cannot restore software to the current system disk. Therefore, you'll need a startup disk with Apple Software Restore, and access to wherever you've stored your disk images. (You *can* run Apple Software Restore from a network volume, and restore images off that volume, FYI.) In general, your copy of the Apple Software Restore program must be on the same disk as the image(s) you're restoring from.

[This message has been edited by Jaharmi (edited 11-22-1999).]

[This message has been edited by Jaharmi (edited 11-22-1999).]
Jeremy J. Reichman, aka "Jaharmi"
     
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Nov 22, 1999, 01:53 PM
 
Okay, I looked at the tutorial links posted for both Dan Schmidt and Reed Jackson. They both contain valuable information, pretty much what I would have said anyway. So if you're interested in Apple Software Restore in any capacity, it's good to read them.

Dan's page, though, contains some stuff that I would question. I haven't tried his replacement ASR script for Disk Copy, but I have never had the problem he mentions that led him to correct it. (And I make a new images on a weekly basis.) I also have not seen the problem he mentions led him to turn off "verify checksum" on his Disk Copy images; I leave Disk Copy set to its default settings. (In fact, I would recommend turning ON the "Zero block" option in Disk Copy, because it tends to wipe out the free space that the image file will take up on the hard disk you're saving it to, even if it takes longer to make the image in the first place. Why have extra data hanging around -- it's kinda like the Microsoft Office GUID problem...)

The older versions of Apple Software Restore are very sensitive to Date/Time info; if you use 2.01 or later (available on the system CD's), this seems to have gone away. Otherwise, it's helpful to have a Date & Time control panel on your startup/restoration disk, so you can turn DST on or off. (This will generally fix the "missing or invalid checksum" errors on images that you know you've prepped correctly.) Note that you can put Date & Time cp's on a server and use them there (but they are different between Mac OS 8.1 and 8.5).

It's very helpful to have a fast CPU when you're creating a "read only compressed" Disk Copy image. In many cases, it's worth your time to copy a read-only image from a slower Mac to a faster one just to use the faster one to compress the image. Treat this like you would a JPEG picture file though: only run the compression when you're sure you aren't making any more changes. (Disk Copy compression is lossless, so the analogy is not quite correct here. But the compression can take long enough that the same sort of principle applies, if you value your time.)

You DO NOT need to install the ImageScan and other scripting additions (the developer tools I mentioned in my previous post) in your System Folder. You can put all of the developer tool scripts into the "Scripts" subfolder of the Disk Copy folder. They run fine from there, and don't require a restart. They can also be run from a server in this fashion.

Apple Software Restore preferences files can be tricky. The main things you can set:

- whether the disk will be reformatted or not (erase disk or restore in place)

- what format the disk will be formatted in (HFS, HFS Plus, or the same as the disk image uses)

You can also choose to just restore the System Folder and/or "everything else." Please note that many apps store critical files in the System Folder, so this is not a good way to create a quicker installer.

Apple Software Restore does not perform any logic; it doesn't check gestalts or version numbers or anything like that before it writes over files. So it's not really an installer replacement.

It can be run through an installer -- that's why it's part of the Apple Installer SDK. A good chuck of the software that gets installed on Macs from system CD's actually comes from Apple Software Restore disk images. It gets trickier here, but this is the kind of thing I'm working on now, using the "restore in place" options for ASR. Basically, though, Apple installers can call on the Apple Software Restore engine to restore images to a disk along with other software. (You almost never want to delete the target disk under these circumstances, so the preference settings you use are VERY important.)
Jeremy J. Reichman, aka "Jaharmi"
     
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Nov 22, 1999, 06:51 PM
 
Thanks a lot, everybody. You helped me a *lot*. It works now, all I didn't know I really needed, was the Disk Copy script "Scan Image for ASR".

Thanks a lot
Greg
     
   
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