Editing a Task Sequence
In MDT 2010, the task sequence is a list of tasks to run during deployment. However, it's not a linear list of tasks like a batch script. The task sequence is organized into groups and specifies conditions, or filters, that can prevent tasks and entire groups from running in certain situations.
MDT 2010 uses a Task Sequencer to run the task sequence. The Task Sequencer runs the task sequence from top to bottom in the order specified. Each task in the sequence is a step, and steps can be organized into groups and subgroups. When you create a task sequence in Deployment Workbench, you can choose a task sequence template. A key feature of the task sequence is that it stores state data, or variables, on the destination computer. These variables persist, even across reboots. The Task Sequencer can then use these variables to test conditions and possibly filter tasks or groups. The Task Sequencer also can restart the computer and gracefully continue the task sequence where it left off. These are important characteristics when driving a deployment process from beginning to end.
Task sequences contain the following types of items:
- Steps Steps are commands that the Task Sequencer runs during the sequence, such as partitioning the disk, capturing user state, and installing the operating system. Within a task sequence, steps do the actual work. In the task sequence templates provided by MDT 2010, most steps are commands that run scripts.
- Groups The task sequence steps can be organized into groups, which are folders that can contain subgroups and steps. Groups can be nested as necessary. For example, the default task sequence puts steps in groups by phase and deployment type.
You can filter both steps and groups, including the groups and steps that they contain, based on conditions that you specify. Groups are especially useful for filtering because you can run an entire collection of steps based on a condition, such as the deployment phase or type of deployment.
To edit a task sequence, perform the following steps:
- In the Deployment Workbench console tree, click Task Sequences (or a subfolder) in your deployment share.
- In the details pane, right-click the task sequence you want to edit and then click Properties.
- Click the Task Sequence tab, edit the task sequence as described in Table below, and then click OK. For more information about settings on the Properties and Options tabs, see the sections titled "Configuring Group and Task Properties" and "Configuring the Options Tab" later in this tutorial.
Editing a Task Sequence
|To||Use These Steps|
|Add a group||In the task sequence, select the item beneath which you want to create a new group, click Add, and then click New Group. Deployment Workbench creates and selects a new group called New Group|
|Add a step||In the task sequence, select the item beneath which you want
to create a new step and click Add. Then choose the type of
step that you want to create by clicking General and then
choosing one of the following (MDT 2010 supports more
steps than those listed here, but they are already in the task
sequence or are primarily for server deployment):
|Add a reboot||In the task sequence, select the item beneath which you want to add a reboot, click Add, click General, and then click Restart Computer. Deployment Workbench creates and selects a new task that restarts the destination computer.|
|Add an application||In the task sequence, select the item beneath which you want to add an application installation, click Add, click General, and then click Install Application. Then select the Install Application step you just added, and on the Properties tab, click Install A Single Application. Choose the application you want to install from the Application To Install list.|
Important If you install antivirus software as part of the task sequence, be sure to carefully test how the antivirus software interacts with the deployment process before moving to a production environment. Antivirus software can prevent MDT 2010 from successfully deploying Windows 7 and applications. If necessary, you can always disable the antivirus software and then re-enable it at the end of the task sequence.
To edit an item in a task sequence, select the item you want to work with and then edit the settings in the right pane.
Note MDT 2010 includes a variety of special steps, such as the Enable BitLocker task or Install Operating System step, that you can configure. You change settings for these steps by selecting the step in the left pane and then configuring the step on the Properties tab. In general, the most interesting steps to configure are Validate (under Validation and under Preinstall\New Computer Only), Format and Partition Disk (under Preinstall\New Computer Only), Install Operating System (under Install), Apply Network Settings (under State Restore), and Enable BitLocker (under State Restore).
To remove an item in a task sequence, select the item you want to work with and then click Remove. If a group is removed, Deployment Workbench removes the group and everything it contains, including subgroups and tasks.
To reorder an item in a task sequence, select the item you want to work with and then click Up or Down to change its position within the task sequence. During deployment, the Windows Deployment Wizard runs the tasks from top to bottom in the order specified.
In this tutorial:
- Developing Disk Images
- Getting Started Developing Disk Images
- Prerequisite Skills and Lab Requirements
- Installation Media
- Capturing Images Using Microsoft Deployment Toolkit
- Creating and Configuring a Deployment Share
- Adding Operating Systems
- Adding Applications
- Specifying Application Dependencies
- Adding Packages
- Creating Task Sequences
- Editing a Task Sequence
- Configuring Group and Task Properties
- Configuring the Options Tab
- Task Sequence Variables
- Operating System Versions
- Updating the Deployment Share
- Capturing a Disk Image for LTI
- Preparing Images Manually
- Customizing Microsoft Deployment Toolkit