Prestage Client Computers

Applies To: Windows Server 2008

Prestaging client computers enables you to assign computers to a specific Windows Deployment Services server. When used with the Respond only to known client computers policy (on the PXE Response Settings tab), prestaging also enables you to control which computers Windows Deployment Services will deploy an image to. Windows Deployment Services provides automated and manual methods to prestage client computers. For the automated method see Create Pending Devices.

To prestage client computers by using the Windows interface

  1. To open Active Directory Users and Computers, click Start, click Run, type dsa.msc, and then click OK.

  2. In the console tree, right-click the organizational unit that will contain the new client computer.

  3. Click New, and then click Computer.

  4. Type the client computer name, click Next, and then click This is a managed computer.

  5. In the text box, type the client computer's MAC address or globally unique identifier (GUID), and then click Next.


If you specify a MAC address, you must precede it with twenty zeros (0).

  1. Click one of the following options to specify which server or servers will support this client computer:

    • Any available remote installation server

    • The following remote installation server

  2. Click Next, and then click Finish.

To prestage client computers by using a command line

  1. Click Start, right-click Command Prompt, and then click Run as administrator.

  2. Type the following where <devicename> is the name, <GUIDorMACAddress> is the identifier of the new computer, and <options> are any optional settings.

    WDSUTIL /add-device /device:<devicename> /ID:<GUIDorMACAddress> /options


If you use a MAC address with the /ID option, you must precede it with twenty zeros (0).

Additional considerations

  • When a computer is prestaged into a domain with multiple domain controllers, the replication delay of the client computer account information can cause a client computer to be serviced by another Windows Deployment Services server.

Additional references