Use the procedures in this topic to manage the boot images in your System Center 2012 Configuration Manager environment. These images are used to boot the destination computer when you deploy an operating system.

Use the following sections to manage boot images:

How to Add Boot Images

Boot images in Configuration Manager with no service pack use Windows PE based on Windows 7 and are created by using Windows Automated Installation Kit (Windows AIK). Starting in Configuration Manager SP1, boot images use Windows PE based on Windows 8 and are created by using the Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit (Windows ADK). An error occurs when you try to add a boot image that was not created by using the appropriate tools. For example, in Configuration Manager SP1 you will encounter an error if you try to add an image that was created by using Windows AIK. Also, if you deploy a task sequence that uses boot images created by using Windows ADK to a site that continues to run Configuration Manager with no service pack, the task sequence will fail. For more information about boot images in a Configuration Manager hierarchy with sites that run both Configuration Manager SP1 and Configuration Manager with no service pack, see Planning for Operating System Deployment Interoperability

To add a boot image, you must know the path to where the boot image file (.WIM file) is located. If the WIM file contains multiple boot images, you can select the boot image that you want to add from the WIM file.

Use the following procedure to add a boot image.

To add a boot image

How to Specify where Boot Images are Distributed

To distribute the boot image you must specify where the Configuration Manager client will access the boot image. You can specify single distribution points, distribution point groups, or collections that are associated with distribution point groups. For more information about distributing content in Configuration Manager, see Distribute Content on Distribution Points.

Use the following procedure to specify where the boot image is distributed.

To specify where the boot image is distributed

How to Modify a Boot Image

You can modify the settings of the boot images that are listed under the Boot Image node. This includes the boot images that you create and the default boot images that are provided by Configuration Manager. These settings are configured by using the Properties page of the boot image object.

Many of the boot image settings are self-explanatory, such as the Name, Version, and Comment settings on the General tab of the Properties page. Use the following procedure to change the properties of a boot image.

To modify the properties of a boot image

Configure Multiple Languages for Boot Image Deployment

For Configuration Manager SP1 only:

In Configuration Manager with no service pack, while in Windows PE, text displayed by the task sequence is always in the language of Windows PE. To support multiple languages, you must create and deploy multiple boot images.

Starting in Configuration Manager SP1, boot images are language neutral. This allows you to use one boot image that will display the task sequence text in multiple languages, while in Windows PE, if you include the appropriate language support from the Windows PE Optional Components and set the appropriate task sequence variable to indicate which language can be displayed. The language of the operating system that you deploy is independent from the language that is displayed when in Windows PE, regardless of the Configuration Manager version. The language that is displayed to the user is determined as follows:

  • When a user runs the task sequence from an existing operating system, Configuration Manager automatically uses the language configured for the user. When the task sequence automatically runs as the result of a mandatory deployment deadline, Configuration Manager uses the language of the operating system.

  • For operating system deployments that use PXE or media, you can set the language ID value in the SMSTSLanguageFolder variable as part of a prestart command. When the computer boots to Windows PE, messages are displayed in the language that you specified in the variable. If there is an error accessing the language resource file in the specified folder or you do not set the variable, messages are displayed in the Windows PE language.

    When the media is protected with a password, the text that prompts the user for the password is always displayed in the Windows PE language.

Use the following procedure to set the Windows PE language for PXE or media-initiated operating system deployments.

To set the Windows PE language for a PXE or media-initiated operating system deployment

Additional Actions to Manage Boot Images

In addition to adding boot images and specifying where they can be distributed, you can perform the actions on the boot images listed in the Boot Image list. These actions include the following:

Action Description


Removes the image from the Boot Image node and also removes the image from the associated distribution points.

Update Distribution Points

Starts the Update Distribution Points Wizard. This action updates the boot image on the distribution points where it has been distributed. The package version is incremented and the distribution points are updated with only the files that have changed in the package.

Create Prestaged Content File

Starts the Create Prestaged Content File Wizard. For information about how to create a prestaged content file, see the Prestage Content on a Distribution Point section of the Operations and Maintenance for Content Management in Configuration Manager topic.

Manage Access Accounts

Opens the Manage Access Accounts dialog box where you can add an access account to a boot image, edit the access rights for an account, or remove an access account from a boot image.

For more information about the Package Access Account, see Technical Reference for Accounts Used in Configuration Manager.


Moves the boot image to another folder.

Customizing Boot Images by Using the Windows Automated Installation Kit (Windows AIK)

This section applies to Configuration Manager with no service pack only.

Use the following procedure to create a new source boot image for 32-bit and 64-bit computers that can be imported to Configuration Manager:

If the boot image that you import is not a valid boot image, the SMS Provider rejects it.

To add a custom boot image for 32-bit or 64-bit computers to Configuration Manager

See Also