C-Command Software Forum

Will DropDMG do this?

I manage many public computing labs at Texas Tech University. We have imaging down to a fine art on the PC. We have 1 MAC lab with Imac G5’s running 10.4.8. I have never imaged this lab. By the way, when I use the term “Image” I mean to have a server with a complete image of a computer hard drive that is already set up with all the latest programs and updates. So, I can transfer this image to a computer with a blank hard drive and when the image transfer is done, the new computer has an OS with all of our programs already installed, updated and ready to be used.

My question is will DropDMG be able to create an image of a MAC that is all updated and ready to go and allow me to put that image on a laptop and travel around to all of our MAC’s, hook them together via firewire, then transfer the new image and be done with it?

Yes, you can do this with DropDMG. Boot from your laptop and attach your source Mac via FireWire target disk mode. Set the .dmg format that you want in DropDMG and then drag the source hard disk onto DropDMG to create the image file. Then use either Disk Utility or the “asr” command-line tool to scan the image for restore. To transfer the image to another computer, connect it to your laptop via FireWire and then use Disk Utility or “asr” to restore the image onto the blank hard drive.

It won’t work for me for some reason. It won’t even copy the image onto the laptop. It tries for about 30 minutes then give me an error stating "File ‘/Users/MacImage/Desktop/Macintosh HD_temp.dmg’ doesn’t exist for “Macintosh HD”.

Macintosh HD is the hard drive I am trying to copy. MacImage is the username of the laptop.

I’m not sure why you would be getting that error. Please click this link to turn debug mode on. Re-launch DropDMG and then make your image. When you get to the error, please open the Console application, copy all the messages from DropDMG, and send them to me via e-mail. Then turn debug mode off.

The problem ended up being that there wasn’t enough free space on the destination disk. I’m not sure why the underlying Apple tools didn’t report this back to DropDMG so that it could display a better error message.

DropDMG 3.0 can create device images of hard drives and automatically optimize them for restoring (e.g. in a lab).