SmartDeploy Terminology

This glossary contains a list of terms and definitions used in SmartDeploy's documentation and by our Support Team. If you have any questions about the precise meaning of a term, you can refer to this guide. If you have any questions, feel free to open a support ticket.

Term Category Definition
Build Wizard SmartDeploy SmartDeploy wizard that will create a blank virtual hard disk file and a set of configuration files for a virtual machine (VM), which you can then power on within the selected virtualization client and proceed with installing the OS and configuring the VM as a Reference VM. This wizard is optional. You can simply use the virtualization software to create the Reference VM. Some platforms (VMWare ESX and Microsoft Hyper-V) do not allow VMs to be created externally in this manner, and VMs on these platforms must be created manually. 
Capture Wizard SmartDeploy SmartDeploy wizard that will capture an image of the current file state of a Reference VM, either as a standard image (.wim file) or a differencing image (.dwm file). Available from the SmartDeploy console, or via the SmartPE as a warm capture. The resulting image will be identical regardless of which version of Capture Wizard is used. 
Media Wizard SmartDeploy SmartDeploy wizard that is used to create SmartDeploy media, in a variety of available formats, containing the SmartPE. 
Deploy Wizard SmartDeploy The wizard that is executed in the SmartPE to deploy an image to an endpoint. This wizard can be unautomated (no answer file, user enters settings manually per deployment), attended (settings specified with an answer file, user must click through and can make changes per deployment), partially attended (same as attended, but with certain pages skipped), or unattended (all settings specified in answer file, Deploy Wizard is not shown, and user cannot make changes per deployment). 
Platform Pack (PPK) Packs A compressed, single-instance-stored package containing device drivers and (optionally) applications to be installed on a specific hardware model and OS version at deployment time, as well as appropriate WMI filters to ensure that the pack can only be executed if the make/model/OS are an exact match. 
Application Pack (SPK) Packs A compressed, single-instance-stored package containing files and commands that can be executed upon endpoints managed by using the SmartDeploy Client. Application Packs can be used to install software as well as perform a variety of other tasks, including installing and configuring Office 365, copying a file, rebooting the computer, running a command-line task, running an MSI package, setting a registry value, mapping a network drive, and downloading a file from a URL. Application Packs can also be configured with filters so that they will only be executed under certain conditions, e.g., an earlier version of an application is installed, triggering an installation of the latest version. Application Packs can be deployed as a part of deployment, or from Computer Management. 
Warm capture Images The process of capturing a Reference VM with the virtual machine switched on, from a SmartPE on that VM itself. To perform this task, boot the Reference VM to SmartDeploy media (easiest is boot media created as a DVD image, saved as an ISO file), and click Capture an image. Map a network drive to an external location (the host computer's hard drive is best), and save the .wim to that location. This method is intended to bypass interference from the host environment that may be preventing capture using Capture Wizard. The resulting .wim file will be identical to one captured using Capture Wizard. 
Image Images The captured OS and file state of a reference machine, stored in a .wim file. "Imaging" a computer refers to the act of deploying a captured image to that computer. 
WIM (.wim) Images A container file used to store one or more operating system images. If you capture an image using SmartDeploy Capture Wizard and select Standard Image, a .wim file will be created. Capture Wizard also has the capability to append an image to an existing .wim file. The .wim files utilize single-instance storage, meaning that only a single copy of any binary-identical files is included. This means that a .wim file is often smaller than the hard disk that it was captured or created from. The SmartPE, like any other WindowsPE boot environment, uses a .wim file for boot purposes. WDS boot media is also stored as a .wim file. 
Differencing WIM (.dwm) Images A differencing WIM (.dwm) is a child WIM file that is created by SmartDeploy Capture Wizard, which only contains any files that have changed since a previous .wim file was captured from the same reference computer. Differencing WIMs are intended to allow for easier transfer of updates to an image to branch offices with limited internet connectivity, allowing you to transfer a much smaller file that only contains the changes that were made since the original .wim was captured and transferred. In order to deploy a .dwm, you must have the original .wim that was captured from an earlier version of the same reference computer, as well as the most recent .dwm file only (you do not need to retain earlier .dwm files unless you wish to do so). If you capture a new standard image (.wim) and wish to deploy that, all previously created child .dwm files will no longer be usable. Differencing images are not intended to allow you to update multiple versions of the same image (e.g., with different software loads) independently and are not recommended for this purpose.
Split-WIM (.swm) Images Split-WIM (.swm) files are created by Media Wizard, when you try to create offline deployment media in the default FAT32 format for use with UEFI target devices. Because the FAT32 file format has an architectural limitation that prevents any individual file from being larger than 4 GB, most captured OS images cannot be copied directly to your USB media without first being split into smaller pieces. This process occurs automatically, and all .swm parts except for the first one will be marked with the Hidden file attribute, so that they will not appear in the browse window when you select your image in SmartPE. You can simply select the first .swm piece for the image, and SmartPE will automatically find the rest of the .swm files in the same folder. 
Answer file Answer Files A text file (often in XML format) containing instructions to automate the behavior of a process or wizard. A SmartDeploy answer file is created with Answer File Wizard and can be optionally included in the creation of any SmartDeploy media. SmartDeploy answer files contain instructions for Deploy Wizard, the wizard that appears in SmartPE and that contains all settings for a deployment that is about to occur. A SmartDeploy answer file is stored in the root directory of any SmartDeploy media as a file, SmartDeploy.xml. SmartDeploy answer files are unattended by default. They can also be created as attended. Attended answer files can optionally skip specific pages of Deploy Wizard. This term may also refer to the Sysprep Unattend.xml file, which is used to automate Windows Sysprep.
Unattended Answer Files An unattended SmartDeploy answer file will cause SmartPE to initiate a countdown (30 seconds by default), followed by an automatic launch of Deploy Wizard, which will proceed with deployment according to the settings specified in the answer file, with no option to change settings per deployment. 
Attended Answer Files An attended SmartDeploy answer file contains all the settings that will appear in Deploy Wizard. When users boot to SmartPE, they must click Deploy an image (Deploy Wizard will not launch automatically), and then they must click through Deploy Wizard, which will be prepopulated with all settings that were specified in the answer file. Attended answer files can skip specific Deploy Wizard pages, if the user only wishes to change a small number of specific settings at deployment time (e.g., set a specific computer name that cannot be formulaically defined). 
SmartDeploy media Media Any of the available packages that can be created with Media Wizard, which include SmartPE (built over Windows PE 10.0), including a boot.wim file customized with any WindowsPE drivers included in the Platform Packs that you select, to ensure full functionality in Windows PE. Available SmartDeploy media types include boot media, offline deployment media, WDS boot media, and a Deployment Package.
Boot media Media SmartDeploy media, in the form of a USB or DVD (.iso) package, which contains SmartPE, along with any WindowsPE 10.0 drivers included in the Platform Packs that you select, and (optionally) an answer file pointing to a network location where your image and Platform Packs are located. Allows you to perform network-based deployment initiated from the endpoint.  
WDS boot media Media SmartDeploy media, in the form of a Windows Deployment Services (WDS) boot .wim, which contains SmartPE, along with any WindowsPE 10.0 drivers included in the Platform Packs that you select, and (optionally) an answer file pointing to a network location where your image and Platform Packs are located. Once this is added to boot images in the WDS console, SmartPE will appear as an available boot image in the WDS boot menu, available via PXE boot. Allows you to perform network-based deployment initiated from the endpoint via PXE boot, with or without credentials for WDS multicasting. 
Offline deployment media Media SmartDeploy media, in the form of a USB or DVD (.iso) package, which contains your captured image and Platform Packs, SmartPE, along with any WindowsPE 10.0 drivers included in the Platform Packs that you select, and (optionally) an answer file pointing to the location on the USB stick ([USB-root]:\z by default) where your image and Platform Packs are located. Allows you to perform offline deployments with no network connectivity required (with the exception of SmartDeploy trial users, which, by default, require an internet connection in SmartPE). 
Deployment Package Media SmartDeploy media, in the form of a bootable .wim file, which contains SmartPE, along with any WindowsPE 10.0 drivers included in the Platform Packs that you select, and an unattended answer file pointing to a network location where your image and Platform Packs are located. Can be pushed to perform console-initiated ("push") deployments to one or more target endpoints that have the SmartDeploy Client installed and which appear in the Computer Management view of the SmartDeploy Console. Unattended deployments only, with the exception of an optional check box to allow the user to defer deployment. 
OS media Windows Operating system installation media provided by an official Microsoft source, such as the Volume License Servicing Center or the Media Creation Tool. OEM media, or any media which has been customized/branded for specific hardware, is not recommended for use with SmartDeploy.
Sysprep Windows The Windows System Preparation Tool, known as Sysprep, is run automatically by SmartDeploy at deployment time on the target computer. It performs a variety of tasks, including Generalize (which removes unique identifiers and content that were specific to the Reference VM that the image was captured from) and Specialize (which applies certain settings that you may have specified as a part of deployment, such as a Computer Name or Windows Product Key). It is not necessary or recommended to run Sysprep on your Reference VM prior to capture.
Group Policy Windows A feature on both the local Windows client environment and Active Directory environments that allows certain policies to be applied to user and computer accounts within an environment. Group Policy Objects (GPOs) can be used for a wide variety of purposes, including creating a common look and feel for your endpoints, creating and enforcing password and security policies, and pushing out software installations, including the SmartDeploy Client. 
Virtual machine (VM) Virtualization An emulation of a computer system that runs within a virtualization client, such as VMWare, Oracle VM VirtualBox, Microsoft Hyper-V, and others. A virtual machine uses a subset of the processor and memory resources allocated to it from its physical host machine. 
Reference VM Virtualization The specific VM that you are using as a reference for the OS and software configuration that you wish to deploy to all of the computers in your organization's environment. Should be created as a new, blank VM, with Windows installed by using OS media that contains the specific major Windows version/feature update (e.g., Windows 10 Version 1909) that you wish to deploy. 
SmartPE SmartDeploy A Windows Preinstallation Environment (WindowsPE) containing the SmartDeploy software, used to deploy an image to a target device. 
Deployment/reimaging SmartDeploy The action of applying an OS image to a target device. The target hard drive is wiped and a new operating system is applied. Depending on the settings you specify, files and user data may be retained (or backed up and restored) through deployment, but this will not occur by default. 
Collect Logs SmartDeploy A menu option in SmartPE that will retrieve all logs from the current WindowsPE session, as well as any logs that it can retrieve from the target computer's hard drive, from several specific file paths that contain records of deployment, Sysprep, device installation, etc. If you encounter an error message/state while still in SmartPE (before the image finishes applying), then you must retrieve the logs while in the same SmartPE session, as WindowsPE logs do not survive a reboot. If you encountered an error message/state after the image was applied and the computer rebooted during a previous deployment, you may click Collect Logs at any time, but you must make sure not to allow another deployment to start or the logs from the previous deployment (on the hard drive) will cease to exist when the disk is provisioned. 
Cloud Broker SmartDeploy An optional feature in the SmartDeploy Client that allows you to perform a console-initiated cloud deployment to any endpoint with a working internet connection, whether or not they are on your organization's network. Cloud deployments using Cloud Broker can be initiated from the Computer Management view of the SmartDeploy Console.
Cloud deployment SmartDeploy Deployment of an image that is stored on your organization's cloud storage account, through one of the supported cloud storage vendors, which currently include Google Drive, OneDrive, OneDrive for Business, Dropbox, and Box. Cloud deployments can be initiated by booting the endpoint to any type of SmartDeploy media containing a cloud answer file, or using the Cloud Broker. 
Console host SmartDeploy The computer where your SmartDeploy Console is installed. This can be a physical or virtual computer, although using a virtual machine does have certain limitations that may be inherent to the virtual environment, such as running nested virtualization or creating USB media. 
Computer Management Computer Management A view in the SmartDeploy Console that allows you to view the current status and perform operations on computers on which you've installed the SmartDeploy Client and which currently have connectivity to the Console Host.
Update Drivers Computer Management An operation in Computer Management that instructs one or more endpoints to compare their currently installed driver versions to the versions of the same drivers contained in the Platform Pack on the Console Host and install the updated driver versions and any associated applications/firmware updates as needed. May be optionally user-deferred, and may require a reboot. 
Capture User State Computer Management Back up user data from an endpoint using the User State Migration Tool (USMT). May be used (along with Deploy User State) to transfer user data from one computer to another. 
Deploy User State Computer Management Restore user data to an endpoint using the User State Migration Tool (USMT). May be used (along with Capture User State) to transfer user data from one computer to another. 
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