MCC ETS Laptop Imaging Procedure
January 29, 2023


This document explains how to image a Mission College student laptop. There is information about how to set up fixtures to runthe imaging, step-by-step instructions for imaging, and a guide to troubleshooting common problems.


The components needed to image a system are:

- the computers that are to be imaged
- Sabrent docking station
- Disk drive with the source image
- Network switch
- Patch cables

The computers to be imaged must have power supplies and be connected to wall power. A USB mouse must be connected to each computer to be imaged. Relying on the track-pad on a laptop for mouse-clicks will not work.


The following steps explain how to set up and connect computers to be imaged, a Norton Ghost server, a network switch, and a docking station.

Power up the Netgear 24-port JGS524 Gigabit Ethernet switch.

Power up the Windows Server 2012 Norton Ghost server. This is a Dell laptop computer sitting on top of the Netgear 24 port JGS524 Gigabit switch.

Connect the Ghost server via network patch cable to the Netgear switch.

Insert the correct imaging disk into the Source port of the Sabrent EC-HDD2 SATA docking station.

Connect the Sabrent docking station to the Ghost server via USB A/B cable. Make sure the USB cable is properly connected and seated at both ends.

Power up the Sabrent docking station. This is done with a push button on one side of the unit. There is a large indicator light directly above the push button that illuminates when the docking station is powered. Make sure the indicator light is on.

Connect all computers that are to be imaged to the Netgear JGS524 switch via network patch cables. Make sure each patch cable is properly seated and connected at both ends. There are indicator lights on the switch ports that illuminate when a cable connection is in effect.

Connect all computers that are to be imaged to wall power.

Connect a USB mouse to each computer that is to be imaged. Do not rely on the track pad of a laptop for operations that require using a mouse or mouse click.

Insert an Acronis 2019 USB thumb drive into the USB port of each computer to be imaged. It is possible to simultaneously image as many computers as there are available network ports on the Netgear JGS524 switch.

Power up each computer that is to be imaged by pressing the ON button on the keyboard.

When power is applied to the laptop the power switch will illuminate. Watch the computer screen. Within three seconds the computer screen will blink. When the computer screen blinks press the F12 key for one second. A message will appear in the upper right corner of the screen: “Preparing one-time boot menu…”, and then a “One-Time Boot Settings” menu screen will appear.

Look to the lower left corner of the “One-Time Boot Settings” screen, under the heading “UEFI Boot Devices”, for an entry that says something like “UEFI USB DISK”. This is the entry for the USB thumb drive that you previously inserted. The exact text that will appear varies with the make and model of the USB drive being used. It is generally the last entry in the list of UEFI Boot Devices and may read as one of the following:

- UEFI General Udisk
- UEFI USB Device
- UEFI Generic Mass Storage 5A20430C
- UEFI Lexar Media JD Lightning 3300000001928000000187

Use a mouse to click on the USB boot device. A prompt is posted with the title “Admin Unlock” requesting entry of the BIOS password. Enter the BIOS password and then click the OK box to the right. The computer will re-boot.

After about 90 seconds a panel titled “Acronis True Image 2020” is presented. Expand the panel to fill the entire computer screen and note the tool bar headings of Backup, Recovery, Tools & Utilities, Network Options, and Manage Acronis Secure Zone. Also note the selection options along the left side of the panel, which are Home, Backup, Recovery, Log, and Tools & Utilities.

Click the Network Options toolbar and verify the following information:

- Network adapter: Ethernet
- Auto configuration is checked
- IP address: where xxx is a three digit number between 002 and 254 inclusive
- Subnet mask:
- Default gateways:
- DNS Servers:

If the above named fields are empty or show something different there is likely a failed network connection somewhere in the setup. To correct the problem make sure all network patch cables are seated, the Ghost server is up and running, the Sabrent docking station is powered and connected, and the image source disk is in the correct slot of the Sabrent docking station and it is seated correctly. Once the fault has been found and corrected it may be necessary to restart the computer that is to be imaged.

If the network settings are in order then it is OK to proceed with imaging. Click the OK button on the Network Options panel and click the Recovery option on the to the left. The Disk Recovery panel is displayed.

From the Disk Recovery panel click Browse for Backup. A Browse for Location panel is displayed.

In the File Name entry area on the Browse for Location panel enter \\gss-svr\ and hit enter. There may be a pause of up to fifteen seconds. Two message boxes are posted, first prompting for a user name and password, and second stating “\\gss-svr is not accessible...”. Click OK on the \\gss-svr\ is not accessible message.

In the panel prompting for a user name and password enter the administrator user name and password and click the OK button. A “Connected successfully” message is posted. Click OK. A Browse for Location panel is displayed.

On the Browse for Location panel double-click E(\\gss-svr\) and then double-click the computer model number corresponding to the computer being imaged. Typically, this is a Dell 3420. Next, double-click SYSPREP > MyBackup.tibx > OK

The Acronis True Image 2020 panel is redisplayed. Under “Images” in the middle of this panel is an entry for MyBackup followed by a date and time. Right-click this entry and select Recover from the choices that are displayed. This triggers the start of a Recovery Wizard.

The first panel in the Recovery Wizard prompts for recovery method. Select the radio button corresponding to “Recover whole disks and partitions” and click Next.

The next panel in the Recovery Wizard prompts for “Recover your system to a previous point in time”. On the calendar that is displayed look for a date highlighted in a green box. It may be necessary to click backwards to a prior month. Click the date highlighted in the green box, and then click the time value shown in the box labeled Time. After highlighting the time value click Next.

The next panel in the Recovery Wizard prompts to “Select the items to recover”. Click the check box to the left of “Disk 1” and click Next > Next > Proceed. An Operation Progress message box is presented. During this dialog there may be a warning posted indicating the destination hard drive contains partitions that may contain useful data. Click OK if such a prompt is presented.

In the Operation Progress message box click the check box for “Restart the computer when operation is completed”. Note this message box also posts a message for the amount of time left.

The imaging process will run for up to twenty minutes. The computer will restart and boot into a Windows system. The system is now ready for QC.

Troubleshooting and common problems

Typical problems are when a dialog does not respond to a mouse click. This is commonly caused by either a failed network connection, the Sabrent docking station is not powered, or the docking station is not connected to the Ghost server. Fixing these problems typically consists of making sure devices are powered up and connected properly, and all interface cables are firmly inserted and seated. It is common for a network patch cable to fall out of a port on the switch.

Make sure the Sabrent unit is powered on. There is an indicator light above the on-off button that is illuminated when the unit is powered.

Make sure the Windows 2000 2012 / Norton Ghost server has a good network connection to the Netgear switch. Check to make sure the network patch cable is properly seated in the back of the laptop and in the switch port.

After inspecting and correcting connection issues it will likely be necessary to restart the computer(s) that are to be imaged. If a problem exists with one computer try initiating the imaging process on a different computer.