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How to PXE Boot Veeam Recovery Media

KB ID: 4574
Product: Veeam Agent for Microsoft Windows
Published: 2024-05-15
Last Modified: 2024-05-15
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Article Applicability

This article details using PXE to network boot the Veeam Recovery Environment image. This process includes adding a boot image from an existing Veeam Recovery ISO to Windows Deployment Services.

Usually, each machine generates its own Veeam Recovery ISO to ensure the Recovery Environment contains all necessary drivers. While it is certainly possible to boot the Veeam Recovery ISO created by one machine with another, issues may occur if hardware drivers necessary to complete the restore are not present (e.g., server-grade network adapters or RAID controllers that Windows does not natively have drivers for).

In short, this article may work best for larger environments that deploy many workstations with the same hardware and servers with the same hardware to ensure maximum Recovery Environment compatibility with a minimal number of boot images.

Purpose

This article documents a method to use PXE to boot the Veeam Agent for Microsoft Windows Recovery Media over a network.

Solution

The details below are general advice regarding the configuration of Windows Deployment Services (WDS). If WDS is already configured and in use within the environment, the suggested configuration settings in this article should be reviewed with an Administrator to ensure they will not impact or conflict with the existing WDS usage.

Configuring WDS To Accept Connections

These steps will configure WDS to accept all connections and cause PXE booting to continue with minimal interaction.

  1. Open the Windows Deployment Service control panel. (wdsmgmt.msc)
  2. Expand the Servers node, right-click on the server, and select Properties in the context menu.
Properties
  1. On the PXE Response tab, select the option Respond to all client computers (known or unknown)
PXE Response
  1. On the Boot tab, select the options labeled Always continue the PXE boot
    This step is optional. If this option is not enabled, an additional key must be pressed to start the PXE boot process.
Boot
  1. Review the DHCP tab and select the appropriate options.
    The options selected will be based on the environment itself, therefore, we cannot advise which options should be selected.
DHCP
  1. Click OK to save the WDS server properties.

Add the Veeam Recovery Boot Image

  1. Open the Windows Deployment Service control panel. (wdsmgmt.msc)
  2. Expand the Servers node, then expand the server's node, and right-click on Boot Images
  3. In the context menu, select Add Boot Image...
Boot Image
  1. Select the boot.wim file from the sources folder on the Veeam Agent for Microsoft Windows Recovery Media (VEEAMRE).
Custom boot.wim

The boot.wim file on each Veeam Recovery Environment (VRE) ISO is customized to the machine that generated the file. Generally speaking, the VRE built for one machine can be used for another of the same OS version.

However, remember that the customized VRE may not include special drivers needed by machines other than the machine where the recovery environment was generated.

boot.wim
  1. On the next step of the Add Image Wizard, change the Image name and Image description to something identifiable.
name and description
  1. Continue through the remaining steps to add the boot image.

Network Boot Veeam Recovery Environment

On the machine that you want to network boot the Veeam Recovery Environment, configure the boot settings to use PXE boot.

Once the Veeam Recovery Environment is loaded, proceed with BareMetal restore as needed.

More Information

Consideration Notes

With the settings demonstrated in this KB, any user could, in theory, configure a machine on the same network as the WDS server to use PXE boot and gain access to the Tools included with the Veeam Recovery Environment, just as they could if they used the recovery media creation tool to create a bootable USB drive and booted from it.

VRE tools
If this is a concern, the approval setting could be enabled with the WDS server properties to make it so that each attempt to PXE boot using that WDS server must be explicitly approved.
Enable Approval
Await Approval
Approval
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