Forum Thread

Does software like this exist? Autmated testing of PC hardware (in preboot environment)

Jabbit 11,038 1,387 February 22, 2016 at 09:42 AM
Say I wanted to build 100 PCs and make sure they are all the same - same BIOS, same HDD w/ same firmware, etc... basically tell the software to look for xyz hardware and report back. If the firmware is wrong, load correct firmware, etc. Also run a benchmark to make sure everything is performing well.

Is there commercial software that does this? Reps for help.

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#2
I can't think of an all in one package for this. One thought is to simply build all of them from one image which would force all of them to be the same.

I know of some products like TestComplete that can do some amazing automated testing though some system level macros, but I don't think it will handle the reloading if needed.
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#3
Check out Acronis Snap Deploy. There are a few programs like this that can image hard drives, I have used Acronis and it works well. I have also used FOG imaging server which worked well but is open source and doesn't come with all the features.

I have not tried updating bios information through this and I am not sure if it is possible, If someone else knows good programs I am interested too Smilie

sorry I misunderstood the original question. nvm my response
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Last edited by bcotran February 22, 2016 at 12:29 PM
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#4
I'd be interested in doing this from some sort of bootable environment, NOT from a pre-loaded Windows OS.
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#5
You might look at System Information Windows [gtopala.com] [SIW]

The last time I used it I was not able to automatically compare various PC's but that may be available in the paid version Confused
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#6
Windows Hardware Lab Kit might do some of what your asking - if each PC is running Windows 10 (or HCK for Windows 8.1 & before) - LINK [microsoft.com]
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#7
Quote from Jabbit View Post :
Say I wanted to build 100 PCs and make sure they are all the same - same BIOS, same HDD w/ same firmware, etc... basically tell the software to look for xyz hardware and report back. If the firmware is wrong, load correct firmware, etc. Also run a benchmark to make sure everything is performing well.

Is there commercial software that does this? Reps for help.

Has to be as there are companies that exist to test and validate pc builds at the commercial level. See:

http://www.eurosoft-uk.com/products/pc-builder/
http://pc-diagnostics.com/

for example. There are others as well.
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#8
sccm 2012 will deploy software update bios and report back on hardware, you could also include a task to run test software after imaging.

Not cheap or easy to use

Install with SCCM update firmware then run passmark

http://www.passmark.com/products/bit.htm
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#9
Some firmware could be problematic to deploy remotely, like hdd updates.

There are lots of hardware and software inventory type programs. They may not directly handle the updates, but it isn't too hard to build a pretty complete database. Things along the lines of belarc, but there are plenty of other options.
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#10
it's possible. But be warned beaucse these softwares are not easy to use
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#11
Quote from YanksIn2009 View Post :
Has to be as there are companies that exist to test and validate pc builds at the commercial level. See:

http://www.eurosoft-uk.com/products/pc-builder/
http://pc-diagnostics.com/

for example. There are others as well.
That first one looks like something I had in mind, wish I could download a trial though. Repped everyone for the help.
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#12
Top PC manufacturers usually have tools for this. I purchase Dell workstations/servers and they can report and edit BIOS/hardware. They have tools to set the BIOS to specifications and you can easily report on remote computers in many different ways, including with powershell scripts. You can also install OpenManage Essentials to monitor the machines with the same information in a GUI web-based format.

I didn't see any mention of brand or what kind of shop you have but that is my experience and you don't need any third party software to manage your workstations.
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#13
https://www.manageengine.com/mobile/service-desk/

There's an asset management module, I know it gives a lot of info, can't tell you much else. I don't personally use the asset management, only the ticketing and knowledge base.
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#14
I updated the title, looking to do this WITHOUT an OS on the computer, so in a preboot environment. I know that narrows it down even more. Basically a bootable application that would meet my requirements of pinging hardware and reporting back what is inside, with a "fail" state being reported if a component is incorrect.
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#15
Quote from Jabbit View Post :
I updated the title, looking to do this WITHOUT an OS on the computer, so in a preboot environment. I know that narrows it down even more. Basically a bootable application that would meet my requirements of pinging hardware and reporting back what is inside, with a "fail" state being reported if a component is incorrect.
Unless the computer has a management card that hosts this information, then your request will not work.

You will need to load software onto the computer in order to interpret and send the data. It may be a live disk or pxe boot image, but you will require software running on the computer to access the data.

You aren't really addressing the reason for this request. You are wanting to "100 PCs and make sure they are all the same". Is there a reason you cannot just create a system image, and then utilize manufacturer software to achieve your goals? Maybe you setup a PXE server and utilize a Linux environment to generate a script about each machine that boots into the network.

What's so special about your hardware resources that you need to do this? What PC vendor are you using? Are you wanting inventory just for inventory's sake?

Please be more clear so we may be of better assistance.
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