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Review Quiz


What is the minimum version of Mac OS X supported by a new Mac computer?


What two methods can be used to create a Mac OS X v10.6 system disk image suitable for deployment?


What are the benefits of each system image creation method?


What is the underlying format of Mac OS X’s preference management system?


What is a preference manifest?


What three methods can be used for creating a cloned system image?


Which files should be removed prior to creating a cloned system image?


What Mac OS X v10.6 utility is used to create network disk images? Where can this utility be found? What is the minimum version of Mac OS X supported by this utility?


What two sources can be used to create a network disk image?


What are the differences between NetBoot, NetInstall, and NetRestore images?


What is Automator? What is an Automator action? What is an Automator workflow?


How can Automator facilitate network disk image creation?


What is the primary SIU action required for creating network disk images? What other SIU action is almost always required?


Aside from SIU, how else can you access actions used to create network disk images?


What are the specific steps for building a modular system image using SIU?



The minimum version of Mac OS X supported by a new Mac computer is the version that it shipped with from the factory.


The two methods that can be used to create a Mac OS X v10.6 system disk image suitable for deployment are a cloned system image created by setting up a model computer and then copying the system to a disk image, and a modular system image built by applying multiple installation packages to a disk image.


Cloned system images offer an easier workflow for novice administrators and require less time to create the initial system image. Modular system images offer these benefits: system images are clean because they have never been booted; system images have no model-specific settings; Apple updates won’t interfere with customizations because updates are always applied prior to customizations; this method decreases your workload when creating multiple system images that require unique software and configurations; this method decreases your workload when updating system images; multiple and updated system images are perfectly consistent for similar items every single time; all configurations are fully documented and easily audited; this method requires simplified testing for updates and image modifications; this method is easily automated; and this method is easily integrated with system maintenance workflows and third-party deployment tools.


Mac OS X’s managed preferences system uses XML formatted key and value data stored in any source supported by Mac OS X directory services.


A preference manifest describes the contents of the customizable settings of an application or system process. Preference manifests can be imported into Workgroup Manager to provide a template for custom managed preferences settings.


Cloned system images can be created in the graphical interface using Disk Utility, in the command line using diskutil and asr, or by creating a NetRestore image with System Image Utility.


Before creating a cloned system image, you should remove user-specific files, computer-specific files, and cache files that could cause problems when deployed to other systems.


System Image Utility (SIU) in Mac OS X v10.6 is used to create Mac OS X v10.6 and Mac OS X Server v10.6 network disk images. The minimum version of Mac OS X supported is version 10.6. Mac OS X v10.5 is supported by SIU in Mac OS X v10.5.


Two sources for network disk images are the original Mac OS X installation media or nonbooted system volumes. Mounted disk images containing either are also supported, though SIU won’t treat them any differently.


NetBoot images start up to a full version of Mac OS X, NetInstall images start up to the Mac OS X system installer, and NetRestore images start up to an installer that will restore a system image.


Automator is an application that allows you to automate repetitive application tasks. Automator actions present small graphical interfaces that enable you to perform a very specific automated task in a specific application. By combining multiple Automator actions into an ordered list, you can build an Automator workflow that can be used to perform a repetitive task.


SIU includes Automator actions that can be used to create custom workflow-generated network disk images, which can be used to automate system deployment tasks.


The primary required SIU action for creating a workflow-generated network disk image is Create Image, which must be the last action in the SIU workflow. The Define Image Source action must be the first SIU action for nearly every type of SIU workflow except any workflow that starts with the Define NetRestore Source action.


The Automator application also has access to the SIU actions. These actions can be found in the System section of the Automator action library. Using Automator to build workflows allows you to integrate SIU actions with other Automator actions.


Within SIU you can build a modular image by creating an Automator workflow that includes at a minimum: the Define Image Source action that specifies the source as the Mac OS X installation media; the Add Packages and Post-Install Scripts action that has been configured to install additional items; and finally the Create Image action that has been configured to create a NetRestore image.

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Last Update: November 17, 2020