I had an interesting week this past week, doing my first production installation of System Center 2012 Configuration Manager in a production environment, with the focus of the project being on operating system and software deployment. On Friday I had an interesting issue start to flare up while testing on some VMs. The task sequence was failing during the installation of the operating system image.
The key log to analyse during a task sequence execution is SMSTS.LOG which can be found in \Windows\Temp\SMSTS on the X drive. You can get access to this log by enabling the command prompt for diagnostics in your boot image (remember to redistribute to your distribution points) and pressing F8 while the boot image is running. In here I found:
Error 0x800705AA: Insufficient system resources
Damn! I had to think for a few moments about this one. Then it hit me. I develop my reference image using a VM (snapshot right before the sysprep so I can rollback [apply snapshot], tweak and recapture) and I test on VMs before moving onto driver testing on reference hardware. How were the VMs configured? Dynamic memory with 512 MB startup memory. The boot image doesn’t appear to have integration components for DM so the 512 MB never burst up to the potential maximum memory of 4096 MB. The boot image requires a minimum of 512 MB. I guess the boot image needed more RAM than the startup, couldn’t avail of the maximum amount, and failed the task sequence.
The quick fix: I bumped the startup memory to 1024 MB, tested, and everything’s sorted.