I work at the University of Copenhagen. The computers in our student environment runs Windows XP SP3. They have one harddisk with two partitions: a C:\ drive - 50 GB for OS & apps, and a D:\ drive that uses the rest of the space on the disk (typically 100 GB). Both partitions are formattet with NTFS.

We do imaging every sunday night (with automated WOL and PXE boot) to make sure that there is a fresh installation on the computers every monday morning. The image is distributed from a Netware 6.5 server running ZFD 7sp1_ir1. We update the image for the student environt four times a year.

I would like to do a test where I store the image file locally on the harddrive. Instead of using all the remaing space for the D:\ drive I would reserve 10 GB for a "hidden" image partition. I am thinking about formatting the image partition with a linux filesystem. I hope that doing so would hide the partition for the Windows system. I guess that it wouldn't show up as a drive letter in the Windows File Explorer, but I know that the partition would be available in the Windows disk manager (the students dont have access to disk manager).

Bold text is where I need help.

The setup would be:
partition 1: C:\ 50 GB NTFS
partition 2: D:\ 90 GB NTFS
partition 3: 10 GB Linux filesystem (any suggestions?)

So my weekly image script would look something like this:
img pd1
img pd2
img pc1 ntfs 50000
img pc2 ntfs 90000
img pa1
command to mount the local linux partition (partition3)
img rl path_to_local_file/windows.zmg a1:p1
img rl path_to_local_file/windows.zmg a2:p2
dismount the local linux partition

Every time we update our image (four times a year) I would have to push it locally with this command:
img pd3
img pc3 linux_file_system 10000
img rp zfd //zfd/data/linux.zmg a1:p3

I guess this would be how I would take my image (when I have updated it)
command to create a local linux filesystem on partition3
command to format the local linux file system
command to mount the linux file system

img ml path_to_local_file/windows.zmg p1:a1
img ml path_to_local_file/windows.zmg p2:a2
command to dismount local linux file system
img mp zfd //zfd/data/linux.zmg p3:a1

Any help would be appreciated.

I have been working with zfd since ver 3.2, so I know the basic of imaging againt the server pretty good. But I have no expience with local imaging. The main reason I would like to test local imaging is speed. The image file is about 8GB, and it takes about 30 min. to restore an image over the network. I have tried multicast, but this runs extremely slow (+ 4 hours)