In this post we will be discussing and talking about troubleshooting various PXE boot issues.

Issue 1 – Not getting IP address from DHCP Server

Ideally we may think that issue could be with DHCP Server, however there are rare chances of having DHCP server issue. If working system with fully loaded OS is getting IP address, there is no reason that Bare Metal should not be getting IP address.

TroubleshootPXEBootIssue 01

Problem: One of the reason for not getting IP could be WDS Service (Windows Deployment Services Server) in stopped state. Login to the WDS Server ie Distribution Point and verify the same.

TroubleshootPXEBootIssue 02

Solution: Start the service, and verify the status showing as running.

TroubleshootPXEBootIssue 03

Once done, we can see IP address is getting assigned to the system and PXE Boot process started.

TroubleshootPXEBootIssue 04 1

Issue 2 – PXE Boot aborted with TFTP message: smsboot\x64\

Problem: This indicates that no Task Sequence has been targeted to the System. One of the reason could be:

System was previously built and system details along with MAC address exists in SCCM database. If Task Sequence is targeted on collection “Unknown Computers”, system will be treated as known Computer because of existing entry, hence boot image will not load we will see following message:

TFTP Download: smsboot\x64\

TroubleshootPXEBootIssue 05

If we check smspxe.log (Location d:\Program files\Microsoft Configuration Manager\logs), we can see following important sequence:

00:15:5D:E1:44:53, 4957E604-1571-4508-AF3B-46EC9CEFCB1C: Device is in the database.
Client boot action reply: <ClientIDReply><Identification Unknown="0" DuplicateSMBIOS="0" DuplicateMACAddress="0" ItemKey="16777320" ServerName=""><Machine><ClientID/><NetbiosName/></Machine></Identification><PXEBootAction LastPXEAdvertisementID="" LastPXEAdvertisementTime="" OfferID="" OfferIDTime="" PkgID="" PackageVersion="" PackagePath="" BootImageID="" Mandatory=""/></ClientIDReply>
00:15:5D:E1:44:53, 4957E604-1571-4508-AF3B-46EC9CEFCB1C: no advertisements found
00:15:5D:E1:44:53, 4957E604-1571-4508-AF3B-46EC9CEFCB1C: No boot action. Aborted.
TroubleshootPXEBootIssue 06

As there is no Task Sequence targeted to this known computer with Mac Address “00:15:5D:E1:44:53”, we will see error “no advertisements found” following with error “No boot action. Aborted”.

Solution: As system exists in SCCM Database, we need to search the system with the MAC address.

Launch SCCM Console, navigate to \Assets and Compliance\Overview\Devices, under right Pane click on Add Criteria and select MAC Address and click on Add.

TroubleshootPXEBootIssue 08

Provider MAC Address of system on which we got error, this will be right below search window and click on Search.

TroubleshootPXEBootIssue 10

Once you see existing system under search, right click and click on Delete, once page Confirm Deletion popups up, click on Delete.

TroubleshootPXEBootIssue 11

We are all set to do PXE boot now, once we initiate PXE boot, we can see message:

TFTP Download: smsboot\x64\
Press F12 for network service boot.

TroubleshootPXEBootIssue 12

Issue 3 – No Task Sequence found error

Though this error doesn’t really qualify for actual PXE boot issue, but this contributes to one of the most common errors we see when Boot Image is load and we get error:
Failed to Run Task Sequence
There are no task sequences available for this computer

If the device is already part of SCCM database, you will be seeing this error. You need to find the MAC address of the device by checking smsts.log located under x:\windows\temp\smstslog and delete it from SCCM console.

There could be another reason also for getting this error. For new devices also, when you are using existing ethernet adapter / dongle to build new systems, you will get error “No task sequence found”. The reason is, MAC address of ethernet adapter is already registered with previous device, and Task Sequence engine thinks that we are still using the old device for rebuild and hence treats it like a known device rather than Unknown computer. The fix is very simple by adding the MAC address of device under Duplicate hardware identifiers list. Check how to fix now task sequence found error to know more in detail