Deployment,Management,OS X,Third Party Applications August 16, 2012 at 8:49 pm

New Graphical System Image Creation Tool

Filewave has released a new image creation tool called ‘Filewave Lightning.’   This GUI-based tool is specifically for generating 10.7 and 10.8 images along with baking in additional packages if desired.  According to Filewave’s website:

“FileWave Lightning is the ultimate image creation and deployment tool using the new, ultra-fast, Thunderbolt™ technology. Lightning allows you to create clean, untouched, never-booted images based on 10.7 and 10.8 installer media.  You can even create a local user account or bake in additional PKG’s during creation. Already have ASR ready images created with another tool?  No problem!  Drag those DMGs into FileWave Lightning and they are ready to deploy at the fastest possible speed to your client machines.”

Lightning looks like it could be a great tool for generating images without having to fuss with System Image Utility or delve into commandline and manage catalogs with InstaDMG.  If you want a tool for spitting out an image with a minimum amount of effort, Filewave Lightning seems to fit the bill.  Filewave Lightning can also deploy the image over ThunderBolt if you fancy that deployment method.

Lightning doesn’t seem like it would handle complicated images with nested dependencies as well as other tools would (like InstaDMG), but it would be perfectly serviceable for creating base OS X images with baked in user accounts and/or management tools.  To date, there are no other tools out there with a friendly interface that can both build images and deploy them.

Nate Walck

Nate is a Systems Reliability Engineer at Dropbox, Inc in San Francisco, CA. He runs along with Sam Keeley and is one of the founding members of the ##osx-server IRC channel on He loves being involved in the Mac Admin community and using Open Source projects whenever possible, especially Munki, The Luggage and Puppet.

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