Uninstall or Remove Windows Deployment Services Role

In this post I will cover the steps to Uninstall or remove Windows Deployment Services from Windows Server. In a big organizations it is impossible to image laptops manually. This is because there are lot of computers in a big setup.

That would require a lot of admins to image Windows laptops and other machines. However there is a solution by Microsoft which is called WDS. The Windows Deployment Services is a technology from Microsoft for network-based installation of Windows operating systems.

If you remember in windows server 2003 it was called as Remote Installation Services (RIS). WDS is a revised version of remote installation services.

While the sole purpose of WDS is to remotely deploy the windows operating systems, you can do it very efficiently. WDS is a server role and it is not enabled/installed by default. The admins have to enable this role to make use of it.

About Windows Deployment Services

Deployment Services role enables you to efficiently deploy windows operating systems, particularly Windows 7, Windows 10 and other server OS.

150Without the presence of local IT, Windows Deployment Services role can be used to set up new computers through a network-based installation. In addition to that you also get rid of manual work of installing directly from CD or DVD media.

But why would you uninstall WDS ?. Is it safe to uninstall WDS and install it back again ?. WDS can be uninstalled when you see it is not working correctly. Or may be the event viewer is throwing lot of WDS related errors and you have no time to fix all those errors. The solution is simply uninstall and reinstall the WDS role.

In SCCM, when you enable multi-cast on a distribution point, the WDS is installed on the distribution point server. At times when you need to fix the operating system deployment issues in SCCM, you usually repair PXE and multicast roles. When you repair multicast, the WDS role is installed again on the server.

The below steps are performed on Windows Server. However the same steps apply to almost all the server operating systems. Before you uninstall WDS ensure that no computers are being imaged by WDS at the time of uninstallation. Ensure that there is no pending reboot on the server before you begin the uninstallation.

How to Uninstall Windows Deployment Services Role

To uninstall Windows Deployment Services role :-

  • Login to the Windows Server with an account that has enough permissions to modify or remove roles.
  • Open Server Manager. On the top right corner, Click Manage.
  • Click Remove Roles and Features.

Click Next on Before you begin page.

Remove Roles and Features Wizard

In this step you verify the server name on which you are uninstalling the Windows Deployment Server role. Click Next.

Remove Roles and Features Wizard

On Server Roles page, un-check Windows Deployment Services role. This brings up another box that prompts you to remove management tools. Click Remove Features. Next on the Features page, click Next. Notice that Windows deployment services, deployment server and Transport Server roles are unchecked. Click Next.

Uninstall Windows Deployment Services Role

On the Confirmation page, check the box “Restart the destination server automatically if required“. After WDS is uninstalled, if the server requires a reboot, you confirm the automatic reboot of server by checking this box. You may skip checking this box and later reboot the server manually if required. Click Remove.

Uninstall Windows Deployment Services Role

Finally you will notice that Windows Deployment Services role has been uninstalled. The last screen that you see shows “removal succeeded on Computer Name”. Click Close to close the wizard. You may want to reboot the server as you just uninstalled WDS role. Hope this guide helps.

Remove Roles and Features Wizard

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