In the world of Linux containers where deployment takes on the order of seconds, even the best-case scenario for spinning up a new Windows host can seem like an eternity.
Clearly, you don’t want to wait for the entire Windows install process each time you bring up a Windows guest OS. Even automated, this would take 15+ minutes and all it would deliver is a base, non-patched, non-customized system.
Windows Sysprep allows you to build a base Windows template with any patches, customizations, and files that you want in a base system. And then any subsequent guest OS created with that template will inherit all those template basics.
I wrote this article to give developers a peek into how these templates are created so they can influence the base images that their Operations teams generate.