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How to Implement PXE Booting from USB-C and Thunderbolt Ethernet Adapters

Summary: Information about facilitating the Pre-Boot Execution (PXE) boot process when using a USB-C or Thunderbolt Ethernet adapter.

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Article Content


PXE Booting

When PXE booting, several options may be required to be enabled in the BIOS (Figure 1).

Note: The following screenshots (Figure 1 and 2) are examples of the required options. The BIOS options for your computer may be different.
  • Set the Fastboot option to Thorough to enable UEFI PXE boot.
  • Windows 10 and 11: Legacy Option ROMs should be off. Secure Boot may be enabled if wanted.
    Dell BIOS Advanced Boot Options
    Figure 1: Dell BIOS Advanced Boot Options
  • If you are using a USB-C adapter, enable Thunderbolt Boot support in the BIOS: (check all boxes) (Figure 2.)
    Dell XPS 15 9550 BIOS, USB/THunderbolt Configuration
    Figure 2: Enabling Thunderbolt Boot Support
  • The server must support UEFI PXE Boot (Windows Server 2012 is required usually).
  • Exit the BIOS, select UEFI PXE Boot IPv4.

WDS configuration for UEFI must contain x86 and x64 boot images (Figure 3).
Windows Deployment Services PXE Boot Policy
Figure 3: Windows Deployment Services PXE Boot Policy

Note: You need the Realtek USB FE Family Controller driver (version 10.9.504.2016 has been verified to work, newer versions can be used, but have not been verified) in your Windows 10 PE image for MAC pass-thru to work properly.

Additional Information

Article Properties

Affected Product

Desktops & All-in-Ones, Laptops, Workstations

Last Published Date

11 Jan 2024



Article Type

How To