Advice on Desktop Deployment

kalebkspkalebksp Member Posts: 1,033 ■■■■■□□□□□
I've been trying to figure out the best method for desktop deployment in my environment.

We have about 40 desktops and 30 laptops. Most are Dells but some of the laptops are Panasonic. We replace desktops and laptops in phases, so some people have the latest models, some have one generation older, and a few have very old computers. This makes deploying images more difficult since to get the least error prone images I would have to create multiple images for each model with the appropriate software for each section of the organization. The tools I have at my disposal are Ghost and LANDesk.

I'm considering creating customized XP installation disks and scripting the install of all the necessary applications, but this takes quite a while to complete. My boss would like to shoot for 20 minute rebuilds of systems when necessary. We also do not use roaming profiles, so if there is an automated method of reinstalling the OS while retaining or backing up the profile, that would be a bonus.

What would you do for desktop deployment within these constraints?

Thanks in advance.

Comments

  • dynamikdynamik Banned Posts: 12,314 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I'd just make an image each time you configure a unique make/model/configuration. You'll eventually have an image for everything. Since you already have to do the work of installing and configuring everything, why not just spend a few more minutes and make an image?

    You might want to look at setting up RIS/WDS as well.

    As far as the user profiles go, scan state and load state are probably going to be the closest you get to that type of automation (with the possible exception of 3rd party tools).

    User State Migration in Windows XP
  • tierstentiersten Member Posts: 4,505
    There is software available now that will apparently generate a generic disk image for use with tools like Ghost. You can then use this generic image with any PC and it will automatically install the necessary HAL and drivers. This means you don't need a custom image for each platform you've got deployed. It is usually pretty pricey tho.

    The one that came up recently was UIU. I think Acronis has an optional license that adds this as well but I've not looked too closely.
  • kalebkspkalebksp Member Posts: 1,033 ■■■■■□□□□□
    dynamik wrote: »
    As far as the user profiles go, scan state and load state are probably going to be the closest you get to that type of automation (with the possible exception of 3rd party tools).

    User State Migration in Windows XP

    I'll have to look into that.
    tiersten wrote:
    There is software available now that will apparently generate a generic disk image for use with tools like Ghost. You can then use this generic image with any PC and it will automatically install the necessary HAL and drivers. This means you don't need a custom image for each platform you've got deployed. It is usually pretty pricey tho.

    The one that came up recently was UIU. I think Acronis has an optional license that adds this as well but I've not looked too closely.

    Have you used UIU? If so, what did you think of it?

    I can't use any deployment software other than Ghost and LANDesk (I work in a very large organization and the standards are set in stone), but I might be able to use UIU since it works along with Ghost.

    Thanks!
  • tierstentiersten Member Posts: 4,505
    I've not used UIU. It was just mentioned in a thread here recently.
  • loxleynewloxleynew Member Posts: 405
    Sysprep + ghost is your friend. Use it.
  • dynamikdynamik Banned Posts: 12,314 ■■■■■■■■□□
    tiersten wrote: »
    I think Acronis has an optional license that adds this as well but I've not looked too closely.

    Both Acronis and Symantec have products that allow you to restore an image to dissimilar hardware. It sounds like he's going to still need a variety of images based on application needs. This would probably cut down on the total number of images though; good suggestion.
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