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Hardware Thread, What would you buy? in Technical; I've been asked by the I.T Manager today to think over the holidays of any sytems i would like in ...
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    adameye's Avatar
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    What would you buy?

    I've been asked by the I.T Manager today to think over the holidays of any sytems i would like in place to help me do my job easier..

    i work in a primary school with 9 classrooms, an ICT Suite, Laptop Suite and 3-4 desktops in each classroom. All staff with school laptops also.. The network is running on a typical primary school win2k3 server domain.. Active directory, dns ect.. we also have an 8 access point netgear wireless controller system in place..

    if you were asked this question what would you go for...

    i am very interested in a ghosting system..

    let me know your ideas
    also what ghosting solutions do you have in place at your schools that work well?


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    nephilim's Avatar
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    ruckus, you would need about 3 APs across your school.

    As for ghosting, its based on personal preference. Some like fog, some like acronis etc

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    adameye's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nephilim View Post
    ruckus, you would need about 3 APs across your school.
    We are quite happy with the netgear system as all our infrastructure has netgear written all over it..
    and i like them for their support
    also i think ruckus is rather expensive... last time i checked anyway..

    [QUOTE=As for ghosting, its based on personal preference. Some like fog, some like acronis etc[/QUOTE]

    i've looked at FOG but not heard of acronis...

    normally i just hit up a norton ghost boot disk and ghost HDD's one by one..

    i want somthing were if we needed to we could do some automated overnight network ghosting if you see what i mean...

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    FN-GM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by adameye View Post
    We are quite happy with the netgear system as all our infrastructure has netgear written all over it..
    and i like them for their support
    also i think ruckus is rather expensive... last time i checked anyway..



    i've looked at FOG but not heard of acronis...

    normally i just hit up a norton ghost boot disk and ghost HDD's one by one..

    i want somthing were if we needed to we could do some automated overnight network ghosting if you see what i mean...
    With the ghost suite you can image a whole room from the server. No need to boot into ghost from a bootdisk. You set it up and execute the task and the whole room will shutdown and then begin imaging.

    Something that will make things easier for you would be dual monitors on your machine....

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    adameye (14th July 2009)

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    mossj's Avatar
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    Fog for imaging (it supports remote imaging, so you can do it overnight)
    UVNC for Remote Support
    UVNC one click for Admin Remote Support
    ITALC for teachers (and you)

    EDUSWEEP for scanning kiddies drive
    SPICEWORKS for helpdesk

    All free though, but getting the time to do them all would be a god send. Also look at a smartphone/Multitool/Dual monitors if they want something costly.

    I have my G1 paired to my deskphone + email sent through, I can also VNC onto my desktop should I want to do anything simple (change user passwords typically), also have it monitoring all the servers and IP Cameras setup on it to.

    Add a multitool to that and a small projector bag for cable ties/mice, etc. And you will have no need to return to the office for days.
    Last edited by mossj; 14th July 2009 at 10:27 PM.

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    adameye (14th July 2009)

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    Another vote for FOG for imaging, we used to use Ghost from Norton and tbh FOG is a lot better, free to.
    Also like the spiceworks.

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    witch's Avatar
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    I use Ghost and it is fine!
    What about some sort of print managing software?
    You didn't mention your printers - are they networked (NOT through print servers?) Since we went to networked printers my life has been a lot easier. I work in two schools, one slightly bigger than yours, and one pretty much the same
    Barcode scanner etc for inventory
    Definitely the remoted support stuff
    Decent helpdesk if you can get them to use it!

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    adameye (21st July 2009)

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    sparkeh's Avatar
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    *Highly recommend FOG for imaging as well.
    *Inventory system: I use Spiceworks for this and very happy with it (and FREE!)
    *Helpdesk: very important, Spiceworks covers this as well.
    *Internal remote support tools: For day to day stuff I use LanView which is excellent but no longer being developed but still worth a look I reckon. Also look at iTalc.
    *External remote support: I currently use LogMeIn to connect to my schools servers when offsite. Has proved to be very useful.

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    adameye (21st July 2009)

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    mossj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by witch View Post
    Decent helpdesk if you can get them to use it!
    You don't have to get them (your users to use it), most helpdesks can pull tickets out of emails so we just pointed it at our support email address. The users don't even know they've made a ticket..

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    adameye (21st July 2009)

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    R0M
    R0M is offline
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    Just in-case FOG didn't have enough votes, here is one more .

    VNC is good but if your school is small enough that its not a big deal walking over there I personally find it easier to just go there for 90% of jobs.

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    mossj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by R0M View Post
    VNC is good but if your school is small enough that its not a big deal walking over there I personally find it easier to just go there for 90% of jobs.
    It's not really about how big the school is, it's more about multitasking

    For example the typical interview question - "the head phones and can't get her powerpoint to work on the laptop, then a member of admin phones and wants you to install office 2007, then a teacher phones and asks you for your assitance with two computers in her room"

    Which one are you going to do first... I'm going to do all of them as I can just VNC onto the admin machine and kick of the office 2007 install, then I can multi task on VNC between the other three computers. Only thing Remote Support can't help you with is connection/startup/hardware issues.

    Oh and also look at BGinfo from microsoft, it will print dynamic information on your users desktop so when they phone you they can tell you the machines name/ip and other useful info. - Again FREE

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    adameye (21st July 2009)

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    Hardware (or a VM) for a Nagios+Cacti+Ossec box connected to a Weathergoose / sms modem / smtp server is handy for fixing problems before they become apparent to users and a good learning experience. The ability to mysteriously appear and fix a problem before the user reports it does no harm to your reputation.

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    adameye (21st July 2009)

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    Ric_'s Avatar
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    +1 for FOG - simply awesome
    +1 for Nagios
    +1 for print monitoring (PyKota is my favourite - open source)
    +1 for helpdesk (GLPI in my case)

    Of course to make you life much better, get some training and certs too while there's money going - you will have saved thousands by implementing the above over proprietry software anyway

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    adameye (21st July 2009)

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    mossj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pete View Post
    Nagios+Cacti+Ossec box connected to a Weathergoose / sms modem / smtp server is handy for fixing problems
    What does it do? How?

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    Nagios is a great - free tool

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