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How do you do....it? Thread, How do you setup your staff laptops for school and home use? offline files, caching in Technical; We've just moved to W7 over the summer and im now looking at the way the teachers use there laptops ...
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    jamin100's Avatar
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    How do you setup your staff laptops for school and home use? offline files, caching

    We've just moved to W7 over the summer and im now looking at the way the teachers use there laptops both on and off site.
    With windows XP staff had a domain login (domain\u.sername) and a local account login (local\teacher)
    So essentially they would have 2 different desktops and 2 sets of documents etc....

    Now, im looking at caching their domain logins onto the laptops so that they only have to use the one logon. I've also got there home areas to be available offline which is nice..

    Ive hit a few problems though. the staff dont have access to change the proxy settings in IE, so if they want to use their internet at home then they wont be able to.. Apart from installing another browser, is there any way around that?

    Syncing and notifications - I cant see anywhere that shows the member of staff the syncing progress once they connect back to the domain.. I can see the sync centre icon in the task bar but thats about it. Is there any other visual aid to help them determine when there files are synced?

    Also, how frequently do files sync once they are working online again? On the few accounts ive tested, once ive logged onto the domain i've had to force the laptops to sync with the server

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    I've always used offline lines, having 2 accounts leads to madness.

    Use Automatic proxy detection. wpad.dat file on an internal web server

    Win 7 is mostly better at offline file syncing, with the downside of less info, I've not had a problem really

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    The teachers can use a program that turns the proxy on and off such as proxy pal.

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    We have a two registry files in the Start Menu, Home and School for the proxy settings.

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    Ive hit a few problems though. the staff dont have access to change the proxy settings in IE, so if they want to use their internet at home then they wont be able to.. Apart from installing another browser, is there any way around that?
    If you use a .pac file for config you dont need to mess with proxy settings. It will just work.

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    I have the auto script (it's a county one, but this will work with local .pac files too) set via DHCP when the computers are on the domain ..

    Create an option 252 entry in DHCP explains a bit more and there is plenty more info out there too if you Google around, but this way, assuming you're using DHCP, it will ensure that if a setting changes you can make the change on the DHCP and et voila, it's done through the school next time it refreshes - just make sure your leases aren't set at some stupid length ..

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    synaesthesia's Avatar
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    Quite fond of keeping laptops entirely separate. Offline files tended to cause more problems than it fixes and even well scripted synchronisation systems had shortfalls. If something went wrong, onus soon found it's way to the IT department. When kept separate, it's still easy to link up to shared folders on site if need be, and responsibility is therefore on the user to lose^H^H^H^Hcontrol their own files. And with the variety of remote access systems available, I don't even see a need for anything other than something that connects to the internet.

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    Proxy pac file. Our filters are on the DMZ, users can hit them from home. We filter all of our users external and internal. It's our device, so we want to dictate what users do with it.

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    Our set up for staff laptops is:

    • Single domain account with cached logins from home
    • Proxy.pac file so no proxy changes are required when at home
    • Windows 7 Offline files
    • We also make a small partition available in case there are any problems with MyDocs/offline cache or if they need to store any large media files etc.


    Seems to work well for us.

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