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MIS Systems Thread, SIMS Deployment Crossroads - SOLUS3 or RemoteApp in Technical; Dear all, We currently have SIMS on 70 laptops and about 20 PCs. SIMS is used heavily by teachers to ...
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    SIMS Deployment Crossroads - SOLUS3 or RemoteApp

    Dear all,

    We currently have SIMS on 70 laptops and about 20 PCs. SIMS is used heavily by teachers to take class registers five times a day, plus weekly reports.

    SOLUS2 has worked flawlessly for us for years; but SOLUS2 support is being withdrawn by our LA shortly and Capita will likely withdraw SOLUS2 support next summer.

    The 70 laptops are taken home nightly by staff and therefore this apparently will make SOLUS3 deployment and updates very problematic; the laptops will be 'offline' when the updates are deployed. They may never get the update. They may require the update to be re-deployed. There is certainly no way of guaranteeing that when the laptops next try to run SIMS it will have been upgraded.

    So, the question is... Do I either

    1. Try to roll out SOLUS3 and hope for the best, or
    2. Try to deploy SIMS as a RemoteApp application (i.e. a seamless TS application)?

    Has anyone used SIMS under RemoteApp? Do things like reports that launch Word, work OK? What about laptops? Does anyone else have SOLUS3 working in a similar environment?

    Grateful for any and all thoughts!

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    ChrisH's Avatar
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    We have used SIMS as a remote app with no issues for a couple of years now. Reports and printing work fine, certainly takes the headaches out of updating.

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    Thanks for your reply Chris.

    For this to work do you also have Office installed also as a RemoteApp, for reports to work? Or can reports be made to open the copy of Office on the local PC?

    Also... does SIMS run OK as a seamless application, or are there things you had to do to tweak it?

    Thanks!

    Moby
    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisH View Post
    We have used SIMS as a remote app with no issues for a couple of years now. Reports and printing work fine, certainly takes the headaches out of updating.

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    SIMS will use the instance of office on the server. To get a "seamless" experience you will need to get rid of a few of the warnings that may pop up. This will involve signing the remote app with a trusted certificate and setting some GPO stuff. A member did a good blog post about it @ Using SSO (Single Sign On) with Remote Desktop for Thin Clients - Blogs - EduGeek.net

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    tmcd35's Avatar
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    On a similar note, as anyone managed to deploy SIMS using APP-V?

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    Quote Originally Posted by tmcd35 View Post
    On a similar note, as anyone managed to deploy SIMS using APP-V?
    I trialled it a while ago and yes, it worked very well. It was only the APP-V licensing model which stopped us using it at the time. I think this might be a strong candidate for our future plans.
    Last edited by jinnantonnixx; 13th November 2012 at 10:03 AM.

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    tmcd35 (13th November 2012)

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    At the recent Software Update Seminar, Jonathan Wood, Product Manager for all things SOLUS said that SOLUS2 will be supported by Capita (SIMS) until the Spring 2014 release

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    tmcd35's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jinnantonnixx View Post
    I trialled it a while ago and yes, it worked very well. It was only the APP-V licensing model which stopped us using it at the time. I think this might be a strong candidate for our future plans.
    Very interesting! I've been looking at App-V licencing under EES and just this one program working is more than worth the cost alone!

    Did you test it with Office? I assume an App-V'd SIMS.net would access a local office install? or could it work with a seperate App-V Office package?

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    I know of this; but our LA take a different view and want to withdraw SOLUS2 at the end of this year. We'll be unsupported by them (and have to test & deploy our own updates) if we continue with SOLUS2.

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Windy_Miller View Post
    At the recent Software Update Seminar, Jonathan Wood, Product Manager for all things SOLUS said that SOLUS2 will be supported by Capita (SIMS) until the Spring 2014 release

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    How would an App-V install be upgraded routinely (by SOLUS3 etc)? Would you not have to re-package it every time it got ugpraded (apologies, I don't know much about App-V yet)...

    Quote Originally Posted by jinnantonnixx View Post
    I trialled it a while ago and yes, it worked very well. It was only the APP-V licensing model which stopped us using it at the time. I think this might be a strong candidate for our future plans.

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    jinnantonnixx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tmcd35 View Post
    Very interesting! I've been looking at App-V licencing under EES and just this one program working is more than worth the cost alone!

    Did you test it with Office? I assume an App-V'd SIMS.net would access a local office install? or could it work with a seperate App-V Office package?
    It would be just as if the SIMS software is installed locally, so it would access the machine in the same way. The only difference is that the software is pulled down on demand, and kept locally. This is why it's important to sequence the software correctly when you set it up.
    Last edited by jinnantonnixx; 13th November 2012 at 10:48 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mobybrick View Post

    The 70 laptops are taken home nightly by staff and therefore this apparently will make SOLUS3 deployment and updates very problematic; the laptops will be 'offline' when the updates are deployed. They may never get the update. They may require the update to be re-deployed. There is certainly no way of guaranteeing that when the laptops next try to run SIMS it will have been upgraded.
    Please tell me this part is a joke?

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    Quote Originally Posted by mobybrick View Post
    How would an App-V install be upgraded routinely (by SOLUS3 etc)? Would you not have to re-package it every time it got ugpraded (apologies, I don't know much about App-V yet)...
    How to upgrade a package:
    VanBragt.Net Virtualization - How to: Update Virtualized Application Part 1: App-V

    Though personally, I'd make a new package. You then have the flexibility of rolling out different versions, which is the only practical option if you host loads of schools.
    Last edited by jinnantonnixx; 13th November 2012 at 10:55 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mobybrick View Post
    I know of this; but our LA take a different view and want to withdraw SOLUS2 at the end of this year. We'll be unsupported by them (and have to test & deploy our own updates) if we continue with SOLUS2.
    I'm amazed - are they well ahead with SOLUS3?

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    Quote Originally Posted by mobybrick View Post
    How would an App-V install be upgraded routinely (by SOLUS3 etc)? Would you not have to re-package it every time it got ugpraded (apologies, I don't know much about App-V yet)...
    Personally I'd rather repackage 1 install from scratch than visit every machine to manage a SOLUS2 update or fight with SOLUS3. I'd use an MSI packager if I could get it to work without creating a corrupt package. I tried running as a TS-App but the workload killed the server (actually, that was my fault - I forgot to take the upgrade checker out of the shortcut so every time anyone tried running SIMS the system checked for upgrades, 30 people run SIMS at the same time and bang ).

    I think TS-App (setup properly) or App-V is the solution to managing SIMS upgrades.

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