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O/S Deployment Thread, Imaging Machines in Technical; Hopefully this is the right bit. We currently use GHOST for our imaging solution but I have heard of various ...
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    Imaging Machines

    Hopefully this is the right bit. We currently use GHOST for our imaging solution but I have heard of various other bits of software out there and some that were free, I am looking to change the way we do things, can anyone point me into the right direction for these other bits of software.

    Cheers

    Matt

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    ChrisH's Avatar
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    Look into WDS, it comes with Server 2003/8 . Theres plenty of topics on here about it.

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    Michael's Avatar
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    I use Image for Windows. Not free, but easy to use and very cheap!

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    tmcd35's Avatar
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    I was looking at this just the other week, having used Ghost for years. Found Clonezilla (recommended by others on this site). A very good alternative to Ghost, now I just need to set up PXE booting!

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    I use FOG Imaging and it seems to work perfectly. It is nice, if you have VPN access to the network and set your computers to PXE boot first, you can start the computer imaging process from anywhere. FOG is free.

    I have created one desktop image for about 7 different desktop models. We used to have different images for each model, but that was making the image process too confusing.

    I am presently working on scripting an automated sysprep (using the mini-setup) and using FOG to rename the PC and join the domain automatically. My scripts initiate a series of restarts to run gpupdate and trigger the Group Policy deployed software to automatically install, so that the entire imaging process is zero-touch.

    Hope this helps. Here's the link: SourceForge.net: FOG - A Free Cloning Solution

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    Michael's Avatar
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    I am presently working on scripting an automated sysprep (using the mini-setup)
    You can automate sysprep completely using an answer file. You can either provide a list of workstation names for it to use, or make it the only manual requirement of Mini Setup. I usually go with the second option, so I can organise machines in numerical order.

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    ranj's Avatar
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    Does anyone know much about BDD (business Desktop Deployment) can anyone tell me if this is Microsoft's take on imaging machines? I heard its good alternative to ghosting machines. If anyone uses this I'd been keen to hear from them.

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    Thanks for the replies, the ones I had heard about have been listed so I will take a look into them. I have had a look at BDD, it looks good but not used it yet so cannot comment, its one option we have but I'm evaluating other bits at the moment.

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    somabc's Avatar
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    itidiots.com - Episode 47: Introduction To BDD 2007
    itidiots.com - Episode 48: BDD Lite Touch of Vista / Office 2007

    BDD is certainly useful for automating windows installs and then installing extra software like office.

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    EduTech's Avatar
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    We currently use NetRunna very good bit of software... there bringing some major updates out soon aswell which sound very interesting.. =]

    Not free though..

    James.

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    FN-GM's Avatar
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    I use ghost. with the console i can start a room on image in seconds.

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    pagelad's Avatar
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    I Use Acronis snap deploy.

    Very easy, no need to sysprep. Just install your windows \ software boot to its nice PXE with graphical user interface and make an image.

    Boot the rest of the machines up with PXE and select deploy, they all then appear in the management console and a few clicks and your deploying.

    Automatically resets the SIDS, joins the network etc and can automatically number the machines for you

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    I too use Ghost. Once you get your head around the Console, it's excellent.

    I can rebuild a classroom in about half a day now (30 PCs), so have starting to do rebuilds during half terms which has helped performance in some of the ICT Suites. We use CSE here, and although it is winding me up with various issues, the application deployment (using Prism) and control is very good (when it works!).

    Pete

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    Hi,

    I also use ghost, as FragglePete says, once you get your head around the consoles it's a fantastic program to use. If you have good infrastructure it's also really quick.

    I am able to ghost a whole room in about 1 hour, from start to finish.

    Can't get much better than that.

    D

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    We use HD Clone, very good for client to client, as we had problems with SATA and ghost.

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