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O/S Deployment Thread, Bulk deploying netbooks in Technical; I'm just starting to put through a quick install tutorial for a primary school who are likely to be using ...
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    GrumbleDook's Avatar
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    Bulk deploying netbooks

    I'm just starting to put through a quick install tutorial for a primary school who are likely to be using netbooks (flavour to be decided shortly) from September. The idea is to get them in before summer and get the staff used to them, as well as talking through easy fix methods for the external tech they get in 1/2 a day a week.

    Initial thoughts are about only using cloud services for storage, or using SD cards for the students so that there is nothing on the local machine to lose.

    Cloud storage would be via a hosted sharepoint platform, but there are considerations of bandwidth (both wireless and also that of the school to the hosted solution) but we all know that SD cards may not be the best solution in the world, especially the risk of loss or damage with constantly being pushed in and out.

    Since these devices are likely to be XP Home due to cost what do people feel about using FOG for the deployment ... would they have other preferred options (even if that includes coughing up for XP Pro and using WDS).

    How are people who are using netbooks in primary schools findig them? Do you have a single login or do you still use domain accounts?

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    SimpleSi's Avatar
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    Since these devices are likely to be XP Home due to cost what do people feel about using FOG for the deployment ... would they have other preferred options (even if that includes coughing up for XP Pro and using WDS).
    When starting out with new XP Home machines, I simply set up one machine and then take an image of it to a portable USB drive, copy that image to the other machines and just simply rename them afterwards.

    When setting up the master machine, I partition the hard drive into 2 so there is a second partition able to take an image of the first main partition.

    Then, when I need to do subsequent image updates, I just take image of main partition to 2nd partition and then send that image to all the other machines 2nd partitions (to speed things up I send compA to CompB and CompC. then from CompB to CompD and E, CompC to CompF and G etc)

    This technique seems to be time effective on a batch of 15-20 machines, obviously as the numbers increase, it may well be worth investing time and effort into getting FOG or one of the other professional ways of image deployment to work

    How are people who are using netbooks in primary schools finding them? Do you have a single login or do you still use domain accounts?
    I use single login and map a shared area on a server to a drive letter.

    I've got a little AutoIt script that runs on logon and lets pupils choose which class they are in and maps their actual class sub-folder to drive P: (for pupil ) (Its configurable via a simple .ini file as I use the same prog across 7 schools)

    regards

    Simon

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    GrumbleDook's Avatar
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    Sounds good so far ... what software are you using for imaging?

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    SimpleSi's Avatar
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    I use Ghost off a CD now but I used to use an old copy of Acronis off a USB floppy drive.

    I've also used Partimage from a linux boot CD but the image sizes tended to be nearly the same size as the partition being imaged so I stopped playing with that.

    regards

    Simon

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