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O/S Deployment Thread, Recommendations please for school imaging ... in Technical; Right then, it's that time of the year where I look towards (as I'm all you are too) jobs that ...
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    soveryapt's Avatar
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    Recommendations please for school imaging ...

    Right then, it's that time of the year where I look towards (as I'm all you are too) jobs that need doing over the summer holidays and start getting prep in place.

    This years main thing will be a total reimage of the school. Not an upgrade, but reimaging all the desktops, so I want to know what you all think is the best way to go ahead with this.

    When I first started here, all the machines were individually built and unless the machine was in the ICT lab, it got forgotten about. So, I moved to a system where I had streamlined an XP disk with all the patches and bits I needed and then I used GPO to push out the rest and just had the odd manual install that I needed to do on the computers.

    Then I upgraded to Windows 7 and Server 2008R2 so I've started using WDS as the method for pushing out and I took the option to build a full image with all the software in that I needed and then deployed this.

    What I'm wondering this time (now that Office 2010 is somewhat deployable using scripts) is do I go for a vanilla base image (obviously with all the SP and updates etc) and then deploy everything else via GPO so that I have a bit more control over things?

    Or would you go somewhere inbetween or something else completely?

    Thanks
    Andy T

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    personally i try and have as little software on the base image as possible and sue script/gpo to deploy but to be honest its 6 of one 1/2 a dozen of the other

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    soveryapt (25th April 2012)

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    Quote Originally Posted by sted View Post
    personally i try and have as little software on the base image as possible and sue script/gpo to deploy but to be honest its 6 of one 1/2 a dozen of the other
    Yeah, that's pretty much why I'm reconsidering .. last time I created an image for this school was about 18months ago and it was done in such a short time frame that I didn't really have the option other than to create a one shot image .. but this time, I'm taking the control and actually planning .. lol ..

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    Steve21's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soveryapt View Post
    What I'm wondering this time (now that Office 2010 is somewhat deployable using scripts) is do I go for a vanilla base image (obviously with all the SP and updates etc) and then deploy everything else via GPO so that I have a bit more control over things?
    Base image here, then all software deployed after. At least that way it solves any issues if you don't want software deployed, or need a "quick" rebuild if something breaks, and it's easier to add new software etc etc later.

    Steve

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    soveryapt (25th April 2012)

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    mrbios's Avatar
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    Personally i went for the method of sticking absolutely everything (bar visual studio 2010) in to an image so all software could be used everywhere. Obviously there's the odd bit of department specific software that is only licensed to X amount of machines but we have so few (1 or 2 now i think and both in the same department) that this wasn't an issue.

    Added up to an image of about 25GB (30GB for the one with VS2010 in, which is one IT room only) and in most rooms now i have 40GB SSDs as the only drive or 60GB ones in the room that runs VS2010.

    Admitedly though once SCCM2012 is finally released i'll be moving to a system of deploying software where it's needed as, the way i understand it anyway, is SCCM deploys the software after OS install rather than deploying any sort of "image". If i was sticking with WDS though i'd avoid the bother of packaging each app for deployment and just stick it all in one.

    It's swings and roundabouts really, there are benefits in both ways of doing it and negatives in both so go with which way you'd prefer

    EDIT: i should probably add, if i didn't have SSDs i'd be doing it the opposite way to how i am currently. The fact SSDs don't care if you pack the drive full of stuff = might as well just have it all
    Last edited by mrbios; 25th April 2012 at 10:41 AM.

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    soveryapt (25th April 2012)

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    We use MDT2012 here. Microsoft Deployment Toolkit

    I wasn't happy managing images all the time, so now, we push out the WIM off the DVD and choose the software we want on machines at deployment time - if we want anything post-deployment, we'll roll it out over Group Policy or use Impero to push it out and check it into MDT for future deployments.

    It's an amazing, tiny little tool that will also deal with backing up and restoring user data for you as well.

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    garethedmondson (26th April 2012), simpsonj (26th April 2012), soveryapt (25th April 2012)

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    Here we use a clean image and then use WPKG to deploy software as needed.

    EDIT: We use WDS (not using MDT yet) to deploy W7 and ghost 7 (don't laugh it's awesome) to deploy XP (it also support Windows 2000, 98ss, 95 and NT4).

    Any request to install Vista is resolved with a swift blow from a foam rubber clue bat.

    EDIT EDIT: The last person who asked for OS2 was never seen again.
    Last edited by K.C.Leblanc; 25th April 2012 at 11:04 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mrbios View Post
    EDIT: i should probably add, if i didn't have SSDs i'd be doing it the opposite way to how i am currently. The fact SSDs don't care if you pack the drive full of stuff = might as well just have it all
    LOL .. SSDs .. oh how I dream of that day ..

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    soveryapt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrPerceptron View Post
    We use MDT2012 here. Microsoft Deployment Toolkit

    I wasn't happy managing images all the time, so now, we push out the WIM off the DVD and choose the software we want on machines at deployment time - if we want anything post-deployment, we'll roll it out over Group Policy or use Impero to push it out and check it into MDT for future deployments.

    It's an amazing, tiny little tool that will also deal with backing up and restoring user data for you as well.
    I never seemed to quite get my head around using MDT .. lol .. I might take another look though .. Ta

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    soveryapt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by K.C.Leblanc View Post
    Here we use a clean image and then use WPKG to deploy software as needed.
    Oooo .. I forgot about WPKG .. I started looking into that a bit back .. but I've slept since then .. might take another ganders at that for things that I can't GPO out .. (such as office as that would tie in with a visual display of it being installed then from what I remember - though I think that's GP-WPKG - but same principle)

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    I do a mix of the 2 here - we build a base image, store that, and then make a duplicate with as much in as possible.

    Some stuff is installed by GPO (mostly things that update regularly, like VLC, Java, Flash etc...).

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    I make an image with everything in, almost. A few things I add later because they were bought after the image, or are slightly different, or limited licences. Quicker to make 1 big image if everyone's having everything. Annoying when some department splits off and wants to take some software with them. WDS, auto put into an OU that installs about 5 more packages. Then moved into a department OU that installs the rest. Also use WDS's winpe and imagex to install xp via a batch file

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    soveryapt (26th April 2012)

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    plexer's Avatar
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    We now install os from MDT 2010 and then GPO to deploy s/w either with a native msi or in the case of office 2010 using the published script.

    Starting to look at App-V and creating MSI rather than streaming from a server.

    Ben

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    soveryapt (26th April 2012)

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    Personally I use fog and have a hardware independent image for xp and just finished testing one with win 7 that has absolutely everything including the kitchen sink. The win 7 image is 32 gb and auto renames and joins the domain.

    It takes 40 min from clicking go to bring ready for use per machine or 3.5 hours to do 30 machines and must say it's a god send. Would love to have a look at sccm looks very interesting.

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    soveryapt (26th April 2012)

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    soveryapt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TechieWils View Post
    Personally I use fog and have a hardware independent image for xp and just finished testing one with win 7 that has absolutely everything including the kitchen sink. The win 7 image is 32 gb and auto renames and joins the domain.

    It takes 40 min from clicking go to bring ready for use per machine or 3.5 hours to do 30 machines and must say it's a god send. Would love to have a look at sccm looks very interesting.
    I looked at FOG a bit back, but as we have WDS, it seemed to make more sense to go with the native solution. Thanks though

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