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Windows Server 2000/2003 Thread, CC3 --> Vanilla Windows (without wiping?) in Technical; Do fresh install I did that with CSE I put it simply, would you rather do a fresh Windows 7 ...
  1. #16

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    Do fresh install I did that with CSE I put it simply, would you rather do a fresh Windows 7 install or use a manufacters build?

  2. #17

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    I think it is perfectly possible to do a CC3-->vanilla move within the current domain, and its also a perfectly valid model to migrate to a clean domain too but either way it depends how comfortable you are with AD. Either way you will be looking to either do a lot of hard work on a migration or a lot of hard work untangling the current domain. Something that might make your decision easier is thinking about the other services in your domain that rely upon domain services and the difficulty of migrating those to a new domain (and whether or not it is desirable to migrate them anyway, e.g. as part of an upgrade to these systems alongside your main network upgrade). Oh and think about how confident you are in the current health of your domain/forest as they stand now. If you think it is robust then that might suggest staying with what you have, and if you think it is problematic this might favour a migration.

    As @Norphy says, we've chosen to stay with our current domain/forest (we actually have a 2 domain forest with CC3 in the parent domain). I'd suggest there's a cost no matter what you do and its just a case of choosing where you are most comfortable with this cost hitting you.

    To stay within the current domain you will need to create a new OU structure and, I would suggest, a complete new set of GPOs. You'll obviously need to replace the GPOs that were in place for CC3, that goes without saying, but even for your own custom ones I would suggest starting again with fresh ones because the old ones will have been designed based on assumptions about your current environment. You then need to consider what will need to change with regards to user account settings (e.g. profile, etc) when you move them to the new OU structure and you'll need to create a 'test' network to test and practice the migration process.

    I'd also suggest that you must rebuild all the DCs rather than simply attempt to uninstall things. This is the easiest way to clean up the CC3 software/services that will be running on them - you can create new domain controllers to take over the DC functionality from the current CC3 DCs when the time is ripe, and its up to you if these are just temporary placeholders while you rebuild the RM DCs as "vanilla" DCs or if you want to just put new DCs into place anyway and leave them.

    Last but by no means least, don't forget that an XP --> windows 7 migration is a complex beast in and of itself, never mind all this extra detail! The impact of having to create new software installs, validate your current software library and obtain upgrades/replacements for stuff that won't run under windows 7, the direct impact of the migration (e.g. time spent schlepping around your site rebuilding machines with the new image and testing them), user training issues, etc. is a major project in its own right.

  3. Thanks to Roberto from:

    TechMonkey (3rd June 2011)

  4. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by webman View Post
    How are you going to save money moving away from an existing CC3 network, where all licenses are still valid?
    You're right here. There's no cost saving in terms of licences in moving from CC3 to a "vanilla" XP network, if nothing else changes. You would however save the cost of a RM CAL if you combined this with moving to a much larger XP user base.

    The real potential for saving is what happens when you upgrade your network from Windows 2003/XP to 2008r2/win7 because those CC3 licences won't help you there if you go with CC4.

    Your investment in CC licenses will have been wasted.
    In economics and business decision-making, sunk costs are retrospective (past) costs that have already been incurred and cannot be recovered. Sunk costs are sometimes contrasted with prospective costs, which are future costs that may be incurred or changed if an action is taken. Both retrospective and prospective costs may be either fixed (that is, they are not dependent on the volume of economic activity, however measured) or variable (dependent on volume).

    In traditional microeconomic theory, only prospective (future) costs are relevant to an investment decision. Traditional economics proposes that an economic actor not let sunk costs influence one's decisions, because doing so would not be rationally assessing a decision exclusively on its own merits. The decision-maker may make rational decisions according to their own incentives; these incentives may dictate different decisions than would be dictated by efficiency or profitability, and this is considered an incentive problem and distinct from a sunk cost problem.


    The costs of moving to CC3 have already been accounted for. They shouldn't influence future decisions, beyond any "upgrade" reductions in CC4 licensing due to any upgrade pricing vs. fresh install pricing being taken into account when researching the price of a CC4 upgrade.

    Do you use RM support? If not, don't pay for it. Just think of all the third-party software (and your time!) needed to replicate everything you already have included with CC3.
    There is a considerable cost in going vanilla from this, but then there still is a cost to going to CC4 - retraining, etc.

    We estimate the cost to us, of going from CC3 to vanilla as part of our CC4 upgrade, as being x at the most (that assumed we purchased KACE tools for imaging, which we have now chosen not to do). Our initial estimate of the likely cost of CC4 was 2*x. RM's actual quote to do the upgrade was 3*x. As a college rather than a school we may not be a typical RM customer and we may not be typical of a lot of people here, fair enough. But the financial implications here were something we could not ignore.
    Last edited by Roberto; 3rd June 2011 at 10:30 AM.

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    Wow... thanks again for all the advice, tips and... erm... warnings!

    I have actually begun the process this week of recreating our GPO to what we would like when the transition is complete. After a few hiccups I believe we are nearly their and so begins the long process of testing, looking for loop-holes etc. I have also built a machine with software similar to what we currently have at present. I cant believe the difference in speed of both booting, logging on and general use and has definately confirmed to me we are moving in the right direction.

    I have also had a play with our SAN and having successfully configured an additional server as a host, setup a lun and attached it to the server I am now a lot calmer on that front!

    Our final really major decision is on how we are going to deploy the OS and Software. I am completely at a loss here and something I will have to do much more research in to. Initially I was drawn to RIS/WDS with individual MSI's being allocated but am now considering imaging complete network builds.

    Finally, could someone please explain the costs people are talking about when moving from CC3 to vanilla. We only use one or two bits of the RM management system, and plan to work in house on scripts etc for account creation etc. so am unsure what costs people are referring to (other than our time).

    Finally, to the people who have moved (or are in the process of moving from RM) am I right in thinking I can (in our 3 DC setup):

    • Demote server 2 as a DC
    • Wipe and Rebuild
    • Promote to DC
    • Demote server 3 as a DC
    • Wipe and Rebuild
    • Promote to DC
    • Transfer FSMO from server 1 to 2 or 3
    • Demote server 2 as a DC
    • Wipe and Rebuild
    • Promote to DC


    Thanks again,
    Michael

  6. #20

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    DOnt know if its me but WDS was a pain! should defo look at fog

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    Finally, could someone please explain the costs people are talking about when moving from CC3 to vanilla. We only use one or two bits of the RM management system, and plan to work in house on scripts etc for account creation etc. so am unsure what costs people are referring to (other than our time).
    Well the costs are replacing those things you use in the current setup. If you don't use much of CC3 (like us) then the cost to replace the functionality you use will be minimal. But one way or another, they exist.

    And don't discount the importance of the cost of your time. That's the one thing you can't really recover later if it turns out that things aren't going as smoothly as you hoped.

  8. Thanks to Roberto from:

    irsprint84 (3rd June 2011)

  9. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by Roberto View Post
    Well the costs are replacing those things you use in the current setup. If you don't use much of CC3 (like us) then the cost to replace the functionality you use will be minimal. But one way or another, they exist.

    And don't discount the importance of the cost of your time. That's the one thing you can't really recover later if it turns out that things aren't going as smoothly as you hoped.
    If I were to start something like this I would start now, 12 weeks of mostly low time in schools up to September

  10. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by irsprint84 View Post
    If I were to start something like this I would start now, 12 weeks of mostly low time in schools up to September
    We're starting now and plan to go live in september 2012, but we have a very complex set of questions to answer in our migration and not as many resources as we would like to answer them.

  11. #24
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    For imaging I would seriously look at fog.

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    For the software deployment, I'd look at WPKG as you can use your current CC3 packages when you create the xml files, and still allows the granular deployment, as well as some more snazzy options.

    For imaging, the MDT2010 was quite easy to setup, and if you use the database option within it you can enter the computers mac or uuid address so that subsequent rebuilds are more automated.

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    A very good response!

    Just recently finished shifting over an 80 machine CC network to vanilla. One of the most stressful tasks in my life so far. I tried my very best to plan everything down to a T which involved spending hours talking to people and the mirror (It works for me ), waking up at night to write down notes. All to make sure I hadn't missed anything. In the end I filled two A4 books with notes.
    I also left it for a week or two and realised I had still missed some things off
    Still, it all paid off and they are all as happy as larry

    In my opinion, its best to start with a new forest with a two way trust (Bearing in mind you may come across difficulty with cross forest roaming profiles and offline files probably along with other things too). At least you know where you stand and there won't be any possibility of odd RM Schemas or specific forest related nonsense anywhere. Its also got a psycholgical reason, starting on a clean slate and all!

  14. #27
    ccp
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    I would replicate the scenario in to a Virtual environment as both a training and research excercise.
    Just my $0.02 worth

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    ok.. I thought it time for an update!

    A lot has happened since I last posted and in brief we have decided to go ahead with part of this, starting THIS SUMMER
    We were originally planning to spend around a year planning and prepping for this and making the whole network vanilla in one summer break (2012). The more I have thought about this I dont think realistically that time would allow myself and my colleague to carry this out all in one go. As such we have planned, tested and are more or less ready to go on rolling out vanilla Windows XP to all workstations over the 6 week summer break (and have had approval from SMT). Here is the software we are planning on using:

    AD User Management: At present we are going to carry on using the RM Management console to create our users. Quite simply it does the job, it has never let us done and once it's worked its magic we can simply drop the new accounts into the correct OU.

    Workstation Imaging: We are using WDS for our desktop OS deployment which will be sending out an image of XP SP3 with the only addition being .net framework (we are sending other Windows updates out via WSUS but wanted this to be installed - for SIMs - as soon as the workstation is built). Following this Group Policy will install Display Changer (to set screen res to maximum - great little command-line program if your not already using it) and WPKG Client...

    Software Rollout: Serious thanks to whoever suggested WPKG above!!! Quite simply it is one of the best open-source programs I have come across in a long time. So simple really in what it does and how it does it but provides a great deal of flexibility in how software is distributed. Not come up against any scenarios it cant fulfil for us yet.

    Software Updates: WSUS...'nuff said

    Start Menu: A fairly long, manually written batch script but it does the job, runs in only a couple of seconds (even on older spec PC's) and provides users with a clean start-menu, only showing software installed on the machine.

    Print Management: Gone (or should I say going) for Papercut. This is virtually the last thing we have to do and configure now and shouldnt be too tricky (I think the only slight consideration is the print release terminal we need to configure for our staff room printer).

    All in all we have managed to configure a network which very much replicates RM's offering (at least the bits we use) but should (long-term) be easier to management without expensive support contracts, is much quicker to boot (particularly on older hardware) and is just as secure with appropriate software restrictions in place.

    Thanks for all the advice on here... definately has helped me decide on some of the software we have selected and I will keep this post updated (in case anyone is interested) over the summer for those who are interested enough to read.

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    with the only addition being .net framework
    That's reasonable, but if it's XP SP3 then I'd add: a) GPP update so they immediately understand 2008+ GPPs, b) IE8 because that's the end of the IE line for XP i.e. you won't be uninstalling it and putting IE9 on, c) Anything else global that satisfies the same kind of reasoning.

    Quite simply it (WPKG - Ed.) is one of the best open-source programs I have come across in a long time. So simple really in what it does
    You obviously haven't looked at the code then ;b It has been a couple of years, but I looked enough to submit a few bugfixes back to the project (was adapting it slightly) and it's actually jolly complex. The winning WPKG concept is simple though: Is-it-installed/has-it-installed checks.

  17. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by CyBeRkId2002 View Post
    Start Menu: A fairly long, manually written batch script but it does the job, runs in only a couple of seconds (even on older spec PC's) and provides users with a clean start-menu, only showing software installed on the machine.
    Hi Cyber - I'm interested in how you did this. WOuld you be willing to post your script?

    Many thanks

    Gareth

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