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Windows Thread, Minimising student logon times in Technical; I am looking to see what people have found best for the unique school environment where you have hundreds of ...
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    Minimising student logon times

    I am looking to see what people have found best for the unique school environment where you have hundreds of users logging on/off at the same time several times a day and specifically at profiles.

    Testing last year found that on a 7 PC the initial logon from password to ready-to-go varied between 40-50 seconds for roaming/mandatory/local all with folder redirection and subsequent logons around the 11-15 second mark if the profile existed under Users. The folder redirection only does Documents. Interestingly taking folder redirection to the maximum options available (2008 domain) the initial logon time came down to the 11-15 second mark. However hundreds of users all hitting the same server for everything did not appeal.

    So we used a 4MB mandatory profile (not super at this stage) on a teamed NIC server dedicated to storing Documents for folder redirection and the profile. Our 7 boxes are frozen with Deep Freeze which means users must do the initial logon each time (and the extra 30 second delay). The server does not come close to being stressed on either the CPU/Memory/Disk or Network. Some users log on within the 50 seconds to 1 minute, but a few always seem to hit the 1-5 minute logons.

    What are other people doing for student computers in regards to profile selection and setup and what times are you getting from the password being entered up to ready-to-go? Is there a way to beat that initial logon delay?

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    bossman's Avatar
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    @_Adam_:

    Using roaming profiles with just home folder redirection and mapping of shared drive on RM CC3 network:

    New profile on workstation login time 35 secs.
    Cached profile, login time between 5 and 10secs.

    350 workstations lowest spec pentium4 3.0Ghz plus 2 Gb Ram.

    Workstation OS XP pro
    Server OS windows Server 2000 SP4

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    danrhodes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bossman View Post
    @_Adam_:

    Using roaming profiles with just home folder redirection and mapping of shared drive on RM CC3 network:

    New profile on workstation login time 35 secs.
    Cached profile, login time between 5 and 10secs.

    350 workstations lowest spec pentium4 3.0Ghz plus 2 Gb Ram.

    Workstation OS XP pro
    Server OS windows Server 2000 SP4
    Tiny mandatory profiles FTW every time. Our logons are about 5 seconds even for a new profile pull down as everything is redirected, inc the start menu, desktop, app data, the lot.

    D

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    maniac's Avatar
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    Super Mandatory profiles here, and my login times are around 30-50 seconds depending on the age of the machine. I don't let cached profiles build up on the machines, keeps everything working better.

    We don't re-direct app data, as we find it causes all sorts of problems, but we re-direct start menus, and desktops to local folders on the machine, and My Documents to the students network share.

    I've always set a target time of 1 minute for login, I think that's acceptable in most circumstances.

    Mike.

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    danrhodes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maniac View Post

    I've always set a target time of 1 minute for login, I think that's acceptable in most circumstances.

    Mike.
    Yeah anything under 1 minute seems a acceptable time at busy periods in my eyes. were lucky we log on almost instantly, but our machines are rather new, with the excetion of some rooms that have been known to take a few minutes.

    D

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    Jamo's Avatar
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    Wow our CC3 logons vary hugely. Seems to be very much related to HDD + RAM speed as some of our older machines are over 5 mins still. Our awesome laptops for teachers (1.7celerons + 256 RAM) border on the 20 minute mark!!

    Even on the new machines the HDD thrashes for a good 30 secs on the initial logon. Subsequent logons are similar to yours though, 10 - 15 seconds.

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    Mr.Ben's Avatar
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    How about start up times?

    My login time is around 10 seconds (25 for staff that have laptops)

    I refresh GPO's every 8 hours, so when a PC is rebooted it can take 3-5minutes to be ready, even though it has been told to process 'asyncronously'

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    Login time is around 2 minutes, however I have everything redirected (apart from desktop)

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    danrhodes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jamo View Post
    Our awesome laptops for teachers (1.7celerons + 256 RAM) border on the 20 minute mark!!

    Do you not get barraged with complaints about this, surely this eats into the start of their lesson?

    D

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    Jamo's Avatar
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    They dont use them for lessons any more, I would put more RAM in them but its not up to me

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    Thank you for the replies, it appears an initial logon between 45 sec to 1 min is acceptable on older hardware (I don't bother checking on the newest PCs as it's not the ones teachers complain about).

    @danrhodes - if you redirect everything (which I said in the OP was our fastest result) how are you going for storage space? Or do you have tight quotas?

    If it helps anyone I discovered Offline files were syncing despite GP telling it not to, so over time the logon times have increased and even more so for students who download lots of videos, etc. On old hardware this sync was killing them.

    A colleague looked into it further and we suspect a couple of restarts are required for the policy to take effect and with Deep Freeze the machines only had one. Testing to come on this theory.

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    danrhodes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by _Adam_ View Post

    @danrhodes - if you redirect everything (which I said in the OP was our fastest result) how are you going for storage space? Or do you have tight quotas?
    Storage space is a constant battle, our backup has grown 200GB in a few months. We have just installed a new Fujitsu Eternus to cope with demand. Hopefull this will keep us going a while!

    D

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    less than 10 seconds Mandatory profile with redirected documents

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    As others. Mandatory profile (1Mb... I made sure its small) with redirected My Documents, Desktop, Start Menu...

    Staff are on Roaming profiles and are altogether more problematic; caused by growing profile sizes. Script that auto deletes cookies helps

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    I've managed to get login times for all users down to about 10 seconds. I use local profiles for everyone. Redirecting MyDocs, Desktop, Cookies, Favourites, and using 'Rich Profile' to create an outlook mail profile. Printers are created using 'pushprinterconnections.exe' so I can ensure users have printers installed based on the computer OU.

    I've been battling with logon times for an age and seem to have finally got it down using the above method. The cookies and fav redirection requires a non Microsoft gp template.



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