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  • 10 Computers, Installing XP

    Howdy,

    I'm looking for some suggestions on the fastest/easiest way to Install XP Pro SP2 onto 10 new computers, and also include things like Adobe Reader, Office, Anti-virus, patches/hotfixes, etc. etc. quickly.

    I dont want to have to sit infront of each one and do it manually, that would take a really long time, and these are going to be connected to a domain running Windows Server 2003 if that matters. Any suggestions on programs or other methods that can be used to accomplish this would be great.

    Thanks,

    Tyler

  • #2
    Re: 10 Computers, Installing XP

    For the OS installation, you could create the unattended installation script so all you would need to do is pop the CD into the drive and let the workstation boot from the CD and take a 45-60 min coffee break before moving onto the next one.

    For the Office deployment, I assume you mean Office 2003 (Actually the process for 2000 and 2003 and very much the same). There are at least 2 different methods of deploying them on the workstations automagically.
    One method is by using the Software installation method via GPO. The other is via scripts and an Administrative Install Point. Have a look at http://support.microsoft.com/kb/828377/en-us for the supported installation methods for deploying Office 2003.

    For distributing Windows, Office XP, Office 2003, Exchange, MS SQL patches and/or hotfixes - give Windows Server Update Services (http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserv...s/default.mspx) a try. I'm using it and I find it great. I have a Word document containing a "walkthough guide" for the installation I did. If you would like to have a copy of it to help if you decide to use WSUS, let me know.
    It's a fairly simple installation if you know where the potholes are and is not difficult.

    For the deployment of the Anti-virus program - we're using Symantec Antivirus Corporate Edition in managed mode. From the Symantec System Center MMC you can deploy the Symantec Antivirus program to all of the workstations from a central location. The alternative method is to distribute it via Software installation method via GPO. Browse through their Knowledge base for details (http://service1.symantec.com/SUPPORT...ype=&seg=#16); its fairly comprehensive and good and has answered my problems and queries.

    I know Norman Antivirus has a similar method to Symantec, not sure about how the rest of anti-virus vendors would do it.

    Adobe products - don't get me started! I wish that Adobe would provide tools to make it easier to distribute their products in a corporate environment. It you find a good easy solution to this one, please do let me know.

    Usually I find the software installation via GPO quiet nice as it really simplifies the setup process and standardization of software installation on the network, especially if you bring in a new workstation or reinstall a workstation.

    Let me know if you have any further queries!

    James

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    • #3
      Re: 10 Computers, Installing XP

      For things that don't work with GPO's and other common installation methods you should try InstallRite - http://www.epsilonsquared.com/

      I've used it on an install of 200 PC's and only failed on 1

      It installed Office, patches, IE customisations and Adobe stuff really quickly!

      ...Spence

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: 10 Computers, Installing XP

        If those 10 machines have identical hardware, just install XP + all your updates and programs on one machine, make a drive image, and copy it to the other machines.

        You may need to change things like activation keys and SIDs after installation.
        Last edited by 666; 13th January 2006, 02:28. Reason: typo
        make xp behave:

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: 10 Computers, Installing XP

          If those 10 machines have identical hardware, just install XP + all your updates and programs on one machine, make a drive image, and copy it to the other machines.

          You may need to change things like activation keys and SIDs after installation.
          All of which i hear can be removed with Sysprep (although i havent tried it). Additionally most imaging software i've seen costs so much money that you only see benefits when using it on like 50+ machines with some kind of bulk licensing.

          Has anyone found cheap imaging software thats good or used sysprep in conjunction with it? I'd like to hear whats involved... as far as how you accomplish stripping out the SID, and naming each computer differently, and adding unique XP keys for example.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: 10 Computers, Installing XP

            Originally posted by Tyl0r
            Has anyone found cheap imaging software
            http://www.runtime.org/dixml.htm

            Its compression is not as efficient as Acronis TI, but you can't beat the price. It's free.
            make xp behave:

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: 10 Computers, Installing XP

              Some info re Sysprep

              http://support.microsoft.com/default...302577&sd=tech

              Another thing. Have you ever thought about installing RIS and deploying your image via that??

              I've done it using WinPE and Ghost32 so i can't see it being that difficult.
              Last edited by wullieb1; 14th January 2006, 13:18.

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              • #8
                Re: 10 Computers, Installing XP

                Originally posted by 666
                If those 10 machines have identical hardware, just install XP + all your updates and programs on one machine, make a drive image, and copy it to the other machines.

                You may need to change things like activation keys and SIDs after installation.

                Yes, the same way what I do and also, i'm recommended this solution.
                ================================
                HND: Higher National Diploma in
                Computer Science(IT)


                Passed:
                MCSA+Security 2003, VCP3, VCP4
                Done:VMware DSA
                ================================[/COLOR]

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: 10 Computers, Installing XP

                  So I guess the real problem I'm having isn't how to image the drive or what software to use, its how you accomplish stripping out the SID, and naming each computer differently, and adding unique XP keys for example...

                  Does anyone have just an overview of how they get this to work? Say I have a DVD with a 4.5gb Image and I have a new unformatted computer sitting infront of me. What do I do from here? When/where do I use Sysprep to change the SID, Naming, and XP keys. etc?

                  Thanks for the help so far...
                  Last edited by Tyl0r; 17th January 2006, 21:51.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: 10 Computers, Installing XP

                    Better way to do is to have a HDD with all your windows and applications that you want to setup on every machine, the size might be more than 4.7 GB DVD. So, better way is the HDD in your HAND.

                    Plug in into your machine as a Primary HDD and the once which you want to copy to as a Secondary.

                    Boot from Symantech Ghost, and do the neccessary thing to accomplish your task.

                    Once Done, remove the Primary HDD and boot, you will be asked to restart due to new H/W found. Restrart and run the SID.

                    Read useful info about SID and get it from here.

                    Code:
                    http://www.sysinternals.com/Utilities/NewSid.html
                    habibalby
                    ================================
                    HND: Higher National Diploma in
                    Computer Science(IT)


                    Passed:
                    MCSA+Security 2003, VCP3, VCP4
                    Done:VMware DSA
                    ================================[/COLOR]

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: 10 Computers, Installing XP

                      Originally posted by Tyl0r
                      So I guess the real problem I'm having isn't how to image the drive or what software to use, its how you accomplish stripping out the SID, and naming each computer differently, and adding unique XP keys for example...

                      Does anyone have just an overview of how they get this to work? Say I have a DVD with a 4.5gb Image and I have a new unformatted computer sitting infront of me. What do I do from here? When/where do I use Sysprep to change the SID, Naming, and XP keys. etc?

                      Thanks for the help so far...

                      Once you have your system completed, with all applications installed and configured you would then run sysprep and allow the machine to shutdown. Once shutdown you would use the bootdisk from the supplied imaging software and create the bootdisk. Once the image has been installed on another PC it will basically run a mini setup which will ask you for informaiton, r.e. Computer Name. PID etc etc.

                      Download this and read the included manuals

                      http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/d...n&Hash=4PSS654

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: 10 Computers, Installing XP

                        Sorry to bring back an old post, but I was wondering how you made out with your install? I am thinking that I am going to be doing the same thing very soon, and I have started to research it a bit. I am just not sure if we are already going to have XP pre installed or not. Thanks....

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: 10 Computers, Installing XP

                          Originally posted by Solid
                          Sorry to bring back an old post, but I was wondering how you made out with your install? I am thinking that I am going to be doing the same thing very soon, and I have started to research it a bit. I am just not sure if we are already going to have XP pre installed or not. Thanks....

                          I have used the sysprep metohod on more than one occasion and for a few different companies and it works perfectly.

                          You can even have it that you give an end user a disk and tell them to boot from it and let the software do the work for you.

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