Hi people,

Well I can't tell you how glad I am to have found a website like this with people in the same boat regarding imaging and installing software without user input!

Our firm has nothing in place with imaging so every time a new computer comes I do it from scratch which can take up to 4 hours with all the software I have to install.

So my first question is really what software should I use to achieve the following?

1) I would like to create an image of the O/S and all the major applications we use as a company.
2) I would also like to be able to give the new pc installation the computer name and if possible the new user name that the computer will belong too.

Or am I meant to create the image with the administrator settings and then when I install the image create the user profile seperatly?

I am sorry if I am asking basic questions but as I say this is a whole new area and I really want to push the company into this as it will save hours and hours of time. Also I need something in place by end of March as I have 20 new computers coming.

Your help is much appreciated.

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wow, 4 hours per machine? thats rough. haha

I would have your company purchase a copy of symantec ghost. You would need to use something like sysprep so you dont have duplicated SIDS on your network. Read up on sysprep, you will be able to name it during the minisetup process if you configure the inf file correctly.
Answered 02/05/2007 by: bleedingheartliberal
Senior Yellow Belt

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Thanks will do.

Probably more then 4 hours actually, with all the configuration of the individual software plus doing all the office, windows updates ! Yawn
Answered 02/06/2007 by: ITNewbie
Yellow Belt

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Sounds familiar. A ground-up install of a pc here is about 4 hours as well (lots of accounting apps)

Here's what I do to automate things.
Take a factory installed system (Dell notebooks usually, with OEM XP, and Office SB) Do all Windows updates, office updates, and Windows cutomization, don't run Office, as it will ask for the serial number. Yes we should be using VLM for Office, but Dell's price can't be beat.
Install and configure all applications, printers etc.
Put a copy of newsid.exe from sysinternals on the C: drive.

Make an image using Ghost to a network share.

On a new Computer, ghost the computer from the image on the network share.
Reboot, and change the SID to a random SID with newsid. (We don't do Sysprep, cause it messes up the OEM XP activation, I'm open to suggestions here :) )
Log in, rename the computer, jion the domain , run Office, enter the serial number, activate it. Do any per-user customization, and you're done.
Answered 02/06/2007 by: smason
Orange Belt

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The company I work at was using Ghost but was not using Sysprep so we had tons of seperate images. Now we are using sysprep and have 6 main images, 1 for each department plus a laptop image. I am just now starting to fine tune the process. You'll find some great guides and information here on setting up your own Sysprep setup.

I came across this guide when I first started learning Sysprep and it helped me quite a bit! Here is a second guide that I found useful. Also if you do decide to use Sysprep and Ghost here is a tool to save some time writing the location of your drivers.

Sysprep Driver Scanner Tool

Hope this helps!
Answered 03/05/2007 by: windmiller
Senior Yellow Belt

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