Best Windows Imaging Software?

rmbrown09

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jan 25, 2010
942
0
Seattle
I know this is not exactly the place for this type of question, but here it goes anyways.


Everyday we keep getting new computers out of the earth it seems. I would like to get one setup, and then image the rest.

There will need to be 3 different sets of computers to image.

I need to get 20 Dell Latitudes imaged, 30 Dell Optiplex Desktops, and the 36 Windows 7 copies in the iMac lab.

So I have 1 Optiplex fully loaded and set to use as the mass image. Same with one copy of 7 on the iMac's. Notebooks are still in boxes.

What program will allow me to do this in the best way?? I was looking into Norton Ghost, but is there something else you guys know of or recommend?

Thanks.
 

Xombie11

macrumors regular
Nov 2, 2009
124
12
VLite or nLite are the only ones I'm aware of. Not sure if these are what you're looking for, but check them out.
 

ctyhntr

macrumors 6502
Jul 21, 2010
301
0
For Windows only machines, use Symantec Ghost. Ghost was the defacto standard in every company that I had ever worked for.

There used to be two different versions of Ghost. Symantec's Ghost (the original), and later they bought a competitor (PowerQuest) and re-named and marketed that Norton's Ghost. In terms of backwards compatibility, the two are not compatible.

Using ghost, you can create one base image customized with your software and settings. Then use Microsoft's sysprep to create different driver profiles for the Latitudes and Optiplexes. You'll end up with one image that you can deploy to either hardware.

In my last two firms, ghost's ability to re-image a machine and get a user back online and working within 30 minutes was an essential part of the company's desktop support and troubleshooting strategy. Motto when in doubt, ghost. :)

You can also looked at Acronis, it was started by the people who originally created Ghost before Symantec bought them up.
 

kny3twalker

macrumors 65816
Oct 25, 2009
1,241
0
I use Ghost and install it on anyone's computer I work on. I too have heard good things about Acronis TrueImage.
 

rmbrown09

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jan 25, 2010
942
0
Seattle
Ended up grabbing Achronis, and it has been working great. Burned a bootable media disk, and then have the system image on our network drive. Achronis allows for FTP access to get to backup files. :)
 

ctyhntr

macrumors 6502
Jul 21, 2010
301
0
BigJobby brought up a good point.

Google Symantec Ghost and Microsoft Sysprep for base image checklist and best practice.

If you're using Microsoft's sysprep process, you can script to generate a random name, usually starts off with a static prefix and dynamic numbers; custom prefix-12345. Or fix it later with a vbscript or compiled exe program to rename the computer and join the domain of your choice.

don't forget to locally rename your machines after laying down the image... but you already knew that anyway.
 
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