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Windows 95 rollout

Posted on 1997-01-09
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Last Modified: 2013-12-16
The assignment is to rollout windows 95 to about 1000 workstations.  I would like to set up one workstation as my "template" and copy the hard drive "image" to a server.

Using a windows 95 boot diskette I'd like to boot up a workstation, connect to the server, and copy the the hard drive image from the server to the workstation hard drive.  I realize I will have some intervention required afterward i.e. changing the computer name for the network.

Please note that these are not upgrades being performed, the workstations will be cleaned and reformatted. I will also be copying the cab files locally for easy accessibility to account for some systems that may not exactly match my "template".  

What I'd like to know is if you or anyone you know of has experience with this to offer advice or product information that may help.

And do you know of any copy utility that will work with windows 95 in DOS mode that retains long file names.  We have tried to accomplish this but XCOPY32 doesn't seem to work when windows 95 is in DOS mode.

I realize there are some setup features within windows 95 including the new preinstallation wizard but I think that what I'm trying to achieve is a faster method than having each workstation run through the install proceedure.

Thanks

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Question by:michaelq
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jonhassell earned 100 total points
ID: 1744073
You're right.  It would take a long time to run the Wizard on 1000 workstations.

I have set up a 10-computer network using the following methods (please note that all were running Win95 and the configurations on each of the machines are exactly the same.)

To solve the problem of the different configurations, setup Windows 95 on each type of workstation and optimize it until the configuration is exactly the way you want it.  Then, search on the web for a Disk Imaging program.  XCOPY will copy everything but the swap file, so you will have to create a new one on each workstation or run a batch command that will do it for you.  Then, reformat each of your WS hard drives.  On your boot disk for Windows, make sure that you have drivers and initialization files for your network card so you can connect.  Also include the disk image program if it will fit.  If not, copy it to the server and have it copy to the WS before you begin the installation procedure.  Once you have connected, install Windows.  LFNBACKUP is a Microsoft-supplied program that backs up long file names for use to restore them later in situtations such as yours.  Experiment with it first before rolling it out on a large scale.  

Here is a list of things I would look for after installing Windows--

*swap file optimization
*workstation network setting
*updated clients for Netware, NT, or other
*static drive mapping configuration
*application installs well

If you have any questions, let me know.  It worked for me on my network.  I just copied the CAB files to a computer, connected to it, and ran the wizard from the WS connected to the server.  There is a push installation feature, however, that will let you accomplish what you need to do.  My e-mail address is jonhassell@aol.com.  Hope this helps you.   JGH
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Expert Comment

by:geno040197
ID: 1744074
I have found a great utility to do multiple installs.  The image will contain the OS AND ANY APPLICATIONS you wish to install on the PC.  It's called GHOST and can be found at http://www.ghostsoft.com

This utility can be automated to a point where you put a disk in, enter a valid user name and password and the image will be flushed from the server to the PC.
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