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Windows 7 possible roll out from XP

Hi I have two servers. One email and one a database server. Both are DCs and running 2003

I have around 20 XP clients. I'm looking into the possibility of upgrading all clients to Windows 7.

I have gathered enough information on the PCs hard ware wise to confirm the they are suitable for the new OS.

How should I go about this roll out?
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APC_40
Asked:
APC_40
3 Solutions
 
Joseph DalyCommented:
There isnt a direct upgrade path from XP to windows 7 using free/native tools. So these PCs will probably need a clean OS install.

I would reccomend using the user state migration tool to backup and restore the data.
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd883247%28v=ws.10%29.aspx
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achaldaveCommented:
You have few options, since you have only 20 machines investing products like SCCM or Dell KACE wont be feasible solution for you.

You can either run in-place upgrade on your XP systems if you are upgrading to same platform i.e. 32 bit or 64 bit or create master image, backup user data, deploy image and restore user data back to the system
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee523213(v=ws.10).aspx

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/ee530017.aspx
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
Buy your Windows 8 Pro Upgrade Licenses as Volume Licenses.  This gives you re-imaging rights AND Downgrade rights AND access to download the software directly from Microsoft.  This means you DO NOT need to install Windows 8/8.1 - you have the 8 licenses, but you can install (and Microsoft provides) Windows 7.

Backup your workstations and if possible, your user profiles (use USMT as suggested above).  Or skip the backups and just buy 20 500 GB hard drives for $50 each.  It'll save a LOT of backup time and allow you to easily restore to XP if you had to - just swap the drive.

Setup a reference PC with all the software you can install and setup - UNDERSTAND - the computer name and domain information will be wiped from it before you copy it.  There may be a few apps (LogMeIn, for example, that you want to install AFTER deployment).  

Once the reference PC is setup, sysprep it and shutdown.

Now use imaging software to copy that image.

I prefer and highly recommend the built in Imaging and deployment utility, Windows Deployment Services (WDS).  It's an installable role.  If you were using 2008 or later, you could install ALL the computers in about 20-40 minutes... but in 2003, it couldn't multicast so it will take 20-40 minutes PER COMPUTER.  (time savings may be worth upgrading to a 2008 or higher server (aside from it being a good idea because 10 year old server software is not very secure and WELL PAST it's prime).

Bottom line - there are ways of doing this can be VERY, VERY fast... but since you've never done it before, they might even take longer.  And I've left out some VERY lengthy learning steps like using the ADK to customize a setup file.
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APC_40Author Commented:
Excellent  -  cheers guys.
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