average time for a workstation install?

OnsiteSupport used Ask the Experts™
I have to say I'm embarrassed to be asking this. what do most of you charge in labor hours to install a W7pro desktop, office 2007,office appplications including data migration.from old compute (vista pro).  plus addition of drivers to support. a high res monitor.  

One of my customers feels that he should pay only 30 minutes labor for his install. A radiology MD who uses PACS software to view MRIs.
Best Regards
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It really depends... some charge by hour and some charge per visit..
per visit 5 years ago 80 now not sure..
It depend on which country you are in.. the best way is you call to your local pc shop and ask them how much they charge if you need them to come over to install win 7 for you.. then you will know the std price..
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Most Valuable Expert 2015
30 minutes is out of the Question. The installation of Windows 7 alone, without any additional software can take more than 30 minutes (depending on the hardware). The software then takes more time, but also this depends on the speed of the hardware, and on the number of different software (there probably isn't just Office, but also AntiVirus and further software). This is probably the easy and fast part of the installation, though, as you can usually do other things while waiting. Also don't forget all the microsoft (and other) updates, which also take time.

The migration of data from the old system is a totally different issue though. First it depends on what system you are migrating from, can you just copy the data, or are there other things to take into account. This will usually take hours, and lots of that time you can't do other things simultaneously.

Besides all that, you will probably want to change default settings, make the desktop look and act better than what is the default, setup users profiles properly etc. All that takes hands on time. Then it will need time for making sure everything works like it should.

If this is for several PC's, then you can probably reduce the labor needed for each individual PC significantly, but for one PC alone you'll probably be working on it for a day or more (depending on the complexity).

This isn't a standard installation, but rather something tailored to the client, and that always takes a lot of time.


Right on. Thank you.  I am billing customer for 3.5 hours and he ia comparing this install to that of a remote office install (single computer)  that RDPs into the main office.

thanks for the input.
Full office installs can often take 6+ hours.  Which is why I usually will build a deployment image for an office using sysprep.  That cuts the install time down to like 1/4 on any additional installs or RE-installs when someone decides to click where they shouldn't.

People don't realize how much work there is in migrating and it seems nobody wants to pay for the time.  It's always a good idea to explain this to them before starting and get them to approve the work ahead of time.

If you're installing more than one machine you should really look in to sysprep and get your installation media on a high speed USB drive if at all possible.  CD installs will make your installs take forever.

Even with sysprep and a workstation with SSD storage you'd be looking at a lot more than half an hour without migrating data.

You never know if the drive with the original data is even stable.  You might start copying the data and then run into problems.  Migration can turn into a giant nightmare.  If the old machine didn't have problems, it's likely they wouldn't be buying a new one.

One thing you might offer is to let the client migrate their own data after you install their new workstation.  Then the client doesn't have to pay for that part though they'd still be paying for a lot more than 30min.
Andy MIT Systems Manager
It's very difficult to say exactly how long it would take due to the variables (equipment speed, amount of data to transfer, method of transfer, speed of internet line for updates/downloading software, etc). I wouldn't usually charge per-time for installs, more of a charge for the job (agreeing exactly what state the PC needs to be in when the job is classed as finished beforehand).
Joe WinogradDeveloper
Fellow 2017
Most Valuable Expert 2018

In terms of number of hours, I have nothing to add to the comments posted, which, for the most part, are spot-on, imo. But as an onsite support consultant, you may find this article interesting:

Regards, Joe
3 hours base setup for a new system (OS install updates / office) data transfer and customer apps billed by the hour on site as you can't accurately estimate data transfer / software install data/ export import etc.
Top Expert 2009

I've requested that this question be deleted for the following reason:

Not enough information to confirm an answer.
Most Valuable Expert 2015

There is plenty of info given.


sorry everyone. plenty of response.


I thanks all for your comments

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