How to Set Up New Windows 7 OEM PC's in Mass

September 5, 2012 at 08:31:21
Specs: Windows 7
I am a one-man band at a company with one small office (about 20 PC's), all on a domain, and several small remote offices (about 30), with PC's from 1 to 4 per, not on the domain. I have purchased several new PC's in order to start a desktop refresh process. These PC's are pre-loaded with Windows 7 OEM, we do not have volume licensing. My question is, what would be the best route to create a standard desktop build, and what would be the best way to install the wanted build? Since they are OEM, and no volume licensing, I'm assuming imaging is out of the question. I am looking for suggestions for complete user profile build, installing programs in mass, unattended mass installation, etc. Please give me some thoughts. Thank you.

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#1
September 5, 2012 at 08:48:32
Windows 7 has a very good backup plan. Make or buy the dvd's if you don't already have them. One would be a recovery dvd that can be used to boot the computer and recover the backup. The backup is a virtual machine image that could also be viewed on other systems to get files off. Generally it is used as a live state backup to some usb drive.

With only 30 it would take more time to get the build tools and create a .wim for your deployment. That even assumes the computers are all the same and you wish to fool with it.
In some OEM's if the computers are all the same, you could possibly use it authentication scheme in your favor. The image from one would or should work on all if you maybe use sysprep or just modify the issues later.


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#2
September 5, 2012 at 08:59:33
They are all the same hardware, so would it be best to try sysprep and image them? Although it may take more time to set this up than to just do the 30 I have, this is going to be a yearly process, so having an unattended install, image or something similar would eventually be an advantage.

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#3
September 5, 2012 at 11:35:24
No problem imaging OEM. We do our Dells all the time.
You may wish to consider setting up a WDS server.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/...

Answers are only as good as the information you provide.
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#4
September 5, 2012 at 12:22:04
Wanderer, problem there is Windows 7 OEM does not come with installation disks, and is not included on the drive. All you can do is make a recovery disk for that machine.

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#5
September 7, 2012 at 20:00:05
You can image one installation and afterward change the product key. OEM shouldn't matter in Win7. This will work particularly well if all the units are the same hardware. Of course, test it on one fully-backed-up machine.

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