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Deploying Windows 7

As with any major change to I.T. infrastructure, a Windows 7 deployment needs to be planned carefully. Workgroup Technology Solutions can assist you with your migration during all three stages: planning, deployment, and post-migration.

Planning

The planning phase is arguably the most important in terms of controlling costs. All of your software applications and other infrastructure, such as servers and printers, need to be checked to make sure that they are Windows 7 compatible. This is especially true of older off-the-shelf Windows applications and Linux-based server solutions such as SME Server, many of which will require an upgrade to function correctly with Windows 7.
In terms of applications, although Windows XP Mode makes it possible to run incompatible applications on Windows 7, XP Mode is designed for use as a last resort. Therefore, upgrading your business’ software stack along with Windows itself remains, as always, the best option.
After existing infrastructure is considered, the current workstation and laptop hardware will need to be examined. Typically, if a computer is currently running Windows Vista acceptably, it will be perfectly suited for Windows 7. In the case of older machines running Windows XP, some hardware modifications may be required; in some circumstances newer computers may need to be purchased.

Deployment

In the deployment phase, Windows 7 is installed on all of your business’ computers, and then customised to suit your needs. The deployment phase must be carefully planned to ensure that everything proceeds as smoothly as possible.
Where possible, Workgroup Technology Solutions uses imaging technology to minimise downtime and effectively manage costs. This means that in most cases a single computer can be installed and customised. Windows 7 can then be rolled out to the other workstations and laptops quickly from a central point: either a network server or a USB hard drive. This cuts the deployment time significantly and allows us to spend an appropriate amount of time ensuring that Windows is customised to meet your business’ specific needs.

Post-Migration

In the early stages of use, the changes in Windows 7 can be rather frustrating for employees to become accustomed to. However, once everyone has gotten used to the changes, Windows 7 shines and is a definite improvement over Windows XP.
The role of Workgroup Technology Solutions after deployment is to act as both a proactive and reactive troubleshooting resource for your business. Immediately following the implementation, we can provide your employees with training that demonstrates the relevant differences in Windows 7 (and Office 2010 if you have upgraded Office). We can also be available on an on-call basis to resolve implementation issues and address user concerns as they arise. This service is provided using a combination of phone, email and remote assistance based support tools.

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This page last updated on 25/02/11 @ 12:07AM.

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