Image Many Office Computers at Once

Kristen Hewes - Hardware Technician

A lot of my time this week has been put to use on imaging machines, ninety or so of them. I have never really done much of this but found it not too hard at all!

I have been imaging them seven at a time using my KVM, a switch, and Ghostcast. Plug them into the KVM and boot them with your favourite boot CD (I use Hirens as it has so many tools).

Once they boot into Hirens, choose Backup tools (2), then Ghost (4), and then Ghost with network support.

From there it is as easy as choosing the image and the drive you want the image on and pressing go.  You do need to have ghostcast on your main machine, and that is a breeze to use too. Open it up and choose the image you want to clone onto the machines, give it a name, and hit send.

Network speed might be an issue in a busy office.  The longest it has taken me is 3.5 hours to image seven machines, but on days that the office is quiet it goes a lot faster!

On a side note, getting all the machines unboxed and setup, then back in the boxes when finished is quite a good workout!