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876 posts

Ultimate Geek

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# 240324 2-Sep-2018 10:14
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I am looking for a way to reload a fresh image of Windows on startup.
Maybe a Windows Live option? I don't want to go down the Linux Live option.
Alternatively I will just reload a clone image when severe problems crop up.

 

Initially I got roped in to reconnect a network printer which was fine.
I noticed that two of the Windows 7 PCs (7 year old) were a bit sluggish...
Don't know the history of the hand-me-downs...

 

Offered to give the PCs a dung out (not factory reset yet)... Good speed and response obtained...

 

Within 48 hours a young daughter of one on the adults downloaded stuff and reduced one of the PCs to a crawl...
Did a restore and all appears to be running well again.

 

Thinking of upgrading the PCs to Windows 10...
The hardware looks like it will meet the minimum requirements.

 

All being done on a shoe-string budget and my voluntary help.

 

Any ideas?.... Thanks.

 

 





Gordy


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1730 posts

Uber Geek


  # 2082683 2-Sep-2018 10:21
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Possibly use VMs?  By using something like virtual box https://www.virtualbox.org/ , you can creat a clean clone of the configuration you want to use.  If this gets corrupted, just delete it and start with a fresh copy.  You'll need some way to ensure the users only use the VM, not the underlying system




876 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  # 2082690 2-Sep-2018 10:29
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shk292:

 

Possibly use VMs?  By using something like virtual box https://www.virtualbox.org/ , you can creat a clean clone of the configuration you want to use.  If this gets corrupted, just delete it and start with a fresh copy.  You'll need some way to ensure the users only use the VM, not the underlying system

 

 

I don't think the machines will have enough grunt to run a virtual image.

 

I think there is a 20+ year old guy that attends the class... looks like he might be a bit of a tinkerer with the PCs.

 

As I get the existing PCs running ok, more crippled PCs are coming out of cupboards....

 

Not sure how big the whole exercise is going to get :-)

 

 

 

 





Gordy


 
 
 
 


3292 posts

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  # 2082692 2-Sep-2018 10:34
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Sounds like you need to lock the computers down to stop cr4p being loaded onto them and restrict who has admin privileges.

 

Also I'd be inclined to to make a copy of the install using something like Macrium Reflect. Put this copy on a partition on the hard drive and have a routine that reloads this at a fixed time each day (sometime during the night). This will avoid slowing things down at start up and should ensure control over what stays on the device..

 

Put all thing like documents on a separate partition or make them use an external drive to store them on.

 

Edit: Having a copy of the OS should make it quicker and easier to restore other devices you get given to deal with.

 

 





Sony Xperia X running Sailfish OS. https://sailfishos.org The true independent open source mobile OS 
Samsung Galaxy Tab S3
Nokia N1
Dell Inspiron 14z i5


2130 posts

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  # 2082700 2-Sep-2018 10:51
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Is this something PXE boot can solve?

One locked up and locked down server with boot image(s). You'd want some pretty good networking on site though.




Location: Dunedin

 




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Ultimate Geek

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  # 2082706 2-Sep-2018 11:08
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Technofreak:

 

Sounds like you need to lock the computers down to stop cr4p being loaded onto them and restrict who has admin privileges.

 

Also I'd be inclined to to make a copy of the install using something like Macrium Reflect. Put this copy on a partition on the hard drive and have a routine that reloads this at a fixed time each day (sometime during the night). This will avoid slowing things down at start up and should ensure control over what stays on the device..

 

Put all thing like documents on a separate partition or make them use an external drive to store them on.

 

Edit: Having a copy of the OS should make it quicker and easier to restore other devices you get given to deal with.

 

 

 

 

Computers are now locked down with Admin Login/Password and Student as standard user... no admin rights.

 

My next move is to clone the drives with Macrium Reflect... Just looking at the command line options now.

 

Guess I might have to create a batch or script file to run MR in timed option.

 

The hard drives are big enough to create a few partitions.

 

If I can get all the machines on to Win 10 then a reload off a USB stick would be pretty easy.

 

 

 

 





Gordy




876 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  # 2082707 2-Sep-2018 11:12
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andrewNZ: Is this something PXE boot can solve?

One locked up and locked down server with boot image(s). You'd want some pretty good networking on site though.

 

 

 

I have never looked into PXE boot...

 

Google search: Short for Pre-Boot Execution Environment. Pronounced pixie, PXE is one of the components of Intel's WfM specification. It allows a workstation to boot from a server on a network prior to booting the operating system on the local hard drive.

 

I might have to consider donating an old NAS I have to the class...

 

 

 

 





Gordy




876 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  # 2082708 2-Sep-2018 11:16
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From my earlier post...

 

I think there is a 20+ year old guy that attends the class... looks like he might be a bit of a tinkerer with the PCs.

 

I am thinking that maybe this guy needs a dedicated PC to tinker with... All part of the adult education options I guess...

 

 





Gordy


 
 
 
 


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  # 2082712 2-Sep-2018 11:44
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Take a look at Reboot Restore https://horizondatasys.com/reboot-restore-rx-freeware/

 

I haven't personally used this product but I have used a similar product (Deep-Freeze) back with Window XP in a high school.

 

 

 

There are downsides to this as Virus protection / any updates are rolled back every time the system is restarted.

 

 

 

 


gzt

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  # 2082720 2-Sep-2018 12:20
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Gordy7:

Technofreak:


Sounds like you need to lock the computers down to stop cr4p being loaded onto them and restrict who has admin privileges.


Also I'd be inclined to to make a copy of the install using something like Macrium Reflect. Put this copy on a partition on the hard drive and have a routine that reloads this at a fixed time each day (sometime during the night). This will avoid slowing things down at start up and should ensure control over what stays on the device..


Put all thing like documents on a separate partition or make them use an external drive to store them on.


Edit: Having a copy of the OS should make it quicker and easier to restore other devices you get given to deal with.



Computers are now locked down with Admin Login/Password and Student as standard user... no admin rights.


My next move is to clone the drives with Macrium Reflect... Just looking at the command line options now.


Guess I might have to create a batch or script file to run MR in timed option.


The hard drives are big enough to create a few partitions.


If I can get all the machines on to Win 10 then a reload off a USB stick would be pretty easy.



Locking down may not be suitable for some of the classes and restrict students unnecessarily. I'd regard that as an interim option until you select a different solution.

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  # 2082722 2-Sep-2018 12:29
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Andib:

 

Take a look at Reboot Restore https://horizondatasys.com/reboot-restore-rx-freeware/

 

I haven't personally used this product but I have used a similar product (Deep-Freeze) back with Window XP in a high school.

 

 

 

There are downsides to this as Virus protection / any updates are rolled back every time the system is restarted.

 

 

This is where using something like Macruim Reflect is a better option. The new image already contains the updates.





Sony Xperia X running Sailfish OS. https://sailfishos.org The true independent open source mobile OS 
Samsung Galaxy Tab S3
Nokia N1
Dell Inspiron 14z i5


1906 posts

Uber Geek


  # 2082733 2-Sep-2018 12:50
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PXE boot with Deployment Services.  

 

That way you simply press F12 upon boot to freshen any PC.  Disable the PXE server/DHCP entry when not needed to prevent anyone unexpectedly wiping their machine because it failed to boot too many times or they had a USB stick in a machine that tried and failed to boot and fell back to PXE cause it was miss-configured ...

 

Make sure you use and stick with a popular brand and model of PC that's available in the 100's from your supplier where newer models haven't changed much from previous.

 

Locking down your PC's is all fun and games until you get a visit from a certain Westpac team :p


3356 posts

Uber Geek


  # 2082753 2-Sep-2018 13:59
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PXE boot with Deployment Services.  

 

That way you simply press F12 upon boot to freshen any PC.  Disable the PXE server/DHCP entry when not needed to prevent anyone unexpectedly wiping their machine because it failed to boot too many times or they had a USB stick in a machine that tried and failed to boot and fell back to PXE cause it was miss-configured ...

 

 

You thinking same as me? Sounds like a job for MDT :)

 

I recently had to build a PE boot disk that could read an older Checkpoint encryption decrypt tool. PE3 wouldn't see the newer SATA hardware on Dells despite attempts to update the embedded drivers. Merge the tool into a 10PE and it goes on heaps more platforms. Pleasantly surprised how much the latest PE can not only work but interrogate the HW and fulfil any driver integration scripting.

 

Good work wanting to do something about it though. This is how the stories like the recent cryptohijack come about.

 

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sccm/mdt/use-the-mdt  


1402 posts

Uber Geek


  # 2082774 2-Sep-2018 14:48
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Unless all the PC's have to be running Windows & MS Office, why not try installing a light Linux distro such as Lubuntu, Xubuntu, or Linux Lite on one of them & see how it goes? Then use Libre Office.  If networking is a problem maybe save documents onto a USB stick & print from a windows pc.




876 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  # 2082781 2-Sep-2018 15:11
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amiga500:

 

Unless all the PC's have to be running Windows & MS Office, why not try installing a light Linux distro such as Lubuntu, Xubuntu, or Linux Lite on one of them & see how it goes? Then use Libre Office.  If networking is a problem maybe save documents onto a USB stick & print from a windows pc.

 

 

I think the idea is to get the students familiar with Windows at the education centre so they can take the knowledge home...

 

I am happy with Linux but most students have very little knowledge about computers....

 

The class is more of an adult art and literacy education centre with computers tacked on...

 

 





Gordy




876 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  # 2082783 2-Sep-2018 15:15
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Oblivian:

 

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sccm/mdt/use-the-mdt  

 

 

Thanks for the pointer to MDT....

 

As I am thinking of deploying/upgrading the computers to Windows 10, I found this link... Good reading...

 

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/deployment/deploy-windows-mdt/deploy-windows-10-with-the-microsoft-deployment-toolkit

 

 





Gordy


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