Microsoft Windows XP support ends April 2014. Are you ready? Migrating from XP to Windows 7 (or 8) won’t happen overnight – it’ll take a little time but the good news is it doesn’t have to cost a ton of money. Microsoft has some tried and true FREE deployment tools to help with your migration.  The key to a successful deployment is in your plan on how to leverage these tools - and that plan needs to start now to ensure you have time to migrate prior to the 2014 deadline.

In Cincinnati OH, the Cincinnati Network Professionals Association (www.cinpa.org) is organizing a one-day event on September 22nd to target Windows deployment best practices.  Join Rhonda Layfield, Microsoft MVP and experienced Windows deployment expert, to learn which tools will identify applications that may not run properly on Windows 7 (including web applications), assess your hardware to determine which machines are capable of running Windows 7 and which are not. And finish up with creating, managing and deploying your images using the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2012, Windows Deployment Service and System Center Configuration Manager.

Rhonda is not only a seasoned expert in Windows deployments of all-sizes, but she's also a very entertaining speaker - I'm sure that attendees will have an exciting day learning and engaging with Rhonda!

Event topics include:

  • Find out if your applications (and web apps) will run on Windows 7 (or 8) using the free Microsoft Application Compatibility Toolkit (ACT). 
  • The free Microsoft Assessment and Planning (MAP) tool helps you identify which of your machines can run Windows 7 (or 8) and which need to be upgraded or replaced. 
  • The free Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2012 (MDT 2012) has some new bells and whistles, including: 
    • Performing default, automated and customized network deployments 
    • Deploying from a USB stick (no network needed) 
    • Set up mini deployment shares in branch offices all linked to a “Master Deployment Share” so clients can deploy locally but you maintain control of image management. 
  • Windows Deployment Service (WDS) is a free role that comes with Microsoft Server operating systems (OSs). WDS on Server 8 deploys OSs but it’s true power lies in the functionality it provides when integrated with MDT 2012 and ConfigMgr 2012. If you decide to use WDS 8 alone you will need to know how to manage your images using the Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM) tool. 
  • Configuration Manager 2012 (ConfigMgr 2012) is the only deployment tool in this class that is not free but well worth every cent. This is the only tool that can truly deploy a Zero Touch Installation (ZTI) which deploys entire OS images with no human intervention. ZTI deployments can be networked or put on a USB stick which can be password protected and expire so no one can deploy a stale image. There are tons of options for ZTI deployments – learn the ones you need for your environment.

Meals: Lunch will be provided.

Cost: Due to the cost of organizing this event, registration is $125/attendee for CiNPA members and $150/attendee for non-CiNPA members. 

Registration: Event details and registration is available at http://cinpa20120922.eventbrite.com/

Hope to see you there!

Keith