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How do Colleges etc manage updates/software etc...

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#1 David Ashcroft

David Ashcroft

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 08:42 PM

I was wondering how IT Admins manage computers at an organization such as a college.

At our College Ive been told that the Operating System isn't stored locally on the machines, but when you boot up the computer it gets the OS from a server and loads it via the network, however if you turn the computer off, remove the network cable and turn it back on, the OS still loads, it just doesn't allow you to login to the domain for obvious reasons without the cable.

I also know that we (as students) on the network don't have roaming profiles due to HDD space issues, so we just login, have one shared drive in which we save our stuff, and when we log off and on again anything that we have changed outside of our shared drive returns back to the default settings.

So how does this work? As in, if a windows update becomes available, or if new software needs to be installed, how do they send it out to all the computers? I know its a pretty vague question, but as much details are possible is appreciated on how this is done.

Thanks in advance!

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#2 Nate15329


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Posted 06 February 2012 - 05:20 PM

By the way it sounds, your college may have already implemented Virtual Desktop Infrasturcture, where the latest OS image is stored on the servers, however an OS will need to be locally if it can boot without the network. Im assuming the OS you boot into without the network cable is the thin client OS to authenticate you to the network.

For your profile settings, those are never stored unless you have a personallized virtual desktop just for you. For a college setting, this would not be very efficient, it would be better just to use a single OS image for the entire network or different images per department based on the departments needs. This way there is only one or a few OS images to update individually than managing thousands of PC OSes.

Servers(contains OS images)(Run the OS image here) <---> ThinClient OS (local machine) (basically a Remote Desktop Client)

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