Oh man, I honestly thought this was going to be a simple one. :D
Can this be done with software like Acronis or Macrium? Or any other software?
Potentially...depending on how Acer does it OEM license on the computer...and assuming all 28 computers have the EXACT same hardware.
Generally, the things that mess up typical cloning/imaging from one computer to the next are licenses and hardware drivers.
If the hardware is all the same (i.e. identical Acer models with identical hardware), then this issue goes away.
That would only leave the licensing...both Windows and programs.
Some programs might be easy as you might be able to install the program without activating/entering the key and then at each computer after the clone enter the license key for the program for that specific computer. Other programs the require you to enter the license key as part of the install process might be tougher. At a minimum, it might force you to enter a new license key when it phones home to check the numbers of instances in use, but at worse might require you to uninstall the program and reinstall with the different key for the computer.
For Windows, some companies essentially setup the Windows licensing so that it is tied to their hardware and does not require you to enter the license key as long as it is their hardware. Dell has done this in the past. When I had to reinstall Windows on one of my old Dell computers from the provided install discs (while I have my reasons to hate Dell [long story], they were always good at providing actual Windows install discs rather than provide or make you create restore discs), I never had to enter in my activation key for Windows after re-installing Windows from the Dell Windows install disc. If Acer operates the same way, then you will likely not have any issues with Windows licensing.
Best I can suggest is experiment with two computers. Setup the first computer, then clone/image it. Then restore the clone/image to the second computer and see what problems you might encounter. To be on the safe side, make sure you have a backup of the second computer's "factory state" or recovery/install discs.
The other overall option is to use a deployment type program. Acronis has such a program called Snap Deploy 5. I have never used it, so I have no direct experience with it. It seems more aimed at huge operations (i.e. hundreds, if not thousands, of computers that need to be deployed over time) and it is not free. But, it is made for exactly what you want to do. They do offer a free trial, although I don't know what kind of limitations it might have as they don't say.http://www.acronis.com/en-us/business/enterprise-solutions/image-deployment/
FWIW, it looks like it would cost about $280 to use it to deploy your 28 computers once. Probably cheaper than paying someone to sit in front of all those computers installing programs and setting them up.
Edited by smax013, 16 August 2016 - 09:41 AM.