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Looking for management recommendations

By DE Karen ·
We're using Blue Ocean's Track-It program for hardware/software inventory and helpdesk and Norton Ghost to image new PCs. We're (finally) looking into software that will make application deployment/support a little less painful. Management is leaning toward Microsoft's SMS. Those of us who will be doing the work are leaning toward WinINSTALL (and hoping the money we save will be used for bonuses!!! ha ha ha).

Anyway, our main argument for not going with SMS is that we already have full inventory and remote control capability in our helpdesk package. Sounds like SMS would provide nothing but redundancy and yet another inventory for our over-taxed techs to manage.

Does anyone have any thoughts on this? If I'm way off base, please tell me!

TIA,
Karen

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Looking for management recommendations

by VinnyD In reply to Looking for management re ...

Many companies are leaning toward Win 2K server and active directory with Win 2K client computers.

Using Active directory you can create software policies to have software automatically installed on the W2K client computers.

Now there is a catch! The software has to be able to use the MSI install technology!

If the software does not, you have to create your own MSI install program using a program that comes on the W2K server cd.

Using SMS is for larger networks (you did not say how many pc's you are supporting).

SMS also provides a remote install capability!

Another reason for using MSI installer programs is that they are self repairing.

The user can actually delete a file and it gets installed again without having to get the cd and reinstall the programs. So no tech support or help desk call.

So if I was management in your company, this is what I would be looking for.

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Looking for management recommendations

by DE Karen In reply to Looking for management re ...

The question was auto-closed by TechRepublic

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Looking for management recommendations

by 20 + years still In reply to Looking for management re ...

There should be three basic things you should think about when you are looking at software. The main point being "what does the product do for me that I don't have the capbility to do today". If SMS does not bring added value it should not be chosen (in your case you don't seem to think it does). The second is "what are my installation, maintenance and training costs". If as administrators you feel that the WinInstall product is one where you have staff who know how to use it training time needed will be lower. Do you have the expertise. If your leaning towrds this product as administrators, examine why. Last but not least is cost, do you get value not just lower prices. Sometimes the lowest price costs you the most. These are themain issues I examine when I'm looking to purchase any type of software. If SMS provides your best value after considering the above by all means go for it, just Beware of MS bigots.

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Looking for management recommendations

by DE Karen In reply to Looking for management re ...

The question was auto-closed by TechRepublic

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Looking for management recommendations

by erikdr In reply to Looking for management re ...

Agree with most other posters. Some additional points, based on my labtests of most mentioned products:
* WinInstall 2K is nice and cute, state-of-the-art, and just does the job.
* SMS is way outdated in its present 2.0 version, and not even good in more complex MSI installs! Only SMS 2003 promises relief...
* IntelliMirror is nice, but. Main problem is not the requirement of MSI (for a W2K or XP workstations apps you will usually have it, and otherwise make a MSI .ZAP file instead of a repackaged snapshot.) Problem is the client support (only W2K and XP) and the scalability; IMirror requires that the source files are on a LOCAL server, and if you have a WAN there is no support at all for getting the files from the central site to the local fan-out points.

Have fun,

<Erik> - The Netherlands

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Looking for management recommendations

by DE Karen In reply to Looking for management re ...

The question was auto-closed by TechRepublic

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Looking for management recommendations

by DE Karen In reply to Looking for management re ...

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