School Server Setup

By s5mayernik ·

My Boss just opened a small school. He know that i am good at IT. But not servers so i need your help.

And we can't afford a IT Pro. beacause we spent so much money on the new technology.

Now, here is the school setup:

My Boss purchased 80 new bare computers for the Students and Teachers. Now I've already installed Windows Pro on all of the computers I left 3 of these computers to be blank (no OS) at the moment for your instructions.

Here is the breakdown:

My focus should be on

- File Sharing

- Internet Sharing

- Group Policy (for student PCs)

- Restrictions

- Active Directory

- Security

- Domain/Client setup

- other things that I should know

- What accessories to buy

- Mail Server

- Applications - Like Microsoft Office

I have some knowledge in Windows XP, however, not windows servers All client computers will be XP Pro Build 2600 (Sp3).

Anyway, where should I start?

Any Network Admins here that can give me some inputs about this?

The simplest or easiest way would be the best.

Thank You!

Also, Please email-me if you have any guides on setting all of this up. Please email me it in a pdf form. You can also email me if you would like to help me set it up. my email address is

PS- sorry for the bad english.

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All Answers

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Don't do it

by gechurch In reply to School Server Setup

You shouldn't be suprised by this answer... don't do it yourself. Hire someone that knows what they're doing. Trying to do the initial setup of servers and desktops for 80 staff and students by yourself when you have no server experience is totally insane.

If you try to do this yourself you will waste a lot of time and you will make all sorts of mistakes - some that cost money as well as your time - and you will eventually figure out that this is too big a project to take on yourself and will hire a pro anyway. Your boss will find the money. If he can afford to buy 80 computers and to pay the salaries of his teachers, then he can afford to get the IT that will run the whole operation set up properly.

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Reponse To Answer

by Clendanielc In reply to Don't do it

I agree with gechurch. This is a huge undertaking for someone who is not familiar with server type of environments. Here is my suggestion for the money issue. Look for the nearest University / Tech School that has a degree for Computer Science. Contact their Business Development or Career Center Department. Tell them that you are looking for a unpaid intern to help set this up.

You might be surprised that a lot of people don't care about getting paid. They want the experience when they are in school. Yes, money is nice but if you have experience under your belt by the time you graduate, you are better off than someone who doesn't have the experience. Plus if you can afford on down the road, why not hire the person who set everything up. They don't need training plus the can literally start day one.

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Get a pro

by IcebergTitanic In reply to School Server Setup

I had prepared a big response for you, but after looking at your initial post and looking at gechurch's response, I can't in good conscience give you anything more than what gechurch said. You're digging yourself an IT grave if you try to take this on without help, man. At best, you can google through it and get it running, but you run a lot of risk. Is your boss going to be sympathetic when he cannot email anyone, because you were blacklisted as spammers when you didn't secure your exchange server? Is he going to be happy when the students cannot log in one day because your domain authentication is broken? What happens when a power outage kills the entire domain? Did you buy battery backup units, and put in place a plan for a complete restore of business operations in the event of a catastrophic failure? What about antivirus software? Is your network even capable of handling 80 students at once? Did you get a business class router, or did you get a $50 linksys from the local office supply store?

Seriously, your post is like saying, "My boss bought a 747 so that we can fly all 80 of his family members to Europe. I have never flown a plane at all but I saw one on TV. Can someone give me a guide on how to fly it?"

Not trying to be mean to you, I'm just trying to explain the level of how far out of your depth you are here.

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I just want to know what "new technology" boss spent money on?

by siddman In reply to School Server Setup

Can't just jump in with buncha kids, requires plan and backup plans.
Kids will break all 80 computers and everything they can get their hands on.
Ya'll should look into some type of virtual, terminal or thin client EDU friendly solution where kids can't do anything like install stuff, hack, look at naught stuff, etc.
Also, XP should be avoided if possible. Win7 Pro is recommended.

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Great advice so far

by jcarullo In reply to School Server Setup

You've gotten outstanding advice thus far - especially the 747 analogy. Without server know-how, you are crazy to take this on. You will waste time and money. Even worse, valuable data could get lost.

I admire your spunk. However, the likely outcome is that you look bad. It will be very difficult to do otherwise. That's not an insult to you. I wouldn't want a 1st year med student performing brain surgery on me either. This is a fairly simple job for someone with the right knowledge. It's a dangerously difficult job for anyone else. Worse yet, you'll likely have numerous students who know more than you.

John C.

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To big a task for somoeone who is only "Good at IT"

by Locrian_Lyric In reply to School Server Setup

This is why we have specialization.

Unless your boss is willing to send you to classes and put the networking on hold for now, this is a project that is doomed to failure.

I admire your spirit and willingness to take on such a huge endevour, but there is no way on God's green earth that you will be able to pull this off. At best, you'll look incompetant, at worst, terminated.

Just think of how you'll have to answer the question "Why did you leave your last position"? at your next job interview.

"Well, I took on a huge project that was outside of my areas of expertese, and botched it up so badly that my boss fired me" is not a response an interviewer is looking for.

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Hoping this can help you.

by Alec Lerg In reply to School Server Setup

I guessing that you don

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Reponse To Answer

by Locrian_Lyric In reply to Hoping this can help you.
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Me Too

by a.portman In reply to School Server Setup

As someone who has been in school IT for 15 years, your boss messed up on day one. A "technology Initiative" should be roughly 1/3 hardware, 1/3 training, and 1/3 support, by dollars. Dropping a bunch of screens in front of students without staffing and support is just throwing away money.

Hire a competent IT Pro to setup your network. Make sure they document their work. Get yourself trained. Train your staff and hire some people to fix stuff.

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