By Gil Cattelain, Novell Connection Magazine – April 2011
Here’s an excerpt:
Undertaking a major desktop operating system migration is never a simple task. But if you’re looking to move your endpoints to Windows 7, you can simplify the process and minimize disruptions to your business with a smart strategy, a best practices approach, and the right migration, maintenance, security and service management tools. Such an approach begins with answering five key questions. What can I migrate to Windows 7? Will all my applications work with Windows 7? How can I easily migrate thousands of my machines? How do I keep my Windows 7 environment safe and up-to-date? How do I continually and effectively address service issues in my Windows 7 environment?
Developing a game plan and strategy for your migration is probably the most crucial aspect of any move to Windows 7.
Assess Your Assets
Developing a game plan and strategy for your migration is probably the most crucial aspect of any move to Windows 7. Proper planning helps ensure a faster and relatively smooth migration. That planning requires you have an accurate understanding of the state of all your assets. From a hardware standpoint you need to know which of your endpoints meet Microsoft’s published core hardware requirements for running Windows 7, which includes at minimum a 1Ghz processor for x86 and x64 platforms, 1GB RAM for x86 or 2GB RAM for x64, 16GB free disk for x86 or 20GB free disk for x64, and a DirectX 9 compatible graphics device.
Getting this detail of information for each of your endpoints can consume an enormous amount of time and effort if you don’t have the right tools. Fortunately, Novell ZENworks Asset Management can greatly simplify this otherwise complex process with its automated discovery and inventory capabilities. It performs an inventory analysis of all your endpoints, collecting detailed information on their individual hardware specifications and configurations. Using this information, it allows you to run a Windows 7 system readiness report that compares the existing specifications of those endpoints against Microsoft’s core hardware requirements for Windows 7. The report provides you an at-a-glance high-level summary of where your devices stand, as well as a detailed report of how the individual specifications of each endpoint stack up against the Windows 7 requirements.
Running the report is as simple as follows:
- Select Reports from the ZENworks console
- Click Upgrade Readiness
- Select Windows 7 Ready report (See Figure 1.)
- Choose the report criteria that meet your requirements or leave them at their default values (i.e., existing OS, memory, processor speed, etc.)
- Click Run and view the details of your report (See Figure 2.)