Login    Forum    Search    FAQ

Board index » Upgrading and Repairing Forum » Scott's Tips




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 8 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Make Software Installs/Reinstalls a Breeze!
 Post Posted: Thu Aug 23, 2007 5:48 pm 
Offline
Site Admin

Joined: Sun Feb 04, 2007 11:44 am
Posts: 5880
Whenever I acquire new software, I copy the installation files and/or an
image of the installation disc(s) to a shared drive (network or USB). Then
from that point on I install or reinstall the software from the shared drive
rather than the original media.

If the software is on a CD/DVD (MS Office for example), I image the disc
(create an ISO image file) and store the ISO on my shared network drive. If
the software requires a product key then I also create a text file containing
the key, and store it alongside the ISO with the same name except for a
.key.txt extension. If you don't have a CD/DVD burning application that can
create ISO files, then I recommend ImgBurn: http://www.imgburn.com

From that point on, when I need to install or reinstall the software, rather
than having to hunt down the original disc, I merely install the Daemon Tools
http://www.daemon-tools.cc disc emulator and use it to mount the ISO image,
which Daemon Tools uses to emulate a physical CD/DVD drive with that disc
inserted. Besides being entirely convenient, it actually works faster than
having the physical disc in a local drive.

For software that allows a limited number of installs (i.e. MS Office Student
and Teacher Edition 2003, which allows 3 active installs) I make a note in
the .key.txt file every time I install or uninstall the software on a system,
thus allowing for easy tracking of usage vs. licensing requirements.

The files and images can also be stored on an external USB hard drive for the
same basic functionality if the systems aren't networked or a network shared
drive is not available. Also note that the programs I recommend to make the
ISOs (ImgBurn) as well as to use the ISOs for installation (Daemon Tools) are
both free.

This technique allows me to install or reinstall all of the software I use on
any system quickly and efficiently, without ever needing the physical discs.
In fact the systems don't even need an optical drive, or for example I can
install DVD based software on older systems that only have CD drives.

Overall this technique makes installing applications on new systems a breeze!
Scott.


Top 
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Make Software Installs/Reinstalls a Breeze!
 Post Posted: Sun Jun 15, 2008 11:00 am 
Offline

Joined: Sun May 20, 2007 12:53 pm
Posts: 10
What about a clean install of Windows?

Surely you still need the original (phyisal) disc in the the case of win 2000/XP/Vista?

If not, how do you do it?


Top 
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Make Software Installs/Reinstalls a Breeze!
 Post Posted: Sun Jun 15, 2008 11:12 pm 
Offline
Site Admin

Joined: Sun Feb 04, 2007 11:44 am
Posts: 5880
Just as with any software that comes on a CD or DVD, once I image the original source disc (create the ISO), I never need to see it again. With software that must install from a bootable disc (such as an OS), I merely burn a new disc whenever I need to do an install. Since I install Windows so often on both personal and client systems, I burn custom install discs that have all of the current updates fully integrated (i.e. XP SP3 plus all updates since), more than 50 of what I consider essential freeware tools and applications, large numbers of additional drivers, plus custom Windows registry tweaks and other settings I've refined over the years. These discs are also scripted to run unattended, that is virtually no user input is required during the process. Basically, the installation is such that I only have to manually select the destination drive and partition for the installation (hit a few keystrokes), then walk away. When I return about 30 to 45 minutes later, the install is finished and the system displays the Windows desktop, with no need for further updates, drivers, common or essential application installs, custom settings, tweaks, etc., as those are ALREADY installed. Needless to say, this saves *hours* of work for each installation I perform.

As new Windows and application updates appear, I refresh my installation source, so it is always up to date and ready for deployment. When I am ready to do an install, I create the custom ISO from my current source, burn it to a physical disc, then use that disc to install. I normally use a DVD+RW, so I can re-use the same physical disc over and over again without wasting discs. For testing purposes, I never even need to burn the physical disc, I merely install directly from the ISO to a virtual machine using Virtual PC 2007.

The tools I recommend for creating custom Windows install images (and discs from those images) are nLite http://nliteos.com (XP), vLite http://vlite.net (Vista), and the BTS DriverPacks http://driverpacks.net (XP). For XP I also use the RyanVM Integrator and UpdatePacks http://www.ryanvm.net/msfn along with a series of scripts I've written myself.

While there can be a learning curve in getting started making custom and/or unattended OS install discs, if you install Windows on more than just one or two systems each year, the up front time investment pays off on the back end. As for myself, I easily perform 100 or more Windows installs every year, so the time savings payoff is huge. Scott.


Top 
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Make Software Installs/Reinstalls a Breeze!
 Post Posted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 6:15 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 7:44 pm
Posts: 358
Location: Bellevue, WA, USA
Scott, will the new edition of Upgrading and Repairing Windows have detailed information on how to do this?


Top 
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Make Software Installs/Reinstalls a Breeze!
 Post Posted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 8:01 pm 
Offline
Site Admin

Joined: Sun Feb 04, 2007 11:44 am
Posts: 5880
Yes indeed, in fact it is covered in detail on the included DVD! Thanks for asking, Scott.


Top 
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Make Software Installs/Reinstalls a Breeze!
 Post Posted: Mon Jun 30, 2008 11:24 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 7:44 pm
Posts: 358
Location: Bellevue, WA, USA
Great! I already have the book pre-ordered at Amazon


Top 
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Make Software Installs/Reinstalls a Breeze!
 Post Posted: Wed Mar 11, 2009 12:03 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Feb 06, 2008 9:35 am
Posts: 4
Location: L.I.,NY
>will the new edition of Upgrading and Repairing Windows

Does this refer to Edition #19 ?

Apology in Advance , and Thanks , too !


Top 
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Make Software Installs/Reinstalls a Breeze!
 Post Posted: Wed Mar 11, 2009 7:15 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Jul 20, 2008 10:50 am
Posts: 508
Location: Phoenix, AZ, USA
TMny55 wrote:
>will the new edition of Upgrading and Repairing Windows

Does this refer to Edition #19 ?


No. It refers to "Upgrading and Repairing Microsoft Windows," 2nd Ed.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/078973 ... elsupgr-20


Top 
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
 
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 8 posts ] 

Board index » Upgrading and Repairing Forum » Scott's Tips


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

 
 

 
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron