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Consider using an OS migration service provider. Using a migration consultant reduces costs and can ease the OS-upgrade process. Most enterprise IT departments have limited experience conducting OS migrations. Third-party consultants do many migrations and pass on to their clients the benefits of the lessons learned.
Select which new operating system is right for the systems being upgraded. Many businesses are choosing to upgrade to Windows 7 first because it presents less of a learning curve for users. Others, particularly those deploying touch-screen devices, find that it makes sense to upgrade to the new Windows. A hybrid approach with a mix of both modern operating systems works for situations with varied client systems, end-user needs and IT support demands.
Assess hardware and application readiness. Older systems running Windows XP may not be robust enough to run a newer OS or to take advantage of all the potential benefits. Combining a hardware refresh with an OS migration allows for planning and deployment of new hardware — including touch-screen devices to enable flexible mobile computing.
Also, application readiness presents its own challenges. Leveraging automation solutions such as Dell’s ChangeBASE can speed the process, and Dell’s application packaging factories test, remediate and package hundreds of applications every week.
Evaluate automation solutions. The right tools can automate the PC build process, including the base image, OS settings, applications, user data migration, domain join and encryption. Dell consultants use technologies such as Dell Automated Deployment and KACE to simplify migration. In many cases, migration can be so automated that users can self-serve.
Prepare a deployment plan. Preparedness for an OS migration entails devising a detailed plan and schedule for deployment management, logistics and staging, image management, application management, data management, user-state migration and post- deployment support. Dell Managed Deployment leverages a unique cloud-based migration management tool called Client Deployment Manager to keep migrations on track.
Train the help desk staff and end users. Organizations should address training proactively, with a plan and schedule for pre- and post- migration training. Dell Education Services offers a range of classroom, online and point-of-need solutions for training IT staff and users.
Steps for Ensuring a Smooth OS Migration
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