In order to quickly gain the benefits of Windows 10, Baylor University has been fast-tracking its migration across 8,000 PCs through a strategically scheduled process that effectively handles user settings and profiles. With that many devices on campus needing to be migrated to Windows 10, Baylor University’s IT team knew it had its work cut out for it. Baylor University recently joined Code42 for a webinar detailing their Windows 10 migration journey.
“We realized that there was a need to make the process a little bit smoother, a little bit faster,” said Mike Gonzales, assistant director of system support at Baylor University. “That’s when we started working on getting things scripted to give us the ability to migrate in a faster, more automated, consistent fashion.”
Baylor University’s migration process
One of the first steps in Baylor’s process was to ensure that the IT team could encrypt and back up their devices on pace with the speed of the Windows 10 release cadence.
Once that was established, the team decided to roll out the migration with a testing phase. After they got comfortable with the process, they were then able to migrate larger numbers of devices. They started with the devices that would have the least impact and complexity — in their case desktop computers that didn’t have third-party encrypted software installed.
It was important to keep the migration process moving along because extended support for Windows 7 ends in January 2020. So they strategically scheduled a certain number of migrations per month to meet that deadline.
Creating a consistent, scalable process has been critical for Baylor University. The goal of their process was to ensure that all users had the same positive migration experience and that the IT team could successfully and quickly migrate a large number of devices.
A quick and easy experience for users
By integrating Microsoft’s User State Migration Tool (USMT) with Code42, Baylor’s IT team developed a script that automatically recreated a user’s profile and settings so that after the migration, the device was as familiar to users as it had been previously.
“When end users log in, they see their desktop background of their kids and that’s a really good user experience,” said Brad Hodges, senior analyst programmer at Baylor.
Using cloud-based technology such as InTune or Autopilot in combination with Code42 has helped with consistency and efficiency. The team can set up 32 machines to migrate concurrently in the installation area.
Because it’s moving from Windows 7 to Windows 10, Baylor University is using a wipe-and-reload process so as not to leave behind any legacy and incompatibility issues. The process has been efficient, consistent and reliable.
“It’s a huge change for our people to go from 7 to 10,” said Gonzales. “The quicker you can get them in and out of the office so they can get back to their day, the easier an experience it is for them. The goal is to leave them in a better position than when they first started.”
Up next for Baylor University
Now that they have refined their process and made it scalable, the IT team members have been making plans to extend their migration process to their Mac devices. They are also working on a project to create a self-service model for out-of-the-box devices. Based on the new model, users can unbox their device, log in and simply run a script to configure their new device with the same settings and profiles of their previous computer.
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