Baylor University Fast-Tracks Its Windows 10 Migration with Code42

Baylor University Fast-Tracks Its Windows 10 Migration

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.”

“ 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. ”

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.

Cure for the Windows 10 Migration Migraine

Keep precious data safe during an enterprise-wide OS upgrade

One-to-one device migrations, when an IT worker spends hours migrating a device to the Windows 10 platform, aren’t fun for anyone. They drain IT’s time and money and render workers idle as they wait for their devices. More importantly, they put the company at risk for data loss.

Gartner estimates that enterprises using one-to-one migration processes for Windows 10 upgrades could spend up to $445 per device. For a large organization with 2,500 employees, that can add up to more than $1.1 million. And that’s not even counting the loss of productivity as workers wait to get their devices back from IT. Some remote employees may even need to ship their device back to headquarters for the migration, adding additional time and cost.

With 2018 shaping up to be a peak year for Windows 10 migration, how can companies avoid the cost and disruption of a large-scale institutional operating system upgrade? And how can they protect valuable company IP while doing it?

“ By using Code42’s migration solution, companies can save time and money while allowing users to control their experience. ”

Faster, easier, safer

Luckily, savvy companies are turning to user-driven migration for Windows 10. By using tools such as Code42, these organizations are making migrations more scalable and repeatable, cutting costs while keeping their data safe. Using Code42’s migration solution speeds the Windows 10 migration from three hours to 30 minutes on average.

Code42 recommends two different Windows 10 migration processes for companies, based on their needs:

  • Classroom-style migration. For organizations not ready to give up full control to users, this one-to-many process can provide a good interim step on the journey to automation. As its name suggests, in this process, IT hosts events during which multiple users bring their devices and perform the migration themselves, with IT walking them through the process. As in any classroom, if a single user has a specific issue come up during the session, the IT “teacher” can provide some one-to-one guidance while the other users are self-migrating.
  • User-driven migration. Organizations can largely eliminate IT involvement in the Windows 10 migration—the dream of many IT teams—by implementing a fully user-driven process. Using Code42’s migration solution, users simply follow instructions and get in touch with IT only when a specific issue comes up. This approach can speed migrations by 75 percent and leave IT more time to focus on critical issues. Users also benefit by remaining in control of their data and making the migration when it’s convenient for their schedules.

A migration tool that works

To make either of these options work requires the right tool: a simple, intuitive, user-friendly system. Code42 provides this through:

  • Automatic, continuous endpoint backup. Any backup solution that requires manual user activity is doomed to fail because not all users will follow the protocol. Implementing Code42 lays the foundation for a successful migration to Windows 10 because we back up every version of every file, every 15 minutes. No matter how reliable—or not—users are, their endpoint data will be safe.
  • Clear, simple instructions for users. Organizations typically have users who run the gamut of comfort with technology. Code42’s system is powerful enough to facilitate a complex migration like one from Windows 7 to Windows 10, but easy enough for even the least technically savvy employee to walk themselves through the process.
  • Access to data during migration. For certain high-profile users, not being able to access their data for even an hour during migration is unacceptable. Code42 makes it easy for users to access their most recently used files while the other files are migrating.
  • Migration of profiles and device settings. After the Windows 10 migration, users will be up and running more quickly if their device looks, feels and performs as it did before the migration. Code42 migrates device settings so users don’t have to spend precious time doing it themselves.

From dreaded to done

IT teams and users often dread the process and aftermath of an operating system upgrade. By using Code42’s migration solution, companies can save time and money while allowing users to control their experience. More critically, Code42 ensures the security of valuable endpoint data during the Windows 10 migration. IT can focus on more mission-critical tasks and users can continue doing their jobs.

Five Steps to Disarming Ransomware Attacks

You have 48 hours to send two Bitcoins to the address below or your data will be erased. Do not contact the authorities.

If you’ve seen this notice, you know the fear induced by a ransomware attack. And if you haven’t, there’s a good chance you soon will. In 2017, the number of ransomware assaults grew 250 percent in the first quarter alone, causing millions of dollars in lost productivity and lost data. Today, ransomware remains one of the top cyber threats to enterprises. Why? Here are 10 factors that make ransomware irresistible to cybercriminals—and five steps to disarming attacks.

  1. Ransomware tools are becoming more sophisticated: From malware that flies under the AV radar to brute force attacks, hackers are constantly getting better at getting in. Better encryption makes it all but impossible for victims to unlock their files without paying for the key.
  2. Phishing, sadly, still works: Phishing attacks have been going on for 30 years now, so users must be experts at spotting them by now, right? Wrong. Phishing attacks are still effective, and employees may assume that IT and security teams are keeping them safe from phishing attacks.
  3. The most vulnerable attack vector is unprotected: Without a comprehensive endpoint backup solution, an organization’s laptops and desktops are unprotected. And yet, the Code42 CTRL-Z study revealed that IT decision makers believe that 60 percent of corporate information lives on users’ laptops. If executives know this, so do cybercriminals.
  4. Human behavior creates risk: Your policies say that employees must back up their data to a shared server to keep it safe from endpoint attacks. Unfortunately, employees aren’t following your protocol, leaving endpoint data—which is more than half of enterprise data—unprotected.
  5. Anyone can launch a ransomware attack: Following the trend of the legitimate software industry, Ransomware-as-a-Service (RaaS) takes ransomware accessibility to a new level. People with little technical expertise can “rent” ransomware and create their own phishing emails.
  6. Cryptocurrency makes money laundering easy: To a cybercriminal, the risky part of ransomware is direct interaction with a victim to obtain payment. But the emergence of cryptocurrencies removes much of this risk, creating a digital layer of anonymity between the victim and extortionist.
  7. Attacks target the enterprise: Cybercriminals are increasingly targeting those most likely to pay, and businesses are the ideal targets. They have valuable data they can’t afford to lose and a lot more cash on hand than individual targets.
  8. Once in an organization, ransomware spreads quickly: It only takes one employee to spread an infected file throughout your organization. Your employees are sharing thousands of files with each other every day. Cloud collaboration platforms make file sharing easier than ever, but platforms with automatic sync can actually spread ransomware, syncing infected files to the shared cloud and exposing others.
  9. Prevention is nearly impossible: The number of cybercriminals, combined with the sprawling attack surface, make prevention virtually impossible. More importantly, preventive AV products can’t stop human error. Bigger walls and stronger locks do nothing if your employees are willingly or unintentionally handing over the keys.
  10. Paying the ransom fuels the demand: As long as victims keep paying the ransom, money will continue to pour into the growing black market for ransomware and fuel the increasing sophistication of these exploits. More money, more hackers, more attacks and higher ransoms­­–these are the real costs of paying the ransom.

Break the cycle: focus on the data

The 10 items above paint a bleak picture, but the antidote to ransomware is actually quite simple: Shift the focus from those trying to steal data to the data they’re trying to steal. By focusing on ensuring all data is collected and protected, the enterprise can enable a swift, clean recovery from ransomware and fight it at its source. Here are five quick tips to disarm ransomware:

  1. Collect and protect the data: Truly comprehensive enterprise data protection includes covering data where it lives—on the endpoint. The solution can’t rely on user behavior, and it can’t slow down user productivity because employees will work around it. The solution must be automatic, continuous and frictionless to give IT certainty that every user, every device, every file and every version is covered.
  2. If ransomware hits, have no fear: With all laptop and desktop data continuously backed up, ransomware ceases to be scary. The enterprise has the tools in place to execute an efficient, successful recovery.
  3. Make the clean, quick restore: Comprehensive endpoint data protection turns restore from a costly, weeks-long affair into a quick, push-button task. IT simply rolls back to the last known good state to conduct bulk file restores or allows users to perform a self-service restore.
  4. Never pay the ransom: With quick and comprehensive data restores, the enterprise can laugh at ransom demands.
  5. Feel proudyou’re doing your part: With the tools in place to take the ransom out of ransomware, the enterprise community can cut off the cash flow and begin to shut down the ransomware market.

The Seven Keys to Successful Windows 10 Migrations

With Windows 7 reaching the end of extended support in 2020, the pressure to move users to Windows 10 will continue to increase over the next two years. Many organizations are fast-tracking the migration to take advantage of the notable improvements in Windows 10, such as improved security and better enterprise-level performance. If they haven’t already, all businesses need to plan for the end-of-support dates for older Windows platforms. The good news: the move to Windows 10 should prove easier than the painful migration from Windows XP that most businesses experienced a few years ago. But tech refresh and data migration projects are always a headache. Careful planning is the key. Here are seven items to consider before making the switch.

  1. Can your infrastructure support Windows 10? It seems obvious, but you need to start your planning by making sure all technology is compatible. Check the hardware, software and applications against Windows 10 specifications. If you discover aging technology that’s not compatible with Windows 10, it’s probably time to replace those machines. This is also a good time to conduct application rationalization—update core applications and eliminate unnecessary or redundant applications to support consistency across your users.
  2. Will you migrate gradually—or in bulk? Successful migration planning starts with an up-to-date picture of your device landscape. First, determine the breakdown of the devices in your organizations. What is the mix of desktops versus laptops? What is the breakdown of operating systems in your organization? You also need to consider your “natural” refresh timeline—will this allow gradual migration as old devices are replaced?
  3. How will you strategically schedule migration phases? With a well-considered schedule, you can reduce the burden on both users and IT. Determine if migration phases will be based on department, physical location, device type or other criteria. Determine migration times that minimize productivity impacts for each specific user group. Engage users in migration scheduling to help minimize the IT burden of missed and rescheduled appointments.
  4. Is endpoint data backed up? Are you sure? Many companies end up losing data during a tech refresh/data migration project. There are a few ways to reduce the risks of this happening. Don’t rely on user-driven backup (i.e., requiring users to back up endpoint data to an external server), as users can be unpredictable and error-prone. Don’t substitute cloud collaboration platforms for endpoint backup, as they fail to capture all endpoint data and can expose data to security threats. Do ensure automatic, continuous backup of all endpoint data—whether executing an in-place or wipe-and-reload migration. Finally, make sure to enable continuous data access for users while their primary device is migrated. Keeping the data on employee devices protected during migration can be critical to your business. According to upcoming research from Code42, security and IT leaders estimate that 39 percent of their organization’s data is held exclusively on endpoint devices. What would happen to your business if such a large percentage of corporate data was lost?
  5. How are you handling user settings and profiles? When people buy a new phone, their apps and settings migrate seamlessly to their new device. They expect the same with their laptop at work. Users get back to work faster when device settings and user profiles—the things that allow users to work the way they want to—carry over to their new machine. For a Windows 10 migration, leverage the Microsoft User State Migration Tool (USMT) to save and transfer user profiles and settings. Make sure your endpoint data backup integrates with USMT to back up user profiles and settings. Ensure the reload includes user profiles, eliminating the user and/or IT burden of reconfiguring settings.
  6. Will you deploy an in-place or wipe-and-reload migration? Choose the option that’s best for your organization. An in-place migration can be faster and easier on IT resources, but it may limit enabling the full suite of Windows 10 security features and may not be suitable for devices nearing the end of their life cycle. This user-driven approach is also prone to user error. A wipe-and-reload migration remains the best path to enabling all Windows 10 security features and can minimize post-migration IT costs. It can, however, result in data loss if it’s not paired with automatic endpoint backup. This method is also typically slower and more expensive than the in-place option.
  7. How scalable is your migration plan? Assess where your organization fits on this spectrum today—and where you’d like to be. Consider technologies that can help you move toward the next level. One-to-one migrations, where IT works individually with each user, place a heavy burden on IT. The process is slow and increases IT costs. One-to-many migrations—classroom-style, where IT migrates several users at once—have a lighter touch, reduce scheduling issues and costs, and speed enterprise-wide migration projects. User-driven migrations have hardly any IT touch and offer the fastest path to migrations, as well as the most convenience for users and the smallest hit to productivity.

Answering these seven questions before starting a Windows 10 migration can greatly reduce the cost and disruption of your project. Not all of the answers will come easily, but there is little downside to rigorous preparation and a lot to gain. As the great Spanish writer Miguel De Cervantes said, “The man who is prepared has his battle half fought.”

What If Ransomware Was Just an Annoyance Rather Than a Crisis?

Imagine this: despite a strong firewall, your department is attacked by the latest ransomware that locks up all your employees’ devices right in the middle of the day, effectively stopping work.

Fifty minutes later, every device is back up and running, employees are back to work, your phone has gone blessedly silent, and the package of Tums you keep in your desk drawer lays undisturbed. And…you haven’t paid the ransom.

It’s possible. Here’s how.

It’s not just ransomware itself that’s a threat to businesses; it’s the increasing pace at which it evolves into ever more powerful superbugs that infect systems and evade detection.

The knee-jerk reaction from some in the security space: try to keep up with ransomware’s mutations by evolving prevention faster than the threat. But that game does not end in a winning proposition. While you may be able to defend your most valuable servers, it’s not uncommon for the attacker to find their way in through your endpoints. Faced with this reality, many companies are now just paying off ransoms with cryptocurrency, a short-sighted solution that doesn’t always work and that only makes you the target for more ransomware attacks.

Here’s a better approach: Adapt your preventative defenses, but work in parallel to deploy a ransomware-proof recovery plan for all of your vulnerable devices—including every endpoint.

What does a ransomware-proof recovery plan for endpoints look like? Here’s a quick step-by-step guide:

  1. Take stock of every endpoint device in your organization.
  2. Back up the data on every endpoint device. The more frequently you back it up, the less data you are at risk of losing in a ransomware attack. Backing up every 15 minutes is best practice.
  3. Back up your endpoint data in a solution independent of your cloud collaboration software. Ransomware can infect shared folders and, in some cases, spread it to other devices even faster.
  4. Confirm that your backup storage is not susceptible to ransomware attack.

With this recovery approach in place, any endpoint device locked by ransomware can be unlocked by wiping the device and fully restoring the user’s data from your backup stores. With practice and a well-documented process, users can be up and working in less than an hour after a ransomware attack.

Good prevention tactics will help reduce the cost and disruption caused by ransomware, but won’t eliminate your risks. Enacting a recovery plan that accounts for every endpoint is the most important next step you can take to limit ransomware’s impact on your organization.

Preserve IT and User Productivity with DIY Windows 10 Migrations

Device migrations have always been an unpleasant fact of life for enterprise IT and are only becoming more frequent. With new devices, new operating systems, OS updates and more coming out multiple times a year, businesses are constantly moving users to the latest tech to keep them at the leading edge of productivity and security.

As of March 2018, Windows 10 was only being used by 39 percent of all Windows users. With Windows 7 reaching the end of extended support in 2020, the pressure to move users to Windows 10 will increase over the next two years. That means there are many, many device migration projects on the horizon for enterprise IT teams.

In order to maintain the highest possible amount of IT and end user productivity, organizations should consider shifting to a “DIY,” or employee-led, migration model.

One-to-one migrations don’t fit the digital enterprise

Whether you call them one-to-one migrations, IT-heavy migrations or white-glove treatment, the traditional approach to device migration can’t keep up with the increasing frequency of tech refresh projects in the typical enterprise.

  • Users lose hours–or days–of productivity: Most one-to-one migrations take several hours, if not days. That means users often lose an entire day of productivity. That’s annoying for the individual user, and the collective impact is immense in large-scale, enterprise-wide tech refresh projects.
  • IT is overwhelmed: For businesses in every industry, IT is shifting from acting as a necessary cost center to delivering a wide range of differentiating value. But when they’re forced to spend the bulk of their time on low-level tasks like one-to-one migrations, IT teams have less time for high-value projects.
  • Projects run on forever: A survey of Code42 customers found that the biggest challenge for migration projects delivered via traditional approaches was scheduling time with users. Flexible work schedules, increasing mobility and a growing remote workforce make scheduling one-to-one-migrations a nightmare. This is part of the reason that data migrations have an average time overrun of 41 percent.
  • They’re incredibly expensive: Businesses tend to think the cost of the technology itself is the big budget item in tech refresh. But IT costs are what lead 80 percent of data migrations to run over budget.
  • Valuable data falls through the cracks: Traditional device migration workflows lean heavily on manual user actions for data backup and restore. The result: One in three enterprise data migration projects experience significant data loss.

Moving to a DIY migration model

As device migrations come more frequently, the pain of the “old way” is becoming evident to IT and business leaders. Moreover, innovative businesses and industry analysts are demonstrating and quantifying the promise of a more scalable approach to device migration.

Imagine end users performing their own migrations in as little as 30 minutes, with no lost data. Consider the massive productivity savings for both users and IT when extended across an enterprise. The savings add up quickly, and both IT and end users are happier.

Code42 vs. Druva fastest recovery

Prioritize Time-to-Recovery Over Backup Speed–Here’s Why

Achieving success in your business is a moving target. It’s important to periodically question your assumptions about how you define success.

Case in point: backup and restore capabilities. It used to be that backup speed was the most important specification for endpoint backup solutions.

A lot has changed since then:

  • Backup intervals have become more frequent, decreasing the amount of incremental data being backed up at any one time. The best solutions back up continuously, reducing the number of incremental file changes even further.
  • Modern backup solutions capture block-level changes, not full files. This reduces backup sizes even further.
  • Backups are now performed in the background. Device, network and storage performance have increased so that incremental backups don’t impact work and are virtually invisible to employees.

At the same time, the importance of time-to-recovery has increased:

  • Unlike backups occurring invisibly in the background, restores by definition stop work from proceeding. Restore time equals user downtime.
  • The impact of lost data is higher. Business is moving faster, and your teams are more dependent on their data than ever. According to Deloitte, 80 percent of a company’s value is now in its information.
  • The longer data is lost, the more the business is exposed to risk. A ransomware attack includes a deadline; GDPR requires full disclosure of breaches within 72 hours.

Given this new reality, time-to-recovery has replaced backup speed as a priority performance measure for backup and recovery solutions. What does this mean for your business?

Know your time-to-restore. Conduct real-life tests of your restore performance under various conditions, including a range of restores from single file to full device restores. Also test cyber threat scenarios; 48 percent of companies in a recent Code42 survey have been breached in some way in the last 18 months.

Identify opportunities to improve. From your testing, identify the biggest opportunities to shorten time-to-recovery. The most valuable changes could be people, process or technology-related, so take a wide view.

Prioritize and act. Once you’ve defined your time-to-recovery improvement options, act immediately on those that are “free.” For example, something as simple as a setting change may offer significant improvements. Prioritize more significant changes, and build a business case if significant change is required.

Time-to-recovery is a key to your business continuity plans. If it’s not a priority for you today, it should be.

Code42 customer success: North Highland

Code42 Customer Success Story: North Highland

Code42 provides your business with a variety of data security benefits, including increased productivity, risk mitigation, streamlined user workflows and more – all in a single product that’s been proven to ultimately save you money. While Code42 has a few primary use cases – backup and recovery, device migration, etc. – we’ve learned that our different customers use our solutions in different ways.

We’ve asked some of our customers to tell their stories of how Code42 has helped in their organizations. Today, Lincoln Higdon, director of information technology at professional services firm North Highland, explains how they use Code42 for backup and recovery, including how Code42 saved some very important data from coffee-related disaster. He has high praise for how Code42 has evolved along with his company’s needs and for how the Code42 platform consistently saves IT time and productivity. In the professional services industry, the old saying “time is money” is especially true. As a company that depends on billable hours, any downtime can literally harm the bottom line, the company’s reputation or both. Fortunately, with Code42, firms like North Highland can easily bounce back from data loss. Check out the video to hear Lincoln’s story.

A Code42 Customer Success Story: Qualcomm

A Code42 Customer Success Story: Qualcomm

Code42 provides your business with a variety of data security benefits, including increased productivity, risk mitigation, streamlined user workflows, and more – all in a single product that’s been proven to ultimately save you money. While Code42 has a few primary use cases – backup and recovery, device migration, etc. – we’ve learned that our different customers use our solutions in different ways.

We’ve asked some of our customers to tell their stories of how Code42 has helped in their organizations. Today, Qualcomm IT Engineer Ben Molesworth and Senior Manager of Information Technology Chris Millet discuss the multiple benefits their organization derives from the Code42 platform. In the video below, Ben and Chris discuss Code42’s data restore capabilities, how Code42 has cut their tech refresh process from eight hours per device to only thirty minutes, and how Code42 makes it easy to manage 30,000 users from a single admin console. See their stories in the video below.

Simplified Device Migration with Code42

Code42’s endpoint data security solution provides your business with a variety of benefits, including increased productivity, risk mitigation, streamlined user workflows and more – all in a single product that’s been proven to ultimately save you money. One way Code42 helps you cut costs is with our device migration feature – moving employees to upgraded devices has never been faster or easier.

With Code42, employee data is automatically backed up every 15 minutes by default. When it’s time to move an employee to a new computer, their data can be transferred to a new machine seamlessly – even before the employee has turned in the old machine. With Code42, gone are the days when device migration projects meant hours of lost productivity (and, in turn, lost revenue). According to Code42 customer Schneider Electric Sweden, Code42 cuts their tech refresh process from 24 hours down to three or four, saving roughly 7,000 hours in employee downtime per year. Think about how much money 7,000 wasted hours would cost your organization.

To learn more about how device migration with Code42 saves time and money, watch our latest feature video below.