Hanze UAS Migrates Windows XP to Windows 7 Desktops with Liquidware Labs ProfileUnity
Hanze University of Applied Sciences (Hanze UAS), based in the Netherlands, provides quality academic programmes that integrate applied research and innovation in state-of-the-art, modern facilities at its beautiful, expansive Groningen campus. The University encompasses 17 Schools which offer concentrations in the arts, technology, energy, business, sports and health care. Hanze UAS also supports the efforts of more than 50 professors who are actively engaged in research projects on these concentrations at six Centres of Research and Innovation. In the course of its history, Hanze UAS has built a reputation of being truly international and today attracts students from all over the world.
In order to better support their expansive student body, the University embarked on a project to upgrade its desktop environment with a potential move to virtual desktops at a future stage. However a more immediate concern was to migrate desktops off of Windows XP before end of support and collectively move to Windows 7. Hanze UAS used Active Directory and Landesk to manage their physical desktops. They also used roaming profiles to handle students profiles, which was causing issues and incurring a lot of support from the IT staff. They wanted a solution to replace roaming profiles as well as automate and streamline the migration but was also cost-effective and simple, did not require extensive back-end systems to support it, and be quickly usable by IT staff with a minimum of training time. Hanze UAS IT staff turned to Liquidware Labs partner FlexVirtual, who recommended ProfileUnity. ProfileUnity "harvests" existing user profiles, creates a universally compatible format that supports future migrations to Windows OS, so that once Hanze UAS moved to Windows 7, they would also be set for future moves to Windows 10. Migrations with ProfileUnity are automatic, error-free, and incur no student downtime on computers, as migrations happen in the background.
Another major issue for Hanze UAS was that student login times were taking more than two minutes each time. When tallied up against the six to eight times that students typically logged into the workspaces, that meant that they were losing almost a half-hour of class time per day, which was unacceptable to administrators.
With ProfileUnity, Hanze UAS successfully transitioned to Windows 7 within months, even while handling the work with their internal team and setting the pace they wanted. They are now also positioned for moves to Windows 10 when required. Now that the University is past the limitations of roaming profiles, login times have dropped significantly to about 30 seconds, thus eliminating the other concern and time drain for the IT staff.