We put out 40 identical computers to a group of users. The system administrator had me create a single machine with the image I wanted, then ghosted it to other machines. He said he had trouble with 64 bit windows 7, so he did it by cloning drives, which meant removing them from the machines.
Aside from not wanting to open machines again, I would like to go one step further, and be able to shoot an image across the internet. All the software I have installed is at most 30-40Gb, it shouldn't be that bad. If you count a potential reload of the operating system, that would be another 40Gb probably. Is there any boot disk I could put in that could then copy a partition image from a remote site to install? It seems like I could almost write a shell script and do this with a Linux CD if the partitions are the same on all machines.
Moreover, suppose next year we upgrade and get 40 newer machines. Now we have two kinds. Is there any way to copy the files onto the partition in a single script, but not do block by block copy?