Jeremy Chapman of Microsoft's Windows Deployment division published a compilation "Windows 7: Best of Deployment" --
"While the thirty items listed in my "Windows 7: Best of Deployment Compilation" seems like quite a bit, you should be able to get through first 20 items listed within a day. At that point, you'll have a pretty good idea of what everything does and be able to get started with Win7 deployment project. Items 21-34 are more at the hands-on level and will explain individual tools, while blogs will often provide workarounds and tips for things not found in the documentation. If you follow the sequence of everything listed below, you'll be relative proficient in operating system in under a week. My advice would be to start creating builds and using the tools as early as possible -- nothing is more valuable than learning by experience, even if the experience is in a set of virtual test machines," Jeremy said.
Good luck, Happy Windows 7 deployment!
The following guides are mostly written content and will take anywhere from 10 to 60 minutes to read through each one.
- Deploying Windows 7 from A to Z
- Windows XP to Windows 7 Migration Guide
- Understanding the Application Compatibility in Your Environment
- Choosing a Deployment Strategy
- Deploying Windows® 7 Essential Guidance from the Windows 7 Resource Kit and TechNet Magazine(author's choice***)
Once you make it through the overviews, these videos will put many of the concepts together and make them more real. More videos can be found here, but I am highlighting the important and more detailed ones.
- Microsoft Assessment and Planning Toolkit explains toolkit for creating and assessing hardware compatibility prior to a Win7 deployment project. (5 minutes)
- Getting Started with Microsoft Application Compatibility Toolkit Part 1 of 5 in the series -- explains toolkit, including prerequisites for installation and how to configure ACT to collect app inventory and initial compatibility findings. (7 minutes)
- Creating Data Collection Packages to Generate an Application Inventory Part 2 of 5 -- shows how DCPs are created for inventorying and analyzing apps in your environment. Learn how to label DCPs used for sorting app inventories according to user roles. (9 minutes)
- Analyzing Compatibility Data Returned by Data Collection Packages Part 3 of 5 -- shows how data is collected by compatibility evaluators, how to prioritize apps, and how to synchronize your app portfolio with Microsoft Compatibility Exchange Web service. (13 minutes)
- Mitigating Application Compatibility Issues with Common Compatibility Fixes Part 4 of 5 -- demonstration highlights many of the most commonly used compatibility fixes (or "shims") for enterprise line-of-business apps. (14 minutes)
- Detecting and Mitigating Administrative Privilege Requirements with the Standard User Analyzer Part 5 of 5 -- shows how Standard User Analyzer, part of ACT, can be used to detect potential issues with apps that require admin privileges. Also learn how compatibility mitigations are created and applied by the tool in order to help fix many of the issues Standard User Analyzer detects. (8 minutes)
- Thrive Live! Migrating from IE6 to IE8 (Part 1 of 2) demo-heavy webcast highlights real-world scenarios to configure, manage, deploy, and ensure the compatibility of their Web apps with IE8. (26 minutes)
- Thrive Live! Migrating from IE6 to IE8 (Part 2 of 2)(27 Minutes)
- Building the Deployment Environment with MDT 2010 explains how to use MDT to create fully automated XP to Win7 migrations -- with data, applications, drivers and packages. (10 minutes)
- Initiating the Install and Migrating the PC using MDT 2010 shows the initiation of Lite Touch Installation and explains the entire operating system migration and the phases of the automated process for moving XP computers to Win7. (10 minutes)
Deployment Tools and VHDs to Download
If you've read the overviews or watched the videos, these tools don't need descriptions, but the Proof of Concept Jumpstart Kit (a big working virtual demo environment does).
- Microsoft Assessment and Planning Toolkit
- Application Compatibility Toolkit
- Windows Automated Installation Kit for Windows 7
- Microsoft Deployment Toolkit
- System Center Configuration Manager 2007 R2 VHD
- Proof of Concept Jumpstart Kit v1.5
Deeper Technical Guidance
Once you've read the overviews, watched the videos and downloaded the tools, these deeper guides will explain how to use the tools. Guidance included with the tools themselves tends to be pretty good, but the online guidance in some cases is more up-to-date.
- Application Compatibility Toolkit 5.6 Documentation
- Addressing Application Compatibility When Migrating to Internet Explorer 8
- Windows Automated Installation Kit for Windows 7 Documentation
- MDT 2010 Print-Ready Documentation
- Operating System Deployment in Configuration Manager Documentation