Clerk Upgraded to Windows 7

Discussions around the setup, operation, replacement, and disposal of clerk computers, not to include using MLS
craiggsmith
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Clerk Upgraded to Windows 7

Postby craiggsmith » Sun Jul 10, 2011 3:22 pm

I stopped by the ward with the most recent computer today and found that the clerk had upgraded it to Windows 7. At first I was concerned about licensing, but in reading other posts here I learned that it's OK since the computer has a Windows 7 license sticker on it. It was built in January but came with XP installed. I'm glad I spent so many hours setting it up and finalizing the setup procedure!

Are there any real advantages to running Windows 7? I don't have much experience with it; my 3 home computers and my work computer are all still XP. The reason I stopped by was because the finance clerk complained about a lack of network access. With our XP machines a "Repair" always fixes the problem, but I couldn't find any such option on this machine. The network control panel was so different I really struggled. Ultimately I disconnected him and reconnected him but it didn't seem to solve the problem so I gave up. I couldn't even figure out how to log in as administrator; ctrl-alt-delete doesn't bring up the advanced login screen like it does in XP. Of course, the passwords are changed so I couldn't log in anyway.

I tried to upgrade two of my home computers but they didn't have enough memory. So I tried to upgrade the memory but only got blue screens in return. I'm eligible for an upgrade at work but haven't yet had time to deal with all the software re-installs, but I guess I better get on with it so I can support the new computers. I should probably just replace at least one of my home computers as well (it needs a complete Windows re-install at the very least) but haven't had time for that either (and I'm trying to save money).

So I guess my main question is: is there anything I should do about this situation? Maybe verify the license, change the administrator password back? It seems that he shouldn't really do this without checking first, although he is more PC savvy than I am so I probably shouldn't worry. But I did notice that he had auto updates on manual and it hadn't checked for an update in over a month. I prefer to have each computer set up the same way, so after I figure out the ideal settings I'll have to go through it.
Craig
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South Jordan, UT

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aebrown
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Postby aebrown » Sun Jul 10, 2011 5:03 pm

craiggsmith wrote:It seems that he shouldn't really do this without checking first, although he is more PC savvy than I am so I probably shouldn't worry.


You're right -- he absolutely shouldn't do system upgrades without checking with the stake technology specialist. Computers are "owned" by the stake, and wards are just users. Of course, you should be diplomatic about it, but all the wards should be very clear that they are not supposed to play with the hardware without involving the STS. The STS is in communication loops that clerks don't always see. Not every ward clerk knows whether MLS runs under Windows 7, for example -- and until a few months ago it didn't. And since the STS is responsible for supporting all the systems, it's entirely reasonable for him to specify that all the computers in the stake run the same OS.
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Postby russellhltn » Sun Jul 10, 2011 6:08 pm

craiggsmith wrote:Are there any real advantages to running Windows 7?


Other then the fact that Microsoft will drop making security patches for XP in 2014, I'm not sure as there's any functional reasons that Win7 is better. It might be more resistant to viruses and other stuff found on the web - maybe.

craiggsmith wrote:I couldn't even figure out how to log in as administrator; ctrl-alt-delete doesn't bring up the advanced login screen like it does in XP.


You log out, then then click "switch users" and you should be able to specify a different login. However, starting late with XP, MS did some interesting things with the Admin account. It might not be easily available.

craiggsmith wrote:So I guess my main question is: is there anything I should do about this situation? Maybe verify the license, change the administrator password back? It seems that he shouldn't really do this without checking first, although he is more PC savvy than I am so I probably shouldn't worry.


Well, if he was so good with computers, why is it broken? Permissions aside, it appears to me he doesn't have the necessary skills to go out on his own.

Yes, I would check the license. There are several "flavors" of Win7: Home, Professional, and Enterprise to name a few. You probably should check that what's installed matches the sticker. Otherwise, the licensing is questionable.

As for the network issue (assuming you do keep Win7), I'll guess that the clerk failed to download the drivers from Dell to enable the Network card.
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craiggsmith
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Postby craiggsmith » Sun Jul 10, 2011 6:25 pm

Thanks brethren.

The STS before me was setting up Stake Clerk accounts on all the machines; I was thinking this wasn't necessary with an Admin account, but maybe I should continue this practice?
Craig
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jdlessley
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Postby jdlessley » Sun Jul 10, 2011 7:17 pm

craiggsmith wrote:I stopped by the ward with the most recent computer today and found that the clerk had upgraded it to Windows 7. ... It seems that he shouldn't really do this without checking first, although he is more PC savvy than I am so I probably shouldn't worry.
The Lord does not necessarily call those who are the most qualified in the eyes of man to perform the duties of an office. An STS is called to perform the duties of that office and none other. You would not presume to perform the tasks and responsibilities of a bishop without being called to that office. And so the ward clerk should not step beyond his own office and usurp the responsibilities of the STS.


aebrown's comments are right on. The ward clerk most likely does not know, no matter how computer savvy he is, why Church computers are configured and managed the way they are. He is not in the communication loop. He also does not know the added work he creates for the STS when he presumes that his actions, no matter how good intentioned, are the best. Before any configuration changes are made the STS must be informed and the stake president approve.

craiggsmith wrote:At first I was concerned about licensing, but in reading other posts here I learned that it's OK since the computer has a Windows 7 license sticker on it. It was built in January but came with XP installed.
Licensing is an issue. As RussellHltn noted, the version the Church uses may be different that the one the clerk installed. Also the stake president has to approve any configuration changes. Before continuing with the Windows 7 installation the stake president needs to give his approval. The STS must insure the stake president is fully informed of all aspects involved in upgrading from XP to Windows 7.

If this was my situation as an STS, I would contact LUS and find out what I needed to do to ensure compliance with Church procedures and Windows licensing. Windows 7 may be authorized under license for the computer but without the proper distribution the license requirements may not be met.

craiggsmith wrote:Are there any real advantages to running Windows 7?
There are quite a few advantages. But there are many questions about Windows profiles and profile rights that we need to have officially answered by CHQ. MLS is the biggest concern. While it no longer requires Windows admin rights to function there are other issues to be resolved. There are a few ohter threads discussing these issues.

craiggsmith wrote:So I guess my main question is: is there anything I should do about this situation?
Yes. Discuss it with the bishop and the stake president. Part of that discussion is to make it perfectly clear that the STS is the only one called to manage the computers within the stake. The other part is to help determine whether leaving Windows 7 on the machine is best.

If the computer will remain configured with Windows 7 and without direction from CHQ on configurations for Windows 7 computers, a stake configuration should be determined that complies with existing computer configuration policies and procedures. This may require reading several threads in the forums to get some background and suggestions. The mls.lds.org installation instructions for Dell 740 computers is a good place for configuration. They can be adapted for Windows 7 installations.
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Postby jdlessley » Sun Jul 10, 2011 7:27 pm

craiggsmith wrote:The STS before me was setting up Stake Clerk accounts on all the machines; I was thinking this wasn't necessary with an Admin account, but maybe I should continue this practice?
It is good practice to have a Windows admin user account for the stake no matter what it is called to provide alternate administrative access just in case something happens to the ward admin account.
JD Lessley
Have you tried finding your answer on the LDS.org Help Center page or the LDSTech wiki?

craiggsmith
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Postby craiggsmith » Sun Jul 10, 2011 8:41 pm

Thanks very much for the excellent advice and support, I really appreciate it. You all do a great service for the Church.

With regards to a stake account, what I meant was that it seems redundant to create a separate explicit account when there is a built-in Administrator account that could always be used, but maybe there are good reasons to do it. I didn't notice a "switch users" option or anything else that would give me another login option, but I'll have to take another look.
Craig
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Mikerowaved
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Postby Mikerowaved » Sun Jul 10, 2011 9:00 pm

craiggsmith wrote:Thanks very much for the excellent advice and support, I really appreciate it. You all do a great service for the Church.

With regards to a stake account, what I meant was that it seems redundant to create a separate explicit account when there is a built-in Administrator account that could always be used, but maybe there are good reasons to do it. I didn't notice a "switch users" option or anything else that would give me another login option, but I'll have to take another look.

The built-in Administrator account is disabled by default in Vista and Windows 7. The account named during the install process (probably "Clerk") becomes part of the Administrators Group. Yes, it's redundant, but some of us like to have a working backup account in case the primary one gets hosed.
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craiggsmith
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Postby craiggsmith » Sun Jul 10, 2011 9:16 pm

OK, thanks. I definitely want a separate account, and given the changes in the newer OS's it sounds like it's easiest to just explicitly create another one.

Thanks again.
Craig
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South Jordan, UT

craiggsmith
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Postby craiggsmith » Sun Jul 17, 2011 6:36 pm

I've been thinking that since XP will no longer be supported before these computers have reached end-of-life, will we have to upgrade them sometime anyway? Normally the lack of support for software isn't an issue if things are working OK, but with Windows you need the constant security updates.

I just got a new computer at work -- wow is Win 7 different. So far I don't like it at all, but I don't hate it as much as Vista.
Craig
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