Dan Cunningham’s Workstation Migration Assistant (WMA) is a visual wrapper for the User State Migration Tool , designed to simplify the capture / restore process for end-users, and at the same time being highly configurable so that it can be customised to suit different organisational needs.
Some of it’s features that have interested me include:
- The ability to migrate via a pre-defined network storage location, external USB drive, or user-specified location. USB drive detection is automatic, and you can decide whether drives below a certain size are ignored (ie, memory sticks)
- An optional Hard Disk Health Check that will run a CHKDSK prior to capture and fix errors if any are found
- An optional Encryption using a pre-defined company encryption key, or per-user customised encryption (for highly sensitive data that can’t be stored on a server without being encrypted)
- The ability to use different configurations for “XP Only” (XP > XP) migrations or standard (XP > Vista and Vista > Vista) migrations
- Automatically run pre and post-capture / restore scripts and programs (very useful to further configure machine settings)
- Migrate domain only accounts, or domain and local.
I really like the idea of using this as a front end to a USB based solution that moves the idea of state migration off the network and into the realms of being a user task – with a large USB fob device (say 8GB) being given to a field based employee to backup their laptop before re-build or replacement.
I need to point out that WMA is not a Microsoft product and can be used via a donation ware payment model – that said, the latest version (RC2) of WMA can be downloaded from:
Feedback on the utility can be sent to Dan directly: firstname.lastname@example.org
This post was contributed by Richard Smith a Senior Consultant with Microsoft Services, UK.