Computer Lab Maintenance Software

Computer Lab Maintenance Software


Having a computer lab requires continued maintenance of the lab computers. Maintenance issues include software updates, viruses, deleting spyware, people changing computer settings, or an inexperienced user deleting an important setting or software. To save time in lab maintenance, your organization may want to look at desktop security solutions. A desktop security solution provides the user with the ability to do the activities that you would want them to do, without having to worry about damage to the software of the computer. This makes maintaining your computer lab much simpler. There are three main solutions which include:


1.) Desktop Security Software. This software creates an image of your computer configuration and reimages each time the computer restarts, so that users cannot change configurations without a password.


Single License: $59, 15 Computer per Building License $325, 100 Computer per Building License: $570, Unlimited Computers per Building License $685

  • Deep Freeze
    • Pros: Cheap in low volume, works with both Windows and Macintoshes
    • Cons: More expensive than others in volume

Pricing: 10-24 computers ($17.40/computer), 25 - 99 ($14.30/computer), 100 – 249 $10.40/computer


2.) Terminal Services. Terminal Services has client computers boot from the server, so that each client boots a clean image from the server.

Option 1: Windows Terminal Services

  • Pros: Provides simple maintenance of computers, can work with low end client computers, low cost implementation
  • Cons: Requires significant system administration skill to set up, requires high end server
  • Discount Purchasing: Purchase Windows 2003 Server through TechSoup ( ($160) including Windows Device Client Access License at $2.00 Per user and Windows Terminal Device Client Access Licenses at $6.00 Per User


Option 2: Linux Terminal Services/Thin Clients boot Linux machines from a server and can be very useful for providing a low-maintenance computer lab with low-end computers. Two main options are:

  1. Linux Terminal Server Project ( Great free software.
  2. WYSE. ( Market leader in commercial Linux thin client software.


3.) Desktop Lockdown.

Option 1: Windows XP provides strong capabilities to restrict user permissions to not be able to change significant items in the configuration.

  • Pros: Can be used without purchasing additional software.
  • Cons: Requires a highly technical system administrator to implement and maintain correctly, does not cover all issues, users may encounter problems

Option 2: Full Armor provides a complete solution to lockdown the desktop.

  • Pros: Provides more complete lockdown than standard Windows XP functions.
  • Cons: Can be more difficult to setup and maintain than Desktop security software.


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