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How to change computer names + workgroups on network


lyonrt
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I have a network of about 127 computers.  I just came on board and I am fixing all of their screw ups.  Besides going to each of the machines and manually changing the workgroup and computer names, is there a way to go in from my machine and change the computer name and workgroup?  I looked at a couple of the machines and they are on random workgroups,etc.

Thanks for any advice,

Ty

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Lots of people, fanboi. Try getting a job with your mad *buntu skillz.

As for 127 computers, I'd *seriously* recommend Active Directory or something similar. Even though the command you want to run is "NETDOM MEMBER mycomputer /JOINWORKGROUP workgroupname", it's still going to be the best part of a couple of days hard shlep going around each machine with a USB drive. You might want to look at the "USB hacks" section of the forums as a simple script and a U3 drive could speed up the process considerably.

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Do these pc/servers logon to the lan through a specific domain using any startup scripts? On our lan we have everyone start up with their user credentials, but they all map to certain drives that execute different startup scripts and batch jobs. If you have somehting like that in place, drop a bat file in their startups to push out the changes. You will have to make sure that once it is done they reboot to see the changes, as well as make it so that if they are allready starting with the correct workgroup the script stops executing and continues the logon. Not sure how you would impliment it, but thats how we do it where I work. This is also good to push out updates as well. I notice when I logon at times certain batches will run and promt telling you that it is installing such and such an update, new virus definitions or youll see batch jobs open and close executing updates to things like java or email software, etc...

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I like all of your suggestions!  Thanks so much,

However, I am stuck in a hard spot.  The computers are as if they brought in personal desktops and the users assigned admin passwords themselves.  There isnt any uniformity.  I guess thats what I am trying to create to begin with.  - EEK.  Any other suggestions for someone like me in such a mess?

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Start again. Break the computers into groups based on location and the amount of usage each bit gets. Plan to reinstall every machine with a fresh install of XP (customize it using nlite). Setup active directory to manage the computers remotely and lock them down. If you plan it out and split it into tasks ( ie design the network, setup the servers, do a small test group of desktops, tweak it and bring over more desktops) 2-3 months and it should be sorted, may sound like its a mission but it would be worth it.

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or if re-installing XP on 127 computers sounds like a daunting task, if the computers are in family (the machines are the same Hardware), you could have a look at network rolled out HDD imagery software, such as... Norton Ghost.

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request a trial of Microsoft Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset (formerly Winternals)... the ERD kit had a password tool called locksmith, which would allow you to reset the admin passwords. or there may be other software for the ultimate boot cd http://www.ubcd4win.com/.

first step I would work on is getting a windows 2003 AD server with appropriate licensing.  Setup your domain first, then add users, then transition one user/computer at a time.

Its a bit slower that way, but everything can be centralized and setup properly.

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