Clone and deploy desktop computers with FOG

The Impersonator

Other FOG Features

FOG is a complex piece of software. While I've only just covered the server's core feature, it ships with several more. The FOG server is scalable and can manage large networks spread over multiple locations in the same building or around the world. It allows you to arrange hosts into several groups for easier management. One of the most useful features of the FOG server, especially for admins of larger networks, is the multicast ability. Using this feature, you can deploy multiple machines in one go.

However, to use this feature successfully, you'll need to make sure your FOG host has enough computational and network resources to stream multiple images simultaneously. For larger networks, you can have multiple FOG installations configured as storage servers. These storage servers share images and take the load off the main FOG server when imaging computers. The distributed storage servers also speed up unicast transfers and introduce data redundancy.

Besides deployment tasks, you can also create various other types of tasks [5] to check up on the computer and its installation. Head to Hosts | List All Hosts and click the Goto task list represented by the crossed arrows icon. Here click the icon labelled Advanced to bring up a list of several deployment options, such as Test Disk and Password Reset (Figure 6). Select one and then power on the machine to automatically launch the task.

Figure 6: You can create tasks to fix boot errors, remote wipe hosts, recover deleted files, and even scan for viruses.

The FOG server can also install and manage printers [6] on the network. Depending on the host's OS, you can also use the server to track user access to computers by their Windows usernames and automatically log off users and shutdown the computer after a specified period of inactivity. FOG can also install and uninstall apps via snap-ins [7].

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