Bill's Genealogy Blog

Bill Buchanan is a long-time genealogy enthusiast, living in Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada. This blog will describe my experiences as I research my family history and help others.

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Location: Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada

I am a retired online school teacher. I love family history. Since 2007, I have spent much of my time providing part-time support for the world's largest free family history site This is very rewarding. I have helped others with the Family Tree and related FamilySearch products.
Since April 2010, I have served in the Edmonton Riverbend Family History Centre. I have a FHC blog at Bill's Family History Center Blog For information the Latter-day Saints and family history click

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Setting up Windows7 64-bit Computers at the Family History Center Our new computers arrived, 5 shiny new 17" Dell laptops with Windows7 Home Premium (64-bit), and a Dell multifunction wireless printer. This involved the removal of five miscellaneous old Windows2000 and XP machines, and the tons of cables that connected them to the router and connected them to the multi-port printer switch. Yes, we had one of the world's last functioning 4 port manually-switched printer switches. The Stake Tech Specialist installed the new wireless system, and that part is working like a charm. The only wires now are the power cords and the security cables. Suddenly we have more work space. Having new computers required installing almost everything. A FHC support missionary said that they do not support Windows7 and that we might need the Disk Image CD that installs WindowsXP, but he wan't sure and transferred me to HQ Support. There I was assured that Windows7 would be no problem, although the 64-bit version might bring a few extra challenges. He instructed me to go to and run the FHC software. This installed the the LANDesk software, which gave us access to the FHC Services Online Portal. (This is a slow installation, so save the installer to a flash drive and copy it to each computer so that it can be installing on multiple machines simultaneously.) I found that the revision number on the installer does not match the version installed, but it still worked. We were able to signin again to the Online Portal and so our main online research tools were now functional. I installed the free OpenOffice software and set the file associations so that MS Office files would open automatically in OpenOffice instead of the 6-day trial version of MS Office. I ran into a problem using the LANDesk Desktop to download and install the 3rd-party affiliate software such as AncestralQuest, FamilyInsight and Rootsmagic. I called FHC Support again, and was given the download path where the installation files are stored on the local machine. I also discovered that the LANDesk Desktop required me to reboot the computer after downloading each application. I assume this is a peculiarity with Windows7 64-bit, as I could download and install several applications simultaneously with Windows2000 and WindowsXP. It was suggested that I download the software I wanted on one machine, and copy the files to a flash drive for installation on the other 4 new computers. This saved a lot of time and frustration. Church HQ Support also asked us to remove McAffee Antivirus from the new computers and install Sophos Antivirus from the LANDesk Desktop, as McAffee creates obstacles for FHC Support. Here again, we copied the Sophos installer to a flash drive for use on the other computers. Unfortunately we installed it from the flash drive on one machine rather than copying it to the computer's Desktop and running it from there. When installation takes 20 minutes, the difference between the two approaches is almost an hour and a half. (i.e. 20 minutes for simultaneous installations vs. 100 minutes for sequential installations) A second flash drive solved the problem, and we were finished before 10 PM. This week I should finish the installation of the 3rd party software. Patrons with laptops will enjoy being able to access the internet in the FHC, although the long security code may be a challenge. We are enjoying the new machines. We opted to install mice, as the touch pads are a challenge for many of our users, including me.


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