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Hello Cindi -
Getting a workstation set up "just right" is not an easy task and changing for the sake of change is not a good idea. And we all have heard or experienced the nightmare of RH/version control over a network - avoid it if you can.
As to what I do - I have three workstations:
> Office Workstation with normal corporate image of Office 2000 or Office 2003 (including Outhouse, err, Outlook), MS Project, Rational Suite and a ZIP program.
I have added to it : RH5, Photoshop, the GIMP, Open Office, several utilites for screen capture, PDF (Adobe Acrobat 4 and non-Adobe), search/replace utility, html/xml editing, FTP transfer, numerous browsers/versions, etc.
> Home Office has most of the Office Workstation software plus a LOT more for personal use.
> Test Bed is bare-bones for testing beta releases, has no Internet access and only what the beta software under test requires as a minimum.
The Office Workstation and the Home Office workstation get backed up on a fairly regular bases. Note to your Sys Admin: when creating a backup image of a RoboHelp workstation you MUST set the software switch to back up the master boot record as Adobe writes your registration there (most imaging software does NOT back up the MBR by default - requires setting a switch). Don't let your Admin insist that Microsoft doesn't allow that as it constitutes a "root kit" - my Admin didn't believe me until it was too late.
Always back up the workstation BEFORE adding, up grading or patching software - especially before installing Microsoft patches (be wary of "patch Tuesday" - the second Tuesday of every month, just before "reboot Wednesday").
Never install beta software on a production workstation.
The Test Bed gets wiped frequently and is never used for company/customer projects.
Both the Home Office and Test Bed dual boot between Linux and Windows. Only the Linux systems are allowed Internet access with the exception of Test Bed - Windows access is allowed only to register the beta software (Adobe doesn't have over the phone registration for beta testing) - after that it gets unplugged.
Thanks for the reply - what hardware do you have? how many RAM, ROM, etc?
I have a backup developer that helps while I am out of the office and, because of the number of programs (Media Player, Dreamweaver, etc) she has on her desktop, it takes like 55 mins to even download a set of RH project files to her desktop for her to work with, etc., which takes 2-3 mins on the RH desktop I use.
Because RH has to be on C Drive I gave her remote access to my RH Desktop.