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CDW Launches Volume Custom Software Imaging for Macs

Want Macs Configured Your Way? CDW Launches Volume Custom Software Imaging
for Apple Systems

VERNON HILLS, Ill. — CDW Corporation, a leading provider of technology
products and services to business, government and education, today
announced that its Technology Services organization now provides custom
software imaging services on a volume basis to support quantity purchases
of Apple products. As one of Apple’s largest channel partners, CDW has
installed the capacity to image hundreds of Apple laptop and desktop
products per week, scalable to still higher volumes as needed.

“CDW’s streamlined custom-imaging process is especially valuable to
businesses that buy Apple computers in volume, because it reduces
deployment time and expense, and allows users to minimize transition time
to new equipment,” said Norm Lillis, CDW vice president, services.
“Providing this service is the latest way that CDW delivers added value to
customers, in this case by relieving IT personnel of a time-consuming core
task, so that they can focus on higher-level technology issues and

Morris Communications: Nationwide Media Company Trusts Mac Imaging to CDW

Morris Communications (, headquartered in Augusta,
Georgia, is a multimedia company with diversified holdings that include
newspaper and magazine publishing, outdoor advertising, radio broadcasting,
book publishing and distribution, and online services. The rapidly growing
company operates more than 100 business locations in 32 states and several
in overseas locations.

Roughly 25 percent of Morris Communications computer users are creative
personnel using Apple products, which once were purchased and configured
locally by staff in the company’s 100-plus business locations — a rugged
challenge for technical support and cost management. In 2005, Morris
Communications launched a plan to standardize the company’s Mac desktops
and laptops. They purchased the equipment through CDW but took delivery and
imaged the computers internally at Morris Communications headquarters
before shipping them on to user destinations.

“Standardizing our Mac equipment and images was exactly the right thing to
do — it enabled better asset management and technical support, so the
first step alone made for stronger, more cost-effective Mac systems,” said
Morris Communications Business Analyst Dave Mussman, who has spearheaded
the company’s standardization programs. “However, that first step also
meant a considerable amount of extra shipping, an IT staff investment of
about three hours per machine in Augusta, and some additional training and
time investment from our associates at each location. We were not done
looking for the best solution.”

Mussman and his team considered other ways to manage the delivery of
standardized Mac images, even considering installation of an imaging server
at each location to reduce shipping expenses. However, their goal was also
to reduce the total burden on IT staff and users alike, and dispersed
imaging servers would not achieve that. So, when CDW proposed providing
custom software imaging for Morris Communications’ Macs and shipping the
machines directly to user destinations, Mussman took a close, hard look,
and signed up.

“Having CDW image our Macs allows us to have them shipped directly to user
locations,” Mussman said, “and — with the configuration we have them
install — we can see each Mac and manage it from our central office in
Augusta as soon as someone plugs it into their local area network. We have
virtually eliminated the time burden from new machine configuration,
including the training and support we formerly needed to give local
personnel. Plus, we have more consistency of Mac configurations — hence,
lower support costs — across our system.”

CDW’s custom software imaging system enables the Morris Communications’ IT
team to update their specified image with a single FTP upload, and CDW
automatically incorporates all Apple software updates directly to the
customer’s standard image.

“Within one week of any configuration update we make,” Mussman concludes,
“the new image is in circulation on all new machines, and our central
management capabilities allow us to retrofit key updates easily to
previously installed machines.”

“System control, quality installation and timely delivery are common
objectives that our customers present to us,” said CDW’s Lillis. “CDW’s
Technology Services organization strives continually to understand
customers’ business requirements and help their IT teams stay focused on
solving mission-critical challenges.”

For more information about CDW’s Apple custom software imaging services and
a virtual tour of CDW’s Configuration Center, please visit

About CDW

CDW is a leading provider of technology solutions for business, government
and education. Ranked No. 39 on Forbes’ list of America’s Largest Private
Companies, CDW features dedicated account managers who help customers
choose the right technology products and services to meet their needs. The
company’s technology specialists offer expertise in designing customized
solutions, while its advanced technology engineers can assist customers
with the implementation and long-term management of those solutions. Areas
of focus include notebooks, desktops, printers, servers and storage,
unified communications, security, wireless, power and cooling, networking,
software licensing and mobility solutions.

CDW was founded in 1984 and as of December 31, 2007 employed approximately
6,300 coworkers. In 2007, the company generated sales of $8.1 billion. For
more information, visit

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