WDS Deployment Checklist

Applies To: Windows Server 2008

The following table lists recommended actions an IT administrator should take to deploy Windows Desktop Search.

Action Done


Read the WDS Administration Guide.


Ensure your corporate system standards meet or exceed minimum the WDS system requirements for the target platform.


Determine your users' indexing needs:

  • What local, system level content should be indexed (Documents folders, cached e-mail, other folders)?

  • What departmental or group information available on other network shares or sites should be indexed?


Determine your plan for indexing email (for example, cached versus uncached).


Determine which version of WDS best supports your organizations needs.


Define the user groups you need for WDS Group Policy settings:

  • Which users should have access to each share or network resource?

  • What should the default indexing scope be for each group?

  • What high volume network resources should be restricted from indexing?

  • What should your policy settings be?


Determine whether your organization requires international versions of Multilingual User Interface (MUI) Packs, and download if needed.


Identify any add-ins your users might need to index their data.


Determine the deployment mode you want to use (attended, unattended, Group Policy). If you deploy using Group Policy, write a deployment wrapper that contains the WDS executable file.


Plan a pilot test:

  • Choose a controlled test environment using your company’s standard system image that includes the operating system and commonly installed software, resources, and back end.

  • Select one department or a small group of users for the test.


Begin the pilot test and monitor the following for any problems or issues:

  • Deployment methodology

  • Network load

  • Server loads

  • Software conflicts

  • User requirements and comments

  • Any unexpected errors or issues

  • User expectations of indexing

  • Requirements for helpdesk and end-user training

If the pilot test shows an abnormally high consumption of system resources or building the initial index takes a long time, your anti-virus software may be out of date. Consider updating your anti-virus software and re-testing, or re-test with the anti-virus temporarily turned off or Windows Desktop Search’s .exe excepted in a controlled, protected environment.


Plan enterprise-wide deployment:

  • Document successes and challenges of pilot test.

  • Resolve and document any outstanding issues.

  • Revise your deployment methodology, policies, access to resources, and other items as required.

  • Document a plan for enterprise-wide deployment.

See Also


WDS 3.01 Troubleshooting Guide