How to configure and deploy local Group Policy settings for ThinKiosk

  In my previous post Repurpose PCs with Windows ThinPC I used Andrew Morgan’s ThinKiosk to replace the default Windows Shell to limit the user’s access to the local machine. ThinKiosk can be configured via the command line, the Registry and via Group Policy. Now unless you like to write lengthy registry manipulation scripts, configuring the settings via Group Policy is definitely the way to go. When clients are member of a domain we would Read More …

ReadTip: PolicyPak Whitepapers

Jeremy Moskowitz, Group Policy MVP and founder of Policy Pak Software wrote up 3 Whitepapers I recommend reading. Why Group Policy Admins need PolicyPak Why SCCM Admins need PolicyPak 7 Dumb Things IT Pros do With Windows 7 & 8 Rollouts

The Group Policy Setting “Verbose vs normal status messages” has a new name in Windows 8

If you want to show your users more details of what is going on during start, logon, logoff and shutdown of a system you can enable a Group Policy setting that is called “Verbose vs normal status messages’ in Windows 7 and earlier versions of Windows, but in Windows 8 the setting has a new name and is now called “Display highly detailed messages”. You can find the setting under Computer Configuration / Administrative Templates Read More …

ReadTip: Group Policy Central Access Policies Extension Specification

If you are interested in Group Policy stuff, here’s a new Open Specifications Documentation for Group Policy: Central Access Policies Extension that appears to be something new coming with Windows 8. To be honest with you, I guess I need to read this doc a few more times, until I could really explain in detail what this is all about, Some other articles mentioning this are Exploring Windows Server 8: Dynamic Access Control and Windows Read More …

Windows 8 – New GPO stuff

I have just compared the C:\Windows\PolicyDefinitions folder on the Widows 8 preview build with a Windows 7 Enterprise build. And unless I missed one, the below ADMX/ADML files are new. AppxPackageManager.admx dam.admx DeviceCompat.admx EAIME.admx EarlyLaunchAM.admx EdgeUI.admx ExternalBoot.admx msched.admx ProximityCommon.admx srm-fci.admx UserState.admx WindowsHistoryVault.admx WinStoreUI.admx wlansvc.admx WPN.admx WPN.Provider.admx wwansvc.admx When you open the related ADML files stored under C:\Windows\PolicyDefinitions\en-US you will find some interesting hints about what these new policies are supposed to do. You will find Read More …

Group Policy Settings for Microsoft Lync 2010 Client

Just in case you missed this one, Microsoft released documentation and an ADM template for the Microsoft Lync 2010 client. The following settings can be configured. Specify transport and server Enable strict DNS naming for server name Configure SIP security mode Configure SIP compression mode Prevent users from running Microsoft Lync Allow storage of user passwords Require logon credentials Disable HTTP fallback for SIP connection Disable server version check Additional server versions supported Enable using Read More …

ToolTip: HIDECALC – Hiding Drives in Windows

Want to make a drive disappear in Windows or prevent users from accessing it? then here’s the tool you need. HIDECALC allows you to define the drives to hide or prevent access to. HIDECALC does not apply the change on the system itself, but provides various options for exporting the settings into the following formats: Group Policy ADMX or ADM format Registry File Kix Script PowerShell Script So here’s how this works. Launch HIDECALC, Define Read More …

Taking Group Policy beyond what’s in the box – Part2

In my previous post I provided a brief overview of how PolicyPak can take you beyond default Group Policy management. In today’s post I am going to show you how easy it is to get PolicyPak up and running in your test environment. You can test PolicyPak on a local computer or within an Active Directory environment. Now beside the awesome things PolicyPak can do, what I really like about this solution is that it Read More …

Taking Group Policy beyond what’s in the box – Part1

Group Policy is a fundamental part of a managed Windows infrastructure. Using Group Policy Objects (GPO) allows IT administrators to configure and lock down clients and servers providing a standardized and secure environment. But despite the fact that Group Policy technology is around since the introduction of Windows 2000 its use seems to be limited to the Windows operating system and Microsoft Application product suite. Unfortunately not many 3rd party software vendors provide built-in Group Read More …

How to disable Office Ribbon Items using Group Policy

Today I am going to show you how to disable a Ribbon Item using Group Policy, Okay, what’s the deal you might think, simply find the item within the Office GPO settings and enable it. Right,almost, it’s just that Microsoft didn’t list all possible settings within the Office ADMX/ADML file, probably because there are too many of them. But there is a setting called “Disable command bar buttons and menu items” that you can enable Read More …