The eBook every Windows Engineer should read – Deploying and Supporting Applications on Windows 64-Bit

While only a few years ago the 64-bit version of the Windows client would only be installed on special purpose systems, nowadays it has become the de facto standard for most OEM’s and Enterprises. In 2010 Microsoft published some numbers on their Windows blog indicating that in June 46% of the clients running Windows 7 and use Windows Update were running Windows 7 64-Bit. At the same time Gartner published a report saying that by Read More …

ToolTip: Adding your AD stored picture to your profile picture with ADUserTile

Back in august 2011 I wrote about a utility called AD Photo Edit which allows you to upload your personal picture into Active Directory. Today I want to share with you another utility I came across called ADUserTile. ADUserTile checks if you have a picture stored within the Active Directory thumbnailPhoto attribute and sets that picture as your profile picture within Windows 7 so it becomes visible at the logon screen and the Windows Desktop. Read More …

How to prevent pending updates from installing when shutting down Windows

The meeting should have finished since 10 minutes but they keep on talking, you look at your watch and notice that you only have a few minutes until you need to leave the office so that you catch your train. Finally the call ended and you shutdown your machine, but then you get that message “Please do not power off or unplug your machine. Installing update 1 of 5”. Great, that train is probably going Read More …

Scheduled Tasks for Windows Games

When opening the Windows Task Scheduler you might see a Task called “UpdateCheck_” located within the Games folder of the Task Scheduler Library. To enable or disable this Task open the “Game Explorer” within Windows and then select options. When selecting “Automatically check online for updates and news, then notify me when the’re available” a scheduled Task is automatically being created. When selecting “Never check online for updates or news, I’ll do it manually” the Read More …

Observations for Windows 7 Service Pack 1 Error 0x800f0a12

During the past days I have been manually updating a few Windows 7 clients and on two of them I received the error 0x800fa12. When clicking on the Go online link Microsoft mentions the several reasons that could lead to this error. The system partition isn’t automatically mounted, or made accessible to Windows, during startup. A hard disk containing the system partition was removed prior to beginning SP1 installation. Windows is running on a storage Read More …

Removing Backup Files Created during Windows 7 Service Pack 1 Installation

For the Windows Vista Service Packs there was vsp1cln.exe (SP1) and compcln.exe (SP2) to cleanup the backup files created during the Service Pack installation. For Windows 7 Microsoft did not provide a separate cleanup tool, but instead leverages the windows-build-in DISM tool. To remove the backup files created during the Windows 7 Service Pack 1 installation run the following command from an elevated command prompt. dism.exe /online /cleanup-image /spsuperseded After successful completion you should get Read More …

Exporting Windows Driver Store Information into Excel

To obtain detailed information about a particular driver that is prestaged within the Windows 7 driver store, you can run the following command. Dism /online /get-driverinfo /driver: <path to driver inf file> Now there is quite a lot of interesting information in here, imagine you are working on a Windows 7 project and you want to know if a particular device is supported by the Windows 7 build in drivers. Of course you can do Read More …

Managing Wireless Configuration with NETSH

Today when I was using the netsh command to configure some firewall settings, I noticed that it also has options for WLAN. (Yes you never stop learning). When opening a command prompt and executing NETSH Wlan Help you get the following options. add            – Adds a configuration entry to a table. connect        – Connects to a wireless network. delete         – Deletes a configuration entry from a table. disconnect     – Disconnects from a wireless network. dump           Read More …

Retrieve Group Policy size in SYSVOL folder with PowerShell

Needless to say that there are quite some benefits in using a central store for Group Policies, one of them is that you can prevent the so-called SYSVOL bloat. A good description of the SYSVOL bloat is described here. So how much size do my GPOs currently consume within the SYSVOL folder? I asked myself that question a few days ago and ended up with let’s say my first version of the GetGPOSize PowerShell script. Read More …

ReadTip: General (Windows) activation concepts (KMS/MAK)

A great article from Kevin Ledman – Microsoft Platforms Support, covering the following topics around Windows activation: What is KMS? What is MAK? What do you consider your ‘current operating systems? How do I know what I have available to me? I see both keys on the volume website, so I guess I have both options. Now what? I don’t have enough machines to use KMS, so I’ll use MAK. What do I do now? Read More …