Deploying ConfigMgr Current Branch in Azure Dev Test Lab

Remember the days when you spend hours if not days just to get a lab environment in place and any time you wanted to use the environment again, you spend another couple of hours to get It updated. About 3 years ago I started to make more use of Azure based compute to run my virtual machines, that I use for technology learning and research activities. Initially created the virtual machines through the portal, but Read More …

Installing Software using Collection Commander

In the past days I had to provision a number of clients for testing purposes. A specific set of software also needed to be installed on these clients. At our company when deploying software to computers, the deployment for none mandatory software is always set to “Available” so that users can choose themselves when to install the software via the Software Center. I did not want to logon to each machine and initiate the installation Read More …

How to generate random computer names for lab deployments using SCCM OSD

For my lab environment I use the below described approach to generate random computernames for my clients. The script does the following: Read the Task Sequence Package Name Based on the name set the appropriate prefix Generate a random number between 100 and 1000 Generate the new computer name based on Prefix + random number To implement this do the following: Put the script listed below into a package Add the script to the TS Read More …

Repurpose PCs with Windows ThinPC

Many companies nowadays take advantage of some sort of VDI type solutions. In some cases where all of the users applications are made available within this environment, there is no need for providing them with a fully loaded desktop or notebook hence the reason why companies are considering the use of Thin Clients. In the long run the use of real thin clients definitely makes sense, not only are they usually cheaper than normal desktops Read More …

How to prepare an Office 2013 Click-to-Run deployment

With the release of the Office 2013 preview Microsoft also made available the Office Deployment Tool for Click-to-Run deployments. Although we here a lot about Click-to-Run these days, it’s not something totally new. Microsoft first introduced this with Office 2010 but it didn’t get that much attention within enterprise environment. For Office 2013 I can imagine that this will change. Microsoft describes Click-to-Run as following: Office 2013 Preview Click-to-Run is a technology that reduces the Read More …

How to setup KMS on Server 2012 for activating Office 2013 Preview

Hey there, it’s been a while since I wrote the last blog post, but that is because I spend 2 excellent weeks at an Italian beach with my family and enjoyed “dolce far niente”. Now and then I did read some tweets so of course got notice of the Office 2013 Preview Microsoft released earlier last week. So now that I’m back I have started reading through the various documentations and so I came across Read More …

Adobe introduces new Update Mechanism for Adobe Flash Player

A few days ago Adobe released a security update for Adobe Flash player and with that update Adobe also introduced a new mechanism for Flash Player updates. When deploying Adobe Flash player within a controlled corporate environment you most likely want to prevent the player from automatically updating itself or show notifications about a new version being available. When installing Adobe Flash Player 11.2 you will find the following: A new Scheduled Task called Adobe Read More …

Skype Group Policy Settings

Just recently one of our customers requested the Skype (Business version) Application to be packaged for software distribution, so I wondered what the status is these days with regard to locking down Skype with Group Policy. Well the results are sobering. Despite the fact that Skype is part of Microsoft since a while, there has not been much progress in making Skype more Group Policy aware. The settings that can be configured using Group Policy Read More …

Keep track of Global and Regional Windows 7 deployment status

During this week there have been various reports about Windows 7 passing Windows XP in the U.S. The numbers used come from StatCounter a web analytics service. While Windows 7 has passed Windows XP in the U.S, we’re not yet there globally. Worldwide Windows 7 Deployment Status Source: Global Stats If you’re interested finding out how Windows 7 does in your region, simply go to StatCounter and select your region. Beside the operating system, you 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 …