giving something back after taking a lot :-)

Maik Koster at myITforum.com

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UEFI and ConfigMgr 2012/MDT 2012 issues II – Partitions and applying the image

September 02, 2013

As mentioned in my last post about Bootable medias , I recently had to prepare some UEFI based Windows 8 deployments to different tablet devices. After I fixed the problem with the boot medias, I finally got them to boot and start the deployment process. However, it failed already a few minutes later. Digging into the log files lead to a problem with the “ Apply Operating System Image ” step and it turned out that the OSDisk property didn’t have a value. To be fair, this isn’t actually a plain ConfigMgr...  ... Read the full post or  be the first to comment. Filed under: , , ,

MDT Wizard Studio beta released

January 13, 2013

The MDT Wizard Editor is probably one of the most useful tool if it comes to editing the Lite Touch Wizard files. It especially simplifies the pretty tedious part of editing the xml files and the embedded HTML content of each wizard pane. However the current version of it dates back to October 2009 and with this didn’t support any of the changes, that came with MDT 2012 and MDT 2012 Update 1. One of the major changes between 2010 and 2012 has been, that in contrast to MDT 2010, all wizard panes are...  ... Read the full post or  be the first to comment. Filed under: ,

MDT Monitoring Deep Dive IV – Sending more information

August 21, 2012

In my post MDT Monitoring Deep Dive II – Consuming the data yourself , I showed you how you can write your own web service, that consumes the MDT monitoring information. The next thing we will cover is, how we can send even more information from MDT and also make use of a pretty hidden feature in this monitoring option I blogged about in the last post . Send additional information As we have seen in the last couple of posts, MDT will automatically send some information about the current deployment...  ... Read the full post or  be the first to comment. Filed under: , ,

MDT Monitoring Deep Dive III – Returning settings to a Computer

August 21, 2012

If you enable the MDT Monitoring, you also enable kind of a “hidden” feature, that will give you just another way of setting properties on computers that are being deployed. One of the most important tasks in MDT is the gather process. It collects information locally on the client computer like hardware info etc. It evaluates the rules configured in the customsettings.ini and can also query databases and web services or run additional scripts for this evaluation. Now, since MDT 2012, if you enabled...  ... Read the full post or  be the first to comment. Filed under: , ,

MDT Monitoring – Deep Dive I

July 16, 2012

The new monitoring feature is probably one of the most interesting and underestimated features of MDT 2012. In this version, its just some “initial” implementation, but it has great potential and in contrast to other custom extensions that have been available before, it’s tightly integrated and working out-of-the-box with support from Microsoft. What I won’t cover in this post is how to set it up and troubleshoot. As there has been some great posts already that cover all this in every detail. Please...  ... Read the full post or  be the first to comment. Filed under: , ,

New features in MDT 2012 – Download files from the internet

July 11, 2012

Sometimes it would be nice to be able to download some files from the internet or intranet during deployments. Maybe to get some updated tools like bginfo.exe or store some configuration or wizard files outside of your boot image etc. This is quite easy to achieve for files that are located on a network share, as MDT has some built-in support for this since quite some time already and I’ve recently blogged about the available functions for File-handling (see Extending the MDT Documentation - Some...  ... Read the full post or  be the first to comment. Filed under: , , ,

Handling lists in MDT web service calls – Adding Computers / Users to Active Directory groups

July 05, 2012

A common question if it comes to deployments is, how to add a computer (or user) to one or several Active Directory groups. As you probably know, I generally prefer using web services for any Active Directory related task, as this avoids a lot of typical issues like permission problems, adding ADSI to the WinPE etc. Luckily the Deployment Web Service , which is freely available on CodePlex , has some appropriate functions that allow us to fulfill this task. Adding a computer (or user) to a single...  ... Read the full post or  be the first to comment. Filed under: , , , ,

Extending the MDT Documentation - Some goodies from ZTIUtility.vbs – String and File handling

June 24, 2012

The Microsoft Deployment Toolkit comes with a pretty extensive and almost complete documentation, which is even more remarkable, as it’s a free tool. But even this almost complete documentation, it’s lacking some information that might be helpful for some of you. I’ll start with two things that are available in the ZTIGather.vbs. Why should you care? Well, ZTIGather.vbs is more or less THE core script, that is referenced by almost any other scripts. It holds all the publicly available classes for...  ... Read the full post or  be the first to comment. Filed under: , , ,

MDT Web FrontEnd Beta 2.0.2 published – Call for Help !

April 20, 2012

I just released Beta 2.0.2 of the MDT Web FrontEnd . As promised, I will keep on publishing new releases in short cycles, so you can have bug fixes and new features as soon as possible. This it going to be a very important update and I urge you to download Version 2.0.2 as soon as possible, as it contains a whole bunch of fixes. Especially the MDT Database configuration, ConfigMgr Discovery and Active Directory Site discovery were pretty flaky if using an Internet Explorer < 9. IE9 and FireFox...  ... Read the full post or  be the first to comment. Filed under: , , ,

Installing the new MDT Web FrontEnd Beta

April 18, 2012

As written in my last Blog Post , the first Beta of the MDT Web FrontEnd Version 2 has just been published. If you plan to test this version (what I really would appreciate), keep in mind, that it’s a Beta version. It shouldn’t be used in production. It’s provided “AS IS”, you know the game. The Beta has been tested on Windows Server 2008 R2 and Windows Server 2008 64 and 32 Bit. The only real requirement is the .Net Framework 4.   Just follow these few steps, to get the Beta running: - Download...  ... Read the full post or  be the first to comment. Filed under: , , , ,

MDT 2012 released - MDT Web FrontEnd Version 2 – First Beta released

April 17, 2012

A long time ago in a Deployment galaxy far, far away … only a few Jedi were left to fight the dark forces of manual operating system installations. They created powerful tools to support their fight and hardened them in tough battles against habit and ignorance. New young Jedis saw their heroic efforts, and joined their fight and over the years the light forces got stronger and stronger. Now its time for YOU to join. Today the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2012 has been released (Download at http...  ... Read the full post or  be the first to comment. Filed under: , , , ,

New Stuff in MDT 2012 – native VHD support

June 13, 2011

As probably most of you have seen already, the Beta 1 of the upcoming MDT 2012 has been published to connect ( Download link ) recently ( Announcement by Michael Niehaus ). Main intent for this update is enabling support for the upcoming ConfigMgr 2012. But the team also included a couple other updates into this release like a “prettier” wizard, Cross-Platform support , etc. However some of the bigger changes “under the hood” did happen on the part that handles all drive and disk related activities...  ... Read the full post or  be the first to comment. Filed under: , ,