Extracting the User Name From a Computer

By Garth Jones This question was asked in the Microsoft TechEd forum, “How do I get the user name from the PC name when the PC name has two different formats (XX-XX-XXX-XXXXXXX-X and XX-XX-XXX-XXXXXXX)?” In this particular case an extra character was added to certain PCs to indicate that they were rebuilt in order to avoid duplicate PC names in...

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UI++ Open Beta Released

UI++ (formerly known as OSD++) version 2.0.1.0 has been released. This is the first open beta and available for anyone and everyone to download and use. Years in the making (yes years — I’ve been dragging my feet and getting distracted by work, life, and the World Cup), I’ve finally gotten to the point where UI++ is feature complete enough to release for general use. There are still features on the way and a few bugs I’m sure. The download on the project page contains everything you need to get…read more

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Remove Old Objects From AD and Configuration Manager

By Garth Jones System Center Configuration Manager is a huge product and the easiest way to get all clients into ConfigMgr is to enable AD System Discovery (ADSD) which will discover all devices within the domain. However, doing this can expose issues that already exist within Active Directory (AD). When ADSD is enabled, ConfigMgr Administrators generally discover the entire domain...

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What if Windows 8.1 had intelligence and no-one cared?

I am currently working on a Windows 8.1 deployment that will end up on quite a few tablets used in retail stores. Interesting project from a requirements perspective, because usually I never had to worry about machines being stolen by customers that much New Feature in Windows 8.1 Update Of course, I am deploying Windows 8.1 Update (latest and greatest!) to these tablets which is easy. Create a Build & Capture Task Sequence in MDT and afterwards deploy it with whatever you like. I have to stick to MDT as a deployment tool for the time being, as the customer has not yet upgraded their ConfigMgr environment to 2012 R2. … Continue reading

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Total Usage for All Metered Software Programs Query Matches the Executable Name

By Garth Jones I noticed something interesting in one of the built-in reports, Total usage for all metered software programs, found in System Center 2012 Configuration Manager (CM12), so I thought that I would share it with all of you. Sometime before I ran this report, a software metering rule for Microsoft® Windows® Operating System – cmd.exe – 6.1. (1033)...

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Introduction to the ConfigMgr Servicing Extension

Microsoft recently released the BETA version of the Configuration Manager Servicing Extension to the ConfigMgr Console. It is available to download via Connect. https://connect.microsoft.com/ConfigurationManagervnext/Downloads/DownloadDetails.aspx?DownloadID=53752 I have really enjoyed the recently little ‘add-ons’ and utilities Microsoft has been releasing for ConfigMgr. Support Center being the first, and now the Servicing Extension. Installation The installation is just an .msi, so you can deploy this to...

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Windows Update Agent: Stand-alone Installer Returns

Not sure if it was my griping, kicking, screaming, and general whining to the right people (let’s just say it was), but someone finally came to their senses on the team that controls the Windows Update Agent (WUA) at Microsoft. Today they released an updated stand-alone installer that can be pushed out by ConfigMgr to update the WUA to the latest version; this is detailed in a blog post released on the ConfigMgr Team Blog and KB2887535. This effectively makes the following two posts on this blog OBE (for now at least):

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What is a Management Information Format (MIF) File?

By Garth Jones Whether you are using Configuration Manager 2012, 2007, or SMS there are two different types of Management Information Format (MIF) files (sort of). The first type of MIF file that I am referring to is defined in the Configuration Manager 2007 docs as the following: “Management Information Format (MIF) files can be used to extend hardware inventory...

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