Author: Phil Schwan

Prepping for MMS 2013

I’m ready to get my geek on.  The Microsoft Management Summit (MMS) conference is always a marathon. Between the time difference (three hours), the information overload from the sessions and labs, the late nights out with vendors/clients/friends, and just the sheer walking mileage, you can find yourself completely exhausted in very short order. View from the Expo floor at MMS2010 My first tr...

Unlocking ConfigMgr 2012 Objects

During the normal course of peer review during an app implementation, we suddenly found ourselves without any ability to make changes.  The peer review engineer opened the app to check settings and was told he could not edit it because it was in use…by him! “Cannot edit the object, which is in use by ‘<username>’ at Site ‘<configmgr site>’.” Th...

Important ConfigMgr 2012 SP1 Hotfix Released (KB2801987)

There always seems to be a price to pay for jumping on the latest release quickly.  Many who rushed to download and install System Center 2012 Configuration Manager Service Pack 1 got a nasty little surprise in the form of failed client installation and OS deployments. The problem typically manifests itself in the client deployment logs (%windir%\ccmsetup\ccmsetup.log) with the following error: Co...

ConfigMgr 2012 SP1 Client Notification

One of the benefits (or shortcomings, depending on who you ask) of Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager is that it is a “pull-based” technology.  Communication between the client and server is initiated strictly from the client side, third party tools notwithstanding.  The result is that client traffic is necessarily randomized to an extent by the staggering of the policy refr...

Windows 8 IE10 File Download Crash

I’ve been very pleased so far working with Windows 8 Enterprise as my primary OS…save for one rather significant issue: Every time I attempted to initiate a file download in Internet Explorer 10, it would crash. This typically happened when another application attempted to make the call for the download, such as Chrysanth WebStory prompting to download the latest update or clicking on ...

ConfigMgr 2012 SP1 PowerShell Module – Getting Started

If you haven’t yet delved into the world of PowerShell for ConfigMgr administration, now is a great time!  The beta release of ConfigMgr 2012 SP1 includes a PowerShell module with some 300 cmdlets (get a list of them here) allowing you to peform all manner of functions from the PowerShell environment instead of using the admin console. (If you’ve already cut your teeth on PowerShell wi...

Windows 8 Client Hyper-V and ConfigMgr Hydration

As the details of Windows 8 features began emerging early this year, one item in particular immediately caught my attention: Client Hyper-V.  I’ve been a VMWare Workstation user for some eight years now and just never really felt comfortable with Virtual PC.  VMWare was great for individual machines for packaging, image build and capture, etc. but trying to bring up a functional lab environm...

Using Offline Updates with ConfigMgr 2012 OSD

One of the biggest advantages to using Configuration Manager to manage software updates is the ability to integrate them into the OS deployment process, enabling delivery of a more secure, up-to-date image to the end user.  When managing a Windows XP image, integrating software updates into your image meant a complete rebuild of the image.  Otherwise, you had to rely on the Install Software Update...

ConfigMgr 2012 SP1 New OSD Features

If you spend a lot of time doing OS deployment with Configuration Manager, you know there are a lot of changes and expanded functionality introduced with ConfigMgr 2012.  This presents a bit of a learning curve as the workflow process for many functions has changed.  The upcoming release of ConfigMgr 2012 SP1 brings some great new enhancements to the OS deployment functionality. PXE Support Defaul...

Disabling the Windows 8 Profile Creation Animation

It was only a matter of hours after the Windows 8 RTM bits hit the VLSC site before I was logging in to a Windows 8 Enterprise 64-bit virtual machine to start the test drive. About five seconds later I was rolling my eyes courtesy of the default profile creation animations: …and so on. Two thoughts immediately popped to mind: There’s no way I’m going to let enterprise users sit t...

ConfigMgr 2012 SMS SRS REPORTING POINT Component Failure

Ran into an interesting issue in the ConfigMgr 2012 lab today.  When I went into Monitoring and expanded the Reporting node, there weren’t any reports listed as available. I hadn’t yet gone into the Reporting since building the lab, so this was the first I was aware that something was wrong. I checked the System Status and sure enough the Reporting Point component was showing errors: E...

Windows 8 RTM and ConfigMgr 2012 RTM Client Push

As reported previously, System Center 2012 Configuration Manager does not yet fully support Windows 8 RTM and won’t until ConfigMgr 2012 SP1 is released.  For those who have worked with the Windows 8 Release Preview and Customer Preview versions, you may already have attempted to work with the ConfigMgr client on a few devices.  If you are just now working with Windows 8 in your ConfigMgr 20...