Friday, October 2, 2009

Howto: Edit network card bindings in Windows Server 2008

"Figuring out how to edit the order of NIC bindings on a Windows 2008 Server took quite a bit of Googling. It seems that you need to know a secret key combination to be able to view the Advanced tab, where the option to edit the NIC bindings is located.
To edit the network card binding order in Windows Server 2008:
Login to the server with administrative credentials
Click Start > Control Panel > Network and Sharing Center
On the left hand side select Manage network connections
Press Alt+N to display the Advanced menu
Select Advanced Settings. On the Adapters and Bindings tab, highlight your NIC and use the arrows on the right hand side to adjust it’s binding order.
You can also access the Network Connections screen directly by clicking Start > Run , typing ncpa.cpl and pressing Enter"

Using Winsat.exe in Windows Server 2008 as a performance benchmarking tool

"Microsoft has the Windows System Assessment Tool (Winsat) available for download that can assess a computer’s ability to run Windows Vista. This tool provides a wealth of information on you hardware’s horsepower, plus it’s scriptable. It’s designed to run under Windows Vista, but can be run under Windows Server 2008 as well. Here’s how to do it.
1. Dowload the Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor utility

2. Use Universal Extractor’s (uniextract) MSI method to extract the files from the .msi package

3. Copy winsat.exe to the c:\windows\system32 directory on the Windows 2008 server

4. Open an elevated command prompt and change to the c:\windows\system32 directory. There’s many different hardware components you can benchmark, but the following example benchmarks sequential reads on drive C:

winsat disk -seq -read -drive c

See the Technet command reference for Winsat for details on all tests winsat can perform, such as:

winsat dwmAssesses the ability of a system to display the Aero desktop effects.
winsat d3dAssesses the ability of a system to run Direct 3D applications, such as games.
winsat memAssesses system memory bandwidth by simulating large memory to memory buffer copies.
winsat diskAssesses the performance of disk drives.
winsat cpuAssesses the performance of the CPU(s).
winsat mediaAssesses the performance of video encoding and decoding (playback) using the Direct Show framework.
winsat mfmediaAssesses the performance of video decoding (playback) using the Media Foundation framework.
winsat featuresEnumerates relevant system information.
winsat formalRuns a set of pre-defined assessments and saves the data in an XML fil"

Windows 2008 don;t show locked user Name

"Normally when a Windows workstation or server is locked, you’ll see something similar to the following Windows Security message:
This computer is in use and has been locked.

Only DOMAIN\USER (user name) or an administrator can unlock this computer.

To not show the name of the user who has locked a computer, the following can be defined in a workstation level GPO

Computer Configuration\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\Security Options\Interactive logon: Display user information when the session is locked.

There are three choices if you enable this policy:

User display name, domain and user names (default setting)
User display name only
Do not display user information

Besides being able to apply this to Active Directory GPOs, this setting appears in the local security policy on my Windows XP SP3 VM. The setting is not available on my XP SP2 laptop, but I see from KB837022 there is a hotfix that corrects this problem in XP SP2.

Alternatively, the following DWORD can be created in the registry of XP SP2, Windows Vista, and Windows Server 2008 machine to accomplish the same thing:


User display name, domain and user names = 1
User display name only = 2
Do not display user information =3

You need to restart the machine for the change to take effect.

You may also be interested in the related Computer Configuration\Windows Settings\Security Settings\Local Policies\Security Options\Interactive logon: Do not display last user name setting. This security setting determines whether the name of the last user to log on"

Check windows uptime stats w/ Uptime.exe

"There is a very useful Windows command that Microsoft didn’t include in any version of windows but should have. This is the uptime command. There is a knowledge base article here. It was released back in the Windows NT days, but still works on all current versions of windows. I have found this to be an easy way to find out the uptime of the windows servers I maintain without have to log on to the box.

To install just download uptime.exe and place it in the windows directory. Then run it from the command line.

uptime /? will give a listing of all the options and uptime /help will give detailed instructions.
UPTIME, Version 1.01
(C) Copyright 1999, Microsoft CorporationUptime [server] [/s ] [/a] [/d:mm/dd/yyyy /p:n] [/heartbeat] [/? /help]
server Name or IP address of remote server to process.
/s Display key system events and statistics.
/a Display application failure events (assumes /s).
/d: Only calculate for events after mm/dd/yyyy.
/p: Only calculate for events in the previous n days.
/heartbeat Turn on/off the system's heartbeat
/? Basic usage.
/help Additional usage information.Uptime works by checking the windows event logs for startup and shutdown times. Running uptime with the /s switch will provide more detailed statistics as shown below. If the event log has been cleared or is corrupted uptime will not show correct stats.
I have found it helpful to set up .bat files with the servers I want to check. This then gives me a quick list of the uptime of various servers. It is quite a useful command. I’m not sure why Microsoft didn’t just stick it in the directory with all their other comma"

Thursday, October 1, 2009

WSH Scripting Tools

"WSH Scripting Tools
WSH Scripting Tools
ProductDescriptionProgrammer / ManufacturerDownloadPurchase
Admin Script EditorEditoriTripoli
ADSI ScriptomaticADSI query generatorScripting GuysFree
AxScripterIDEIEInspector Software LLC
BrineSoft Script EditorEditorBrineSoft
CodeLobsterEditorCodeLobster Software
EditPad LiteEditorJGSoftFree for non-commercial use
EditPad ProEditorJGSoft
HtaEditHTA editor/IDEAdersoft
HTA GeneratorHTA template generatorJ. LibensonFree
HTA HelpomaticHTA code generatorScripting GuysFree
(validation required)
JsEditJScript editor/IDEAdersoft
KS-Soft WMI ExplorerWMI browserKS-SoftFree
Log Parser 2.2Universal query tool to text-based data, Event Logs, Registry and Active DirectoryMicrosoftFree
Notepad++EditorNotepad++ teamFree
(donations welcome)
OLE/COM Object ViewerObject browser & testerMicrosoftFree
(validation required)
PrimalScript Scripting IDE (Standard, Professional & Enterprise Editions)IDESapien
PSPadEditorJan FialaFree
(donations welcome)
Sapien WMI ExplorerWMI browserSapien TechnologiesFree
Script Debugger (NT 4 & later)WSH debugging environmentMicrosoftFree
(validation required)
Script Debugger (Win98/Me)WSH debugging environmentMicrosoftFree
(validation required)
Script Debugger IDEIDEStas Semenov
Script EncoderEncode your scriptsMicrosoftFree
(validation required)
ScriptomaticWMI query generator & testerScripting GuysFree
(validation required)
String-O-MaticConvert, escape, unescape, encode & decode stringsAlex K. AngelopoulosFree
System Scripting RuntimeRun scripts as servicesFranz Krainer
Term-O-MaticModified version of the Scriptom"

How to Configure Windows Server 2008 for Site Systems

How to Configure Windows Server 2008 for Site Systems: "How to Configure Windows Server 2008 for Site SystemsUpdated: April 1, 2009
Applies To: System Center Configuration Manager 2007
When Configuration Manager 2007 SP1 site systems will be installed on Windows Server 2008 computers, additional configuration changes might be required to ensure successful installation and operation.
The procedures in this topic can be used to configure Windows Server 2008 to support Configuration Manager 2007 SP1 site system installation.
To Install Internet Information Services (IIS) to support Configuration Manager 2007 SP1 site systems on Windows Server 2008 Computers
This procedure describes how to install Internet Information Services (IIS) 7.0 Windows Server 2008 to support the following site system roles:
Management point.

Background Intelligent Transfer Service (BITS)-enabled distribution point.

Reporting point.

Software Update Point.

Server locator point.

Fallback status point.

To install and configure WebDAV for IIS 7.0 to support management point and BITS-enabled distribution point site system computers
Because WebDAV IIS extensions required for the management point and BITS-enabled distribution point site system roles are not installed by default with IIS 7.0, WebDAV extensions must be manually installed and configured after installing IIS 7.0.
To add Remote Differential Compression for site server and branch distribution point computers
If a site system will be used only to host the site server or branch distribution point site system roles, IIS is not required. However, site servers and branch distribution point site systems require Remote Differential Compression (RDC) to generate package signatures and perform signat"

ERROR: Cannot find path for destination inbox SMS_AMT_PROXY_COMPONENT on server REGISTRY

**ERROR: Cannot find path for destination inbox SMS_AMT_PROXY_COMPONENT on server REGISTRY
This error is found on secondary servers running Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM or ConfigMgr) 2007 SP1.

Solution is similar to John Marcum's post here

Error from mpfdm.log:
Verifying local MP outbox directory E:\Program Files\Microsoft Configuration Manager\MP\OUTBOXES\ for Asset Intelligence KB Manager exists... SMS_MP_FILE_DISPATCH_MANAGER 7/16/2009 11:25:19 AM 240 (0x00F0)
**ERROR: Cannot find path for destination inbox Asset Intelligence KB Manager on server REGISTRY SMS_MP_FILE_DISPATCH_MANAGER 7/16/2009 11:25:19 AM 240 (0x00F0)
Worker thread [Asset Intelligence KB Manager] cannot update environment so skiping outbox processing. SMS_MP_FILE_DISPATCH_MANAGER 7/16/2009 11:25:19 AM 240 (0x00F0)
Updating environment... SMS_MP_FILE_DISPATCH_MANAGER 7/16/2009 11:25:19 AM 2272 (0x08E0)
Verifying local MP outbox directory E:\Program Files\Microsoft Configuration Manager\MP\OUTBOXES\ for SMS_AMT_PROXY_COMPONENT exists... SMS_MP_FILE_DISPATCH_MANAGER 7/16/2009 11:25:19 AM 2272 (0x08E0)
**ERROR: Cannot find path for destination inbox SMS_AMT_PROXY_COMPONENT on server REGISTRY SMS_MP_FILE_DISPATCH_MANAGER 7/16/2009 11:25:19 AM 2272 (0x08E0)
Worker thread [SMS_AMT_PROXY_COMPONENT] cannot update environment so skiping outbox processing. SMS_MP_FILE_DISPATCH_MANAGER 7/16/2009 11:25:19 AM 2272 (0x08E0)
Updating environment... SMS_MP_FILE_DISPATCH_MANAGE"

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Difference between bat and cmd

"I've occasionally thought on the difference between cmd and bat, and from an execution point of view I didn’t think there was any. But it turns out a few commands can modify the execution path of batch files, because they modify the errorlevel differently based on whether they were executed as a .bat or .cmd.

The comment that I did find from Microsoft (the source was MZ according to the signature block!)

The differences between .CMD and .BAT as far as CMD.EXE is concerned are: With extensions enabled, PATH/APPEND/PROMPT/SET/ASSOC in .CMD files will set
ERRORLEVEL regardless of error. .BAT sets ERRORLEVEL only on errors.

If you save the text below as test.bat and test.cmd, and then run each from a command prompt, you see two different results. Note that command extensions are enabled by default on XP, a requirement for this behavioural difference.

I saw several references to bat running under 16-bit VDM and cmd running under 32-bit when executed from a shortcut, however I couldn’t reproduce this on XP SP2.

In addition, apparently 9x days and before there was only bat? And then with NT CMD was introduced, and running the same .bat file on 9x and NT definitely had different results, so having two different extensions made it less likely to accidently run a cmd written for NT on a 9x box if you were interoperating between the two. This sounds plausible, but I can't remember those sorts of details that far back.

I hope this doesn’t excite anyone.

:: When called from a cmd, 'set' resets errorlevel, whereas when called from a bat the errorlevel from the previous command is returned.
:: The four examples below show this in different ways, two calling a subrou"

Monday, September 28, 2009

Testing management points the Configuration Manager 2007 way - Jeff Gilbert's Web blog at

Testing management points the Configuration Manager 2007 way - Jeff Gilbert's Web blog at "Testing management point connectivity is just one of those things that SMS/ConfigMgr admins need to do on a regular basis. You can always peruse the mpcontrol.log to check management point health, but to make it easier, the product team has provided some handy test urls that can be used instead of reviewing the mpcontrol.log all the time.
Using the management point test urls is a pretty old tip. It's documented in a ton of places including the SMS 2003 FAQ, the Configuration Manager 2007 documentation, and a myriad of other Web locations. However, there is a catch when using these test urls in Configuration Manager sites that may not seem obvious at first and is a change from SMS 2003 behavior. I noticed this while working on something in my lab so I figured it would be a good tip to pass along.
When testing management point connectivity in SMS 2003 sites, you just open up a Web browser instance and go to: http:///sms_mp/.sms_aut?mplist. If all is well with the management point you will see:

(Yes, I know there's nothing there...that's a good thing for SMS 2003 sites and what you should see if the management point is responding to http requests )
In Configuration Manager sites, you actually do see something when you browse to the test urls and Don Hite has done a nice job documenting some of that behavior in his blog already.
So, in SMS 2003 sites, seeing nothing is good and something (IIS errors) is bad. In Configuration Manager sites, seeing something is good and nothing (IIS errors) is bad...that sounded a lot clearer in my head.
Anyway, moving on. If you browse to that"

SCCM 2007 R3

"Announcing System Center Configuration Manager 2007 R3
Today, the System Center team is excited to share with you our plan to release System Center Configuration Manager 2007 R3. This new release of the ConfigMgr is packed with some extremely cool features, which over the coming months we plan to share with you in different ways.
Recent shifts in the world economy have brought new focus on IT departments, and also to technology investment. Organizations are being pressured to do more with less, while at the same time manage an increasing range of working scenarios, mobility requirements, and business demands. Through all of this, they need to maintain security levels, answer compliance challenges and address the growing Green IT landscape.
As organizations look to reduce financial costs and environmental impacts, power management is proving to be a successful approach. The payback for power management is clear – when a PC is using less power it translates directly into reduced operational costs – either directly through reduced energy consumption or from a growing number of electrical companies that offer rebates to companies that can prove enforcement of centralized power management policies. In addition, continuous PC power management pays environmental dividends measured in terms like Kwh, or CO2 emissions savings.
Forrester estimates that more than 90% of firms are implementing or considering PC power management. Despite the advanced capabilities provided in Windows Vista and Windows 7, The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates that no more than 10% of all enterprise PCs in use have their power management capabilities turned on today. Without centra"

System Center Configuration Manager 2007 | “Announcing System Center Configuration Manager 2007 R3” - Blog de AurĂ©lien BONNIN [EXAKIS]

System Center Configuration Manager 2007 R3

There are a few areas of focus for ConfigMgr R3, with the main engineering effort concentrating on Power Management. Here are the goals for this feature:
Power Management
The goal of this capability is to enable Configuration Manager to further reduce the operational costs of IT by providing basic power management features native to the product. Our approach is based on 3 primary areas:
A. Help the organization plan a power strategy by monitoring current power state and consumptions and reporting on machine utilization trends, current power settings and current energy consumption
B. Enable the Administrator to easily create, deploy and enforce specific power settings using the existing ConfigMgr infrastructure
−Ability to set peak and non-peak schedules
−Ability to remediate settings if changed
−Ability to opt out machines from power policy
C. Provide the business meaningful report formats that are relevant to Power Management
An effective approach to power management needs to maximize power policy deployment while minimizing the impact to the end-user. System Center Configuration Manager helps customers further reduce their operational costs by adding new in box capability to their ConfigMgr infrastructure, and by seamlessly enabling power management client agent services to their existing Collection landscape.
In addition to power management, ConfigMgr R3 will provide customers with enhanced scale and performance support above current numbers.