UI++ 2.8.2.2 Released

The latest update is here with some very nice new features (if I do say so myself).

Check it out here: UI++

Also remember that for support, suggestions, hints, samples, discussions, or whatever concerning UI++, please visit the forums.

OSD Frontends Series

My OSD Frontends three part series was released on the 1E blog a few months back; check it out:

Office 365 Inventory

With the addition of update channels to Office 365 and the self-controlled update mechanism in Office 365 Click to Run, keeping track of what versions and channels are in use in your environment is an important task. Unfortunately, there’s no registry value that simply says “Current Channel” or “Deferred Channel” or any other simple indicator that I could find. After a fair amount of both Binging and Googling, I stumbled across a forum post that contained exactly what was needed. Read more…

Cross-site Images in ConfigMgr

If you create your OS images using ConfigMgr one potential issue is that the ConfigMgr client agent is embedded in your image. In and of itself, this isn’t a huge deal if you are also deploying the image to systems that will be managed in that same ConfigMgr site or hierarchy. If however, you need to use that image in another site or hierarchy, say for example in a lab environment, then you will run into issues during the deployment task sequence with many tasks. Read more…

Uninstall Software En Masse

Every now and then, you may have the need to uninstall software, not just a single version but all versions of a certain product from your systems; e.g., QuickTime or Adobe Reader. Because these products are common components, you may have many different versions installed across your organization and because of these many different versions, you can’t just use a single command-line to uninstall them all. Read more…

The Unspoken Upgrade Requirement

When upgrading to Configuration Manager (ConfigMgr) Current branch (CB) or even implementing it from scratch, there is an unspoken requirement. It’s not really a requirement for ConfigMgr itself, but more of a requirement for WSUS. This requirement comes into play if you plan to use the new Windows 10 servicing feature in ConfigMgr CB. The servicing feature enables ConfigMgr CB to deploy in-place upgrades to Windows 10 systems using servicing plans which in turn use the software updates feature set behind the scenes. Read more…

Boot Image Backgrounds

To me aesthetics (even if I can’t spell that without the help of a spell-checker) are very important; basically, if it “looks” shoddy, haphazard, or thrown together, it probably is. This goes for things like a GUI (and is the reason I worked hard on making UI++ *look* polished as well as actually working well) and for things like the backgrounds shown during operating system deployment (OSD). For every customer that I’ve ever worked with, I’ve created a custom set of boot image backgrounds for this very reason (some better than others of course). Read more…

Why You Should Disable Automatic Updates

A perfect example of why you should disable automatic updates using group policy, script, compliance settings or any other means at your disposal when using Configuration Manager for Software Updates (aka patching). Note this doesn’t mean disabling the Windows Update service, it means as stated, disable Automatic Updates. Read more…

Remote Systems Management in Configuration Manager

Managing remote systems, i.e., those not directly connected to your internal network, is a challenge best not overlooked for multiple reasons including security. With Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager (ConfigMgr) and Microsoft Intune, you have multiple options to achieving this. Note that all of these of course require an active Internet connection on the client as there’s no magic, universal Ethernet so that is something that could be said for each of these.

The below summarizes the different approaches organizations use or may consider to manage these remote systems using Microsoft’s management technologies. Read more…

Ugh: CCMSETUP Error Codes

One of the things I’ve lamented and heaped scorn onto in the past is the use of non-standard error codes for processes and installers in particular. Why? Well, if a process or installer returns a standard error code, it’s pretty easy to figure out what that error code means using one of the techniques I described in one of my older posts appropriately titled Error Codes. If, however, a non-standard error code is returned, how is anyone supposed to know what it means especially if the codes aren’t documented by the vendor. Read more…

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