Obscurum per Obscurius

Explaining the obscure by means of the more obscure

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  • Blog Post: How to run DCDIAG and NETDIAG on Multiple Computers Using a Batch File

    I was onsite with a customer this week reviewing their Active Directory configuration. During the visit the system admin I was working with mentioned he needed to run DCDIAG and NETDIAG on every domain controller (DC) in his domain and collect the output to prepare for their upcoming migration to Office...
  • Blog Post: New SkyDrive Application is Available

    The new SkyDrive application was released today.  I was part of the beta test group and I can tell you the new application is great.  When it is installed it creates a folder named SkyDrive in your profile that synchronizes automatically to your cloud-based SkyDrive.  That is it. ...
  • Blog Post: App-V Service Restart Script

    This week I was working with my teammates troubleshooting an App-V server issue. The App-V service is getting hung and prevents any client connections. The fix the customer was using was to reboot the server because stopping/starting the App-V service (Application Virtualization Service) did not correct...
  • Blog Post: Backing Up MMC Settings

    One of the things I hate about switching computers is losing all my customized MMC settings especially the Saved Queries configured in Active Directory Users & Computers (ADUCs). A few days ago I switched cubes at my customer site and proceeded to reconfigure my new system. When I opened ADUCs for...
  • Blog Post: How to Create Custom Active Directory LDAP Searches

    A nice feature in Windows Server Active Directory is the ability for an administrator to create saved queries in Active Directory USers % Computers to return common information within the Directory. The queries you can create through the GUI are pretty basic so to get the real benefit you need to create...
  • Blog Post: Testing Global Catalog Server Connectivity

    Occasionally I'll run into a situation where a workstation hangs or fails when trying to retrieve information from Active Directory (AD). In some cases the problem presents itself when running DSQUERY to query for Active Directory data. In other cases it can a manifest itself as Exchange address book...
  • Blog Post: Customizing "SendTo" Context Menu

    I spend a lot of time helping people troubleshoot problems. In many cases the work consists of sitting next to someone saying "click this" or "open that" especially log and configuration files. Believe me when I tell you it takes a lot of patience sometimes to watch someone to right-click a file, select...
  • Blog Post: Windows 7 Tip and Tricks - A Must Read!

    As a Microsoft employee I have been using Windows 7 since the early internal betas. I have been impressed with the operating system (OS) since day one and it has improved with each iteration leading up to release. There are some nice, obvious user interface changes that have been made. Many of them are...
  • Blog Post: Who Is Logged In?

    A few months back one of my customers was trying use RDP to connect to a large number of desktop computers to manually install some security updates. If the computer was being used the admin had to wait until the person using the computer logged out and find another computer. Unfortunately there was...
  • Blog Post: Using a Logon Script to Install the SMS Advanced Client

    One of my customers has an extensive lab environment with multiple forests, domains and workgroup computers. SMS 2003 was deployed to help manage the configuration of all these different systems. Between the locked down security settings (no C$, ADMIN$ shares!) and the number separate forest/domains...
  • Blog Post: Configuring SMS to Work on Workgroup Computers and Computers in Other Domains (LMHOSTS)

    As described in the previous post the lab environment includes multiple forests, domains and workgroup computers. One of the nice things about SMS 2003 is the fact that once the SMS Client has been installed on a system, you "own" that system and can manage it from that day forward. In the previous post...
  • Blog Post: Who's in the Local Administrators Group?

    I was organizing files this weekend and ran across a script I created for a customer recently. They we trying to determine the membership of the local Administrators group on each computer on their network. The had determined that non-admin users were being added to the local Administrator group and...
  • Blog Post: Modifying Security on Active Directory Objects using a script

    I was working with a customer this week and we found some user objects in Active Directory had incorrect security settings. I put together a list of commands for the customer to use. I thought a few of the FOR command examples below were useful so here you go... These command can also be used in a...
  • Blog Post: Controlling Virtual Machines with a Script

    I discovered how easy it is to control virtual machines with a script this weekend. I have one server that I use to run virtual machines that I keep running all the time. When I patch this server, I need to shut down all VMs before it is restarted and then restart the VMs after the computer starts. After...
  • Blog Post: Useful Scripts

    I like to write scripts. I really enjoy automating some boring task and then walking away from it. Who knows, maybe deep down I secretly desire to be a programmer... Over the years I have written a number of scripts for customers from simple batch files to more complicated scripts to manage Active...
  • Blog Post: Enable Remote Desktop

    Remote Desktop is one of the greatest features added to the Windows operating system. It enables you to perform remote administration of servers from your desk or fix one of your kids computers from the couch. Of course it's only great if it is enabled on the computer you are trying to access. If you...
  • Blog Post: Automate Network Adapter Configuration using NETSH

    So I'm kind of lazy. Not in the "sleep late and don't go to work" slacker way, I just don't like doing dull r epetitive tasks if they can be automated in some way. As a rule if I have to do the same task more than a couple of times I'm writing a script (or getting someone else to do it). During the...
  • Blog Post: Remote Desktop Connection (akaTerminal Server) Keyboard Shortcuts

    I use Remote Desktop all day at work. It is especillay helpful when writing documentation. One of the problems I always run into is trying to remember which keyboard short you can use to capture a screen-shot in a TS session. Since I had to dig these up again today I decided to post them here where they...
  • Blog Post: Windows Live Favorites

    So I am an information junkie. When I surf the web I am constantly bookmarking things I'll use in the future ( OK sometimes). One of the biggest problems with bookmarks is having more than one computer. If you have more than one computer keeping your bookmarks synchronized is a pain. Until now. Windows...
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