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Thursday, 17 July 2014

Join Server 2012 R2 Core to your Domain

If you are using Server 2012 R2 Core and you wish to join it to the domain, then you can use this simple Powershell command to do it.

 Add-Computer -DomainName YOURDOMAIN.COM -Credentials DOMAIN\USERNAME -Restart  

Note that the -Restart command at the end will automatically restart your server once it has completed the joining process.

Also be aware that you should change YOURDOMAIN.COM to the domain name that you are trying to join and also change DOMAIN\USERNAME to domain admin credentials for the domain you are joining.


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Wednesday, 16 July 2014

How to enable Remote Desktop using Powershell

If you are using Windows 2012 R2 Core or if you just like using Powershell, then you may want to know how to enable Remote Desktop.

To do this, you should go into your Core server where you should see a command box. In here, type in Powershell and press enter. This will open up the Powershell console for you to use.

You should then enter the following three commands in order one after the other:

Enable Remote Desktop

 set-ItemProperty -Path 'HKLM:\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server'-name "fDenyTSConnections" -Value 0  

Allow incoming RDP on Windows Firewall

 Enable-NetFirewallRule -DisplayGroup "Remote Desktop"  

Enable secure RDP authentication

 set-ItemProperty -Path 'HKLM:\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server\WinStations\RDP-Tcp' -name "UserAuthentication" -Value 1    

Once you have done these three commands, you should then reboot your Core server and once it has come back up, you should now be able to gain Remote Desktop access to it.

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Monday, 14 July 2014

SCCM 2012 Client Stuck in Provisioning Mode

We recently have had issues with our Windows 7 operating system deployments seemingly not completing fully.

We were getting the following issues:
  • The ConfigMgr client was not fully installed – it was displaying the Site Mode as "Unknown"
  • The ConfigMgr client was not picking up a certificate - it was displaying as "None"
  • The _SMSTaskSequence folder remained on the largest partition and was not being deleted
  • Could not install anything from the Software Catalog
  • Could not remote onto the client
  • Tabs missing from the client control panel applet
The client control panel applet looked like this:

After going through various logs and searching the internet, we found that the problem was that after the client install during the task sequence, after a reboot from WinPE into Windows, the client itself was getting stuck in provisioning mode - a bit like a evaluation mode for the client so when into the main windows operating system, it will not function correctly.

So, how can it be fixed?

The problem is two registry keys that need to be amended after the client installation during the task sequence. So, immediately after the client installation step in your task sequence, you should create two Run Command Line steps. In the first step, you should call it "Turn off provisioning mode" and for the command line enter the following:

 REG ADD HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\CCM\CcmExec /v ProvisioningMode /t REG_SZ /d false /f  

So your first step should look like this:

For your second command line step, you should call it "Turn off System Task Excludes" and for the command line enter the following:

 REG ADD HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\CCM\CcmExec /v SystemTaskExcludes /t REG_SZ /d "" /f  

So your second step should look like this:

Once you have made these additions then save your task sequence and try another deployment, you should now find that this works perfectly!

If you also have a machine that is affected by this problem and do not want to re-image the machine, you can simply make these changes in the registry manually in Windows, reboot the machine and you should then find that the client will work.


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Sunday, 13 July 2014

Remove Windows XP End of Life Messages Utility

On April 8th 2014, Microsoft ended all support for Windows XP. They then released a number of Windows Updates that displays annoying messages on your desktop telling you that your operating system is now at its end of life. This is the Windows message:

The second is the Microsoft Security Essentials one:

We have been asked a number of times about how to remove these and we have now created a new utility that will help you to do this.



There is one problem with removing the Microsoft Security Essentials end of life message. If you have already installed Version then you cannot remove this message. Also, eventually, your system will update to this version so the best thing to do is to uninstall MSE and install another free anti-virus like Avast or Avira.

If you have not yet installed Version then this utility will work for you for the MSE part. The Windows end of life message should be able to be removed without issue using this utility.

You must have Dot Net 2.0 installed for this to work.


Once you have downloaded the file you should run the executable file to start the utility. You will then be presented with a utility that looks like this:

You should then click the buttons on the left hand side in relation to what you want to do. So, if you want to remove the Windows message, click the top button, if you want to remove the MSE message, click the bottom button.

Once you have done this, you should reboot your machine and you should now notice that the messages have not reappeared.


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Saturday, 12 July 2014

Adobe Flash Player Released - MSI Download

Adobe have released another update to their Adobe Flash Player software, this time taking it up to version

As always, you can download the executable file or get the MSI file so that you can load it into your Configuration Manager Software Catalog.

The update is also now available to import through System Center Update Publisher (SCUP) so you can inject it into your WSUS or Configuration Manager systems.

You can the download in all formats for all browsers for Windows and Mac directly from Adobe by clicking the download button below.



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