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  • Blog Post: Understanding what the USMT 4.0 CONFIG manifests migrate (Part 1: Introduction)

    Hi folks, Ned here again. We've been asked many times to provide more specific information on what USMT migrates when using the included manifests and calling the OS' built-in manifests . We've touched on these details previously in the so-called " operating system components " listed under TechNet article...
  • Blog Post: Getting a CMD prompt as SYSTEM in Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008

    Ned here again. In the course of using Windows, it is occasionally useful to be someone besides… you. Maybe you need to be an Administrator temporarily in order to fix a problem. Or maybe you need to be a different user as only they seem to have a problem. Or maybe, just maybe, you want to be...
  • Blog Post: One-Stop Shop for Auditing in Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista

    Hi, Ned here again. I am frequently asked by customers (and Microsoft employees!) where they can get to all the useful Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista audit information. Unlike some of our other components, there’s no clear portal site on TechNet or MSDN that gives you everything in one fell...
  • Blog Post: How to Properly Disable Offline Files in Windows Vista

    Hi, it's Adam Conkle again from the Directory Services team. Today's posting covers how to correctly disable Offline Files in Windows Vista. I recently had a case where the customer was experiencing undesirable behavior with a file share only when the file server was accessed from their Windows Vista...
  • Blog Post: Special Groups Auditing via Group Policy Preferences

    Ned here again. Today I’m going to talk about a new feature of Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista called Special Groups auditing . While we’re in here, I’ll run through how we can use the new Group Policy Preferences (GPP) client-side extensions to make deploying this fast and easy...
  • Blog Post: Understanding what the USMT 4.0 CONFIG manifests migrate (Part 17: Vista Section H)

    This part covers the following config.xml components for Windows Vista: -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- < component displayname = " Date, Time, Language and Region " migrate = " yes " ID = " date_time_language_and_region " >...
  • Blog Post: Introducing Group Policy Preferences

    Hi, Mike here. Have you ever wanted to map a drive for specific users at logon—without using a logon script? Have you ever wanted to change the local administrator’s password on all your client computers? Have you ever wanted to add items to a user’s Start menu? Now you can with Windows...
  • Blog Post: New DNS and AD DS BPA’s released (or: the most accurate list of DNS recommendations you will ever find from Microsoft)

    Hi folks, Ned here again. We’ve released another wave of Best Practices Analyzer rules for Windows Server 2008 / R2, and if you care about Directory Services you care about these: AD DS rules update Info: Update for the AD DS Best Practices Analyzer rules in Windows Server 2008 R2 Download...
  • Blog Post: Understanding what the USMT 4.0 CONFIG manifests migrate (Part 2: XP Section A)

    This part covers the following config.xml components for Windows XP: -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- < component displayname = " WindowsSearchEngine-DL " migrate = " yes " ID = " http://www.microsoft.com/migration/1.0/migxmlext...
  • Blog Post: Windows Server 2008 SP1 and Windows Vista SP1 now UNSUPPORTED

    Ned here with the last word on this: Windows Server 2008 SP1 and Windows Vista SP1 are no longer supported. You must install Service Pack 2 to get updates and support from Microsoft going forward with those OSes. But me no buts. I made a helpful diagram of how to resolve this - or indeed any - Windows...
  • Blog Post: Understanding what the USMT 4.0 CONFIG manifests migrate (Part 11: Vista Section B)

    This part covers the following config.xml components for Windows Vista: -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- < component displayname = " Microsoft-Windows-TerminalServices-Manager-SnapIn-NonMSIL " migrate = " yes " ID = " http://www...
  • Blog Post: Deploying Legal Notices to domain computers using Group Policy

    Hi, Mike again. Every so often, I’ll talk with a customer wanting to deploy a legal notice to their workstations using Group Policy. Sounds simple, right? Well, it is actually a little tricky to make the legal notice work correctly. Here is a solution that I share with customers that want to do...
  • Blog Post: Windows Logon Options in Vista/2008: Part Two of Two

    Mike here. Blog time again… Previously, I wrote about two of the policy settings under the computer configuration. Today, I’ll finish writing about the Windows Logon Options policy category by covering the remaining policy setting under the computer configuration and all of the policy settings...
  • Blog Post: Cool Auditing Tricks in Vista and 2008

    Hi, Ned here again. Today I’m going to show some interesting new features of Auditing in Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 that can be used for troubleshooting problems or seeing what’s happening in your environment. I’ll be building upon some of the basic information Dave Beach...
  • Blog Post: Understanding what the USMT 4.0 CONFIG manifests migrate (Part 5: XP Section D)

    This part covers the following config.xml components for Windows XP: -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- < component displayname = " Network and Internet " migrate = " yes " ID = " network_and_internet " > < component displayname...
  • Blog Post: Friday Mail Sack: Peevish Nediquette Edition

    Hi folks, Ned here again. This week I talk about Vista’s hidden AD schema, SYSVOL migration mission control, kick-starting cached logon performance, USMT c'est la vie, foul-mouthed NetBIOS, DFSR do-over, and the usual random goo. What to do with a Version 39 (Vista Beta) AD Schema When...
  • Blog Post: Netmon, MPS, RODC's, and that new OS you might have heard about

    Ned here. A few big pieces of news, in case you've been having a busy week: Netmon 3.3 has been released . You can download from here . Read more about the new features (such as autoscroll, frame commenting, experts, WWAN support, and more) right here . MPS Reports . They're back. They work...
  • Blog Post: Security Policy Settings and User Account Control

    Hi, Mike here. This post was originally published in the Group Policy Team blog in September 2006—anticipating the launch of Windows Vista. Here it is again—refreshed—for the upcoming launch of Windows Server 2008. User Account Control in Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista requires...
  • Blog Post: “Configure slow-link mode” policy on Vista for Offline Files

    Hi, Gary from DS here and I am going to discuss the “Configure slow-link mode” policy on Vista with Offline Files. How is slow link determined by Windows Vista? Offline Files measures the speed of a link based on the packet latency between the client and the target server. This is reported...
  • Blog Post: Saving money and power with Group Policy

    Ned here again. A few months ago Mark Aggar, Pat Stemen, and Michael Walsh wrote an excellent TechNet Magazine article on using group policy to save power. This article gives specific examples as well as fully documents all 35 power management settings covered in Vista. I wanted to make sure our ASKDS...
  • Blog Post: Understanding what the USMT 4.0 CONFIG manifests migrate (Part 16: Vista Section G)

    This part covers the following config.xml components for Windows Vista: -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- < component displayname = " Networking Connections " migrate = " yes " ID = " network_and_internet\networking_connections...
  • Blog Post: Remote Server Administration Tools Released for Windows Vista SP1 (Hurray!)

    Ned here - this is a quick post that can't wait for the Microsoft.com machine to spin up. :-) The long-awaited Remote Server Administration Tools (RSAT) have been released for Windows Vista. These will allow administrators to use their Vista machines to manage their Windows 2000, Windows Server 2003...
  • Blog Post: Under One Month Before Vista SP1 Support Ends

    Hi Folks, Ned here again. Remember how a month ago , I said Vista SP1 support was ending on July 12, 2011 ? Well, it’s still ending on July 12, 2011 . Make sure you have SP2 fully deployed or just finishing up, as we are down to the wire. Download Vista SP2 (x86 version) Download Vista...
  • Blog Post: Vista’s MoveUser.exe replacement

    Hi Rob here again. I recently had a customer that needed the functionality of MoveUser.exe from the Windows 2000 Resource Kit available in Windows Vista. The customer had quite a few Windows Vista machines that were not joined to the domain but were now migrating to Active Directory. For their own business...
  • Blog Post: Last Week Before Vista and Win2008 SP1 Support Ends

    Last chance folks. Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 Service Pack 1 support ends on July 12 . As in, one week from now. This means computers running SP1 won’t get security updates after the next Patch Tuesday. The bomb represents malware. Or your next review… For those not...