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  • Blog Post: Dealing With Duplicate User Profile Links in Windows Vista

    Overview of Windows Vista User Profiles In previous versions of Windows the user's profile was largely hidden away and only the more technically-minded of us would ever knowingly delve into its contents.  With Windows Vista there seems to have been a significant change in that the profile has been...
  • Blog Post: MDT Debugger 2.1

    As some of our regular readers will have seen, I released version 2.0 of the MDT Debugger a short time ago. This version 2.1 is just a minor update with the following changes/improvements: Fixed a bug in the output window that caused some process output not to be captured and displayed Added...
  • Blog Post: Allowing Better Interaction to App-V Virtual Applications

    Each time I work on a Windows deployment project, App-V figures more and more in the conversations that I have with customers. It is, in my opinion, now a vital tool that is needed in order to successfully migrate an existing platform (or deploy a new one) to Windows 7. The uses for App-V vary but two...
  • Blog Post: Keeping An Eye On USMT Progress

    I recently did a project where all users had around 25Gb (don’t ask!) of data that had to be migrated with the USMT during the OS deployment. Because of the sheer volume of data, the USMT phases of the project took an extremely long time to complete, and because no on-screen feedback is given of the...
  • Blog Post: Useful Script Number 5 - Adjusting the Default User Registry Hive

    Michael Murgolo did a great post on the different ways to adjust default settings when building an image ( Configuring default settings for Windows image deployment ) and one of the options presented was to targeted changes to the Default User Registry hive and profile folders. I had to do this recently...
  • Blog Post: ConfigMgr Admin Console GUID documentor

    ConfigMgr allows for great extensibility to perform right click actions. You can find information on this here http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc143056.aspx . Those of you that have done this before know that the first step is digging through the adminconsole.xml file to find the correct GUID...
  • Blog Post: USMT Error Codes

    I was recently configuring the User State Migration Tool for a customer’s MDT server when, during the testing phase, the USMT began failing with an error code (‘return code’ or ‘rc’ when you read the MDT log files).  I searched the USMT documentation on TechNet looking for the explanation of what...
  • Blog Post: ZTI MDT Debugger 1.0

    I've had this tool sitting in a folder on my laptop half-finished for a few months but after a particularly frustrating problem with a script in a ZTI deployment I was encouraged to finish it! The original MDTDebugger that I wrote is a great help for debugging tasks running in a litetouch (LTI) deployment...
  • Blog Post: Simple Deployment Monitoring

    When working on a client site, the laboratory where I have the MDT server(s) set up along with the test machines is not always in the same place as where I am. This could be for a variety of reasons, but usually it is that the lab area is either too cold to stay in (aggressive AC being used!) or just...
  • Blog Post: Sharing some simple HTAs

    I was recently asked to share these files with a colleague, so I thought I would also share them with everyone via our blog. I developed them a while ago for a deployment project and I have since used them a few times more. Basically, they are 3 very simple HTA (HTML application) files that prompt...
  • Blog Post: Location Deployment Wizard for ConfigMgr 2007

    When working on deployment projects, there is often a requirement for a workstation to be customised on a location by location basis. Common workstation customisations which are applied in this manner include: Localisation settings (locales, keyboard settings, time zones, Windows (Windows Vista...
  • Blog Post: Windows 7 Deployment Options for Small and Midsize Businesses

    Happy new year to everyone! It looks like I am making the first blog post here for 2012 :-) To get the year rolling I thought I'd share anexcellent resource that I stumbled across this week, even though it was published back in November. If you follow the link below you can download a printable overview...
  • Blog Post: MDT Debugger 2.0

    Back in March of last year, I posted the MDT Debugger as a time/stress and frustration saving tool useful for debugging the scripts you develop for use with MDT. Over the last year, I've used the tool in every MDT project that I have worked on, which has given me the opportunity to (very slowly) address...
  • Blog Post: GImageX Beta for Windows 7 Beta

    The Windows Automated Installation Kit (Windows AIK) is a set of tools and documentation that support the configuration and deployment of Microsoft® Windows® operating systems.. By using Windows AIK, you can automate Windows installations, capture Windows images with ImageX, configure and modify images...
  • Blog Post: Keeping An Eye On USMT Progress v0.2

    Back in June I posted a script that I’d written that displays the progress of the USMT capture and recover phases in a neat HTML window off to one side of the screen; particularly useful if you are capturing/recovering large amounts of data because otherwise it looked like the USMT progress had hung...
  • Blog Post: Microsoft Office Migration Planning Manager- New Version for Office 2010

    If you attended any of my Office 2010 OnRamp sessions you'd have heard me mention that there was (at the time) no version of the Office Migration Planning Manager (OMPM) for Microsoft Office 2010. Well that has changed recently with the release for download of this tool, updated for Office 2010; you...
  • Blog Post: Managing Windows Updates

    When creating a new operating system WIM image with MDT, one of the things that you should always examine is the new updates for Windows that you will include; my recommendation has always been to make sure that the image is as up-to-date as possible with all the released Windows updates for the operating...
  • Blog Post: Getting more into DVD Media Based Deployment

    One of the great features of MDT 2010/2012 is the ability to create a media based deployment  – this media based deployment can be placed on a USB based memory device (HDD or Fob) or onto a DVD. This allows the MDT based deployment to run from this removable media which is great for badly connected...
  • Blog Post: Non-shrinking WIM files

    If you make regular changes to your WIM files with the use of the /MOUNTRW or /DELETE switches of IMAGEX, then you may have noticed that your WIM files do not shrink in size after you commit the changes back to the file.  You could delete 500mb of data from an image file, only to see the file stay...
  • Blog Post: Logging All the Configuration Manager Task Sequence Variables

    When debugging a MDT based Configuration Manager Task Sequence, it is often helpful to know what certain built-in Configuration Manager variables are set to during a step in the task sequence. For instance, you may want to see if _SMSTSLastActionRetCode was equal to a certain value or perhaps which management...
  • Blog Post: Deployment Mindmaps

    "Why deployment is so hard?", “Where can I find all related information?” What else I need to consider?” Those or similar questions are normal during my customer projects. After getting the same questions again and again, I’ve decided to create a Mindmap with all common links...