CCMEXEC.COM – System Center blog

CCMEXEC.COM – by Jörgen Nilsson

The summer is here and so is Microsoft Sommarkollo 2013! :D Sommarkollo is a free event which offers a lot of half day sessions around many new Microsoft technologies in Helsingborg, Stockholm and Göteborg.

I will be presenting in Helsingborg and Göteborg: (in Swedish)

Nästa generations klienthantering med System Center 2012 SP1 / R2 och Windows Intune

Med nya enheter som behöver hanteras och Bring Your Own Device trenden som sveper fram, släpper Microsoft nu System Center 2012 Configuration Manager R2 samt en ny version av Windows Intune. Under denna session går vi igenom nyheterna i R2/Intune samt vad man kan göra med Configuration Manager 2012 SP1 och Windows Intune redan idag när det gäller hantering av andra enheter än Windows samt hur man kan hantera BYOD.

Anmäl dig till sessionen i Helsingborg den 25/6 här >

Anmäl dig till sessionen i Göteborg den 27/6 här >

I hope to see many of you there!

I wrote a script long ago which actually started in a Technet froum thread that removes the computer from the OSD collection after a successful OS deployment using a status filter rule. I have used it many times since.

Now I thought that the time had come to re-write it in Powershell instead, but I found that this had already been done.. It can be found here:

Great work by Chris Greuter!

So instead of re-writing the script I will post the link here instead.

On Monday, at the first day of Teched System Center 2012 Configuration Manager R2 was announced! :D

The same day there was a session called “Microsoft System Center 2012 SP1 – Configuration Manager Overview” where they actually talked about some of the new features in ConfigMgr 2012 R2. The great news is that this recording and slides are already available online on Channel 9:

Some great new features in Configuration Manager 2012 R2 was announced in the session:

  • Support for Windows 8.1
  • Manage Windows 8.1 using Mobile Device Agent (BYOD)
  • Workplace join
  • Selective Wipe for IOS devices
  • Better management of Android devices
  • New Self-service Portals, native apps of IOS, Android and Windows x86
  • Support for configuring Work folders
  • Work folders integration with the Self-service portal
  • Role-based administration control (RBAC) now supports reports

Be sure to check out the recording!!

I am so happy I have to post it here!

One of the biggest challenges with evaluating Windows Intune/SCCM 2012 for device management was that you need to buy a certificate from Symantec just to evaluate management of Windows Phone 8 devices, not deploying applications, to manage them. As compared to the Windows RT devices that you can manage without a certificate but you cannot deploy applications to them.
It has also been very hard for partners to be able to demo management of Windows Phone 8 because of the certificates requirement.

But now there is a solution,Windows Intune/SCCM Windows Phone 8 trial kit is available for download. This kit makes it possible to manage Windows Phone 8 devices during the evaluation period and to deploy demo apps to Windows Phone 8 as well.

Thanks Microsoft for solving this for us!!

This is actually an update that has been around for a while it was actually released in March, but as it is a great update which contains many interesting hotfixes for Windows 7 sp1 and Windows 2008 R2 Sp1. Many still haven’t deployed it so I thought I would write this post. The more I have used it in customer cases, has made me include it in all my master images and deploy it everywhere . The updates that are included a big difference which actually is visible for the end-users as well when it comes to startup times and logon times on their computers.
We should not expect another service pack at least not according to all the rumors, this hotfix rollup could just as well be considered a service pack.

Some of the most important updates that are included are:

  • Group Policy preference item-level targeting does not work for 64-bit versions of Windows 7
  • An update that improves the startup performance of Windows 7 and of Windows Server 2008 R2 is available
  • You may encounter file corruption issues when you use the Offline Files feature to synchronize data in Windows 7
  • Offline files synchronization may not finish on a computer that is running Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2
  • Internet Explorer Group Policy Preferences do not apply to Internet Explorer 9 in a Windows Server 2008 R2 domain environment
  • You experience a long domain logon time in Windows Vista; Windows 7; Windows Server 2008 or Windows Server 2008 R2 after you deploy Group Policy preferences to the computer
  • Unexpectedly slow startup or logon process in Windows Server 2008 R2 or in Windows 7
  • Logon scripts take a long time to run in Windows Vista; in Windows Server 2008; in Windows 7 or in Windows Server 2008 R2
  • Long startup or logon time on a Windows 7-based or Windows Server 2008 R2-based client computer when you apply a Group Policy preference that has OU filtering
  • Long startup or logon time when no domain controllers are available on a Windows 7-based or Windows Server 2008 R2-based domain member computer

If you haven’t deployed it already I strongly recommend it!

The Knowledge Base 2775511 describing the update can be found here:

The update can be downloaded from the update catalog
Type the KB number in the upper right corner:

This is a topic that is discussed in many forums and almost with every customer I meet, how can we do PXE boot on out UEFI devices. This is new technology to many of us and driven by the new Windows 8 tablet’s like the HP Elitepad 900 and the Dell Latitude 10.
Configuration Manager 2012 SP1 supports UEFI and PXE boot of these devices, however there are some dependencies to which version of Windows Deployment Services (WDS) that is used on the PXE-enabled Distribution Point as well.
To support PXE boot of 32-bit UEFI devices Configuration Manager 2012 Cumulative Update 1 needs to be installed as well, KB2817245

A Windows Server 2008 R2 WDS supports PXE boot of 64-bit EFI devices:

From Technet: “Provides support for network booting x64-based computers with EFI, including support for the Auto-Add policy and the ability to deploy boot images using multicasting.” Reference:

A Windows Server 2012 WDS supports the PXE Boot of both 32 and 64 bit EFI Devices:

From Technet: “Support x86 clients (32-bit processors) with Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) to network boot and complete an end-to-end deployment by using WDS.” Reference:

This means that yes you can use Configuration Manager 2012 to deploy Windows 8 to your Windows 8 tablet using Windows 8, as long as you are using Server 2012 as the operating System for the PXE-enabled DP and if the Firmware from the vendor supports it as well.

If we look at the file structure in the RemoteInstall directory on a Windows 2008 R2 server running Configuration Manager 2012 sp1 DP it looks like this, where the .efi file doesn’t exist in the x86 folder:



On a Server 2012 DP we can see that the x86 folder includes the files needed to boot .UEFI based devices.

Conclusion, yes, you can PXE boot your UEFI devices depending on which version of  Windows Server the DP is running and which architecture the UEFI device you are trying to boot uses and as long as you are using Configuration Manager 2012 SP1

In Configuration Manager 2012 you can have multiple SMS Providers to achieve a higher availability and load balancing. This is a really great new feature!
I ran into this little challenge yesterday, when we moved the SQL database to a SQL Cluster and installed a second SMS Provider in the site to achieve high availability. We installed the ADK as it is a documented pre-req on Technet for the SMS Provider role.

When the Admin console connected using the newly installed SMS Provider we got this error as soon as you try to edit a Task Sequence which uses the MDT integration:

Multiple_SMS_ProvWe resolved this by installing the same version of MDT as we use on the Primary Site server on the server  with the newly added SMS Provider role installed on it and ran the “Configure MDT Integration” utility on that server as well.

After that all the errors are gone and the newly installed SMS Provides works just fine even when editing Task Sequences with the MDT integration installed.

On Monday 8 of April 2013 the keynote of MMS 2013 was held in the Mandalay Bay Event Center. It’s main focus was the cloud as the name “Cloud Optimize Your Business with Microsoft Management Solutions”. The keynote was divided into to parts basically, first part about private/public cloud and a lot of comparison with “The other guys in the industry” who that could be ;-)  It included customer references and live demos of many interesting components.

From a Client Management perspective Configuration Manager was only visible when using the Windows Intune connector to manage devices, Brad’s Windows 8 phone for instance. There are a really interesting case study on how Toyota manage car-diagnostics pc’s using Windows Intune, really interesting you can read it here:

Overall it was good keynote!

The Keynote is available here for downloading and streaming:

Here is a script which can be used to download all the session recordings from the channel9 website: