Mick's IT Blog

Administrator Reporting Tool

Mick's IT Blog

This PowerShell tool queries AD for a list of machines in the specified administrative admin groups. The list is specified by modifying the script with the groups to be queried. The following example shows how to add groups to the query.

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Automating the Deletion of Windows.old

Mick's IT Blog

It is the beginning of 2021 and my first project for the new year is upgrading all systems to Windows 10 20H2. At the end of the upgrades comes the cleanup and there is no clean way to do this for system admins. Cleanmgr.exe is now deprecated as of Windows 10 2004.

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Installing Printers via ConfigMgr for Non-Admin Users

Mick's IT Blog

KB5005652 resolved the "PrintNightMare" vulnerability, but it also brought many companies to a halt when it came to end-users installing printers if they did not have administrator privileges. During the time since the update, we had our help desk install printers for users on an as-needed basis.

Remotely Pushing Windows Updates via Command Line to Windows 10 Machines

Mick's IT Blog

Normally, windows updates are pushed to machines using Configuration Manager in an enterprise environment. There are occasions though when they must manually be pushed, such as when a system continues to fail via ConfigMgr and troubleshooting is required.

The Practical Guide to Using a Semantic Layer for Data & Analytics

Read about real-life examples and see quantifiable results by leveraging a semantic layer to unlock data for AI & BI at scale.

PowerShell: Install Fonts

Mick's IT Blog

Font installation using PowerShell has changed since Windows 10 1909. The old way of doing it with PowerShell no longer works. This new script was originally written by Ben Reader who is a fellow Microsoft MVP from Australia.

Configuration Manager Message ID 11170 Error

Mick's IT Blog

I was in the process of pushing out the Microsoft Windows 10 20H2 upgrade when I had 23 systems that errored out. They reported the error shown below.

AD Group Member Reporting

Mick's IT Blog

This tool queries specified AD groups for new users that have been added to the group within a specified number of days. The script is written so that it can be used with Azure Automation, Orchestrator, or even a scheduled task, with the addition of the send-mailmessage cmdlet.

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Deleting the Windows 10 Recovery Partition

Mick's IT Blog

We use VMWare for our servers and sometimes virtualized desktops. One of the issues we ran into was expanding the disk space on a virtual machine. When disk space was added, the C: drive could not be expanded because of the reserve drive "being in the way".

Upgrading to both Windows 10 1903 and 1909 with Configuration Manager

Mick's IT Blog

The time has come to do another creator update to the corporate systems. We skipped the 1903 upgrade because of the Windows 7 to Windows 10 deployment that completed just after the release of 1903. It was too soon to start another creator update project, so we waited until 1909.

Using PowerShell to list Zerto Unprotected Systems

Mick's IT Blog

This script will connect to the Zerto server and retrieve a list of systems that Zerto is not backing up. The script has been written so that it can function in the Azure Automation or Orchestrator environment. It can also be used as a scheduled task or executed manually.

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Building Product to Enhance Customer Support: The Key to Customer Retention in an E-commerce Business

Speaker: Bhavana Angadi, Senior Product Manager at Hopscotch (Demand & Growth) | Former Product Manager at Bigbasket

Join Bhavana Angadi, Senior Product Manager at Hopscotch, as she details the best way to increase customer retention.

Configuration Manager Default Client Settings

Mick's IT Blog

I just started building a completely new configuration manager server. While setting it up, I remembered that I wished in the past that I had all of the original default client settings because some did get changed.

Multiple Machine Logon Reporting

Mick's IT Blog

This tool is designed to report if a user profile has been logged into a defined number of machines or greater over a specified period of time.

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Configuration Manager 1910 Upgrade Tips and Issues I Encountered

Mick's IT Blog

We have a new datacenter and the configuration manager server needed to be moved to that location. The setup of Configuration Manager is not too difficult. I did though run into several gotchas along the way. The first one was a warning that read 'configuration for SQL server memory usage'.

SCCM Client Installer for MDT

Mick's IT Blog

Recently, I wanted to revisit the process of installing the SCCM client during an MDT task sequence. At first, I tried to use the SCCM PowerShell module to initiate the install. I learned during testing that it does not work if a system is not present in SCCM.

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Populate VMWare Virtual Systems to a ConfigMgr Collection

Mick's IT Blog

During the COVID19 pandemic, one of my projects has been to build a new configuration manager server at our newer production site for optimal performance.

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Migrating Oracle to PostgreSQL

Considering migrating away from Oracle? Learn why PostgreSQL is the right move.

Preventing Windows 10 Apps from Reappearing after an In-Place or Feature Upgrade

Mick's IT Blog

In the imaging process I devised, most of the Windows 10 Built-In apps, such as mail and maps, are removed. My company uses the SAC edition of Windows 10 enterprise. This requires us to perform an in-place upgrade every 6 months.

ConfigMgr Pending Reboot Report

Mick's IT Blog

We wanted a list of servers that are waiting for a reboot. Thankfully, ConfigMgr has a pending restart field that allows admins to see when systems are waiting for a reboot. Our server team wanted that list to be automatically generated and emailed to them daily.

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Legacy Distribution Point Cleanup

Mick's IT Blog

This script will clean up the legacy items left over after a distribution point has been deleted in the configuration manager console. This is sometimes necessary if the same server is going to be used to re-push the distribution point back down to it.

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Bitlocker Non-Compliance Reporting

Mick's IT Blog

As part of the suite of security tools I am writing, this will query the configuration manager SQL database for a list of machines that are not Bitlocker encrypted.

Report 107

The Ultimate Guide to Creating a Strong and Effective Value Proposition

Speaker: Robin Zaragoza, Product Coach and CEO of The Product Refinery

Join Robin Zaragoza, product coach and CEO of The Product Refinery, as she shares tips on how to create a powerful Value Proposition that keeps your customer at the heart of your product development process.

Microsoft Endpoint Manager Configuration Manager PowerShell Upgrade Script

Mick's IT Blog

With the advent of Microsoft Endpoint Manager Configuration Manager 1910, I started researching the upgrade requirements. I happened to run into a great blog post by fellow MVP Martin Bengtsson on what should be done before the upgrade takes place.

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Check Boot Environment for BIOS or UEFI

Mick's IT Blog

One of my recent projects is to convert our remaining legacy systems from BIOS to UEFI. While setting up the task sequence, I needed to be able to test the system to make sure it was not already UEFI so the task sequence would end if it was. The PowerShell script reads the setupact.log file and extracts if it is configured as BIOS or UEFI. I have included an unknown message in the event the log file does not exist or is inaccessible, which is what I encountered on one machine.

System 106

PowerShell One-Liner to Configure the NIC Power Management Settings

Mick's IT Blog

While working on a series of one-liners for configuring the NIC on machines, I created this needed to makes changes to the power management settings of the NIC. This is something that will be implemented in the build, so I also wanted to make the script into a one-liner so the code itself can reside within the task sequence. This one-liner can check/uncheck the boxes within the Power Management tab of the network adapter. There are two ways this can be done.

SCCM Pending Reboot Report

Mick's IT Blog

We wanted a list of servers that are waiting for a reboot. Thankfully, SCCM has a pending restart field that allows admins to see when systems are waiting for a reboot. Our server team wanted that list to be automatically generated and emailed to them daily. Other than myself, others that have the SCCM console rarely look at it since they wear many hats in IT. I could not find any PowerShell cmdlets in the SCCM module for viewing a pending restart.

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Data & Analytics Maturity Model Workshop Series

Speaker: Dave Mariani, Co-founder & Chief Technology Officer, AtScale; Bob Kelly, Director of Education and Enablement, AtScale

Check out this new instructor-led training workshop series to help advance your organization's data & analytics maturity. It includes on-demand video modules and a free assessment tool for prescriptive guidance on how to further improve your capabilities.

Install Configuration Manager PowerShell Module

Mick's IT Blog

I wanted to install the Configuration Manager PowerShell module on my admin machine. After investigating a little, the module does not exist in the Microsoft PowerShell gallery.

Application List Report

Mick's IT Blog

We have started the Windows 10 upgrades and part of this process is installing applications for users that are not included in the standard build. One option is to use the SCCM Resource Explorer for a list of apps installed. The problem with that is it is a blanket report. It shows everything and all we were wanting is a report of the additional apps installed after a build.

WMI Query for Dell Manufacture and First Power On Date

Mick's IT Blog

A recent project of mine was to obtain the Dell manufacture and ownership dates from all systems for depreciation and lifecycle purposes. This information is not readily available in SCCM and on the local machines.

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Using PowerShell for SQL Backup Verification

Mick's IT Blog

Earlier this year, we had a non-critical SQL server to crash. Come to find out, the backups were successful every night, but the data in the backup was corrupt. Needless to say, the server had to be recreated from scratch. Thankfully it was a non-critical server.

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Open Source is Quickly—and Rightfully— Becoming Enterprise’s First Choice

Open source is not just a community, it’s a movement. And while its popularity has, of course, existed for decades, its accelerating growth in today’s enterprise is unmistakable. Find out why enterprises are going all-in on their open source strategy.

Configuration Manager Default Antimalware Policy

Mick's IT Blog

While building my new Configuration Manager server, MECM, I took screenshots of the default antimalware policy settings in the event settings in it ever got changed. The default should not be changed. A new policy should be created and deployed.

Zero Touch Dell Command Update for SCCM and MDT

Mick's IT Blog

I have used the Dell Command | Update in the build for quite some time for managing the drivers on systems because it makes it a hand-off approach with little setup and reliable updates direct from Dell. The one thing I have wanted to be able to rerun this task several times without having to have duplicate tasks in the task sequence. Sometimes there are multiple reboots required because not all drivers can be installed at the same time.

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PowerShell One-Liners to ensure Dell system is configured for UEFI when imaging

Mick's IT Blog

While planning and configuring the Windows 10 upgrades, we had to also include the transition to UEFI from BIOS. I wanted to make sure that when the build team builds new models that they are configured for UEFI when applicable, otherwise the build fails within seconds after it starts. We use Dell systems, so interacting with the BIOS is simple. The Dell Command | Configure allows for the BIOS to be queried, which is what we need here to verify specific models are set correctly.

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Active Directory PowerShell Module Configuration Baseline

Mick's IT Blog

With the recent 1809, RSAT is now integrated into Windows, which is a major plus for the admin side. In my environment, I have the active directory PowerShell module enabled on all machines for two reasons. The first is I use it to move the machine in AD during the build process. The second is that I have an SCCM baseline that makes sure the Bitlocker key matches the one stored in AD. For these, I need the module installed and thankfully it is now just a simple Add-WindowsCapability cmdlet.

Product-Led Onboarding: How to Turn New Users into Lifelong Customers

Speaker: Ramli John, Managing Director at ProductLed and Author

Let’s face it. Today’s users are impulsive and easily distracted. They don’t have the time (or patience) to try and figure things out by themselves. They expect the product to be intuitive. Easy. And fast. Add to that a few, unfairly poor reviews and you’ll be more than just stuck. Ramli will share a simple but powerful framework to get more users to experience a product’s "Eureka!" moment and turn them into lifelong customers.

PowerShell One-Liner to Enable Features in Microsoft Windows 1809

Mick's IT Blog

In Windows 10 1809, I needed to enable some RSAT features that are now included in the OS. I figured this would be a good time to go from using a script to using one-liners for the build process. Mike Robbins's blog was a good start to developing this one-liner. This allows for you to manage the code within the task sequence, thereby negating the issue of storing a script and the possibility of the script accidentally being deleted.

Local Administrator Baseline Compliance

Mick's IT Blog

One of the issues we have had is some users ending up being in the administrators group. There are circumstances to which we have to sometimes put a user in that group to install an application which is both user and computer-based. It can be easy to forget to take the user back out of that group. We don't allow the end users here to have local administrator privileges for security reasons.

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Configuring Wake-On-LAN for Dell Systems

Mick's IT Blog

If you have been wanting to wake your Dell systems up from sleep, hibernate, or shutdown states, this is how you do it. Starting out with this article from Dell, I got the list of things needed to set up the system for WOL. There are three areas that have to be configured on Dell systems, at least for the systems we have which range from the Optiplex 990 to the Latitude 7490. The areas are BIOS, advanced NIC, and power management settings.

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SCCM Duplicate Machine Cleanup

Mick's IT Blog

I got tired of duplicate systems appearing in SCCM caused by computers being reimaged while using the same computer name. To rid myself of this issue, I wrote the script below. It queries the SCCM SQL database for a list of machines where the SCCM client installation was attempted with a return code of 120. This error code indicates the system is already present and active in SCCM, thereby indicating this system is the old one.

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How to Scale a Data Literacy Program at Your Organization

Speaker: Megan Brown, Director, Data Literacy at Starbucks; Mariska Veenhof-Bulten, Business Intelligence Lead at bol.com; and Jennifer Wheeler, Director, IT Data and Analytics at Cardinal Health

Join data & analytics leaders from Starbucks, Cardinal Health, and bol.com for a webinar panel discussion on scaling data literacy skills across your organization with a clear strategy, a pragmatic roadmap, and executive buy-in.