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Fix for Windows 7 deployments failing after upgrading to Windows ADK 10

Jul 29 2015
If you upgraded your ConfigMgr 2012 R2 SP1 server to Windows 10 ADK you probably learned that some of the existing Windows 7 deployment no longer works. More specifically, it’s the computer refresh and computer replace scenarios that fails because an issue with loadstate on Windows 7 machines. The simple root cause is that loadstate requires additional files when run on Windows 7, files that are not in the USMT package.

Building a Windows 10 Reference Image using MDT 2013 Update 1

Jul 28 2015
With only a day to the release of Windows 10 it about time for a quick guide on building the perfect Windows 10 reference image. MDT 2013 Update 1 is not yet released so in this guide I’m using the MDT 2013 Update 1 Preview, together with some updated scripts from the MDT product team.

Beyond Basic Windows 10 Provisioning Packages

Jul 21 2015
Windows 10 and it’s new provisioning packages presents an exciting addition to the traditional way of applying settings, even apps, to a system during operating system deployment. However, in my not so humble opinion, this is a very 1.0 release. My biggest concern is not the feature itself, but two other things: 1. The lack of integration with normal enterprise deployment of Windows, e.g. with solutions like MDT and/or ConfigMgr. 2. It’s old school way of tying some of it’s features to setup.exe, and windows setup audit mode. Both components that are not used, and should not be used, during OSD. That being said, the feature does provide interesting new ways of doing things for deployment:

Extreme Deployment - Techniques for deploying large files over LAN

Jul 11 2015
It’s been an interesting week, with some great discussions and research on how to transfer larges files to a lot of computers as efficient as possible. Time to write down some of that research. The scenario is: You have a bunch of machine, say student computers, you have limited infrastructure, and you want to deploy large files (apps, virtual machines, lab files etc.). What are your options for doing that?  Well so far, and here is were I would love to get your feedback/input, I have found the following, divided into the following two categories

Beyond ZIP Part II - Data DeDuplication Archives for all Windows versions via ZPAQ

Jul 10 2015
In April 2014 I wrote a blog post on how to use PowerShell and Data DeDuplication in Windows Server 2012 R2 to create small VHDX archives, very useful for transfer large content of virtual machines. In the example from 2014 I stored 183 GB of VMs in a 25 GB VHDX archive (which I also further compressed with 7-zip into a 16 GB file).

Enabling Virtual Secure Mode (VSM) in Windows 10 Enterprise Build 10130

Jun 20 2015
This turned out to be a somewhat interesting Saturday afternoon. I finally got some time to play around with the Virtual Secure Mode feature that is available in Windows 10 Enterprise (only). Since that feature requires the Hyper-V hypervisor to be installed, and I’m still running Windows Server 2012 R2 on my main Hyper-V hosts, testing this in a virtual machine was not an option. Instead I used a Dell XPS 13 (4393) Core i7 box, which is a quite nice machine.

Creating Automatic Deployment Rules (ADR) using PowerShell

Jun 02 2015
Spent some time this afternoon writing a PowerShell script that created a Automatic Deployment Rule for ConfigMgr 2012 (SCCM). The script is using the native SCCM cmdlets  and also creates a Software Update Deployment Package that the ADR is using.

Using the LocationServer.xml feature in MDT 2013

May 28 2015
MDT 2013 Lite Touch has a built-in functions to prompt for deployment share via the LocationServer.xml file. Most times I use the default gateway property to have clients automatically select the right server depending on what subnet they are on, but sometimes prompting can be useful too.

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