Intune: The evolution

Spent some time today documenting the evolution of Intune. It really shows how Microsoft has developed a cloud based device management solution over time. Starting with nothing more than a glorified patch management tool (in my eyes). If we can learn something from the past, the next few years will be really exciting for Intune, from my point of view it already covers 90% of what most small to medium size companies use in SCCM today.

IntuneEvo

 

SCCM 2012: Intune Connector and Windows RT, Lessons learned!

To get it working you can follow the official documentation: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/2c6bd0e5-d436-41c8-bf38-30152d76be10#BKMK_RTcert

For more information on how to enroll and sideload keys for APP Deployment, Simons May has created a great video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=KFpaUSWAv9U#!

Before I got things working I learned a couple of lessons:

  1. Do not install DirSync on the SCCM server. (It broke my management point)
  2. Make sure the username of your Intune enabled users is synchronized by DirSync and is the same as discovered in SCCM. If it’s not you will not be allowed to enroll your device.
  3. For Windows Phone you need a Symantec Code Signing certificate. But for Windows RT it’s not an absolute requirement. If you have an internal PKI solution you can create your own.

Windows Server: Getting started with SMI-S on Windows Server 2012

“SMI-S support is available, coupled with the new Storage Management API (SMAPI), which consists of new WMI interfaces and cmdlets, it is possible to manage SAN or direct attached storage in a vendor-independent fashion, and also in a system-independent fashion if you have more than Windows in your datacenter. The new File and Storage Services canvas in Server Manager can take advantage of SMI-S providers, giving you a GUI for managing basic array functionality right out of the box.”

http://blogs.technet.com/b/filecab/archive/2012/07/06/3507632.aspx

 

SCSM 2012: The data warehouse registration failed.

If you have difficulties registering your service manager datawarehouse server with the management server. I may be because the server where you run the console is unable to execute the PowerShell command necessary to do the registration.

SCSMDWP01

Solution: On the server where you run the service manager console. (Usually the management server), start powershell and run command: Set-ExecutionPolicy RemoteSigned

SCSMDWP02

Try to register the data warehouse again. Hopefully you will succeed.

SCSMDWP03

SCOM 2012: How to fix broken SP1 upgrade.

First of all, before upgrading your System Center Operations Manager environment please read the documentation. It’s really critical to do things in the right order. Start here: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj899854.aspx

I recently came across a broken System Center 2012 Operations Manager installation. What had happened was that the SP1 upgrade had been started on two management servers at the same time. The service pack installation makes changes to the Operations Manager database, as all of the management server share the same database these changes only need to be made when installing the Service Pack on the first server. The installation tries to determine if it need to run the SQL update or not. In this case the SQL update had not completed.

The management server was healthy, but I found the network discovery rules not able to run. In the Operations Manager EventLog I found, EventID: 33333Warning001

Data Access Layer rejected retry on SqlError:
Class: 16
Number: 8144
Message: Procedure or function p_JobStatusScheduled has too many arguments specified.

 

Nedless to say, this is really bad. Next I looked at the procedures stored in the OperationsManager database, I found parameters missing from the SP1 procedures found within the installation SQL scripts.

Broken(OLD) p_jobStatusScheduled:

Procedure001

SP1(Correct) p_jobStatusScheduled:

Procedure002

So to complete the OperationsManager database upgrade I did the following.

  • Stopped the System Center Operations Manager Services.

SCOMServices001

  • Executed SQL Command:
USE OperationsManager 
IF EXISTS (SELECT * FROM sysindexes where [name] = 'idx_StateDatabaseTimeModified' AND id = object_id(N'[dbo].[State]')) 
DROP INDEX [idx_StateDatabaseTimeModified] ON [dbo].[State]
  • Ran the build_mom_db.sql script against the OperationsManager database, this is located in the Setup\AMD64 folder within the System Center 2012 SP1 installation media.

 

SCOM 2012: Identify rule or monitor from workflow name with powershell.

Sometimes identifying a rule or a monitor related to a alert can be challenging. PowerShell can be a great tool. I’m sharing the syntax for future reference.

Example:

  • For a rule

Get-SCOMRule | where {$_.Name -eq “Microsoft.SystemCenter.DiscoveryWriteActionModule.AgentProxyingNotEnabled.Alert”}

  • For a monitor

Get-SCOMmonitor | where {$_.Name -eq “Microsoft.SystemCenter.DiscoveryWriteActionModule.AgentProxyingNotEnabled.Alert”}

  • For a NotificationSubscription

Get-NotificationSubscription | ? {$_.name -eq “Subscription911173b6_cd1f_3aff_9a6c_d536e2a3f152”}

 

SCCM: How to exclude collections in CM07 queries.

In System Center 2012 Configuration Manager you can create “Exclude Collection” rules. This can be useful if you have a query based collection but want to exclude members of another collection.

Example: You have a collection (A) containing all computers with an application installed, then you need to create a new collection (B) containing all computers where the application is missing. To achieve this you can create a dynamic rule listing all computers in your environment and a second “Exclude Collection” rule excluding all members of the collection (A). As a result collection (B) will only contain clients where the application is missing.

If you for some reason still are using System Center Configuration Manager 2007 (and for some reason cannot migrate to CM2012), you can achieve the same by modifying your query.

Add the following to your Query (marked in red), J0100249 is the “Collection id”: Select SMS_R_System.Name from  SMS_R_System where SMS_R_System.ResourceId not in (select ResourceID from SMS_CM_RES_COLL_J0100249)

Exclude1 Exclude2

Windows 8: Windows 8.1 update will be unveiled June 26

Microsoft will release a public preview of Windows 8.1 available starting on June 26, timed With the build developer Conference in San Fransisco. The preview will be available for Windows 8 and Windows RT.

Read more on the Microsoft Blogs:

http://blogs.technet.com/b/microsoft_blog/archive/2013/05/14/free-windows-8-1-update-will-be-unveiled-june-26.aspx

http://blogs.windows.com/windows/b/bloggingwindows/archive/2013/05/14/windows-keeps-getting-better.aspx

 

SCOM: AD MP Configure or disable replication monitoring.

Jimmy Harper wrote a blog post in 2009 about how to configure or disable Replication Monitoring in the AD management pack.

“if you need to set overrides to configure or disable Replication Monitoring, they must be set on all of the following Rules:

AD Replication is occurring slowly (there are three rules with this name)     One or more domain controllers may not be replicating (there are three rules with this name)     DC has failed to synchronize naming context with its replication partner (there are three rules with this name)     All of the replication partners failed to replicate.      AD Replication Performance Collection – Metric Replication Latency      AD Replication Performance Collection – Metric Replication Latency:Minimum      AD Replication Performance Collection – Metric Replication Latency:Maximum      AD Replication Performance Collection – Metric Replication Latency:Average

Read the blogpost here: http://blogs.technet.com/b/jimmyharper/archive/2009/05/20/configuring-or-disabling-replication-monitoring-in-the-active-directory-management-pack.aspx

 

SCOM: Reports are not populated in the System Center 2012 Operations Manager Reporting Pane

To confirm this issue in the Operations Console, go to the Monitoring View and click on discovered inventory. Then change the Target type to Data Warehouse Synchronization server by completing the following:

1. Click Change Target Type on the right-hand task pane of the Operations Console
2. In the dialog that opens select View all targets
3. Locate and select Data Warehouse Synchronization Server in the list
4. Click OK

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2771934?wa=wsignin1.0

 

SCOM: Get started the right way (overrides, groups, roles and subscriptions)

  • Always create an “overrides management pack” when you import a sealed MP from a vendor. Decide on a naming convention and follow it. I like to name it mp.name(overrides) or mp.name overrides to match the default names in SCOM for monitoring and discovery. 

SCOM_BP_1

  • Create Universal AD Groups for security delegation. Universal groups can be mail enabled, meaning that you can use them for subscriptions also. In this way you can easily manage access to roles in SCOM and with the same mechanisms manage notifications. All by populating users in AD Groups.

SCOM_BP_2

Got this tip from “Alex De Jong”, attending one of his classes, credit goes to him (AlexdeJong.com)

  • Create user roles for each management pack or service in your datacenter. Connect these roles to your ad groups created in the previous step. When you create the role, make sure you limit “Dashboards and Views” to what’s only related to the role.

SCOM_BP_3

SCOM_BP_4

SCOM_BP_5

Create subscriptions related to your roles. Then add your mail enabled groups as subscribers.

       SCOM_BP_6

For conditions, select all related classes for your role in the subscription. And select “High”   priority, Default nothing in SCOM is high priority, so by doing this you can choose what is critical to you by creating priority overrides.

 SCOM_BP_7

  • Create a group for each management pack, then disable the management pack for all computers but those who are members of your group. By doing this you can easily manage which computers you want to monitor “in dept”.

SCOM_BP_8

Go to the Authoring Pane > Management Pack Objects > Discoveries. Set your scope to your related management pack. Look for a discovery that targets a default class. Usually the Windows Server class is used. This is the initial discovery, to identify computers running a product, in this example Hyper-V, this discovery will trigger later discoveries so SCOM can learn more about the servers.

         SCOM_BP_9

Override and disable the initial discovery for all objects off the class.

SCOM_BP_10

Then create a new override targeting your group, and select the “Enforced option” to make this override a priority.

SCOM_BP_11

By doing this you will make sure that you only have in dept monitoring of the servers you populate in your groups. Then you can delegate the task of maintaining these groups to each operator.

How to Configure a Clustered Storage Space in Windows Server 2012

Troubleshooting a clustered Storage Space in Server 2012 I came accross this blog post: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/clustering/archive/2012/06/02/10314262.aspx

A great guide on how to create a clustered storage space, and necessary prerequisites:

  • A minimum of three physical drives, with at least 4 gigabytes (GB) capacity each, are required to create a storage pool in a Failover Cluster.
  •  The clustered storage pool MUST be comprised of Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) connected physical disks. Layering any form of storage subsystem, whether an internal RAID card or an external RAID box, regardless of being directly connected or connected via a storage fabric, is not supported.
  •  All physical disks used to create a clustered pool must pass the Failover Cluster validation tests. To run cluster validation tests:
  • Clustered storage spaces must use fixed provisioning.
  • Simple and mirror storage spaces are supported for use in Failover Cluster. Parity Spaces are not supported.
  • The physical disks used for a clustered pool must be dedicated to the pool. Boot disks should not be added to a clustered pool nor should a physical disk be shared among multiple clustered pools.
  • Storage spaces formatted with ReFS cannot be added to the Cluster Shared Volume (CSV).

SCVMM 2012: How to use a SMB 3.0 Fileshare as Highly Available storage

In Windows Server 2012, SMB 3.0 file shares can be used as shared storage for Hyper-V, Using Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) in System Center 2012 Service Pack 1 (SP1) you can assign SMB file shares to Hyper-V stand-alone hosts and host clusters.

  • Navigate to Fabric > Storage

SMB3_1

  • Right click “Storage” and select “Add Storage Devices”

SMB3_2

  • Select: “Add a Windows based file server as managed storage device”SMB3_3
  • Type in the name of your Windows Server 2012 File ServerSMB3_4
  • Verify that your server was detected as a Storage deviceSMB3_6
  • Confirm your choises.

 SMB3_7

  • To create a File Share on the newly added storage device, navigate to Fabric > Storage > File Servers > (Right Click) > Select Create File Share.SMB3_8
  • Specify a name for the file share and a local path on the file server where SCVMM should create the share. (Select “Continuosly available” if your you have a clustered file server. Click add to create the file share.

SMB3_9

  • To add the newly created file share to your cluster. Navigate to: “VMs and Services” > Right click your cluster > Select properties.SMB3_10
  • On the “File Share Storage” pane click on the “add button”SMB3_11
  • In the dropdown list, select your newly created file share. Click “OK”.

 SMB3_12

  • Next you need to specify a “Run As Account”, Click on the “Browse” button.

 SMB3_13

  • Select a run as account. This should not be your SCVMM Service account. If needed create a new account in active directory. SCVMM will use this account to access the share. Permission on the share will be configured by SCVMM.

 SMB3_14

Your file server and share is now available as highly available storage in your cluster.  SMB3_16

You can read more about assigning SMB 3.0 file shares in Microsoft’s official documentation library: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj614620.aspx#BKMK_AssignShare

System Center 2012: The order in witch you upgrade System Center 2012 components is very important.

“In an environment that includes two or more components of Microsoft System Center 2012, the order in which you upgrade those components to System Center 2012 Service Pack 1 (SP1) is very important.”

Personally I recommend using this order also for cumulative updates and update rollups.

Upgrade Path

Read more here: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj628203.aspx

System Center Online Community Resources

Looking for Microsoft Team Blogs, System Center MVPs, Twitter handles, System Center User Groups or Online communities? Chances are you will find it here:

http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/11504.how-to-participate-in-the-system-center-community.aspx

 

SCOM 2012: Think about this before implementing a new monitoring solution.

  1. Own the solution! A monitoring solution represents the current state of your infrastructure. As an infrastructure owner you have to involve yourself in configuration of thresholds, monitor overrides etc. Consultants are great for best practices, presenting various options or as “doers” to save you time. But never let a consultant make decisions for you.
  2. Have a clear vision of what you need to monitor and what not to monitor. Do not let the products capabilities seduce you to do everything at once. Set a goal and identify steps to reach that goal. Make sure each step towards this goal is completed 100%.
  3. It will help you to be more proactive if you are willing to use the product in a proactive way. Update the product when you do changes in your infrastructure, tell the product before implementing changes or downtime (maintenance mode.). To get the reward you have to be willing to change the way you work.

 

 

SCVMM 2012: Clouds… if nothing else group your VMs.

In System Center 2012 Virtual Machine Manager you can create clouds. The basic idea is to scope resources (storage, network, hosts) and security into groups, this is the first step in order to enable self-service and automation. But let’s say you have a small environment, typical storage not managed by SCVMM, 2 hosts in a single cluster, and no security delegation or self-service.

I really recommend you to start looking at grouping your virtual machines into clouds. Even if you in the beginning only use it to organize and sort your virtual machines.

How to Create a cloud:

  • In the VMs and Services view, right click clouds and Select create a cloud. Walk trough the wizard. For grouping purposes, Select Your hosts Group on the “Resources” page and your network on the “logical Networks page”. Then leave everything else default.

SCVMM CLOUD IMG2.JPG

  •  Assign your VM to your cloud under the general tab in the VMs Properties.

SCVMM CLOUD PROP

  • Then you will find your VMs sorted in Clouds 🙂

SCVMM CLOUD IMG1.JPG

 

SCCM 2012: Why don’t you just reboot?

Over the years the Windows operating system have become more stable. Together with hibernation features our users really don’t have to reboot as often as we want. A common practice to “not disturb” our users is to suppress reboot’s at any cost. It feels good in the beginning but pretty soon it becomes a problem. The result is computers stuck with “pending reboots” preventing us from installing new software, and the even bigger issue, as many software updates installs on reboot, we suddenly struggle getting our clients compliant.

Kent Agerlund@Coretech have blogged a about this, and published a great tool that will help you control reboot’s on client. Only reminding users on computers that have not rebooted within a specified timeframe:

Quote from Kent:

“If you do not force a computer restart you might face problems like:

  • Non-compliant computers
  • Computers being in reboot pending mode which might prevent them from installing new software and software updates

If you do force a restart you might face problems like:

  • Very unhappy users
  • Scenarios where you restart while the end-user is using the computer for a demo or presentation
  • End-users calling Servicedesk and complaining about a virus that’s shutting down their computer
  • Restarting computers that are already compliant”

Read the post and download the tool: http://blog.coretech.dk/kea/configuration-manager-shutdown-utility/

MMS 2013: View sessions online

If you are not one of the lucky ones attending MMS 2013 …. Don’t worry, you can still follow the sessions online!

“The Microsoft Management Summit (MMS) brings together the brightest IT professionals from around the world to increase their technical expertise through an intensive week of training led by experts in desktop, device management, datacenter, and cloud technologies.”

http://channel9.msdn.com/Events/MMS/2013

HP Client Integration Kit (CIK) for MS System Center Configuration Manager 2012 SP1

HP is introducing the HP Client Integration Kit (CIK) for MS System Center
Configuration Manager 2012 SP1 to enhance and simply aspects of the OS
deployment process for HP Client PCs (desktops, notebooks, and workstations).
The CIK will be available for download in June, 2013, free of charge.

http://h30507.www3.hp.com/t5/Converged-Infrastructure/How-HP-Client-Integration-Kit-simplifies-client-management-for/ba-p/135167

 

SCCM 2012: EndPoint Protection fails to install on Windows 8

If you find SC 2012 EndPoint Protection fail to install on Windows 8, it may be because of a registry key missing. Troubleshooting a Windows 8 Client I read trough C:\windows\ccm\logs\EndpointProtectionAgent.log I found this error

“Failed to get EP event message under registry key SOFTWARE\Microsoft\CCM\EPAgent”

EndPointError1

As a temporary solution I created an empty package with a program running command line: reg add “HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Microsoft Security Client” and deployed this program to my Windows 8 Clients.

EndPointError2

Installing .NET Framework 3.5 on Windows 8 and Server 2012 without Internet connection.

If you are using the Windows operating system, the .NET Framework may already be installed on your computer. Specifically, the .NET Framework 4.5 is included with Windows 8 and installed on your computer with the Windows 8 operating system. However, if you install an app that requires a specific version of the .NET Framework, the app’s setup program might install the .NET Framework on your computer or prompt you to install it. For example, the .NET Framework 3.5 is not automatically installed with Windows 8. To run apps that require the .NET Framework 3.5 on Windows 8, you must enable version 3.5 on your computer. There are two ways you can do this: by installing or running an app that requires the .NET Framework 3.5 (that is, by installing the .NET Framework 3.5 on demand), or by enabling the .NET Framework 3.5 in Control Panel. Both options require an Internet connection.

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh506443.aspx

Deployment: Office 2013 Silent installation.

You can configure a silent installation (unattended installation) of the MSI-based version of Office 2013 by using the Config.xml file or the Office Customization Tool (OCT). The Config.xml file is used to configure installation tasks and is used only when you run Setup. It is not installed or cached on users’ computers. You can edit the Config.xml file to customize an installation.

Read more: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd630736.aspx

DPM 2012: Throttle bandwidth

In lab or low performance production environments it can be useful to throttle bandwidth between  the backup agent (server) and the DPM server. System Center 2012 Data Protection manager has this feature. Navigate to «Management», right click on a «protection agent», select «Throttle computer».

This can enable you to preform backup and not have to think
about affecting network performance.

DPM_BW1

As you can see in this dialog Box, you can define work hours and non-work hours, then set maximum bandwidth to be used by the DPM agent for each timeframe.

DPM_BW2

SC 2012 Orchestrator with Service Pack 1: Installation guide

This is my installation notes (so far) for System Center 2012 Orchestrator with Service Pack 1.

Before installing, review supported configurations from the official documentation: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh420361.aspx

1. Install SQL Server 2008 R2 or 2012, only Database Engine Service is needed by Orchestrator. SQL_Latin1_General_CP1_CI_AS is the supported collation.

2. Create a domain account and domain Security Group.

Account: scorch-svc (Orchestrator Service Account)
Group: scorch_admins (Security Group to provide Access to Orchestrator)

3. Install Internet Information Services with default role services. Documentation states that the Orchestrator setup engine will install IIS if missing. I’ve seen the setup break on Server 2012 when missing IIS, so I reccommend installing this Component first.

4. Make sure you have .Net framework 3.5 and 4 installed.

5. Mount System Center 2012 Orchestrator With SP1 and run SetupOrchestrator.exe

Orch0

6. Enter License information.

Orch1

7. Read and accept license terms.

Orch2

8. Select features to install (for single server deployment, Select all features)

Orch3

9. Review prerequsite warnings or errors.

Orch4

10. Configure service account (created in step 2 in this guide).

Orch6

11. Specify database server to use, in this example a local SQL instance is installed on the Orchestrator server. Click Test Database Connection to proceed.

Orch7

12. Set DB name, or accept default option.

Orch8

13. Specify Orchestrator users Group (created in step 2)

Orch9

14. Configure or Accept default ports for the Orchestrator web service.

Orch10

15. Specify installation path.

Orch11

16. Select wether to update Orchestrator with Microsoft Update or not.

Orch12

17. Select customer expirience options of your choise.

Orch13

18. Verify selected options in the installation summary, click “install” to start the installation.

Orch14

19. After the installation is complete you can start using Orchestrator, but probably you have to download integration packs to get Access to activities from other products. I use the System Center Integration packs. Download them here:

http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?displaylang=en&id=28725

20. Meged Ezzat have created a walktrough on how to install and publish integration packs. http://blogs.technet.com/b/meamcs/archive/2011/11/19/orchestrator-2012-deployment-amp-configuration-step-by-step-part-5-integration-pack.aspx

 

 

System Center 2012 SP1 Cumulative Update 1 relased

Contains a lot of bug-fixes for System Center 2012 SP1…

Read more: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2785682

For Configuration Manager SP1: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2817245/en (includes updated powershell features).

 

SCOM 2012: Technical Documentation for implementation.

Steve Moore and Byron Ricks has written a document (documentation) for SCOM 2012 planning and implementation. Great document to review before installing System Center 2012 Operations Manager in your lab, demo or production environment.

http://download.microsoft.com/download/3/3/F/33F52373-3A75-422C-969B-61E05EEC5E72/SC2012_OpsMgr_Deployment.pdf

for more technical System Center 2012 Operations Manager documentation, please visit: http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=29256

SCCM 2012: Step-by-Step Example Deployment of the PKI Certificates for Configuration Manager

This step-by-step example deployment, which uses a Windows Server 2008 certification authority (CA), contains procedures to guide you through the process of creating and deploying the public key infrastructure (PKI) certificates that Microsoft System Center 2012 Configuration Manager uses.

Guide: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg682023.aspx

OR, Gabriel Beaver have created his own step-by-step guide with screenshots. http://gabrielbeaver.me/2012/08/sccm-2012-part-ii-certificate-configuration/

 

SCVMM 2012: Virtual Networking

The System Center Virtual Machine Manager Engineering team has started to contribute a blog series.

This post covers the basic steps you need to follow in order to create an isolated network on Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V servers using System Center 2012 SP1- Virtual Machine Manager .

http://blogs.technet.com/b/scvmm/archive/2013/01/08/virtual-networking-in-vmm-2012-sp1.aspx

 

 

SCVMM 2012: HotFixes for Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1

If you manage Server 2008 R2 Sp1 Hyper-V hosts With System Center 2012 Virtual Machine Manager Sp1, you may experience problems.

If you get this error: “-2147024882 0x8007000E Not enough storage is available to complete this operation.”

install this hotfix: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2781512/en

For a complete list of available hotfixes if you are using System Center 2012 Virtual Machine Manager to manage Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V hosts or clusters, visit: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2724596

Hyper-V Best Practise!

When designing a Hyper-V solution it’s a lot to think about regarding network and storage configuration. NetApp writes good best practise documents for Hyper-V. If you are in the process to install or optimize your hyper-v environment, I can reccomend  I really recommend you to read «NetApp Storage Best Practices for Microsoft Virtualization and NetApp SnapManager for Hyper-V» Even if Your Storage vendor is not NetApp 🙂

Get it here: http://www.netapp.com/us/media/tr-3702.pdf

SCCM 2012: Two ways to deploy Linux with SCCM :-)

SCCM have recently launched service pack 1 with Linux agent for management of Enterprise Linux distributions. People ask me about OS deployment as it’s not supported, but still you can kind of do it.

Think of this, you have Windows PE and the ability to run commands in a task sequence. So if you have the tools you can do anything you want. SCCM does it in the same way With .wim files, it’s all about the Tools like dism or imagex. Regarding Linux i’ve  tested two scenarios.

  1. Distribute a Linux Live ISO: Most Linux distributions allows you to run a Live OS from a DVD, for troubleshooting or trial of the operating system. With the BootLoader Grub4Dos you can boot from ISO files. So the only thing you have to do is install this bootloader while in windows pe, copy the Live ISO to your local drive and configure boot loader to boot from it. Reboot to local disk and your Linux Live OS will be loaded.
  2. Actually deploy a image: In Linux you can use DD to create a image of your harddrive. There also is a DD version for DOS. So you can actually create a valid image of your Linux installation and deploy it with SCCM. Please read more on dd here: http://www.linuxweblog.com/dd-image

Be aware, this is kind of stoneage technology, and you need to put some effort into creating your Linux distribution. You will not be able to run task sequence engine within the operating system. But if you are skilled with Linux you may be able to script the agent installation on first boot, then you will have control again 🙂

Example:

1. Create a package in Your environment this package should contain Your Linux Image and DD for dos. (download it here). Do not create a program for the package as it’s not needed. But I recommend you to enable “Copy the content in this package to a package share on distribution Points” this will allow you to run the task sequence directly from DP later. Please read previous blog post regarding this: http://systemcenter.no/?p=331

2. Create a command line task sequence step, this will run diskpart /s diskpartscript.txt.

The diskpart script looks like this:

Select disk 0
clean
 

The task sequence step looks like this (notice i’ve added the Linux deployment package as Reference for the command line step):

3. Use DD (for dos) to extract the image to disk.

4. Deploy the task sequence to unknown or known computers, run ts directly from DP and enjoy.

 

SCCM 2012: Download Linux and Solaris Agent

System Center 2012 Configuration Manager With Service Pack 1 now supports Linux and Solaris Distributions, for server management. You can download the agent here:

http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=36212

UNIX/Linux Client:The following UNIX and Linux versions are supported in this release.

  • RHEL Version 6 (x86 & x64)
  • RHEL Version 5 (x86 & x64)
  • RHEL Version 4 (x86 & x64)
  • Solaris Version 10 (x86 & SPARC)
  • Solaris Version 9 (SPARC)
  • SLES Version 11 (x86 & x64)
  • SLES Version 10 SP1 (x86 & x64)
  • SLES Version 9 (x86)

SCOM 2012: Technical Documentation

Looking for Technical documentation for System Center 2012 Operations Manager? Microsoft have published it all.

Get it here: http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=29256

 
  • Complete Technical Documentation for System Center 2012 SP1 – Operations Manager, last updated January 15, 2013 (pdf & docx)
  • Authoring Guide for System Center 2012 SP1 – Operations Manager, last updated January 15, 2013 (pdf & docx)
  • Deployment Guide for System Center 2012 SP1 – Operations Manager, last updated January 15, 2013 (pdf & docx)
  • Getting Started Guide for System Center 2012 SP1 – Operations Manager, last updated January 15, 2013 (pdf & docx)
  • Key Concepts for System Center 2012 SP1 – Operations Manager, last updated January 15, 2013 (pdf & docx)
  • Operations Guide for System Center 2012 SP1 – Operations Manager, last updated January 15, 2013 (pdf & docx)
  • Supported Configurations for System Center 2012 SP1 – Operations Manager, last updated January 15, 2013 (pdf & docx)
  • What’s New for System Center 2012 SP1 – Operations Manager, last updated January 15, 2013 (pdf & docx)
  • System Center 2012 – Operations Manager Cmdlet Reference, last updated April 1, 2012 (pdf & docx)

Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V: The requested resources is in use.

Recently i’ve upgraded my private lab environment. I have moved from a combination of VMware workstation and oracle virtualbox to a Server 2012 Hyper-V Cluster. So far so good, storage is also upgraded to a NetGear iSCSI NAS, in my environment this has proven to do the trick. Even if you can now use SMB shares in failover clusters, I still use iSCSI.

Recently I ran into this error: «The requested resource is in use». Storage showed status reserved on both hosts, I was unable to bring the resources online. My storage was in a stale state, with both hosts reserving the storage.

So how to solve?

  1. In powershell type, Clear-ClusterDiskReservation –Disk <DiskNumber> on the hyper-v hosts. (disk number from disk management or diskpart)
  2. If this fails, another option in my case was to disconnect the iSCSI storage on one of my hosts claiming ownership. Then I was able to bring the resource online, reconnect iSCSI storage. Problem solved.

BYOD = MYOD?

It’s hard to ignore all the «fuzz» about the «bring your own device» concept. It seems like a user’s dream, and the IT departments worst nightmare. It’s the eternal conflict, users want more freedom and it pro’s want more control. Therefore, to maintain Control, the solution from most IT departments is VDI. In that way users can access a company desktop regardless of what device they are using. And the IT department can maintain full controll.

So I have devices and can bring them, I will have access to company resources and produce my daily work within a VDI company desktop. So far so good, but still my computer will have software that needs to be updated, operating system will need patches and configuration, I will need to maintain a antivirus solution for security compliance, and if my computer crashes I will have to provide a quick way to get up and running for work next day.

As a user I don’t really like the concept of living wihtin company boundaries, and with that the restrictions and policy defined by my IT department. But still I understand it feels somewhat safe. You have a local support system to rely on, adjusted to your needs. It’s something to think about, would you really replace your local IT department with your local hardware vendor?

So is «Bring Your Own Device» also «Manage your own device» ? If you truly should be able to bring what ever device you want, then it’s impossible for the IT department to support you, your device, operating system and your locally installed applications. Then you are stuck with your local vendor and you will have to mange your own device, in one way or the other.

Maybe it’s time to get a new perspective on «self-management» ? 🙂

SCVMM 2012: Quickstart Installation guide

Kevin Holman has written a generic quickstart guide for System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2012. This guide is good to use if you want to install this product for evaluation or proof of concept for a customer.

http://blogs.technet.com/b/kevinholman/archive/2011/09/30/scvmm-2012-quickstart-deployment-guide.aspx

SCVMM Supported configurations:

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg610574.aspx

Server 2012: Initial configuration of windows server core with powershell

Windows Server core is now Microsoft’s preferred choice. Even though we have great remote management tools, we still have to do a initial setup of the server.

Launch: Powershell.exe

1. Give the server a name: rename-computer DemoComputer

2. Give the server a Ipv4 address: New-NetIPAddress -IPAddress 192.168.1.10 -InterfaceAlias “Ethernet” -DefaultGateway 192.168.1.1 -AddressFamily IPv4 -PrefixLenght 24

3. Specify dns server: Set-DnsClientServerAddress -interfaceAlias “Ethernet” -ServerAddresses 192.168.1.1

4. Join server to domain: add-computer -DomainName systemcenter.no

More information: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj592692.aspx

5. If you are getting “WinRM Negotiate authentication error” use following command to add the Remote server to the trusted host list of Your management server:

Set-Item wsman:\localhost\Client\TrustedHosts Server01 -Concatenate -Force

6. If you need to disable the firewall during initial setup: netsh advfirewall set allprofiles state off