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A new home for Technical Posts

I’ve decided to take things to the next level and make a whole new site for any Technical posts. is an awesome site (and why wouldn’t it be?) but I think something a little more professional was in order for my career related endeavors. Please check it out, comment, pass it on to friends, link to it on Facebook or Google+.  I would love to see that site turn into something useful to others.


As for this page, well it’ll live on for now but expect to see become my photography home. will probably take over but for now it will still be it’s own sub site.

DHCP Training

Setting up a home lab and getting everyhting to actually work and be a little bit of a pain. Even more sore when you’re not the only one who needs to use the resources on that network… YouTube has actually been an awesome resource for learning how to configure everything. Of course, some clips are better than others but I personally like this series of videos. I’ve only worked with the DHCP clips but I’ll be back for the rest once I find some more free time.


Here’s a link to the whole Server 2008 listing:


MDT 2012

While browsing though the Technet site I stumbled across a some information on Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2012.  I’m really looking forward to trying out some of the new features that are included in this release, but one in particular has my attention.  MDT 2012 will work with Local GPO backups from Microsoft Security Compliance Manager (SCM) and apply them durring the imaging process.  To me this is absolutely amazing (geek side showing through here…)!  I’ve worked on projects in the past where this would have made life so much easier.  To anyone who is working on a large deployment of workgroup based machines (where Domain GPO’s won’t do you any good) check out MDT 2012, it might save you some time.

MDT Home


MDT & LTICleanup.wsf

Interesting find the other day.  While trying to create an autologon for a project I’m assigned to I ran into an issue where the laptop would not accept an changes to the Winlogon key values.  Here is the scenario:

  1. Image machine using MDT
  2. after receive the successfully completed notification run a registry merge to create the autologin
  3. Reboot the machine
The computer would never log on to the specified account on its own until I ran the registry merge a second time!
After testing nearly everything under the sun and involving Microsoft as well it was discovered that the LTICleanup.wsf script clears the autologon entry from MDT and for some reason was erasing the entry that I was making.  The solution for me?  Customize the LTICleanup.wsf file to leave the autologon information alone and use my registry merge file to change it to the proper account.
Simple 2 min fix for a problem that plagued me for days, isn’t IT wonderful!

MDT – Three strikes and you’re out!

Building custom operating system images is a lot of fun.  I enjoy the challenge that it presents and the frustration of working out the small issues.  The past few days have presented me with a rather interisting problem that even relentless searching on Google couldn’t resolve.  I found out today that Windows 7 can only have sysprep run against it a total of three times before odd things start to happen.  Maybe this was common knowledge to some system admins but it sure is hard to find documented proof of this.

In my case it was an administrator account that wouldn’t auto logon to finish the deployment.  The account was left as disabled even though the unattend.xml file clearly was setup to enable the administrator account.  It took a support call to Microsoft and a good long conversation with one of their engineers before we came to this conclusion.

So what is the proper way to create, capture, deploy, update, capture, etc…?

According to the Microsoft engineer I was working with they recommend building your image in a virtual environment and using the snapshot feature before running sysprep against Windows.  When you need to go back and update the image later on you can restore to that snapshot, make your changes and take a new snapshot before syspreping and capturing again.  This will always keep your rearm count down and you won’t have to worry about any of the strange issues associated with it.

SO, I get to start that project over again now but at least I’ve learned something new and hopefully I can setup a process that will perform better in the end.


PS: I am aware that there are other ways to get around the rearm count issue, such as setting the SkipRearm parameter to 1 in the unattend.xml file.  These methods work but they still are not recommended by Microsoft.

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