Function to Create Certificate Template in Active Directory Certificate Services for PowerShell DSC and CMS Encryption

Today I’m cleaning out my code closet. I found this script that I have wanted to share for a while now. Problem Active Directory Certificate Services does not include a template for Document Encryption. This is required for DSC credential encryption and the CMS encryption cmdlets. Current processes require manual effort to create the template….


Top 10 PowerShell DSC Node Events to Monitor

In a previous blog post I demonstrated how to get a list of all possible PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC) events for monitoring. Admittedly, that was an overwhelming list. Today I want to narrow that down to the essentials of DSC monitoring events. These are the events you’re looking for. Recently I was working with…


Compare Group Policy (GPO) and PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC)

What is the difference between Group Policy (GPO) and PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC)? Why would I use one over the other? I hear these questions frequently. Today we are going to fully explore the pros and cons of each. Is GPO going the way of the floppy disk? Let’s find out. The Contenders Group…


Pro Tip: PowerShell DSC Events to Monitor

The Problem I need to monitor PowerShell DSC health on all of my nodes. But I do not want to wait for every possible event to happen in production to catch it and add it to my monitoring event list. The Options There are many options for monitoring PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC) status on…

Gnarly Innards: How to live debug PowerShell DSC configurations without using Enable-DSCDebug

The Problem Have you ever needed to debug a PowerShell Desired State Configuration that appeared to be hanging when it was applying? At that point it’s a little too late to run Enable-DscDebug. Here’s how to debug it anyway… The Solution On the box applying the active configuration you can see the LCM is busy….

PowerShell DSC 101: Using the Script Resource to Enable the Windows Firewall

Learning PowerShell Desired State Configuration PowerShell DSC is one of my favorite topics to teach, because the technology is simply amazing. Usually I do not have enough time with a customer to teach all of the built-in resources. I would guess that the Script resource is one of the least understood. Today’s post outlines a…


Using Credentials with PsDscAllowPlainTextPassword and PsDscAllowDomainUser in PowerShell DSC Configuration Data

Warnings and errors, oh my! If you have written a DSC configuration containing a credential, then you have likely seen error messages about plain text passwords. And recently a warning was added when using domain credentials. In today's post we explain how to handle these appropriately using DSC configuration data. Where is the documentation for…


DevOps for n00bs (ie. Windows people like me)

Tidal Wave: DevOps There is a tidal wave coming to Windows IT Pros, especially those supporting infrastructure. That tidal wave is called DevOps. I’ve spent the last year wiping out in the surf of the tidal wave, trying to learn the lingo. As a Windows ops guy I’ve been attending non-Microsoft events where I feel…


PowerShell DSC FAQ: Sorting Out Certificates

Hello, everyone. This week I posted over on the PowerShell Team Blog. One of the most common questions I get regarding PowerShell Desired State Configuration is about certificates. What kind do I need? How many? Where do they go? In this blog post we will sort out certificate requirements for PowerShell DSC. You can read…


Links for DevOps Columbus

These are some helpful links for folks new to PowerShell and Desired State Configuration. At the bottom is a bonus section of related *nix links as well. To quote our CEO, “Microsoft loves Linux.” Microsoft Ignite 2015 Conference – DevOps Sessions Microsoft PowerShell Team Blog Download the latest version of PowerShell (WMF) and Release…