Got money left in the budget? Send it to Microsoft.

I’ll take contributions if you like, but I was really talking about Microsoft’s upcoming events.  You can register now, pay for them now, and attend them next year.  So if you’ve got funds that go away at the end of 2008, look into these events: MMS 2009, April 27-May 1, Las Vegas.  Registration is open…

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ConfigMgr "Install Software Updates" task failing when building a reference machine?

If you are seeing issues with the “Install Sofware Updates” task in a ConfigMgr task sequence that is being used to build a reference computer image, or if you are deploying workgroup (non-domain joined) machines, you’ll need to tweak the task sequence a little to get this to work properly.  The ConfigMgr documentation at http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb693951.aspx…

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Internet Explorer 8 compatibility will be even easier

I’ve really like Internet Explorer 8.  But there are still lots of sites that don’t behave well, requiring the use of compatibility mode.  That’s easy enough for us IT guys, but end users don’t necessarily figure that out.  And the sites aren’t going to be fixed up fast enough to suit everyone.  So the IE…

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Two more certifications, including one on MDT 2008

I mentioned in my MCSA is now MCITP- Server Administrator post that I needed to take exam 70-647 to complete my MCITP: Enterprise Administrator certification.  I completed that one in October, so that completes my Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista certification updates. This week, I took the newly-released 70-635 exam, titled “TS: Microsoft Deployment…

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The computer is too powerful, need to slow it down to run Windows PE 2.x.

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/953700 is one of the more interesting KB articles I’ve read in a while.  It describes a problem where some server-class machines with multiple CPUs and certain Broadcom network adapters and firmware suffer from slow network performance.  The workaround:  Force Windows PE 2.x to run on only one CPU and to ignore all the others. …

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Want to save some time when deploying Windows Vista?

Some people have complained that they don’t want to wait while Windows Vista runs the hardware assessment process (WinSAT) to determine the computer’s Windows Experience Index rating during the initial OS initialization.  Now there is a way that you can avoid this; see http://support.microsoft.com/kb/958011 for more information on the hotfix that is available for this…

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Windows 7 unveiled today

It really does exist, and today we admitted it at the Professional Developer’s Conference in Los Angeles.  See http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/events/pdc/default.mspx for all the PDC-related news, and the refocused Windows Team Blog at http://windowsteamblog.com/ for more specifics on Windows 7.  (If you missed it, there was also a posting about Windows Vista and Server 2008 SP2 last…

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TechEd U.S. 2009 is earlier this year

The dates were posted to the TechEd website, http://www.microsoft.com/events/teched2008/default.mspx, saying that TechEd 2009 would again be one week instead of two as was done last year in Orlando (and as is still done in Europe for TechEd EMEA).  This year it will be earlier too, May 11-15, and be located in Los Angeles.  I can’t…

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MCSA is now "MCITP: Server Administrator"

Remember a few years ago when it was a big deal if you had a Microsoft certification?  Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE) was the big one, with the Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator (MCSA) being the “baby brother”.  MCSA was about managing and troubleshooting; MCSE was about designing and implementing. As always, time marches on, Microsoft…

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"Allow this program to be installed from the Install Software task sequence without being advertised"

If you are trying to install multiple software packages using a ConfigMgr task sequence “Install Software” step, where each of the package and program combinations is stored in a task sequence variable (e.g. PACKAGES001=XXX00001:Install), you might find that they don’t work.  If you go digging through the SMSTS.LOG, you’ll see messages like this: No matching…

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