Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Happy New Year (2016)

From Henk's blog (and sponsors) we wish you all a Happy New Year! Thanks for visiting my blog, and hope you liked all information last year about Microsoft System Center and Microsoft Intune.

Expect more to come in 2016 again!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Doing a ConfigMgr 2012 R2 to 1511 migration on another server

Recently I did a ConfigMgr 2012 R2 to 1511 migration. Case is, it was needed to be installed on a new server. This new server has a different computername and IP-address and different partitions as well. When you want to recover an existing ConfigMgr installation, you need to have a server with the same computername, IP-address and partitions too. Therefore I have choosen not to re-use the ConfigMgr back-up, but using migrations tools.

Let's have a look at current situation first. The existing server is build on Windows Server 2008 R2, SQL Server 2008 R2 and ConfigMgr 2012 R2, where the Primary server installation is separated from SQL installation. You may upgrade SQL Server in-place with Microsoft support, but an in-place Windows Server upgrade is not supported. Therefore a new server with a current (2012 R2) server installation is needed. When using Windows Server 2012 an in-place upgrade to 2012 R2 is supported. Otherwise not!

When building a new server, and there's a need to use the existing ConfigMgr database, the computername, IP-address and partitions must be same. Because I want to change the name and partition both, recovery is not possible. Therefore I used a new server build on Windows Server 2012 R2, SQL Server 2014 SP1 and and ConfigMgr 1511. During installation a new Site code and name is requested. The existing name cannot be re-used.

After installation start the migration tools, and migrate all objects needed to the new server. Remember you cannot migrate collections when coming from ConfigMgr 2012. For some reason that is possible only from ConfigMgr 2007 environments. Other objects migrate fine indeed. After migration remember to update ConfigMgr client too, so management can be done from the new server.

All went fine during this migration. Hope it helps!

Update 28-12-2015: Within the Object migration task, collections can be selected as well. As asked by Conor O'Farrell within the comments, both deployments and collections can be migrated successfully. On my software package however the program was disabled after migration, without the possibility to enable it during migration. So yes, you can migrate all stuff needed from ConfigMgr 2012 R2 to 1511. Just great!

Sources used:
Backup and Recovery in Configuration Manager
How to move the ConfigMgr 2012 site database to a new SQL server
Supported configurations for System Center Configuration Manager
Planning a Migration Job Strategy in System Center 2012 Configuration Manager

Thursday, December 17, 2015

How to remove Windows and Office updates with ConfigMgr

I'm using ConfigMgr for patch management a lot, however sometimes there are updates that needs to be removed as well. Within ConfigMgr you can use 'Edit membership' to remove already deployed updates from existing Software Update Groups, but what to do when updates are installed on systems already? Interesting question and there is a solution for this as well.

When Windows updates are deployed already, do the following:
-Create a new custom task sequence
-Add a Run command line step in it
-Use the command: C:\Windows\System32\wusa.exe /uninstall /kb:<kb number>/quiet /norestart in it
-Deploy the task sequence to your systems

When Office updates are deployed however, the proces will be a little different:
-Create a new custom task sequence
-Add a Run command line step in it

-But now it comes:

Start regedit and do a search on the kb number. This can be found in HKLM\ Software\ Microsoft\ Windows\ CurrentVersion\ Uninstall\ for x86 systems and HKLM\ Software\ WOW6432Node\ Microsoft\ Windows\ CurrentVersion\ Uninstall\  for x64 systems.

Have a look for the Uninstallstring there, which is like: "C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\OFFICE15\Oarpmany.exe" /removereleaseinpatch "{GUID1}" "{GUID2}" "1033" "0"

-Use both GUIDs and use them in the following command line: msiexec /package {GUID1} MSIPATCHREMOVE={GUID2} /qb /norestart
-Deploy the task sequence to your systems

After that the Windows and/or Office update will be removed succesfully!

Source: Teh Wei King

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Issue with Windows ADK for Windows 10 (Version 1511) in ConfigMgr

When using ConfigMgr 2012 SP2 or R2 SP1, and Windows 10 needs to be deployed, Windows 10 ADK is needed as well. This because the deployment tools are not forward-compatible; you need to use a Windows 10 boot image to deploy a Windows 10 OS image. When searching for the Windows 10 ADK however, it's possible you download the wrong one! Within Version 1511 (Build 10.1.10586.0) there's an serious issue that blocks a specific ConfigMgr OS deployment scenario from Software Center.

Therefore it's needed to use Version RTM (Build 10.0.26624.0). You should continue to use the original release of the Windows 10 ADK, which is supported for OS deployments including Windows 10, version 1511. When downloading adksetup.exe, just check the version before installing deployment tools! (details tab)

Version RTM
Version 1511

As mentioned on the Configuration Manager Team Blog, the new Configuration Manager 1511 is also affected by the ADK issue. Please check that post. We will update it when we have further information. You should continue to use the original release of the Windows 10 ADK, which is supported for OS deployments including Windows 10, version 1511. This older version of the Windows 10 ADK can still be downloaded directly from the Microsoft Download Center

Have a look on Microsoft Technet for more information:
Issue with the Windows ADK for Windows 10, version 1511

More blogposts about Windows ADK:
Update ConfigMgr 2012 R2 SP1 with Windows 10 boot images

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Installing ConfigMgr as a service (version 1511) first experience

Since ConfigMgr as a service (version 1511) is released, installation and upgrade can be done. I did a installation in my environment already, to see the difference with ConfigMgr 2012. Let's have a look at my experiences so far:

Splash.hta hasn't been changed, but Version 1511 is visible now! Installation (in my case) is done in 27 minutes, which is quite normal.

During installation 'Usage Data' is showed. It enables Microsoft to automatically collect diagnostics and usage information over the Internet. Enhanced mode is the default data collection level, but Basic and Full membership is possible too.

The new Service Connection point brings monthly updates in ConfigMgr and Intune more easily then before. When Online, new updates are applied and Usage Data (as mentioned before) is collected.

After installation Version 1511 is showed, which is the new ConfigMgr. Have a look at my other blogposts the new ConfigMgr also:
- What to expect from ConfigMgr as a service (version 1511)
- ConfigMgr and SCEP (version 1511) Generally Available now!
- My experience with ConfigMgr 2016 (Technical Preview 3) so far

For more information on 'Usage Data' have a look here:
Reference for System Center Configuration Manager Setup

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

What to expect from ConfigMgr as a service (version 1511) and new features

ConfigMgr 1511 (better known as ConfigMgr as a service) is released yesterday. Have a look on my earlier blogpost for that. Let's have a look at some new features known so far:

-ConfigMgr is a 'as-a-service' solution from now on!
-ConfigMgr is called 1511 because of versioning, which is YYMM
-Microsoft has the ability to update ConfigMgr when needed
-With a Maintenance Window you can choose when the update is done!
-No complex individual upgrades are needed anymore

Windows 10 support
-It has full support for Windows 10 (provisioning, servicing, imaging)
-An in-place upgrade task sequence is available by default
-Windows 10 on-premises MDM possible, but Intune subscription is still needed
-Windows 10 servicing possible and dashboard integrated
-Both Endpoint Protection and Windows Defender management

Updates and servicing:
-No servicepacks, CU's and hotfixes needs to be installed anymore
-Client deployment monitoring in the console (cool feature)
-No reboots are needed when update ConfigMgr with new functionality
-Preferred management points in ConfigMgr possible (new feature)

Other new features:
-Multiple deployments for Automatic Deployment Rules :)
-Cluster aware patch management (instead of using WSUS)
-Combined Software center and Application catalog (finally)
-and much, much more...

Because Microsoft is moving away from Silverlight (using HTML5 instead) no Application Catalog (as second Software Center) is needed anymore, but both Application Catalog roles still needs to be installed. Microsoft is using a unifying Software Center now, which can handle both packages and applications. That's great for end user experience if you ask me! It can be enabled in Client settings.

Migration is possible from 2007 (side-by-side) and 2012 (in-place) with the recommendation to run the latest Cumulative Update.

Have a look at What’s new on the Configuration Manager horizon (session by @Tim_DK) for more information!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

ConfigMgr and SCEP (version 1511) Generally Available now!

As for today (December 8th) ConfigMgr and SCEP (version 1511) are available! They can be downloaded from the Microsoft Evaluation Center, MSDN, and Volume Licensing Service Center. ConfigMgr 1511 (YYMM versioning) was designed to work with Windows 10, and gives you multiple options to deploy, update, and manage Windows 10 in the way that makes sense for your business.

With the new ConfigMgr (ConfigMgr as a service) it's no longer needed to install servicepacks, cumulative updates and additional hotfixes. With the Service connection point (connects ConfigMgr to Microsoft cloud services, used for Microsoft Intune, and to update and service your ConfigMgr installation) this will be done easier from now on! Have a look at this blogpost for more information on that.

This release provides key new capabilities:
Deploy/upgrade/provision Windows 10: ConfigMgr supports a variety of fast, efficient ways to deploy or upgrade devices to Windows 10.
Keep Windows 10 up-to-date: Once devices are running Windows 10, enterprises must keep them up-to-date to ensure they are properly secured.
More frequent and easier to install updates: ConfigMgr is now designed to make it easier to update without going through complex individual upgrades.
Manage Windows 10: You can manage devices using the traditional ConfigMgr agent and, when integrated with Microsoft Intune, also via cloud or on-premises MDM.

ConfigMgr provides an improved unified device management platform for customers using ConfigMgr integrated with Microsoft Intune to manage PCs, servers, and mobile devices. This release enables faster updates to bring new Intune features to your hybrid deployments.

Have a look at Removed and Deprecated Features for Configuration Manager to see differences between ConfigMgr 2012 and 1511.

Have a look for more information:
System Center Configuration Manager Overview
System Center Configuration Manager Team Blog

Monday, December 7, 2015

Failed to retrieve the package list on the distribution point

When looking at Content Status of distribution points, you may see a warning status with the following message: Failed to retrieve the package list on the distribution point. Or the package list in content library doesn't match the one in WMI. Review smsdpmon.log for more information about this failure.

This because of a mismatch between the ConfigMgr content library and WMI. You can enable content verification, but after a while the warnings are still there. There is however a solution available, but not default in the ConfigMgr console. Let's have a look at it.

When looking in smsdpmon.log you will see the packages which are out-of-sync or doesn't exist anymore. When having multiple distribution points, there may be different issues as well.

In my case I started a PowerShell script, which can be found here:

After running the script from Peter33 and start content validation some days later, the issue was gone. Hope it helps!

Thursday, December 3, 2015

iOS 9 Extensions installation issue in ConfigMgr with Intune (Hybrid scenario)

Last month Microsoft released the iOS 9 Intune extension for ConfigMgr. At a customer with Hybrid scenario (ConfigMgr with Intune) the following happens when opening the ConfigMgr console. A prompt is displayed that a new extension is available, with the choice to install it right away, or open the console in read-only mode. When select -install- an error message is displayed, and you can start all over again. Let's have a look at this.
The first message displayed is "Extensions for Microsoft Intune have been enabled or disabled for this site. To update this console with the changes, click Yes. To continue without updating the console, click No. The console will be restarted in read-only mode."
When select Install the following message is displayed: "The feature task requires that you close the Configuration Manager console. Close all open Configuration Manager consoles and retry the operation".

Trick is no ConfigMgr consoles are open, nothing seems to happen and reopening the console would bring me back to the start again!

Solution for this is to start an elevated (admin) command prompt and navigate to C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Configuration Manager\AdminConsole\bin. Run AdminUI.ExtensionInstaller.exe /Q from there. After that the console can be opened fine, and no popup is displayed anymore.

Maybe useful for future updates too :-)