Robert Marshall's Blog


Home for my ConfigMgr and Industry related ramblings


Owner of SMSMarshall Ltd, active Enterprise Management MVP

    • Thu, Apr 20 2017

    LogLauncher 3.5–In development

    LogLauncher is back in the development dry-dock for a refitting, no small change indeed, as I’m adding in a feature request from Zeng (Sandy) , the ability to scan as many devices as you want, and see them in the navigation tree on the left so you can hop around them removing the need to open several LogLauncher processes to accomplish the same result, something like this working code example: Fortunately the code-base...
    • Sat, Apr 15 2017

    Issue with upgrading ConfigMgr Current Branch Build

    Was onsite with a customer recently, and had failure trying to upgrade their Build 1610 Current Branch Hierarchy to Build 1702. The problem was being reported in the SMS_DMP_Downloader log as follows: Download redist for update 0fb0a697-662d-45c2-a96c-8c95e5944df7 SMS_DMP_DOWNLOADER 05-Apr-17 12:42:14 PM 19500 (0x4C2C) ERROR: Failed to download redist for 0fb0a697-662d-45c2-a96c-8c95e5944df7 with command /RedistUrl http...
    • Sun, Apr 2 2017

    ConfigMgr and Supported Platforms

    Things turn over so rapidly now, it would seem, and as we iterate forwards with new releases of ConfigMgr using the Servicing channel, we suddenly get hit with an announcement that support for something important or at least popular has been dropped, making us feel that things are moving too quickly, after a pace that hasn’t changed much for a decade. The following comes from the What’s new in Version 1702 documentation...
    • Sun, Apr 2 2017

    ConfigMgr–Software Update Point Affinity

    There are quite a few cool features in the Build 1702 release of System Center Configuration Manager Current Branch, the one I’m going to go over here is the feature that gives Software Update Points Boundary Group-awareness , or boundary affinity. This complements the already boundary group-aware Distribution Point, Management Point and State Migration Point roles, and with this introduction, we finally have usage control...
    • Tue, Mar 28 2017

    Optimise ConfigMgr Client Deployment using BranchCache

    An overlooked part of content management for ConfigMgr / SCCM is Client Deployment and Client Upgrade. This is mostly because, organisations hardly feel the hit of pushing out the ConfigMgr client for the first time, or when updating the client to a higher version, having well-connected sites and fast and wide communication paths to most of the network. I’ve witnessed many times a Client Push take place to a high density...
    • Sun, Mar 5 2017

    Running up a test environment for Intune and ConfigMgr Current Branch or Technical Preview

    I setup Intune quite a lot for Intune Hybrid POC’s, and I thought I’d run off a simple guide for those that want to spin this stuff up in their own lab at home. The goal of this guide is to get it running so you can tinker with the features available through Mobile Device Management (MDM), this isn’t a guide on how to get Intune and ConfigMgr setup for a production environment, and it falls short of covering what you...
    • Tue, Feb 28 2017

    ConfigMgr / SCCM CB Build1610 Hotfix 4010155

    The ConfigMgr team just released a hotfix rollup for ConfigMgr Current Branch Build 1610, KB4010155. (28/02/2017) Lots of little changes, worth reading the list in the KB Update rollup for System Center Configuration Manager current branch, version 1610 Key for those of you that have Management Point Replica’s in place, the SPROC is fixed
    • Mon, Feb 27 2017

    ConfigMgr Technical Preview Build 1702

    Hot off the press comes Build 1702 for ConfigMgr Technical Preview! Announcement Documentation Try It
    • Thu, Feb 23 2017

    LogLauncher 3.1

    I’ve released a point release for LogLauncher, it contains the following: Custom Locations now works on remote scans, instead of just local scans Progressive search implemented in the Log View, begin typing the log name to see it Monitoring in progress notifications introduced, red text in bottom left and applications title bar text changed to alert that monitoring it taking place The Product or Category being monitored...
    • Mon, Feb 20 2017

    LogLauncher V3.0

    A lot of my free time of late has been going into many things, one of which was redoing LogLauncher with modern ribbon look, and adding in some much needed functionality. Just a moment ago I updated the TechNet Gallery with V3.0, here’s what it looks like now: It has some strong features: Get at all ConfigMgr\SCCM logs easily, quickly Visualise changes to SCCM\ConfigMgr logs over time using the monitoring feature Open...
    • Sun, Dec 18 2016

    ConfigMgr Technical Preview 1612–Features–Recognise Deployment-blocking executables

    I needed a brief moment to think of a suitable way to describe the feature for this posts title, as its pre-release name is Prevent installation of an application if a specified program is running , not as catchy as its in-console name of Installer Handling , which I decided not to use as it isn’t descriptive enough, and may not be the final name for the feature, and decided upon Recognise Deployment-blocking executables...
    • Sun, Dec 11 2016

    Another “life made easy” tool

    Finished up coding Version 2 of the Log Launcher in readiness for a weekend release. Weekends are not the best time to release tools I’ve found, but heck why sit on it a whole weekend waiting for Monday I wrote this tool for the ...
    • Sun, Oct 16 2016

    ConfigMgr Current Branch and Long Term Servicing Branch–LTSB or not to LTSB

    Put simply, literally just a handful of customers will be opting to install System Center Configuration Manager Long-Term Service Branch. For 99% of the rest of us, Current Branch is the install base that should be chosen. It’s where the action is at. A recent Enterprise Mobility blog post on TechNet Blogs, described the Current Branch (CB) and Long-Term Service Branch (LTSB) ‘servicing’ models: If I was to have to distil...
    • Fri, Sep 30 2016

    ConfigMgr Boundary Groups revisited

    System Center Configuration Manager Technical Preview Build 1609 was just released, and one of the most exciting enhancements, as an architect, is the redefinition of how a Boundary Group behaves. Note that there is a bug with Boundary Groups ...
    • Tue, Sep 20 2016

    ConfigMgr Port Checker–CheckPort

    Finding that I often do quick port tests related to ConfigMgr installations @ customer sites, and my traditional approach was to use TELNET and NETSTAT together, checking for ports marked as SYN (no synchronisation packet came back) as an indicator that the port is blocked or not being listened on, so I thought, why don’t I write a new (extensible) Tcp port checker to do the job for me. Falling back to the classic Tcp...
    • Tue, Aug 23 2016

    ConfigMgr Technical Preview 1608 – Bag of awesomeness

    Hey you! ConfigMgr Current Branch Technical Preview build 1608 has released . I highly recommend building a lab VM to host a technical preview build, seeketh out a guide from Niall Brady and others on how to setup the Technical Preview, having one so you can check out impending features is the way to be super cool and be up on the latest product developments. Here’s a run down of the features available for tire kicking...
    • Tue, Aug 9 2016

    ConfigMgr and the Cloud Proxy Point

    Technical Preview 5 using Build 1606 or 1607 let's you play around with the new Cloud Proxy feature, and I thought I’d run up a guide on this awesome feature to help others reach out to play with it a bit more easily, as it is a very enabling architectural element for us to have in the design toolkit and worth checking out. I found the release notes to be a little short on a few details when I got this guide underway...
    • Sun, Jul 31 2016

    Push-based Replica Management Point

    I decided a while back that when I finally set about to publically document the pathway to enable a new type of Replica Management Point in ConfigMgr, that I wouldn’t go into much detail explaining what a Replica Management Point is, or ...
    • Thu, Jul 14 2016

    I Am Back!

    After a long holiday away from blogging, I am back! Over the next few months I plan on overviewing all the cool Technical Preview features, as well as rocking on back to Current Branch to kick the tyres on the super awesome functionality that is bundled. One technology I haven’t covered much outside of work is Intune. I’m really liking how that technology is progressing, and I plan on pushing out a few posts over the...
    • Mon, May 23 2016

    WSUS and KB3159706 - ESD decryption provision

    Be aware, some of my customers and others in the community have been reporting issues once KB3159706 is deployed to their WSUS servers. This is a known issue, and you’ll need to do the manual steps at the end of the KB3159706 article to get your WSUS server operational again. This patch replaces KB3148812 which kind of had some ‘issues’. Here is an example of the kind of whining you’ll get if you connect to WSUS once...
    • Fri, Mar 11 2016

    ConfigMgr Build 1602– Deploy overview

    Today I see that ConfigMgr current Branch B1602 released, I installed it onto 1511 today, and thought I’d put together a brief guide to provide a light overview of the installation process, showing how easy it is now that it is integrated into the product . Configuration Manager as a Service (CaaS) really is kicking in, with the flow of change ramping up. The actual Updates and Servicing feature entirety relies on the...
    • Sat, Mar 5 2016

    ConfigMgr B1511 and On-Premise MDM

    I thought I’d cover On premise Mobile Device Management using ConfigMgr Build 1511. So let’s take a look. The simplified list of the pro’s and con’s of mobile device management versus full client management, laid...
    • Tue, Feb 23 2016

    ConfigMgr–Updates and Servicing - Servicing KB3122637 using the Easy Setup Channel

    Microsoft have just released a hotfix (KB3122637) to resolve an issue around support for the Exchange Connector, that impacts both the older and new version of ConfigMgr. I’ll use this hotfix to demo the Updates and Servicing feature , also known as the Easy Setup Channel, and it really does make an administrators life easier. This is something I’ve wanted for a very long time, to integrate updates so that we don’t have...
    • Sun, Jan 10 2016

    System Center Store–Proxy blocking resolved

    I solved two problems affecting System Center Store this week. System Center Store uses a specific URL to fetch the zipped and encrypted XML Manifest file from the web, this URL (a Microsoft owned domain, SharePoint farm) is rated as Script\Medium risk by BlueCoat, which causes it to be blocked by some companies Proxy servers, depending on how they have configured the categories for blocking. This caused the tool to fail...
    • Tue, Jan 5 2016

    How do I find all these great ConfigMgr free tools

    Some time back I wrote a free content downloader (superb if I don’t say so myself!) that currently contains 141 of the finest tools, scripts and ‘things’ that make us engineers go “Cool”. Key features that make me want to reuse this tool are: No need to have to remember all the web locations for various tooling and content when I visit a customer Takes the clicks and pain out of getting content and tooling, just select...