Apply a Provisioning Package Silently via MDT/SCCM

After imaging a machine with MDT, it does not get group policy settings until after rebooting. This posed a problem for certain workflows where some settings were needed immediately. The easiest workaround I could find was to create a provisioning package with Windows Configuration Designer. However Microsoft's documentation regarding silent installs lacks the depth needed to be successful (see blue note here). Below are the steps I took to successfully deploy provisioning packages silently with

Find Konica Minolta Copier/Printer Serial via SNMP

I recently needed to find the serial numbers of all of our Konica Minolta copiers and printers. A quick Google search didn't bring up any results so I figured I'd post what I found here. I was able to accomplish this via SNMP on Windows.

First, download SnmpGet (either compile from net-snmp or download the binary). Next launch a command prompt and navigate to where snmpget.exe resides. You can now query the copier/printer

Get List of Users AD Password Expiration with Powershell

Just a couple good Powershell scripts for getting AD user password expirations.

List all users password expiration date (one-liner)

Get-ADUser -filter {Enabled -eq $True -and PasswordNeverExpires -eq $False} –Properties "DisplayName", "mail", "msDS-UserPasswordExpiryTimeComputed" | Select-Object -Property "Displayname","mail",@{Name="ExpiryDate";Expression={[datetime]::FromFileTime($_."msDS-UserPasswordExpiryTimeComputed")}} | Out-GridView -Title "Users Password Expirations"

You can change the Out-GridView cmdlet at the end to export-csv or

How to Split a Spreadsheet into Multiple Sheets or Workbooks based on Column Value

Dealing with data (as in statistics, not storage) is a daily job of sysadmins. I love CSV exports but often times I need to separate the data out by a certain column or split into multiple workbooks/files to send to other staff. For instance, there are 22 branch offices where I work and getting the appropriate data to each building from one spreadsheet used to be a daunting task.

The first macro below (SplitToWorksheets)

Using SAMAccountName to Login to ADFS in Windows Server 2012R2/2016

When setting up Active Directory Federation Services (ADFS), by default it requires that users log in using their User Principal Name (UPN) or using DOMAIN\username. However this can be confusing to users, especially when you're in a single domain environment.

It took me way longer than it should have to figure out how to accomplish this. Hopefully this will help some folks find some more recent info than all the ADFS 2.0 stuff

Migrating/Restoring a Filewave Server Backup (Linux)

NOTE: These instructions are current as of Filewave 11.2.2 on CentOS

  1. Install the same version of Filewave on the new/rebuilt server
  2. Stop the Filewave service:
    sudo fwcontrol server stop
  3. Copy the backup files to the new server (via SCP or SFTP)
  4. Move the Data Folder to the corresponding directory:
    mv /path/to/old/Data\ Folder /fwxserver/
  5. Start the postgres process:
    sudo -u postgres /usr/local/filewave/postgresql/bin/pg_ctl start -w
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How to Disable Focused Inbox in Office 365

Starting April 2017, Microsoft is rolling out a replacement for the Clutter folder in Outlook. This replacement is called the Focused Inbox. If you want to know a bit more, a couple Microsoft articles can be found here and here.

If you're like me and would rather not have this feature, here's how to turn it off:

Disable Focused Inbox for your whole organization

  • Connect to Exchange Online via Powershell (more info)
  • Run Set-OrganizationConfig -FocusedInboxOn

How to Reverse/Mirror Contents of Cell in Excel

This may seem like a weird topic to discuss but I've always found Excel to be highly useful in manipulating data and can often be quicker than writing one-off scripts.

One of the most used features is the Text-to-Columns button (found in the Data ribbon of Excel), which splits tab and comma delimited files into individual columns. But sometimes the values may not all have the same number of columns. For instance, let's look at

How to Enable Serial Console Output in CentOS

In our environment, we have a few caching servers that are distributed across branch offices. These branch offices usually lack a KVM - which means tracking down a monitor, keyboard, mouse, etc. What a pain! If only we could simply hook up a serial cable and use Putty - oh wait we can!

  1. Let's open up our text editor: nano /etc/sysconfig/grub
  2. Find the line labeled GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX and add console=ttyS0 to
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Fixing Exchange 2010 WinRM MaxEnvelopeSize Exceeded Error

Once upon a time, I was trying to make a change to the allowed sender IP address list on our Exchange 2010 server. However every time I tried to add or remove an IP address, I received an error that looked very much like one of the below messages:

  • The WinRM client sent a request to the remote WS-Management service and was notified that the request size exceeded the configured MaxEnvelopeSize quota
  • The response that