Speeding up login times – Group Policy v’s Branded IE

This is the age-old issue of balancing the need to get log in times as quick as possible v’s keeping the M in MOE.  The Environment can be managed to the ‘nth degree but each extra tweak comes at the expense of an extra micro second at login.

For me Management is key as I look after around 3500 student facing and lecture theatre PCs.  Continue reading Speeding up login times – Group Policy v’s Branded IE

Powershell script to query Dell website for Warranty End Date

This little powershell script uses WMI to get the local PCs Service Tag from the bios.  It then queries Dell’s website for the warranty information and loops through each warranty line item to find the latest date.  Once we have the date, it is then written to the registry.  The warranty end date is then ready to be used in BGInfo or exported to a MOE tool such as Altiris NS for easy reporting. Continue reading Powershell script to query Dell website for Warranty End Date

Running 64bit from a 32bit environment

As we know, there’s a little feature in 64 bit windows that auto redirects 32 bit apps to 32 bit versions of system files via the WOW64 file system redirector. This causes some issues when deploying apps via things like older versions of Altiris NS to 64 bit Operating Systems.

This can be overridden via a little known feature called sysnative. Continue reading Running 64bit from a 32bit environment

32 bit ODBC data sources on Windows 7 x64

We had an interesting call come through today with a user unable to configure a Microsoft Access System DSN in the ODBC Data Source Administrator on a Windows 7 x64 PC.
The crux of this issue is that as our Windows 7 SOE is 64bit, and by default the ODBC Data Source Administrator tool in the Control Panel only shows 64bit data source drivers. Continue reading 32 bit ODBC data sources on Windows 7 x64

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