Quick tip: subnet and ConfigMgr boundary for Direct Access clients

I’ve seen this morning the following blog post about boundaries in Configuration Manager for Direct Access clients.

I’d like to add more info on this topic because I’ve done the same in my environment a few days ago.

Gerry Hampson shows that he gets the ipv6 prefix directly in the properties of a Configuration Managment client in the ConfigMgr Admin console.
He made here an assumption. Having IPv6 addresses reported in Configuration Manager assumes that you have an IPv6 based DNS server where AAAA records are created for your Direct Access clients.
When you don’t have an IPv6 DNS server, you don’t have this info in the ConfigMgr client properties:

Where do I get the client ipv6 prefix ?

You can get it on your Direct Access server(s) with the following cmdlet

Get-RemoteAccess | select  ClientIPv6Prefix

Easy, isn’t it? 8-)

Don’t forget! It may seem pretty obvious but…
Before adding the IPv6 prefix as a ConfigMgr boundary, add it first to your Active Directory Sites and Services subnets.
This way your Direct Access clients will immediately know with what Global Catalog and Domain controllers they should talk to.

Fix the infamous 0x800f0906 or ‘the source files could not be downloaded’ error

In September 2014, Microsoft released MS14-046 that would prevent you from enabling the .Net Framework 3.5 on Windows Server 2012 R2, 2012, Windows 8 and 8.1.

It was reported by this blog post:

http://blogs.technet.com/b/askpfeplat/archive/2014/09/29/attempting-to-install-net-framework-3-5-on-windows-server-2012-r2-fails-with-error-code-0x800f0906-or-the-source-files-could-not-be-downloaded-even-when-supplying-source.aspx

…and was recently updated to tell us that there’s a hotfix available now on http://support2.microsoft.com/kb/3005628

What’s the problem?

You cannot enable the .Net Framework either from Windows Update source or any other local sources (WSUS, the Sources\SXS folder of your Windows ISO image).
And you get the infamous 0x800f0906 or ‘the source files could not be downloaded’ error :-(

What caused it

How to fix the problem (official guidance)

At the end of the blog post, there’s an extra recommendation you could follow. (Remember, it’s not the first time that we get the 0x800f0906 error when enabling .Net Framework3.5)

Let’s see some PowerShell based tips to see how to troubleshoot and fix this :-)

Is .Net 3.5 installed on Windows Server 2012 R2 ?

Get-WindowsFeature | Where Name -match "Net-Frame"

Is .Net 3.5 installed on Windows 8.1 ?

Get-WindowsOptionalFeature -Online | 
Where FeatureName -match "^NetFx(3|4-)"

Is the offending MS14-046 update installed on my system ?

# For Windows 2012R2 and Windows 8.1
Get-HotFix | Where HotfixID -match  "2966828"
# For Windows 2012 and Windows 8
Get-HotFix | Where HotfixID -match  "2966827"

If there’s no result, it means that it’s not installed (good news).

How can I reproduce the issue on my Windows Server 2012 R2 ?

# Either install from local sources\sxs folder
Mount-DiskImage -ImagePath .\en_windows_server_2012_r2_vl_with_update_x64_dvd_4065221.iso
dir D:\
Install-WindowsFeature -Name NET-Framework-Core -Source D:\sources\sxs -Restart:$false -Verbose
# or from Windows Update
Install-WindowsFeature -Name NET-Framework-Core -Source "Windows Update" -Restart:$false -Verbose

What can I see in the logs

"dism","cbs" | foreach {
 sls -Pattern "0x800f090(e|6)" -Path "$($env:systemroot)\logs\$($_)\$($_).log"
}

NB: sls is the alias of the select-string cmdlet (grep for Windows :-D )

Uninstall the offending update using wusa.exe

 wusa /uninstall /kb:2966828 /quiet /norestart
Get-WinEvent -MaxEvents 3 -LogName Setup |
Select -Expand Message


NB: no reboot is required :-)

Uninstall the offending update using DISM cmdlets

Get-WindowsPackage -Online |
Where 'PackageName' -match "2966828" |
Remove-WindowsPackage -Online -Verbose -NoRestart

Next steps?

  • Enable the .Net Framework 3.5 feature
  • # Install from local sources\sxs folder
    Install-WindowsFeature -Name NET-Framework-Core -Source D:\sources\sxs -Restart:$false -Verbose
    

  • Install all security updates required for .Net Framework 3.5 including the offending update previously uninstalled
  • $UpdatesFromMU = Get-WindowsUpdate -FromMU:$true
    $UpdatesFromMU | Select Title,@{
        l='Category';e={$_.Categories | Where { -not($_.Parent) } | Select -Expand Name}
    } | Where Category -match "Security" | Out-GridView
    

    NB: I’ve used the Get-WindowsUpdate function from this post

Follow-up on downloading Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit (Windows ADK) 8.1 (September 2014)

There’s a new release of the Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit (Windows ADK) 8.1 this month.
I’ve seen a blog post from Johan Arwidmark about this new release:

http://www.deploymentresearch.com/Research/tabid/62/EntryId/187/What-rsquo-s-new-in-the-4th-release-of-Windows-ADK-8-1.aspx

I just came back from holidays and have prepared the updated code before my holidays but hadn’t time to blog about it :-|

What did I change in the code? Not many things.
I’ve removed duplicate entries in the here-strings and I’m now using a $PatchLevel variable to keep track of the current version.

#Requires -Version 4
#Requires -RunAsAdministrator 
   
Function Get-ADKFiles {
[CmdletBinding()]    
param(
    [parameter(Mandatory)]
    [system.string]$TargetFolder
)
Begin {
    $HT = @{}
    $HT += @{ ErrorAction = 'Stop'}
    # Validate target folder
    try {
        Get-Item $TargetFolder @HT | Out-Null
    } catch {
        Write-Warning -Message "The target folder specified as parameter does not exist"
        break
    }

    # April 2014: 8.100.26629
    $PatchLevel = "8.100.26866"

}
   
Process {
    $adkGenericURL = (Invoke-WebRequest -Uri http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=313081 -MaximumRedirection 0 -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue)
 
   
    # 302 = redirect as moved temporarily
    if ($adkGenericURL.StatusCode -eq 302) {
       
        # Currently set to http://download.microsoft.com/download/6/A/E/6AEA92B0-A412-4622-983E-5B305D2EBE56/adk/
        $MainURL = $adkGenericURL.Headers.Location
   
        $InstallerURLs = DATA {
            ConvertFrom-StringData @'
                0=0302dc615b0a5fd4810430b2cdacb5e3.cab
                1=036c618de505eeb40cca35afad6264f5.cab
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                86=Application Compatibility Toolkit-x64_en-us.msi
                87=Application Compatibility Toolkit-x86_en-us.msi
                88=Assessments on Client-x86_en-us.msi
                89=Assessments on Server-x86_en-us.msi
                90=b0189bdfbad208b3ac765f88f21a89df.cab
                91=b3892d561b571a5b8c81d33fbe2d6d24.cab
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                99=c6babfeb2e1e6f814e70cacb52a0f923.cab
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                106=d5abe4833b23e13dc7038bde9c525069.cab
                107=dotNetFx45_Full_x86_x64.exe
                108=e5f4f4dc519b35948be4500a7dfeab14.cab
                109=e65f08c56c86f4e6d7e9358fa99c4c97.cab
                110=ea9c0c38594fd7df374ddfc620f4a1fd.cab
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                112=ed711e0a0102f1716cc073671804eb4c.cab
                113=eebe1a56de59fd5a57e26205ff825f33.cab
                114=f2a850bce4500b85f37a8aaa71cbb674.cab
                115=f480ed0b7d2f1676b4c1d5fc82dd7420.cab
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                117=f8f7800500b180b8a2103c40ce94f56a.cab
                118=fa7c072a4c8f9cf0f901146213ebbce7.cab
                119=fbcf182748fd71a49becc8bb8d87ba92.cab
                120=fcc051e0d61320c78cac9fe4ad56a2a2.cab
                121=fd5778f772c39c09c3dd8cd99e7f0543.cab
                122=fe43ba83b8d1e88cc4f4bfeac0850c6c.cab
                123=InstallRegHiveRecoveryDriverAmd64.exe
                124=InstallRegHiveRecoveryDriverX86.exe
                125=Kits Configuration Installer-x86_en-us.msi
                126=Microsoft Compatibility Monitor-x86_en-us.msi
                127=SQLEXPR_x86_ENU.exe
                128=Toolkit Documentation-x86_en-us.msi
                129=User State Migration Tool-x86_en-us.msi
                130=Volume Activation Management Tool-x86_en-us.msi
                131=wasinstaller.exe
                132=WimMountAdkSetupAmd64.exe
                133=WimMountAdkSetupArm.exe
                134=WimMountAdkSetupX86.exe
                135=Windows Assessment Services - Client (AMD64 Architecture Specific, Client SKU)-x86_en-us.msi
                136=Windows Assessment Services - Client (AMD64 Architecture Specific, Server SKU)-x86_en-us.msi
                137=Windows Assessment Services - Client (Client SKU)-x86_en-us.msi
                138=Windows Assessment Services - Client (Server SKU)-x86_en-us.msi
                139=Windows Assessment Services - Client (X86 Architecture Specific, Client SKU)-x86_en-us.msi
                140=Windows Assessment Services-x86_en-us.msi
                141=Windows Assessment Toolkit (AMD64 Architecture Specific)-x86_en-us.msi
                142=Windows Assessment Toolkit (X86 Architecture Specific)-x86_en-us.msi
                143=Windows Assessment Toolkit-x86_en-us.msi
                144=Windows Deployment Customizations-x86_en-us.msi
                145=Windows Deployment Tools-x86_en-us.msi
                146=Windows PE x86 x64 wims-x86_en-us.msi
                147=Windows PE x86 x64-x86_en-us.msi
                148=Windows System Image Manager on amd64-x86_en-us.msi
                149=Windows System Image Manager on x86-x86_en-us.msi
                150=WPT Redistributables-x86_en-us.msi
                151=WPTarm-arm_en-us.msi
                152=WPTx64-x86_en-us.msi
                153=WPTx86-x86_en-us.msi
'@
        }
   
        $PatchesURLs = DATA {
            ConvertFrom-StringData @'
                0=Toolkit Documentation-x86_en-us.msp
                1=Application Compatibility Toolkit-x86_en-us.msp
                2=Application Compatibility Toolkit-x64_en-us.msp
                3=Windows Deployment Tools-x86_en-us.msp
                4=Windows System Image Manager on amd64-x86_en-us.msp
                5=Windows System Image Manager on x86-x86_en-us.msp
                6=Windows PE x86 x64-x86_en-us.msp
                7=User State Migration Tool-x86_en-us.msp
                8=Volume Activation Management Tool-x86_en-us.msp
                9=WPTx86-x86_en-us.msp
                10=WPTx64-x86_en-us.msp
                11=WPT Redistributables-x86_en-us.msp
                12=Windows Assessment Toolkit-x86_en-us.msp
                13=Assessments on Client-x86_en-us.msp
                14=Windows Assessment Services-x86_en-us.msp
                15=Windows Assessment Services - Client (Server SKU)-x86_en-us.msp
                16=Assessments on Server-x86_en-us.msp
                17=Windows Assessment Services - Client (Client SKU)-x86_en-us.msp
'@
        }
  
        "Installers","Patches\$PatchLevel" | ForEach-Object -Process {
            # Create target folders if required as BIT doesn't accept missing folders
            If (-not(Test-Path (Join-Path -Path $TargetFolder -ChildPath $_))) {
                try {
                    New-Item -Path (Join-Path -Path $TargetFolder -ChildPath $_) -ItemType Directory -Force @HT
                } catch {
                    Write-Warning -Message "Failed to create folder $($TargetFolder)/$_"
                    break
                }
            }
        }
        # Get adksetup.exe
        Invoke-WebRequest -Uri "$($MainURL)adksetup.exe" -OutFile  "$($TargetFolder)\adksetup.exe"
   
        # Create a job that will downlad our first file
        $job = Start-BitsTransfer -Suspended -Source "$($MainURL)Installers/$($InstallerURLs['0'])" -Asynchronous -Destination (Join-Path -Path $TargetFolder -ChildPath ("Installers/$($InstallerURLs['0'])")) 
           
        # Downlod installers
        For ($i = 1 ; $i -lt $InstallerURLs.Count ; $i++) {
            $URL = $Destination = $null
            $URL = "$($MainURL)Installers/$($InstallerURLs[$i.ToString()])"
            $Destination = Join-Path -Path (Join-Path -Path $TargetFolder -ChildPath Installers) -ChildPath (([URI]$URL).Segments[-1] -replace '%20'," ")
            # Add-BitsFile http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd819411.aspx
            $newjob = Add-BitsFile -BitsJob $job -Source  $URL -Destination $Destination
            Write-Progress -Activity "Adding file $($newjob.FilesTotal)" -Status "Percent completed: " -PercentComplete (($newjob.FilesTotal)*100/($InstallerURLs.Count))
        }
  
        # Donwload Patches
        For ($i = 0 ; $i -lt $PatchesURLs.Count ; $i++) {
            $URL = $Destination = $null
            $URL = "$($MainURL)Patches/$PatchLevel/$($PatchesURLs[$i.ToString()])"
            $Destination = Join-Path -Path (Join-Path -Path $TargetFolder -ChildPath "Patches/$PatchLevel") -ChildPath (([URI]$URL).Segments[-1] -replace '%20'," ")
            # Add-BitsFile http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd819411.aspx
            $newjob = Add-BitsFile -BitsJob $job -Source  $URL -Destination $Destination
        }
   
        # Begin the download and show us the job
        Resume-BitsTransfer  -BitsJob $job -Asynchronous
   
        # http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/desktop/ee663885%28v=vs.85%29.aspx
        while ($job.JobState -in @('Connecting','Transferring','Queued')) {
            Write-Progress -activity "Downloading ADK files" -Status "Percent completed: " -PercentComplete ($job.BytesTransferred*100/$job.BytesTotal)
        } 
        Switch($job.JobState) {
         "Transferred" {
            Complete-BitsTransfer -BitsJob $job
            break
        }
         "Error" {
            # List the errors.
            $job | Format-List
        } 
        default {
            # Perform corrective action.
        } 
        }
    }
}
End {}
}

PoC: Tatoo the background of your virtual machines

You may know the popular Bginfo from Sysinternals and that even Azure uses this utility to tatoo the background of virtual machines.

I wondered if PowerShell (alone) would make it and avoid the dependency on an external binary.

I started to use Google and finally decided to fork the following code available on github: https://github.com/fabriceleal/Imagify/blob/master/imagify.ps1

I also needed to find the way to set a wallpaper under Windows 7 and later…
I decided to extend this PowerTip: http://powershell.com/cs/blogs/tips/archive/2014/01/10/change-desktop-wallpaper.aspx because the rundll32 tricks doesn’t work.

I created two functions, one to create a new background image either from scratch and based on a colored theme (blue, grey and black) or from the existing wallpaper and the second one to set this image as a wallpaper.

Function New-BGinfo {
    Param(  [Parameter(Mandatory)]
            [string] $Text,

            [Parameter()]
            [string] $OutFile= "$($env:temp)\BGInfo.bmp",

            [Parameter()]
            [ValidateSet("Left","Center")]
            [string]$Align="Center",


            [Parameter()]
            [ValidateSet("Blue","Grey","Black")]
            [string]$Theme="Blue",

            [Parameter()]
            [string]$FontName="Arial",

            [Parameter()]
            [ValidateRange(9,45)]
            [int32]$FontSize = 12,

            [Parameter()]
            [switch]$UseCurrentWallpaperAsSource
    )
Begin {

    Switch ($Theme) {
        Blue {
            $BG = @(58,110,165)
            $FC1 = @(254,253,254)
            $FC2 = @(185,190,188)
            $FS1 = $FontSize+1
            $FS2 = $FontSize-2
            break
        }
        Grey {
            $BG = @(77,77,77)
            $FC1 = $FC2 = @(255,255,255)
            $FS1=$FS2=$FontSize
            break
        }
        Black {
            $BG = @(0,0,0)
            $FC1 = $FC2 = @(255,255,255)
            $FS1=$FS2=$FontSize
        }
    }
    Try {
        [system.reflection.assembly]::loadWithPartialName('system.drawing.imaging') | out-null
        [system.reflection.assembly]::loadWithPartialName('system.windows.forms') | out-null

        # Draw string > alignement
        $sFormat = new-object system.drawing.stringformat

        Switch ($Align) {
            Center {
                $sFormat.Alignment = [system.drawing.StringAlignment]::Center
                $sFormat.LineAlignment = [system.drawing.StringAlignment]::Center
                break
            }
            Left {
                $sFormat.Alignment = [system.drawing.StringAlignment]::Center
                $sFormat.LineAlignment = [system.drawing.StringAlignment]::Near
            }
        }


        if ($UseCurrentWallpaperAsSource) {
            $wpath = (Get-ItemProperty 'HKCU:\Control Panel\Desktop' -Name WallPaper -ErrorAction Stop).WallPaper
            if (Test-Path -Path $wpath -PathType Leaf) {
                $bmp = new-object system.drawing.bitmap -ArgumentList $wpath
                $image = [System.Drawing.Graphics]::FromImage($bmp)
                $SR = $bmp | Select Width,Height
            } else {
                Write-Warning -Message "Failed cannot find the current wallpaper $($wpath)"
                break
            }
        } else {
            $SR = [System.Windows.Forms.Screen]::AllScreens | Where Primary | 
            Select -ExpandProperty Bounds | Select Width,Height

            Write-Verbose -Message "Screen resolution is set to $($SR.Width)x$($SR.Height)" -Verbose

            # Create Bitmap
            $bmp = new-object system.drawing.bitmap($SR.Width,$SR.Height)
            $image = [System.Drawing.Graphics]::FromImage($bmp)
    
            $image.FillRectangle(
                (New-Object Drawing.SolidBrush (
                    [System.Drawing.Color]::FromArgb($BG[0],$BG[1],$BG[2])
                )),
                (new-object system.drawing.rectanglef(0,0,($SR.Width),($SR.Height)))
            )

        }
    } Catch {
        Write-Warning -Message "Failed to $($_.Exception.Message)"
        break
    }
}
Process {

    # Split our string as it can be multiline
    $artext = ($text -split "\r\n")
    
    $i = 1
    Try {
        for ($i ; $i -le $artext.Count ; $i++) {
            if ($i -eq 1) {
                $font1 = New-Object System.Drawing.Font($FontName,$FS1,[System.Drawing.FontStyle]::Bold)
                $Brush1 = New-Object Drawing.SolidBrush (
                    [System.Drawing.Color]::FromArgb($FC1[0],$FC1[1],$FC1[2])
                )
                $sz1 = [system.windows.forms.textrenderer]::MeasureText($artext[$i-1], $font1)
                $rect1 = New-Object System.Drawing.RectangleF (0,($sz1.Height),$SR.Width,$SR.Height)
                $image.DrawString($artext[$i-1], $font1, $brush1, $rect1, $sFormat) 
            } else {
                $font2 = New-Object System.Drawing.Font($FontName,$FS2,[System.Drawing.FontStyle]::Bold)
                $Brush2 = New-Object Drawing.SolidBrush (
                    [System.Drawing.Color]::FromArgb($FC2[0],$FC2[1],$FC2[2])
                )
                $sz2 = [system.windows.forms.textrenderer]::MeasureText($artext[$i-1], $font2)
                $rect2 = New-Object System.Drawing.RectangleF (0,($i*$FontSize*2 + $sz2.Height),$SR.Width,$SR.Height)
                $image.DrawString($artext[$i-1], $font2, $brush2, $rect2, $sFormat)
            }
        }
    } Catch {
        Write-Warning -Message "Failed to $($_.Exception.Message)"
        break
    }
}
End {   
    Try { 
        # Close Graphics
        $image.Dispose();

        # Save and close Bitmap
        $bmp.Save($OutFile, [system.drawing.imaging.imageformat]::Bmp);
        $bmp.Dispose();

        # Output our file
        Get-Item -Path $OutFile
    } Catch {
        Write-Warning -Message "Failed to $($_.Exception.Message)"
        break
    }
}

} # endof function

Function Set-Wallpaper {
    Param(
        [Parameter(Mandatory=$true)]
        $Path,
        
        [ValidateSet('Center','Stretch','Fill','Tile','Fit')]
        $Style = 'Stretch'
    )
    Try {
        if (-not ([System.Management.Automation.PSTypeName]'Wallpaper.Setter').Type) {
            Add-Type -TypeDefinition @"
            using System;
            using System.Runtime.InteropServices;
            using Microsoft.Win32;
            namespace Wallpaper {
                public enum Style : int {
                Center, Stretch, Fill, Fit, Tile
                }
                public class Setter {
                    public const int SetDesktopWallpaper = 20;
                    public const int UpdateIniFile = 0x01;
                    public const int SendWinIniChange = 0x02;
                    [DllImport("user32.dll", SetLastError = true, CharSet = CharSet.Auto)]
                    private static extern int SystemParametersInfo (int uAction, int uParam, string lpvParam, int fuWinIni);
                    public static void SetWallpaper ( string path, Wallpaper.Style style ) {
                        SystemParametersInfo( SetDesktopWallpaper, 0, path, UpdateIniFile | SendWinIniChange );
                        RegistryKey key = Registry.CurrentUser.OpenSubKey("Control Panel\\Desktop", true);
                        switch( style ) {
                            case Style.Tile :
                                key.SetValue(@"WallpaperStyle", "0") ; 
                                key.SetValue(@"TileWallpaper", "1") ; 
                                break;
                            case Style.Center :
                                key.SetValue(@"WallpaperStyle", "0") ; 
                                key.SetValue(@"TileWallpaper", "0") ; 
                                break;
                            case Style.Stretch :
                                key.SetValue(@"WallpaperStyle", "2") ; 
                                key.SetValue(@"TileWallpaper", "0") ;
                                break;
                            case Style.Fill :
                                key.SetValue(@"WallpaperStyle", "10") ; 
                                key.SetValue(@"TileWallpaper", "0") ; 
                                break;
                            case Style.Fit :
                                key.SetValue(@"WallpaperStyle", "6") ; 
                                key.SetValue(@"TileWallpaper", "0") ; 
                                break;
}
                        key.Close();
                    }
                }
            }
"@ -ErrorAction Stop 
            } else {
                Write-Verbose -Message "Type already loaded" -Verbose
            }
        # } Catch TYPE_ALREADY_EXISTS
        } Catch {
            Write-Warning -Message "Failed because $($_.Exception.Message)"
        }
    
    [Wallpaper.Setter]::SetWallpaper( $Path, $Style )
}

Let’s see these two functions in action.

First define some multiline text to be written in the image.

$os = Get-CimInstance Win32_OperatingSystem
($o = [pscustomobject]@{
    HostName =  $env:COMPUTERNAME
    UserName = '{0}\{1}' -f  $env:USERDOMAIN,$env:USERNAME
    'Operating System' = '{0} Service Pack {1} (build {2})' -f  $os.Caption,
    $os.ServicePackMajorVersion,$os.BuildNumber
}) | ft -AutoSize
$BootTime = (New-TimeSpan -Start $os.LastBootUpTime -End (Get-Date)).ToString()

# $t is the multiline text defined as here-string
$t = @"
$($o.HostName)
Logged on user: $($o.UserName)
$($o.'Operating System')
Uptime: $BootTime
"@
  • Exemple 1: ala Backinfo
  • $WallPaper = New-BGinfo -text $t
    Set-Wallpaper -Path $WallPaper.FullName -Style Center
    

  • Exemple 2: ala Bginfo using the current wallpaper
  • $BGHT = @{
     Text  = $t ;
     Theme = "Black" ;
     FontName = "Verdana" ;
     UseCurrentWallpaperAsSource = $true ;
    }
    $WallPaper = New-BGinfo @BGHT
    Set-Wallpaper -Path $WallPaper.FullName -Style Fill
    
    # Restore the default VM wallpaper
    Set-Wallpaper -Path "C:\Windows\Web\Wallpaper\Windows\img0.jpg" -Style Fill
    

This proof of concept based on just a few hundred lines of PowerShell proves that the dependency on Bginfo could be avoided…

Quick tips about dism

Whenever I’m working on Windows 7 and Windows 2008 R2 server, I cannot leverage the new DISM PowerShell module built-in Windows 8.x and 2012 server.

The built-in command dism.exe can display packages as a list or a table.

When I’m looking for the state of a particular package, I use the Select-String cmdlet to parse the default dism output formatted as a list.
The -Context parameter allows to display the next 4 lines after it finds the matching pattern:

dism /online /get-packages | 
Select-String -Pattern "2965788" -Context 0,4


NB: sls is the alias of Select-String as of PowerShell 3.0

Yesterday, I wanted to get the list of packages sorted by their installation time.
The default format of dism.exe by list doesn’t help.
The first step was to skip the first lines of the dism output formatted in a table.
The second step consists in transforming the dism table output into objects with the ConvertFrom-Csv cmdlet.
These two steps don’t allow to sort by “Install Time” as the ‘Install Time’ is a string and not a datetime object.
The last step kills two birds with one stone. It removes the last line “The operation completed successfully” of dism.exe and converts the ‘Install Time’ values into datetime objects.

dism /online /get-packages /format:table | 
Select-Object -Skip 12 | 
ConvertFrom-Csv -Header "PackageName","State","Release Type","Install Time" -Delimiter "|" | 
foreach {
 if ($_.PackageName -notmatch "The operation completed successfully.") {
  [PSCustomObject]@{
   PackageName = $_.PackageName ;
   State = $_.State ;
   Type = $_.'Release Type' ;
   'Install Time' = (Get-Date -Date $_.'Install Time') ;
  }
 }
} | 
Sort 'Install Time'

Clear eventlog

I’ve been testing the new Sysmon tool from Sysinternals written by Mark Russinovich and Thomas Garnier I’ve already mentioned in this post.

It has been recently updated to version 1.01.
Since I updated from version 1.0 to 1.01, events written by the previous driver aren’t readable anymore using the “general view” of eventvwr.exe:

Fortunately, the xml data can still be parsed :-)

Anyway, I wanted to clear the log after I upgraded.
The built-in Clear-EventLog doesn’t help in this case :-(

The built-in Get-WinEvent cmdlet returns a System.Diagnostics.Eventing.Reader.EventLogConfiguration .Net object that hasn’t any method to clear the content of the log.

Get-WinEvent -ListLog * | 
Where LogName -match "sysmon" | Get-Member -Force

The System.Diagnostics.Eventing.Reader.EventLogSession .Net class has however a method that can clear logs:

The first method to clear the log is by just giving a logName as parameter

(New-Object System.Diagnostics.Eventing.Reader.EventLogSession).
ClearLog("Microsoft-Windows-Sysmon/Operational")

The second method to clear the log is by passing a logName and a backupath

(New-Object System.Diagnostics.Eventing.Reader.EventLogSession).
ClearLog(
 "Microsoft-Windows-Sysmon/Operational",
 "C:\windows\temp\sysmon.evtx"
)

Both methods generate a 104 event ID in the System log.

Get-WinEvent -FilterHashtable @{ LogName = 'System' ; Id = 104} -MaxEvents 2 | 
Sort TimeCreated | Foreach {
 ([xml]($_.ToXml())).Event.UserData.LogFileCleared
}


With event 104 we can see what account cleared what log and whether it’s been saved to any BackupPath.

Scan for updates from different sources and compare results

Context: I’m working with PowerShell version 2.0 on a Windows 2008 R2 server connected to Internet, managed by an internal WSUS.

Goal: I want to perform two scans to get results from WSUS and Microsoft Update to compare them.
I just want to see Important updates and not optional updates

Reminder :

  • I’ve already shown how to quickly perform a scan and hide some updates on PowerShell Magazine, here
  • I’ve also already shown on Windows 8.x how to get updates from the Windows Store, here

Foreword: To be able to get updates from Microsoft Update, your Windows Update Agent (WUA) must ‘opt-in’.
This can be achieved with the following code:

# Opt-in to MU            
$UpdateSvc = New-Object -ComObject Microsoft.Update.ServiceManager            
$UpdateSvc.AddService2("7971f918-a847-4430-9279-4a52d1efe18d",7,"")            
$UpdateSvc.QueryServiceRegistration("7971f918-a847-4430-9279-4a52d1efe18d") | fl *            
$UpdateSvc.Services | Where { $_.Name -eq "Microsoft Update"}

Step 1: Modify the Get-WindowsUpdate function I presented on PowerShell Magazine by adding a FromMU parameter

Function Get-WindowsUpdate {
 
    [Cmdletbinding()]
    Param(
        [Parameter()]
        [system.Boolean]$FromMU=$false
    )
 
    Process {
        try {
            Write-Verbose "Getting Windows Update"
            $Session = New-Object -ComObject Microsoft.Update.Session           
            $Searcher = $Session.CreateUpdateSearcher() 
            
            if($fromMU) {
                $Searcher.ServiceID = '7971f918-a847-4430-9279-4a52d1efe18d'
                $Searcher.SearchScope =  1 # MachineOnly
                $Searcher.ServerSelection = 3 # Third Party                  
            }
            $Criteria = "IsInstalled=0 and DeploymentAction='Installation' or IsPresent=1 and DeploymentAction='Uninstallation' or IsInstalled=1 and DeploymentAction='Installation' and RebootRequired=1 or IsInstalled=0 and DeploymentAction='Uninstallation' and RebootRequired=1"           
            $SearchResult = $Searcher.Search($Criteria)          
            $SearchResult.Updates
        } catch {
            Write-Warning -Message "Failed to query Windows Update because $($_.Exception.Message)"
        }
    }
}

Only 3 properties of the Searcher object have been defined inside the if/else block.
These properties can also be discovered by reading the WindowsUpdate.log.

The modified function can be tested like this:

Get-WindowsUpdate | Out-GridView
Get-WindowsUpdate -FromMU:$true | Out-GridView

Problem: The MU scan mixes both Important and optional updates although the WUA is configured like this:
(do not give me recommended updates the same way I receive important updates)

Notice also that there’s no property from the previous Out-GridView window that would help distinguish between these “kinds” of updates.
I find also ambiguous the difference between “Optional” updates and “Recommended” updates.
To avoid confusion, let’s treat “optional” updates as updates that you can see in the “Optional” view of the Windows Update GUI.

Step 2: Find out what updates are optional vs. important

$UpdatesFromMU = Get-WindowsUpdate -FromMU:$true 
$Results = $UpdatesFromMU | ForEach-Object {
    $_ | Add-Member -MemberType ScriptProperty -Name isImportant -Value ({
        if (-not($this.BrowseOnly) -and $this.AutoSelectOnWebSites) {
            $true
        } else { 
            $false
        }
    }) -Force -PassThru |
    Add-member -MemberType ScriptProperty -Name isOptional -Value ({
        -not($this.isImportant)
    }) -Force -PassThru
}

As you can see, I’ve chosen to add script properties on the fly.

Let’s check if this corresponds to an interactive scan with the GUI

$Results | Where { $_.isImportant } | Measure
$Results | Where { $_.isOptional }  |  Measure



There’s one additional optional update that is included in the scan made with PowerShell.
In my case, it’s Microsoft .NET Framework 4 for Windows Server 2008 R2 x64-based Systems (KB982671)

Step 3: Get more info about updates

This step is more experimental. As the built-in description property of the update isn’t enough descriptive (it doesn’t tell you what it fixes), I’ll use the MoreInfoUrls property and extract the title from the raw html returned by an http request.
I don’t have the handy new Invoke-WebRequest cmdlet provided by PowerShell version 3.0, so I’ll use the old method.

$Results | Where { $_.isImportant } | 
ForEach-Object { 
    $update = $_
    $TitleLine = $pageTitle = $null
    try {
        $TitleLine = (new-object Net.Webclient).DownloadString([system.Uri]$($_.MoreInfoUrls )) -split '\<' | 
        Select-string -Pattern "\:pagetitle\=" -ErrorAction Stop | Select -Expand Line
        if ($TitleLine) {
            $pageTitle = @(([regex]'.*\="(?<Title>.*)"\s/\>').Matches(($TitleLine).ToString())) | 
            Select -Last 1 -Expand Groups | 
            Select -Last 1 -Expand Value
            $_ | Add-Member -MemberType NoteProperty -Name "Page Title" -Value $pageTitle -Force -PassThru -ErrorAction Stop
        }
    } catch {
        Write-Warning -Message "Failed for $($update.Title) because $($_.Exception.Message)"
        $update | Add-Member -MemberType NoteProperty -Name "Page Title" -Value $($update.Description) -Force -PassThru
    }        
} | 
Select Title,@{
    l='Category';e={$_.Categories | Where { -not($_.Parent) } | Select -Expand Name}
},'Page Title' | 
Out-GridView

Step 4: scan for Updates from WSUS and Microsoft Update and compare results

I can now export results from the scan performed against Microsoft Update by just replacing the above Out-GridView cmdlet by the following code:

Export-Csv -Path "$($home)\Documents\scan.results.$((Get-date).toString('yyyy-MM-dd-HHmm')).MU.csv"

To get results from WSUS, I do:

#
# scan from WSUS
#
$UpdatesFromWSUS = Get-WindowsUpdate
$Results = $UpdatesFromWSUS | ForEach-Object {
    $_ | Add-Member -MemberType ScriptProperty -Name isImportant -Value ({
        if (-not($this.BrowseOnly) -and $this.AutoSelectOnWebSites) {
            $true
        } else { 
            $false
        }
    }) -Force -PassThru |
    Add-member -MemberType ScriptProperty -Name isOptional -Value ({
        -not($this.isImportant)
    }) -Force -PassThru
}
$Results | Where { $_.isImportant } | Measure
$Results | Where { $_.isOptional }  |  Measure
# > no need to distinguish between the 2 kinds :-)

$Results | 
ForEach-Object { 
    $update = $_
    $TitleLine = $pageTitle = $null
    try {
        $TitleLine = (new-object Net.Webclient).DownloadString([system.Uri]$($_.MoreInfoUrls )) -split '\<' | 
        Select-string -Pattern "\:pagetitle\=" -ErrorAction Stop | Select -Expand Line
        if ($TitleLine) {
            $pageTitle = @(([regex]'.*\="(?<Title>.*)"\s/\>').Matches(($TitleLine).ToString())) | 
            Select -Last 1 -Expand Groups | 
            Select -Last 1 -Expand Value
            $_ | Add-Member -MemberType NoteProperty -Name "Page Title" -Value $pageTitle -Force -PassThru -ErrorAction Stop
        }
    } catch {
        Write-Warning -Message "Failed for $($update.Title) because $($_.Exception.Message)"
        $update | Add-Member -MemberType NoteProperty -Name "Page Title" -Value $($update.Description) -Force -PassThru
    }        
} | 
Select Title,@{
    l='Category';e={$_.Categories | Where { -not($_.Parent) } | Select -Expand Name}
},'Page Title' | 
Export-Csv -Path "$($home)\Documents\scan.results.$((Get-date).toString('yyyy-MM-dd-HHmm')).WSUS.csv"

To compare results, I do:

Compare-Object -Property Title -IncludeEqual -ReferenceObject (
    Import-CSV (
        Get-ChildItem "$($home)\Documents\scan.results.*.MU.csv" | 
        Sort LastWriteTime | Select -Last 1
    )
) -DifferenceObject (
    Import-CSV (
        Get-ChildItem "$($home)\Documents\scan.results.*.WSUS.csv" | 
        Sort LastWriteTime | Select -Last 1
    )
) 

Enjoy :-D