Good News and Bad!

Bad news is that as of the 2011-12-31 I finished working for my Employer in order to move back to my home country, so I no longer have direct access to (and responsibility for) VMWare (and all the other really cool stuff we had, infini-band, HPC etc.) To top it off I was told before I left they intended to implement vblock (I suspect they just wanted to make me jealous ;) )

Good news is that from the 2012-01-09 I am starting my new job which will be mainly SCCM to start but moving into Citrix as well. So you will likely see no more VMWare posts, however I intend to make it up to you all by posting lots more

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Capture CDP packets and populate WMI for SCCM

This little gem I wrote will listen to all interfaces on a computer for CDP packets. Once it has looped all the interfaces any packets it has captured are processed and added to WMI.

Using the attached SMS_DEF.mof we can extract that information and place it in SCCM. Anyone who knows what CDP is will see the benefit immediately. For the rest; CDP (Cisco Discovery Protocol), Cisco devices send out CDP packets every 60seconds each packet contains information about the port it was sent from and the sender. In a nutshell if my computer receives a packet then I can tell which switch I am connected to, what port on that switch and a few other bits and bobs about the switch. e.g. In a test environment I have a Cisco switch which connects to a Cisco IP phone which then connects to my computer, when exe runs I get two entries in WMI, one for the phone and one for the Switch.

The use case is that helpdesk  may not know where a user is physically or where they are connected to the network and the user may be experiencing network issues, this would allow a helpdesk tech to locate the switchport  the user is connected to and pass that info to the network team for troubleshooting saving both parties the hassle of tracing cables and also allowing reporting on where a user is plugging in over a period of time.

There is still a bit to be done for this but it does generally work.

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Dump Variables during OSD

A while back I had a support case open with MS about some scripting in winPE. In order to debug the problem we wanted to see what variables were declared & what their values were. The support tech came up with the attachted script, I never got round to adding it to my scripts folder, so I ran it by opening a command shell in winPE (F8) then “net use Z: \\\c$\users\\desktop\”. Then I ran the script with “cscript.exe SCCMVarDump.vbs” a file is created in the same location as the script.

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Dell & HP Warranty Info in SCCM

Updated: 2011-08-18

This is the next evolution in the warranty info fight, Dell keep changing their site which is rather frustrating. I have re-written the Warranty Info Scripts in powershell as in my opinion the code is a lot cleaner and more manageable, I’ve tweaked the MOF edit required to read this.

One major change to the script is that I have added support for HP systems, now I must stress I only have one or two of these, both are out of warranty and only had base warranties so something may have been missed / may not work as expected. You can either fix it and let me know the changes you make or let me know, via the contact page, the tag of one of your systems and I will look at it when I get a chance.

If you use any other version of the script from my site you will need to update sms.mof as the reports have changed.

I am quite shameless so if you find this useful feel free to click on donate and well, donate. :D

What info do you get?

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OSD – Customising deployment depending on location

It’s been a while since I posted anything, but I’ve been really busy at home and in work.

Although I have beening using OSD for a while it hasn’t been completely automated, things like timezone, keyboard locale etc still need to be changed by an administrator after a rebuild. Now we have sites in America, UK, Europe and Japan, so I need to account for them in my task sequence. I will admit here that I had a bit of trouble with getting the script to work so I did get some help from MS (they added 2 lines of code to the script and 1 task sequence event).

There are 2 parts to this, 1st is the vbscript to detect and set the location and then some task sequence events to act on the variables we set.

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