Friday 17 June 2011

Removing the time value from the date/time column in a view

I've finally found time to get back onto the TechNet forums and just happened to land on this post with a brilliant answer from Aaron Croasmun:

I had been meaning to find this out for myself for a while now as it's annoying seeing dd/mm/yy 00:00:00 in my views in the asset management solution I did.

<mux:Column Name="$TimeAdded$" DisplayMemberBinding="{Binding Path=$TimeAdded$}" Width="100" DisplayName="TimeAdded.View.DisplayName" Property="$TimeAdded$" DataType="s:DateTime" />

Is changed to:

<mux:Column Name="$TimeAdded$" DisplayMemberBinding="{Binding Path=$TimeAdded$, StringFormat=d}" Width="100" DisplayName="TimeAdded.View.DisplayName" Property="$TimeAdded$" DataType="s:DateTime" />

Notice the "DisplayMemberBinding" has the StringFormat=d appended

So before it looked like this:

And then ends up like this after the MP edit:

Configuration Manager 2012 - Let's start!

Since I'm busy building a test lab, I thought I'd take the opportunity to blog some of the setup and findings as I go along.

I'm starting with ConfigMgr 2012 in the lab and will be building it out with SCSM, SCOM, SCVMM etc as I go along.

For an idea of what's new in SCCM 2012, take a look here:

I'm not going to go into building the DC, except to say that I've created some standard service accounts for use with SCCM.

These are:
SCCMAdmin - SCCM Setup & Admin Account
SCCMNA - Network Access Account
SCCMPush - Push Install Account

Before installing in the lab environment, I used an internet connected machine to download the files that setup tries to download at run time.

In ConfigMgr 2007, these were downloaded using setup.exe /download <pathtostorefiles>

In ConfigMgr 2012, this is now a separate file called SetupDL.exe.  Running this will prompt for where to store the files.

Last time I ran it (07/06/2011) it gave me a total of 192Mb in 14 files.

While you've got internet access, now would be a good time to also grab these pre-reqs:

Now that I've got these, it's time to setup the server and install SQL.

Setting up a 2008 R2 server with pre-reqs

SCCM 2012 requires the following components:

  • Remote Differential Compression
  • Internet Information Services (IIS) - 7.5 & 6 Compatability
  • BITS
  • WebDAV
  • Configure requestFiltering on distribution points
  • .NET 3.5 & 4

Use PowerShell to setup .Net 3.5:
import-module servermanager
add-windowsfeature NET-Framework

Install .Net 4.0
<Path to file>\dotNetFx40_Full_x86_x64.exe /passive /norestart

The server features/roles can be easily installed via PowerShell:

add-windowsfeature FS-FileServer,Web-Static-Content,Web-Default-Doc,Web-Dir-Browsing,Web-Http-Errors,Web-Http-Redirect,Web-Asp-Net,Web-Net-Ext,Web-ISAPI-Ext,Web-ISAPI-Filter,Web-Http-Logging,Web-Log-Libraries,Web-Request-Monitor,Web-Http-Tracing,Web-Windows-Auth,Web-Filtering,Web-Stat-Compression,Web-Dyn-Compression,Web-Mgmt-Console,Web-Metabase,Web-WMI,BITS-Compact-Server,BITS-IIS-Ext,RDC,RSAT-Web-Server,RSAT-Bits-Server
Reboot Server – a reboot is required before installing SQL
SQL 2008 SP1 CU10 Setup
To make things easier, I've written a quick batch file to automate the setup of SQL 2008, including SP1 and Cumulative Update 10 AND all the required SQL components (Reporting, Integration Services etc)
To make this work, extract the SP1 files to a folder called SQL_Server_2008_SP1 at the same root level as the SQL install files.
Also, extract the CU10 files to a folder called SP1_CU10 at the same level.
Store the batch file at the same root folder level, this should give you a file layout like this:
The batch file basically does the following:
Add two reg entries to stop the OS moaning that SQL 2008 isn't compatible without SP1:
reg add "HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\AppCompatFlags" /v {45da5a8b-67b5-4896-86b7-a2e838aee035} /t REG_DWORD /d 4 /f
reg add "HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\AppCompatFlags" /v {f2d3ae3a-bfcc-45e2-bf63-178d1db34294} /t REG_DWORD /d 4 /f
Run the SP1 SQL Support files:
start /wait %~dp0SP1_CU10\x64\setup\1033\sqlsupport.msi /QB
Then install SQL 2008, slipstreamed with SP1 & CU10 and all required roles:
N.B. I've used the %dp0 variable in the batch file so it doesn't matter where the source files or batch file is run from, as long as the batch file is run from the folder with the SQL files.
The batch file can be found here (I've renamed to txt so please rename back to .bat or .cmd)
To save the posts getting too long, I'll pop the SCCM 2012 install into a part 2 post.

Thursday 16 June 2011

System Center Orchestrator - CEP Kickoff

I've just finished the CEP Kickoff meeting for System Center Orchestrator (formally Opalis) and I can't wait for the downloads of the Beta to become available tomorrow on the connect site.

Couple of useful bits of information already, the first being the requirement for SQL 2008 R2, time to get upgrading/installing as my test labs currently only use 2008 due to the requirements for ConfigMgr 2012.

The other bit of useful information is the IP's that are currently being worked on ready for release so that they're ready to go.

Nice to see more work being done on the AD 2008/R2 IP, not to sure on the FTP one though, I can't remember the last time I FTP'd something ;)

Monday 6 June 2011

Windows 8 - First UI look

Microsoft have released a small taste of Windows 8 today.

For the MS Press announcement, take a look here:

I must say the tile approach looks interesting, but I am a WP7 fan.  However, this could be interesting when it comes to deploying and customising the OS.....

It would be nice for a change to get some information very early on about the manageability side of Windows 8 rather than just all UX/UI news, fingers crossed.

Saturday 4 June 2011

Scheduling SCOM Maintenance Mode - Centrally, not via a scheduled task!

I've just noticed over on the Operations Manager blog that they've released the OpsMgr 2007 R2 Admin Resource Kit.

The tool that caught my eye was the Scheduled Maintenance Mode Tool, giving the ability to schedule and manage maintenance mode in the management group.

From the blog post:

The tool provides the following features:
  • Ability to schedule any type of object to be placed into maintenance mode in the form of a Job
  • Group support including nested groups
  • Automatically places Health Service Watcher in maintenance with computer
  • Blocks RMS from being placed in maintenance
  • Support for Run Once, daily, weekly, and monthly schedules (including complex scenarios like "second Tuesday of the month")
  • Ability to cancel a maintenance Job where everything will be removed from maintenance automatically
  • History Report
I can't wait to get this tested, the biggest points for me are:
  1. Being able to pop servers into and out of maint mode without scripting or setting up individual tasks, i.e. Being able to control Maint Mode from a central point
  2. Having all the data in the SCOM DB, allowing for reporting and backup/DR
Download can be found here:
After taking a quick look at the included guide, it's got some errors in it :(
After you've installed the ResKit, you'll find the files in the default location of:
C:\Program Files (x86)\System Center\SystemCenter Operations Manager 2007 R2 Admin Reskit

In the "Getting Started" part of the guide, it says:
  • 2. Import the Management Pack (ScheduleMaintenanceMode.Library.xml)
This should be...
  • 2. Import the Management Pack (

In the "Setting up the Management Pack" part of the guide, it says:
  • On the RMS, copy the following files to the install path (in most cases C:\Program Files\System Center Operations Manager 2007)
  • o EnableMmodeWriteActionModule.dll
  • o Interop.MOMSCRIPTAPILib.dll
This should be...
  • On the RMS, copy the following files to the install path (in most cases C:\Program Files\System Center Operations Manager 2007)
  • o EnableMmodeWriteActionModule.dll

In the "Setting up the Console" part of the guide, it says:

From the correct platform (x64 or x86) file, unzip and copy SchedulingAlertSuppression.exe to a directory on the computer you wish to run the console on. 

Double-click SchedulingAlertSuppression.exe
This should be...
Nothing to unzip, copy ScheduleMaintenanceMode.exe to a directory on the computer you wish to run the console on.
I haven't been any further in the documentation yet as I've not presently got access to an RMS, however these are minor errors in the document, just be aware that names etc may have changed between writing the guide and release.
I am however looking forward to seeing the console views and reports etc.


Thursday 2 June 2011

SCOM 2012 Beta Community Evaluation Program (CEP) now open

At TechEd 2011 the Operations Manager 2012 CEP was announced.

Starting around the time of the public beta the CEP will start, providing an organized way of bringing subject matter experts (SMEs) from the product teams, the community (like MVPs and experienced users) and those interested in taking a deep look at the v.Next software for evaluation and preparation for deployment purposes.

At a guess, we can expect to see a beta around Mid-July due to the response I got when applying to the CEP:

Operations Manager 2012 Community Evaluation Program Application

Thank you for your interest in the Operations Manager 2012 CEP! After review of your application, Microsoft will inform you of your acceptance to the program by sending an invitation email to your Windows Live ID email account from Microsoft Connect. You will be informed by mid-July regarding status of your application.

Click here to Apply

For an overview of the Operations Manager 2012 CEP, take a look at the OM12 CEP overview datasheet.

More information can be found here:

Hotfix for Service Manager 2010 SP1 CU1 Available

A hotfix for Cumulative Update 1 for System Center Service Manager 2010 SP1 has been released.

If after installing SP1 CU1 you notice the following errors then this hotfix should resolve it.

Event ID 33333 is logged in the "Operations Manager" event log on the management server:
Log Name: Operations Manager
Source: DataAccessLayer
Event ID: 33333
Task Category: None
Level: Warning
Keywords: Classic
User: N/A
Data Access Layer rejected retry on SqlError:
Request: EntityChangeLogSnapshot -- (ManagedTypeId=a604b942-4c7b-2fb2-28dc-61dc6f465c68), (BeginTransactionId=68184), (EndTransactionId=68226), (RETURN_VALUE=1)
Class: 15
Number: 156
Message: Incorrect syntax near the keyword 'INNER'.

Log Name: Operations Manager
Source: DataAccessLayer
Event ID: 33333
Task Category: None
Level: Warning
Keywords: Classic
User: N/A
Data Access Layer rejected retry on SqlError:
Request: EntityChangeLogSnapshot -- (ManagedTypeId=a604b942-4c7b-2fb2-28dc-61dc6f465c68), (BeginTransactionId=68184), (EndTransactionId=68226), (RETURN_VALUE=1)
Class: 15
Number: 102
Message: Incorrect syntax near ','.

Note: The GUIDs and transaction IDs vary, depending on the environment. However, the text in the description is the same

You may also notice that you receive duplicated notifications or workflows that are triggered two times for the same object.

For more information, check the KB article here: