Friday, 28 November 2014

Free Disk Space Collection SCCM 2012

We have been having several users with older PC's complaining of low disk space errors.  These are normally shared Dell PC's with 80GB HDD's.  We have lots of surgerys where tens of nurses will log on and subsequently create a local profile.  As we have cached mode enabled for Outlook (don't ask) this creates massive .OST files in every profile.

I wanted SCCM to keep track of these machines and subsequently run a batch file that clears all the .OST files off the machine.

I wanted a collection that would list all machines with less than 1GB free disk space.  I created the collection courtesy of but found it was empty no matter what.

I then eventually came across this post instructing that by default the disk space isn't automatically collected by the hardware inventory cycle.

Enable this and just wait for the Harware Inventory Cycle to kick in and the disk space info will become available.

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Hirens Boot Disk 15.2 Host

I am now hosting Hirens Boot Disk 15.2 which you can download from here:

Monday, 27 October 2014

Changing Themes on a locked down machine

A user recently contacted me as she had inadvertantly activated "High Contrast" so her screen was black with purple task bars.  After having a bit of fun with her explaining this was Microsofts Halloween Theme that kicks in every year during Halloween week I thought I should come clean.

As her machine was locked down with group policy I couldn't revert back to the standard theme using the normal methods so I came across this useful little script thanks to user "Misfortune" on the Windows 7 Forums

If you open up an admin command prompt and run this you should be able to revert it back.  You can replace "Classic.Theme" with other options if you look in the file path you should be able to see the other themes...

rundll32.exe %SystemRoot%\system32\shell32.dll,Control_RunDLL %SystemRoot%\system32\desk.cpl desk,@Themes /Action:OpenTheme /file:"C:\Windows\Resources\Ease of Access Themes\classic.theme" 

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Removing Trusteer Rapport

After uninstalling Rapport, some folders will remain, storing your Rapport settings (for future installation) and Rapport logs (for technical support analysis, if needed). These files and folders are completely inactive and may contain information useful for future installation or diagnosis of problems with Rapport.
Should you choose to delete these folders, or if you have trouble uninstalling Rapport and would like to manually remove all folders, please follow the instructions provided below. 
1) Go to Start menu and Choose Run (or Press the Windows key and the 'R' key together)
2) Type "C:\Program files" (or "c:\program files (x86)" for 64-bit machines) and click "Ok".
image of Run Command window
3) Find a folder named “Trusteer”, right click it with the mouse, and choose “Delete”. Make sure the folder was removed.
image of program files folder with Trusteer folder
4) Open the Run command as described in step 1
5) Type "%userprofile%\appdata\local" and click "Ok".
   image of Run Command window
6) Find a folder named “Trusteer”, right click it with the mouse, and choose “Delete”. Make sure the folder was removed.
* If the path results in an error, please use the following path instead: %appdata%
7) Open the run command again and this time type "%programdata%" and click "Ok".
image of Run Command window
- If you cannot locate the folder, it might be hidden because of default settings. 
To change the folder’s settings: 
- Go to the Start menu, 
- Click on Control Panel, 
- Click on Folder Options, 
- Click on the View tab, 
- Under “Hidden files and folders”, choose “Show hidden files, folders, and drives” and click OK. 
8) Find a folder named “Trusteer”, right click it with the mouse, and choose “Delete”. Make sure the folder was removed.
9) Open the run command and this time type: c:\windows\system32\drivers. Click Ok.
10) Locate the following files and remove them (right click it with the mouse, and choose “Delete”):
* RapportKELL.sys (would be named RapportKE64.sys in 64-bit operating systems)
* RapportHades64.sys (Windows 8 only)
11) To ensure all Trusteer files were removed, open C drive and search for “Trusteer” in the search bar on the top right-hand side of the window. 
If any files related to Trusteer are found, delete them. 

Monday, 22 September 2014

A change of career...

I've recently embarked on a new journey and I'm retraining as a counsellor.  Please drop by to see my other Blog Counsellor Chris and see what I'm up to.

Friday, 12 September 2014

Windows 9 Technical Preview Leak

With thanks to WinSupersite

"Two German technology blogs have leaked screenshots of the upcoming Windows 9 Technical Preview, which is billed as build 9834. The shots depict the new Start menu, floating Modern app windows, a notification center, multiple desktop workspaces, a flat new design for the desktop, and many other changes that we've long expected."

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

SCCM Report for all machines with IE9

If you know the steps to create a report then the SQL query you could use would be somthing like:

SELECT DISTINCT a.Name0 AS [Machine Name],
c.FileVersion AS [IE Version],
FROM v_GS_SoftwareFile c INNER JOIN
v_GS_SYSTEM a ON c.ResourceID = a.ResourceID INNER JOIN
v_FullCollectionMembership b ON a.ResourceID = b.ResourceID
WHERE     (c.FileName = 'iexplore.exe') AND (c.FileVersion like '9.%')
ORDER BY a.Name0

Please note this has a little bug where it will report multiple instances of the same machine due to the fact that SCCM will have polled every version of IE9 (each incremntal update etc)

It would be better to export this data in to Excel and then delete the duplicates in the name column...

Monday, 19 May 2014

ifM63x64.sys file missing or corrupt - SCCM OSD (X1 Carbon)

Building a new Lenovo X1 Carbon with the new integrated LAN adapter (no more guessing which USB port to use!) via SCCM 2007 and I came across this little blinder.

After the first reboot to OS I was presented with this error screen:

I spotted that is was driver in my driver pack (taken from Lenovo's SCCM pack) for the  Intel Ethernet FCoE Virtual Storport Miniport Driver.

I located the driver in my driver pack and removed it - left he check box UNTICKED to update the distribution point and then manually when and updated it after myself. 

Once I was happy that the source had incremented by one version I kicked off the build again.

Sure enough it sailed through and we are all happy....


Thursday, 1 May 2014

Your account has been disabled. Please see your system administrator


A non-domain joined virtual machine (HyperV) that as just been sysprepped.  SCCM Capture has completed, machine has rebooted but you get presented with Username and password field instead of Windows config options. 

You try to log on with local admin account and get the error "Your account has been disabled.  Please see your system administrator".

  • You've been using SCCM to build machines
  • You didn't activate the admin account

  • You really can't be arsed to go back to the task sequence and make the change then spend 1hr rebuilding the machine
  • You have some form of access to WinPE either via PXE (F12) or USB/CD boot image
  • Troubleshooting is ENABLED in your BootPE to allow for F8 to envoke a cmd prompt.

Now this isn't going to work for everyone but this is a method I've used previously when I've done something dumb like not enabling the local admin account!

Bare in mind this is for when there are NO ACCOUNTS AVAILABLE !  You may have seen this method elsewhere on the net when they then tell you to log in as an administrator....  Really....  When I've just Googled "I've been dumb and forgotten to activate my admin account"...  You're telling me to fix it by logging on as administrator.... REALLY???

Here goes.
  • Boot your machine into WinPE via F12 PXE or via removable media boot disk
  • Hit F8 and bring up the CMD prompt
  • Nav to C:\Windows\System32
  • Enter the following commands:
    • Ren magnify.exe magnify1.exe
    • Ren cmd.exe magnify.exe
  • Reboot your machine
  • At login click the Ease of Access button at the bottom left of the screen – tick the box that says “Make items on the screen larger (Magnifier)” then click apply and if you’ve done everything correctly a command prompt will appear.
  • Enter the following command:
    • Net user administrator /active:yes
      • This activates the administrator account
    • Net user administrator 123
      • (This is telling the administrator account to use a password of 123)
  • Try logging on!!!
  • Don't forget to go and rename magnify.exe to cmd.exe and magnify1.exe to mangnify.exe

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

2 more armed forces hits today!

Great to see that Pheasant Plucker is getting hits from Armed Forces techs!

Hope it helps you lads and lasses out there :)


Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Fan speed cycles between full and normal speeds - ThinkCentre M93 Tiny, M93p Tiny, M73 Tiny

The fan speed may cycle between full and normal speeds. The symptoms may vary. The system may randomly lose power and/or will not power on when pressing the Power button. The keyboard may not be recognized if it is plugged into USB Port 3.
Affected configurations
The above symptom is associated with, but not limited to, the following systems:
  • ThinkCentre M93 Tiny (Type 10A4, 10A5)
  • ThinkCentre M93p Tiny (Type 10AA, 10AB)
  • ThinkCentre M73 Tiny (Type 10AX, 10AY)
System is confiured with:
A USB keyboard plugged into USB Port 3 in the back of the system and one of the following:
  • The system is set up to go into S4 (Hibernate).
  • The system is powered off (S5 state) from either selecting shutdown from Windows or pressing the Power button on the system.
Applies to:
  • All Operating Systems
The user should update the system BIOS to prevent this issue from occurring.  If running this update from a USB device, then do not plug the device into USB Ports 2 or 3.
For the ThinkCentre M93 Tiny (10A4, 10A5) and ThinkCentre M93p Tiny (10AA, 10AB), update the BIOS to level FBKT73A, or greater, from the following URL.  This BIOS includes an EC firmware update to level 29.
For the ThinkCentre M73 Tiny (10AX, 10AY), update the BIOS to level FHKT40A, or greater, from the following URL.  This BIOS includes an EC firmware update to level 31.

Thursday, 13 March 2014

FLIR One - Thermal imaging for iPhone 5S

Ok so finally my geek life long wish of owning some form of FLIR device seems to be about to become a reality.

FLIR have just announced the imminent release of the FLIR Case for the iPhone 5S which houses a thermal imaging lense and it's own power source.

I have reserved mine but should the nice men and ladies at FLIR want to provide an evaluation unit for me to review on The Pheasant Plucker they could bob me an email :)

More info is available over at their site:

Jabra Rox Bluetooth Headphones

Jabra have just announced the release of their latest music headphones the Rox.

Please take a look at their site for information as to the specifications

Should Jabra wish to contact me in regards to providing evaluation items for technical review please mail me via the blog.

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Microsoft Error Codes seen during SCCM software deployments

I may have posted this before - I can't remember.
Error code               Value  Description
ERROR_SUCCESS               0   Action completed successfully.
ERROR_INVALID_DATA         13   The data is invalid.
ERROR_INVALID_PARAMETER    87   One of the parameters was invalid.
 FAILURE                 1601   The Windows Installer service could not be 
                                accessed. Contact your support personnel 
                                to verify that the Windows Installer 
                                service is properly registered.
ERROR_INSTALL_USEREXIT   1602   User cancel installation.
ERROR_INSTALL_FAILURE    1603   Fatal error during installation.
ERROR_INSTALL_SUSPEND    1604   Installation suspended, incomplete.
ERROR_UNKNOWN_PRODUCT    1605   This action is only valid for products that
                                are currently installed.
ERROR_UNKNOWN_FEATURE    1606   Feature ID not registered.
ERROR_UNKNOWN_COMPONENT  1607   Component ID not registered.
ERROR_UNKNOWN_PROPERTY   1608   Unknown property.
 STATE                   1609   Handle is in an invalid state.
ERROR_BAD_CONFIGURATION  1610   The configuration data for this product is 
                                corrupt. Contact your support personnel.
ERROR_INDEX_ABSENT       1611   Component qualifier not present.
 ABSENT                  1612   The installation source for this product 
                                is not available. Verify that the source 
                                exists and that you can access it.
 VERSION                 1613   This installation package cannot be 
                                installed by the Windows Installer 
                                service. You must install a Windows 
                                service pack that contains a newer version 
                                of the Windows Installer service.
 UNINSTALLED             1614   Product is uninstalled.
ERROR_BAD_QUERY_SYNTAX   1615   SQL query syntax invalid or unsupported.
ERROR_INVALID_FIELD      1616   Record field does not exist.

 RUNNING                 1618   Another installation is already in 
                                progress. Complete that installation 
                                before proceeding with this install.
 OPEN_FAILED             1619   This installation package could not be 
                                opened. Verify that the package exists and 
                                that you can access it, or contact the 
                                application vendor to verify that this is 
                                a valid Windows Installer package.
 INVALID                 1620   This installation package could not be 
                                opened. Contact the application vendor to 
                                verify that this is a valid Windows 
                                Installer package.
 FAILURE                 1621   There was an error starting the Windows 
                                Installer service user interface. Contact 
                                your support personnel.
 FAILURE                 1622   Error opening installation log file. 
                                Verify that the specified log file 
                                location exists and is writable.
 UNSUPPORTED             1623   This language of this installation package 
                                is not supported by your system.
  FAILURE                1624   Error applying transforms. Verify that
                                the specified transform paths are valid.
 REJECTED                1625   This installation is forbidden by system 
                                policy. Contact your system administrator.
 CALLED                  1626   Function could not be executed.
ERROR_FUNCTION_FAILED    1627   Function failed during execution.
ERROR_INVALID_TABLE      1628   Invalid or unknown table specified.
ERROR_DATATYPE_MISMATCH  1629   Data supplied is of wrong type.
ERROR_UNSUPPORTED_TYPE   1630   Data of this type is not supported.
ERROR_CREATE_FAILED      1631   The Windows Installer service failed to 
                                start. Contact your support personnel.
 UNWRITABLE              1632   The temp folder is either full or 
                                inaccessible. Verify that the temp folder 
                                exists and that you can write to it.
 UNSUPPORTED             1633   This installation package is not supported 
                                on this platform. Contact your application 
ERROR_INSTALL_NOTUSED    1634   Component not used on this machine.
 OPEN_FAILED             1635   This patch package could not be opened. 
                                Verify that the patch package exists and 
                                that you can access it, or contact the 
                                application vendor to verify that this is 
                                a valid Windows Installer patch package.
 INVALID                 1636   This patch package could not be opened. 
                                Contact the application vendor to verify 
                                that this is a valid Windows Installer 
                                patch package.
 UNSUPPORTED             1637   This patch package cannot be processed by 
                                the Windows Installer service. You must 
                                install a Windows service pack that 
                                contains a newer version of the Windows 
                                Installer service.
ERROR_PRODUCT_VERSION    1638   Another version of this product is already 
                                installed. Installation of this version 
                                cannot continue. To configure or remove 
                                the existing version of this product, use 
                                Add/Remove Programs on the Control Panel.
 LINE                    1639   Invalid command line argument. Consult the 
                                Windows Installer SDK for detailed command 
                                line help.
  DISALLOWED             1640   Installation from a Terminal Server
                                client session not permitted for 
                                current user.
  INITIATED              1641   The installer has started a reboot.
                                This error code not available 
                                on Windows Installer version 1.0.
  NOT_FOUND              1642   The installer cannot install the
                                upgrade patch because the program
                                being upgraded may be missing, or the
                                upgrade patch updates a different
                                version of the program. Verify that 
                                the program to be upgraded exists on
                                your computer and that you have the 
                                correct upgrade patch.
                                This error code is not available on
                                Windows Installer version 1.0.
 REQUIRED                3010   A restart is required to complete the 
                                install. This does not include installs 
                                where the ForceReboot action is run. Note 
                                that this error will not be available until 
                                future version of the installer. 

Thursday, 20 February 2014

Trend OfficeScan 10 causing Hash Mismatch Errors in SCCM 2007

For the last 2 years of my SCCM Career I've been blighted with issues concerning the above.  I've added exceptions to our Trend server, calls have been logged but I can never seem to get this sorted.

I find that if Trend is running the execmgr.log will sometimes show Hash Mismatch errors.  If I manually disable Trend (or better still remove it!!) - it works fine.

I've started adding a quick command to my Task Sequences and package deployments to temporarily disable OfficeScan while the deployment takes place and it works a charm!!

Simply add the following command lines before and after via Task Sequence or simply create a package with a batch file containing the following.


net stop tmlisten
net stop ntrtscan


net start tmlisten
net start ntrtscan

Obviously this works manually too if you should ever need to disable Trend remotely...  Even if it has a password!!!!!!!! ;)

Tuesday, 4 February 2014

AppV Application Slow to open

I've recently sequenced a Pathology application that we use in the NHS that uses a Terminal Emulator to retrieve bloods direct from the Lab.

I had managed to sequence it fine but the package was taking an age to load up and sometimes timing out completely.

After looking at the SFTLOG (C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Application Virtualization Client) I noticed an error: 4636126-0B01FD04-0000041E

As per AppV error format:

App-V Error 04-0000041E

Starting/Running the application
Error Message / Symptoms:
It took to long until the application was ready for interaction with the users.
The application shuts down after about 5 minutes
Potential Causes:
The application is a Java or DOS like application. App-V can not determine that the application is ready for User Input, because the app does not use default Windows Classes.
Potential Solutions:
In the OSD file, SUBSYSTEM VALUE has to be changed from "windows" to "console" (case sensitive).
If it is an 16-bit application, also the VM VALUE should be set from "Win32" to "Win16"
Microsoft Knowledgebase Article: This articles lists a set of potential causes, however the most common reason (SUBSYSTEM "windows") is not listed there.

Thanks to Falko at for the above.

Once I'd made these changes I updated the package and viola, Bob's your aunties live-in lover!

Thursday, 30 January 2014

Operating System Deployment with USB Dongles (Lenovo in my case)

With the advances in technology we have seen in recent years, devices have become smaller, thinner and lighter than ever before.

With this we are finding that some devices are loosing functionality - ie. Some devices are having ports omitted to retain their slender profile.

The Lenovo X1 Carbon adopted this approach and required a USB dongle which I posted about the pitfalls of PXE boot here: Lenovo X1 PXE Issues

I've seen an increase in the issues these dongles are causing us deployment techs, one of those being that each of these dongles have their own MAC address.  In true tech style when we see this new wizardry the first thing we say is "MINE"... Well actually the first thing we normally say is "Ooh Shiney" but then there's a Smeagle like "My Precious" when we claim the Shiney as our own.

I did this.  I had my very own dongle.  It worked great.  ONCE!  Every subsequent build failed.  I did a bit of research and found that it had it's own MAC that was registering in SCCM so I had to surrender my Shiney and give it on to the user.

I now use the supplied dongles for each build as it isn't worth the trouble but I have it on good authority that with the latest gen of Lenovo kit they are shipping certain models with on-board NICs (therefore unique MACs) and the dongle is purely a port extender utilising USB to present an Ethernet port.

If you have fallen prey to this (and insist on using one dongle to rule them all) you need to read my earlier post to search SCCM for machines by their MAC address.

Have fun...