The Realm of the Verbal Processor

Jarvis's Ramblings

Presenting at TechEd Too???

Last week I had big news about being invited to be a presenter at the Microsoft Management Summit. That was huge and very encouraging…a very big week. Then came Friday afternoon…

I’m at my daughter’s school watching her in a Geography Bowl competition (which she won!). Just as it was starting, my phone buzzed…an email. I took a quick glance just to see who sent the email. It was from Martin Dey again. Here is part of what it said (copied with Martin’s permission):

The product team liked your topic “Operating System Deployment (OSD) in the Real World” so much they asked me to also propose it for the TechEd US event. They felt this was one of the strongest industry proposals we had received across both MMS and TechEd .

So I went ahead and cross-submitted your topic, and I’m pleased to report it has also been selected for the TechEd US event in Los Angeles in May.

I almost dropped the phone. Wide eyed, I looked over at my wife and told her, “I just received a really big email. We need to talk after this is over.” I spent the rest of the afternoon shaking my head and repeating “Wow”. To say that I am excited would be an understatement! And honestly, that statement from Martin is both honoring and humbling at the same time. Wow was that encouraging. As a family, we went out to celebrate Friday night. Laurel wanted McDonald’s. I wanted Chinese. We did both!

I still need to confirm that I can get the time from Virteva to do the TechEd event, but I don’t think it will be a problem!

Update: Just found out from my leadership that I can officially accept the TechEd speaking invitation!

January 26, 2009 Posted by | Microsoft, MMS, TechEd | 6 Comments

Presenting at MMS 2009

This morning I got an email from Martin Dey (Microsoft) confirming that my session proposal for MMS 2009 has been accepted! I will be presenting at the Microsoft Management Summit in Las Vegas! My session is titled “Operating System Deployment in the Real World”.

I’ll admit…there is certainly a combination of excitement and terror going through my head at this point. Looking forward to it…but I’m also aware that there is going to be a lot of work between now and April 27 to prepare for the session.

See you in Vegas!

January 22, 2009 Posted by | ConfigMgr, Microsoft, MMS | 6 Comments

Acronym Soup

Last week I attended a two day DOVO training (Desktop Optimization using Windows Vista and 2007 Microsoft Office System) at the Microsoft office in Chicago. This was the first time that this training was offered in the US, and it was taught by Steve Campbell from Microsoft. A blurb about DOVO is:

DOVO is a service offering designed by Microsoft Consulting Services (MCS) that was developed around industry best practices for desktop automation. DOVO guidance helps partners automate large scale desktop deployments, accelerate and streamline adoption, simplify desktop management, and help reduce system complexity.

DOVO leverages Microsoft tools and technologies for deploying the desktop.  Based on the Microsoft Deployment Solution Accelerator, it is designed to fully capture the benefits of desktop optimization by helping reduce total cost of ownership, improve user productivity, and increase agility.

Anyway…during the training, we kept a running list of acronyms and tools on the white board. It got to be comically long. Here is the list. How many can you interpret? If you think you know them all, leave a comment with what they stand for. I’m curious if anyone can get all of them. There are a couple of obscure ones.

SA
MAP
ACT
UIA
SMS
MDT/BDD
SCCM
MDOP
AIS
OCT
IO
WINPE
LTI
ZTI
ZTP
UAC
GPMC
SMP
WDS
RIS
HTA
DDPS
ADRAP
SOW
DOVO
OMPM
MOF
MSF
ADDS
WAIK
SCOM
WIM
POC
DART
MAK / KMS
Gimagex
SQL

January 13, 2009 Posted by | ConfigMgr, Microsoft | Leave a comment

Iastore.sys – Status: 0xc0000359

I’m blogging this as much so that I can remind myself in the future what the heck this error means. I’ve come across it several times, and each time I forgot what the issue was and had to figure it out all over again.

So…there is the scenario…I was doing an OSD deployment in ConfigMgr this week…specifically a Vista x64 deployment. The system connected to PXE fine and downloaded the boot image, but when the boot image attempted to start, I got this lovely error message with two key phrases: 0xc0000359 and iastore.sys. (I think the exact message was something like “Windows failed to load because of a critical system driver is missing, or corrupt.”) I know I’ve seen this before, but what does it mean?

Long story short…iastore.sys is part of the Intel mass storage driver. Windows PE needs that mass storage driver to be in the boot image in order to see the hard drive. This is on a Dell system. I had imported the mass storage drivers into my boot images, but had mistakenly put the x86 version of iastore.sys into the x64 boot image.

Although…that leads to a different observation/gripe…Intel…why would you name the x86 and the x64 drivers the same thing? And one more gripe…these are Dell drivers that I have imported into ConfigMgr. If you look at Dell’s version.txt file that is part of the driver, it shows which OSes are applicable for the driver. When you import this driver into ConfigMgr, it imports as being applicable to basically everything (which it is not), and therefore causes problems later. Most of the time this isn’t an issue, but it definitely causes problems at times. The only way to fix it is to manually edit the “applicable to” settings for each driver. I haven’t taken the time to figure out if it is a problem with the way the INFs are created by Dell, or if it is a problem with the way that ConfigMgr parses the files.

All that said…the fix is pretty simple…import the correct driver into the boot image.

November 25, 2008 Posted by | ConfigMgr, Microsoft | 2 Comments

Microsoft Enterprise Desktop Virtualization

Today I went to a Microsoft virtualization event called getVirtualnow. It was an okay event. I got to play with Hyper-V in a few hands on labs. One of the highlights was when the Delivery Director from Virteva (the company I work for) introduced me to a couple of the Microsoft guys that he used to work with. One of them was named Geoff Choi (I think I spelled that correctly). He was one of the presenters for the third session. He was doing a demo of App-V 4.5 as well as Microsoft Enterprise Desktop Virtualization (MED-V).

Now…I know you are asking…what in the world is MED-V? Do you remember earlier this year when Microsoft announced that they had bought a company called Kidaro? MED-V is what Microsoft has done with Kidaro.

For those who don’t know what this is, I will try to explain it in layman’s terms. App-V is application virtualization. You package an application and can easily stream it to workstations. It makes packaging and deploying apps really easy. And upgrades? Even easier. One limitation of App-V is that you can’t use it to remediate application compatibility issues. The application must be able to install in order to be packaged and deployed in App-V. What this means is that if a program will not run under Windows Vista…you cannot use App-V to get it to magically work on Vista. However…

MED-V doesn’t just virtualize the applications…it also virtualizes the underlying OS. So…when you package the application, you also package the parts of a back level OS that is necessary for the application to run properly. To the user, it is seamless. It just looks like a normal program. But behind the scenes, it has loaded what is necessary to run. Pretty cool. And honestly…game changing.

One of the things you can do with MED-V is that you could package the apps you need up and put them on a USB memory stick…and run them from the memory stick. You can set the memory stick to expire after a length of time. Imagine having a contractor come into your company that you need to give access to your company’s systems. Instead of needing to obtain and provision a computer for the contractor…let him use his own laptop and give him a USB key that securely connects to your company’s system.

One of the key bits of info…was the release date of MED-V. The last I had heard was the it was going to be released 1st Half of 2009…which I (and most sane people) would interpret as most likely late June. Well…according to the guy I talked to at Microsoft, the bits are complete. It will go RTM soon, with general availability of January 1, 2009. Very cool.

October 21, 2008 Posted by | Microsoft | 5 Comments