By default the Active Directory related commands search for a best domain controller. This is great, but by default, I want them to make use of the closest one.

And when I do bulk operations, I even want to do that on the server who have the PDC role. Some might find that useful as well.

# When it comes to scripts that do bulk operations, especially bulk loads and manipulation,
# I use the following within the Script:
if (Get-Command Set-ADServerUsage -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue) 
	Set-ADServerUsage -pdc

Please note: The write operations during bulk operations against the server that has the PDC role might not be allowed within your company. Please ask your Domain Admins before doing it! You might see a increased replication traffic if you use the PDC Server. You might also keep in mind.
There is a fine line between the benefit by using the PDC and the drawbacks that you might get. I might be better to use the closest one instead. Something you have to decide based on the operations that you want to do!

I use PowerShell Web Access a lot while commuting and traveling. That comes handy, because I don’t need a working VPN and with an App (comes free from Sapien) even triggering some long-running scripts from the iPad out of a Hotel room as no longer a pain. And it doesn’t use a lot of data.

Here is a little function to tweak the web-based PowerShell window rendered by the gateway:

Time to remove Java?

After Oracle release a bunch of (Yet again: Critical) Patches today, my Munki Server updated my Java installation… Now I start to think abbot a removal.

About 18 month ago I decided to do a fresh Installation of my Mac! The first since a very long time. While installing everything I decided to pass on Adobes Flash, and guess what: I don’t miss it anymore. Maybe now is a good time to rethink my Java installation.

I guess with the next MacOS Major release I will do another fresh installation and I will try to pass on it.

What do you think?

Public Domain

I’m a big fan of Munki (pronounced monkey, /ˈmʌŋki/, m ah nk ee, or Mung – KEY) an open-source project started by Walt Disney Animation Studios to deploy software and packages to Mac OS X and MacOS based clients. It is written mostly in Python, and it provides a nice way to enforce software installation and/or updates. And since it offers a Mac App Store like Client experience a lot of optional installations (e.g. self-service).

One of the things that I find very useful: You can use scripting as pre- and post-installation parts to customize everything. A few years ago (yep, I use this software for a while now) I started to build several packaged for others. Then the fist enterprise came along and asked me to help them out with an existing Munki installation, during that project, I created a lot of new packages and tweaked most of the existing ones.

Now, a couple of projects and years later, I found, that many still have issues creating packages with customization.

Here is my approach, and I try to stick with it whenever possible: Use packages that you can get from the Vendor, or the Project (if open Source). Even better: Establish an AutoPKG process and work with overrides!

Then use the power of shell scripts to tweak and customize. I’m a scripting guy! I know.

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Exchange Server

Microsoft Released Cumulative Update 6 (KB4012108) for Exchange 2016 today.

This Cumulative Update contains the following:

Exchange Server 2016 Cumulative Update 6 (KB4012108), Download, UM Lang Packs

The Announcement indicates, that this Release supports .Net 4.7, but the Exchange Support Team is still doing some tests, and you should not install it on your Exchange Servers now.
I leave .Net 4.7 on my WSUS Servers for Exchange and I also blocked the installation in the Registry. Just in case!

A sad thing: There is still an issue on my Windows Server 2016 based Exchange Servers!

But the good news: My Workaround still works!

I recently published a new PowerShell Module to Maintain Exchange Servers. I used the ExchangeNodeMaintenanceMode to install Cumulative Update 6 for Exchange 2016 on my Servers.
These servers are test systems, and I highly recommend you to do the same.
Or wait at least a few days, or even better a few weeks before deploy it to you regular Exchange Servers. Just in case, this release has some surprises.

You will find my ExchangeNodeMaintenanceMode Module on GitHub and on the PowerShell Gallery! This is my first Gallery Module, by the way.

Microsoft also Published Exchange Server 2013 Cumulative Update 17 (KB4012114), Download, UM Lang Packs!