Control USB Drive Letter Assignment in Windows XP/2003/Vista/2008

Just found some good information about controlling the USB device drive letter in Windows from Petri site:


The USBDLM is a freeware for personal use Windows service that gives control over Window’s drive letter assignment for USB drives. Running as service makes it independent of the logged on user’s privileges, so there is no need to give the users the privilege to change drive letters.It automatically solves conflicts between USB drives and network drives of the currently logged on user. Furthermore you can define new default letters for USB drives and much more.


USB drive letter manager – USBDLM http://www.uwe-sieber.de/usbdlm_e.html


Download USBDLMhttp://www.uwe-sieber.de/files/usbdlm.zip (about 180KB)


What can USBDLM do for newly attached USB drives?


  • Check if the letter is used by a network share of the currently logged on user and assign the next letter that is really available
  • Reserve letters, so they are not used for local drives
  • Assign a letter from a list of new default letters, also dependent on many different criteria as the active user, drive type, connection (USB, FireWire), USB port, volume label, size and others
  • Assign letters for a specific USB drive by putting an INI file on the drive
  • Remove the drive letters of card readers until a card is inserted
  • Show a balloon tip with the assigned drive letter(s)
  • Define autorun events depending on many different criteria
  • Many other things, see help file, available online as HTML version too

All functions are applied to USB drives at the moment they are being attached, when the USBDLM service starts up and when a user logs on.


Usage


Instructions can be found on the author’s site, so you’d better read them from there.


Running without a configuration USBDLM only prevents that an USB drive gets the letter of a network share drive of the currently logged on user. It remounts then to the next letter that is really available.


However it is worth noting that USBDLM is configured thru a text file, the USBDLM.INI. The USBDLM.INI is read from the folder of the USBDLM.EXE.


New default letters for new USB drives (flash or hard drive)


[DriveLetters]
 
Letter1=U
 
Letter2=Y
 
Letter3=Z

USBDLM can have up to 9 ‘LetterX’ entries in each section. They don’t have to be continuous.


For Card readers, the typical 20-in-1 card reader eats one drive letter for each of its slots – if we have a card for or not. USBDLM can remove the reader’s drive letter until a media is inserted.


[Settings]
 
NoMediaNoLetter=1

USBDLM assings then a drive letter as configured. If you need different drive letters for a multislot cardreader, then use the criterion ‘DeviceType’ in a DriveLetters section (MSCR is short for MultiSlotCardReaders which can be used too):


[DriveLetters1]
 
DeviceType=MSCR
 
Letter1=R
 
Letter2=W
 
Letter3=

You can prevent Windows mounting to certain letters by putting them into section ExcludedLetters. This is especially useful for letters of network shares which Windows may assign to USB drives while booting.


[ExcludedLetters]

Letter1=F

Letter2=

Letter3=

USBDLM can show a balloon tip with information about the drive letter(s) or mount points used for a just attached drive:


[BalloonTips]
 
Enabled=1

I hope you found this article useful, and that it saves you time on the job!

How to configure the size limit for both (.pst) and (.ost) files in Outlook 2010, Outlook 2007, and in Outlook 2003

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;832925


Background:


Microsoft Office Outlook 2010, Microsoft Office Outlook 2007, and Microsoft Office Outlook 2003 support American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and UNICODE personal folders (.pst) and offline folder (.ost) files. This article describes how to use the following four registry entries to limit the size of both the .pst and the .ost files:


  • The MaxFileSize registry entry
  • The WarnFileSize registry entry
  • The MaxLargeFileSize registry entry
  • The WarnLargeFileSize registry entry

Note The WarnLargeFileSize and WarnFileSize registry entries do not enable Outlook to warn you before the file size limit is reached.


The MaxFileSize registry entry


The MaxFileSize registry entry determines the absolute maximum size that both the .pst and the .ost files can grow to. After this maximum size is reached, Outlook does not permit the size of the file to grow beyond this size.


 


The WarnFileSize registry entry


The WarnFileSize registry entry determines the maximum data that both the .pst and the .ost files can have. After this maximum data is reached, neither the .pst nor the .ost files are permitted to add any more data. However, the size of the physical file may still increase because of internal processes.

In the following table, the MaxLargeFileSize registry entry and the WarnLargeFileSize registry entry refer to a UNICODE formatted (new Large format) file, and the MaxFileSize registry entry and the WarnFileSize registry entry refer to an ANSI formatted (an earlier Microsoft Outlook format) file. The UNICODE values are set in megabyte (MB) increments, while the ANSI values are set in byte increments.


Outlook 2010



Collapse this tableExpand this table
Name Type Valid Data Range Default
MaxLargeFileSize REG_DWORD 0x00000001 – 0x0000C800 0x0000C800 51,200 (50 GB)
WarnLargeFileSize REG_DWORD 0x00000000 – 0x0000BE00 0x0000BE00 48,640 (47.5 GB)
MaxFileSize REG_DWORD 0x001F4400 – 0x7C004400 0x7BB04400 2,075,149,312 (1.933 GB)
WarnFileSize REG_DWORD 0x00042400 – 0x7C004400 0x74404400 1,950,368,768 (1.816 GB)

Outlook 2007 and Outlook 2003



Collapse this tableExpand this table
Name Type Valid Data Range Default
MaxLargeFileSize REG_DWORD 0x00000001 – 0x0000C800 0x00005000 20,480 (20 GB)
WarnLargeFileSize REG_DWORD 0x00000000 – 0x0000BE00 0x00004C00 19,456 (19 GB)
MaxFileSize REG_DWORD 0x001F4400 – 0x7C004400 0x7BB04400 2,075,149,312 (1.933 GB)
WarnFileSize REG_DWORD 0x00042400 – 0x7C004400 0x74404400 1,950,368,768 (1.816 GB)

Outlook 2010


The policy location for the registry entries is located in the following path in Registry Editor:


HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Outlook\PST

The user preference location for the registry entries is located in the following path in Registry Editor:


HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Outlook\PST

Outlook 2007


The policy location for the registry entries is located in the following path in Registry Editor:


HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\12.0\Outlook\PST

The user preference location for the registry entries is located in the following path in Registry Editor:


HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\12.0\Outlook\PST

Outlook 2003


The policy location for the registry entries is located in the following path in Registry Editor:


HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook\PST

The user preference location for the registry entries is located in the following path in Registry Editor:


HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook\PST






MORE INFORMATION(Detailed Steps):


Follow these steps to configure the size limit for both the .pst and the .ost files.

Note The settings that are discussed in this article apply to both .ost and .pst files. If you modify these registries, this can affect .ost files that are used with Cached Exchange Mode, with AutoArchive, and with .pst. files.

Important This section, method, or task contains steps that tell you how to modify the registry. However, serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly. Therefore, make sure that you follow these steps carefully. For added protection, back up the registry before you modify it. Then, you can restore the registry if a problem occurs. For more information about how to back up and restore the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
322756  (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/322756/ ) How to back up and restore the registry in Windows
  1. Click Start, and then click Run.
  2. In the Open box, type regedit, and then click OK.
  3. In the left pane, expand My Computer, and then expand HKEY_CURRENT_USER.
  4. Expand Software, and then expand Policies.
  5. Expand Microsoft, and then expand Office.
  6. Expand 11.0 for Outlook 2003, 12.0 for Outlook 2007, or 14.0 for Outlook 2010, and then expand Outlook.
  7. Click PST, and then right-click MaxFileSize in the right pane.
  8. Click Modify, and then type the value in the Value data box.
  9. Click OK.
  10. Right-click WarnFileSize, and repeat steps 8 through 9.
  11. Right-click MaxLargeFileSize, and repeat steps 8 through 9.
  12. Right-click WarnLargeFileSize, and repeat steps 8 through 9.
Note You may have to create the registry values if they do not exist. If the registry values do not exist, follow these steps to create them.
  1. Click Start, click Run, type Regedit, and then click OK.
  2. In the left pane, expand following registry key:

    For Outlook 2010
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Outlook
    For Outlook 2007
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\12.0\Outlook
    For Outlook 2003
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook
  3. On the Edit menu, point to New, and then click Key.
  4. Type PST, and then press ENTER.
  5. On the Edit menu, point to New, and then click DWORD value.
  6. Type MaxFileSize, and then press ENTER two times.
  7. In the Edit DWORD Value window, type the value in the Value data box, and then click OK.
  8. Repeat steps 3 through 7 to create another DWORD WarnFileSize.
  9. Repeat steps 3 through 7 to create another DWORD MaxLargeFileSize.
  10. Repeat steps 3 through 7 to create another DWORD WarnLargeFileSize, and then close the registry.

    Note For mass deployment of these registry keys on end-user machines, the ORK tool can be used.
To automate the registry creation on end-user machines, use ORK for deployment scenarios.
It is recommended that the values between the MaxFileSize registry entry and the WarnFileSize registry entry, and the values between the MaxLargeFileSize registry entry and the WarnLargeFileSize registry entry be at least 5 percent (%) so that internal processes are not hindered from continuing.

If the value of the MaxFileSize registry entry ever exceeds the ANSI 2 gigabyte (GB) limit on either the .pst or the .ost files, the value will be ignored to limit the size to 2 GB to prevent corruption. The default value for the WarnFileSizeregistry registry entry is calculated to be 95% of the MaxFileSize registry entry for a UNICODE file, and it remains at 1,950,368,768 bytes for small ANSI files.

Note You can set the UNICODE limits beyond the values that are listed in the table. However, we do not recommend doing this because performance can decrease.

If .ost files or .pst files reach the limit that is specified in the WarnFileSize or the WarnLargeFileSize registries, the compaction function is triggered to try to reduce the size of the file to a usable level. When the WarnFileSize or the WarnLargeFileSize limit is reached, e-mail messages cannot be sent (provided that sent e-mail messages are stored in the Sent Items folder), and items cannot be copied or moved within the file. If the file is an archive .pst file that is used for AutoArchive, the AutoArchive operation will fail. However, e-mail messages can be deleted or archived from a .pst or from an .ost file that is currently being used as the default delivery location.

The following are some of the errors that may occur when files reach the maximums specified in the registries:
  • When you try to move items to a .pst or an .ost file that has reach the limit, you receive the following error message:
    Can’t move the items. The file <path>\<filename>.pst has reached its maximum size. To reduce the amount of data in this file, select some items that you no longer need, and then permanently delete them.
  • When e-mail messages are delivered to a .pst or an .ost file that are using Cached Exchange Mode, and the file has reached the limit, the Mailbox Cleanup wizard launches.

How to Export and Import Mailboxes To and From PST

A student asked about exporting mailbox in Exchange 2007 to pst file, I located the steps from net and re-post here:


Export/Import to PST Requirements


In order to export or import mailboxes to PST files the following requirements must be met:


  • Export/Import to PST must be run from a 32 bit client machine with Exchange Management Tools installed (Version Exchange 2007 SP1 or later). The 32bit requirement comes from a dependency with the Outlook client. You can download Exchange 2007 Sp1 32-bit (E2K7SP1EN32.exe) from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=6be38633-7248-4532-929b-76e9c677e802&displaylang=en *You will also need to install PowerShell before you install the management tools.
  • Either Outlook 2003 SP2 or Outlook 2007 must be installed on the client machine.
  • The user running the task must be an Exchange Organization Admin or an Exchange Server Admin on the server where the mailbox to export/import lives.
  • The user running the task must also have full mailbox access to the user mailbox you want to export/import.
  • To use the export-mailbox cmdlet, the source mailbox must reside on either Exchange 2007, Exchange 2003 SP2 (or later), or Exchange 2000 SP3 (or later).
  • To use the import-mailbox cmdlet, the target mailbox must reside on an Exchange 2007 mailbox server.
  • You cannot import or export data to or from a mailbox in a Recovery Storage Group
  • You cannot import or export data to or from a public folder.

Granting Full Mailbox Access


To grant the user running the task full mailbox access to all mailboxes the easiest way to do this is by running the below Power Shell Command:


Get-Mailbox | Add-MailboxPermission –user Username –AccessRight FullAccess –Inheritancetype all


Replace username with the Exchange Organization Admin username.


If you only wish to add permission to one specific user, simply run:


Add-MailboxPermission –Identitiy “MailAlias” –User Username –AccessRight FullAccess –InheritanceType all


Alternatively you can also add full mailbox access through the Exchange Management Console.


Exporting Mailboxes to PST Files


The most basic cmdlet to export a mailbox to a PST file is as follows:


Export-Mailbox –Identity <mailboxUser> -PSTFolderPath <pathToSavePST>


PSTFolderPath must be a full path pointing either to a directory or to a (.pst) file. If a directory is specified a PST file named after the mailbox alias will be used as the target of the export. Note that if the PST file already exists the contents of the mailbox will be merged into it.


To export multiple mailboxes to their respective .pst files at once you can pipe in the identities of those mailboxes to the export task. Notice that when bulk exporting the PSTFolderPath parameter must forcefully point to a directory since one .pst file will be created for each mailbox.


Example:


Get-Mailbox -Database “mailbox database” | Export-Mailbox -PSTFolderPath D:\PSTs


Importing mailboxes from PST files


The process for importing mailbox contents from a PST file is quite similar:


Import-Mailbox -Identity <mailboxUser> -PSTFolderPath <PSTFileLocation>


Again, PSTFolderPath must be the full path to the directory where the .pst file lives or to the (.pst) file itself. In the case where PSTFolderPath points to a directory the cmdlet will try to match the mailbox alias with the name of an existing .pst file in the specified directory and import the content of that file.


Just as with the export to PST scenario, when bulk importing mailboxes the PSTFolderPath must forcefully point to a directory and the task logic will try to match mailboxes alias with the .pst file names under that location. If no match is found for a particular mailbox, that mailbox will be skipped.


Example:


Get-Mailbox -Database “mailbox database” | Import-Mailbox -PSTFolderPath D:\PSTs


Filtering content in Export/Import to PST


When only specific content is desired in the PST file (or back into the mailbox) a common set of filters can be used to leave out the rest of the messages. Export/Import to PST support the following filters: Locale, StartDate, EndDate, ContentKeywords, SubjectKeywords, AttachmentFileNames, AllContentKeywords, SenderKeywords, and RecipientKeywords.


Example: Import only those messages that were created between 1/1/06 and 12/1/06 and contain the word “review” in the subject and any of the words {“project”,”alpha”} in the body.


Import-mailbox -Identity ricardr -PSTFolderPath D:\PSTs -StartDate 1/1/06 -EndDate 12/1/06 -SubjectKeywords:’review’ -ContentKeywords:’project’,’alpha’


and:

You cannot extract directly from RSG Database.
Create a new Mailbox and restore content to it and export it then to PST:

Restore-Mailbox -Identity newMailbox -RSGDatabase “Recovery Storage Group\My Database” -RSGMailbox mailboxToRecover -TargetFolder “something”

Adding backup feature by installing Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 2

Now that Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 2 is available,
Microsoft has added a new backup plug-in that makes it possible to create snapshot backups using VSS from Windows Server Backup.


Read an article by Jaap Wesselius that explains the process with SP2


http://www.simple-talk.com/exchange/exchange-articles/exchange-backups-on-windows-server-2008/?utm_source=simpletalkExchange&utm_medium=email&utm_content=ExchangeBackups-20090901&utm_campaign=Exchange

E2k7 Storage Calculator

Microsoft has made changes to the Exchange 2007 Mailbox Server Role Storage Calculator.
These changes include:

• LUN Architecture
• Backup Architecture
• I/O Calculation
• SCR & Log Capacity Calculation
• Log Generation

For a detailed list of changes, visit the following site:
http://msexchangeteam.com/archive/2007/07/05/445802.aspx

To view the official blog post and/or to download, visit the following site:
http://msexchangeteam.com/archive/2007/01/15/432207.aspx


 

Uninstall software by using SCCM?

One of my students asked about using SCCM to uninstall software from client PCs. After some research, I found the following:


Usually you create an uninstall package to handle uninstallation, but this depends on whats installed.


Some command line examples if you have msi based installations


 http://technet2.microsoft.com/windowsserver/en/library/9361d377-9011-4e21-8011-db371fa220ba1033.mspx?mfr=true


 


msiexec/x {Package | ProductCode}

Parameters
/x
uninstalls a product.
Package
Name of the Windows Installer package file.
ProductCode
Globally unique identifier (GUID) of the Windows Installer package.
Remarks

Windows Installer command-line options are not case-sensitive.

For more information about the Windows Installer command-line options, see Related Topics.

Examples

To remove or uninstall a package, type:

msiexec /x Example.msi


 


So normally you create one collection for installation and taget your package to and one for unsinallation.
Uninstallations doesnt nessecary need to be msi files it can also be exe files or uninstall files that are able to
remove the software, though its very important to test this behavior in test so that it keeps your environment clean.


And from MS staff’s comment:


There is no automation for this. You do have to create your own packages and programs to uninstall the software,
whether it is based on msiexec /x or a setup.exe /unistall or whatever command you would use to uninstall the program.
That unfortunately is program specific, so you have to figure it out for each program you’d want to remove.
Then create a package, program and advertisement to do the job of uninstallation.

Get the MSI file of the JRE installer for deployment

Method 1:


1. Run the Offline installer jre-6uxx-windows-i586-p.exe
2. Install it.
3. When the last page of the install appears, DO NOT click Finish yet.
4. Go go Application Data\Sun\Java and find a folder named jre1.6.0_11,
This contains two files:  an MSI and a CAB.  In order to run the MSI, you must have the CAB in the same folder.


Method 2:


1. Run the JRE Kernel installer.
2. This is the one that downloads everything (actually an MSI) over the internet.(jre-6xxx-windows-i586-p-iftw-k.exe)
3. The FIRST page of the installer appears.
4. Stop right now before installing and look in Application Data\Sun\Java\jre1.6.0_11 and find a file: jre1.6.0_11-c-k.msi

This is a larger self contained MSI.

Any of the MSI or java EXE installers can be run almost silently (just a progress bar) by passing /qr on the command.

Examples:

msiexec /qr jre1.6.0_11-c-k.msi

or

jre-6u11-windows-i586-p.exe /qr

Windows 7 GodMode and Other Folder Shortcuts

I have created a “GodMode” shortcut for my access to some system utitlity, i find those info from the net, enjoy!


 This feature is intended to give developers quick access to areas of the operating system. In case you have missed it – you can create the folder as follows:


1. Create a folder on your desktop


2. Name it DevLinks.{ED7BA470-8E54-465E-825C-99712043E01C}


What ever you put before the period (.) will be the name of the folder created on the desktop (you don’t have to call the folder GodMode)


When you enter the folder you will see a long list of shortcuts to areas within the operating system. It should be pointed out that there are no new tools within this folder – the shortcuts in this folder link to tools, utilities and interfaces that are already available and can be found in Control Panel – it just puts them all into one big list and categorises them.


So if this has wetted your appetite for more shortcut folders, below is a list of additional useful folders that you can create using the same process described above. I have named the folder accordingly to give you a clue as to what each one does:


LOCATION.{00C6D95F-329C-409a-81D7-C46C66EA7F33}
BIOMETRIC.{0142e4d0-fb7a-11dc-ba4a-000ffe7ab428}
POWER.{025A5937-A6BE-4686-A844-36FE4BEC8B6D}
NOTIFICATION.{05d7b0f4-2121-4eff-bf6b-ed3f69b894d9}
CREDENTIALS.{1206F5F1-0569-412C-8FEC-3204630DFB70}
NETWORKAPPS.{15eae92e-f17a-4431-9f28-805e482dafd4}
DEFAULTS.{17cd9488-1228-4b2f-88ce-4298e93e0966}
ASSEMBLIES.{1D2680C9-0E2A-469d-B787-065558BC7D43}
WIRELESS.{1FA9085F-25A2-489B-85D4-86326EEDCD87}
NETWORK.{208D2C60-3AEA-1069-A2D7-08002B30309D}
DRIVES.{20D04FE0-3AEA-1069-A2D8-08002B30309D}
PRINTERS.{2227A280-3AEA-1069-A2DE-08002B30309D}
REMOTE.{241D7C96-F8BF-4F85-B01F-E2B043341A4B}
FIREWALL.{4026492F-2F69-46B8-B9BF-5654FC07E423}
PERFORMANCE.{78F3955E-3B90-4184-BD14-5397C15F1EFC}

Managing Device Driver by System Center Configuration Manager(SCCM)

Recently, one of my students ask about driver management in his office environment and i find this article from the net so i re-post to here:


Driver Management (Part 1) – Configuration Manager
By BenHunter:


————————————————


I am often asked what the best way is to manage drivers with both BDD/MDT and ConfigMgr. With this in mind I thought I would create two blog posts dealing with this topic. The first post (this one) will cover ConfigMgr and the second BDD/MDT driver management.

Please note this is not the only way to manage drivers, there are many different ways to manage drivers. However this is an approach that I have used many times with much success.

Overview

Before I get into the details I would like to provide a quick overview of driver management.

The first thing we must understand is the type of drivers that you need to manage. I place drivers into two categories:

  1. NICE Drivers – Drivers that install using an INF file.
  2. BAD Drivers – Drivers that must be “installed” – This could be a Bluetooth driver, finger print reader software or even DVD software that is specific to a particular model type. I also refer to these drivers as “Hardware based applications”.

Next we need to understand where drivers are used during the deployment process. There are two areas where they are used:

  1. Host OS – These are drivers that are installed on the Host OS.
  2. Boot images – These are drivers that are required by the ConfigMgr Windows PE boot images to enable OS deployment. The key driver types are network and mass storage drivers.

Finally we need to understand the options ConfigMgr provides for installing drivers. Whenever you import drivers you must add them to a driver package. Once the drivers have been added to a package there are two methods you can use to install the drivers:

  1. Auto apply drivers – Driver packages are primarily for distribution purposes. ConfigMgr performs a PnP scan of the computer and chooses which drivers to install from all available drivers in all available driver packages.  You can filter by driver categories, is tells ConfigMgr to only consider certain categories when choosing drivers.
  2. Apply driver package – All the drivers in the package are injected, whether they are needed or not.

So now that I have covered the basics lets discuss how I manage drivers.

Process

I find the simplest way to describe how I manage drivers is by using an example. The example I will use I perhaps the most common scenario in OS deployment, adding support for a new hardware model.

At a high level the process involves the following steps:

  1. Create a new package that contains all of the required drivers for this hardware type
  2. Add an “Apply driver package” task to the task sequence with a WMI filter based on model type
  3. If required I configure the “Apply driver package” to apply a Mass Storage driver
  4. Create an application for each driver that must be installed
  5. Add all applications to the task sequence with a WMI filter based on model type

I can hear everyone asking the question, why do I use the “Apply driver package” process rather than the “Auto apply drivers” process? Well nice of you to ask, I appreciate the flexibility that the “Auto Apply Drivers” action gives but it does not cover all scenarios. I prefer to use one method of driver installation that will install all drivers (simple is best). The two scenarios that are not covered by “Auto apply drivers” process are:

  1. Devices that aren’t found by a PnP scan such as USB devices, multi level drivers and devices not enabled during deployment (like Bluetooth). 
  2. Mass Storage drivers.  On pre Vista operating systems, boot critical drivers have to be installed with Apply Driver Package.

The second obvious question is what is a WMI filter and why do we use it? You cannot add one “Apply driver package” task to the task sequence that will automatically determine the hardware and install only the package you require (this is what I would like :)). So to get around this issue you need to add an “Apply driver package”  task to the task sequence for each hardware type. You do not want to apply every package to every machine so we need some way of ensuring that each package is installed on the correct hardware type only. Fortunately ConfigMgr has the ability to filter tasks based on a WMI query.

It is also worth noting that if a Mass storage is required for a particular hardware type then ConfigMgr will inject it for you! This was not previously possible with pre Vista operating systems. This is one of my favourite features of ConfigMgr.

Steps

So enough of all this talk lets get down to the actual steps required to implement driver management.

Create a driver package (GOOD Drivers)

1.  Gather together all of the good drivers for the new hardware type and place them in a folder.

2.  Open the deployment console and Navigate to Site Database – Computer Management – Operating System Deployment – Drivers

3.  Right click on Drivers and select Import (This will launch the Import new driver wizard)

4.  On the Locate Driver screen select Import all drivers in the following network path (UNC)

5.  Specify a UNC path to your drivers folder in the Source folder field and click Next

6.  On the Driver Details screen ensure all drivers are selected and click Next

7.  On the Add Driver to Packages screen click New Package

8.  On the New Driver Package window update the Package Name filed will an appropriate name (e.g. Toshiba – Tecra M5)

9.  Update the Driver Package Source field with an appropriate location, this will most likely be stored with your other packages. Click Next.

10. If you need to add any network or mass storage drivers to your boot images then perform the following step. On the Add Driver to Boot Images screen select any boot images that require the updated drivers and click Next.

NOTE: You will need to update the boot image distribution points for this change to take effect.

11.  At the Summary Progress and Confirmation screens accept the default settings and Close the wizard.

12. Once you have created your driver package then you should assign it to distribution points at all sites where this hardware type is deployed.

Add driver package to the task sequence

Once we have created the driver package we need to add it to our task sequence.

1.  Create a folder that will contain all of your “Apply Driver Package” tasks. This folder must be added before the Setup windows and ConfigMgr task. When I have a group of similar tasks to add to the task sequence then I create a folder for these tasks. This is shown in the screen shot below.

2.  Add an“Apply Driver Package” task to this folder specifying the driver package that you have created in the previous step. If this model type requires a mass storage driver then select it as shown below.

       image

3.  Next we need to add a WMI condition to this task.  The first thing we need to do is determine the value of the WMI model field for our hardware type. I have found the simplest way to do this is via a WMIC query.

    The following steps detail how to perform a WMI, ensure that these steps are run on the new hardware NOT the server:

      a. Open a Command Prompt

      b. Type WMIC

      c. To determine the Model, type CSProduct Get Name

4. Select the task Options tab

5. Select the Add condition drop down menu and select Query WMI.

        image 

6. Add the following text to the WQL Query field where <MODEL> is replaced by the WMI value for your hardware type – SELECT * FROM Win32_ComputerSystem WHERE Model LIKE “%<MODEL>%” and click OK

NOTE: For some model types there can numerous variations of the WMI model value. For example the HP D530 or many IBM computers. In these scenarios you can specify part of the value in the <MODEL> field. For example when the WMI value for a HP D530 is “HP D530 [ABC12345]”  then you can specify “HP D530″.

      image

Install Hardware based applications (BAD Drivers)

The last part of the driver management puzzle is the BAD Drivers or hardware based applications.

The first thing you need to do is create an application in ConfigMgr that will install the application. I will not provide step by step guidance on this process but it is important that the following two settings are enabled:

1.  The program must be set to run “Whether or not a user is logged on”

2.  The option “Allow this program to be installed from the Install Software task sequence without being advertised” must be enabled

Once you have created the application you need to add it to our task sequence.

1.  Create a folder that will contain all of your “Application Installation” tasks. This folder must be added after the Setup windows and ConfigMgr task. I usually call this folder “Hardware Based Applications”.

2.  Create a folder within the folder you created in the previous step. This folder should be named after the hardware type (e.g. Toshiba – Tecra M5).

NOTE: When installing hardware based applications I create a folder for each hardware type that contains all of the applications for that hardware type. I then apply the WMI conditions to the folder, NOT the application.

       image

4.  Next we need to add a WMI condition to this folder.

5.  Select the task Options tab

6.  Select the Add condition drop down menu and select Query WMI.

7.  Add the following text to the WQL Query field replacing <MODEL> with the WMI value for your hardware type – SELECT * FROM Win32_ComputerSystem WHERE Model LIKE “%<MODEL>%” and click OK

8.  Add an“Install Software” task to this folder specifying the application that you have created in the previous step.

9. Repeat this process for all hardware based applications!

 

So that’s how I manage drivers …. simple :)

For more information no driver management please refer to the ConfigMgr online documentation library.

Driver Management (Part 2) – Manageing drivers with MDT 2008 can be found here.

This post was contributed by Ben Hunter a Consultant with Microsoft Services New Zealand.

————————————–

Just another Microsoft MVPs site