Category Archives: Microsoft

Generating Azure Management Certificate for Microsoft Virtual Machine Converter 3.1


If you’re about to upload Hyper-V or VMware vSphere virtual machine(s) to Microsoft Azure you need to properly configure the connection in Microsoft Virtual Machine Converter.

Subscription ID (which everyone should hopefully know), as well as Certificate Thumbprint are required to make this happen. Subscription ID can be retrieved either via the management portal or Get-AzureSubscription commandlet but Certificate Thumbprint is not so easy.

Here is the MVMC screen I’m on about:


If you have connected to your Azure subscription in the past using Powershell, chances are you already have the certificate that’s required. In my case, I like to keep things separated so thought it would be best to generate a new cert and use that cert specifically for MVMC related tasks.
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Installation of .NET 3.5 fails on Windows 8 with Error Code 0x800F0906


You would have thought that installing .NET 3.5 on Windows 8 will be relatively straight forward – wrong answer!

The easiest way to do this is to go to Control Panel –> All Control Panel Items –> Programs and Features and simply add .NET Framework 3.5 (includes .NET 2.0 and 3.0)


but you are likely to hit one of the following errors:

“Windows couldn’t complete the requested changes. Windows couldn’t connect to the internet to download necessary files. Make sure that you’re connected to the internet, and click ‘Retry’ to try again. Error code: 0x800F0906”

“Update NetFx3 of package Microsoft .NET Framework 3.0 failed to be turned on. Status: 0x800F0906.”

“Update NetFx3 of package Microsoft .NET Framework 3.0 failed to be turned on. Status: 0x800F081F.”

“Update NetFx3 of package Microsoft .NET Framework 3.0 failed to be turned on. Status: 0x800F0907.”
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Enabling BitLocker fails with “BitLocker Setup could not find a target system drive. You may need to manually prepare your drive for BitLocker”


My workplace has finally decided to start encrypting their mobile devices with BitLocker. After number of laptops completed successfully (and without any major issues) today we have hit problems when BitLocker wizard would fail with the following message:

“BitLocker Setup could not find a target system drive. You may need to manually prepare your drive for BitLocker”


So far only one machine was affected but there could easily be others. Solution to this issue was not immediately obvious but its essentially due to Windows (or BitLocker wizard) not being able to shrink the drive to create the system partition that’s required for BitLocker (there was only one partition). Trying to manually shrink the drive using Disk Management would not work too as “Size of available shrink space in MB:” was equaling to 0:


Now this number was showing 44MB before I ran Windows Defrag tool but now is 0MB meaning you cannot shrink the drive at all (not even by 1MB!) In Windows Explorer, internal hard drive was showing 120GB in size with roughly 60GB free so there was plenty of free disk space available in order to re-size the partitions.

Two quick fixes that were applied to finally resolve this are as follows:

  • Since the problematic machine was a laptop (Dell Latitude E6230) hibernation was turned off (powercfg -h off in command line)
  • System Restore points were also deleted (cleanmgr is the command, then More Options tab, System Restore and Shadow Copies and Clean up)
  • After this I re-run BitLocker drive encryption wizard and all was happy again!

    Side note – trying to manually prep the drive using bdehdcfg i.e. bdehdcfg -target c: shrink -size 300 -quiet -restart was not working too.

    Changing Windows 7 system locale for non-Unicode programs

    Changing Windows 7 system locale for non-Unicode programs in registry

    Something rather strange crept up today and its do to with non-Unicode language settings in Windows 7 which weren’t working properly. Basically some of our printers didn’t print barcodes properly and after some extensive troubleshooting the culprit was language in Windows that was set to English (United States) instead of English (United Kingdom) You can find system locale settings for non-Unicode programs under:


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    Scripting DHCP server deployments using netsh in Windows Server 2008 R2


    Another quick post to show how you can quickly deploy fully working DHCP server with multiple scopes in a matter of seconds. In my case it was a single server with 90 very different scopes and doing this manually would be just soo boring and long that’s unreal. Unfortunately Windows Server 2012 wasn’t an option so no PowerShell love but Windows Server 2008 R2 is still pretty decent and using netsh wasn’t as painful as it seemed. To get us started we need to install the DHCP Server role and start the required service (dhcpserver):

    Next step is to authorize DHCP server in the enterprise so we can actually use it to dish out IP addresses:

    Other useful commands here would include:

    To deauthorize the server –

    and to list all authorized servers –

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    Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 – How to Sync Time from External Time Source?


    Quick post to show how you can sync your domain controllers with external time source ( or for example). By default, all machines in the domain will sync time from the domain controller which is the internal time server – if you have more than one DC then time will sync from the DC that holds the PDC emulator FSMO role. To check which DC is PDC emulator in your domain you need to run netdom /query fsmo command like so:


    Once PDC emulator role is established there is few commands we need to run in order for time to sync, these are (run on PDC emulator):

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    Windows 7 / Server 2008 R2 “Changing the Primary Domain DNS name of this computer to “” failed….”


    Windows Server 2008 R2 VMs started giving me errors while joining the domain recently, here is the exact error message that comes up:


    netsetup.log (%SystemRoot%\debug\netsetup.log) shows no errors and my VMs appears to be joined properly:


    Now to fix this there are two potential solutions/recommendations:
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    How to List Add/Remove Programs on a Local/Remote Machine


    Another quick post to show how to list installed programs in Add/Remove programs on local and/or remote machine(s).

    wmi is what makes this possible and the command we need on local machine is as follows:

    wmic product get name,version

    – on remote one we have to add node parameter to our wmi statement:

    wmic /node:”FQDN_Goes_Here” product get name,version

    Either one can be exported by adding:

    /format:csv > Export.csv

    at the end.

    That’s it!

    Active Directory Script to Shutdown Computers per OU


    If you need to shutdown computers per OU in Active Directory here is one way of doing it:

    The only change you have to make for this script to work is to provide an LDAP string/path to the OU in AD where you’d like to shut the PCs.

    In my company we had to come up with a solution to comply with the “green” policy enforced upon us. Initially I have tried the built-in shutdown command and feeding in computer names using Excel and CONCATENATE function. Issue with that approach was that my script was trying to reach out to each machine to check if its on the network and pingable taking too long to complete. Script above doesn’t have the same issues – it literally fires up shutdown request simultaneously to all machines on the specified OU – much quicker and definitely more effective!

    If you guys have other ideas or have other solutions please let me know in comments below!

    Active Directory “computer name contains” search string


    You just have to love the simple things in this world that are not so obvious at first thought…

    In AD if you try to search for computer name and would like to be slightly more specific you have a problem. Here is the default choice:

    The rather obvious choice would include “computer name contains” but sadly the option is not there! Solution? Simple – use LDAP search string instead! In ADUC define new query with custom search for:


    where 0112 is what you’re looking for (or computer name contains)

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