Category Archives: Windows

Virtual machine customisation fails with error “A specified parameter was not correct. spec.identity.userData.computerName”.


Today I was testing some new Windows Server 2012 templates and noticed something rather odd. Basically my costomisations would cause the deployments from template to fail for no real reason. Error message that came up was:


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How to deploy Barracuda Malware Removal Tool aka Malwarebytes?


In previous parts of my deployment how to’s I talked about deploying 7-Zip 9.20 and VLC Media Player 2.0.4 so if you haven’t seen that yet go and check it out.

In today’s post I wanted to share my deployment scripts for Barracuda Malware Removal Tool also known as re-skinned version of Malwarebytes. Barracuda Malware Removal Tool is part of Barracuda Web Filter Vx family of appliances so its a really good idea to take advantage of the software and deploy it out in your organisation.

First script is the Install.bat script which takes care of:

  • Adding EventViewer entry at the start/end of the deployment
  • Removing previous versions of Barracuda Malware Removal Tool or Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware
  • Deploying Barracuda Malware Removal Tool 1.46 (change the .exe name as appropriate)
  • Silently updating database definitions
  • Note: You can push the script below to x86 as well as x64 architectures.

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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.

    Citrix XenApp 6.5 run discovery fails when using custom administrator role


    Another quick post to show one possible resolution for Run Discovery to fail when using custom administrator role on XenApp 6.5. Basically discovery fails with the following error:

    “This user account is not an administrator of this farm, or there was a problem contacting the data store. Check that the data store server for the Citrix XenApp farm is online, and verify that your account is configured and enabled as an administrator on the farm”

    Solution is to make sure you tick Log on to the Management Console under Permissions apart from any other custom settings you with to set:


    There you have it, sorted! 🙂

    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 Server 2008 R2 SP1 DNS Stops Resolving Names “Can’t find Server failed”


    I use Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 DNS to resolve my public names and precisely every two days I get “Can’t find Server failed” messages and the usual “Internet Explorer cannot display the webpage” nonsense. This only happens when using root hints and not forwarders and only for few selected top level domains ( being one of them) Here is what the situation looks like when the DNS server is broken:


    Ping returns “Ping request could not find host Please check the name and try again” and nslookup throws error in title. Pretty annoying and so far the fix was to simply bounce the dns service – not elegant in any shape or form but highly successful!
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