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Archive for the 'Powershell' Category

BriForum rocked!

As I am sitting here on my way back to NJ from BrForum I am thinking about the week. All I can say is awesome. The content was only matched by the company. People often underestimate the value in conferences and often it is not the actual sessions. In the case of BriForum there is significant value in both. If you have never been to BriForum and you are in the SBC (server based computing) world you are missing out.

p.s. @ShawnBass, @JasonConger, @LauraWhalen, @JimMoyle. You guys rock and I had an absolute blast.

PowerScripting Podcast… Tonight!

Going to be a guest tonight on the PowerScripting pod cast. You can catch it live via the website or listen later.

How to find extended rights that apply to a schema class object (remix)

The AD guys posted a really cool post about getting extended rights via the schema. That post can be found here:
How to find extended rights that apply to a schema class object

If you dont have Windows 7, 2008 R2, or the Active Directory Management Gateway then you can get similar results by using my functions from here: Getting AD Schema information from Powershell. This works on all versions of AD.

Using these functions you can just do this:

Get-ADSchemaClass group | %{$_.DefaultObjectSecurityDescriptor} | %{$_.access} | ?{$_.ActiveDirectoryRights -eq "ExtendedRight"}

XenApp cmdlets are HERE!!!

This is still a CTP of sorts, but it is open to the public. These are high quality and I suggest you give them a try.

You can download here: XenApp cmdlets

I hope to have some demos up soon, but until then my old demos should still work.

Setting SNMP configuration in VMWare using Powershell

I have a ton of respect for the VMWare guys and the incredibly useful set of cmdlets they provide (FOR FREE) found HERE, but man have I been banging my head against the wall trying to simply set the SNMP configuration on my ESX hosts.

To help ease the pain for the REST of the world here are some thoughts/gotchas.

– You must have the object return from Get-VMHostSNMP to use Set-VMHostSNMP or Test-VMHostSNMP. Simply providing the name will not work
– You cannot use the name with Get-VMHostSNMP. It appears you must connect to the actual ESX host (using connect-viserver) and then run Get-VMHostSNMP
– Once you “get” the VMHostSNMP object you can reuse without worrying about the connect-viserver command.
– You need to add a ReadOnlyCommunity to each host
– You need to Enable traps with the -enable:$true parameter
– TargetCommunity, TargetPort, TargetHost parameters require that you also pass -addtarget
– You need to enable SNMP on the ESX firewall

You may find the script below useful for getting a VMHostSNMP object for each ESXHost on your Virtual Center

Using the script below you can then do things like
$SNMPHostObjects = .\Get-SNMPHost.ps1 $VirtualCenter

To Add a Community
$SNMPHostObjects | %{ Set-VMHostSnmp -HostSnmp $_ -ReadOnlyCommunity “YourCommunity”}

To Enable
$SNMPHostObjects | %{ Set-VMHostSnmp -HostSnmp $_ -Enabled:$true }

To Add a Target
$SNMPHostObjects | %{ Set-VMHostSnmp -HostSnmp $_ -TargetHost “” -TargetCommunity “YourCommunity” -AddTarget }

To Test
$SNMPHostObjects | %{ Test-VMHostSnmp $_ }

To Remove a Target
$SNMPHostObjects | %{ Set-VMHostSnmp -HostSnmp $_ -TargetHost “” -removeTarget}

Testing AD LDS (ADAM) replication with Powershell

Earlier this month I had a discussion with Laura (of AD Cookbook fame) regarding ADLDS and how to test convergence. After a few minutes I remembered I had a AD convergence script I wrote a while back found HERE. With a little tweaking (specifically discoverability) we converted it to test ADLDS as well. Below you will fine the result.

Server: The ADLDS/ADAM server that hosts the application partition you want to test
DN: The distinguished name of the application partition you want to test (will try to discover)
Port: Port ADLDS/ADAM list on (Default 389)
Table [switch]: A switch that outputs an object with the results.

Note: Please feel free to provide any feedback you have regarding this. I do not use ADLDS or ADAM so other than my test environment I really cannot play with this.

The Code


Param($Server = $Env:ComputerName,
      $Port = "389",

function Ping-Server {
   $pingresult = Get-WmiObject win32_pingstatus -f "address=’$srv’ and Timeout=1000"
   if($pingresult.statuscode -eq 0) {$true} else {$false}

$DirectoryServer = "{0}:{1}" -f $Server,$Port

$Context = new-object System.DirectoryServices.ActiveDirectory.DirectoryContext("DirectoryServer",$DirectoryServer)
$ADAM = [System.DirectoryServices.ActiveDirectory.AdamInstance]::GetAdamInstance($context)

    $AppPartition = $ADAM.ConfigurationSet | %{$_.ApplicationPartitions} | Select-Object -first 1
    $DN = $AppPartition.Name
    $dclist = $AppPartition.DirectoryServers | ?{$_.HostName -notmatch $Server}
    $dclist = $ADAM.ConfigurationSet.AdamInstances | ?{($_.Partitions -contains $DN) -and ($_.HostName -notmatch $Server)}

    $DCTable = @()
    $myobj = "" | select Name,Time
    $myobj.Name = ("$Server [SOURCE]").ToUpper()
    $myobj.Time = 0.00
    $DCTable += $myobj

$timestamp = [datetime]::Now.ToFileTime().ToString()
Write-Host "`n  Modifying wwwHomePage Attribute on Object [$DN] on [$DirectoryServer] with value [$timestamp]"
$object = ([ADSI]"LDAP://$DirectoryServer/$DN")
$object.wWWHomePage = $timeStamp
$objectDN = $object.distinguishedname
Write-Host "  Object [$objectdn] Modified! `n"

$start = Get-Date

$i = 0

Write-Host "  Found [$($dclist.count)] LDS replicas"
$cont = $true

    $oldpos = $host.UI.RawUI.CursorPosition
    Write-Host "  =========== Check $i ===========" -fore white
    start-Sleep 1
    $replicated = $true
    foreach($dc in $dclist)
        if($server -match $dc.HostName){continue}
        if(ping-server $dc.HostName)
            $DCServer = "{0}:{1}" -f $dc.HostName,$dc.LdapPort
            $object = [ADSI]"LDAP://$DCServer/$dn"
            if($object.wwwHomePage -eq $timeStamp)
                Write-Host "  – $DCServer Has Object Description [$dn]" (" "*5) -fore Green
                if($table -and !($dctable | ?{$_.Name -match $dc.HostName}))
                    $myobj = "" | Select-Object Name,Time
                    $myobj.Name = $dc.HostName.ToUpper()
                    $myobj.Time = ("{0:n2}" -f ((Get-Date)$start).TotalSeconds)
                    $dctable += $myobj
            else{Write-Host "  ! $($dc.HostName.ToUpper()) Missing Object [$dn]" -fore Red;$replicated  = $false}
            Write-Host "  ! $($dc.HostName.ToUpper()) Failed PING" -fore Red
            if($table -and !($dctable | ?{$_.Name -match $dc}))
                $myobj = "" | Select-Object Name,Time
                $myobj.Name = $dc.HostName.ToUpper()
                $myobj.Time = "N/A"
                $dctable += $myobj
    if($replicated){$cont = $false}else{$host.UI.RawUI.CursorPosition = $oldpos}

$end = Get-Date
$duration = "{0:n2}" -f ($end.Subtract($start).TotalSeconds)
Write-Host "`n    Took $duration Seconds `n" -fore Yellow

if($table){$dctable | Sort-Object Time}

Functions for Active Directory Permissions

Below are some of the function I have written to work with Access Control List in Active Directory.

Here is the list and what they do
Get-ADACL: Gets the Access Control List of an AD Object
Set-ADACL: Set the Access Control List of an AD Object
New-ADACE: Creates a Access Control Entry to add to an AD Object
ConvertTo-Sid: Converts a UserName to a SID
ConvertTo-Name: Converts a SID to the UserName
Get-Self: Gets current Security Identity

function Get-ADACL {
    function HelpMe{
        Write-Host " Get-ADACL.ps1:" -fore Green
        Write-Host "   Gets ACL object or SDDL for AD Object"
        Write-Host " Parameters:" -fore Green
        Write-Host "   -DNPath                : Parameter: DN of Object"
        Write-Host "   -sddl                  : [SWITCH]:  Output SDDL instead of ACL Object"
        Write-Host "   -Verbose               : [SWITCH]:  Enables Verbose Output"
        Write-Host "   -Help                  : [SWITCH]:  Displays This"
        Write-Host " Examples:" -fore Green
        Write-Host "   Get ACL for ‘cn=users,dc=corp,dc=lab’" -fore White
        Write-Host "     .\Get-ADACL.ps1 ‘cn=users,dc=corp,dc=lab’" -fore Yellow
        Write-Host "   Get SDDL for ‘cn=users,dc=corp,dc=lab’" -fore White
        Write-Host "     .\Get-ADACL.ps1 ‘cn=users,dc=corp,dc=lab’ -sddl " -fore Yellow
    if(!$DNPath -or $help){HelpMe;return}
    Write-Verbose " + Processing Object [$DNPath]"
    $DE = [ADSI]"LDAP://$DNPath"
    Write-Verbose "   – Getting ACL"
    $acl = $DE.psbase.ObjectSecurity
        Write-Verbose "   – Returning SDDL"
        Write-Verbose "   – Returning ACL Object [System.DirectoryServices.ActiveDirectoryAccessRule]"
function Set-ADACL {
    function HelpMe{
        Write-Host " Set-ADACL.ps1:" -fore Green
        Write-Host "   Sets the AD Object ACL to ‘ACL Object’ or ‘SDDL’ String"
        Write-Host " Parameters:" -fore Green
        Write-Host "   -DNPath                : Parameter: DN of Object"
        Write-Host "   -ACL                   : Parameter: ACL Object"
        Write-Host "   -sddl                  : Parameter: SDDL String"
        Write-Host "   -Verbose               : [SWITCH]:  Enables Verbose Output"
        Write-Host "   -Help                  : [SWITCH]:  Displays This"
        Write-Host " Examples:" -fore Green
        Write-Host "   Set ACL on ‘cn=users,dc=corp,dc=lab’ using ACL Object" -fore White
        Write-Host "     .\Set-ADACL.ps1 ‘cn=users,dc=corp,dc=lab’ -ACL $acl" -fore Yellow
        Write-Host "   Set ACL on ‘cn=users,dc=corp,dc=lab’ using SDDL" -fore White
        Write-Host "     .\Set-ADACL.ps1 ‘cn=users,dc=corp,dc=lab’ -sddl `$mysddl" -fore Yellow
    if(!$DNPath -or (!$acl -and !$sddl) -or $help){HelpMe;Return}
    Write-Verbose " + Processing Object [$DNPath]"
    $DE = [ADSI]"LDAP://$DNPath"
        Write-Verbose "   – Setting ACL using SDDL [$sddl]"
        foreach($ace in $acl)
            Write-Verbose "   – Adding Permission [$($ace.ActiveDirectoryRights)] to [$($ace.IdentityReference)]"
function New-ADACE {
    $help = @"
        Object Type of the property
        The schema GUID of the object to which the access rule applies.
    $ACE = New-Object System.DirectoryServices.ActiveDirectoryAccessRule($identity,$adRights,$type,$guid)
function ConvertTo-Sid($UserName,$domain = $env:Computername) {
   $ID = New-Object System.Security.Principal.NTAccount($domain,$UserName)
   $SID = $ID.Translate([System.Security.Principal.SecurityIdentifier])
function ConvertTo-Name($sid) {
   $ID = New-Object System.Security.Principal.SecurityIdentifier($sid)
   $User = $ID.Translate( [System.Security.Principal.NTAccount])
function Get-Self{

New and Improved site coming! ( Well… at least new )

So please excuse the mess or occasional down links if that happens.

I plan on doing several upgrades
– Upgrading the Blog Engine
– Changing the look and feel
– Changing the RSS Feed to feed burner
– Getting better category control
– adding a blogroll

I dont expect little down time (if any.) I hope that this will not effect anyones feeds and I trust it will be better when I am done. If your feed for some reason stops… you can use the feed from feedburner… it should always work

Citrix and Powershell Webinar

For those of you that use Citrix Presentation Server you will want to watch this. I maybe a little bias, but I loved it 🙂

cmdlet Design Suggestion

I wanted to make a case for using task based cmdlets instead of methods when designing Snapins. There have been several “Vendors” that have produced cmdlets for Powershell: Exchange, Citrix, VMWare, and IBM to name a few. Most have done very well here, but this is one thing I think the VMware team excelled at.

< sidebar >
As some of you may know, I have a long background in Active Directory. As an Ex-Microsoft Support Professional in the Directory Services Team and later a Rapid Response Engineer specializing in Active Directory, let’s just say I have passion for all things AD.
I was lucky enough to spend a significant amount of time with the DS team at MS responsible for the Powershell cmdlets they will release at some time in the future. While I cannot give any details I can say… OMG! I CANNOT WAIT to be able to talk about them.
< / sidebar >

Here is the basic Goal

Get-Something | Filter | Change-Something | Change-SomethingElse | Save-Something

The thing to avoid: Depending on methods for object task.
Get-Something | %{$_.DoSomething()}

Here is an Example of what I mean
Lets say we have a Car Object (class). The Car object has Properties like Make, Model, Color, TireCount, Size, and Type.
We also have things we can do with a car like start , turn off, stop, turn, load, and unload.

We could approach this by creating a Car class with the set properties and methods. This may seem simpler, but it is not intuitive for your typical Admin. Your typical admin does not want to do this

Get-Car | ?{$_.Type -eq "MiniVan"} | %{$_.LoadPeople()} | %{$_.Start()} | %{$_.Turn("Right")} | %{$_.Stop()} | %{$_.UnLoadPeople()}

Ideally from an Admin perspective a bunch of Task oriented cmdlets would be your best bet. Let’s assume you had these cmdlets instead of Methods:

Your admin can now do this

Get-Car |  ?{$_.Type -eq "MiniVan"} | Invoke-LoadCar | Start-Car | Invoke-TurnCar -Right | Stop-Car | Invoke-UnloadCar

This reads more like a sentence than a script syntax.

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