CSI Windows News
VBScript UAC Prompting Kit Print E-mail
CSI Toolkit
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Wednesday, April 21, 2010 1:31pm

The VBScriptUACkit consists of a group of VBScript procedures that allow a script to check whether it is running with full admin rights and to relaunch elevated if needed.

It is able to check whether a user is a protected admin (unelevated admin) so that it can prompt only if admin permissions can be given.  This allows a better user experience and it allows proper status reporting, rather than script failures.

 
Application Compatibility Training is Live! Print E-mail
Training Updates and Additions
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Tuesday, April 20, 2010 7:41pm

Our application compatiblity toolkit training is scheduled for July 12th!

This course focuses on Compatibility Administrator for shimming applications - it does not cover the inventory tools in the Application Compatibility Toolkit.

Check out the schedule and course description.

 
Windows Update - Large AppCompat Update KB976264 Print E-mail
General
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Thursday, April 8, 2010 1:36pm

Microsoft has released a Windows Update that contains a large number of fixes for Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows Server.  This is the second release of this package, so if you previously applied it, you may need to apply it again.

 
CSI_IsSession: VBScript Function to Discover Almost Anything About Your Current Login Session Print E-mail
CSI Toolkit
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Monday, April 5, 2010 2:00am

Last year I wrote the VBScript Function “IfUserPerms” to enable scripts to determine if the current user/session was a protected administrator (an administrator capable of elevating, but who is currently not elevated). It worked reasonably well, but had a few warts that needed clipping for its re-release with the upcoming CSI-Windows.com VBScript UAC Kit…

 
Unnecessary Roadblocks in the Windows Software Logo Program Print E-mail
General
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Wednesday, March 31, 2010 1:51pm

Microsoft is running a survey about the Windows Software Logo Program to find out how it can be improved.  For Windows 7 the program was streamlined for developers to make it easier for them to get on board.  There is, however, one area that remains challenging for smaller development shops - you know, precisely the one's that IT admins would love to have focused on building platform compliant software?  You can help by showing your vote...

 
CSI-Windows Debugging Checklist Mousepad for Previous Students of DesktopEngineer.com Print E-mail
General
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Wednesday, March 31, 2010 2:00am

If you've ever taken a class from DesktopEngineer.com or CSI-Windows.com and did not receive one of our cool Debugging Checklist mousepads, drop us a line to get yours. See below for a graphic of what it looks like.

 
Fixing Windows Installer Error 2738 Print E-mail
General
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Monday, March 29, 2010 2:00am

Error 2738 is “Could not access VBScript run time for custom action .  You can quickly find out that you need to register vbscript.dll, but there is a nasty gotcha if you are too quick on the draw.  64-bit Windows also requires special care.

 
4/5/2010: TRK-55 Windows 7 App. Internals & Packaging Jumpstart Print E-mail
General
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Tuesday, March 23, 2010 7:25am

We still have seats available in our April 5th delivery of TRK-55 Windows 7 App. Internals & Packaging Jumpstart.

 

 
Installing MSI Packages with Bad Custom Actions on Windows 7 Print E-mail
General
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Tuesday, March 23, 2010 1:16am

Even with all of Microsoft’s concerted efforts to get older MSI packages to run on Windows 7, there are still some challenging ones.  When these occur during the UI sequence of the package, there are several things you can try to get the package to install.

 
Two New Consulting Offerings Print E-mail
General
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Monday, March 22, 2010 8:45pm

We are adding two new consulting services to our offerings on CSI-Windows.com.  The first one is micro-service offering called "Windows 7 Application Compatibility Shimming" - it is designed to help Administrators or Developers get a troublesome application working on Windows 7.  It is a fixed price and you only pay if the application can be made to run.  The second one is called "Corporate Deployability Assessment for Commercial Software MSI Packages"  It is designed for Software Developers to help them make sure their software package is easy to deploy.  The Windows 7 Logo has no setup program requirements - so even the most compatible software application can be difficult to deploy.

 
How To Extract a Single File From a Large MSI (4 Ways) Print E-mail
General
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Thursday, March 18, 2010 7:25pm

There may be times when you need a file or two out of a Microsoft SDK or other large distribution. It can be a painful process to install an entire SDK or toolkit to obtain a single file, so we’ve documented some better ways.

 
UPDATED: bginfo template 1.6 Print E-mail
CSI Toolkit
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Wednesday, March 17, 2010 2:00am

Our Bginfo template has been updated to version 1.6.  It has been updated to accurately report whether the OS is 32 bit or 64 bit and whether the Hardware is 32 Bit or 64 Bit.

 
Norton Installs Itself Like Malware and Then Asks Me “How Safe Is Your Computer?” Print E-mail
General
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Wednesday, February 3, 2010 4:24pm

Quite amazing.  After I was away from my computer for a couple hours I came back to the below dialog window (Figure 1) asking me “How safe is your computer?”  Regardless of how safe my computer is or isn’t, I wouldn’t expect this from a company trying to get my security business back.  So I set about reverse engineering how it got there…

 
UPDATED: CSI_IsAdmin: Test for Admin Rights - Fast, Small, Efficient, Universal Script Code in VBScript (VBS), PowerShell (PS1) and CMD/BAT Print E-mail
CSI Toolkit
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Tuesday, January 26, 2010 1:20pm

This script code uses a fast and efficient method for determining whether the current session (process) has admin rights.  The compact code is provided in VBS (9 lines) and CMD/BAT (3 lines).  It works with XP / Server 2003 through Windows 7 / Server 2008.  It works with UAC (reports admin rights only if session / process elevated).  It uses passive methods to determine rights – in other words, it does not try to change anything on the target system.

 
UPDATED: bginfo template 1.5 Print E-mail
CSI Toolkit
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Wednesday, December 2, 2009 4:39pm

Our Bginfo template has been updated to version 1.5.  The template content is the same, but the installer now handles XP, checking for a copy of bginfo.exe next to script, checking for elevated admin on Vista and later (Version 6 and later).  You can use the installer script to see a simple Shell (.BAT, .CMD) scripting method to check if someone is an elevated admin...

 
Malware Scanners Missing Stuff – Procmon Install Spy To The Rescue… Print E-mail
CSI Toolkit
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Monday, November 23, 2009 12:06pm

I had two different scenarios in two days where some of the top malware scanners completely ignored very concerning changes to systems I was working on…

 
How Do I UAC Prompt Thee? Let Me Count The Ways. (The Definitive UAC Prompt Guide) Print E-mail
CSI Toolkit
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Thursday, November 12, 2009 1:18pm

UAC has caused a lot of buzz ever since Vista was released. Sometimes even I wonder if the topic of UAC comprises a measurable amount of the total web and email conversations about technology for the last two years ;)

The main concern about UAC has always been those pesky prompts asking your permission to do innocuous activities like deleting kernel32.dll. Sometimes you get them when you don’t want them and sometimes you don’t get them when you should. It turns out there are many ways to cause or suppress UAC prompts – this post attempts to document them all…

 
Sample Template Application Manifest [Updated] Print E-mail
CSI Toolkit
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Wednesday, November 11, 2009 1:21pm

If you are just getting started with using manifest files to configure UAC elevation prompts, it can be difficult to remember what the options are and what to do if there is already a manifest. The following is a complete sample template of an application manifest and is commented so that you can…

 
Single Click Screenshot to Email Print E-mail
General
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Thursday, September 3, 2009 12:17pm

The other day I received an email about an error a user was experiencing, I wanted to see a screen shot and started to write an email detailing the steps required to capture and email me a screenshot when I suddenly realized “Wow, for how helpful screenshots are, this is sure an overly complex process”.  Some Googling turned up just what I was looking for and it is free and does not require installation …

 

 
Russinovich on Windows 7 User Account Control (UAC) Print E-mail
General
Written by Darwin Sanoy   
Tuesday, September 1, 2009 1:07pm

Mark Russinovich has authored a Technet article on the changes to UAC for the Windows 7 release…

 
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