Category

Group Policy

Anything New in Group Policy for Windows 8.1 Update One?

New Group Policy settings in Windows 8.1 Update 1

Last week, Microsoft shipped to MSDN subscribers, the bits for the first update to Windows 8.1. Regular users of 8.1 will get the update starting today, through Windows Update. A natural question would be, did Microsoft make any outwardly visible improvements or changes to Group Policy in this new release? The answer is, surprisingly (or not surprisingly :-)) little seems to have changed. A…

Circumventing IE Proxy Policy with…Charms!

Changing Proxy Settings through the Charms Menu

An astute reader of this blog brought an interesting scenario to my attention, and I spent some time confirming it. For those of you running Windows 8 (or 8.1) there’s a neat “feature” that allows your users to circumvent controls you put in place for controlling proxy server settings in Internet Explorer.

Here’s the scenario. I use GP Preferences to configure a proxy address for my Windows…

Override the Group Policy ADMX Central Store

Overriding the Central Store

Ever since Microsoft introduced the Central Store — a folder in SYSVOL where you can centrally keep all of your ADMX and ADML template files for Group Policy management — you’ve had to make all or nothing decisions about which ADMX files you could use for GP editing within your domain. If the Central Store existed, all GP editor clients would look for and find ADMX files there, without…

Script Group Policy Changes With The New Version of Group Policy Automation Engine!

Script Group Policy Changes with GPAE

Hey PowerShell and Group Policy Fans!

If you want to script group policy changes, life just got easier! I’m pleased to announce that today we shipped a major upgrade to our GP Automation Engine product–version 3.0. For those of you who don’t know what the GPAE is all about, a little background:

Back in 2007, the GPAE was the 2nd product SDM Software shipped. It was and still is the only…

Warning!!!–Group Policy Logon Scripts Delays in Windows 8.1

Configuring Logon Script Delay Behavior

Last month, I wrote an article on the Petri.co.il website, reviewing the new features around Group Policy in Windows 8.1. Buried in that list of new stuff was a feature that was perhaps a little unheralded and under-advertised, but one that may cause administrators a world of hurt if they are not expecting it. Specifically, I’m referring to the change in Group Policy-based logon script behavior…

GP Preferences for Internet Explorer 11

With IE 11 now generally available for Windows 7 and newer versions, the obvious question is, how do I manage IE 11 configuration using Group Policy? Of course, now that IE Maintenance Policy has been deprecated, your choices for managing IE using GP include either the Admin Template settings (inetres.admx) that come with the version of IE you need to manage, or GP Preferences Internet…

Renaming GPOs with PowerShell

Commenting a GPO

Recently, as part of one of our Group Policy consulting engagements, we recommended to a customer to adopt a consistent GPO naming standard. This kind of standard makes the function and purpose of a GPO more clear and eases discovery of a Group Policy environment. As a result of this recommendation, we needed to rename a fairly large number of GPOs. Doing it by hand, in GPMC, of course, is on…

More on Group Policy Caching in Windows 8.1

A while back I wrote a post describing the new Group Policy caching feature in Windows 8.1. As I mentioned in the post, this feature was designed to speed up GP processing when “synchronous” foreground policy processing was occurring. Synchronous foreground processing, prior to Windows 8.1, happened during one of a few different scenarios:

1. The first time a new user logs in to a machin…

Converting Group Policy Settings to Desired State Configuration Documents

If you’ve been following my blog, you know I’ve become a big fan of the new Desired State Configuration feature in Windows Management Framework 4 (i.e. PowerShell 4). It makes configuring Windows Servers a snap and provides a whole new set of configuration flexibility, above and beyond what you can get from Group Policy today. One of the exercises I’ve been working on recently is how to …

Group Policy vs. Desired State Configuration vs. …

If you haven’t read my most recent post on Desired State Configuration (DSC)–the new feature coming with the Windows Management Framework v4 (i.e. PowerShell v4, which will ship in the box in Windows 8.1 and Windows Server 2012-R2)  then I encourage you to check it out. Ever since DSC became public, there’s been a lot of buzz about it being the “killer feature” in the next version of Windows…

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