Windows Server 2008 R2 update to SP1 troubles (surely with DPM)

By YellowOnline on Tuesday 24 July 2012 14:59 - Comments (2)
Category: Windows, Views: 6.809

I had a problem with some server that didn't want to update to SP1. The internet is full of possible solution but none seemed to be working for me. Log files of all kind did not show any error at all, not even with verbose logging of the Windows Installer (through a registry hack Microsoft sometimes uses when troubleshooting).

It took me a week of troubleshooting before I opened a ticket with Microsoft. It took another week of troubleshooting with Microsoft to find the solution. As this solution is hidden in a post on the DPM fora of MSDN that doesn't easily turn up when searching the internet, I happily blog about it as my posts seem to be very well indexed by Google.

This solution is in a thread about DPM, and I too had the problem in DPM - because SP1 verifies all snapshots and DPM usually has a lot of volumes and, accordingly, a lot of snapshots. Still, it might be a solution for other people too if the symptoms are alike.

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Creating Excel files with PowerShell

By YellowOnline on Wednesday 18 July 2012 15:12 - Comments (17)
Category: Powershell, Views: 22.999

There's no fun in exporting to plain TXT or CSV. Even exporting to HTML or XML doesn't create a nice report. They can all show data, yes, but not in a fancy way.

Managers like their data in a fancy way. Most products have build-in reporting tools, but even then sometimes they cannot achieve what you exactly have in mind.

There is one application out there that can be abused for all your reporting needs: Microsoft Excel (yes, and perhaps its OpenOffice equivalent too, but I don't know about that). Powershell can control Excel perfectly; and because it is a shell, you can build-up your Excel sheet visibly from the shell. Fun!

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