Install Windows Updates using PowerShell

In this post I showed you how you can use PowerShell to install Windows Updates. Quickly and silently. This makes the use of PSWindowsUpdate module perfect for your day to day automation. The module even supports scheduling (on remote computers too!), it has the ability to search WSUS and Windows Update for updates, scheduling and performing the download and installation of updates.

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PowerShell 5.0

Emulate ternary operator in PowerShell

Emulate ternary or conditional operator in PowerShell 5. It takes three operands: a condition followed by a question mark (?), then an expression to execute if the condition is truthy followed by a colon (:), and finally the expression to execute if the condition is falsy. This operator is frequently used as an alternative to an if…else statement.

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WSUS Application Pool IIS Advanced Settings

WsusPool keeps crashing: stops again and again

Sometimes you find your WSUS server keeps crashing over and over again. The WSUS application pool periodically stops, WSUS is unavailable and/or the WSUS management console hangs. When you start to investigate as to why Windows Server Update Services crashes, you notice the error messagesbeing logged in the HTTPErr log files. In the Eventlog you might find errors indicating that the WSUS administration console is unable to connect to WSUS Server via remote API. Sometimes clients checking for Windows Updates would quickly error out with a code 0x80244021, which indicates the inability to reach WSUS. Here is how to improve Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) availability.

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Generate pseudo-random passwords with OpenSSL

Generate a random password using OpenSSL. OpenSSL comes in handy when you need to generate pseudorandom strings, for example to be used for passwords. In this short post I’ll give you a quick example on how to generate random passwords with OpenSSL in Linux (Bash), Windows and PHP, perfect for use with for system accounts and services accounts.

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SSH port forwarding in PuTTY

Tunnel RDP through SSH & PuTTY

How to tunnel Remote Desktop (RDP) over SSH with PuTTY. Have you ever been in a situation where you needed to perform remote administration on a Windows Server, and the RDP port 3389 is blocked on a firewall? Did you know you can tunnel RDP over SSH with PuTTY? This particularly comes in handy when there is no VPN available to the remote network… Here is how to set up a RDP SSH tunnel with PuTTY.

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Deploy Software through WDS

Software deployment through WDS

In my environment, I had to set up a new Windows Deployment Services (WDS) configuration for Windows 8.1 Enterprise. To roll out in our office (some 20+ workstations). I wanted to install some additional software at the same time, without using Microsoft Deployment Workbench (using FirstLogonCommands), because I find the interface too slow. The solution? Read on…

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