Joining Microsoft

Picture of the author in front of the Microsoft Logo sign in Redmond Washington on the microsoft campus

I have really loved these last three years with #BigBank #SpoilersItWasWellsFargoAllAlong and made some great friends and had some awesome experiences creating and sharing sessions at MMS with my friends I made along the way.

My career for the last ten years has been focused on automating, deploying, and managing Microsoft technologies. And now now, I’m going to get a chance to help work on them as well!

Starting May 18th, I am happily joining Microsoft’s Azure Compute team as a Developer. I’ll be remaining in Atlanta, and working from home for the foreseeable future.

What to Expect

This blog has always been a place for me to show you how I do it and I will continue to do the same thing, with my own same flavor and perspective. All thoughts and perspectives will be my own and will not be my employers.

I’ll update this blog in the coming weeks when I have tips to share about what I’ve been working on, or as post ideas strike me!

Progressive Automation Pt II – PowerShell GUIs

In our previous post in the series, we took a manual task and converted it into a script, but our users could only interface with it by ugly manual manipulation of a spreadsheet. And, while I think sheetOps (configuring and managing a Kubernetes cluster with a GoogleSheets doc!) are pretty cool we can probably do better.

So in this post, I’ll show how I would typically go about building a PowerShell WPF GUI from an existing automation that kind of works OK.

Continue reading

Quick Guide – Setting up Remote Management of your child’s PC

MANAGING YOUR

With everyone working remote now, it’s really helpful to have a method to remote control your kid’s computers, especially if they are hard to keep on task like mine.

So I wrote this short guide to help you get a handle. This guide expects you to have two computers, one for you, one for your kids to use.

Whoa I need a computer for the kids?

This guide is only going to cover PCs, not tablets.  Sorry.

If you need to buy one, this is what I’m now recommending.  Walmart has a new in-store brand of computers which is surprisingly great for the money, called their Motile line. It can do light to moderate gaming like Minecraft and Fortnite, and also handle video editing if you’ve got a budding YouTuber, as well as programming. And the best point? It’s user upgradable so you can add more RAM or get a bigger hard drive down the road.

walmartMotile

Motile 14″ AMD Laptop with Radeon 3 Graphics, 128 GB SSD and 4GB RAM

Linus Tech Tips did a great and funny video on this laptop too if you’re interested. 

/\ The above are not my affiliate links.

Note: a word about Remote Management

This method will setup Remote Viewing and control of your child’s computer

It is imperative that you treat your children with maturity, allow them breaks and make sure they know you can remote into their PC.

You don’t want to be stuck at home with kids who feel you’ve abused their trust by spying on them.  Only use these powers for good.

If you disagree with this, I don’t care so please keep that perspective to yourself. Continue reading

YouTube Video Metadata Scraping with PowerShell

Trigger Warning : I discuss eating disorders and my opinions pro-eating disorder media briefly in this post. If this content is difficult for some, I recommend scrolling past The Background and resuming at The Project instead.

Background

I ❤ YouTube. I have learned so much about development from folks like I am Tim Curry, or from the amazing Microsoft Virtual Academy courses from Jeffrey Snover and Jason Helmick (original link ).

Most days I catch the repeats from Stephen Colbert, and then jam out to synthwave or chillhop. In fact, I listened to one particular mix so many times while learning c# that I still get flashbacks when I hear the songs on it again…sleepness nights trying to uncover everything I don’t know. I even have my own Intro to PowerShell Video that I think my mom watched 70,000 times.

My kids grew up singing songs from Dave and Eva, Little Baby Bum, Super Simple Songs and now Rachel and the TreeSchoolers, and it was one of the first services I signed up for and still pay for today (aside from NetFlix, and that one stint where I got CDs through the mail, yeah…)

But a few months ago I heard that YouTube will recommend videos which are pro eating-restriction and bulimia within four videos of the sorts of content targeted at young children. I have a history with people who experience these disorders and want to be sure we face it head on in my family, but that doesn’t mean I will allow impressionable minds to be exposed to content which presents this issue in a positive light.

If YouTube is not going to be safe for the type of stuff my children want to watch, I needed to know.  Unfortunately the person who told me of this can not remember their source, nor could I find any decent articles on the topic, but I thought that this smelled like a project in the making. Continue reading

ConfigMgr Tech Preview Install Guide

Hey all,
After seeing Adam Gross’ very interesting content on CM TechPreview’s new AdminService feature, I immediately started to wonder how I could go about using it in place of remote WMI Operations.
So I connected to my stale Tech Preview Environment (it was TP 1806, lol!) and found it had expired 😢.
After googling for 14 seconds, I found no one had made a completely slap-dash guide to deploying the current version of CM Tech preview complete with all of the links you’ll need, so I decided to do that here.
note: I am assuming you’ve installed ConfigMgr **a lot of times** before this, so I won’t go too in-depth into what you need to do for each step.  Where relevant I provide a link to a post with the exact step you need to do, in case you’re not sure.

Have an AD domain

You must have a domain to setup ConfigMgr.  Womp womp.  If you need a domain controller, make a new Server 2019 VM and follow this blog post for a one-click domain controller install.

Make a Service Account

You don’t want to be stuck doing this when you get to the SQL Install step so do it now.  Make a new account and set it to never expire and give it limited perms.
Do not place it in Domain Admins or Enterprise Admins

Continue reading