Installing Service Pack 1 for Windows 2008 R2 by MDT 2010 U1 mechanizm

Today post is about why sometimes using manual can harm your things.
It is normal, that if you doesn’t know how invoke application in other way than simple double click on exe file, you call the command line
aplikacja.exe /? or aplikacja.exe /help
In the response we obtain in any form some information about command line switches handled by this program. Especially, we can obtain in this way information about advanced method of calling standalone windows operating system updates.
The Windows 2008 R2 Service Pack 1 installator responses with following:
Dialog window with help for Windows 2008 R2 Service Pack 1
For import process to Microsoft Deployment Toolkit, you have to unpack in any way the exe file to the Windows Standalone Update (msu or cab) files form. On the screen there is no such option.
But after several unsucessful tries I figured out that this command line:

 windows6.1-KB976932-X64.exe /extract

fires up exactly this extraction process without any error message. First simptom of right execution was dialog window with directory tree for choosing proper location for extracted files. There is also the cab file, what is necessary for update usage with MDT 2010 U1.

I am only curious, why Microsoft doesn’t add it to the help screen.


nmap – tool which is lacking in Windows

Nmap is one of the most intesively used by linux admins tools. It is widely known one can check out TCP port’s state on given hosts. As far as now, I was unable to find correctly working replacement for windows. Of course, there are many of migration’s attempts based on CygWin or SFU/SUA, but they require wider permissions in contrast to those that users usually have on their machines.
That is why I want to introduce you to real Microsoft replacement of this tool: PORTQRY. This tool is as usable as nmap and I can recomend it for use in every Windows Enviroments. It has one more important advantage in comparition to nmap. It can follow dynamic RPC ports used by DCOM. RPC and DCOM are heavily used by most of Windows enviroment services such as Active Directory, Certificates Service or Exchange. These are only examples of usage this technology.
Finally I wish everyone as little as possible time with network time down in yours enviroments.


Xcopy – “insufficient memory”

Popular copy commad do (for the first look) the same with one difference. It can’t handle copying recursive directories. For resolving this issue, microsoft has released newer version of this tool called Xcopy (eXtended Copy). The new one is present in Windows up to today and helps me in situation, which looks as hopeless (for example when the GUI copy methods fail). It has one serious issue. It raises error cited in post title. It is reported when copied file has absolute path (including the drive letter) longer than 254 characters. Because novadays file systems handles longer path, this factitiously small issue comes to really hard problem.
Solution is, of course, find an alternative tool what will have similar syntax. First shot was xxcopy what behaves similars, not exactly the same way. This one has failings too. Most important of them is fact that it requires license for some important features. Closer info can be obtained from program home site.

Tool what I suggest to all (happy ;-) ) Windows 7 Users and (not) happy users of Windows Vista is Robocopy. It is available for users of those systems as buildin one. Others can obtain it as part of resource kit. This tool, what name is derivied from “Robust File Copy”, is really powerfull during manipulation with huge number of files. Good description of it can be found in Wikipedia.