Unable to launch add on in IE

Ones of my clients ran into an issue. I had to remote into their PC to apply a fix. I always recommend using Internet Explorer but the browser was not allowing me to setup a Webex session. Webex was running on a client PC as it was getting an error message that the add on was closed since it could be a security risk.  I know and trust the add on so this left me wondering:  How do I allow a (personally) trusted add on to run when IE is (rightly) warning about possible security concerns.

This seems to be a known issue in older versions of IE.

The fix is pretty simple. Here is my summary

Problem: Unable to launch add-ons that are known to be okay (if you are unsure about the integrity of the add on you may seriously want to consider not following these steps)

Resolution:

Open IE
Navigate to “Tools (or the gear symbol on recent IE versions)”, “Internet Options” then “Advanced”
Here you will have to scroll all the way down the list to the “Security” section and locate an entry entitled:
“Enable memory protection to help mitigate online attacks”
This entry will most likely be checked – go ahead and uncheck it (again: if you are unsure about the integrity of the add on you may seriously want to consider not following these steps)
Reload IE ( not really needed in my testing but it is always best practice)

And enjoy your now functional add-on

Love, peace and chicken grease!

Upgrading server OS versions

One of my clients bought a server that was supposed to be the last box they would ever need. Of course, in IT, this is never the case and this one reached its limit when they needed another VM and the existing OS did not support any additional VMs.  So we had to upgrade.  Supposed to be easy right? In theory it is (the difference between theory and practice: In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice, there is) but I was not so fortunate that day.  Luckly one of my colleagues Jamie Belair was there with some wicked Google-fu and managed to find the answer for me.  So here is what happened and what we did.  We were trying to upgrade from Server 2008r2 Standard to Server 2008r2 Datacenter.

I used the commands from my previous post to check the verisons and it was supposed to just work:
http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windowsserver/en-US/508bc1c1-bd02-4d30-bb55-ffa6e6b6d37a/dism-error-attempting-to-run-online-upgrade-from-windows-server-2008-r2-enterprise-to-datacenter?forum=winserversetup

What we ended up needing to do was install a specific KMS key:
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff793421.aspx

and then switch the key to a MAK key (which we already had purchased)

So in summary we were not able to upgrade to the MAK key without first going to a KMS key…

Get ‘er done!

Windows upgrade options via script

So you want to upgrade your OS.  You have no idea if the particular one that came shipped with your PC allows it or not.  All the articles online say it can work but how can you tell?  Easy peasy lemon squeeze!

Open an elevated command prompt and type:

dism /online /get-targeteditions

Now, just to be clear, there are two “gotchas” here

First, if you do not have the /online switch the command will fail. DISM needs to know what .wim file to look at.  The /online options tells it to use the one currently in use and not a different one.  If you want to point to an offline image just the /image: <path to file> command instead

Second, there is an “s” at the end. The flip side of this coin is finding out what the current version is and that command has no “s” at the end: dism /online /get-currentedition.  So if you live by copy/paste or command history (like this guy) that little character is needed to make the command valid – took me a few frantic minutes to realize why my carefully written command was suddenly not working!

Keep your stick on the ice!