One of the many cool things about Microsoft Intune is the granular configuration of Windows 10 devices using the native functions available us today. In this little post we will look at just how easy is it to create a corporate Windows 10 layout and publish to all of your client desktops automatically.
The general prerequisites for this feature is that your Windows 10 desktops are synchronized and present in Azure Active Directory.
Export the Start Layout
When you have the Start screen layout that you want your users to see, use the Export-StartLayout cmdlet in Windows PowerShell to export the Start screen to an .xml file.
From Start, open Windows PowerShell.
At the Windows PowerShell command prompt, enter the following command:
Once you have an exported Start Layout you can use the XML file to apply this start layout to your entire organization using Microsoft Intune. Browse to your Intune Portal and go to Device Configuration –> Profile
Hopefully you may already have a Windows 10 – Device Restriction Profile.
If not, dont worry you will just have to create a new profile for Windows 10 and Device Restrictions.
Once in the profile properties, go to Settings and look for “Start” as at this point you can upload your Windows 10 start menu layout. If you may chose you will also be able to affect the look of the start menu by blocking or hide elements on the menu. For example you can block Fast Switching and hide File Explorer from the Start.
Once you have saved your configured and your Windows 10 device has checked in, it will receive your new and improved Start Menu
As the power of Microsoft Intune grows with great force, in this blog post we are going to look at how to install Google Chrome and manage via Microsoft Intune. I have been recently looking how to leverage Microsoft Intune for more than just Microsoft based tooling and Google Chrome can be installed and managed for Windows 10 desktop estate.
Sometimes a GUI just isnt enough and PowerShell wins overall..
I have been recently scripting the creation of several Windows 10 Local Users accounts and assigning them to Local Groups but discovered some machines didn’t have the New-LocalUser cmdlet available. Which is very annoying so in order to get around this issue I have created the following if statement to check if the module exists and install if required.
Back in September 2018, Microsoft announced it would be removing OneNote from its Office installation and OneNote for Windows 10 will be the default going forward. Microsoft has now announced (12th Feb) that OneNote 2016 will be removed from the Office Portal for installation using Semi-Annual channel.
So all installations from this post forward will not include OneNote 2016 by default when a user on the Semi-Annual channel using Office 365 on Windows 10 from the Office Portal.
So what now?
OneNote is available to download from the following url it is important to note that Microsoft are no longer developing new features for OneNote 2016. If you want to take advantage of the latest that OneNote has to offer, Microsoft state you should consider switching to OneNote for Windows 10
Microsoft announced in April 2017 that they be ceasing support for legacy Office clients into Office 365 services, however this stance has now changed based on customer feedback to Microsoft
Office 2013 and below will cease as expected on 13th October 2020
Office 2016 will now be extended until October 2023
With this announcement it also includes a number of changes to the supported operating system versions of Windows.
Office 365 ProPlus delivers cloud-connected and always up-to-date versions of the Office desktop apps. To support customers already on Office 365 ProPlus through their operating system transitions, we are updating the Windows system requirements for Office 365 ProPlus and revising some announcements that were made in February. We are pleased to announce the following updates to our Office 365 ProPlus system requirements:
Office 365 ProPlus will continue to be supported on Windows 8.1 through January 2023, which is the end of support date for Windows 8.1.
Office 365 ProPlus will also continue to be supported on Windows Server 2016 until October 2025.
Office 365 Pro Plus will also continue to be supported on Windows 7 (ESU) Extended Security Updates through Janaury 2023. Windows 7 ESU will only be available for Windows 7 Pro/Enterprise customers with Volume Licensing.
Other big news is four changes Microsoft have also announced (Longer support windows for Windows 10):
All currently supported feature updates of Windows 10 Enterprise and Education editions (versions 1607, 1703, 1709, and 1803) will be supported for 30 months from their original release date. This will give customers on those versions more time for change management as they move to a faster update cycle.
All future feature updates of Windows 10 Enterprise and Education editions with a targeted release month of September (starting with 1809) will be supported for 30 months from their release date. This will give customers with longer deployment cycles the time they need to plan, test, and deploy.
All future feature updates of Windows 10 Enterprise and Education editions with a targeted release month of March (starting with 1903) will continue to be supported for 18 months from their release date. This maintains the semi-annual update cadence as our north star and retains the option for customers that want to update twice a year.
All feature releases of Windows 10 Home, Windows 10 Pro, and Office 365 ProPlus will continue to be supported for 18 months (this applies to feature updates targeting both March and September).
In summary, our new modern desktop support policies—starting in September 2018—are:
In this post, we will look at a known bug within the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update 1709, where you are unable to perform a sysprep of a Windows 10 workstation running update 1709. This is a little annoying bug which prevents sysprep from running.
The error messages as shown below provides you with a bit of detail and a UNC Folder to check the log file for more information. Sysprep was not able to validate your Windows installation.
Review the log file at:
%WINDIR%\Systems32\Sysprep\Panther\setupact.log for details. After resolving this issue, use sysprep to valiate your installation again.
This error seems to be caused by Windows 10 Store Apps updating within the background, we can prevent this from happening by adding the following reg key either by using regedit or Powershell. As I am a big avodate of PowerShell I will using show the deployment and removal of this key using PowerShell.
Identifiying the Windows 10 Applications.
Using the path provided within the sysprep error message you will be able to easily identify the problem application, this is case the problem was being caused by the SketchBook application. Once removing SketchBook app the problem persisted as a number of other apps needs to be removed also.
You can find a video of each application being removed until sysprep was able to successfully execute.