Nano server changes

Nano server is the small, really small, footprint install version of Windows Server that was introduced with Server 2016.

it has a limited number of roles available to to install – much like the original version of  Server core.

Recent announcements –

indicates that Nano server is going to become even smaller (by more than 50%) and dedicated to delivering Containers. The infrastructure related roles will be removed. Nano Server will ONLY be available as a container base OS image

In addition, starting this Autumn, Nano server and  Server Core  will getting 2 feature updates per year.

Posted in Containers, Windows Server 2016 | 2 Comments

Deal of the Day – 15 June 2017

My book is Manning’s Deal of the Day June 15:

Half off Learn Hyper-V in a Month of Lunches. Use code dotd061517au at

Sign up for DoD notifications at

Posted in Books, Hyper-V, Powershell | Leave a comment

Find the logged on user

One method of finding the logged on users is to use CIM

$ComputerName = $env:COMPUTERNAME

Get-CimInstance -ClassName Win32_Process -ComputerName $ComputerName -Filter "Name = 'explorer.exe'" | 

 foreach {
    $lguser = Invoke-CimMethod -InputObject $psitem -MethodName GetOwner
    $Properties = @{
       ComputerName = $ComputerName
       User = $lguser.User
       Domain = $lguser.Domain
       Time = $User.CreationDate 
    New-Object -TypeName PSObject -Property $Properties


Get the Win32_Process instances for explorer.exe and foreach of them use the GetOwner method  to get the owners names and domain. Create an object and ouput

Posted in PowerShell and CIM, PowerShell and WMI | Leave a comment

Get-PhysicalDisk options

These are the Get-PhysicalDisk options for identifying the disk you want

-UniqueId <string>

-ObjectId <string>

-FriendlyName <string>

-InputObject <CimInstance#MSFT_PhysicalDisk>

-StorageSubsystem <CimInstance#MSFT_StorageSubsystem>

-StorageEnclosure <CimInstance#MSFT_StorageEnclosure>

-StorageNode <CimInstance#MSFT_StorageNode>

-StoragePool <CimInstance#MSFT_StoragePool>

-VirtualDisk <CimInstance#MSFT_VirtualDisk>

When dealing with disks installed in the machine then the friendly names is the easiest to use

PS> Get-PhysicalDisk | Format-List UniqueId, ObjectId, FriendlyName

UniqueId     : 60022480233DF060FE631B8A4EDD93A0
ObjectId     : {1}\\W510W16\root/Microsoft/Windows/Storage/Providers_v2\SPACES_PhysicalDisk.ObjectId=”{1dab9cf6-a1b4-11e6-a890-806e6f6e6963}:PD:{12e941a8-6125-c008-8806-8868642331ef}”
FriendlyName : Msft Virtual Disk

UniqueId     : {d8e80f34-22bc-0a36-b302-d96abe30a6cc}
ObjectId     : {1}\\W510W16\root/Microsoft/Windows/Storage/Providers_v2\SPACES_PhysicalDisk.ObjectId=”{1dab9cf6-a1b4-11e6-a890-806e6f6e6963}:PD:{d8e80f34-22bc-0a36-b302-d96abe30a6cc}”
FriendlyName : Samsung SSD 840 PRO Series

Posted in Powershell, Storage | Leave a comment

String casing

There are times when you may want to change string casing. You have a couple of options.

There are a couple of methods on the string class that you can use to modify the case of a string.

PS> 'aaa'.ToUpper()


PS> 'AAA'.ToLower()


Alternatively you can use the culture information

PS> (Get-Culture).TextInfo.ToLower('AAA')


PS> (Get-Culture).TextInfo.ToUpper('aaa')


PS> (Get-Culture).TextInfo.ToTitleCase('aaa')


The interesting one is To Titlecase which will capitalise the first letter and make the rest lower case

PS> (Get-Culture).TextInfo.ToTitleCase('aaBaaC')


At least it does for my culture settings

PS> Get-Culture

LCID             Name             DisplayName

 ----             ----             -----------

 2057             en-GB            English (United Kingdom)

You’ll need to test what it does if you have a different culture setting

Posted in Powershell | 1 Comment

Build a better pull server

DSC functions in 2 modes – push (most basic) and pull. Creating a pull server is a non-trivial task and the out-of-the-box pull server has some issues. Some of the folks at have decided its time to build a better pull server.

There’s a project on github that supplies the code for the open source, cross platform, pull server project known as tug.  pull – tug – pull… you get the picture.

You can find the project at

If you’re using DSC download it, give it a try and feed back to the project what you’ve discovered. 

Posted in DSC, Powershell | Leave a comment

Diskpart and PowerShell – part 6: Multiple partitions on a disk

So far we’ve looked at creating a single partition on a disk. This time we’ll look at how you can create multiple partitions on a disk. The are good reasons not to do this but its something I’ve seen done on a frequent basis.

Lets create a 20GB disk as an example and mount it

New-VHD -Path C:\test\Test1.vhdx -Dynamic -SizeBytes 20GB
Get-VHD -Path C:\test\Test1.vhdx | Mount-VHD

Initialise the disk

Initialize-Disk -Number 1

Now we can create some partitions

New-Partition -DiskNumber 1 -DriveLetter F -Size 5GB
New-Partition -DiskNumber 1 -DriveLetter G -Size 5GB
New-Partition -DiskNumber 1 -DriveLetter H -Size 5GB
New-Partition -DiskNumber 1 -DriveLetter I -Size 4.87GB

The reason that the last partition is only 4.87 G is that 128MB of disk space is reserved

PS> Get-Partition -DiskNumber 1 | Format-Table -AutoSize

   DiskPath: \\?\scsi#disk&ven_msft&prod_virtual_disk#2&1f4adffe&0&000003#{53f56307-b6bf-11d0-94f2-00a0c91efb8b}

PartitionNumber DriveLetter Offset         Size Type
--------------- ----------- ------         ---- ----
1                           17408        128 MB Reserved
2               F           135266304      5 GB Basic
3               G           5503975424     5 GB Basic
4               H           10872684544    5 GB Basic
5               I           16241393664 4.87 GB Basic

You can format the 4 new volumes in one pass

Get-Partition -DiskNumber 1 | 
where Type -ne 'Reserved' | 
Format-Volume -FileSystem NTFS -Confirm:$false –Force

PS> Get-Partition -DiskNumber 1 | Get-Volume | select DriveLetter, FileSystem, Size

DriveLetter FileSystem       Size
----------- ----------       ----
          H NTFS       5368705024
          G NTFS       5368705024
          I NTFS       5229244416
          F NTFS       5368705024

The Storage module can be used to simply and easily create multiple volumes on a disk

Posted in Powershell, Storage | Leave a comment