Differentiating Vostro 360 AIOs

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We purchase and use Dell all-in-ones (Vostro line) as the primary desktop in our organization.  The difficulty is that, as consumer hardware, the model can be modified or discontinued at any time without prior notice.  Needless to say it creates headaches from time-to-time.  Recently the Vostro 360 hardware was changed, resulting in the need for new drivers.  Within my SCCM task sequences, I have the install of drivers (within the full OS) limited based upon the name of the model.  The challenge with the Vostro 360 is that they maintained the same exact model name, but had different hardware configurations.  What I found was a main difference between the two types was the Bluetooth hardware ID.  So in addition to querying the model, I added a new query for the Bluetooth hardware.

The point of this post isn’t so much about the Vostro, but more about how I used Win32_PnPEntity to differentiate the two models so that the old config would get one set of drivers and the new config would get the other set of drivers.  In the driver install package step for the task sequence, simply click on the Options tab and add a WMI Query action with the following code:

Select * from Win32_PnPEntity where DeviceID like 'USB\\VID_0CF3&PID_3002%'

Hotfix for Windows 7 Extremely Slow Boot Performance

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When our company first implemented Windows 7, the performance was quite good and we were impressed.  However, now that Win7 has been in our organization for the last 1 1/2 years, we’re beginning to see a significant performance degradation in boot times.  What was a 1 minute boot time can now be anywhere from 4 to 10 minutes for Windows to get to Ctrl-Alt-Del screen.

In performing analysis on extremely slow boot/login times, I identified both the cause and a Win7 hotfix to correct the issue.  If you are having a similar problem, check out KB2505348 – High CPU usage or a lengthy startup process occurs during WMI repository verification when a large WMI repository exists in Windows 7 or in Windows Server 2008 R2.

One has to chuckle at Microsoft’s titled description on the issue as “lengthy startup process” which in the real world means “so slow that you never want ever EVER shut off your computer because every time you do, you consider making a switch to Linux”.

** Update 10/2/12: there is a newer version for Windows 7 SP1 at http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2617858 **

Repairing WMI Repository

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When troubleshooting WMI on SMS/SCCM clients, I’ve frequently used the following command to attempt a repair of the WMI repository.  I don’t recall where I found it (several years ago), but I also don’t want to ever forget it!

  1. Open a command prompt
  2. Change to directory C:\Windows\system32\wbem\
  3. Run: for /f %s in (‘dir /b *.mof *.mfl’) do mofcomp %s