Add multiple drivers to the Win10 DriverStore in one shot

One annoying thing in the newer version of Windows, to me, is the DriverStore. Not only does it make it more difficult than it should be to add tons of drivers in one shot, but to me, it’s just not that intuitive of  a way to manage them. Espicially when I’m trying to add drivers for like 9 different models of equipment to a generic image! Well, luckily, scripting once again comes to the rescue! Here’s a little one I got done today that lets you throw all drivers into the store in one shot! Continue reading “Add multiple drivers to the Win10 DriverStore in one shot”

Embrace the future, please.

It seems that nearly every day, I read an article, comment, or blog post about how someone, usually an IT with years of experience, is complaining about something. Now, most of the time these complaints are valid. Yes, Java sucks. Yes, Microsoft’s licensing scheme is insanity bordering on a sociopathic tendency. Yes, Linux distro X is better than Linux distro Y. But in the past few months, I’ve seen one complaint echo’d over and over again, and I’m here to say it’s time to shut up and move about it.

The complaint is usually about Powershell.

Continue reading “Embrace the future, please.”

Fog Zero-Touch Imaging with PDQ Deploy

UPDATE 4/19/16
This post has been superseded by an easier way, detailed in this post!

PDQ Deploy + Fog = Imaging Happiness take 2

I’ve been a happy user of Fog for years here in my district. It’s made imaging an easy, thoughtless process that works quickly for me. However, there has been one drawback that I haven’t really liked, and that is it’s reliance of fat images. If you’re not familiar, a fat image is an image with everything and the kitchen sink thrown in. Drivers, applications, settings, shortcuts, you name it, it’s in there. Now, there are some benefits to this. Mostly that you can push a button and boom, you know it’s all there. The problem, however, comes when it comes time to do updates to any of those parts of the fat image. You usually have to either rebuild the entire image (if you didn’t do it in a VM and use snapshots..) or at worst, have to fire up your golden image vm and update there, then reupload all that back to Fog. It’s time consuming, annoying, and something people usually pushed off. Continue reading “Fog Zero-Touch Imaging with PDQ Deploy”

I’m not a wizard, quit asking me to perform miracles.

This last weekend, I was able to attend the annual TIES conference in Minneapolis, MN. While there, I was able to meet other educators, technology professionals, industry reps, all while going over great lessons and work that are being used in schools across the US. Every buzzword you’ve ever heard was present in numbers, from flipped classrooms to coding kindergarteners, if you’ve heard of it before, it was represented. However, there was one extremely unsettling trend I noticed across every presentation I either attended or led:

The phrase “Lack of time” came up repeatedly.

This mindset really bothers me. Everyone in this world has the same 24 hours in the day. How we decide to use those hours, regardless of our job or social obligations or family dynamics, is up to us. There are tons of people who throw themselves into programs, be it gamification of a classroom or doing their doctorate, using that time to reach a goal that they find important. But for every one teacher that does that, I’d hazard to guess there are 10 who would rather sit back and state they don’t have time to do something new, something that would require extra work to get going, maybe a change in their teaching style. They’ve decided that something else in their life is a better use of their time, personally, than doing this change. Which is fine, that’s their choice. But it would be fantastic if they would quit complaining about lack of time, when it’s obviously a choice they have made to not have the time.

I don’t have time to learn another programing language in my life. But I’m doing it. Because it’s important to me, and I’ve given up some activities I really enjoy to be able to learn that language. It will help me perform better at my job, finding new and creative ways to solve problems with a toolset that I wouldn’t have otherwise. To me, that’s no different than a teacher flipping their classroom. It is a ton of work to do so, but it pays off.

I think it’s time for many teachers to quit complaining about time. I’m not a wizard, I can’t give you more time. I can only give you the tools that enable you to choose how you use your time. After that, it’s up to you.  And maybe, if you don’t want to change and develop with the times, it might be a better use of your time to update your resume.

Open Source Datacenter

I’m speaking at TIES 2014 this weekend, and figured I’d do a video for those who can’t attend. I go on about how I’ve setup my own Open Source datacenter, and how it works for me.

Thought for the day

Schools are primarily about repetitive, low-level routine cognitive work. That’s exactly the wrong emphasis in our society today, from an economic standpoint.  –Scott Mcleod

Unifi Wireless- K-12 1:1 Winner

In my quest to update my school’s wireless to support our ever growing 1:1 initative, I’ve looked at pretty much every vendor under the sun when it comes to wifi. You’re big names, like Cisco, HP, Motorola. Smaller brands, like Aruba, Ruckus, Meraki. You name it, I’ve more than likely demo’d it, reviewed it, tried it, or laughed at it. While looking, I was requiring a few different things that to me were very important.

  1. Easy to manage. This system was critical to our 1:1, which means if I needed to change something, I didn’t want to futz around for 30 minutes trying to remember the exact location in a menu madness or the command to type in. I wanted this to be, dare I say it, IOS easy.
  2. Stable. This was going out into the wild to be used by students, staff, and community. If you’ve worked in a school environment before, you know that these three types of users can, and will, destroy any kind of item placed in front of them, regardless of how much it benefits them or not. I needed this system to take the beating, and keep going.
  3. Solid technology, less bells and whistles. Tech over the last few years has been, in my eyes, adding more and more extra junk to their software/hardware and not focusing on the core of what they should be doing. For this system, I wanted a solid set of wireless AP’s that do their job on a solid layer 2 network. I don’t want them to also serve as cameras, I don’t want them to do any fancy layer3 routing. I don’t need that. If I need layer3, I’ll put in a layer3 device.
  4. The cost has to be right. We’re a school, not business. That means we actually need to buy for value, not for names.

Continue reading “Unifi Wireless- K-12 1:1 Winner”