This Blog Gets A Major Facelift

I have kept the same theme on this WordPress blog since day 1. It has been 4 years and I started getting sick of it. Especially that picture of an old iPhone on the top of the page. I finally got around to update the theme today. I’ve also changed the site title to a more suitable one: “Tao Yang’s System Center Blog”. Special thanks to my wife – The background picture was taken by her using her Nikon D90 in Fiji few years ago. Bye bye to the old look, Sometimes I wish there are more artistic gene in

An Alternative for Surface Pro Docking Stations

I bought my Surface Pro 2 last November – third week after it was released in Australia. I only got it on the third week because I was on holidays in China when it was released and all the resellers ran out of stock when I came back. I also bought a type cover 2 the same time. I really wanted to get the power cover and the docking station, but they weren’t released back then. I thought I’d get the type cover for now and get the power cover and the docking station when they became available in Australia.

OpsMgr 2012: A Trick to Drive Another Contextual Widget From PowerShell Grid Widget

PowerShell Grid widget and PowerShell Web Browser Widget were released as part of OpsMgr 2012 SP1 UR6 and R2 UR2. To me, these two widgets have opened a window of opportunities, because by using PowerShell, it allows OpsMgr 2012 users to customise and present the data exactly the way they wanted on dashboards. Since it has been released, many people have share their work. Recently, Microsoft has started a new repository for the PowerShell widgets in TechNet Gallery. The best article for the PowerShell Grid Widget that I have seen so far is from Oleg Kapustin’s blog: SCOM Powershell Grid

New OpsMgr 2012 Dashboards Repository in TechNet Gallery

With the recent release of OpsMgr 2012 SP1 UR6 and R2 UR2, number of new dashboard widgets have been made available. The PowerShell Grid Widget and PowerShell Web Browser Widget are 2 of my favourite ones. Microsoft has just created a new repository for the community to share their scripts and dashboards. This repository is located in the TechNet Gallery Script Center. You can access it from this direct link: or go to the script center and browse to: System Center > Operations Manager Dashboards: Looks like the product team has already posted 4 samples in the first day.

Location, Location, Location. Part 3

This is the 3rd and the final part of the 3-part series. In this post, I will demonstrate how do I track the physical location history for Windows 8 location aware computers (tablets and laptops), as well as how to visually present the data collected on a OpsMgr 2012 dashboard. I often see people post of Facebook or Twitter that he or she has checked in at <some places> on Foursquare. I haven’t used Foursquare before (and don’t intend to in the future), I’m not sure what is the purpose of it, but please think this as Four Square in

Location, Location, Location. Part 2

This is the 2nd part of the 3-part series. In this post, I will demonstrate how do I monitor the physical location of my location aware devices (Windows 8 tablets and laptops). To do so, I created a monitor which generates alerts when a device has gone beyond allowed distance from its home location. I will now go through each the component in the management pack that I created to achieve this goal. Custom Class: Location Aware Windows Client Computer I created a custom class based on “Windows Client 8 Computer” class. I needed to create this class instead of

Location, Location, Location. Part 1

Yes, I am starting to write a 3 part series on this topic: Location, Location, Location. It is not about real estate business – It would be silly for me to wait until I’ve received MVP award to become a real estate salesman, right? This series is all about tracking physical location for Windows based mobile devices (tablets and laptops). It involves windows tablets/ laptops, OpsMgr 2012, dashboards, Google Maps and Windows Location Platform. Does this interest you? if so, please continue reading. Background When I started designing the OpsMgr 2012 infrastructure for my employer about a 18 months ago,

Setting up OpsMgr Knowledge Base on SharePoint 2010 Wiki

Previously, I blogged my opinion on using external knowledge base for OpsMgr. In that article, I mentioned a SharePoint 2013 Wiki solution developed by Stefan Koell. As I mentioned, I successfully set it up in my home lab without issues. However, I had issues setting it up at work, which is still using SharePoint 2010. After going through what I’ve done with the SharePoint engineer in my company, I was told the issue is with WikiRedirect.aspx. I was told this page doesn’t exist on my SharePoint 2010 Enterprise Wiki site. So to work around the issue, I had to update

Using an External Knowledge Base for OpsMgr

Summary I’ve been wanting to write a post on this topic for a while. Using an external knowledge base for OpsMgr is not something new. Many people have already shared their experiences on how to setup one up. My intention is to focus less on the technical side (i.e. How to set it up), but discussing what are the limitations of managing internal KB’s (company knowledge) natively within OpsMgr from both technical and organisational and social point of view and the how can we fill these gaps by using an external knowledge base management system. Please Note: this post is

MVP Award

Last night, I got an email from Microsoft and I have received the MVP Award for System Center Cloud and Datacenter Management. I’m so excited and honoured that I have been presented this wonderful award. I started blogging in this blog 4 years ago because I thought I have learnt a lot from the community and I have something to share. I still remember the day when I sat on the couch setting up this blog while watching South Africa FIFA World Cup back in 2010. now 4 years later, I received this award during Brazil World Cup 2014 .

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