Monthly Archives: November 2012

[Office 365] Access to the registry key "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\MSOLCoExistence" is denied

If you receive the error when configuring the Microsoft Directory Synchronization Tool to communicate with Office 365:
"Access to the registry key 'HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\MSOLCoExistence' is denied"

Make you you right click and run the tool as an administrator 🙂

Microsoft Online Service Directory Synchronization Configuration Wizard in the Configuration step. The error

[Office 365] Delete a user account sitting in Recycle bin

Normally, user accounts that are deleted within Office 365 sit in "The recycle bin" where they can be recovered if needed. You can't, however, delete users from that gray area within the web GUI. If you wanted to, say, delete and remove the license from a user and create a non-licensed shared mailbox, you're boned without emptying it from the recycle bin first.

Before you start,you'll need Microsoft Online Services Module for Powershell


To remove a specific user account from the Recycle Bin

  1. Connect normally, except add in connecting to the MSO server
    1. $LiveCred = Get-Credential
    2. $Session = New-PSSession -ConfigurationName Microsoft.Exchange -ConnectionUri -Credential $LiveCred -Authentication Basic -AllowRedirection
    3. Import-PSSession $Session
    4. Connect-MSOLService -Credential $LiveCred
  2. The ReturnDeletedUsers switch returns accounts found in the recycle bin. To return all:
    1. Get-MSOLUser -ReturnDeletedUsers
  3. If you find the account you want to remove, it's a simple cmdlet to do so: where "Email Address" is the upn of the actual account
    1. Remove-MSOLUser -UserPrincipalName "Email Address" -RemoveFromRecycleBin
  4. If you're removing an account in order to recreate it, you'll have to wait 5-10 minutes before O365 will allow you to recreate over the deleted account.

If you don't have a problem nuking them all, you can empty all via piping the get to the remove

#Haven't tested this one; have a nagging you may need to fill an array and foreach through all the elements actually.

Get-MsolUser -ReturnDeletedUsers | Remove-MsolUser -RemoveFromRecycleBin -Force


Upgrading SolarWinds 10.3 to 10.4 With NetFlow 3.9 to 3.10

Earlier this week I decided to update NetFlow and came across some weird stuff. I updated NetFlow first, all went all. Updated NPM to 10.4 and all heck broke loose. The following messaged started to popup when going to the Netflow tab of SolarWinds:
"Error: NetFlowService inaccessible. Verify that service is 'Started'. » More Information"

I had tried restarting the SolarWinds Netflow service, rebooting the whole machine, running the repair option of Netflow via the installer, and creating a whole new database; neither of which prevailed.

Finally I opened up a ticket with SolarWinds and it turned out to be database connectivity issues. After troubleshooting with a tech for a few hours, eventually I had this escalated to the dev. team. Turns out that the database configuration file has issues reading "s and they have you replace the passwords with 's.

So the fix:

  1. Open c:\Program Files (x86)\SolarWinds\Orion
  2. Edit the SWNetPerfMon.db file using Notepad
  3. Replace all double quotes (") with single quotes (') around your passwords.
  4. Restart all Solarwinds services using the Orion Service Manager.

Wait a few minutes and you should now start to see the fancy NetFlow charts in SolarWinds 🙂

DNS name does not exist. - Windows Activiation

When activating Windows (in this case Server 2008 R2), you receive the following dialog box:
"Code: 0x8007232B Description: DNS name does not exist."


If you receive this error, you are more than likely using an ISO from the Microsoft Volume Licensing Center when in reality you want to just use your license key (the OS is looking for your KMS server (Key management services), and if you don't have one, then you receive this DNS failure).

How to:

  1. Click Start, click All Programs, click Accessories, and then right-click Command Prompt.
    1. Click Run as administrator.
  2. Execute the following command (where the X's are your license key :)):
    1. slmgr -ipk xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx
  3. You should get a popup saying the key has successfully been installed after you execute the command (there is a delay).  Once you see that, go ahead and activate windows as you normally would.
    1. Start->right click properties on My Computer->Activate...

Get MD5 Hash of a file via PowerShell/Windows

Want to check the hash of a huge file you downloaded on your shady network and have a machine running powershell? Then you are in luck!

Execute the following script to output the hash of the file you want to validate:

$FilePath = "c:\Users\MyAwesomeUser\Desktop\myreallybigfilethatisprobablyaniso.iso"
$md5 = new-object -TypeName System.Security.Cryptography.MD5CryptoServiceProvider
$hash = [System.BitConverter]::ToString($md5.ComputeHash([System.IO.File]::ReadAllBytes($FilePath)))
Write-Host $hash.Replace("-","")

Hope this helps!

VMware A general system error occurred: Timed waiting for vpxa to start

If you receive the error below while adding a host to your vCenter server:
A general system error occurred:Timed waiting for vpxa to start

All you need to do is update your vCenter instance. For example, if you are running vCenter Server 5.0, you cannot add an ESXi v5.1 host to your vCenter instance.

VMware View Composer Installation Error - Unknown Software Exception

When installing VMware View Composer, I was receiving the following error:
"Application Error, The exception unknown software exception (0x0000409) Occurred"

Turns out this was an issue with installation privileges. Rather than installing the software as a domain administrator, I simply logged into the local Administrator account on the machine and installed it.