Courtesy of this fancy post where they use big words and pictographs here, you can use this info to enable or disable the built-in global spell checking/highlighting and auto-correct features of Windows 8/Server 2012 to deploy these settings as a group policy preference.
One can only hope that this feature is any better than the auto-correct on Android phones which makes me want to smash my spy phone into tiny little pieces with a claw hammer or test it’s aerial durability/impact resistance with the closest nearby wall at times, but I wouldn’t hold your breath. Continue reading “Server 2012 – Enable/Disable Spellcheck Highlighting and Auto-Correct with Group Policy”
Boy do I sure feel like a dumbass sometimes. I researched and wrestled with this damn issue for a week or more only to find out that I had come across the answer to this problem about a dozen times but was looking in the wrong freaking spot. For whatever reason, when people were referring to disabling the mouse pointer shadow, I immediately thought of the place in windows System Properties > Advanced Tab > Performance > Settings > Visual Effects Tab > “Show shadows under mouse pointer” but that wasn’t fixing my problem and now I know why. Here’s the whole story.
I’ve got a mix of around 100 Neoware CA19, CA21, and HP T5145 thin clients, all with 128MB of flash running HP ThinPro build T3X31012 and rdesktop version 1.6.0 that I’ve been testing with on Server 2012 and this was a major problem. I was just about finished locking down this 7 server RDS deployment I’ve been working on and when I had my first few users start to log in to test everything, they had no mouse cursor, fucking awesome!
At first, I thought this may have been a VMware tools problem, so I had reinstalled it and had scoured all the forums there, trying various different little tweaks, registry keys, and what have you, but that was only the beginning. Then I tried adjusting the various RDP settings on the thin client with no luck. I tried all the different things on the various Windows forums and still no luck. I got to know all the ins and outs of HP’s thin client architecture, their use of the Manticore registry, config files and everything that goes along with it and how it all works.
Continue reading “Server 2012 – RDesktop: Fix Disappearing Mouse Cursor with Group Policy”
I thought I would share with you the master icon removal list for File Explorer that I’ve compiled from various sites. All of the articles I’ve come across tend to delete the icons for all user’s, but I’ve found that it is possible to delete some of them on a per user basis by creating the key structure in the HKCU section of the registry instead. You’ll just have to fiddle around with them if you want to try it.
My biggest bitch by far about Server 2012 is that it doesn’t appear to even be a finished product in regards to Group Policy lockdown procedures. On almost every account, you have to hack the damn registry to get rid of unwanted items from File Explorer not to mention the god damned Ribbon UI which I’m going to do a whole nother post to rant and rave about and explain how to customize/remove icons from it. I’m not going to go into great detail here on how to add them through Group Policy Preferences or anything so if you need to know how to do that, check out some of my other articles where I explain how to do it.
Continue reading “Server 2012/Windows 8 – Complete File Explorer Icon/Shortcut/Folder Removal List”
Thanks to Microsoft, with the removal of the Internet Explorer Maintenance section in Group Policy since IE9, once again they’ve decided to make things more complicated and the end users have lost yet another important administrative tool required for many environments.
That being said, the only way to set and enforce proxy settings in Internet Explorer now requires hacking the registry, which I’m seeing as a disturbingly all too common trend when setting up an RDS server. Here are the keys to the kingdom:
User Configuration > Preferences > Windows Settings > Registry
Continue reading "Server 2012 – Set Proxy Server and Prevent Changes via Group Policy"
Here are a few examples of how to pin items to the Classic Shell Start Menu using Group Policy Preferences and as always navigate to here inside of Group Policy Management:
User Configuration > Preferences > Windows Settings > Shortcuts
Right-click Shortcuts > New > Shortcut
To add the Windows Calculator to the Start Menu…
Continue reading “Classic Shell – Pin Items to the Classic Start Menu via Group Policy”
With the removal of the Internet Explorer Maintenance section in the Group Policy settings since IE10, adding user favorites is still a fairly simple process with Group Policy Preferences.
Continue reading “Server 2012 – Add Favorites via Group Policy Preferences”
One annoying thing that happens a lot in Windows is the odd window size in Internet Explorer when clicking on any URL type shortcut icon. Unfortunately, with the URL type shortcuts, there’s not really a way to guarantee how the window size will be positioned every time as most of the time it goes by your previous IE window’s state but we all know there are scenarios where that isn’t always the case.
Continue reading “Server 2012 – Creating Always Maximized Internet Explorer Desktop Shortcuts to Websites via Group Policy”
If you want to set the user’s home page initially but then allow them to change it to whatever they want, on the Common tab in Group Policy Preferences, just make sure to check the box “Apply once and do not reapply” otherwise, any changes the user makes to their home page will be lost the next time they log in.
Continue reading “Server 2012 – Set Internet Explorer Home/Start Page via Group Policy”
On an 2012 RDS Server, when running a software restriction policy, your 64 bit browser won’t work unless you specifically create a rule to allow it. In addition to that, on an RDS Server, there’s not really any advantage to using the 64 bit version of IE because almost all plugins were only built with 32 bit support.
That being said, at first I had some trouble creating a desktop icon for the 32 bit version of IE using Group Policy Prefences. Strangely enough, if I set the path in my shortcut to %PROGRAMFILES(x86)% it still brought up the 64 bit version of IE somehow, WTF?! Basically to figure this out, I just copied the shortcut properties of the IE icon on the Classic Shell Start Menu.
Continue reading “Server 2012 – Add a 32 Bit Internet Explorer Shortcut Icon on the Desktop via Group Policy”
When locking down your RDS Server, here are the registry keys needed to set Foxit Reader as the default PDF viewer per user via Group Policy Preferences to disable the annoying first run pop-up (technically, you can use just the last registry entry only and it will work but adding all of the keys is probably the safer approach):
Continue reading “Foxit Reader 7.0 – Set as the Default PDF Viewer via Group Policy”