[gptalk] Re: Interpreting UserEnv Logs - Useful Tools and Texts

  • From: "Darren Mar-Elia" <darren@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 13 Nov 2008 13:54:38 -0800

Thanks Jerry. Considering I'm the official reviewer for this tool on
Codeplex, I should have posted the link J

 

 

From: gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On
Behalf Of Cruz, Jerome L
Sent: Thursday, November 13, 2008 7:53 AM
To: gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [gptalk] Re: Interpreting UserEnv Logs - Useful Tools and Texts

 

All. The referenced GPLogView  is also a very useful tool that GPO
Administrators should be familiar with. Read what Microsoft's Kevin Sullivan
has to say on the GPO Team Blog (and find the download link as well-the
download requires 'validation'):

 

http://blogs.technet.com/grouppolicy/archive/2007/02/08/gplogview.aspx 

 

Stated System Requirements

*       Supported Operating Systems: Windows Vista (I haven't tried it on an
W2KOcho system, but I assume it works there as well-Jerry C)

*       Must install as under Local Administrative privileges.
*       Must run utility from an elevated command prompt

 

Jerry Cruz | Group Policies Product Manager | Windows Infrastructure
Architecture| Boeing IT

 

 

From: gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On
Behalf Of Darren Mar-Elia
Sent: Thursday, November 13, 2008 7:34 AM
To: gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [gptalk] Re: Interpreting UserEnv Logs - Useful Tools and Texts

 

Alan-

I do tend to like the Operational Logs in Vista because they filter out a
lot of noise. My experience is that the native trace logs are only so useful
when it comes to actually solving problems. Now I have to admit that I
haven't had to use any logs that much in Vista, so I think I'm yet to be
convinced, but the Ops Logs and the gplogview utility do a pretty good job
of explaining what's going on without too much noise and in a presentable
format.

 

Darren

 

From: gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On
Behalf Of Alan & Margaret
Sent: Wednesday, November 12, 2008 9:03 PM
To: gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [gptalk] Re: Interpreting UserEnv Logs - Useful Tools and Texts

 

Hi Jerry,

 

Glad you like the software! Not only does Version 4 allow you to enable GP
preference trace logs, it also formats them so you can make sense of them.
The way the program works is that it has a control file that lets it
identify the important lines in the log and how they should be displayed in
the "tree" structure on the left. So if your log has entries that you think
would be useful in the tree structure, just send them through. This file
could also be extended to support other languages. If anyone is interested,
drop me an email offline. I really just need sample logs and someone to
check whether the final result looks OK.

 

One thing that changed with Vista was that Microsoft said they would do away
with the log and put it in the Event Log. I have tried using the Event Log
and it doesn't seem to have as much info as the UserEnv log and it is still
very difficult to read. Does anyone find the event logs a better source of
information than the UserEnv log?

 

I also got a response from Microsoft that ADMX files do not support blank
Valuenames. They said "it appears to be a valid bug"

  

Alan Cuthbertson

 

 

 Policy Management Software (Now with ADMX and Preference support):-

http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir
<http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir&f=pol_summary.shtml>
&f=pol_summary.shtml

 

ADM Template Editor(Now with ADMX support):-

http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir
<http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir&f=adm_summary.shtml>
&f=adm_summary.shtml

 

Policy Log Reporter - including Preference logging(Free)

http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir
<http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir&f=policyreporter.shtml>
&f=policyreporter.shtml

 

 

 

 

  _____  

From: gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On
Behalf Of Cruz, Jerome L
Sent: Thursday, 13 November 2008 11:23 AM
To: gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [gptalk] Interpreting UserEnv Logs - Useful Tools and Texts

 

MS has some new (and old) articles on interpreting the UserEnv  log that I
thought I pass along. The topic of changing the log to verbose mode (and
then interpreting the output) come up quite often. Note: They state up front
that the registry settings to turn on verbose logging are not applicable to
Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 systems. However, that doesn't mean
you can't get to similar data. It's just stored in a different spot
(c:\windows\debug\usermode\gpsvc.log). and 'guess what?... the
interpretation is nearly the same. [Also, I believe the cut off size for the
log is 1 MB, not 300 KB, but perhaps someone can confirm? What "was"
interesting is they state that if you make set the userenv.bak file to be
read-only, that the userenv.log file will continue to grow. now "that's"
useful information.and if you've run into rapid recycling of the files and
missed getting the data you needed, you know exactly what I mean! Hmmm. will
have to try that on other log files.]

 

From the 'Ask the Directory Services Team' Blog

 

Understanding How to Read a Userenv Log - Part 1

http://blogs.technet.com/askds/archive/2008/11/11/understanding-how-to-read-
a-userenv-log-part-1.aspx

 

Understanding How to Read a Userenv Log - Part 2

http://blogs.technet.com/askds/archive/2008/11/11/understanding-how-to-read-
a-userenv-log-part-2.aspx

 

Interpreting Userenv Log Files
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc786775.aspx

 

What's an even better thing..? Go get the 'free' Policy Reporter" utility at
www.sysprosoft.com. I've used it for years now and it really helps (a)
reading the logs and (b) manually enabling verbose mode. (Hey! I also see it
now has controls to enable logging for the GP Preference by sub-system. way
to go Alan!).

 

Jerry Cruz

 

 

From: gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On
Behalf Of Alan & Margaret
Sent: Monday, November 10, 2008 6:58 PM
To: gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [gptalk] Re: MS Office 2003 ADMX Files

 

Hi Darren,

 

Good idea. here is the link  http://www.sysprosoft.com/adm_to_admx.shtml 

 

Alan Cuthbertson

 

  _____  

From: gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On
Behalf Of Darren Mar-Elia
Sent: Tuesday, 11 November 2008 3:01 AM
To: gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [gptalk] Re: MS Office 2003 ADMX Files

 

Alan-

I hereby dub you the ADM(X) Master! Thanks for this great work. I think
there would be a lot of interest in posting these Office 2003 ADMXs to the
general public. If you want to do it on your site, I can post a link to it
from GPOGUY or I can host them on your behalf.

 

 

J

 

Darren

 

From: gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On
Behalf Of Alan & Margaret
Sent: Sunday, November 09, 2008 10:27 PM
To: gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [gptalk] Re: MS Office 2003 ADMX Files

 

Hi Patrick,

 

I am not surprised that FullArmour had problems converting the ADM files.
Microsoft used every possible structure for writing them that they could
think of! But I did eventually create admx files which appear to work. i.e
they load into gpmc and a quick check of the registry keys looks correct.

 

However, it showed up a bug in ADMX processing and a couple of
inconsistencies in the ADM files.

 

Firstly, the Outlk11.adm file has an entry under  Microsoft Office Outlook
2003/ Tools | Options.../Other/Advanced/Reminder Options - Other Reminders
which writes to the registry key
AppEvents\Schemes\Apps\Office97\Office97-Reminder\.Current with a valuename
which is blank. ADMX files do not seem to support writing to blank
Valuenames, so I have disabled that policy with a warning

 

Secondly, there are three entries which are managed by two different policy
settings. The first is OK, since both policies set them to the same values.
However the second two set them to different values. 

 

Case 1

office11.adm - Microsoft Office 2003/Tools | Options |Spelling - Recognize
smart tags in Excel

            (Checkbox - Check to use German post-reform rules when running
spell check)

            Registry key: Software\Policies\Microsoft\Shared Tools\Proofing
Tools\Spelling

            Valuename : GermanPostReform

            On value = 1, Off value =0

word11.adm - Microsoft Office word 2003\ Tools | Options...\Spelling &
Grammar- Use German post reform rules

            (Checkbox - Check to block Excel from recognizing SmartTags)

            Registry key: Software\Policies\Microsoft\Shared Tools\Proofing
Tools\Spelling

            Valuename : GermanPostReform

            On value = 1, Off value =0

 

Case 2

office11.adm - Microsoft Office 2003/ Tools | AutoCorrect Options... (Excel,
PowerPoint and Access)\Smart Tags - Recognize smart tags in Excel

            (Checkbox - Check to enforce setting on; uncheck to enforce
setting off)

            Registry key:
Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Excel\Options

            Valuename : RecognizeSmartTags

            On value = 2, Off value =0

excel11.adm - Microsoft Office Excel 2003\Miscellaneous - Recognize
SmartTags

            (Checkbox - Check to block Excel from recognizing SmartTags)

            Registry key:
Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Excel\Options

            Valuename : RecognizeSmartTags

            On value =0, Off value =1

 

Case 3

office11.adm - Microsoft Office 2003/collaboration settings - Outlook: Ad
hoc reviewing

            (DropList ))

            Registry key:
Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook\Options\Mail

            Valuename : AdHocReviewBehavior

Enable ad hoc reviewing = 0, Exclude author's e-mail in documents = 2,
Disable ad hoc reviewing =1

outlk11.adm - Microsoft Office Outlook 2003\Tools | Options
.\Preferences\Email-Options\Advanced Emal Options - When sending a message

            (Checkbox - Check to block Excel from recognizing SmartTags)

            Registry key:
Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook\Options\Mail

            Valuename : AdHocReviewBehavior

            On value =0, Off value =1

 

One thing that they regularly do is have a policy which consists solely of a
checkbox. If you enable the policy, then check the checkbox it stays
enabled. If you enable the policy then uncheck the checkbox, then save the
policy, it then shows the policy as disabled. I consider this to be bad
design. It should be implemented simply as a policy without a checkbox   

 

The other thing I realised during the conversion was that ADMX files always
display Categories and Policies in alphabetical order. ADM files allow you
to set your own order.

 

Note: If you are using V4 of my ADM Template Editor or Polman, this work
showed up a couple of minor bugs related to copying Categories and
interpreting ADM files. It also displays categories and policies in
alphabetical order. I have updated both products on the web

 

Alan Cuthbertson

 

 

 Policy Management Software (Now with ADMX and Preference support):-

http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir
<http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir&f=pol_summary.shtml>
&f=pol_summary.shtml

 

ADM Template Editor(Now with ADMX support):-

http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir
<http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir&f=adm_summary.shtml>
&f=adm_summary.shtml

 

Policy Log Reporter - including Preference logging(Free)

http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir
<http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir&f=policyreporter.shtml>
&f=policyreporter.shtml

 

 

 

  _____  

From: gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On
Behalf Of Alan & Margaret
Sent: Friday, 7 November 2008 6:56 AM
To: gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [gptalk] Re: MS Office 2003 ADMX Files

 

Hi Scott and Jerry,

 

Thanks for your support. Yes, Version 4 of my software does handle
conversion of ADM files to ADMX files. Having said that, I tried converting
the 2003 ADM files yesterday and found a bug in converting Checkboxes with
multiple registry keys. So I hope to have a new version of my program out
today and I will post the converted ADMX files then...

 

Alan Cuthbertson

 

 

 Policy Management Software (Now with ADMX and Preference support):-

http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir
<http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir&f=pol_summary.shtml>
&f=pol_summary.shtml

 

ADM Template Editor(Now with ADMX support):-

http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir
<http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir&f=adm_summary.shtml>
&f=adm_summary.shtml

 

Policy Log Reporter - including Preference logging(Free)

http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir
<http://www.sysprosoft.com/index.php?ref=activedir&f=policyreporter.shtml>
&f=policyreporter.shtml

 

 

   

 

  _____  

From: gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On
Behalf Of Scott Klassen
Sent: Friday, 7 November 2008 4:57 AM
To: gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [gptalk] Re: MS Office 2003 ADMX Files

 

The V4 version of the SysProSoft tool can convert ADM directly to ADMX and
to my experience does a better job than the Full Armor software.  As an
added bonus, the person behind SysProSoft, Alan Cuthbertson, hangs out on
this list.

 

Scott Klassen

 

From: gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On
Behalf Of Cruz, Jerome L
Sent: Thursday, November 06, 2008 10:38 AM
To: gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [gptalk] Re: MS Office 2003 ADMX Files

 

All,

 

Just some thoughts..

 

When I have run into issues with a direct conversion of an ADM template with
the Full Armor tool, I have had some success by first running an ADM
template through the SysProSoft 'ADM Template Editor' tool
(http://www.sysprosoft.com/products.shtml) and then running the resulting
(and renamed) ADM file through the 'Full Armor' tool. From what I can tell,
the changes are mostly focused on rearrangement of the Strings within the
template though there could easily be others.

 

That said, I have NOT attempted anything as complex as the Office 2003
templates. One of the issues (nits) I've had in the past with the Office
templates was the lack of any "Explain" tab text. Looking from this at a
higher level, that 'should' make them simpler to covert. On the other hand,
you never know what might set off problems. Perhaps the ADMX formats
'really' want 'Explain' text.and if missing.could generate problems in the
converter.

 

Like I said, just some thoughts.

 

Jerry Cruz | Group Policies Product Manager | Windows Infrastructure
Architecture | Boeing IT

 

From: gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On
Behalf Of Darren Mar-Elia
Sent: Wednesday, November 05, 2008 6:15 PM
To: gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [gptalk] Re: MS Office 2003 ADMX Files

 

Patrick-

I haven't tried it but knowing the Full Armor Migrator as I do, I suspect
those ADMs are too complicated or not formatted well for it. What kinds of
errors are you getting? 

 

Darren

 

From: gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On
Behalf Of Patrick Leathen 
Sent: Wednesday, November 05, 2008 6:07 PM
To: gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [gptalk] MS Office 2003 ADMX Files

 

Hi,

 

I hope I've got this right, first time I'm emailing here...

 

I just have a quick question, has anybody successfully migrated the Office
2003 ADM files to ADMX? I've attempted this a few times using the FullArmour
ADMX v1.2 tool unsuccessfully and have also posted the question on a few
other forums without receiving any answers, so I thought I'd try my luck
here.

 

Would be great to know if anyone else has attempted this and if they've
managed to successfully convert the files.

 

Thanks

Patrick Leathen


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