Blog Posts by dean.allmann

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Unable to access Samba share on KACE appliance using hostname

I noticed recently that I was no longer able to access the KACE share files using the hostname, even though DNS was working properly.  I could only access it using the IP address of the KACE appliance.  The result of this was that I was no longer able to deploy clients using the KACE appliance.  All clients would have to be deployed using group policy or manually.  I contacted Dell KACE support and after many days of waiting for a response, the tech told me that as long as I had a workaround, they were not going to pursue a solution further.  Well today, I discovered that the problem is worse than just not being able to deploy, it also means that I cannot update any clients.  Faced with the prospect of manually updating many client machines, I had new incentive to try to find a solution again.

I looked online for information about Samba and hostname restrictions, and found that hostnames need to be less than fifteen characters.  My hostname is 14 characters formatted like this xx-xx-xxxx####.  I also noticed that others online where having the exact same symptoms with hostnames and Samba shares even without KACE being involved, in that they could only access the shares if they used the IP address and not the hostname.  So, I took a chance and changed my hostname, so that is was formatted like this xx-xx-xxxx.  And, after a reboot, I could then access the KACE shares using just the hostname.  Victory!!!  Just for fun, I changed the hostname back to what it was originally, and then the shares become unavailable using the hostname again.  So, I've gone with the shorter hostname and all seems to be working well again.

I am sharing this with all of you in case you have experienced the same issue.  Try changing your hostname.  It may help.
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OVAL Scan Smart Labels

I created the following two MySQL queries to be used with OVAL scanning.  By using these I can be sure that all of my computers have OVAL scans once each month, but not more than once each month.  This solves the problem of computers that are offline when I perform the OVAL scan. 

The first query looks for all machines that have not had a successful scan in the past month, and the second query looks for all machines that have never had a successful scan.  I created a Smart Label for each query and then use both Smart Labels in my OVAL schedule.  I can then set my OVAL scan schedule to be some short period, like once every five hours, but it will only scan those computers that have not already had a successful scan in the past month.  This could be further improved by excluding any computer that cannot have an OVAL scan performed, but in our case that would not exclude too many computers so I'm not worried enough about it to try to improve it in that way.

*****First Query*****************************************************************************

SELECT DISTINCT
    MACHINE.*
FROM
    KBOT,
    KBOT_LOG,
    MACHINE
WHERE
    KBOT.ID = KBOT_LOG.KBOT_ID
        AND MACHINE.ID = KBOT_LOG.MACHINE_ID
        AND KBOT.NAME = 'OVAL Test Runner'
        AND KBOT_LOG.STATUS = '1'
GROUP BY MACHINE.ID
HAVING MAX(KBOT_LOG.START_TIME) < DATE_SUB(CURDATE(), INTERVAL 1 MONTH)

*****Second Query*****************************************************************************

SELECT
    *
FROM
    MACHINE
WHERE
    (MACHINE.ID NOT IN (SELECT
            MACHINE.ID
        FROM
            KBOT,
            KBOT_LOG,
            MACHINE
        WHERE
            KBOT.ID = KBOT_LOG.KBOT_ID
                AND MACHINE.ID = KBOT_LOG.MACHINE_ID
                AND KBOT.NAME = 'OVAL Test Runner'
                AND KBOT_LOG.STATUS = '1'))
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