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Dell KACE and Deep Freeze: Using Scripting to Freeze and Thaw Systems

Introduction

 

Customers who use Deep Freeze need a way to unfreeze their systems in order to do patching and system maintenance and then refreeze the system to allow for normal day to day operation. This guide covers creating scripts for enabling and disabling Deep Freeze for both Windows and Mac systems via the KACE Systems Management Appliance.

After completing this document, you should be able to:

·         Understand the process for creating scripts for freezing and unfreezing Windows computers

·         Understand the process for creating scripts for freezing and unfreezing Macintosh computers


 

Deep Freeze for Windows

 

Thawing Your System

 

Before changes can be made to a computer secured by Deep Freeze, it must be put into a writeable state. This process is known as “Thawing” and can be accomplished with a simple KScript.

·         In the Scripting module, click “Choose Action”, then click “New

QwLTD4.png

 

·         Name your script “Deep Freeze – Boot Thawed” and select Online Kscript from the Type dropdown. You can also input a description of what the script does.

·         Under the Deploy section, uncheck the Select Specific Operating Systems box and then click “Microsoft Windows”. You can also choose what systems to deploy the script to from this section.

·         In the Tasks section, find the Verify option and click “Add”.

·         Choose “Verify a directory exists” and input “%PROGRAMFILES(X86)%” in the text box (without quotes) and click “Save Changes”

·         Go to the On Success section and click “Add”, then select “Launch a program” from the dropdown and enter the following information into the fields:

o   Directory: $(KACE_SYS_DIR)\syswow64

o   File: DFC.exe

o   Check the “Wait for completion” box

o   Parameters: dellkace /BOOTTHAWED

o   Click “Save Changes”

·         Go to the Remediation section and click “Add”, then select “Launch a program” from the dropdown and enter the following information into the fields:

o   Directory: $(KACE_SYS_DIR)\system32

o   File: DFC.exe

o   Check the “Wait for completion” box

o   Parameters: dellkace /BOOTTHAWED

o   Click “Save Changes”

 

Note:

The dellkace entry in the Parameters field is the password for  the thaw command. Replace that entry with the password for your DeepFreeze software.

 

·         Scroll to the bottom of the page and click “Save”

Twr96N.png

You may run this script on demand by choosing the “Run Now” option, or schedule it to run on whatever schedule you prefer.

 

 


 

Freezing Your System

 

Once changes have been made to the system, it will need to be placed back in a “Frozen” state. Use the following steps to create a script to freeze the target PC.

 

·         In the Scripting module, click “Choose Action”, then click “New

·         Name your script “Deep Freeze – Boot Frozen” and select Online Kscript from the Type dropdown. You can also input a description of what the script does.

·         Under the Deploy section, uncheck the Select Specific Operating Systems box and then click “Microsoft Windows”. You can also choose what systems to deploy the script to from this section.

·         In the Tasks section, find the Verify option and click “Add”.

·         Choose “Verify a directory exists” and input “%PROGRAMFILES(X86)%” in the text box (without quotes) and click “Save Changes”

·         Go to the On Success section and click “Add”, then select “Launch a program” from the dropdown and enter the following information into the fields:

o   Directory: $(KACE_SYS_DIR)\syswow64

o   File: DFC.exe

o   Check the “Wait for completion” box

o   Parameters: dellkace /BOOTFROZEN

o   Click “Save Changes”

·         Go to the Remediation section and click “Add”, then select “Launch a program” from the dropdown and enter the following information into the fields:

o   Directory: $(KACE_SYS_DIR)\system32

o   File: DFC.exe

o   Check the “Wait for completion” box

o   Parameters: dellkace /BOOTFROZEN

o   Click “Save Changes”

·         Scroll to the bottom of the page and click “Save”

vZ7Jdv.png

You may run this script on demand by choosing the “Run Now” option, or schedule it to run on whatever schedule you prefer.

Deep Freeze for Macintosh

 

Thawing Your System

 

·         In the Scripting module, click “Choose Action”, then click “New

·         Name your script “Deep Freeze – Boot Thawed” and select Online Shell Script from the Type dropdown. You can also input a description of what the script does.

·         Under the Deploy section, uncheck the Select Specific Operating Systems box and then click “Mac OS X”. You can also choose what systems to deploy the script to from this section.

·         In the Script section, input the following commands:

#! /bin/sh

 

# Thaw Deep Freeze Mac Client

 

echo - Deep Freeze Mac Thaw Executing

 

DFXPSWD=dellkace /Library/Application\ Support/Faronics/Deep\ Freeze/deepfreeze -u dellkace -p bootThawed

 

echo - Rebooting system

shutdown -r now

 

·         In the Script File Name box, name the script DPM_Thawed.sh

·         Scroll to the bottom of the page and click “Save”

 

krzv92.png

You may run this script on demand by choosing the “Run Now” option, or schedule it to run on whatever schedule you prefer.

Freezing Your System

 

·         In the Scripting module, click “Choose Action”, then click “New

·         Name your script “Deep Freeze – Boot Frozen” and select Online Shell Script from the Type dropdown. You can also input a description of what the script does.

·         Under the Deploy section, uncheck the Select Specific Operating Systems box and then click “Mac OS X”. You can also choose what systems to deploy the script to from this section.

·         In the Script section, input the following commands:

#! /bin/sh

 

# Thaw Deep Freeze Mac Client

 

echo - Deep Freeze Mac Freeze Executing

 

DFXPSWD=dellkace /Library/Application\ Support/Faronics/Deep\ Freeze/deepfreeze -u dellkace -p bootFrozen

 

echo - Rebooting system

 

shutdown -r now

 

·         In the Script File Name box, name the script DPM_Frozen.sh

·         Scroll to the bottom of the page and click “Save”

zk39Nt.png

You may run this script on demand by choosing the “Run Now” option, or schedule it to run on whatever schedule you prefer.

Conclusion

 

By following the steps in this guide, you should be able to create the scripts necessary for freezing and thawing your computers. This will allow you to manage your systems, update security patches and deploy software to the computers without sacrificing the security provided by the Deep Freeze application. 
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Software Library Install of Java Runtime Environment 7

Previously, we looked at installing Adobe Reader XI via the Software Library. This article focuses on installing the Oracle Java Runtime Environment 7. As before, users will be able to use this item to install the program on their computers without needing to elevate their local permissions. 

The installer can be downloaded here: http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/java/javase/downloads/index.html 

For this example, we will be using the 64 bit version of the installer, but the process is essentially the same for the 32 bit version. 

Before we can set up the Software Library item, we must first have a listing for the program in Software Inventory. The easiest way to do this is to manually install the program on a test box that has the KACE agent installed, then forcing an inventory update on that system. 

Once the program has been added to your software inventory, browse to the listing and select the supported Operating Systems and upload the .exe to associate it. Once it’s uploaded, save the item.

 

Once the file has been uploaded to the KBOX, go to Service Desk>Software Library and choose Add New Item from the dropdown.

Select Install for the Package Type, then select the program from the dropdown list. 

Once it’s selected, use the following command line to install: 

jre-7u11-windows-x64.exe /s 

This will do a silent install of the application. You may want to add additional parameters to the installation. You can do so by adding them to the command line.

Paramters:

AUTOUPDATECHECK = enables or disables automatic check for update

JAVAUPDATE = enables or disables updates

JU = enables or disables updates

MOZILLA = 1 = register java with mozilla

IEXPLORER = 1 = register java with ie 

For this example, we want to disable automatic updates and prevent the system from being restarted by the application, so we will use the following command line:

jre-7u11-windows-x64.exe /s /v"/norestart AUTOUPDATECHECK=0 JAVAUPDATE=0 JU=0" 

*Note: You can also add installation instructions to the page if you desire, and limit access to specific user labels. If you would like more information on these features, please refer to the Service Desk Administrator Guide at http://www.kace.com/support/resources/documentation 

Click the Enabled check box at the top of the window, and then click Save. Click OK on any informational  pop-ups that come up. You may see the Package Type bubble change to Download after saving. DO NOT CLICK SAVE AGAIN. Instead, just navigate to any other page in the KBOX. 

Once it’s created, users can install from the Software Library by navigating to the user portal and selecting the item. Once there, all they have to do is click Install Now.

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Using Managed Install to Remove uTorrent Silently

One of the biggest day to day problems IT administrators have to deal with is users installing unwanted programs on their systems. You can use Distribution to remove those programs from computers managed by your KACE appliance. In this example, we’ll be looking at using a Managed Install to remove the uTorrent client from a system automatically. 

Whenever a program is installed onto a managed computer, the next check in will list that program in the inventory page. The software details for a given program will often provide you with the uninstall command. 

To remove the unwanted program, we just need to create a new Managed Install. Go to Distribution and choose Add New Item from the dropdown. Then, select the item from your dropdown list. Since this program is not one that is being installed by the KACE appliance, it will not have an associated file. Check the “Also show software without an Associated File” box and select the program from your list.

Click the “Configure Manually” button, then paste the text of the uninstall string into the Installation Command box. For this example, we’ll be doing a silent uninstall, so we will add the /s parameter to the uninstall string. 

"C:\Program Files (x86)\uTorrent\utorrent.exe" /uninstall /s 

Check the “Un-Install using Full Command Line” and “Run Command Only” boxes.

Add any notes in the “Notes” field, then choose how you want the Managed Action to run. For this example, we’ll be executing the command at the next check in, so use “Execute anytime (next available)”. 

Since this is a program we do not want in our network, we’ll also deploy this Managed Install to all machines. 

Set any pre or post-install messages you would like to send to the user, then click save. Since we’re doing a silent uninstall, we will not be adding messages for this example.

The next time the system checks in, the program will be removed. You can force a check in to remove it faster if you desire. The distribution will show up in the “To Install List” for any computer that has uTorrent installed. 

*Note: It may take two inventory cycles for the software removal to reflect in your inventory, since the first check in initiates the uninstall command. 

Rogue programs are a problem that affects every environment. Using this process, you can effectively remove them from your network, allowing you to focus on more important tasks.

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Adding Your Company Logo to K1000 Appliance Screens and Popups

Companies that use the Dell KACE appliance frequently ask if they can insert their corporate logo into the help desk and other user facing areas of the appliance. This can be done quickly and easily. In this guide, you will learn how to replace the standard Dell KACE logo with your own in the User Portal, the Client alert screen and in reports. 

There are a few basic requirements for images. The User Portal and Report can use .bmp, .gif, .jpg, and .png file types. The Agent Alert image can only be .bmp. Additionally, there are size restrictions for each area. 

User Portal

224x50 is the standard size.

104x50 is shorter and doesn't clip the blue highlight around the 'Log Out' link.

300x75 is about as big as you can get without affecting the layout. 

Report

The report image dimensions are 120x32, this is specified in the auto-generated xml layout. You can adjust the report xml if you needed a different layout size. 

Agent Alert

KUserAlert uses a built-in image that is 100x38 for the logo. Anything different than that will get resized. The client logo displays on snooze and install progress popups, alerts, and message windows created by scripts. The splash screen logo displayed at boot and login is not currently customizable. 

Once you have your company’s logo sized appropriately for each section, you can add them to the appliance by going to the Settings>General Settings area of the KBox. Browse to the appropriate picture for each line.

Once all images are selected, hit Upload Logos. The update should be instantaneous on User Portal and Reports. The Agent Alert will not update until the next time the system checks in. You can log into the User Portal to see the change.

User Portal

Agent Alert

Report

*Note: The logo for reporting will only show up when the report is run as HTML. Running as CSV or TXT will not display any logo. 

Adding your own logo is an easy way to personalize your KACE appliance, which can reduce user confusion when going to the portal or when getting pop up messages from the appliance. 

Resources:

http://www.kace.com/support/resources/kb/article/what-are-the-specifications-for-logo-overrides-on-the-kace-k1000-appliance-settingsgeneral-tab

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Software Library Install of Adobe Reader XI

It’s not always necessary to distribute software to all of the users in your environment. In these situations, having a self-help area where users can download and install software without needing to contact IT can be helpful. By using the Software Library feature of the K1000 appliance, you can allow your users to download and install approved software without having to elevate their permissions. In this article, we’ll be looking at how to set up an install for Adobe Reader XI via the software library.

 *Note: The MSI can be downloaded here- ftp://ftp.adobe.com/pub/adobe/reader/win/11.x/11.0.00/en_US/ 

Before we can set up the Software Library item, we must first have a listing for the program in Software Inventory. I recommend manually installing the program on a test box that has the KACE agent installed, and then forcing a check in. That’s the easiest way to create the item. 

Just click the Adobe Reader XI link to jump to the software inventory page for that item. 

Once the software item has been added, we’ll need to select the operating systems it will be installed on, and add the MSI package by using the Choose File button in the Associated Files section.

 

 

Once the MSI has been uploaded, we’re ready to set up our Software Library install. Go to Service Desk>Software Library and choose Add New Item from the Choose Action Dropdown.

Choose Install for Package Type and then select the Adobe Reader XI software item from the dropdown list.

 

Once it’s selected, use the following command line to install: 

msiexec.exe /I adberdr11000_en_US.msi /qb EULA_ACCEPT=YES 

The /qb allows the user to see a progress bar, which lets them know the process is working. If you want a fully silent install, use /qn instead. You can also disable automatic updates by adding DISABLE_ARM_SERVICE_INSTALL=1 in the line. For this example, we’ll leave automatic updates on. 

*Note: You can also add installation instructions to the page if you desire, and limit access to specific user labels. If you would like more information on these features, please refer to the Service Desk Administrator Guide at http://www.kace.com/support/resources/documentation  

Click the Enabled check box at the top of the window, and then click Save. Click OK on any informational  pop-ups that come up. You may see the Package Type bubble change to Download after saving. DO NOT CLICK SAVE AGAIN. Instead, just navigate to any other page in the KBOX. 

Congratulations! You’ve now created your software item. Next, we’ll look at how the users can download and install it. 

Log into the user portal using the K1000 Hostname or IP address. Then click on Software Library and choose the package to be installed.

Then click Install Now.

After a few seconds, the user should see the installation begin.

*Note: Depending on the size of the program, it may take a few minutes to start. Since this one is small, it usually kicks off in under a minute. Timing will vary depending on size of file and network bandwidth.

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