HOWTO: Silently remove old VMware vCenter 5.x apps/tools and install the newest 6.x ones

It appears that VMware has finally figured out how to make vSphere 6 stable, which means it is finally time for my team to start migrating our clients off vSphere 5.5 and onto vSphere 6.    Upgrading a vSphere host takes all of 60 seconds with esxcli followed by a reboot of the host.  Upgrading all the apps and tools to manage the vSphere hosts however can take hours if doing it manually across all the machines in a domain though.

Like many of you (I’m sure), we generally have the various VMware apps and tools such as VIClient, PowerCLI, VMRC, Client Integration Plugin, and Update Manager client installed on multiple machines throughout the client’s computer system.  It’s time consuming and a real pain in the butt to go into Add/Remove programs and manually uninstall all the old 5.x tools and then manually install all the new 6.0 tools on each of these machines.  So, after a bit of testing and troubleshooting, I’ve come up with a series of one liners to cut and paste into an administrative command prompt to do all the time consuming pain the butt work without actually doing any of the work myself… Using these scripts, I can generally remove all the old 4.x and 5.x software and install all the new 6.0 software in less than 5 minutes per machine.

And I use our inventory and software management system to determine which machines have 5.x apps installed on them before I ever begin so I can target just the machines I need to without wasting time.  So basically once I have all ESXi hosts upgraded to version 6, I use Remote Desktop Connection Manager to connect to each machine I have identified as having 5.x apps, open an Administrator command prompt and cut and paste all my command lines in (both uninstall and install).  Once that machine is cranking away, I move onto the next machine and start the same process over again, and then on to the next machine.  Generally the first machine is completed before I get the last machine even started.  Then it is just a matter of verifying the apps work as expected…

So first we want remove all existing VMware apps on the target machine except VMware Tools and VMware Update Manager (server, not client).  You should be able to cut and paste all 7 of these command lines into the administrative command prompt at the same time and they will run one after the other, silently uninstalling any installed application on the machine with a name that matches the search parameters. The 7th line will open Add/Remove programs for you so you can manually verify everything has been removed before continuing.

Important – make sure there are no opened/running browsers on the machine and that none of the VMware apps are opened (very important if you are doing this on a Windows server that allows Remote Desktop for Administration and another admin is logged into it at the same time!!!)

**Note – if you are still using a Windows based vCenter server – it likely wouldn’t be too wise to run these uninstall commands on the vCenter server – consider yourself warned**

start /wait wmic product where "name like 'vmware c%%'" call uninstall
start /wait wmic product where "name like 'vmware r%%'" call uninstall
start /wait wmic product where "name like 'vmware vix%%'" call uninstall
start /wait wmic product where "name like 'vmware vsphere c%%'" call uninstall
start /wait wmic product where "name like 'vmware vsphere p%%'" call uninstall
start /wait wmic product where "name like 'vmware vsphere update manager c%%'" call uninstall
start appwiz.cpl

So now we all our old version 5.x tools and apps removed from our management stations, so we can go ahead now and silently deploy our new version 6.x apps.  Again, you should be able to paste these 6 lines all at once into a command prompt and they will run sequentially and install the VIClient, VMware Remote Console, vSphere CLI, vSphere PowerCLI, and the Update Manager client.

 

start /wait \\SERVER\SETUP\VMWARE\ESXi60u02\VMware-viclient.exe /q /s /w /L1033 /v" /qr"
start /wait msiexec /qb- /i \\SERVER\SETUP\VMWARE\ESXi60u02\VMware-VMRC-9.0.0-4288332.msi EULAS_AGREED=1 AUTOSOFTWAREUPDATE=0 DATACOLLECTION=0
start /wait \\SERVER\SETUP\VMWARE\ESXi60u02\VMware-vSphere-CLI-6.0.0-3561779.exe  /s /v/qn
start /wait \\SERVER\SETUP\VMWARE\ESXi60u02\VMware-PowerCLI-6.3.0-3737840.exe  /s /v/qn 
start /wait \\SERVER\SETUP\VMWARE\ESXi60u02\VMware-UMClient.exe  /s /v/qn 
start appwiz.cpl

 

Add/Remove Programs should once again automatically open for you to manually verify that everything has installed correctly.

As always – Use any tips, tricks, or scripts I post at your own risk.

REVISED – HOWTO: Grab the all file download links on a HP Inc driver download page and wget them

About 3 months ago, I posted how to grab all the download links on a HP Inc driver download page and wget them.  After some messing around, I decided to take my previously posted instructions (which you can find here) and turn them into a pair of macros for Notepad++ to save some manual labor.  Below is the content of the two macros.  I also assigned ALT+F12 to the first macro, and ALT+F10 to the second macro.  And finally I assigned ALT+F11 to the Hex to Ascii plugin.

So now all I need to do is open Notepad++, paste the HP Inc’s driver download page’s source into Notepad++ and hit ALT+F12, ALT+F11, and then ALT+F10 to get my wget links.

To use these two macro’s, you’ll need to edit %AppData%\Notepad++\shortcuts.xml and insert these two macros, then save shortcuts.xml.  You also need to close Notepad++ and reopen it before using the macros.

Macro #1 – HP Inc Download Source Cleanup Part 1 – ALT+F12

<Macro name="HP Inc Download Source Cleanup Part 1" Ctrl="no" Alt="yes" Shift="no" Key="123">
<Action type="3" message="1700" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1601" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="#" />
<Action type="3" message="1625" wParam="0" lParam="1" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1602" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1702" wParam="0" lParam="768" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1701" wParam="0" lParam="1609" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1700" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1601" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="\t" />
<Action type="3" message="1625" wParam="0" lParam="1" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1602" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1702" wParam="0" lParam="768" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1701" wParam="0" lParam="1609" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1700" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1601" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam='&apos;&quot;&gt;\r\n' />
<Action type="3" message="1625" wParam="0" lParam="1" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1602" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="\r\n" />
<Action type="3" message="1702" wParam="0" lParam="768" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1701" wParam="0" lParam="1609" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1700" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1601" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam='&quot;&gt;\r\n' />
<Action type="3" message="1625" wParam="0" lParam="1" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1602" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="\r\n" />
<Action type="3" message="1702" wParam="0" lParam="768" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1701" wParam="0" lParam="1609" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1700" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1601" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="obtainSoftware?url=" />
<Action type="3" message="1625" wParam="0" lParam="1" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1602" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="\r\n###" />
<Action type="3" message="1702" wParam="0" lParam="768" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1701" wParam="0" lParam="1609" sParam="" />
<Action type="0" message="2013" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="2" message="0" wParam="42043" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="2" message="0" wParam="42056" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="2" message="0" wParam="42059" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1700" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1601" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="^###" />
<Action type="3" message="1625" wParam="0" lParam="2" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1702" wParam="0" lParam="784" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1701" wParam="0" lParam="1615" sParam="" />
<Action type="2" message="0" wParam="43051" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1700" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1601" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="###" />
<Action type="3" message="1625" wParam="0" lParam="1" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1602" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1702" wParam="0" lParam="768" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1701" wParam="0" lParam="1609" sParam="" />
<Action type="0" message="2013" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="2" message="0" wParam="43008" lParam="0" sParam="" />
</Macro>

Macro #2 – HP Inc Download Source Cleanup Part 2 – ALT+F10

<Macro name="HP Inc Download Source Cleanup Part 2" Ctrl="no" Alt="yes" Shift="no" Key="121">
<Action type="3" message="1700" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1601" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="http:" />
<Action type="3" message="1625" wParam="0" lParam="1" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1602" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="\r\nwget -c -N -T 20 -t 20 http:" />
<Action type="3" message="1702" wParam="0" lParam="896" sParam="" />
<Action type="3" message="1701" wParam="0" lParam="1609" sParam="" />
<Action type="0" message="2318" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="1" message="2170" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
<Action type="1" message="2170" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
</Macro>

As always – Use any tips, tricks, or scripts I post at your own risk.

HOWTO: Change a Windows’ network type from Public to Private via PowerShell

Stupid Windows Server 2016…  Stupid Windows 10…  Damn Microsoft…

Ever find yourself with a network interface that is stuck as Public and no obvious way to change it via GUI?

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Five simple PowerShell lines to the rescue!

Get-NetConnectionProfile
$Profile = Get-NetConnectionProfile -InterfaceAlias "interface_alias_name"
$Profile.NetworkCategory = "Private"
Set-NetConnectionProfile -InputObject $Profile
Get-NetConnectionProfile

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And now your network type should be set to Private network.

As always – Use any tips, tricks, or scripts I post at your own risk.

HOWTO: Grab the all file download links on a HP Inc driver download page and wget them

So you have a brand new HP Inc machine to deploy, or you are finally getting around to upgrading to Windows 10…  You’ll need to download the drivers for that machine from HP Inc’s support site.  But you don’t want to use their 2 year old driver pack, kill your internet connection by launching 38 separate downloads at once from your browser, or babysit one or two downloads in the browser at a time (an all day task). Well here is a simple way to grab all the file download links at once and then use wget to sequentially get those files one after another – hands free in a command prompt.  All you need is Notepad++ and a copy of wget.exe somewhere in your machine’s system path.

I’ve had good luck with getting wget from here:  https://eternallybored.org/misc/wget/
And you can install Notepad++ using Ninite’s installer from here:  https://ninite.com/

Extract wget.exe and put it somewhere in your system path (i.e. C:\Windows).

Open your browser of choice, go to the HP Inc driver support download page for the product and OS version you need and then view the page’s source code in your browser (typically accomplished by right clicking the page and selecting “view page source”.

Copy the entire page’s source code (“CTRL + A” then “CTRL + C“) and paste it (“CTRL + V“) into an empty Notepad++ window, then hit “CTRL + H” to open Notepad++’s search/replace dialog box.

Click the “Extended Search Mode” radio button.

Search for: #
Replace with: {blank}
Hit the Replace All button
Tip – press CTRL + A then hit backspace or delete in the Replace with box to blank it’s contents

Search for: \t
Replace with: {blank}
Hit the Replace All button

Search for: ‘”>\r\n
Replace with: \r\n
Hit the Replace All button
Tip – this is an apostrophe, quote, greater than sign, backslash, r, backslash, n

Search for: “>\r\n
Replace with: \r\n
Hit the Replace All button
Tip – this is quote, greater than sign, backslash, r, backslash, n

Search for: obtainSoftware?url=
Replace with: \r\n###
Hit the Replace All button
Hit the Close button (on the replace dialog box)

Press “CTRL + A” to select all text

From the Edit drop down menu, select Blank Operations –> Trim Leading and Trailing Space
From the Edit drop down menu, select Blank Operations –> Remove Empty Lines (Containing blank characters)
From the Edit drop down menu, select Line Operations –> Sort Lines Lexicographically Ascending

Hit “CTRL + Home” to go to the top of the document

You should now see several lines that start with ###6874 – highlight just these lines and copy them with “CTRL + C“, then press “CTRL + N” to create a new document, then press “CTRL + V” to paste the copied lines into the new document.

Hit “CTRL + H” to open the replace dialog box again.

Search for: ###
Replace with: {blank}
Hit the Replace All button
Hit the Close button (on the replace dialog box)

Press “CTRL + A” to select all text

From the Notepad++ Plugins drop down menu at the top of the screen, select Converter –> “HEX -> ASCII”

Hit “CTRL + H” to open the replace dialog box

Search for: http:
Replace with: \r\nwget -c -N -T 20 -t 20 http:
Hit the Replace All button
Hit the Close button (on the replace dialog box)

Hit “CTRL + Home

You should now be left with a bunch of wget lines.

Press “CTRL + A” to select all text
Press “CTRL + C” to call all the text

You should now be able to open a command prompt, change the folder of your choice and right click to paste the whole group of wget commands at once into the command prompt, which will start sequentially downloading the files from HPE or HP Inc, one at a time until all the files have been downloaded.

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Now you are free to go work on something else (or have a coffee, lunch, beer, nap, etc.) while your files are downloaded.

Once all the files are downloaded, in Explorer enable the Product Name and Product Version columns (in detailed view) to determine what each SP file is.  As an added bonus, the original time stamps of the download files are maintained too.

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As always – Use any tips, tricks, or scripts I post at your own risk.