Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview 5 Released

Good news, on Wednesday April 29, 2016, Windows Server 2016 TP5 finally hit the web. That means we’re one step closer to the final RTM version.

Note: TP5 comes in 3 flavors – Windows Server, Hyper-V Server & Server Essentials.

Here are a bunch of resources to get you started:

Technet (Registration Required)

Technet – Windows Server 2016 TP5 (x64)
Standard Key: MFY9F-XBN2F-TYFMP-CCV49-RMYVH
Datacenter Key: 6XBNX-4JQGW-QX6QG-74P76-72V67
ISO: 4.8 GB
Nano / VHD: 574 MB
Download: Click here

Technet – Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2016 TP5 (x64)
Key: Not Required
ISO: 2.4 GB
Download: Click here

Technet – Windows Server 2016 Essentials TP5 (x64)
Key: NYK9H-Y2FDB-2XKGC-F2XHK-WTT88
ISO: 4.3 GB
Download: Click here

MSDN (MSDN Subscription Required)

MSDN – Windows Server 2016 TP5 (x64)
ISO: 5.0 GB
Download: Click here

MSDN – Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2016 TP5 (x64)
ISO 2.4 GB
Download: Click here

MSDN – Windows Server 2016 Essentials TP5 (x64)
ISO: 4.3 GB
Download: Click here

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Download – Advanced Group Policy Management 4.0

Title: Advanced Group Policy Management 4.0 Documents
Published: 04/22/2016
Publisher: Microsoft Corporation 
Version: 1.0
Files: 6
Download URL: Click here for download

DESCRIPTION

These guides provide an overview of Advanced Group Policy Management (AGPM) 4.0 and step-by-step guidance for installing AGPM 4.0, managing Group Policy objects (GPOs) by using AGPM 4.0, and planning and deploying AGPM 4.0.

FILES

  • Overview of Microsoft Advanced Group Policy Management: Overview of AGPM and describes its benefits, how it works, and the next steps for evaluating it. This document is designed for people evaluating AGPM.
    AGPM40_Overview.docx (1.2 MB)
  • Step-by-Step Guide for Microsoft Advanced Group Policy Management 4.0: This guide describes a sample scenario for installing AGPM and performing Group Policy management by using the Group Policy Management Console and AGPM. Designed for people are evaluating AGPM 4.0 and for Group Policy administrators who are installing AGPM 4.0 or are using AGPM 4.0 for the first time.
    AGPM40_Step-by-Step_Guide.docx (115 KB)
    AGPM40_Step-by-Step_Guide.pdf (3007 KB)
  • Operations Guide for Advanced Group Policy Management 4.0: This guide provides step-by-step instructions for performing tasks by using AGPM 4.0. It includes all of the information in the Help for AGPM. This guide is designed for Group Policy administrators of all levels who are using AGPM 4.0.
    AGPM40_OperationsGuide.docx (177 KB)
    AGPM40_OperationsGuide.pdf (999 KB)
  • Planning Guide for Advanced Group Policy Management 4.0: This guide provides an in-depth description of the processes, procedures, and decisions for planning the deployment of AGPM in a production environment.
    AGPM40_PlanningGuide.docx (173 KB)
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Download – Free Server 2016 Technical Preview eBook

Title: Introducing Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview
Authors: John McCabe and the Windows Server team 
Published: April 20, 2016
Publisher: Microsoft Press
ISBN: 978-0-7356-9773-7
Pages: 176
Price: FREE
Download URL: Click here for download

E-BOOK FORMATS

  • 697737_ebook_TechPreview.pdf (9.32 MB)
  • 697737_ebook_mobile_TechPreview.pdf (6.67 MB)

DESCRIPTION

Get a head start evaluating Windows Server 2016—guided by the experts. Based on Technical Preview 4, John McCabe and the Windows Server team introduce the new features and capabilities, with practical insights on how Windows Server 2016 can meet the needs of your business. Get the early, high-level overview you need to begin preparing your deployment now!

CHAPTERS

  1. The software-defined datacenter
  2. Compute
  3. Storage
  4. Networking
  5. Security
  6. App Plat
  7. Systems management
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OS Version Queries for WMI Filters

NOTE: Updated Jan 19, 2016 to include Windows 10 / Windows Server 2016

More likely than not, if you’re using Group Policy to push out software installation or registry entries to client machines or servers on the domain, the policy may be different depending on the OS version or architecture.

Examples, Group Policy Objects may need to be filtered by:

  • Desktop / Server
  • Domain Controller / Non-Domain Controller
  • 32-bit / 64-bit

If you haven’t used WMI filters before, they show up in Group Policy Management at the bottom, between Group Policy Objects and Starter GPOs.

Common OS WMI Filters

The WMI filters use a query to scope down the application of the Group Policy Object applicability. Here’s what a typical WMI OS filter looks like:

WMI filter

select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.1%" AND ProductType="1" AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"

WMI Win32_OperatingSystem ProductType Tips:

ProductType 1 = Desktop OS

ProductType 2 = Server OS – Domain Controller

ProductType 3 = Server OS – Not a Domain Controller

WMI Win32_OperatingSystem Version Number Tips:

5.1 – Windows XP

5.2 – Windows Server 2003

5.2.3 – Windows Server 2003 R2

6.0 – Windows Vista & Windows Server 2008

6.1 – Windows 7 & Windows Server 2008 R2

6.2 – Windows 8 & Windows Server 2012

6.3 – Windows 8.1 & Windows Server 2012 R2

10.0 – Windows 10 & Windows Server 2016

To create your own WMI filters, here is an updated list of WMI filter queries from Window XP – Windows 10 and from Server 2003 to Server 2016.

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER:
Always test your Group Policies and WMI filters before deploying.

DESKTOPS

ANY WINDOWS DESKTOP OS
  • Any Windows Desktop OS – Version 1
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE ProductType = "1"
  • Any Windows Desktop OS – Version 2 (better for Win7 sometimes)
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE (ProductType <> "2") AND (ProductType <> "3")
  • Any Windows Desktop OS – 32-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE ProductType = "1" AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Any Windows Desktop OS – 64-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE ProductType = "1" AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
WINDOWS XP
  • Windows XP
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE (Version like "5.1%" or Version like "5.2%") AND ProductType="1"
  • Windows XP – 32-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE (Version like "5.1%" or Version like "5.2%") AND ProductType="1" AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Windows XP – 64-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE (Version like "5.1%" or Version like "5.2%") AND ProductType="1" AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
WINDOWS VISTA
  • Windows Vista
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.0%" AND ProductType="1"
  • Windows Vista – 32-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.0%" AND ProductType="1" AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Windows Vista – 64-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.0%" AND ProductType="1" AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
WINDOWS 7
  • Windows 7
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.1%" AND ProductType="1"
  • Windows 7 – 32-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.1%" AND ProductType="1" AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Windows 7 – 64-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.1%" AND ProductType="1" AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
WINDOWS 8
  • Windows 8
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.2%" AND ProductType="1"
  • Windows 8 – 32-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.2%" AND ProductType="1" AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Windows 8 – 64-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.2%" AND ProductType="1" AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
WINDOWS 8.1
  • Windows 8.1
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.3%" AND ProductType="1"
  • Windows 8.1 – 32-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.3%" AND ProductType="1" AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Windows 8.1 – 64-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.3%" AND ProductType="1" AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
WINDOWS 10
  • Windows 10
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "10.0%" AND ProductType="1"
  • Windows 10 – 32-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "10.0%" AND ProductType="1" AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Windows 10 – 64-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "10.0%" AND ProductType="1" AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"

SERVERS

ANY WINDOWS SERVER OS
  • Any Windows Server OS
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem where (ProductType = "2") OR (ProductType = "3")
  • Any Windows Server OS – 32-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem where (ProductType = "2") OR (ProductType = "3") AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Any Windows Server OS – 64-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem where (ProductType = "2") OR (ProductType = "3") AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Any Windows Server – Domain Controller
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem where (ProductType = "2")
  • Any Windows Server – Domain Controller – 32-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem where (ProductType = "2") AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Any Windows Server – Domain Controller – 64-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem where (ProductType = "2") AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Any Windows Server – Non-Domain Controller
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem where (ProductType = "3")
  • Any Windows Server – Non- Domain Controller – 32-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem where (ProductType = "3") AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Any Windows Server – Non-Domain Controller – 64-bit
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem where (ProductType = "3") AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
WINDOWS SERVER 2003
  • Windows Server 2003 – DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "5.2%" AND ProductType="2"
  • Windows Server 2003 – non-DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "5.2%" AND ProductType="3"
  • Windows Server 2003 – 32-bit – DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "5.2%" AND ProductType="2" AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Windows Server 2003 – 32-bit – non-DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "5.2%" AND ProductType="3" AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Windows Server 2003 – 64-bit – DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "5.2%" AND ProductType="2" AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Windows Server 2003 – 64-bit – non-DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "5.2%" AND ProductType="3" AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
WINDOWS SERVER 2003 R2
  • Windows Server 2003 R2 – DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "5.2.3%" AND ProductType="2"
  • Windows Server 2003 R2 – non-DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "5.2.3%" AND ProductType="3"
  • Windows Server 2003 R2 – 32-bit – DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "5.2.3%" AND ProductType="2" AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Windows Server 2003 R2 – 32-bit – non-DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "5.2.3%" AND ProductType="3" AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Windows Server 2003 R2 – 64-bit – DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "5.2.3%" AND ProductType="2" AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Windows Server 2003 R2 – 64-bit – non-DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "5.2.3%" AND ProductType="3" AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
WINDOWS SERVER 2008
  • Windows Server 2008DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.0%" AND ProductType="2"
  • Windows Server 2008 – non-DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.0%" AND ProductType="3"
  • Windows Server 2008 – 32-bit – DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.0%" AND ProductType="2" AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Windows Server 2008 – 32-bit – non-DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.0%" AND ProductType="3" AND NOT OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Windows Server 2008 – 64-bit – DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.0%" AND ProductType="2" AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
  • Windows Server 2008 – 64-bit – non-DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.0%" AND ProductType="3" AND OSArchitecture = "64-bit"
WINDOWS SERVER 2008 R2
  • Windows Server 2008 R2 – 64-bit – DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.1%" AND ProductType="2"
  • Windows Server 2008 R2 – 64-bit – non-DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.1%" AND ProductType="3"
WINDOWS SERVER 2012
  • Windows Server 2012 – 64-bit – DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.2%" AND ProductType="2"
  • Windows Server 2012 – 64-bit – non-DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.2%" AND ProductType="3"
WINDOWS SERVER 2012 R2
  • Windows Server 2012 R2 – 64-bit – DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.3%" AND ProductType="2"
  • Windows Server 2012 R2 – 64-bit – non-DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "6.3%" AND ProductType="3"
WINDOWS SERVER 2016
  • Windows Server 2016 – 64-bit – DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "10.0%" AND ProductType="2"
  • Windows Server 2016 – 64-bit – non-DC
    select * from Win32_OperatingSystem WHERE Version like "10.0%" AND ProductType="3"
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You Lost the BitLocker Recovery Key?

Today I was asked for the BitLocker Recovery Key for a previous client. Since they’re not my client anymore that’s information that I don’t (and wouldn’t want to) have in my possession.

That begs the question;

“What do you do if you lost (or if nobody documented) the BitLocker Recovery Key”?

If you have administrator access to the running server, obtaining the key can be done from an Administrative Command Prompt with manage-bde.exe.

GETTING HELP

Typing the name of the executable with no parameters outputs the help file.

manage-bde

BitLocker Drive Encryption: Configuration Tool version 6.1.7601
Copyright (C) Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

manage-bde[.exe] -parameter [arguments]

Description:
    Configures BitLocker Drive Encryption on disk volumes.

Parameter List:
    -status     Provides information about BitLocker-capable volumes.
    -on         Encrypts the volume and turns BitLocker protection on.
    -off        Decrypts the volume and turns BitLocker protection off.
    -pause      Pauses encryption or decryption.
    -resume     Resumes encryption or decryption.
    -lock       Prevents access to BitLocker-encrypted data.
    -unlock     Allows access to BitLocker-encrypted data.
    -autounlock Manages automatic unlocking of data volumes.
    -protectors Manages protection methods for the encryption key.
    -tpm        Configures the computer’s Trusted Platform Module (TPM).
    -SetIdentifier or -si
                Configures the identification field for a volume.
    -ForceRecovery or -fr
                Forces a BitLocker-protected OS to recover on restarts.
    -changepassword
                Modifies password for a data volume.
    -changepin  Modifies PIN for a volume.
    -changekey  Modifies startup key for a volume.
    -upgrade    Upgrades the BitLocker version.
    -ComputerName or -cn
                Runs on another computer. Examples: "ComputerX", "127.0.0.1"
    -? or /?    Displays brief help. Example: "-ParameterSet -?"
    -Help or -h Displays complete help. Example: "-ParameterSet -h"

Examples:
    manage-bde -status
    manage-bde -on C: -RecoveryPassword -RecoveryKey F:\
    manage-bde -unlock E: -RecoveryKey F:\84E151C1…7A62067A512.bek

CHECKING DRIVE STATUS

To check the BitLocker status of all drives, type:

manage-bde -status

BitLocker Drive Encryption: Configuration Tool version 6.1.7601
Copyright (C) Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

Disk volumes that can be protected with
BitLocker Drive Encryption:
Volume E: [BARRETT]
[Data Volume]

    Size:                 14.50 GB
    BitLocker Version:    None
    Conversion Status:    Fully Decrypted
    Percentage Encrypted: 0%
    Encryption Method:    None
    Protection Status:    Protection Off
    Lock Status:          Unlocked
    Identification Field: None
    Automatic Unlock:     Disabled
    Key Protectors:       None Found

Volume G: [BARRETT32GB]
[Data Volume]

    Size:                 29.02 GB
    BitLocker Version:    None
    Conversion Status:    Fully Decrypted
    Percentage Encrypted: 0%
    Encryption Method:    None
    Protection Status:    Protection Off
    Lock Status:          Unlocked
    Identification Field: None
    Automatic Unlock:     Disabled
    Key Protectors:       None Found

Note: You may notice in the above example that the C: volume is not shown. That’s because on this PC BitLocker has not been setup yet.

OBTAINING AN EXISTING RECOVERY KEY

To output the key to the screen, just type the following:

manage-bde -protectors c: -get

(*Or whatever drive letter for which you need the key).

HOW DOES THAT WORK?

If you would like to know about the protectors and get flags, type:

manage-bde -protectors -get -h

Or you can check out more info on TechNet
https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff829848.aspx

I hope that helps!

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Download – Windows Security Audit Events Spreadsheet

Title: Windows Security Audit Events Spreadsheet
Published: 12/02/2015
Publisher: Microsoft Corporation 
Version: November 2015
File name: WindowsSecurityAuditEvents.xlsx
Size: 70 KB
Download URL: Click here for download

Pop Quiz:

1) What’s the Event ID for an Account Lockout?

2) What about the Event ID denoting that permissions were changed on an object?

3) Or the Event ID for locking or unlocking a workstation?

Don’t worry, I can’t remember those off the top of my head either. And that usually means sifting through bookmarked links, PDFs or hitting Google to look it up.

Fortunately, Microsoft has an Excel spreadsheet detailing 412 different Event IDs related to Windows Security Audit Events. Those 400+ Event IDs are broken up into the following nine categories:

  • Account Logon
  • Account Management
  • Detailed Tracking
  • DS Access
  • Logon/Logoff
  • Object Access
  • Policy Change
  • Privilege Use
  • System

The spreadsheet also contains a tab with a complete description of the event message. This is a great tool for creating event monitors. Download and enjoy!

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Windows Server 2012 and R2 Locks and Limits

The question came up today about using Windows Server Essentials as a RADIUS server. Part of the consideration involves the arbitrary restrictions placed on the OS. Microsoft differentiates the server products with what are affectionately know as “Locks and Limits”.

Most folks in IT are aware of OS limits like the number of users in Windows Server or not being able to RDP into Windows 7 Home Edition. But there are other less-obvious limits like RAM or IAS, RRAS & SMB connection limits.

Fortunately there are two handy spreadsheets that detail the Limits, Roles & Features that are (or are not) available in Windows Server 2012 & R2 Editions.

Windows Server 2012 R2 Locks and Limits

Windows Server 2012 R2 Locks & Limits
File: Windows Server 2012 R2 Products and Editions Comparison.pdf (222 KB)
URL: http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=41703

  • Windows Server 2012 R2 Datacenter
  • Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard
  • Windows Server 2012 R2 Essentials
  • Windows Server 2012 R2 Foundation
  • Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2012 R2
  • Windows Storage Server 2012 R2 Standard
  • Windows Storage Server 2012 R2 Workgroup

Windows Server 2012 Locks & Limits
File: Windows Server 2012 Products and Editions Comparison.pdf (226 KB)
URL: http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=38809

  • Windows Server 2012 Datacenter
  • Windows Server 2012 Standard
  • Windows Server 2012 Essentials
  • Windows Server 2012 Foundation
  • Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2012
  • Windows Storage Server 2012 Standard
  • Windows Storage Server 2012 Workgroup
  • Windows MultiPoint Server 2012 Premium
  • Windows MultiPoint Server 2012 Standard

Currently, there is no word yet on Windows Server 2016 since it’s still in Technical Preview at this time. However, once the licensing folks figure out how to squeeze every penny out of Server 2016 (I’m very interested to see what they do with Nano Edition) there should be an updated spreadsheet released.

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Download – Group Policy Settings for Server 2016 TP4

Title: Group Policy Settings Reference for Windows and Windows Server
Version: July 2015 (Updated for Server 2016 TP4)
Published: 11/23/2015
Download: http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=25250
File names:

  • TP4 Policy Settings Spreadsheet.xlsx (654 KB)
  • Windows 10 ADMX spreadsheet.xlsx (654 KB)
  • Windows 8.1 Update and Windows Server 2012 R2 Update 1.xlsx (788 KB)
  • WindowsServer2003SP2GroupPolicySettings.xls (3.9 MB)
  • WindowsServer2008andWindowsVistaSP1GroupPolicySettings.xlsx (512 KB)
  • WindowsServer2008R2andWindows7GroupPolicySettings.xlsx (612 KB)
  • WindowsServer2012andWindows8GroupPolicySettings.xlsx (690 KB)
  • WindowsServer2012R2andWindows8.1GroupPolicySettings.xlsx (628 KB)
  • WindowsServer2012R2UpdateGroupPolicySettings.xlsx (634 KB)
  • WindowsVistaGroupPolicySettings.xls (1.9 MB)

Description

These spreadsheets list the policy settings for computer and user configurations that are included in the Administrative template files delivered with the Windows operating systems specified. You can configure these policy settings when you edit Group Policy Objects.

 

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Cannot Login to Skype on Windows Server 2016 TP3

While kicking the tires on a Windows Server 2016 TP3 virtual machine in Microsoft Azure, I decided to try and install Skype. (Not recommended – I know).

The Skype 7.14 application installed just fine, but when I tried to login to Skype with my Windows Live ID I received the following error message:

“Your browser is currently set to block cookies. Your browser must allow cookies before you can use a Microsoft account.”

At first I thought the error message was related to Microsoft Edge, since you’re not allowed to run Edge with the default (500) Administrator account. Logging in with a different account didn’t resolve the error either.

Enabled Cookies in IE 11, still no joy.

THE FIX

I added http://skype.com and https://skype.com to trusted sites in IE 11, then I could login to Skype.

Internet Explorer | Internet Options | Security | Trusted Sites | Sites

It’s a pretty simple fix in hindsight, but one that isn’t blatantly obvious at first.

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CSI: Hyper-V – Episode 1

On the next CSI: Hyper-V

The I.T. team travels through NET TIME to save an innocent virtual machine.

CSI-Hyper-V

(No, I don’t know why I do this stuff. It just pops in my head…)

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