Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Leadership skills you actually need.

I was reading my linkdin feed today and noticed a plethora of articles reading like this
  • 6 Things a leader never does.
  • 5 Habits all leaders have
  • One thing all Leaders have in common.
  • Etc. Etc.
The issue I have with these articles is they assume that leadership in and of itself is the end goal.  And for a manager stuck in middle management dreaming of the CEO's car parking space, it sounds very enticing.  I check off the habits that leaders have and I become a leader.  

Here is the one thing that all these articles forget.  A leader is a leader because something is following them.  Yes there are a bunch of techniques that will improve the chances of people following you, but the thing to remember is to go somewhere.

Do something awesome.  The person that creates something new is a greater leader than the person who herds people round in circles.

Go.  Be Awesome.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Asking for .hlp

The package I am currently working on has a .hlp file that needs opening so people can, well, get help.  Now because the .hlp standard is flawed with some insecurities that would allow people to redirect around security to get at stuff, Microsoft decided to only include the executable to read these as an optional extra.

In a .msu file

That only runs when the Windows Update service is running

That service you switch off so you can get a vanilla box to package on


You can switch it on and off. at will, and it seems to work for sliding it into the App-V bubble.  Hooray.

Turn's out this doesn't work.  Will keep this post updated as I look for answers.

I figured it out.  It's a bit of a pa-lava but it's definitely possible to bubble this bad boy.

Grab the .msu from the link. then pop it open using the cmd command

expand F:* windows6.1-KB917607-x86.msu C:\Temp\winhlp32

Now you fire up AppV sequencer and follow the steps below in your bubble

This will grab you a whole directory of joy.   Now you are going to have to do some ownership grabbing of the following files.  If you need help, click here.

  • C:\Windows\winhlp32.exe
  • C:\Windows\System32\ftsrch.dll
  • C:\Windows\EN-US\winhlp32.exe.mui
  • C:\Windows\EN-US\ftsrch.dll.mui

Copy the files below over their counterparts above.

  • C:\Temp\winhlp32\x86_microsoft-windows-winhstb.resources_31bf3856ad364e35_50.1.7600.16386_none_da3d517bf9765116\winhlp32.exe
  • C:\Temp\winhlp32\x86_microsoft-windows-winhstb.resources_31bf3856ad364e35_50.1.7600.16386_none_da3d517bf9765116\ftsrch.dll
  • C:\Temp\winhlp32\x86_microsoft-windows-winhstb.resources_31bf3856ad364e35_50.1.7600.16386_en-us_83921ac31ded8ee9\winhlp32.exe.mui

  • C:\Temp\winhlp32\x86_microsoft-windows-winhstb.resources_31bf3856ad364e35_50.1.7600.16386_en-us_83921ac31ded8ee9\ftsrch.dll.mui
And... now you have help in a bubble.  Standard cleanups apply.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

App-V and permissions

App-V Version 5 now respects permissions.  Hooray.  When dealing with legacy apps that write stuff wherever the hell they want to, keep this in mind.

Also works with setting rights on virtual services.  When capturing, use subinacl.  (Available here)

It works a treat. :-)

App-V stole my shortcuts!

Being quite new to the App-V packaging world, I ran into an issue that I figured I'd share so others can

  1. Laugh at how silly I am, and
  2. Help out others in the same predicament
I was packaging up an application using Microsoft Application Virtualization Sequencer and all was good.  All the pieces from the MSI I was using were dropping into the correct place.  "Happy" thought I.  "I shall have this package ready for testing by luncheon today"

I install it onto a clean machine, and all is right with the world.  So I publish via the publisher.

I get the advertised icons on my start menu.  But do they do anything?  Nooooooo.  Badness.

I spend a while Google problem, try random fix, hope.

Anyways what I had not done was edited the package in the sequencer, gone into the Advanced Tab and ticked the boxes
  • Allow all named objects to interact with the local system
  • Allow all COM objects to interact with the local system
  • Allow virtual applications full write permissions to the virtual file system
Save, Publish and Happiness.

App-V versus error 142

For the last month or so I have been working with App-V and have had a series of issues that no one on the web seems to want to talk about. First of all,

Error 0x00000142 

Conventional wisdom says

But I have found at least one case where the above error is caused by Empty directories.  Fortunately this is easy to fix by placing a dummy file in the empty directory in the bubble.  Remind me to report this to the good people at Microsoft for some cool merch.


I have been randomly deleting files from the Package\Root\VFS directory since this seems to be the main culprit.  Basically, if it's empty, it can go.  Also, anything with the extension .msi can be deleted on principal.

Anything else in the Package\Root directory should probably use dummy folders.

As I learn more I'll keep all 3 of you posted.