THIS SITE HAS MOVED

My needs for a blog have out grown what a live space can do so I am moving my blog over to a hosted WordPress solution.

To find all my Group Policy related material over to the web site http://www.grouppolicy.biz

All my other IT related blog post can be found at http://www.smartergeek.info

So please update you RSS feeds to the new sites and thanks for visiting this site over the past 18months.

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My new Group Policy Web site www.grouppolicy.biz

I have just setup a new web site called “Group Policy Center” that you can see at http://www.grouppolicy.biz this site is now where I am going to post all my tutorials and news articles. I have also migrated all my existing Group Policy articles on this site over this site so you don’t have to keep coming back to this web site.

However this site is not going away so please don’t delete it from your favourites as I still plan to use this site for all my non-group policy relates tech news and information…

If you are interested in Group Policy please add http://feeds.feedburner.com/GroupPolicyCenter to your RSS reader.

My Microsoft Project Natal Predictions

Well 2010 (pronounced “twenty ten”) has rolled around and now I can say that this year Project Natal will be coming out for the Xbox 360. WOOHOO!!

So with the impending release of Natal for the Xbox 360 this year I have been thinking about this device some what and here are some predictions I have about the device…

Natal will be for the Xbox 360 and for Windows. Project Natal is probably going to be a USB device (see cable from the device below) as this would be the most convenient way to provide power and data to the camera/microphone array. Now granted this might be a wireless device for the Xbox 360 like the standard controllers and that cable might be a power lead but if this is true you could still connect it to a PC via the USB Xbox 360 Wireless receiver.

Project_Natal_Camera

So if you can connect the Natal to a PC this would be a way of providing 3D motion capture, facial recognition, voice recognition using the cameras and acoustic source localization and ambient noise suppression via its microphones. These sorts of capabilities would greatly help Microsoft implement NUI interface to Windows  like the Microsoft Office Labs 2019 Video that was released early last year…  See about 1 minute 30 seconds.

 

So imagine being able to sit down at your computer and have it recognise to who you are and log you on with you face and a voice print identification then use your hand to move around and organise the windows on your screen…. The future is here (soon)…

My other prediction for Project Natal is that it will enable new gaming titles such as Dance Hero which could be done via a full body motion capture dance. This is something that has been done before but it does away with the tacky floor pads (see image below) that were previously needed to make this work.

tvdancepad

Group Policy Setting of the Week 8 – Group Policy refresh interval for computers

This weeks (and first for the year) Group Policy Setting of the Week is a Group Policy setting that configures Group Policy. The “Group Policy refresh interval for computers” can be found under Computer Configuration > Policies > Administrative Templates > System > Group Policy and is used to control how often the background computer refresh interval of a performed.

image

By default the refresh will happen every 90 minutes however it has a 30 minute random offset so it could potentially take between 1 to 2 hours for a policy refresh to occur. Keep in mind however that if configured the policy refresh to a shorter interval it will potentially not take affect to all your computers until the longest refresh interval of the last refresh interval setting. Normally this setting it set to a short interval before a major change to group policy setting is made to an SOE so that any rollback of the change can be implemented faster (example see How to use Group Policy Preferences to set change Passwords).

How to automatically patch Adobe Reader

Now that Microsoft security initiates are paying off and Windows and Internet Explorer more secure that the rivals. It seems that hackers are changing their focus as McAfee labs have said “Adobe product exploitation will likely surpass that of Microsoft Office applications in 2010.”. What is even more disturbing is that these security issues are platform independent which makes any security vulnerability even more appealing as it will work on multiple platforms (Windows and OSX).

In response to all the security issues that have recently come out for Adobe products they announced that they will be releasing security patches second Tuesday of the first month of every quarter unless the patch is deemed to be critical enough to release an out of cycle update… GREAT!!! Why they don’t just say second Tuesday of every month like Microsoft does so that all these patches can be released together is beyond me but at least its a start.

Problem is there was for a long time no way to automatically update these products as WSUS and Windows Update support updates of Adobe products. This often results in companies in having to manually patch the software via sneaker net or worse not at all leaving some gaping security holes on their computers.

Thankfully Adobe with the latest release of Adobe Reader 9.2.0 now supports Automatic Installation of updates. To enable this option you need to select “Automatically install updates” option under the "Updater” categories under Preferences menu option.

Adobe Automatic Update

For large scale enterprises this option is still not an practical option however for the mum and dad and SOHO’s this will at least mean they no longer need to manually check for updates every month to stay secure.

For more information on Adobe Reader Security Issues Details see: