Microsoft Lync 2013 Powershell “no prompt” FIX.

Working with Microsoft Lync on a daily basis, you begin to appreciate all the subtleties of merging Microsoft “quirks” with a phone system.  Although Lync is MUCH more then just a plain old PBX, its intention to replace that device for businesses leave much to be desired for those that enjoyed the old days of a Nortel box, running for years without any intervention, rebooting, or random quirkiness that only the awesomeness of a Microsoft server can bring to the table.

While working on a Lync environment for a customer I noticed that on 2 of the 3 “Front End” boxes that the Lync Powershell program would go to a black box, with a blinking cursor and never give me a prompt to enter anything.  As a matter of fact, I had to keep going only one Lync FE Server to run all my commands.  Some investigating led me to find what I think is a bug in Windows Server 2012 R2.  As a side note – these machines are virtuals on Hyper-V, and running Lync 2013.

For whatever crazy reason, the Lync Powershell applet icon has incorrect/missing quotations.  By repairing the quotations, the PowerShell applet will run correctly every time.  Here is the interesting part.  Once you fix the icon and “correctly” run a PowerShell window – even a “broken” icon will run correctly after that.  Does that make sense?  Very simply, if you run into this problem, just fix the shortcut properties in the Start Screen “All Apps” list (the arrow at the bottom) and it will work fine after that.  Crazy right?  Here are the details….

To get to see the properties of the icon – go to your Start Screen (“metro”), click the down arrow for “all apps”.  Right click the “Lync Server Management Shell” icon, select “Open Containing Folder”.  Then right click the Lync Server Management Shell icon again and select “Properties”.  The “target” line is the one we are concerned with.

The properties of the icon as installed are: (take special note of the use of single and double quotes):

C:\Windows\system32\WindowsPowerShell\v1.0\powershell.exe -noexit -command “cd $env:UserProfile; Import-Module ‘C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Lync Server 2013\Modules\Lync\Lync.psd1′

Note that there isn’t any closing double quote!  By just adding a double quote to the end you might think it would work, but that produces a big red error in the PowerShell window, complaining about the single quote around a file location with a space in it, as you might expect….  So I fixed it like this:

C:\Windows\system32\WindowsPowerShell\v1.0\powershell.exe -noexit -command ‘cd $env:UserProfile; Import-Module “C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Lync Server 2013\Modules\Lync\Lync.psd1″‘

By putting the double quote around the C:\Program Files….. part and changing the existing double quote to single, and closing it with another single quote at the end, then it works fine and PowerShell will run properly after that.

The crazy part is – even if you go and “break” that shortcut again, setting it back to the way it was initially, it will still work fine after you successfully run it once.  I don’t know for how long, or why, but it works!

Thanks Microsoft – for keeping me on my toes.  Hope it helps someone else that had this problem.  Have a good day!

 

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How generic drugs are a symbol of how our society is failing it’s future.

While getting my 30 minutes in on that blasted elliptical machine at the YMCA this morning, channel 7 news was on the TV.  They had a report on how “Americans waste billions each year on brand name pharmaceuticals.”  They proceed to go in depth on how low income people tend to buy brand name drugs and “educated” people tend to buy generics.  That certainly is easy to explain, right?  When you are spending someone else’s money, people seem to always spend more, get nicer things, etc.  Whether we are discussing generic drugs, or someone running making purchases at a big company (as opposed to an entrepreneur buying for his own business), or even my kids when we go to a restaurant.  They always seem to pick the steak, slab of ribs, or fajitas, while I order a $7 burger. I understand that there has to be an “opposite” of that viewpoint, because I recognize we need people that want to lay down in front of a bulldozer that is wrecking a forest,  or keep some corrupt business from burying toxic waste in my backyard just to save a buck.  I get it.  I love that there are lots of smug, arrogant people running around in Toyota Priuses, and riding bicycles 5 wide down St Charles road just to annoy traffic, so that I can drive around in my 15mpg Jeep, and head out with the Jeep club to go drive over stuff that I can’t even walk over.

Anyway – sorry for the ramble.  The REAL message that I heard in that news clip is – “people are foolishly spending money on brand name drugs”  Maybe so.  But – let’s think about that.  This is where today’s society is failing.  People cannot seem to think more then 1 move ahead in the chess game of life.  What is a generic drug?  Its a company that takes another companies research, development, and testing, and copies it.  Where do they think those formulations come from?  Brand name drugs cost more because they did all the work.  Let’s think hypothetically about this.  Suppose everyone saw this news clip and starting buying only generic drugs.  Where would the new drugs come from to be made into generics?  Where would the innovation, the testing, the training, the WORK come from – so that the next miracle drug could be made into a generic.  Here is where our society is failing it’s future.  We need to think more then 1 step ahead.  We need to think about how today’s actions will affect EVERYONE’s future.  if we don’t – we are doomed to enter another dark age.  An age where people are so wrapped up in fighting with each other – concerned about race, religion, fighting over a piece of land, or a piece of bread.  So, its not like Im on a campaign to get rid of generic drugs, but its foolish to take all the money spent on brand name drugs, add it up, and call it the “waste” of money on the morning news.  Like all things, it needs to be in balance.  Plenty of people need to buy the brand name to keep the innovation and invention of America moving forward.  And those that can only afford generic drugs, well, they can share in the benefits of those that bought the brand name ones.  And instead of calling them “foolish” on the news – they should thank them for providing the jobs and funding for the next generation of medications.  Have a great week, and be safe people!

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Do the latest insurance company commercials infuriate you too?

Have you seen these insurance commercials lately?  The ones where they show someone watching as the neighbor cuts a tree limb that goes through the roof of his car, or a semi truck backing up and smashing someone’s car?  Or the moron that drove into the lake and is standing on the roof (Notice, he is dry.  Was he riding the roof into the lake?)  Those commercials infuriate me to say the least.  Maybe most people don’t pay attention – but I always felt insurance was reserved for accidents – or at least not for cases of gross negligence and stupidity.  See – as the world seems to promote stupidity (i.e. Reality TV, celebrity behavior, no accountability, etc) it seems to be “accepted” that – “Oh well, Im a moron and just cut down the limb of a tree OVER someone else’s car, and “OOPS” – hey insurance – just pay for it!”  Well, see – that’s ME (and you!) paying for it….  And that further propagates the stupidity.  If there are cases of gross negligence like that – I don’t think insurance should pay – the person should pay themselves.  They just might think twice next time and look under the tree before they start cutting limbs off of it.  They just might think they should securely mount the air conditioner to their apartment window.  That one REALLY gets me – what if that was a person walking by?  And how did the air conditioner “fall” out the window, but move over away from the building at least 3 feet to hit the car instead of the sidewalk below it?

My wife says sometimes I read into things too much, and I have a knack for noticing weird things – maybe so – but I still keep trying to cling to trying to make common sense common again….  Help me people….   Be safe – and have a great weekend!

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New Blog started!

Well,

I have been told by many people that I write extremely well, and questioning why i do not have a blog.  Truth be told, I just hadn’t thought about it very much.  With running from one thing to the next, it never occurred to me to sit down and write about some of the weird and often seemingly interesting perspective on life, love, family, society, and technology.  So.  Here I am as I embark on my virgin blogging experience (that probably should have happened in 2003), and if you have found yourself here – sit back, relax, and enjoy…..  Or hold on tight and start screaming – whatever feels better!

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