Security Compliance Manager 4.0 – Download Resources

Back in July 2016 Microsoft released Security Compliance Manager 4.0 with support for Windows 10 and Server 2016. For some reason (at the moment) it seems to be hard to find so here are all the bits one might need to get started.

Solution Accelerator Article about SCM4:
Security Compliance Manager (SCM)

A TechNet blog announcing SCM4 availability:
Security Compliance Manager 4.0 now available for download!

An article about the security baselines available and links to download them:
Windows Security Baselines

Download: Windows 10, version 1607 and Windows Server 2016 security baseline
Download: Microsoft Security Compliance Manager 4.0

SQL is needed to install it (yay) and it comes with SQL Express 2008, but here’s a link to SQL 2016 Developer with SP1, which is free now:
MSDN article: Developer Guides for SQL Server
Download: SQL Server Management Studio 16.5.3
Download: SQL 2016 Developer with SP1 (2,590MB ISO)

 

Orca 5 for Windows 8

Now that Windows 8 has hit RTM there is a slightly newer version of Orca the MSI editing tool available. This one is version 5.0.9200.0, but when it’s installed, in the Programs and Features dialog it’ll show up as 8.59.25584.

To grab yourself a copy get the Windows SDK for Windows 8, install using the option to ‘download for installation on a separate computer‘, and make sure only ‘Windows Software Development Kit‘ is selected in the features list. You won’t be able to de-select the .NET 4 download.

After your download is complete you can either install Orca from the download directory, or collect up the files you need to keep a copy for use later on. The files you’ll need are listed here and are linked directly to Microsoft download location for ease of collection:

a35cd6c9233b6ba3da66eecaa9190436.cab
fe38b2fd0d440e3c6740b626f51a22fc.cab
Orca-x86_en-us.msi

To install Orca just double-click on Orca-x86_en-us.msi and allow it to install. Job done!

Long startup and logon delays with a shared Windows 7 desktop

I’m writing with reference to a colleague’s blog post where he has found a very useful fix for a very annoying start up and log-on delay issue in Windows 7 SP1. Here’s his post, worth a read:
http://blog.solarfusion.co.uk/2011/12/windows-7-please-wait-or-welcome-screen.html

We were finding that computers in shared areas which had been logged on by many users (i.e. 50+ user profiles) were experiencing massive delays starting up and logging on. Until he found the fix the only solution was to leave the computers on all the time, or get them to start up really early in the morning.

One fix we tried was removing all the user profiles from the computers, and this only worked some of the time. Then my colleague found the right hot-fix and all of a sudden our startup and logon times dropped back to a few minutes. Big relief!

Here’s the relevant hotfix: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2617858

See the blog entry (linked above) for a detailed explanation.

Orca 5 – msi editing tool for Windows 7

I finally realised where to get hold of version 5 of Orca – the one most suitable for Windows 7 able to validate .msi files for Windows Installer 5. It was of course in the Windows SDK for Windows 7 and .NET Framework 4. Unfortunately there’s no mini-download for the msi sdk like with version 4.5, so for simplicity I’ve acquired the .msi for orca and put it online for download…

Orca 5.0.7693.0 (2.1MB)

If you would rather download the official version from Microsoft you need to install the debugging tools from the Windows SDK, then go in to Program Files\Windows SDK\7.1\Bin and orca.msi will be in there.

[Update 2012-09-08: there’s now a slightly newer version available here]