ConfigMGr MPControl.log: Call to HttpSendRequestSync failed for port 443 with status code 403, text: Forbidden

I was working in my Hyper-V lab this morning trying to PXE boot a client VM into a ConfigMgr Task Sequence but somehow things had just stopped working, overnight.  SMSPXE.log was showing me this;

sending with winhttp failed; 80072f8f
Failed to get information for MP: https://CON-CM1.contoso.local. 80072f8f.
PXE::DB_InitializeTransport failed; 0x80004005
Unspecified error (Error: 80004005; Source: Windows)

My MPControl.log had also, within minutes, gone from this (working);

>>> Selected Certificate [Thumbprint 37d4c9502df29c6780a456597b5088d569ceca6b] issued to 'CON-CM1.contoso.local' for HTTPS Client Authentication
Call to HttpSendRequestSync succeeded for port 443 with status code 200, text: OK

to this (broken);

>>> Selected Certificate [Thumbprint 37d4c9502df29c6780a456597b5088d569ceca6b] issued to 'CON-CM1.contoso.local' for HTTPS Client Authentication
Call to HttpSendRequestSync failed for port 443 with status code 403, text: Forbidden

So what happened here?

First things, I wanted to isolate if this was a problem with the Management Point component or the PKI setup – so I simply set the Management Point role to run as HTTP only.  Within minutes I was seeing a working management point in the MPControl.log – so it was certificate related.

I looked on my Windows Server 2008 R2 Certificate Authority and there were no certificate revocations.  Maybe the client certificate is a bit screwed up I thought – so I deleted the Client Authentication Certificate from the Personal Store on the Management Point and tried to request a new one from the CA but received a failure that the Certificate Revocation Server was unavailable.  Weird.  A quick visit back to the CA and I stopped and restarted the CA service and tried the request again from the MP and it went through fine.

I changed the Management Point back to HTTPS and again within a few minutes I was seeing a working Management Point again in the MPControl.log.

Just goes to show that it isn’t always (actually, it isn’t USUALLY) Configuration Manager that is to blame when things aren’t working correctly.


ConfigMgr 2012: Cumulative Update 1 for System Center 2012 Configuration Manager

Somehow, I missed the release of this completely!

This Cumulative Update contains several fixes – but primarily I needed it to fix an Asset Intelligence Point which wouldn’t synchronise due to an expired certificate.

PITA – ATI Catalyst Drivers Installation

I love manufacturers who stubbornly refuse to conform to Industry standards for Driver and software Deployment.  ATI and NVidia are two such culprits who make the installation of drivers for their products using widely used deployment tools a royal pain in the arse.  The driver .inf files can be easily extracted from the vendor supplied software, however when installed using Driver Injection and Plug and Play during Windows Setup they are not ‘completely’ installed and if the first user of the system is not an administrator they will receive a prompt for elevation to complete the install.  This is unacceptable guys!

So, we have to work with the vendor supplied drivers in the format they were provided and using whatever silent/unattended methods they provide.  ATI do not make this particularly easy with their Catalyst drivers as they use an installer technology called ‘Monet’ – nope, I never heard of it either.  There seems to be multiple ways to start the installation routine too; Setup.exe, ATISetup.exe and InstallManagerApp.exe – so what do we use?

After several hours of mucking around trying to get one of these to install the drivers during a task sequence, I can proudly put my name to a command line that actually works!  If you create a standard package that contains the extracted files from the vendor supplied install files and create an ‘install.cmd’ file that contains the following;


Create a program that runs the ‘install.cmd’ file (Run Hidden, Whether or not a user is logged on, Allow TS Deployment) and add this as an ‘Install Package’ Step to your Task Sequence.  You should enable the ‘Continue On Error’ option on this step, as the ATI installer will exit with a non-zero exitcode even if the drivers install successfully.

In the command line above, I am choosing to only install the drivers and not the associated ‘crap’ that comes with them – but if you want more than just the drivers then just amend the /UNATTENDED_INSTALL option and take off the ‘\Drivers’ at the end of the path.