Sometimes you just have to convert an iconset file to an icns file. And who knew, Apple was kind enough to give us a command to do just that in OS X! To use the iconutil command, run it with the -c option which indicates that the file will be converted. The -o indicates the file to convert a file to. Let’s use the myfile.iconset as the source file and then mynewfile.icns as the target file. The command would be as follows: iconutil -c myfile.iconset -o mynewfile.icns

Powershell Goodies From Vexasoft

There are a number of features that make mass deployment of Mac OS X pretty easy. Some of these would be great to have in Windows. These range from systemconfiguration to networksetup and the ability to look at packages that have been installed and review their bills of material. Well, the good people at Vexasoft have built a number of Powershell libraries that, while they aren’t named as such, do a number of the features that these commands do, just for Windows clients via Powershell. And the best part is, a number of them are free. Let’s look at what some of these commands do:
  • First, there are the cmdlets used to manage the network stack (so similar to various verbs in networksetup). These include Add-NetworkAdapterDNS, Add-NetworkAdapterGateway, Add-NetworkAdapterIP, Disable-NetworkAdapter, Enable-NetworkAdapter, Get-NetworkAdapter, Remove-NetworkAdapterIP, Remove-NetworkAdapterGateway, Remove-NetworkAdapterDNS, Set-(followed by the others from the above sets) and Rename-NetworkAdapter.
  • Second, you can automate binding with Set-Domain. This is similar to dsconfigad but less awesome because it’s third party, but still more awesome than the native tools because it’s easier.
  • Third, rename the system. This is similar to scutil, hostname, sets. Just use Rename-Computer to change the name of a Windows system.
  • My favorite, having written something similar, is probably Get-RemoteDesktopConfig and Set-RemoteDesktopConfig, similar to the kickstart options in OS X.
  • And a tool similar to installer in OS X, Install-MSIProduct, which installs MSIs.
  • Sixth, there’s Set-Pagefile, because if you’re gonna’ change it, do so while imaging to save a reboot later…
  • While there are others, the final one I’d like to mention is still free: Get-RegistryKey, which gives us the ability to basically run the closest thing to defaults commands I’ve found against the Windows platform.
They install as standard Powershell modules, making them easy to drop into practically any imaging environment. Much of these can be done via WMI or Powershell already, but will require a bit more legwork to script. Having them pre-built makes it easier than ever to perform some basic tasks for other platforms en masse, on Windows.

pcastaction verbs

pcastaction comes with a number of verbs, each specific to a type of automation that can be used in Podcast Producer. These include:
  • unpack – extract a folder archive before running the automation
  • shell – run a command or shell script
  • preflight – run a script before the automation
  • postflight – run a script after an automation
  • encode – input a standard video file and then output a video file using a different codec
  • annotate – annotate a files metadata
  • qceffect – run a custom Quartz Composer composition against a file
  • watermark – insert a watermark into an indicated video file
  • title – provide a title for the resultant file
  • merge – merge two existing files
  • iTunes – indicates the video is to be included in an iTunes RSS feed
  • iTunesU – interface with iTunesU the same way that the iTunes verb can do
  • mail – send an email announcement about the new video
  • archive – archive files used in the automation
  • publish – publish the required files into the root of the web server
  • groupblog – add the item into the group’s RSS feed
  • template – create a new file from a template
  • approval – submit content for approval