The GPO That Couldn’t

After many sweet years, we finally bid farewell to Internet Explorer 6.  We planned to deploy Internet Explorer 7 via a Software Installation GPO.  After making the IE 7 MSI with the IEAK, we assigned it as a GPO.  As soon as the computer would reboot, the MSI would be assigned, install and restart the PC.  This worked great, except some PCs just weren’t getting the GPO.  Running RSOP, I saw the message:

Software Installation did not complete policy processing because a system restart is required for the settings to be applied. Group Policy will attempt to apply the settings the next time the computer is restarted.

So I rebooted the PC over and over again, only again to find the same message.  Copying down all the computer names, I started to look at each computer.  They were all Dell GX270 computers.  I sat down at one of these machines and started updating network drivers, setting the GPO “Always wait for the network at computer startup and logon” locally to Enabled, etc.  After a few Google searching, I found a setting called Media Sensing that can cause a computer not to detect the network connection at boot: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/326152.

The explanation from the above article is as follows:

The problem occurs because link status fluctuates as the network adapter (also known as the network interface card, or NIC) driver initializes and as the network adapter hardware negotiates a link with the network infrastructure. The Group Policy application stack executes before the negotiation process is completed and can fail because of the absence of a valid link.

Upon running the REG file I made with this setting, the PC took the GPO!  Within SCCM 2007, I created a collection with membership based on computers with the chassis value of GX270.  I then pushed my REG file to this collection and shazam, all were fixed!

– Soli Deo Gloria

2 thoughts on “The GPO That Couldn’t”

    1. Well sir, you are referencing a 8 year old post. 🙂 I see the link to the Microsoft article is no longer there and note this post was made during the Windows XP era.

      Below is the registry key I changed.

      Start Registry Editor.

      Locate the following registry subkey:
      HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Tcpip\Parameters
      Add the following registry entry to the Parameters subkey:
      Name: DisableDHCPMediaSense
      Data type: REG_DWORD (Boolean)
      Value: 1

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