Office Click-To-Run and XML Files

So, it used to be that we would install Office using a batch script that would invoke a setup.exe, assign a specific /configure flag and manually assign a specific XML file that contained the product that we wanted to install. This was bulky. It got too bulky when we needed to install 32-bit and 64-bit versions.

TIME FOR A CHANGE!

This is when I started thinking: “wow I really hate batch. I’m really glad I’m not the one that had to write this old script. Lets PowerShell this shit!”

First I needed a template XML file to modify, So this is what that looks like:

<Configuration>
  <Add OfficeClientEdition="64" Channel="Current">
    <Product ID="O365BusinessRetail">
      <Language ID="MatchOS" />
    </Product>
  </Add>
</Configuration>

This is the file that we will edit to say which product we want installing also if we want 64-bit or 32-bit.

Next, I needed to create a PowerShell script that would take a user’s input, edit the XML file accordingly and start the setup.exe with this flag. I also needed the bit-version that they wanted.

I started by defining the variables I would need for the script:

#Variables used for the installation
$bitVersion = ""
$officeProduct = ""
$pathToOffice = "\\path\to\office\folder"
$xmlFile = "OfficeXML.xml"
$pathToXMLFile = Join-Path -Path $pathToOffice -ChildPath $xmlFile

Then I created a function I would use to update the XML file. I needed two parameters, the product that they wanted installing and the bit version they wanted:

#Updates the XML file based on the input
function Update-XMLFile([string]$product, [string]$bit){

    try{
        #Loading the XML document
        [xml]$xmlDoc = Get-Content -Path $pathToXMLFile

        #Edit the document
        $xmlDoc.Configuration.Add.OfficeClientEdition = $bit
        $xmlDoc.Configuration.Add.Product.ID = $product

        #Save the document
        $xmlDoc.Save($pathToXMLFile)
    }catch{
        $errorMessage = $_.Exception.Message
        Write-Host $errorMessage -ForegroundColor Red
        Read-Host "The script encountered the above error - will now exit"
    }
}

I then created another function to start the installation. This also required two parameters, the bit version and the XML file name

#Function to start the installation
function Start-Installation([string]$bit, [string]$xmlName){
    try{
        .\setup.exe /configure $bit\$xmlName
    }catch{
        $errorMessage = $_.Exception.Message
        Write-Host $errorMessage
        Read-Host "The script encountered the above error - will now exit"
    }
}

My final function was a verification test. Since we want to only use 64-bit for future installations, I had to make sure that whoever was using the script knew this and would be competent enough to do a little bit of math:

#Function to check the user wants 32 bit
function Get-Verification(){
    $output = $false

    Write-Host "Are you sure you want to install 32-bit?" -ForegroundColor Red
    Write-Host "All new installs should use 64-bit instead"
    Write-Host "If you want to install 32-bit, complete the test below, otherwise enter the wrong answer"

    $firstNumber = Get-Random -Minimum 1 -Maximum 11
    $secondNumber = Get-Random -Minimum 1 -Maximum 11

    $sumToCheck = $firstNumber + $secondNumber

    $verificationInput = Read-Host "$($firstNumber) + $($secondNumber) = ?"

    if ($verificationInput -eq $sumToCheck){
        Write-Host "Fine! 32-bit will be installed..."
        $output = $true
    }else{
        Write-Host "Finally! 64-bit will be installed"
        $output = $false
    }
    return $output
}

Now that all my functions were defined, I could start with the actual meat of the script. This included cleaning the screen, asking the user some questions, launching the 32-bit verification is needed, updating the XML file using a switch statement and finally kicking off the installation. Heres what that looked like:

#Clear the screen
Clear-Host

#region Checking if the user wants 64 bit or 32 bit

do{

    Write-Host "Do you want" -NoNewline
    Write-Host " 64-bit " -NoNewline -ForegroundColor Yellow
    Write-Host "or" -NoNewline
    Write-Host " 32-bit " -NoNewline -ForegroundColor Green
    Write-Host "? (64 or 32): " -NoNewline
    $bitVersionInput = (Read-Host).ToUpper()
}while((64 ,32) -notcontains $bitVersionInput)

#endregion

#Check the user definitely wants 32 bit
if ($bitVersionInput -eq "32"){
    if (Get-Verification){
        $bitVersion = $bitVersionInput
    }else{
        $bitVersionInput = "64"
    }
}

#Update the bitVersion variable
$bitVersion = $bitVersionInput

#region Asking what product to install

#Ask the user what product they want to install
Write-Host @"

Please select one product from the below list

"@

Write-Host @"
1) Business Retail
2) ProPlus Retail

"@ -ForegroundColor Cyan

Write-Host @"
3) Visio Std Volume
4) Visio Pro Volume
5) Visio Pro Retail

"@ -ForegroundColor Green

Write-Host @"
6) Project Std Volume
7) Project Pro Volume
8) Project Pro Retail

"@ -ForegroundColor Gray

Write-Host @"
C) Cancel

"@ -ForegroundColor Red

do{
    $officeProductInput = (Read-Host "Enter a number").ToUpper()
}while((1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8, "C") -notcontains $officeProductInput)

#endregion

#Update the product variable
$officeProduct = $officeProductInput

#region Switch the input to see what it is and perform the required operation

switch($officeProduct){
    
    #Business Retail
    1 { Update-XMLFile -product "O365BusinessRetail" -bit $bitVersion}
    #ProPlus
    2 { Update-XMLFile -product "O365ProPlusRetail" -bit $bitVersion}
    #Visio Std Volume
    3 { Update-XMLFile -product "VisioStd2019Volume" -bit $bitVersion}
    #Visio Pro Volume
    4 { Update-XMLFile -product "VisioPro2019Volume" -bit $bitVersion}
    #Visio Pro Retail
    5 { Update-XMLFile -product "VisioPro2019Retail" -bit $bitVersion}
    #Project Std Volume
    6 { Update-XMLFile -product "ProjectStd2019Volume" -bit $bitVersion}
    #Project Pro Volume
    7 { Update-XMLFile -product "ProjectPro2019Volume" -bit $bitVersion}
    #Project Pro Retail
    8 { Update-XMLFile -product "ProjectPro2019Retail" -bit $bitVersion}
    #Cancel
    "C" {Exit}
    default {Exit}
}

#endregion

#Start the installation
Write-Host "Installing..." -ForegroundColor Green
Start-Installation -bit $bitVersion -xmlName $xmlFile
Write-Host "This window can be closed"
Read-Host

Done!

If you’re wondering what the script looks like as a whole, wonder no longer:

#Variables used for the installation
$bitVersion = ""
$officeProduct = ""
$pathToOffice = "\\sandpdc\software\Office"
$xmlFile = "OfficeXML.xml"
$pathToXMLFile = Join-Path -Path $pathToOffice -ChildPath $xmlFile

#Updates the XML file based on the input
function Update-XMLFile([string]$product, [string]$bit){

    try{
        #Loading the XML document
        [xml]$xmlDoc = Get-Content -Path $pathToXMLFile

        #Edit the document
        $xmlDoc.Configuration.Add.OfficeClientEdition = $bit
        $xmlDoc.Configuration.Add.Product.ID = $product

        #Save the document
        $xmlDoc.Save($pathToXMLFile)
    }catch{
        $errorMessage = $_.Exception.Message
        Write-Host $errorMessage -ForegroundColor Red
        Read-Host "The script encountered the above error - will now exit"
    }
}

#Function to start the installation
function Start-Installation([string]$bit, [string]$xmlName){
    try{
        .\setup.exe /configure $bit\$xmlName
    }catch{
        $errorMessage = $_.Exception.Message
        Write-Host $errorMessage
        Read-Host "The script encountered the above error - will now exit"
    }
}

#Function to check the user wants 32 bit
function Get-Verification(){
    $output = $false

    Write-Host "Are you sure you want to install 32-bit?" -ForegroundColor Red
    Write-Host "All new installs should use 64-bit instead"
    Write-Host "If you want to install 32-bit, complete the test below, otherwise enter the wrong answer"

    $firstNumber = Get-Random -Minimum 1 -Maximum 11
    $secondNumber = Get-Random -Minimum 1 -Maximum 11

    $sumToCheck = $firstNumber + $secondNumber

    $verificationInput = Read-Host "$($firstNumber) + $($secondNumber) = ?"

    if ($verificationInput -eq $sumToCheck){
        Write-Host "Fine! 32-bit will be installed..."
        $output = $true
    }else{
        Write-Host "Finally! 64-bit will be installed"
        $output = $false
    }
    return $output
}

#Clear the screen
Clear-Host

#region Checking if the user wants 64 bit or 32 bit

do{

    Write-Host "Do you want" -NoNewline
    Write-Host " 64-bit " -NoNewline -ForegroundColor Yellow
    Write-Host "or" -NoNewline
    Write-Host " 32-bit " -NoNewline -ForegroundColor Green
    Write-Host "? (64 or 32): " -NoNewline
    $bitVersionInput = (Read-Host).ToUpper()
}while((64 ,32) -notcontains $bitVersionInput)

#endregion

#Check the user definitely wants 32 bit
if ($bitVersionInput -eq "32"){
    if (Get-Verification){
        $bitVersion = $bitVersionInput
    }else{
        $bitVersionInput = "64"
    }
}

#Update the bitVersion variable
$bitVersion = $bitVersionInput

#region Asking what product to install

#Ask the user what product they want to install
Write-Host @"

Please select one product from the below list

"@

Write-Host @"
1) Business Retail
2) ProPlus Retail

"@ -ForegroundColor Cyan

Write-Host @"
3) Visio Std Volume
4) Visio Pro Volume
5) Visio Pro Retail

"@ -ForegroundColor Green

Write-Host @"
6) Project Std Volume
7) Project Pro Volume
8) Project Pro Retail

"@ -ForegroundColor Gray

Write-Host @"
C) Cancel

"@ -ForegroundColor Red

do{
    $officeProductInput = (Read-Host "Enter a number").ToUpper()
}while((1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8, "C") -notcontains $officeProductInput)

#endregion

#Update the product variable
$officeProduct = $officeProductInput

#region Switch the input to see what it is and perform the required operation

switch($officeProduct){
    
    #Business Retail
    1 { Update-XMLFile -product "O365BusinessRetail" -bit $bitVersion}
    #ProPlus
    2 { Update-XMLFile -product "O365ProPlusRetail" -bit $bitVersion}
    #Visio Std Volume
    3 { Update-XMLFile -product "VisioStd2019Volume" -bit $bitVersion}
    #Visio Pro Volume
    4 { Update-XMLFile -product "VisioPro2019Volume" -bit $bitVersion}
    #Visio Pro Retail
    5 { Update-XMLFile -product "VisioPro2019Retail" -bit $bitVersion}
    #Project Std Volume
    6 { Update-XMLFile -product "ProjectStd2019Volume" -bit $bitVersion}
    #Project Pro Volume
    7 { Update-XMLFile -product "ProjectPro2019Volume" -bit $bitVersion}
    #Project Pro Retail
    8 { Update-XMLFile -product "ProjectPro2019Retail" -bit $bitVersion}
    #Cancel
    "C" {Exit}
    default {Exit}
}

#endregion

#Start the installation
Write-Host "Installing..." -ForegroundColor Green
Start-Installation -bit $bitVersion -xmlName $xmlFile
Write-Host "This window can be closed"
Read-Host

 

Quering and Adding Info To Access Database Using C#

In this post, I will show you how I created a program to extract and add data to an Access database. Before we get started, you can see my current specifications below:

Getting values from a table:

Using System.Data.OleDB;

//Create a new list to hold all the values
List<String> values = new List<String>();

//Build the connection string and SQL string
string connectionString = @$"Provider=Microsoft.ACE.OLEDB;Data Source = C:\Path\To\Access.accdb";
string sqlString = "SELECT * FROM Table_Name";

//Create a new connection to the Access file
using (OleDbConnection connection = new OleDbConnection(connectionString)){

    //Creating a new command
    OleDbCommand command = new OleDbCommand(sqlString, connection);
    
    //Try/catch to catch errors, DON'T DO THIS IN SERIOUS PROJECTS!
    try{
        
        //Opening the connection and reading the data
        connection.Open();
        using(OleDbDataReader reader = command.ExecuteReader()){
            while(reader.Read()){
                
                //Adding the value to the values list
                values.Add(reader["Field_Name"].ToString());
            }
        }
    }catch{ }
    
    //Closing the connection
    connection.Close();
}

//Sorting the list in ascending order
values.Sort();

 

Adding a new row to the table:

Using System.Data.OleDb;

//Building the connection string and SQL string
string connectionString = @$"Provider=Microsoft.ACE.OLEDB.12.0;Data Source = C:\Path\To\Access.accdb";
string sqlString = $"INSERT INTO Table_Name(Field_Name1, Field_Name2) VALUES ('{Field_Value1}','{Field_Value2}')";

//Creating a new connection to the Access file
using (OleDbConnection connection = new OleDbConnection(connectionString))
{
    //Build a new command
    using(OleDbCommand command = new OleDbCommand(sqlString, connection))
    {
        //Open the database connection and execute the write
        connection.Open();
        command.ExecuteReader();
    }
    //Close the database connection
    connection.Close();
}

Enjoy!

Launch Chrome and Other Applications in C#

Hi Everyone,

Short post, I just wanted to put down into writing how I open Chrome windows and other applications in C# code. This is used by one of my startup programs which allowed me to open all my most used applications with ease 🙂

First I create a Process variables using the System.Diagnostics resource:

Process process = new Process();

I then point the process variables start info filename to the location of my Chrome executable:

process.StartInfo.FileName = @"C:\Path\To\Chrome.exe";

I then add my URL to the start info arguments:

process.StartInfo.Arguments = @"https://bbc.co.uk";

Then, if I want the link to open as a new window instead of onto an existing Chrome window I use:

process.StartInfo.Arguments += " --new-windows";

Finally, I start the process:

process.Start();

Here are some different scenarios:

Opening a URL in an existing Chrome window:

Process process = new Process();
process.StartInfo.FileName = @"C:\Path\To\Chrome.exe";
process.StartInfo.Arguments = @"https://bbc.co.uk" ;
process.Start()

Opening a URL in a new Chrome window:

Process process = new Process();
process.StartInfo.FileName = @"C:\Path\To\chrome.exe";
process.StartInfo.Arguments = @"https://bbc.co.uk";
process.StartInfo.Arguments += " --new-window";
process.Start();

Opening multiple URLs in a new Chrome window:

List<String> URLs = new List<String>(){
    "https://bbc.co.uk",
    "https://mharwood.uk",
    "https://youtube.com"
}

Process process = new Process();
process.StartInfo.FileName = @"C:\Path\To\chrome.exe";
foreach (string i in URLs)
{
    process.StartInfo.Arguments += i;
}
process.StartInfo.Arguments += " --new-window";
process.Start();

Opening different programs:

List<String> Programs = new List<String>(){
    @"C:\Path\To\First\Program.exe",
    @"C:\Path\To\Second\Program.exe",
    @"C:\Path\To\Third\Program.exe"
}

foreach(string i in Programs){
    Process.Start(i);
}

I hope this is useful information for someone. Enjoy!

Performing Asynchronous Remote WMI Calls C#

This was a problem that I was stuck on for a long time. Originally, I made a program in PowerShell that myself and a couple of other people in the company used to query remote computers to retrieve certain information (SN etc). I wanted to make the move to using WPF with C# simply because of its scale, simplicity and flexibility. The things that I saw being done in WPF with C# was beyond anything I could ever dream with PowerShell.

After making the initial leap, I realised that I would how much code I would have to re-write/re-imagine into C# code. Go figure… One thing that I thought would be simple is performing asynchronous operations but this proved to be something I should use with caution. See, I could simply use Task.Run() and perform the actions, but this is like using a sledgehammer to drive in a nail. After a lot of research, I moved from using this approve to using an observer class to watch the operation and using the QueryInstancesAsync method instead of QueryInstances()

This is the code that I ended up with:

//Used to define what is returned in the async results
public static CimAsyncMultipleResults<CimInstance> GetValues(CimSession _session)
{
    return _session.QueryInstancesAsync(@"root\cimv2", "WQL", "SELECT Username FROM Win32_ComputerSystem");
}

//This watches the async progress
class CimInstanceWatcher : IObserver<CimInstance>
{
    public void OnCompleted()
    {
        Console.WriteLine("Done");
    }

    public void OnError(Exception e)
    {
        Console.WriteLine("Error: " + e.Message);
    }

    public void OnNext (CimInstance value)
    {
        Console.WriteLine("Value: " + value);
    }
}

private static void Main()
{
    //Leaving cimsession creation as sync because is happens "instantly"
    CimSession Session = CimSession.Create("PC-NAME");
    //Creating a new watcher object
    var instanceObject = new CimInstanceWatcher();
    //Subscribing the watcher object to the async call
    GetValues(Session).Subscribe(instanceObject);
    Console.ReadLine();
}

This information was provided from Microsofts forums

Enjoy!

Button Masher Game in WPF and C#

I’ve been trying to learn WPF with C# as the backend instead of PowerShell. Since there’s a lot more information on using C# over PowerShell, I decided I would take the plunge and learn as much as I could to create some apps.

This is the first app that I completed. In all honesty, it only took me around 2 hours to get the functionality completed. I did this whilst feeling ill and waiting for the wife to get back from work. I was really surprised by how easy it was for me to understand and write in C# and I was quite proud of the final outcome.

The app will probably look really different on your screen but it looks really nice on my computer. This is what the app looks like once it’s loaded:

The goal of the game is for one person to mash the A button as fast as possible and for another person to mash the B button as fast as possible. The first person to mash their respective buttons 100 times is the winner. It then displays a winning screen and allows the users to play again:

Here is a little GIF of what the game looks and feels like:

And here is the download for the game’s exe file:

ButtonMasher

Now for the nitty gritty stuff. I have included the XML and C# code used for the project below and will also include them as downloads:

XML

<Window x:Class="ButtonMasher.MainWindow"
        xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2006/xaml/presentation"
        xmlns:x="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2006/xaml"
        xmlns:d="http://schemas.microsoft.com/expression/blend/2008"
        xmlns:mc="http://schemas.openxmlformats.org/markup-compatibility/2006"
        xmlns:local="clr-namespace:ButtonMasher"
        mc:Ignorable="d"
        Title="Button Masher" Width="450" MinHeight="145" MinWidth="300" KeyDown="WindowKeyDown" SizeToContent="Height" Icon="Icon.ico">
    <Window.Background>
        <LinearGradientBrush StartPoint="-1,-1" EndPoint="1.5,1.5" >
            <GradientStop Color="#FF018A8F" Offset="0.41" />
            <GradientStop Color="#FF00FFD6" Offset="1" />
        </LinearGradientBrush>
    </Window.Background>
    <Grid Name="Grid">
        <Grid.Background>
            <ImageBrush ImageSource="Winner_Background.jpg" Stretch="UniformToFill" Opacity="0" />
        </Grid.Background>
        <Grid.ColumnDefinitions>
            <ColumnDefinition Width="1*"/>
            <ColumnDefinition Width="1*"/>
        </Grid.ColumnDefinitions>
        <Grid.RowDefinitions>
            <RowDefinition Height="Auto"/>
            <RowDefinition Height="Auto"/>
            <RowDefinition Height="Auto" />
            <RowDefinition Height="Auto" />
        </Grid.RowDefinitions>
        <Label Visibility="Visible" Name="PlayerOneLabel" Content="0" FontSize="46" HorizontalAlignment="Center" VerticalAlignment="Center" Foreground="White" FontFamily="Arial"  />
        <Label Visibility="Visible" Name="PlayerTwoLabel" Content="0" FontSize="46" HorizontalAlignment="Center" VerticalAlignment="Center" Grid.Column="1" Foreground="White" FontFamily="Arial"/>
        <ProgressBar Visibility="Visible" Name="ProgressBar1" Margin="10,5" Background="Transparent" BorderBrush="White" BorderThickness="2" Minimum="0" Maximum="100" Value="0" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" Height="20"  Grid.Row="1" VerticalAlignment="Center" >
            <ProgressBar.Foreground>
                <LinearGradientBrush EndPoint="0,0.5" StartPoint="1,0.5">
                    <GradientStop Color="#83EAF1" Offset="0"/>
                    <GradientStop Color="#63A4FF" Offset="1"/>
                </LinearGradientBrush>
            </ProgressBar.Foreground>
        </ProgressBar>
        <ProgressBar Visibility="Visible" Name="ProgressBar2" Margin="10,5" Background="Transparent" BorderBrush="White" BorderThickness="2" Minimum="0" Maximum="100" Value="0" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" Height="20" Grid.Row="1" Grid.Column="1" VerticalAlignment="Center" RenderTransformOrigin="0.5,0.5"  >
            <ProgressBar.Foreground>
                <LinearGradientBrush EndPoint="0,0.5" StartPoint="1,0.5">
                    <GradientStop Color="#83EAF1" Offset="0"/>
                    <GradientStop Color="#63A4FF" Offset="1"/>
                </LinearGradientBrush>
            </ProgressBar.Foreground>
            <ProgressBar.RenderTransform>
                <TransformGroup>
                    <ScaleTransform/>
                    <SkewTransform/>
                    <RotateTransform Angle="180"/>
                    <TranslateTransform/>
                </TransformGroup>
            </ProgressBar.RenderTransform>
        </ProgressBar>
        <TextBlock Name="RulesTextBlock" MouseUp="ToggleRules" Visibility="Visible" Grid.Row="2" VerticalAlignment="Bottom" HorizontalAlignment="Left" FontFamily="Arial" Foreground="White" FontSize="10" Cursor="Hand" >
            See Rules
        </TextBlock>
        <TextBlock Name="WonLabel" Text="Winner" Padding="0,40,0,0" Visibility="Collapsed" Grid.ColumnSpan="2" FontSize="46" HorizontalAlignment="Center" VerticalAlignment="Bottom" FontWeight="Bold" TextDecorations="{x:Null}" Foreground="#FFFECE26" FontFamily="Arial">
            <TextBlock.Effect>
                <DropShadowEffect BlurRadius="1" Direction="320" ShadowDepth="2"/>
            </TextBlock.Effect>
        </TextBlock>
        <Border Name="PlayAgainBorder" Visibility="Collapsed" Grid.Row="1" Cursor="Hand" Grid.ColumnSpan="2" CornerRadius="10" Margin="0,0,0,10" HorizontalAlignment="Center" VerticalAlignment="Center" MouseUp="PlayAgain">
            <Border.Style>
                <Style>
                    <Setter Property="Border.Background" Value="#FF494949" />
                    <Setter Property="Border.BorderThickness" Value="3"/>
                    <Style.Triggers>
                        <Trigger Property="Border.IsMouseOver" Value="True" >
                            <Setter Property="Border.Background" Value="#2ecc71"/>
                        </Trigger>
                    </Style.Triggers>
                </Style>
            </Border.Style>
            <Label Content="Play Again" VerticalAlignment="Center" Foreground="White" HorizontalAlignment="Center" VerticalContentAlignment="Center" FontSize="16" FontFamily="Arial"/>
        </Border>
        <TextBlock Name="RulesSection" Foreground="White" Grid.Row="3" Grid.ColumnSpan="2" TextWrapping="Wrap" TextAlignment="Center" Padding="20" Visibility="Collapsed" FontFamily="Arial" FontSize="14">
            The rules are simple, player one (left side) has to mash the 'A' button as fast as possible while player two (right side) has to mash the 'B' button as fast as possible. The first one to reach 100 button "mashes" wins the game!
        </TextBlock>
    </Grid>
</Window>

C#

using System;
using System.Collections.Generic;
using System.Linq;
using System.Text;
using System.Threading.Tasks;
using System.Windows;
using System.Windows.Controls;
using System.Windows.Data;
using System.Windows.Documents;
using System.Windows.Input;
using System.Windows.Media;
using System.Windows.Media.Imaging;
using System.Windows.Navigation;
using System.Windows.Shapes;

namespace ButtonMasher
{
    /// <summary>
    /// Interaction logic for MainWindow.xaml
    /// </summary>
    public partial class MainWindow : Window
    {
        //player one score
        int player1Score = 0;
        int player2Score = 0;

        //LOAD FORM
        public MainWindow()
        {
            InitializeComponent();
        }

        //UPDATE PLAYER ONE SCORE
        void UpdatePlayerOneScore()
        {
            player1Score++;
            PlayerOneLabel.Content = player1Score;
        }

        //UPDATE PLAYER TWO SCORE
        void UpdatePlayerTwoScore()
        {
            player2Score++;
            PlayerTwoLabel.Content = player2Score;
        }

        //SET WON SCREEN VISIBILITY
        void WonScreenVisibility(bool visible)
        {
            if (visible)
            {
                //show won screen
                PlayerOneLabel.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
                PlayerTwoLabel.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
                ProgressBar1.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
                ProgressBar2.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
                RulesTextBlock.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
                RulesSection.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
                WonLabel.Visibility = Visibility.Visible;
                PlayAgainBorder.Visibility = Visibility.Visible;
                Grid.Background.Opacity = 100;
                MinWidth = 350;
                MinHeight = 170;
            }
            else
            {
                //hide won screen
                PlayerOneLabel.Visibility = Visibility.Visible;
                PlayerTwoLabel.Visibility = Visibility.Visible;
                ProgressBar1.Visibility = Visibility.Visible;
                ProgressBar2.Visibility = Visibility.Visible;
                RulesTextBlock.Visibility = Visibility.Visible;
                RulesSection.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
                WonLabel.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
                PlayAgainBorder.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
                Grid.Background.Opacity = 0;
                MinWidth = 300;
                MinHeight = 145;
            }
            //switch "show" or "hide" in rules textblock
            if (RulesSection.Visibility == Visibility.Visible)
            {
                RulesTextBlock.Text = "Hide Rules";
            }
            else
            {
                RulesTextBlock.Text = "Show Rules";
            }
        }

        //WON SCREEN
        void WonScreen(string player)
        {
            if(player == "1")
            {
                WonScreenVisibility(true);
                WonLabel.Text = "Player 1 won!";
            }else if(player == "2")
            {
                WonScreenVisibility(true);
                WonLabel.Text = "Player 2 won!";
            }
        }

        //RESET SCORES AND BARS
        void Reset()
        {
            player1Score = 0;
            player2Score = 0;
            PlayerOneLabel.Content = player1Score;
            PlayerTwoLabel.Content = player2Score;
            ProgressBar1.Value = player1Score;
            ProgressBar2.Value = player2Score;
        }

        //USER PRESSES BUTTON FORM
        private void WindowKeyDown(object sender, KeyEventArgs e)
        {
            //checking which key was pressed
            if (e.Key == Key.A)
            {
                UpdatePlayerOneScore(); 
            }else if(e.Key == Key.L)
            {
                UpdatePlayerTwoScore();
            }

            //calculating progress bar value
            ProgressBar1.Value = player1Score;
            ProgressBar2.Value = player2Score;

            //checking if anyone won
            if (ProgressBar1.Value > 99)
            {
                //player one has won
                WonScreen("1");

            }
            else if (ProgressBar2.Value > 99)
            {
                //player two has won
                WonScreen("2");
            }            
        }        

        //PLAY AGAIN
        private void PlayAgain(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e)
        {
            WonScreenVisibility(false);
            Reset();
        }

        //TOGGLE RULES
        void ToggleRules(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e)
        {
            if (RulesSection.Visibility == Visibility.Collapsed)
            {
                //show rules
                RulesSection.Visibility = Visibility.Visible;
                RulesTextBlock.Text = "Hide Rules";
                SizeToContent = SizeToContent.Height;
                MinHeight = 265;
            }
            else
            {
                //hide rules
                RulesSection.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;
                RulesTextBlock.Text = "Show Rules";
                SizeToContent = SizeToContent.Height;
                MinHeight = 145;
            }
        }
    }
}

I really hope you enjoy this little game that I created. Please feel free to use it, change it and distribute your own version at will 🙂

Enjoy!

LAPS 3

Okay, this is probably my final update to the whole LAPS thing. I have created two iterations in the past but neither were really groundbreaking or my own design. Not that this update is groundbreaking either though. This is a further update to the below post:

LAPS WinForm 2

I wanted to completely redo my LAPS form (again) to make it my own design, responsive and ultimately better. This is what the final form looks like. It is completely responsive and resizeable:

I will include the source code here but the best place to download this would be from my TechNet gallery.

There are a couple of things you need to change in the form to make it work:

  • Adding your domain controller and domain root to the variables at the top of the script
  • Add your BASE64 data into the BASE64 variable to use your own logo

Heres the code:

#Enter your domain and domain controller below :)
$script:domainController = "DOMAIN CONTROLLER HERE" #E.G domaincontroller.domain.lan
$script:domainRoot = "DOMAIN ROOT HERE" #E.G domain.lan

#LOADING ASSEMBLIES
Add-Type -AssemblyName PresentationFramework, System.Drawing, System.Windows.Forms, WindowsFormsIntegration

#ICON FOR FORM
[string]$base64=@'
BASE64 DATA HERE
'@

#CREATING THE IMAGE FROM BASE64 DATA
$bitmap = New-Object System.Windows.Media.Imaging.BitMapImage
$bitmap.BeginInit()
$bitmap.StreamSource = [System.IO.MemoryStream][System.Convert]::FromBase64String($base64)
$bitmap.EndInit()
$bitmap.Freeze()

#LAPS WINDOW XML
[xml]$LAPSXaml = @"
<Window
    xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2006/xaml/presentation"
    Title="LAPS UI" Height="400" Width="400" MinHeight="400" MinWidth="400" WindowStartupLocation="CenterScreen">
    <Grid>
        <Grid.ColumnDefinitions>
            <ColumnDefinition Width="2"/>
            <ColumnDefinition/>
            <ColumnDefinition Width="Auto" MinWidth="75"/>
        </Grid.ColumnDefinitions>
        <Grid.RowDefinitions>
            <RowDefinition Height="Auto"/>
            <RowDefinition Height="Auto"/>
            <RowDefinition Height="Auto"/>
            <RowDefinition Height="Auto"/>
            <RowDefinition Height="Auto"/>
            <RowDefinition Height="Auto"/>
            <RowDefinition Height="Auto"/>
            <RowDefinition Height="Auto"/>
            <RowDefinition Height="Auto" MinHeight="7"/>
            <RowDefinition/>
        </Grid.RowDefinitions>
        <Label Content="ComputerName:" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" Grid.Column="1" FontSize="14"/>
        <TextBox Name="Computer_Textbox" VerticalContentAlignment="Center" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" Grid.Row="1" TextWrapping="Wrap" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" Margin="3" Grid.Column="1" FontSize="14"/>
        <Button Name="Search_Button" Content="Search" Grid.Column="2" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" Grid.Row="1" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" Margin="0,3,5,3"/>
        <Label Content="Password" Grid.Column="1" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" Grid.Row="2" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" FontSize="14"/>
        <TextBox Name="Password_Textbox" Grid.Column="1" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" Grid.Row="3" TextWrapping="Wrap" Margin="3" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" IsReadOnly="True" FontSize="14"/>
        <Button Name="Copy_Button" Content="Copy" Grid.Column="2" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" Grid.Row="3" Margin="0,3,5,3" VerticalAlignment="Stretch"/>
        <Label Content="Password Expires" Grid.Column="1" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" Grid.Row="4" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" FontSize="14"/>
        <TextBox Name="Password_Ex_Textbox" Grid.Column="1" IsReadOnly="True" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" Grid.Row="5" TextWrapping="Wrap" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" Margin="3" FontSize="14"/>
        <Label Content="New Expiration" Grid.Column="1" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" Grid.Row="6" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" FontSize="14"/>
        <DatePicker Name="Date_Picker" Grid.Column="1" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" Grid.Row="7" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" Margin="3" FontSize="14"/>
        <Button Name="Set_Button" Content="Set" Grid.Column="2" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" Grid.Row="7" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" Margin="0,5,5,5"/>
        <GridSplitter IsEnabled="False" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" Grid.Row="8" Grid.Column="1" Margin="5,2,5,2" Grid.ColumnSpan="2"/>
        <TextBox Name="Output_Textbox" VerticalScrollBarVisibility="Auto" IsReadOnly="True" HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" Grid.Row="9" TextWrapping="Wrap" Margin="1,5,1,1" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" Grid.ColumnSpan="3" FontSize="12"/>
    </Grid>
</Window>
"@

#LOADING XAML
$LAPSReader=(New-Object System.Xml.XmlNodeReader $LAPSXaml)
$LAPSWindow=[Windows.Markup.XamlReader]::Load($LAPSReader)
$LAPSWindow.Icon = $bitmap

#ASSIGNING CONTROLS
$Computer_Textbox = $LAPSWindow.FindName("Computer_Textbox")
$Search_Button = $LAPSWindow.FindName("Search_Button")
$Password_Textbox = $LAPSWindow.FindName("Password_Textbox")
$Copy_Button = $LAPSWindow.FindName("Copy_Button")
$Password_Ex_Textbox = $LAPSWindow.FindName("Password_Ex_Textbox")
$Date_Picker = $LAPSWindow.FindName("Date_Picker")
$Set_Button = $LAPSWindow.FindName("Set_Button")
$Output_Textbox = $LAPSWindow.FindName("Output_Textbox")

#FUNCTION TO SET OUTPUT TEXTBOX
function set-output-textbox{
    param(
        [string]$value,
        [bool]$date
    )
    if ($date){
        $Output_Textbox.Text = ("[$(Get-Date)] - $value `r`n")
    }else{
        $Output_Textbox.Text = $value
    }
}

#FUNCTION TO UPDATE OUTPUT TEXTBOX
function update-output-textbox{
    param(
        [string]$value,
        [bool]$date
    )
    if ($date){
        $Output_Textbox.AppendText("[$(Get-Date)] - $value `r`n")
    }else{
        $Output_Textbox.AppendText("     $value `r`n")
    }
    $Output_Textbox.ScrollToEnd()
}

#FUNCTION TO UPDATE FORM
function update-form{
    [System.Windows.Forms.Application]::DoEvents()
}

#FUNCTION TO UPDATE PASSWORD TEXTBOX
function update-password-textbox($value){
    $Password_Textbox.Text = $value
}

#FUNCTION TO UPDATE PASSWORD EX TEXTBOX
function update-passwordex-texbox($value){
    $Password_Ex_Textbox.Text = $value
}

#FUNCTION TO SET CONTROLS
function set-controls{
    param(
        [bool]$switcher,
        [bool]$setswitcher
    )
    $Search_Button.IsEnabled = $switcher
    $Set_Button.IsEnabled = $setswitcher
    $Date_Picker.IsEnabled = $setswitcher
}

#DECIDE IF COPY BUTTON SHOULD BE ENABLED
$Copy_Button.IsEnabled = $false
$Password_Textbox.Add_TextChanged({
    if ($Password_Textbox.Text.Length -gt 0){
        $Copy_Button.IsEnabled = $true
    }else{
        $Copy_Button.IsEnabled = $false
    }
})

#MAKING COMPUTER NAME UPPERCASE ON FOCUS LOST
$Computer_Textbox.Add_LostFocus({
    $Computer_Textbox.Text = $Computer_Textbox.Text.ToUpper()
})

#COPY BUTTON LOGIC
$Copy_Button.Add_Click({
    Set-Clipboard -Value $Password_Textbox.Text
})

#COMPUTER TEXTBOX KEYDOWN LOGIC
$Computer_Textbox.Add_KeyDown({
    if ($args.Key -eq 'Enter'){
        $Search_Button.RaiseEvent((New-Object -TypeName System.Windows.RoutedEventArgs $([System.Windows.Controls.Button]::ClickEvent)))
    }
})

#DISABLING CONTROLS ON FORM LOAD
set-controls -switcher $true -setswitcher $false

#WELCOME MESSAGE ON FORM LOAD
$Output_Textbox.HorizontalContentAlignment="Center"
$Output_Textbox.VerticalContentAlignment="Center"
set-output-textbox -date $false -value "Welcome to version 3 of this form! It is now responsive and a lot cleaner in the background. Nothing you ever had to worry about though :)"

#SEARCH BUTTON LOGIC
$Search_Button.Add_Click({

    #DISABLING CONTROLS ON BUTTON PRESS
    $Output_Textbox.HorizontalContentAlignment="Left"
    $Output_Textbox.VerticalContentAlignment="Top"
    set-controls -switcher $false -setswitcher $false
    update-password-textbox -value $null
    update-passwordex-texbox -value $null
    $Date_Picker.Text = $null

    if ($Computer_Textbox.Text.Length -le 0){
        #OUTPUT IF EMPTY SEARCH AND ENABLING CONTROLS
        set-output-textbox -date $true -value "Input cannot be empty"
        set-controls -switcher $true -setswitcher $false    
    }else{
        set-output-textbox -date $true -value "Please Wait"
        
        #PUTTING INPUT INTO VARIABLE
        $script:computerName = $Computer_Textbox.Text

        #CREATING A SYNCHRONISED HASHTABLE
        $script:syncHash = [hashtable]::Synchronized(@{})

        #CREATING SEARCH RUNSPACE
        $searchRunspace = [runspacefactory]::CreateRunspace()
        $searchRunspace.ApartmentState = "STA"
        $searchRunspace.ThreadOptions = "ReuseThread"
        $searchRunspace.Open()
        $searchRunspace.SessionStateProxy.SetVariable("syncHash",$syncHash)
        $searchRunspace.SessionStateProxy.SetVariable("computerName",$computerName)
        $searchRunspace.SessionStateProxy.SetVariable("domainController",$domainController)

        #POWERSHELL TO BE RAN IN RUNSPACE
        $searchPowerShell = [powershell]::Create().AddScript({
            $syncHash.searchADComputer = Get-ADComputer -Identity $computerName
            $syncHash.searchInvoke = Invoke-Command -ComputerName $domainController -ScriptBlock { Get-AdmPwdPassword -ComputerName $args[0] } -ArgumentList $computerName | Select-Object Password, ExpirationTimeStamp
        })

        #ASSIGNING RUNSPACE TO POWERSHELL
        $searchPowerShell.Runspace = $searchRunspace
        #STARTING THE RUNSPACE AND POWERSHELL
        $searchObject = $searchPowerShell.BeginInvoke()

        #REFRESHING UNTIL POWERSHELL IS COMPLETE
        do{
            Start-Sleep -Milliseconds 100
            update-form
        }while (!$searchObject.IsCompleted)

        #ENDING POWERSHELL INVOKE AND DISPOSING OF RUNSPACE
        $searchPowerShell.EndInvoke($searchObject)
        $searchPowerShell.Dispose()
    
        if ($syncHash.searchADComputer){
            #COMPUTER IS FOUND ON DOMAIN
            if ($syncHash.searchInvoke){
                #INVOKE SUCCESSFUL
                $admpwdPassword = $syncHash.searchInvoke.password
                $admpwdPasswordExpiration = $syncHash.searchInvoke.ExpirationTimeStamp
                $admpwdPasswordExpirationFormatted = $admpwdPasswordExpiration.ToString("dd/MM/yyyy hh:mm:ss")

                #UPDATING FIELDS
                update-output-textbox -date $true -value "Information retrieved"
                update-password-textbox -value $admpwdPassword
                update-passwordex-texbox -value $admpwdPasswordExpirationFormatted
                set-controls -switcher $true -setswitcher $true
            }else{
                #INVOKE FAILED
                update-output-textbox -date $true -value "Failded to retrieve password information"
                update-password-textbox -value $null
                update-passwordex-texbox -value $null
                set-controls -switcher $true -setswitcher $false
            }
        }else{
            #COMPUTER NOT FOUND ON DOMAIN
            update-output-textbox -date $true -value "Host not found on domain"
            update-password-textbox -value $null
            update-passwordex-texbox -value $null
            set-controls -switcher $true -setswitcher $false
        }
    }
})

#SET EXPIRATION BUTTON LOGIC
$Set_Button.Add_Click({
    
    #DISABLING CONTROLS ON BUTTON PRESS
    set-controls -switcher $false -setswitcher $false

    if ($Date_Picker.Text.Length -le 0){
        #OUTPUT IF EMPTY DATE AND ENABLING CONTROLS
        update-output-textbox -date $true -value "No date selected"
        set-controls -switcher $true -setswitcher $true
    }else{
        #GETTING NEW DATES FOR EXPIRATION
        $newExpirationString = $Date_Picker.SelectedDate.ToString("MM/dd/yyyy")
        $script:newExpirationDate = [datetime]::ParseExact($newExpirationString, 'MM/dd/yyyy', $null)
        
        #OUTPUTTING FRIENDLY EXPIRATION TO OUTPUT TEXTBOX
        update-output-textbox -date $true -value "Setting expiration to $newExpirationString..."

        #CREATING SEARCH RUNSPACE
        $setRunspace = [runspacefactory]::CreateRunspace()
        $setRunspace.ApartmentState = "STA"
        $setRunspace.ThreadOptions = "ReuseThread"
        $setRunspace.Open()
        $setRunspace.SessionStateProxy.SetVariable("syncHash",$syncHash)
        $setRunspace.SessionStateProxy.SetVariable("computerName",$computerName)
        $setRunspace.SessionStateProxy.SetVariable("domainController",$domainController)
        $setRunspace.SessionStateProxy.SetVariable("newExpirationDate",$newExpirationDate)

        #POWERSHELL TO BE RAN IN RUNSPACE
        $setPowerShell = [powershell]::Create().AddScript({
            try{
                $syncHash.setInvoke = Invoke-Command -ComputerName $domainController -ScriptBlock {Reset-AdmPwdPassword -ComputerName $args[0] -WhenEffective $args[1] } -ArgumentList $computerName, $newExpirationDate -ErrorAction Stop
                try{
                    Invoke-GPUpdate -Computer $computerName -ErrorAction Stop
                    $syncHash.setGPUpdate = $true
                }catch{
                    #GP UPDATE FAILED
                    $syncHash.setGPUpdate = $null
                }
            }catch{
                #CHANGING EXPIRATION FAILED
                $syncHash.setInvoke = $null
            }
        })

        #ASSIGNING RUNSPACE TO POWERSHELL
        $setPowerShell.Runspace = $setRunspace
        #STARTING THE RUNSPACE AND POWERSHELL
        $setObject = $setPowerShell.BeginInvoke()

        #REFRESHING UNTIL POWERSHELL IS COMPLETE
        do{
            Start-Sleep -Milliseconds 100
            update-form
        }while (!$setObject.IsCompleted)

        #ENDING POWERSHELL INVOKE AND DISPOSING OF RUNSPACE
        $setPowerShell.EndInvoke($setObject)
        $setPowerShell.Dispose()

        #CHECKING PASSWORD EXPIRATION SUCCESS
        if ($syncHash.setInvoke){
            update-output-textbox -date $true -value "Successfully reset password expiration date"
            #CHECKING GP UPDATE SUCCESS
            if ($syncHash.setGPUpdate){
                update-output-textbox -date $true -value "Succesfully ran GP update"
            }else{
                update-output-textbox -date $true -value "Failed to run GP update, this is probably due to permissions"
            }
        }else{
            update-output-textbox -date $true -value "Failed to reset password expiration date"
        }

        #RESETTING CONTROLS
        set-controls -switcher $true -setswitcher $true
    }
})

#CHECK FOR AD MODULE AND TEST IF ON LOCAL DOMAIN/NETWORK
if ( Test-Connection $domainRoot -Count 1 -Quiet){
    #DOMAIN IS ACCESSIBLE
    if (Get-Module -List ActiveDirectory ){
        #AD MODULE INSTALLED
        #FORM WILL BE DISPLAYED WITHOUT ANY MODIFICATIONS
    }else{
        #AD MODULE NOT INSTALLED
        set-output-textbox -date $false -value "Install the AD module and restart"
        set-controls -switcher $false -setswitcher $false
        $Computer_Textbox.IsEnabled = $false
    }
}else{
    #DOMAIN ISN'T ACCESSIBLE
    set-output-textbox -date $false -value "$domainRoot is not accessible"
    set-controls -switcher $false -setswitcher $false
    $Computer_Textbox.IsEnabled = $false
}   

#REMOVING PROCESS ON FORM CLOSE
$LAPSWindow.Add_Closing({
    try{
        $syncHash.Clear() | Out-Null
    }catch{}
    
    Stop-Process -Name "LAPS" -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue
})

#DISPLAY FORM WHILST TESTING
$app = [Windows.Application]::new()
$app.run($LAPSWindow)

Enjoy!

Building Cleaner, Responsive WPF Forms

In my first two posts on this subject, I was just getting started with learning responsive WPF form building. I’m here today to show you a better way to build a responsive WPF using runspaces that will do the exact same thing as my previous uploads showed. Just better.

This time, I won’t be putting the form into its own runspace. As I learnt you didn’t need to from JRV over on the TechNet forums. This has some benefits that I will very helpfully, briefly and probably incorrectly list below:

  • Don’t have to use syncHash when updating the form
  • One less runspace for the form
  • Having a form in its own runspace creates additional overhead and possible errors

So to display the form I would use something like the below:

[xml]$xml = @"
<Window
    xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2006/xaml/presentation"
    Title="Counter" Height="119" Width="351.5" ResizeMode="CanMinimize" WindowStartupLocation="CenterScreen">
    <Grid HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" >
        <Label Name="Label" Content="0" HorizontalAlignment="Left" Margin="16.666,9.333,0,0" VerticalAlignment="Top" FontSize="18"/>
        <Button Name="Button" Content="Start" HorizontalAlignment="Center" VerticalAlignment="Top" Width="75" Margin="123.25,63,123.25,0"/>
    </Grid>
</Window>
"@

$Reader=(New-Object System.Xml.XmlNodeReader $xml)
$Window=[Windows.Markup.XamlReader]::Load($Reader)

$Label = $Window.FindName("Label")
$Button = $Window.FindName("Button")

$Window.ShowDialog() | Out-Null

Which will give us the below form:

But what if I want the button press to make the label number increase? I would use something like this on the button press:

[xml]$xml = @"
<Window
    xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2006/xaml/presentation"
    Title="Counter" Height="119" Width="351.5" ResizeMode="CanMinimize" WindowStartupLocation="CenterScreen">
    <Grid HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" >
        <Label Name="Label" Content="0" HorizontalAlignment="Left" Margin="16.666,9.333,0,0" VerticalAlignment="Top" FontSize="18"/>
        <Button Name="Button" Content="Start" HorizontalAlignment="Center" VerticalAlignment="Top" Width="75" Margin="123.25,63,123.25,0"/>
    </Grid>
</Window>
"@

$Reader=(New-Object System.Xml.XmlNodeReader $xml)
$Window=[Windows.Markup.XamlReader]::Load($Reader)

$Label = $Window.FindName("Label")
$Button = $Window.FindName("Button")

$Button.Add_Click({
    $counter = 1 

    do{
        Start-Sleep -Milliseconds 5
        $label.content = $counter
        [System.Windows.Forms.Application]::DoEvents()
        $counter += 1
    }while ($counter -le 5000)

})

$Window.ShowDialog() | Out-Null

This produces a form which increases the label up to 5000 when the button is pressed. You can see this below:

But what if I want to actually run something in a runspace. For example, test the connection to google.com? Then I would use the below code:

[xml]$xml = @"
<Window
    xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2006/xaml/presentation"
    Title="Counter" Height="119" Width="351.5" ResizeMode="CanMinimize" WindowStartupLocation="CenterScreen">
    <Grid HorizontalAlignment="Stretch" VerticalAlignment="Stretch" >
        <Label Name="Label" Content="0" HorizontalAlignment="Left" Margin="16.666,9.333,0,0" VerticalAlignment="Top" FontSize="18"/>
        <Button Name="Button" Content="Start" HorizontalAlignment="Center" VerticalAlignment="Top" Width="75" Margin="123.25,63,123.25,0"/>
    </Grid>
</Window>
"@

$Reader=(New-Object System.Xml.XmlNodeReader $xml)
$Window=[Windows.Markup.XamlReader]::Load($Reader)

$Label = $Window.FindName("Label")
$Button = $Window.FindName("Button")

$Button.Add_Click({
    $syncHash = [hashtable]::Synchronized(@{})
    $Runspace = [runspacefactory]::CreateRunspace()
    $Runspace.ApartmentState = "STA"
    $Runspace.ThreadOptions = "ReuseThread"
    $Runspace.Open()
    $Runspace.SessionStateProxy.SetVariable("syncHash",$syncHash)

    $powershell = [powershell]::Create().AddScript({
        $connection = Test-Connection -ComputerName google.com -Count 5
        $syncHash.output = [math]::Round(($connection.ResponseTime | Measure-Object -Average).Average)
    })

    $powershell.Runspace = $Runspace

    $Object = $powershell.BeginInvoke()

    do {
        Start-Sleep -Milliseconds 50
        [System.Windows.Forms.Application]::DoEvents()
    }while(!$Object.IsCompleted)

    $powershell.EndInvoke($Object)
    $powershell.Dispose()

    $label.Content = $syncHash.output
})

$Window.ShowDialog() | Out-Null

All the above examples will stay responsive whilst the action is performed. There are a couple of different methods to do this as you can see above, for anything that takes some time to complete, a runspace is needed. But when you are updating the form quickly, like the counter, then no runspace is needed. 

Enjoy!

Handling Textbox Keydown Events

Welcome to another instalment of “how much can I confused myself today…”

Here, I will you how to recognise a keydown event on a textbox and also how to “identify” which key was pressed. This was useful to me because I wanted a button to be pressed when the user pressed the enter key whilst typing in a textbox. Similar to when you type a question into Google and press enter instead of pressing the search button.

First, I found what control I want the event to handle and added a raiseevent onto the button I wanted pressing. You can see this below:

$syncHash.Textbox.Add_KeyDown({
    if ($args[1].key -eq 'Enter'){
        $syncHash.Button.RaiseEvent((New-Object -TypeName System.Windows.RoutedEventArgs -ArgumentList $([System.Windows.Controls.Button]::ClickEvent)))
    }
})

So in this scenario, when the user wants to search they can just press enter in the textbox and the button will be pressed. You can also do this for the entire form. Meaning that if you have multiple textboxes and want an enter in any of them to press a button, you can just put the handler onto the entire form. You can see this below:

$syncHash.Window.Add_KeyDown({
    if ($args[1].key -eq 'Enter'){
        $syncHash.Button.RaiseEvent((New-Object -TypeName System.Windows.RoutedEventArgs -ArgumentList $([System.Windows.Controls.Button]::ClickEvent)))

    }
})

Enjoy!

Adding an BASE64 Icon to a WPF GUI

Nice and simple one today. I’m going to show you how to add an icon to a WPF GUI in PowerShell using BASE64 data.

I won’t be putting my BASE64 data into this post since its a MASSIVELY long string of characters but it should look something like this ” iVBORw0KG…”

First, we need to create a new variable to hold the data and then use the bitmapimage object to convert the data into a usable icon. You can see this below:

[string]$script:base64=@"
iVBORw0KGgo...
"@

$script:bitmap = New-Object System.Windows.Media.Imaging.BitMapImage
$bitmap.BeginInit()
$bitmap.StreamSource = [System.IO.MemoryStream][System.Convert]::FromBase64String($base64)
$bitmap.EndInit()
$bitmap.Freeze()

After this we can simply assign the new icon to the form using the code below:

$window.Icon = $bitmap

Enjoy!

Responsive PowerShell WPF Form Introduction #2

Following on from my last post, I’m going to show you how to update a textbox using a button on the same form. I will be adding the following code starting on line 38:

#BUTTON LOGIC
$syncHash.Button.Add_Click({

    $syncHash.Window.Dispatcher.Invoke(
        [action]{
            $syncHash.TextBox.AppendText("This is a test")
        }
    )
})

This is fairly basic in what it does. It just adds “This is a test” to the textbox. Say if I want the button to run a task and then update the textbox with the results, but the results took a long time to come, the form would freeze. This is because whatever command you run in the same runspace as the GUI, takes controls and stops the GUI being responsive.

So, what I’m going to do is ping google 5 times, get the average from all of those and then update the textbox without the GUI becoming unresponsive. To do this, I’m going to create a new runspace and add the code I want to run. You can see this below:

#BUTTON LOGIC
$syncHash.Button.Add_Click({
    #ASSIGNING HOST VARIABLE
    $syncHash.host = $Host
    #CREATING NEW RUNSPACE
    $pingrunspace = [runspacefactory]::CreateRunspace()
    $pingrunspace.ApartmentState = "STA"
    $pingrunspace.ThreadOptions = "ReuseThread"
    $pingrunspace.Open()
    #PUTTING THE SYNCHASH VARIABLE INSIDE THE NEW RUNSPACE
    $pingrunspace.SessionStateProxy.SetVariable("syncHash",$syncHash)

    #THIS IS THE CODE THAT WILL BE EXECUTED IN THE NEW RUNSPACE
    $code = {

        #CONNECTION TO GOOGLE AND CALCULATING AVERAGE IN NEW RUNSPACE
        $connection = Test-Connection -ComputerName google.co.uk -Count 5
        $average = [math]::Round(($connection.responsetime | Measure-Object -Average).Average)
        #UPDATING THE TEXTBOX WITH CONNECTION AVERAGE IN NEW RUNSPACE
        $syncHash.Window.Dispatcher.Invoke(
            [action]{
                $syncHash.TextBox.AppendText($average)
            }
        )

    }
        
    #ADDING AND RUNNING THE CODE IN THE NEW RUNSPACE
    $PSInstance = [powershell]::Create().AddScript($code)
    $PSinstance.Runspace = $pingrunspace
    $job = $PSinstance.BeginInvoke()
    
})

This will run the code in a separate runspace to the GUI and allow you to interact with it whilst the commands complete in the background.

Just in case you want the entire this, this is what the whole file looks like 🙂

#CREATE HASHTABLE AND RUNSPACE FOR GUI
$syncHash = [hashtable]::Synchronized(@{})
$newRunspace =[runspacefactory]::CreateRunspace()
$newRunspace.ApartmentState = "STA"
$newRunspace.ThreadOptions = "ReuseThread"         
$newRunspace.Open()
$newRunspace.SessionStateProxy.SetVariable("syncHash",$syncHash)      
#BUILD GUI AND ADD TO RUNSPACE CODE
$psCmd = [PowerShell]::Create().AddScript({   
    [xml]$xaml = @"
    <Window
    xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/winfx/2006/xaml/presentation"
    Name="Window" Height="400" Width="600">
    <Grid>
        <Grid.RowDefinitions>
            <RowDefinition Height="Auto" />
            <RowDefinition Height="Auto" />
        </Grid.RowDefinitions>
        <Grid.ColumnDefinitions>
            <ColumnDefinition Width="Auto" />
        </Grid.ColumnDefinitions>

        <Button Name="Button" Content="Press" Height="200" Width="580" Grid.Row="0" Grid.Column="0" />
        <TextBox Name="Textbox" Height="200" Width="580" Grid.Row="1" Grid.Column="0" />
    </Grid>
</Window>
"@
  
    #INTERPRET AND LOAD THE GUI
    $reader=(New-Object System.Xml.XmlNodeReader $xaml)
    $syncHash.Window=[Windows.Markup.XamlReader]::Load( $reader )

    #EXTRACT THE CONTROLS FROM THE GUI
    $syncHash.TextBox = $syncHash.window.FindName("Textbox")
    $syncHash.Button = $syncHash.Window.FindName("Button")

    #BUTTON LOGIC
    $syncHash.Button.Add_Click({

        $syncHash.host = $Host
        $pingrunspace = [runspacefactory]::CreateRunspace()
        $pingrunspace.ApartmentState = "STA"
        $pingrunspace.ThreadOptions = "ReuseThread"
        $pingrunspace.Open()
        $pingrunspace.SessionStateProxy.SetVariable("syncHash",$syncHash)

        $code = {

            $connection = Test-Connection -ComputerName google.co.uk -Count 5
            $average = [math]::Round(($connection.responsetime | Measure-Object -Average).Average)
            $syncHash.Window.Dispatcher.Invoke(
                [action]{
                    $syncHash.TextBox.AppendText($average)
                }
            )

        }

        $PSInstance = [powershell]::Create().AddScript($code)
        $PSinstance.Runspace = $pingrunspace
        $job = $PSinstance.BeginInvoke()
    })


    #FINALISE AND CLOSE GUI RUNSPACE UPON EXITING
    $syncHash.Window.ShowDialog() | Out-Null
    $syncHash.Error = $Error
    $Runspace.Close()
    $Runspace.Dispose()
    
})
#LOAD RUNSPACE WITH GUI IN
$psCmd.Runspace = $newRunspace
$data = $psCmd.BeginInvoke()

Enjoy!