Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Use WMI Management Tools (especially the WMI Browser)

WMI means Windows Management Instrumentation, with it locally or via network one can access nearly all settings of a computer, either for reading or writing
When programming with C# we can also use it and with it read out or manage interesting system settings, for example creating a system restore point.
This post is not about .Net programming but about the usage of the WMI Administrative Tools, more precisely about the usage of the Object Browser contained in it.
As the name already says, with these tools designed by Microsoft the WMI can be managed, information about available classes etc. can be accessed.
For us programmiers probably the WMI Object Browser is interesting. With it the namespaces and classes of the WMI can be browsed, partially also some more detailed information about purpose and usage of them is displayed - which is very useful, for example if we want to read out some property and do not know what the attributes mean.
Since one has to pay attention to certain things for getting the browser to run, I here want to post a quick guide (Remark: My Windows is running in German, therefore the images show the German interface. I hope you still can get what I mean):

  • First you have to open the file "browser.htm" from the WMI Tools folder with the Internet Explorer  as Administrator, in my case the path is C:\Program Files (x86)\WMI Tools\browser.htm. The execution of blocked content has to be allowed.
  • With current IE versions the browser does not work, therefore we have to chose IE  7 as compatibility mode.  For that we press F12 and and select (Internet Explorer 7) in Document Mode and User-Agent.

  • Then some window should pop, in which you can connect to a namespace.

  • Eventually when you are connected you should get to see a window like this, in which then, like described before, the available classes etc. are listed.

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