Get or Add Local Group Members to a Remote Computer

Here are a couple of interesting Powershell scripts that can be used to automate the addition of network accounts from one or more AD domains into the local Administrators group on a networked server or computer.

Script 1 will be used to add members of any trusted domain to the local Administrators group on a list of computers. In this example, I am going to add domain groups to the local Administrators group. Script 2 will be used to check group membership of the local Administrators group. The output of this script is exported to a spreadsheet to make review of the results easier.

Here is the scenario. Your manager emails you and says, ‘Hey Patrick old chum, please add these domain accounts from these domains to the local administrative groups on these servers. To make sure that I keep my job I am going to use ficticious names of domains and server.

Step 1: Create a text file called “computers.txt” in the same folder as the scripts. Each line of the text file will have the name or IP address of a networked computer or server on which we want to modify the local Administrators group. Now keep in mind, this process can be set to modify any local group on the list of computers, but I’ve chose the Administrators group for the sake of this discussion.



Step 2: Adding the desired accounts to the Administrators groups on remote computers.

Here is the script that will be used to add the members to the local groups.
add_to_admingroups.ps1 to add
****************************************************************
#add_to_admingroup.ps1
#patrick parkison
#email: patrickparkison@bellsouth.net
#This script uses powershell to add domain accounts (user or groups) to the local administrators
#group on remote computers.
#
#Reference for working with local groups on remote servers.
#http://powershellcommunity.org/Forums/tabid/54/view/topic/postid/1528/Default.aspx

#Get the list of computers to manange.
#Iterate through the list of computers.
foreach($i in (gc .\computers.txt)){

#Write to screen for feedback.
Write-Host “Processing “$i

#Add first user/group to remote Administrators group.
$objUser = [ADSI](“WinNT://DomainA/GroupA”)
$objGroup = [ADSI](“WinNT://$i/Administrators”)
$objGroup.PSBase.Invoke(“Add”,$objUser.PSBase.Path)

#Add second user/group to remote Administrators group.
$objUser = [ADSI](“WinNT://DomainB/GroupB”)
$objGroup = [ADSI](“WinNT://$i/Administrators”)
$objGroup.PSBase.Invoke(“Add”,$objUser.PSBase.Path)

#Add third user/group to remote Administrators group.
$objUser = [ADSI](“WinNT://DomainC/GroupC”)
$objGroup = [ADSI](“WinNT://$i/Administrators”)
$objGroup.PSBase.Invoke(“Add”,$objUser.PSBase.Path)

#Add fourth user/group to remote Administrators group.
$objUser = [ADSI](“WinNT://DomainD/GroupC”)
$objGroup = [ADSI](“WinNT://$i/Administrators”)
$objGroup.PSBase.Invoke(“Add”,$objUser.PSBase.Path)

#Add more accounts as required.

}

This is pretty is a pretty simple script. There are only two key points to look at.
The iteration of the remote computers from the computers.txt file occurs here:

foreach($i in (gc .\computers.txt)){

$i becomes that value of each computer name in the text file.
The second key point is actuall connection and manipulation of the local groups. That is done here:
#Add first user/group to remote Administrators group. $objUser = [ADSI](“WinNT://DomainA/GroupA”) $objGroup = [ADSI](“WinNT://$i/Administrators”) $objGroup.PSBase.Invoke(“Add”,$objUser.PSBase.Path)

Notice that $i will contain the name of each remote computer. Also, Administrators could be replaced by any valid group name.

Here is how the output of the script looks when it runs.

$ Add_to_admingroup.ps1
Processing s30004w014011
Processing 10.87.52.198
$

You would get two possible errors with this script.

The first would be if the group or user account was already a member of the local group that you are updating. That error looks like this:
Exception calling “Invoke” with “2” argument(s): “Exception has been thrown by the target of an invocation.”At I:\Utilities\PowerShellScripts\Local-Groups\add_to_admingroup.ps1:53 char:25+ $objGroup.PSBase.Invoke( <<<< “Add”,$objUser.PSBase.Path)

The second error would be if the remote computer were not found on the network.

That takes care of the first script. Now here is a good method to check the membership of a specific group on a list of remote computers. As indicated above, the output is displayed in a spreadsheet.

The second script is called list_admin_group_members.ps1. Here is the text of the script.

list_admin_group_members.ps1
****************************************************************
#Assign account names to variables.
$group1 = “GroupName1″
$group2 = “GroupName2″
$group3 = “GroupName3″
$group4 = “GroupName4″

#Open a spreadsheet
#Region
$RowCount = 1
#http://www.microsoft.com/technet/scriptcenter/resources/qanda/sept06/hey0908.mspx
$a = New-Object -comobject Excel.Application
$b = $a.Workbooks.Add()
$c = $b.Worksheets.Item(1)
$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,1) = “Server”
$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,2) = $group1
$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,3) = $group2
$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,4) = $group3
$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,5) = $group4
$a.Range(“A1:E1″).Select()
$a.Selection.Font.Bold = $True
$a.Columns.AutoFit()
$a.Visible = $True

#EndRegion

foreach($i in (gc .\computers.txt)){
Write-Host “Processing server $i.”
$script:RowCount += 1 #Increment row count.
$group =[ADSI]“WinNT://$i/Administrators”
$members = @($group.psbase.Invoke(“Members”))
$adminGrp = $members foreach {$_.GetType().InvokeMember(“Name”, ‘GetProperty’, $null, $_, $null)}
$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,1) = $i
$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,2) = ($adminGrp -contains $group1)
$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,3) = ($adminGrp -contains $group2)
$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,4) = ($adminGrp -contains $group3)
$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,5) = ($adminGrp -contains $group4)
}
$a.Range(“B2″).Select()
$a.ActiveWindow.FreezePanes = $True
$a.Columns.AutoFit()

Here is the part of that section that you’ll want to modify:
$group1 = “GroupName1″
$group2 = “GroupName2″
$group3 = “GroupName3″
$group4 = “GroupName4″

This assigns that the actual text that you are looking for. You would change this to a real group name that exist in the domain(s) that you are searching.

There are two main sections to this script. The first section is used to setup the spreadsheet. This is pretty useful by itself. I’ve included the reference where I learned how to configure the spreadsheet. If you do much reporting you’ll find that to be a pretty useful link.

$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,1) = “Server”
$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,2) = $group1
$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,3) = $group2
$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,4) = $group3
$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,5) = $group4

This sets up the first row of the spreadsheet, or the column header. You could added or remove the group names as required. Just add any addition groups in subsequent columns, i.e. $RowCount,X

The next three lines are used to manipulate the bold and width features of the spreadsheet. They simply make the spreadsheet more readable.

$a.Range(“A1:E1″).Select()
$a.Selection.Font.Bold = $True
$a.Columns.AutoFit()

The next section will iterate iterate through the text file computers.txt, and search the Administrators group on each computer.


foreach($i in (gc .\computers.txt)){

If you wanted to check the membership on a different group you would change that here.

$group =[ADSI]“WinNT://$i/Administrators”

This piece of code does the actual work of searching the remote computer for the group membership.

$group =[ADSI]“WinNT://$i/Administrators”
$members = @($group.psbase.Invoke(“Members”))
$adminGrp = $members foreach {$_.GetType().InvokeMember(“Name”, ‘GetProperty’, $null, $_, $null)}

And for the output to the spreadsheet, for each cell the name of each domain account is checked against the value of $adminGrp.

If the value of $groupX is found in the contents of $adminGrp, then a True is placed into the current cell, other wise a False is placed into the current cell.

$c.Cells.Item($RowCount,2) = ($adminGrp -contains $group1)

Finally some final manipulation of the spreadsheet is done for neatness.

$a.Range(“B2″).Select()
$a.ActiveWindow.FreezePanes = $True
$a.Columns.AutoFit()

Here is how the output looks on the screen looks when the script is run:

$ .\list_admin_group_members.ps1
True
True
Processing server s30004w014011.
Processing server 10.87.52.198.
True
True
$

Also here is a screenshot of how the spreadsheet looks once the script has run:

That’s it for this script. Please let me know if you have any questions, or issues when running this script.

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About Patrick
I am a Senior Systems Administrator for AT&T. I have been with AT&T for over 15 years. I spend most of my time working with Microsoft Powershell in an effort to find creative ways to manage the data on our file shares. I’ve found Powershell to be a useful, and interesting way to perform Sys. Admin functions.

One Response to Get or Add Local Group Members to a Remote Computer

  1. Greg says:

    Is there any way you can use the same script but have it list out all of the groups and corresponding members to each group?

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