So if 4th is strictly using RSAT... would 5th be full automation using SCCM, SCVMM, Orchestrator, and App Controller?
Yes, I believe so. Those would be tools in the Microsoft toolset for that. They tend to take a very different approach than many of their competitors and it's been a while since I've used it. Not sure if SCCM goes all of the way to defined state or just really heavily automated forth form. But I think you can get to that state.
I believe it is properly state defined (fifth form) but not code defined like most of the alternatives.
I think I got lost in all the clutter... but why do you separate Remote GUI from Remote CLI ?
Essentially "automatable interface" vs non-automatable interface. Not that GUIs cannot be automated, but effectively they cannot be.
Very good read. I'm sharing your philosophy and like I said yesterday, I'm a console fetishist. You just need to use what you have when you are in a recovery console or when your server just does not have access to that NFS export or SMB share where all your fancy tools and scripts are.
I think it's way more important to understand how things actually work. This will also help a lot when it comes to tracking down errors.