• Step-By-Step: Connect an Azure Web App to an existing Virtual Network

    Hello Folks, During an Azure bootcamp, I was asked if there was a way to “connect” an Azure Website (now referred to as Azure Web Apps) to an existing virtual network. As a matter of fact, you can. While you can’t put your Azure Website in an Azure virtual network, you can grants your website access to resources running your VNET. today we’ll look at how we get this done. First, I recommend the following...
  • Step-By-Step: Installing Windows 10 on Oracle VirtualBox

    If Microsoft Hyper-V and VMware Workstation 11 are not your first choice to test Windows 10 in a virtualized state, then steps on installing Windows 10 Technical Preview on VirtualBox might be of interest. Oracle’s general-purpose virtual management offering on x86 hardware is also free and can also be of use to test Windows 10 without disturbing your existing environment. The steps in this post...
  • Step-By-Step: Moving An Active Directory Database to A New Location

    When setting up Active Directory, the IT Administrator is given an option to select the folder path to copy the Active Directory database files to. It is advised to always to use a separate partition to save the database files instead of using the default C:\Windows\NTDS\ folder path. This provides an easier opportunity to move the Active Directory database to different location should disk space on...
  • Step-by-Step: Protect Azure VMs with Azure Backup

    Hello Folks, I’ve covered this topic before from many different angles. Step-by-Step: Setup the Online Backup Service for Windows Server 2012 Step-By-Step: Backup your PC data to Azure Step-By-Step: Backup your PC data to Azure – Follow Up! Step-By-Step: Restoring your PC data from Azure Azure Backup – New Functionality Today we’ll look at protecting your data on your Azure virtual machines from loss...
  • Step-By-Step: App Deployment via Microsoft Intune

    Microsoft Intune, part of Microsoft’s EMS offering , enables cloud based mobile device management, mobile application management, and PC management. Organizations can utilize Intune to provide supported users access to corporate applications, data, and resources from virtually anywhere on almost any device securely. Intune also provides the ability to push required applications to devices...
  • Step-By-Step: Active Directory Optimization

    End of support for Windows Server 2003 is fast approaching. With this in mind, most IT administrators are currently performing a migration to newer versions of Windows Server which in many cases includes an Active Directory migration. One item most do not take into consideration is the state of the Active Directory database after the migration is completed. Like any other database Active Directory...
  • Step-By-Step: Image based RemoteApp Enablement via an Existing Azure VM - Part 2

    Hello folks, Last week I started this topic by looking at how you Create your Image based on an Existing Azure VM . Well I knew I was not done… I had just forgotten to state that I was going to finish the process in my next post. Sorry @joe_elway … What was missing was the import process. So today we’ll cover that together. So. when I left off we had just created a VM...
  • RemoteApp: Creating your Image based on an Existing Azure VM

    Hello folks, Last May (2014) we announced exciting updates to Microsoft Azure . One of these updates was Azure RemoteApp. It gave companies the ability to provide mobile employees access to Windows applications across a range of devices. Combining Microsoft’s powerful Remote Desktop Services capabilities with the scale and cost-efficiencies of Microsoft Azure. I wrote about it in the following articles...
  • Step-By-Step: Enabling App Passwords in Azure AD with Two-Factor Authentication

    For some, passwords alone are not enough to ensure secure access to specific applications. In the Microsoft Virtual Academy video entitled Getting Started with Microsoft Azure Active Directory , I demonstrated how to turn on two-factor authentication with Azure Active Directory. However, what if you have applications that don’t work with two-factor authentication? The following steps will provide...
  • Top 3 Key Security Improvements Found in Windows 10 Technical Preview

    Security is in the eyes of the beholder. A quote which holds steadfast amidst the IT Professional community. While securing the core or datacenter is important to most IT administrators, security planning for client end software is equally important. Microsoft addresses this need ushering in its latest client offering, Windows 10 , along with further evolution of the client software’s security...
  • Step-By-Step: Testing Windows 10 Via VMware Workstation

    At a recent event at the Nova Scotia Community College, the ask was put forward with regards to testing Windows 10 Technical Preview on VMware Workstation. This is in fact possible and here are the steps to enable the requested setup. Step 1: Download the Windows 10 Technical Preview ISO Visit the Windows Insiders webpage Register to be a Windows Insider Download the 32 or 64 bit version...
  • Step-By-Step: Creating a Windows 10 To Go Key Inside a Hyper-V VM

    Windows 10 will include many cool features to enable system administrators in securing client computing. Testing is key and this blog has detailed many ways IT Professionals can test Windows 10 Technical Preview without the requirement of loading it on a production machine. So I thought I would share some of my findings as I have been testing Windows 10 TP for a few weeks. Like many IT Professionals...
  • Planned Maintenance – Azure Style

    Hello Folks, All of us IT pros and DevOps people need to have some time for patching servers, applications, making changes to the infrastructure. It’s part of our lives. it’s something we have wrestled with for years. You ensure that all your users know about it, you plan for it, and you depend on it for the well being of your environments. The same is true for Microsoft Azure. We need to maintain...
  • Step-By-Step: Utilizing PowerShell History Viewer in Windows Server 2012 R2

    PowerShell utilization has always been daunting for IT professionals. While there are a great many resources to assist IT Professionals in learning PowerShell , some simply are more comfortable with enabling functionality via the Windows Server 2012 R2 GUI. Time is never on an IT administrator’s side, however, PowerShell can address this conundrum through the automation capabilities it provides...
  • Step-By-Step: Setting Up Active Directory Sites, Subnets & Site-Links

    Two topologies are found in a successful network, Physical Topology and Logical Topology . Physical Topology represents the structure of the network which includes network topologies, hardware placements, IP address allocations. Logical Topology represents the security boundaries of said network, network services etc. In an Active Directory infrastructure setup, the Domain represents the logical topology...
  • Final Word on IOPS in Azure

    Hello Folks, In the past few weeks I’ve been spending some of my spare time in trying to explore the capabilities of Azure where disk performance is concerned. I did that in response to some ITPros, that had expressed doubt that they could reproduce performances they were able to achieve on premises. Well, let me tell you that I was amazed of the results. In the first posts: Azure Disk IOPS and Virtual...
  • Azure Disk IOPS and Virtual Machines in IaaS Part II

    Hello Folk, It’s been a while since we talked about IOPS. In fact the last post I wrote on the subject was Azure Disk IOPS and Virtual in IaaS back in November. Since then, I managed to get in the Premium storage preview, so today I thought it would be fun to see how many IOPS I can squeeze out of these machines. Before diving into this. I do recommend the following MVA modules as a primer. Windows...
  • Utilizing Office 365 Staged Migration to Mitigating Risk

    Currently there are three scenarios for an Office 365 Migration. They are as follows: Cutover Staged Hybrid The Cutover scenario requires the export of all email and content of an on-premise Exchange implementation. Once completed, all the exported data is then imported to Office 365, followed by changing the MX records. Risk to this scenario is dependent upon the Window of DNS cutover...
  • Step-By-Step: Testing Windows Server 2012 R2 via Boot-to-VHD

    Support for Windows Server 2003 is shortly coming to an end. July 14th 2015 to be exact. Many IT professionals have expressed interest in learning how the organization they support will benefit from Windows Server 2012 R2 and while there are many free resources such as Microsoft Virtual Academy and this blog are available, some desire hands on experience to test specific scenarios. Boot-to-VHD is a...
  • BYOD Basics: Enabling Android in the Workplace via the Azure Authenticator App

    Enabling Android in the workplace has always been a challenge for most IT Professionals. Aside from the advancements made by certain OEMs in regards to security , fragmentation of the OS offering is ailment most cannot solve. Coupled with Microsoft Intune or other MDM software, some piece of mind can be achieved. Do remember however that security is in the eye of the beholder. While there is no 100...
  • Step-By-Step: Migrating AD FS 2.0 to AD FS 3.0 for Office365 Single Sign-On

    AD FS 3.0, included in Windows Server 2012 R2 , provides a great deal of advancement over is predecessor. There are a couple different paths when migrating AD FS from version 2.0 to AD FS 3.0. The one detailed below completes a parallel install, exporting the AD FS 2.0 configuration and importing to AD FS 3.0. There are other methods of completing this task, but this method is preferred as you can...
  • Azure Backup – New Functionality

    Hello Folks, We’ve covered the “Backup” topic many times lately. Step-by-Step: Setup the Online Backup Service for Windows Server 2012 Step-By-Step: Backup your PC data to Azure Step-By-Step: Backup your PC data to Azure – Follow Up! Step-By-Step: Restoring your PC data from Azure However, On February 16 we announced some improvements in the Azure Backup capabilities. These improvements include Long...
  • Step-By-Step: Managing Windows Server 2012 R2 Via Windows 10

    Details are beginning to emerge as to how Windows 10 will empower IT Professionals . What such detail made know recently is the availability of Server Manager specifically made available for Windows 10. Server Manager for Windows 10 provides the same robust capabilities to manage multiple servers, roles and features. An excellent addition to any IT professional's toolkit, Server Manager for Windows...
  • Step-By-Step: Migrating Windows Server 2003 FSMO Roles To Windows Server 2012 R2

    With it being over 10 years since the Windows Server 2003 release, there is now less than 5 months left as of the time of this post was published for official Microsoft support. This guide was created as additional resource addressing the need to transfer DC FSMO roles from windows server 2003 to windows server 2012 R2. In Windows DC environment, FSMO roles hold all the required information regarding...
  • Step-by-Step: Managing Traffic for Workloads in Azure

    Hello Folks, Last week I wrote about load balancing workloads in Azure . That generated some other questions, such as “How do I ensure that my stakeholders connect to the closest instance in my web farm?”, “How do I ensure the best possible performance for my Web applications?”. Microsoft Azure Traffic Manager allows you to control the distribution of traffic to your specified...