Private Clouds are increasingly important to the efficient operations of your business. The System Center 2012 products provide everything you need to build, secure, maintain and manage your Private Cloud. You can get all of the latest Betas, Release Candidates and Evaluations by clicking one button!
This week I am in San Jose working on a very cool project. The US IT Evangelist team has been building a REAL Private Cloud that we can use for training, testing, and showing our customers how it all works in the real world. Usually, when we deliver presentations to a live audience or during a webcast, we are limited to what we can show using our laptops. Some of us have invested in home labs to help extend our demos, but even that doesn’t let us mimic a true production environment effectively. For this project, we acquired some budget to purchase some “big iron” which is being housed with a hosting provider. We are going on site in waves to build out, document, and troubleshoot our private cloud implementation. In each wave we are tearing it all down, then taking the documentation created from the previous wave to re-build from scratch. This allows all of us to provide quality assurance checks against the configuration and get our hands dirty.
For me, this is particularly exciting! I have been a computer geek all of my life, but until coming to work for Microsoft, I never actually worked in the industry. I have been in datacenters before, but I have never been the guy that built servers, installed the software, and implemented the designs. Now, I finally get to be a part of a team that is doing just that!
Today is Day 1 and we have until Thursday to wrap it all up. I am picking up my co-worker, Brian Lewis, this afternoon and will have Matt Hester and Blain Barton working from remote. I picked up a case of Red Bull for inspiration and I have mapped out the locations of the local Krispy Cremes when the Red Bull isn’t enough to keep us energized! Keep and eye on the blog and on my Twitter for periodic live updates!
Two days ago I posted about the Technet Events that are coming to Bellevue and Portland in November. I am happy to announce that we are bolting on some additional events in the same location on the same days. We will be having IT Camps in the same locations as the Technet events so now you can take off the entire day from work and get some great information to help you in your job!
For this round of the IT Camps we will be providing a group of topics for you to choose from as well as let you suggest your own topics. We will then take a vote to see which topics are the most in demand. We will then deliver presentations as well as solicit feedback from the audience on the topics selected. I will be leading these sessions and will have a large number of virtual machines and demo environments at my disposal to help with the open discussion on the topics YOU select. We hope this format will encourage you to bring topics to the table that YOU want to hear about and that are important to you – right now. I can’t guarantee that we will be able to address all requested topics, but we are going to try!
You can register for the events in two ways --
Seattle (Bellevue) IT Camp via the Microsoft Events Web Site or via Eventbrite.
Portland IT Camp via the Microsoft Events Web Site or via Eventbrite.
Please register and feel free to invite your fellow IT Professionals to the IT Camps as well as the Technet Events!
We have a series of events coming to some cities here in the west that are focused on Private Cloud. In some cities we will also be having IT Camps on the same day which will allow you to carry on the conversation about Private Cloud and other subjects important to IT Pros. I will make a separate post for the IT Camp events.
At the events that I am hosting in Bellevue and Portland, I will be bringing my laptop Private Cloud solution based upon the How to build a Free Private Cloud using Microsoft Technologies post I made in early September. I will be using it for some of the demos along with some new features from System Center 2012. If you would like to check out some of the other products that will be showcased during the sessions, you can get more information and download them from my Your Private Cloud Toolbox post.
Get Ready for Tomorrow, Today - Hyper-V Virtualization for the Cloud
Virtualization is one of the critical elements of networks operations of all kinds. Virtualization is a key to cloud operations. Joins us as we discuss the key components of virtualization that provide the operational foundation for both Public and Private Cloud.
Private Cloud 201: Microsoft Private Cloud Tools and Technologies
So you have heard the private cloud story from a 101 level and you want to know more. Join us as we discuss Private cloud in greater detail with a focus on the tools and technologies that make Private Cloud such an appetizing It and business opportunity for business both large and small.
In some of the cities, we will also have a quick 30 minute session on Forefront Identity Management as Identity management is a key puzzle piece when you consider Private Cloud scenarios.
The event will kick off at 8:30 AM and end by 12:30 PM with check in at 8:00 AM.
Following is a list of all the cities, dates, locations and registration links:
Microsoft Portland Office
Our next monthly meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, November 2, 2011 at Lincoln Square Center in Bellevue at 6:00PM.
Session Details Our guest speaker will be Joe Davies, a Principal Writer for Windows Server at Microsoft. The topic of his presentation is "Network Access Protection (NAP) Technical Overview."
Please join us for an in-depth technical discussion of the NAP platform and its implementation in Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2. NAP is the Network Access Control (NAC) solution built into Windows and can be used to control access to network resources based on a client computer’s identity and system health compliance with organizational security policies. In addition to built-in support for system heath validation based on the Windows Security Center and enforcement for DHCP, 802.1X, IPsec, and remote access VPN-based connections, NAP is also a platform for third-party software vendors and system integrators to create complete and customized NAC solutions.
Joe has been teaching and writing about Windows networking technologies since 1993 and is the author of eight books from Microsoft Press. Joe also writes The Cable Guy column for TechNet Magazine online. Joe's complete bio is available here .
New Members If you are a new member, directions to the Lincoln Center are available on our Web site, or you can click here. Meeting agenda and other details are available in the Announcements link. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions.
RSVP Please make sure that you RSVP so we can plan for the meeting accordingly.
I recently installed SCOM 2007 R2 and SCOM 2012 beta on my home network as a lab for learning, testing and doing demos. Being a SCOM n00b, I have been a little perplexed as to what I should be doing with SCOM. After I installed it and loaded up the console, I asked myself “Now what?”.
SCOM is not really a product that you just load up and start poking around in. It requires some direction. So I took to the web this morning looking for content and thankfully, I didn’t have to look very far. I fired up Bing and queried on “SCOM 2012” as my initial search. I was intrigued by the second link - Q&A Session for Top 5 Reasons to Migrate to SCOM 2012 – so I clicked it. This took me out to Cameron Fuller’s site. Cameron is a SCOM MVP and very active and passionate about SCOM. I read through the Q&A and came across a *fantastic* link to another article he wrote - So, I installed OpsMgr. What’s next?. I think this is great starting point for taking your first steps with SCOM. Not all of the links are still valid (the post is about a year old) but most of it is great stuff. plus, you end up on the System Center Central site which is a great community to be involved with. Any question you have can be dropped in the forums.
TechNet Video: How to Enable Editing of Company Knowledge in SCOM 2007 R2
Download WMV Download | WMA | MP3
System Center Operations Manager 2007 R2 has a feature in management packs that allows for adding “Company Knowledge” to management packs thus enabling a local knowledge base for more information about monitored systems. In this short screencast we will show how to enable this feature and how it can be used to create an internal knowledge base for resolving issues quickly and efficiently.
Technical Content, Technical Experts
The Cloud Experience track at SIC is for experienced developers who want to learn how to leverage the cloud for mobile, social and web app scenarios. No matter what platform or technology you choose to develop for, these sessions will provide you with a deeper understanding of cloud architecture, back end services and business models so you can scale for user demand and grow your business.
Register today using the promo code “azure 200” and attend SIC for only $150 (a $200 savings).
Seattle Interactive Conference (SIC):November 2-3, 2011, The Conference Center at WSCC
TechNet Video: (Part 1) Managing Forefront Threat Management Gateway 2010 using System Center Operations Manager 2007 R2: Finding and Importing the Management Packs
This screencast will walk you through the basics of finding and importing the management packs used for managing and monitoring Microsoft Forefront Threat Management Gateway 2010. We will discuss where and how to find management packs and the different methods of importing them into SCOM 2007 R2.
In the next part of the series, we will discuss the default TMG Management Pack Features and what information they provide to administrators.
In future screencasts on this subject, we will discuss, Alerting, Authoring of new management packs to monitor specific TMG features, Reporting, and Performance Monitoring.
Download WMV Download | WMA | MP3
Please bare with me folks over the next few days while I am working on my blog site. I have had the same format for a long time. It is also a near duplicate of Keith Comb’s site and I want to differentiate myself. I will likely end up with a completely different look and feel to the blog. But I am keeping the custom CSS in case feedback is such that people like the original format better.
Seattle GiveCamp is a weekend-long event where software developers, designers, and database administrators donate their time to create custom software for non-profit organizations. This custom software could be a new website for the nonprofit organization, a small data-collection application to keep track of members, or a application for the Red Cross that automatically emails a blood donor three months after they’ve donated blood to remind them that they are now eligible to donate again. The only limitation is that the project should be scoped to be able to be completed in a weekend.
During GiveCamp, developers are welcome to go home in the evenings or camp out all weekend long. There are usually food and drink provided at the event. There are sometimes even game systems set up for when you and your need a little break! Overall, it’s a great opportunity for people to work together, developing new friendships, and doing something important for their community.
I know they are looking for some additional volunteers. If you are able to assist, please volunteer through the site!
TechNet has a new home for IT architects, implementers, and managers looking for information and resources relating to Microsoft private cloud solutions. I believe this hub will help IT Pros get a handle on the cloud and it’s many variations. I spent some time poking around on the site this morning and I really like the layout.
There is a section for the Microsoft Virtual Academy where you can get FREE training on Private Cloud technologies.
A Community section for finding blogs and wiki’s and other community based Private Cloud portals.
And one of my favorite sections which is near the center of the page is a tabbed section of informative links for the beginner to the advanced covering, Getting Started, Architecture, IaaS, Security, Management, Infrastructure, and Service Management.
TechNet Private Cloud Solution Hub
I will be spending more time on the portal over the next few days and will link to specific areas that I think will be of particular importance to you.
I have run into this pesky problem a few times now since moving from ISA 2006 to TMG2010. I just ran into it again this evening and decided to post the results of my troubleshooting. In this case i am working on a brand new (2 week old) install of TMG 2010 for my home network. When I rebuilt the server two weeks ago, I enabled Remote Desktop to the TMG2010 server then enabled the built-in System Policies for remote RDP connections and all was golden. This evening I was suddenly unable to RDP from any workstation any longer. In fact, I could not RDP from the ISA server to itself. In previous installations of TMG, I would do something like install a non-critical Windows Update, or reboot, or something else equally non-invasive and suddenly I am unable to RDP to my Threat Manage Gateway machine any longer. Tonight when I enabled logging in TMG and then inititate an RDP session. I saw the following in the TMG logs -
The interesting thing is that there isn't actually a denied connection anywhere in the logs. It looks like everything is okay unless you look closely and see the "abortively closed" message above. I wish i could say I know what causes this issue to crop up. Unfortunately I have never been able to actively recreate the issue. It just happens now and then. But after doing a bunch of disgnostics logging, a few netmon traces (worthless btw), I do have a fix for the problem. On the TMG2010 machine, do the following -
Click Start - Type MMC.EXE - press Enter <to open a empty MMC Console>
Add the "Remote Desktop Session Host Configuration" snap-in and set to Local Computer
Select - RD Session Host Configuration - you should see RDP-Tcp in the center panel
Right Click - RDP-Tcp - choose Properties
Select the - Network Adapter - Tab
In the Network Adapter selection box, choose "All network adapters configured with this protocol"
Click - OK
In the menu bar selection - Action --> Disable Connection then re-enable the connection
Right Click - RDP-Tcp - choose Properties
In the Network Adapter selection box, choose "<name of your internal NIC>"
Now, from a remote client test your RDP Client connection to the ISA Server. It should be back in working order. As noted, i don't know what causes the problem to arise, but the fix seems to reset the RDP server so that it will actually answer the RDP clients.