Words and Software

Technical writing/user assistance in Microsoft.Azure Intelligent Systems Service (ISS). (old: Data Protection Manager and Operations Manager)

October, 2006

  • Cluster support: comparing SP1 and DPM V2

    Today I got a lesson on "cluster-aware" and "not cluster-aware". With my new-found understanding, let's look at the versions of DPM and how they work with server clusters.

    • DPM 2006 is not cluster-aware and cannot protect a server that is in a server cluster.
    • With Service Pack 1, DPM 2006 is cluster-agnostic, and so it can protect a server that is in a server cluster. With SP1, you can install a file agent on a clustered server and protect the file resources on that physical node. When you select members for a protection group, the node with the file agent appears like any other physical server. DPM does not "see" it as a cluster.
    • DPM V2 is fully cluster-aware and understands all cluster configurations, including the advanced configurations of CCR & LCR with Exchange 2007. Not only can you protect a server that is in a server cluster, DPM V2 is aware that it is a cluster and allows you to select resources for protection using the virtual name of the resource. In addition, when you install the protection agent on a cluster node, DPM automatically selects the other nodes for installation as well. Because DPM V2 is cluster-aware, it can continue to protect resources on a planned failover of the cluster node.
  • DPM SP1 released - download it now!

    The eagerly awaited Service Pack 1 to DPM 2006 is now available for download. Important: if you are running a pre-release version of SP1, you should uninstall the pre-release SP1 before you install this final version.

    For details on the fixes and improvements packaged in SP1, take a look at What's New in DPM SP1?.

  • Your tech support call could be free

    I am embarrassed that I didn't know this until a recent (and very passionate) internal email discussion on customer support brought it up, but if I didn't know...maybe you didn't either?

    • If you installed Windows XP on your computer (it didn't come with the computer when you purchased it), your first 2 support requests submitted online or by a phone call are free. And if you bought Windows XP and are having trouble installing it, phone support for installation is unlimited.
      Get Windows XP help
    • Having troubles with Windows Update? Unlimited free support by email, with a response time of 1 business day.
      Get Windows Update help

    I've never called or emailed Microsoft for help with my home computer because I thought there was always a cost. (Well, plus because I felt I should be able to figure out any problem myself -- I work there after all!) So I've probably spent many hours troubleshooting issues that the support experts could have handled much more quickly. I'll bet that the support option was mentioned in the product documentation or on the box as well, and I'm guilty of not reading it. I should probably retitle this, "The Hubris of Working at Microsoft".

  • DPM V2: Exchange Cluster Continuous Replication

    Did you notice the reference in the DPM V2 Product Information FAQ to support for Continuous Cluster Replication (CCR)? I knew it was an Exchange 2007 feature but not much else, and had to do some poking around. I found a great blog post about CCR back in July and clipped it so I could share it when the time came that I could start talking about V2.

    For a great explanation of CCR and how it works, take a look at Exchange 2007 Cluster Continuous Replication (CCR) by Scott Schnoll. Enjoy!

  • DPM V2 First Look: a webcast

    You are invited to join us for a webcast about the next version of Data Protection Manager (DPM V2, as we fondly call it). This is a great opportunity to hear about V2's features and improvements, see some cool stuff, and pin down DPM's technical product manager, Jason, with your sharp questions.

    The webcast will take place online Friday, October 27, at 12:30 PM Eastern Time. For more information, see the webcast event details.

  • DPM V2 Beta 1: installation walk-through

    Arlindo has posted a great walk-through (with screenshots!) of the Beta 1 installation process.

    We provide installation instructions in the Deployment Guide that you can download with the Beta 1 product at Microsoft Connect, but if you're not at the download point yet yourself, this gives you an excellent overview of the procedure!

  • DPM V2 Beta 1: join the domain first!

    If you try to install DPM V2 Beta 1 on a server that does not belong to a domain, the installation will fail. Join the server to a domain first, then install.

    (This only applies to the Beta 1 release.)