Notes From The Field

Miscellaneous Ramblings from a Microsoft Consultant

Notes From The Field

  • Fun With Office 365

    I’m experimenting now with Office 365. I rather like it. But, let me back up a bit. A while ago, as an exercise in educating myself on Exchange, I began playing around with configuring my own email server at the house so that I could both learn Exchange...
  • Storage Spaces Expansion

    After my last foray into creating a new Storage Space, I converted my file server’s data partition to a storage space with parity using the original 2 1.5TB drives plus a new 2TB drive. (I obtained this drive as a way to expand my space since I...
  • More On Storage Spaces and ReFS

    Since my last post below, I have had quite some time to work with Storage Spaces and ReFS along side of more traditional hardware RAID. I’ve gotten some good perspective on the technology now after having used it and the “old stuff” side by side through...
  • New Windows Server 2012 Storage Spaces

    It seems that when you begin using Windows Server 2012 Storage Spaces and new disks, you get to play with the underlying fabric of reality. Well, that’s what it seems like. Blank disks are called “Primordial” in this console...
  • Windows 8 Released

    Today, a news bulletin has been release announcing the release of Windows 8. http://windowsteamblog.com/windows/b/bloggingwindows/archive/2012/08/01/windows-8-has-reached-the-rtm-milestone.aspx This is exciting news, of course. But, I haven’t...
  • Declarative Provisioning in FIM and DN Values

    Now that my customers are beginning to move forward with FIM 2010 implementations away from ILM 2007, I’ve begun to dig more deeply into configurations for “real life” scenarios and attempt to apply some of the lessons I’ve learned from my training in...
  • Parallel Task Execution for ILM/FIM using PowerShell

    Last year, I wrote about how I would use VBScript to execute run profiles in ILM/FIM in parallel (mixed with some serial syncs since they don’t behave well when run in parallel). I’ve now created, with the help of a few friends and other TechNet/MSDN...
  • SP1 And Dynamic Memory

    With the release of Service Pack 1 for Windows Server 2008 R2 and Windows 7 , a few new features were added to Windows. My favorite is, by far, Dynamic Memory for virtual machines on Hyper-V. What this does is basically allow you to set a range of memory...
  • Parallel Task Execution For ILM/FIM With VBScript

    In my quest for a better way to customize run profiles for FIM, I thought I’d utilize the scripting method since I’ve heard there are problems running the MASequencer resource kit utility on FIM2010. So, I turned to the tried-and-true VBScript...
  • Forefront Identity Manager 2010 Now RTM

    As of today, my favorite product – or at least the one I’m using most these days – has now had the next version released to manufacturing: FIM 2010 . This release, however, is not just an incremental release, but a whole new product. Yes, the “old” sync...
  • Easy Web Application Installs

    Normally, when people start talking about blogging or hosting a custom web application like Gallery or WordPress , they tend to think of hosting them on Linux. This has generally been the case for a long time. In fact, for a while, I even hosted my personal...
  • Some Quirks With IE8

    Today, checking my email via Outlook Web Access, I noticed a difference in how graphic inserts are handled in the email viewing window. Say you insert a link to a picture in your email from a public unencrypted web site. When you open the message in OWA...
  • A Small Concern When Virtualizing Domain Controllers - Time Sync

    I'm sure this might open a can of worms, but it's a discussion that needs to happen. As virtualization technologies come into maturity, customers are more and more leaning towards virtualizing all of their infrastructure services. This includes Active...
  • A New Better Hypervisor

    If you've been following the news (and by news I mean the important stuff like technology and virtualization, not that political stuff) then you know that Microsoft just realeased and new virtualization product called Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 . I...
  • Some Easy Active Directory Scripting

    I solved a little problem for a customer the other day and I thought I'd share a little about it with you. It involves some VBScript user manipulation in Active Directory, and yes: there will be a code sample. Let's start with the problem. For whatever...
  • Remote Office Server Consolidation With Hyper-V and BitLocker

    Do you remember the days when servers for remote offices were under someone's desk or in a janitor's closet? How about in a reconfigured bathroom stall? (Yes, I've actually seen these) Are those days still now for you? The problem of securing remote branch...
  • Upgrading Your SYSVOL to DFS-R Replication

    Many papers and KB articles have been posted about the "old-style" SYSVOL replication, or FRS, dealing with the various problems and the difficulty of recovering from an FRS disaster. In light of this, the product group has finally come up with...
  • DNS Client Configuration for Windows DNS Servers

    Since we are on the topic of DNS as it relates to Windows and Active Directory, I thought I'd bring up another issue that I have regularly encountered at customer sites. This has to do with the configuration of the DNS client settings on DNS-enabled Domain...
  • DNS Referrals On Client?

    I learned something new last week. It has to do with DNS recursive vs. iterative lookups and how the client workstation handles them. First of all, for those who don't know, a recursive lookup is basically a name request that is forward on until a correct...
  • Wscript.Network

    One of my favorite objects is the Wscript.Network object. It's a very simple way to access certain environment variables in a VBScript. To invoke this object, this line must be inserted near the top of your script (certainly before you reference properties...
  • Brave New World

    Sitting in training today, the class topic was scripting. Now, most of you admins out there have done scripting in one form or another - whether it was batch or VBScript or even the new PowerShell. I've done it - I've done it a lot, but most of the people...