You’re back to work and ready to learn the latest new technologies in 2013. If Windows Azure and cloud services are your thing then these 3 events that are coming up in January should definitely be added to your calendar!
LIDNUG presents Scott Guthrie's 15th Open Q&A, 15th January - Online
Scott has been coming back to LIDNUGs members each quarter for the past couple of years and it's been one of the best sessions to get answers directly from The Gu himself. In this session Scott answers questions on technical solutions, advices on implementations and draws comparisons between methodologies - all in the span of 90 minutes where his sole focus is to answer whatever question that comes in from the attendees.
The Cloud and Big Data: HDInsight on Azure, 25th January – 10am to 1.45pm - London
This session will cover an overview of Big Data and the Cloud plus how to get started with HDInsight and Azure.
Hybrid on Azure – A Pragmatic Approach to Cloud, 29th January 12pm till 5pm - Manchester
Cloud solutions are often presented as an all-or-nothing deal, in reality a move to the cloud is very rarely that straightforward and a much more pragmatic approach has to be taken. That is where Hybrid deployments really come into their own, the Windows Azure platform has been built with this in mind and gives infrastructure and software architects an all-encompassing toolkit. Join us in Manchester on January 29th to hear about how you can deploy hybrid cloud solutions across a wide range of common business applications and architectures and discover the benefits not only in terms of performance but also in terms of cost.
If you’ve not yet tried out Windows Azure get your free 90 day trial here:
I’m currently spending some time build a test lab with System Center 2012 Configuration Manager Service Pack 1 (CM12 or SCCM 2012 if you like to shorten it) and during a build and came across a couple of errors (0x80070002 and during my first build and capture task sequence. I thought I’d just quickly document the error codes and fixes.
This one is due to the credentials being used to access the DP being incorrect – I’d got the password wrong!
To resolve this go to Administration, select Site Configuration > Sites and select the site you’re deploying from. Right click the site and select Configure Site Components > Software Distribution. Select the Network Access Account tab and click the Set… button to specify the account used for network access. Select New Account and correct the details for your network access account. Don't forget to verify the connection.
This error was much harder to find, but I spotted a post that referred to problems capturing a VM, it then occurred to me that you need a minimum of 1024mb of RAM on the machine you’re capturing. For me this was a quick dive into Hyper-V settings and upping the minimum ram to 1024 mb from 512mb. You’ll need a minimum of 1024 even if you have Dynamic Memory enabled for the machine as WinPE doesn’t do Dynamic Memory.
Storage in Windows Server 2012 is more than firing up a few file shares and setting up security on them. With SMB3 file shares can now be used to host high performance application data like running hyper-V virtual machines and SQL Server databases. Speed is one thing but reliability is what really matters and in the server world that means high availability and in Server 2012 you can now create a file server role in a cluster. The nodes (up to 8 for this role) need to see some sort of shared storage but not necessarily a SAN. As you can see in this short screencast it’s a simple exercise and the share can be configured for a variety of uses including NFS.
This role also uses the clustered shared volume technology introduced in Windows Server 2008 R2 for live migrations in Hyper-V. Actually you must use CSV if you are using the share for application data as this hands off the read access to another node in a cluster fast enough to enable continuous availability.
In my demo I did everything in VMs except having an iscsi target on my host, and will this is great to show it working and to evaluate the technology. However this really gets interesting if you create something called a collapsed cluster. The hardware vendors are working on a cluster in a box where several computers in a commodity racked box are cross wired to SAS/JBOD disks. You could then create a clustered file share on this and put your virtual machines into the same cluster and then they too would be highly available as there would be no single point of failure in this box, and you wouldn’t need a SAN to do it. I’ll show you how this works in a separate video.
Last time I posted about how you can use Windows Azure to setup a test lab for yourself without the need to spend anything or have any hardware lying around to play with. In this video I show you how to take that one step further and build your first Domain Controller in your first forest, which is generally an essential step in any test lab. The steps in this video are exactly the same if you want to do this same thing with your own hardware on-prem by the way.
If you do want to do this on-prem you’ll need to download the Windows Server 2012 Evaluation.
If you’re looking for an easy way to start evaluating Windows Server 2012 this couldn’t really be any easier, quicker, cheaper or faster (if you have 30 mins you can do this). Windows Azure’s IaaS features make it is as simple as it could possibly be to setup a test lab without the use of any hardware but with the full features of the OS and the platform. It’s also a really good way to start getting a handle on Windows Azure’s IaaS features and to start understanding how they come together.
Over the festive period I had some time to play with some new features of some of our technology and to make some videos, in this first video I’ll take you through the simple signup process for Windows Azure. It’s free for 90 days and has a £0 spending limit set so you won’t get charged (unless you remove that limit). Next we’ll setup a private network on Windows Azure to connect our virtual machines, then we’ll use PowerShell to connect to Azure and provision our first VM. Finally in my next post I’ll show you how to setup your first Active Directory Domain Controller in your first AD Forest in Windows Server 2012.
You won’t need much in the way of resources for this, you’ll just need: