Remote Desktop Connection Manager is a great tool from Microsoft which enables you to keep track of all your RDP sessions and targets in a nice GUI. One of the things it’s lacking though, is some sort of Active Directory connection that allows you to import all your server objects directly, and not manually add/remove the serves as your infrastructure changes over time. In an attempt to bridge that gap, I’ve made a very small PowerShell script that queries your Active Directory for server objects and dumps their names into a text file that you can import into RDCMan.
Jan Egil Ring over at blog.powershell.no has created a great PowerShell script that lets you run the Microsoft Best Practices Analyzer on remote Windows Server 2008 R2 machines. In short, Invoke-BPAModeling.ps1 queries your Active Directory for any machines that run Windows Server 2008 R2, runs BPA on them (if Windows PowerShell Remoting is enabled) and emails you the report. Great tool that should be in every Windows Server admins tool-belt, and probably also set as a scheduled job to make sure you stay up to date on your servers status.
I’ve had another article posted on Petri IT Knowledgebase! The Volume Activation Management Tool (VAMT) is a free tool from Microsoft that can help administrators perform licensing and activation related tasks from a single viewpoint. VAMT is currently available in version 2.0, and supports the following products and operating systems: Read the rest of the article called License & Activation Management with Volume Activation Management Tool (VAMT) on petri.
Watchguard has recently retired their X series of firewalls and replaced them with their new lineup of XTM boxes. I took this opportunity to replace my X series firewalls with some from the new lineup, and found a neat way to migrate your existing configuration from old to new in a few very easy steps. Note: Normally I would not recommend migrating your configuration in this manner. In my mind you should always rebuild rules when replacing your firewall, as it is the perfect time to review and do some QA.
Some times things just happen, and before you know it you’re sitting in your in-laws living room talking to an Englishman and an American via Skype. And to top it of; it’s all being recorded. And to make matters even worse, we decided to try and make it a regular thing. The recordings that is, not the “in your in-laws living room” thing, that was a one-off for sure. What I’m trying to say here is that yours truly, Ed Czerwin and Chris Dearden has decided that we want to be rock-stars and start our own little virtualization related podcast.
Is 2010 over already? I guess it’s true that time flies when your having fun! 2010 has been a great year for me, both personally and professionally. I won’t bore you to death with personal issues, but as far as professionally goes you’ll just have to bare with me. 2010 was the year I really feel that I got a lot of good work done, and some of that are really significant changes for my organization which is in a way better state IT wise now than in 2009.
In a previous post, Using the WANem WAN Emulator Virtual Appliance, I’ve talked about how I’ve successfully used WANem to emulate different WAN scenarios. Since I work for a shipping company, the ability to emulate VSAT conditions are especially useful for testing and proof-of-concept scenarios. You can use WANem a couple of different ways but my setup is pretty simple but does the job perfectly. Downloading WANem #I have chose to use the WANem Virtual Appliance running in a virtual machine hosted by VMware Workstation.
Thanks to Maish Saidel-Keesing, vExpert 2010 and blogger over at Technodrone I have been made aware that VMware has used one of my posts here on vNinja in their internal presentation material. The material in question is vSphere 4.1 to 4.0 differences (page 44 and 45 in vSphere 4.1 Deep Dive - Part 1 - v6.pptx), where my post about Using USB Pass-through in vSphere 4.1 is quoted and my screenshots used.
When Rich Brambley posted “A Pirate Invented Server Virtualization” today, it reminded me of a little story from my own production environment. This story is a couple of years old, but sadly it’s still valid. A very specialized application that we run, requires a SQL Server Express instance, a proxy/licensing server and client installation with license files to work. This application isn’t very advanced, nor very resource intensive so by nature it’s prime for running in a virtualized environment.