Tag: Microsoft

Windows WMI shocker

by on Jun.26, 2008, under General

I have been working on a ZERO touch build script for IIS on and off for a few weeks,

One of the last stepping stone for formating the “data” drive prior to setting everything up

“FORMAT H: /FS:NTFS /V:ASG” will prompt for “do you want to erase all yoiu data”, and again if the disk is in use !

So enter WMI, after only 20 mins of digging around the the internet I found some code to do a defrag, a few tweaks, and I have some VBS code that will format a DRIVE, NO questions, even if the drive is in use, and it is ONLY 7 lines

strComputer = “.”
Set objWMIService = GetObject(“winmgmts:\\” & strComputer & “\root\cimv2”)
Set colVolumes = objWMIService.ExecQuery (“Select * from Win32_Volume Where Name = ‘H:\\'”)
For Each objVolume in colVolumes
errResult = objvolume.dismount(1,0)
errResult = objVolume.format(“NTFS”, 1, 4096, “ASG”, 0)

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Microsoft and I

by on Jun.13, 2008, under General

After going the full duration, 3 interviews and an assessment day over 3months
I had “the Call” from Microsoft HR consultants this morning

Unfortunately it is a “NO Hire” that makes it the first job (ever) I have applied for that I have not got ! BUM

Got some good feedback, no surprises for me though

Good points

  • General Technical knowledge is good, particularly in web services area
  • Presentation content was well researched and has ALL of the appropriate points

Bad points

  • Technical knowledge not deep enough in some areas AD GPO, and high end security got tripped up in duel vendor firewalls, I may have even been tripped up on SQL log shipping recovery process (I need to check), I also struggled to explain some of the decision points when I have??built?? HUGE intranet platforms
  • Some of the business stuff is outside my comfort zone , which limits my ability to talk to business people
  • Presentation style. In hind sight (the wonderful tool that it is) I spent too long researching the content, and not enough time rehearsing, end result is I will TOO reliant on my notes and came across as reading a script,

Just not quite what they are looking for at in a consultant at the moment

I can’t help feeling, the presentation delivery is totally my fault , and I KNOW I can do better
It is not my normal style to be dependent on notes, and running out of time to prior to the event rehearse is totally my fault and in excusable

I will now be wondering if I would have been better missing a few points and get the delivery right

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Pondering large scale application consolidation

by on May.21, 2008, under General

Any one involved in large scale application consolidation or migration may want to consider a few points I have written up here


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WordPress on IIS7

by on Jan.14, 2008, under General

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windows 2003 file Replication Services

by on Jan.02, 2008, under Computers, Geekdom, General, Technology, Unbelievable

Over the xmas break i thought i would review my data backup process, i have a few friends with kit at their house linked to mine via long range WiFi !, so File replication between server seemed like a good plan !
Got some big disks attached to each server using??USB 2, and setup replication, Sorted,
NAH, nothing is that easy,
NTFRS has got to be the most quirky thing ever to setup, my first word of advise, is go for a pint after you configure it, and BEFORE you put any data in the replicated folder. no in fact, that is No 2. No 1 has to be test you infrastructure HARD first.
My 1st snag was a delayed write error on my USB2 disk, which corrupted the USN data for the replicated folder, and completely screwed the whole replication process, after some soul searching, crying, fretting and LOTS of cursing. I reset the entire NTFRS config for that server.
Sorted I though, no such LUCK
another Delays write error, Closer inspection revealed i had been a cheap skate when i added USB2 to my aging server, it had a ???VIA??? chip, DOH!, DOH!, DOH!, DOH!, DOH!
Quick trip to a local computer retailer?? (not PCWorld), we have a local back street guy who is VERY good,
and i kissed good bye to the I/O issues. This is cool so i thought, all my data became “pre install” and everything seemed to be fine,
This is where the pint comes in, I “moved” (big mistake) my data from the pre_install folder to the replicate folder, and everything looked good, get up the next morning, NO DATA AROOGA AROOGA CURSE CURSE CURSE (BTW this was XMAS day, i have a record of upseting the wife, but tellting her i may have lost all the photos on XMAS would surely top it all)
after a week of searching volume shadows copies and offline data on all my PCs and friends servers, I had successfully recovered ALL our data, (can i have my testicles back now please)
so 1st things first MAKE Copy or three, and try again !
This time i did go for a pint or 3 before “COPYING” in my valuable data, and all i NOW Ok
all the data if almost fully synchronise across the servers, well 150 G of photos and other random data, will take a while to sync over wifi !
Some serious Lessons learnt
1. don???t fuck with your home IT on Xmas Eve
2. don???t rush NTFRS config
3. don???t MOVE data when you have the space to copy it

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Microsoft, Tech-ed IT Forum, Barcelona, Day 5

by on Nov.17, 2007, under Computers, Geekdom, Technology

The Last day ….??My brain is close to melt down, so i only attened a few sessions today, Stuck some labs in the gaps to practice what we had been
Session 1, Delivering rich media with server 2008, shame the presenter could not deliver a rich presentation.
at least the new media extensions support MP3s and other file formats, there also seem to be a better level of integration between HTTP and MMS delivery of content, shame there is NO API for automatic creation of play lists in the current beta, so i may just have to pop to http:/ and have a whinge..
Session 2,?? Q&A with the REAL IIS team, Hard core stuff but i will try to summarise what came out of the session, following many Questions from myself and a few other

IIS is no longer supported with failover clustering, a large debate ensued over why cluster instead of load balance
The ability to initiate a worker process re-cycle still requires admin, and therefore cannot be delegated, like other feature of IIS7, but ops manager may provide a solution there
There is no feature to do logging by folder for micro sites, but the integrated pipeline architecture would make it easier to write a plug in module to achieve that,
Modules can be written in managed code (.net) as well as native code (c++) and thre is a good SDK
Apparently if you install a *.domain SSL Cert you can do host-headered SSL…. ( this was available on IIS6 and something??I??did not know)
There is a NEW feature on Worker process timeouts, at a server level, you can enable dynamic timeouts, if the server is under stress, it will adjust the idle timeout of a worker process to free up memory. Something??I picked up on though, this is a server setting, so in a shared environment where some heavy apps co-exist with lightly used apps, the session stability of the lightly used apps could suffer. Yet another excuse to go to IIS.NET and have a whinge, sorry provide constructive critisism

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Microsoft, Tech-ed IT Forum, Barcelona, Day 4

by on Nov.16, 2007, under Geekdom, Technology

Just in case anyone thinks a week at TechEd in Barcelona is a jolly, you are sadly mistaken. FIVE days of rapid fire presentations is total DATA overload, which despite the doing apparently nothing is extremely tiring.

So Day 4…..

Session 1. PHP on windows, now don???t laugh. Monday saw the release of fastCGI for windows server 2003, this is a Microsoft bolt on to run supporting CGI apps almost 15 times faster. CGI is traditionally very slow on windows due to the over head involved in creating and destroying a NEW process. CGI creates a NEW process for EVERY request. In fastCGI the process is persisted and re-used offering almost a 15 folder performance improvement. Add to that you can use forms authentication in front of the zend PHP and obtain the login credentials i may just have to try standing up a copy of WordPress on windows, Cuz I can !!!

Session 2. IIS7 on Server core, Server core is the NEW low foot print install for windows server 2008, it is not actually a SKU, but an install option you buy standard edition licence and install CORE or Full, (I wonder if they will rebrand ARCADE edition like the XBOX 360) Core will present some interesting challenges for the ???right click??? boys, as there is NO GUI, it is CMD line (hooray) or remote admin. I have never fully understood why a server needs a GUI, but my first server was novell 2, Shame that server CORE does not support managed code, so you can’t install a .net frame work, which sort of cripples a windows web server

Session 3. SQL Server indexing by Kimberly Tripp, OH MY GOD,??a serious session on SQL indexing and tools and scripts., using DMVs on SQL 2005, she demonstrated scripts she had created that woudl recomend index creates and index drops. the most enlightening statement she made (which made so much sense , but i had never though of it before) dont just look at the long runing queries, but run a trace over the a fully daily workload and look for common queries,??shaving 50% of a query which is run 5000 times day provides better overall performance gain than looking at the long runing query which only runs a few times a day.

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Microsoft, Tech-ed IT Forum, Barcelona, Day 3

by on Nov.16, 2007, under Geekdom, Technology

Well it is actually day 5, and nearly time to go home, but i have only just found the time to to write this up
Yet another day of many sessions and information over load
Session 1. Microsoft search server, wow look like that have spent some time on this one, really cool fedarated queries etc , which being based on opensearch technology (which is fundamentally RSS) you could just add a normal RSS feed to the side of your normal search. Picture you corporate search engine has you TOP news article down the side….
I wonder if it could be tweaked into a feedburner type app by republishing RSS feeds

Session 2. missed that one and gave the IIS guys in the exhibition?? hard time. Well worth it, deep dive into IIS7 and the IIS& FTP server (which is not part of server 2008, but a separate install for some reason)

Session 3. Interactive session, SQL server best practices, did not realy get much from this session, it would appear my current recommendations for SQL security in a WEB farm are pretty good

Session 4. Far too tired, for more data in take, so did a LAB on server 2008

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Microsoft, Tech-ed IT Forum, Barcelona, Day 2

by on Nov.13, 2007, under Computers, Geekdom, General, Technology

Very Busy day,??6 Session, some good some bad

session 1, IIS7 to IT Pro’s by Issac Roybal
Tonnes of really good new features, many of which directly address problem i have experianced over the past FOUR years, I wonder when i can get it on the ground

Session 2, went to a?? great hand on, self paced LAB on configuring IIS7, this actually left me with more Questons than answers

Session 3, Lunch team slot on Windows Home Server, fantastic home Pc backup and central storage box, full support for up to 10 media connect 2.0 devices, (shame i dont have any YET !!!!!!), built in web server to allow uncle jim to acces a slice of your library, yoiu even yourself from that nasty hotel 1000 miles from home! soon to be shipping with a pucker public cert on the domain with full support for UPNP and dynamic DNS too.

Session 4, MORE IIS7, but how to used the new shared config feature in a WEB farm, so many NEW features to fix problems i spent weeks writing scritps for in IIS6. (met a dutch bloke yoiu managed a web farm doing 150,000,000 hits per day, make my intranet 8,000,000 per hit look pathetic)

Session 5, SQL server storage and performance, some excitable lunatic talking about 32CPU server with 512 Gig of ram and 92 hard disk spindles just for the data

??Session 6, Windows server 2008 core, seem like a nice idea, but with .net being “managed code” it cant be deployed on CORE, making the IIS CORE version suitable for ASP (yeh right), ??HTML and PHP (i think DONT QOUTE ME)

ah well time to return to the hotel for nosh and an early night, unless i can find seom of the guys i met in redmond in april 🙂

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Microsoft, Tech-ed IT Forum, Barcelona, Day 1

by on Nov.12, 2007, under Computers, Geekdom, Technology

just left the Keynote speech at MS TechEd in Barcelona
some really great stuff on the horizon, Windows Server 2008, Hyper-V, system center etc,
However the most impressive thing for my, as a geek, was Home server, and dedcated windows based server for the home, automated back up household PCs, support from windows media devices such as XBOX 360. Full PC backup and restire etc etc

Far too many usefull feature for a home PC enironmrnt too mention here

however some what ammusing was when the speaker asked how many people are running a “server” at home over 20 % of the audiance raised their hands,
So I am NOT the only one

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