Archive for Training

Training: 44CO175 – SharePoint 2010 Administrator Bootcamp

44CO175 – SharePoint 2010 Administrator Bootcamp (BPIO)

Step-by-step understanding is key to successfully implementing and deploying SharePoint 2010. This 15-module course will guide you through each critical stage, giving you exactly the skills you need to leverage full value from the latest SharePoint technology.

Module 0 – Getting Ready for a SharePoint 2010 Implementation: Why Governance and Business Requirements are Essential for a Successful Implementation.
Module 1 – Understanding the Architecture of SharePoint Server 2010
Module 2 – Installing SharePoint Server 2010.
Module 3 – Administrating and Configuring Farm Settings in SharePoint Server 2010
Module 4 – Understanding and Administrating Web applications
Module 5 – Managing Web Applications
Module 6 – Introduction to Site Collections
Module 7 – Creating Site Collections
Module 8 – Managing Site Collections
Module 9 – Working with SharePoint Server 2010 Portals
Module 10 – Governance and Information Assurance
Module 11 – Enterprise Content Types & Managed Metadata
Module 12 – Managing Documents and Records
Module 13 – Workflow
Module 14 – Implementing and Managing Search
Module 15 – People & Social Networking
Module 16 – Disaster Recovery

A handful of notes from the week..

Installation Preparation for Service & Install Accounts 

The SharePoint Installation Account

While I’ve become used to installing applications on servers with either the local or domain admin account, SharePoint 2010 really really really needs to have its own account created for the installation process. If you don’t you’ll have to correct the various service and app pool accounts later and that’s a pain.

Key points about the account used to install with –

  • It will become the application pool account used in IIS for the Central Admin
  • If you do plan to let SharePoint create your databases (content DBs’ etc…) this account needs rights to the SQL database to create DB’s (DBCreator and DBAdmin)
  • If DB’s are already created then it only needs DBAdmin
  • It only needs Local Admin permissions on the installation machine
  • Not to be used in day-to-day admin
  • Imagine this account to be “enterprise admin” of SharePoint.
  • It should never be used again after the initial install, obviously that doesn’t mean disable or delete it.

Example User Account – spinstall

The Farm Admin Account

 The farm admin account is an account that should be used by as few people as possible.

  • It either needs to be a local admin on the SharePoint front end or create a new supper user or login as spinstall(logging in as spinstall is not recommended)
  • The farm admin account change services running on the machine hence the need for local admin rights, farm admin right in SharePoint central admin isn’t enough

Example User Account – spfarmadmin

During the SharePoint 2010 install

 Make sure you move index location during install off from the C:\…\14\data location

 This index file is a flat file used in search and can grow very large in next to no time.

After the install – the Configuration Wizard

Do not use it, it doesn’t follow best practice.

 Performance Tip for SharePoint databases 

Turn off Auto Growth

While it’s been mentioned a thousand times and shouldn’t need to be mentioned…

To prevent it happening in existing installations for any new databases:

SQL Management  Studio > Database > Model. Under the file groups section  change the properties for .mdf to grow by 50MB at a time

Fixing it for existing databases:

Open the properties of each database and under the file groups section, change the properties for .mdf to grow by 50MB at a time

Note: Why 50MB? Because it’s just right for SharePoint since it aligns with the default maximum upload file size.

Registering Managed Service Accounts for SharePoint 2010

  • Best practice is to add them here first then start to use them to run services
  • All are generally fine  as just domain user accounts without elevated privileges

Application Pool Accounts in IIS for SharePoint 2010

 Never change the app pool account from inside IIS as the config DB will not know about the change, web apps will not know about the change and new servers added to the farm will not know which account to use.

One of the few things you can and do need to configure in IIS is SSL certificates and also needs to be done on each and every web front end.


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Training – SQL Server MasterClass (Kim Tripp & Paul Randal –

As posted many times before, continous professional development through training and education is absolutely core of our IT consulting business, The Full Circle (

Today is a good day for that mantra as we are attending an excellent training seminar by SQL MVP’s and founders of – SQL Server MasterClass

My scribbles from the day.. and the formal agenda, speaker bio’s, etc. at the end

Bridging the gap between Development & Production..

DBA’s & Developers not communicating and the reluctant/involentary DBA..

The dilema of development, change control, production scheduling, and customer demands for new features

4 features that break an Enterprise to Standard restore – Partitioning, data compression, …, …

How Design Affects Production
Design considerations such as capacity planning up front to scale databases correctly, try to avoid autogrowth! & Log file fragmentation (LVF’s etc.)

Use of correct data types e.g. Use of bigint for small numbers, datetime when you only really need date, etc. – why use 16-bytes when you can use 4!

Disk maybe cheap, but memory overhead across a system is not.

Indexing – design them, not ad-hoc!

Resouce Governer – limit ad-hoc SQL query users

Naming conventions – obvious in any system (or should be!), makes long term management easier

Design choices affecting maintenance e.g. Fixed vs. Variable length impacting the ability to perform online index rebuilds or not!

Even some some MS apps break this such as SharePoint!

Nested Transactions – avoid!  ..they are evil!  (nested begins, only free resource at end of first transaction)

Instant File Initialisation (IFI) – restores create the file the full with zeros unless IFI is enabled.

Parameterization – trying to get your plan in cache, optimize at dB level.

Phyical dB layout – as dB’s become larger partioning into multiple filegroups is necessary – what’s a large dB? over 100GB you need to consider, TB absolutely!

Measuring your restores to check against your SLA’s – restores take longer than backup, ballpark 25% more, you can break your maintenance window (& SLA’s) by underestimating the restore time.

Primary Key Choice – obvious but not always followed.

Indexing Strategies – difficult!

Database Maintenance – lack of causes problems!

Real Testing!!! – developers need access to similar environment to live otherwise

Myth Buster – top 10 myths debunked, taken from Paul’s Myth a day posts in April at

e.g. Failover Clustering is best HA for SQL..? It depends!
Read more at “Proven SQL Server Architectures for High Availability and Disaster Recovery –”

Tempdb or transaction log should be x% of the size of the largest dB – it depends! If you had a 10TB dB would you have 25% allocated for the log? e.g. 2.5TB wasted on logs.. NO!

use of single user mode, and admin connections.. the :m. and :a. startup switches

DR handbook should be written  by the most experienced member of the team, but tested by the most junior – who’d going to be holding the pager when the system goes bang at 02:00 on a Sunday…?  likely not the architect!

GUIDs: Use, Abuse, and How To Move Forward
Dilema of GUIDs everywere, great for uniqueness, not so great if used for non-clustered indexes and used as a primary key (due to it’s uniqueness) – back to using the correct data types, why use a 64-byte key when a 4-byte key will suffice – for a 10,000 row table this can mean an internal system index of 400Mb, a 64-byte key will be nearer 5GB – just for the system!

Massive performance and storage gains to be had from correct use of GUIDs – see Kimberly’s blog post on this for more info at

The Top-Ten List…

10) Data File Management – you can have up to 32768 files per database, and a minimum of two being the MDF & LDF, but just because you can doesn’t mean you should!  However, careful placement of physical files on different storage types can add huge value to your SQL environment..

9) Transaction Log file management – only one log file is necessary, try and isolate from the data files to avoid disk head contention, use appropriate RAID (not RAID 5 as has high overheads for write & logs are write intensive)

8) Tempdb – tempdb is a special case as it is very susceptible to contention issues because only 1 per instance and 1 tempdb file per processor core, you can now create multiple files to spread the contention. KB328551 maybe suitable in your environment.
Guideline for number of tempdb files, .25-.5 the number of cores.

7) Indexing Best Practice – dont’t go crazy with indexes, as with data files, just because you can.. doesn’t mean you should!  if anything try to reduce your indexes!  Good workload analysis to determine characteristics and query priority as over-indexing can be worse than under indexing.  Poorly maintained indexes can be more trouble in the long term – be sure to automate index maintenance.  A narrow index has very few issues, a wide one has the potential for many more!

6) Statistics

5) Index Fragmentation – Fragmentation Defined.. two broad types: internal (wasted space on data/indexes aka physical defragmentation) & logical (..)
Main causes.. GUID as high-order key, updates to variable length columns, badly configured FILLFACTOR, wide schemas that only fit a small number of rows per page
Keys to success.. how to read the data
How to correct.. create index with drop_existing, rebuild the index, defrag the index
Most folks rebuild or reorganise but their are tradeoffs.. how much disk space have you got? 😉 


3) I/O errors – 823/824 errors have already been retried 4 times before you find out that the I/O subsystem has transient problems.  monitor for error 825 – read errors

2) DBCC CHECKDB – see the blog post
How often should you run CHECKDB – at least once per week – yikes!, how long will it take? – it depends!   but if it starts to take longer it normally means a problem.

1) Recovering Using Backups – best way to avoid data loss but not necessarily the best way to avoid downtime so consider other mechanisms to full backups such as log shipping, mirroring, etc.  Recommend at least Full & Log backups but frequently e.g. full weekly, logs as often as every 5 minutes… however Differentials are better – redundancy in the backups

Q&A – I asked about placement of tempdb in a failover cluster and if there is a downside to putting it on non-cluster shared storage e.g. a local SSD drive or RAMdisk – no, this is fine as long as the same drive letter is available on each node as the tempdb is flushed and recreated everytime SQL starts anyway & got yet another geek polo shirt – my wife will love that… 😉

more info at.. – over 50hrs of free online training resources

Formal Event notes, background, agenda, speaker bio’s, etc.
This special one-day event will focus on some of the top issues companies face when implementing and maintaining a SQL Server-based solution. Very often there is no dedicated DBA and so the IT managers struggle to keep the data tier performing well and the data available. This can be especially troublesome when the development team is unaware of how application design choices affect database performance.

During the day Kimberly and Paul will:
Debunk many of the ingrained misconceptions around SQL Server’s behaviour
Show you disaster recovery techniques critical to preserving your company’s life-blood – the data
Explain how a common application design pattern can wreak havoc in the database
Walk through the top-10 points to follow around operations and maintenance for a wellperforming and available data tier

KEYNOTE: Bridging the Gap Between Development and Production
Applications are commonly developed with little regard for how design choices will affect performance in production. This is often because developers don’t realize the implications of their design on how SQL Server will be able to handle a high workload (e.g. blocking, fragmentation) and/or because there’s no full-time trained DBA that can recognize production problems and help educate developers. The keynote sets the stage for the rest of the day. Discussing some of the issues that can arise, explaining how some can be avoided and highlighting some of the features in SQL 2008 that can help developers and DBAs make better use of SQL Server, and troubleshoot when things go wrong.

SESSION ONE: SQL Server Mythbusters
It’s amazing how many myths and misconceptions have sprung up and persisted over the years about SQL Server – after many years helping people out on forums, newsgroups, and customer engagements, Paul and Kimberly have heard it all. Are there really non-logged operations? Can interrupting shrinks or rebuilds cause corruption?
Can you override the server’s MAXDOP setting? Will the server always do a table-scan to get a row count? Many myths lead to poor design choices and inappropriate maintenance practices so these are just a few of many, many myths that Paul and Kimberly will debunk in this fast-paced session on how SQL Server operates and should be managed and maintained.

SESSION TWO: Database Recovery Techniques Demo-Fest
Even if a company has a disaster recovery strategy in place, they need to practice to make sure that the plan will work when a disaster does strike. In this fast-paced demo session Paul and Kimberly will repeatedly do nasty things to databases and then show how they are recovered – demonstrating many techniques that can be used in production for disaster recovery. Not for the faint-hearted!

SESSION THREE: GUIDs: Use, Abuse, and How To Move Forward
Since the addition of the GUID (Microsoft’s implementation of the UUID), my life as a consultant and “tuner” has been busy. I’ve seen databases designed with GUID keys run fairly well with small workloads but completely fall over and fail because they just cannot scale. And, I know why GUIDs are chosen – it simplifies the handling of parent/child rows in your batches so you can reduce round-trips or avoid dealing with identity values. And, yes, sometimes it’s even for distributed databases and/or security that GUIDs are chosen. I’m not entirely against ever using a GUID but overusing and abusing GUIDs just has to be stopped! Please, please, please let me give you better solutions and explanations on how to deal with your parent/child rows, round-trips and clustering keys!

SESSION 4: Essential Database Maintenance
In this session, Paul and Kimberly will run you through their top-ten database maintenance recommendations, with a lot of tips and tricks along the way. These are distilled from almost 30 years combined experience working with SQL Server customers and are geared towards making your databases more performant, more available, and more easily managed (to save you time!). Everything in this session will be practical and applicable to a wide variety of
databases. Topics covered include: backups, shrinks, fragmentation, statistics, and much more! Focus will be on 2005 but we’ll explain some of the key differences for 2000 and 2008 as well.

Paul and Kimberly are a husband-and-wife team who own and run, a world-renowned SQL Server consulting and training company.
They are both SQL Server MVPs and Microsoft Regional Directors, with over 30 years of combined experience on SQL Server. Paul worked on the SQL Server team for nine years in development and management roles, writing many of the DBCC commands, and ultimately with responsibility for core Storage Engine for SQL Server 2008. Paul writes extensively on his blog
( and for TechNet Magazine, for which he is also a Contributing
Editor. Kimberly worked on the SQL Server team in the early 1990s as a tester and writer before leaving to found SQLskills and embrace her passion for teaching and consulting. Kimberly has been a staple at worldwide conferences since she first presented at TechEd in 1996, and she blogs at They have written Microsoft whitepapers and books for SQL Server 2000, 2005 and 2008, and are regular, top-rated
presenters worldwide on database maintenance, high availability, disaster recovery, performance tuning, and SQL Server internals. Together they teach the SQL MCM certification and throughout Microsoft.
In their spare time, they like to find frogfish in remote corners of the world.

“To call them good trainers is an epic understatement. They know how to deliver
technical material in ways that illustrate it well. I had to stop Paul at one point and
ask him how long it took to build a particular slide because the animations were so
good at conveying a hard-to-describe process.”
“These are not beginner presenters, and they put an extreme amount of
preparation and attention to detail into everything that they do. Completely,
utterly professional.”
“When it comes to the instructors themselves, Kimberly and Paul simply have no
equal. Not only are they both ultimate authorities, but they have endless
enthusiasm about the material, and spot on delivery. If either ever got tired they
never showed it, even after going all day and all week. We witnessed countless
demos over the course of the week, some extremely involved, multi-step
processes, and I can’t recall one that didn’t go the way it was supposed to.”
“You might think that with this extreme level of skill comes extreme levels of
egotism and lack of patience. Nothing could be further from the truth. … They
simply know how to teach, and are approachable, humble, and patient.”
“The experience Paul and Kimberly have had with real live customers yields a lot
more information and things to watch out for than you’d ever get from
documentation alone.”
“Kimberly, I just wanted to send you an email to let you know how awesome you
are! I have applied some of your indexing strategies to our website’s homegrown
CMS and we are experiencing a significant performance increase. WOW….amazing
tips delivered in an exciting way! Thanks again”
Kimberley L. Tripp
Paul S.Randal

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Training – Updating Your Technology Knowledge of Microsoft Windows XP to Windows 7


Activity description: 44CO135 – Updating Your Technology Knowledge of Microsoft Windows XP to Windows 7 (M6291)


This two-day instructor-led course provides students with the knowledge and skills to work with the new technologies in Windows Vista and Windows 7. This course is intended for individuals who already have experience with Windows XP to upgrade their skills to Windows 7.


After completing this course, students will be able to:

•Manage the desktop settings that personalize the computing experience.
•Describe how Windows 7 Beta Search enhancements improve productivity.
•Implement Search Federation to search remote data sources within the enterprise infrastructure.
•Describe the new Group Policy Preferences and Administrative Templates that are available to IT professionals who manage Group Policy Objects.
•Describe how IT professionals use the Group Policy Management Console to create scripts that manage Group Policy Objects.
•Identify and use the improvements made to the latest version of PowerShell.
•Describe how DirectAccess enables IT professionals to remotely manage and update user PCs.
•Describe the platform and network requirements necessary to implement DirectAccess.
•Describe the VPN reconnection features and the platform and network requirements.
•Illustrate how to use Group Policy to prevent specific types of files from being synchronized to the server.
•Describe how BranchCache improves user productivity in branch offices by caching content from remote file and Web servers in branch locations.
•Administer new User Account Control security settings to improve the end-user computing experience.
•Describe how AppLocker enables IT Professionals to specify the programs that are allowed to run on user desktops.
•Describe how Windows 7 Beta improves upon the firewall policy by allowing IT professionals to identify multiple active firewall profiles.
•Describe new Windows 7 Beta features as they relate to Windows Deployment Services and virtualization.
•Explain how the Problem Steps Recorder can be used to reproduce and record experiences with an application failure.
•Summarize key components of the Windows Troubleshooting Platform and run the troubleshooting wizard from the Start menu for a specific problem.
•Identify how unified tracing provides IT professionals with a single tool for troubleshooting issues in the Windows 7 Beta networking stack.
•Describe how Windows Management Instrumentation provides IT professionals with programmatic access to reliability data, enabling them to check stability status and review recent events remotely.
•Describe how to use the Device Manager and Devices and Printers to manage devices

Top tips & resources picked up during the course…

– Windows 7 is the last O/S from Microsoft available in a 32-bit sku, the reason still available on x86/32-bit is due to global economic conditions, to extend the life of older hardware (and not limiting the deployment of 7).

– Group Policy Preferences brought in with Server 2008 and allows user changes after the policy has been deployed.
Group Policy Audit Tool – auditpol.exe
AD DS Auditing Step-by-Step Guide –

– Deployment accelerators at (‘Quickly access resources designed to ease the deployment and management of your Windows client infrastructure’), also check Stephen Rose at

– DirectAccess & SBS… wait for SBS 2008 R2

– Windows 7 & Windows Server 2008 R2 is DoD Suite B compliant
Use BitLocker and BitLocker to go on all your mobile devices

– Google hacking… Andy showed us the interesting stuff that can be done with Google Hacking e.g. goto and type in the search bar site:mil filetype:pdf “top secret”
also the use of the ‘similar’ button to get around site logon

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Training – Updating Your Windows Server 2008 Technology Specialist Skills to R2

This week I have another couple of days out of the office (or our clients office) for yet more Microsoft Partner training – 2 days of updating your Technology Specialist skills Windows Server 2008 R2.

Updating Your Windows Server 2008 Technology Specialist Skills to R2

This course is so hot off the press that the materials were only delivered last Thursday… e.g. buggy labs – fun to fix! ;-), no course DVD cut as yet, and a speaker that doesn’t know the materials, and fortunately doesn’t need too… as it’s being delivered by  Andy Mallone ( &

Andy is an MVP in Windows Server, has been an MCT for 15 years (had a 4-digit MCP id), is a speaker at various events inc. just back from TechEd delivering , and will be in Redmond in 2 months time as an external member of the Windows 8 product team… likely to be the first x64 only client OS from Microsoft.

Global Knowledge use the strap line ‘Experts teaching Experts’ – they have nailed it on this one. 🙂

Anyway, on to the course (Top tips as usual at the end..):

Activity name: 44CO149 – Updating Your Windows Server 2008 Technology Specialist Skills to R2

Facility: Global Knowledge, London, 83 Baker Street, W1U 6AG

Who: Andy Mallone (
MVP Windows Server, MCT for 15 years, speaker at various events inc. just back from TechEd, and will be in Redmond in 2 months time as an external member of the Windows 8 product team!

Andy Malone has a deep and broad understanding so far beyond the subject (and that your average instructor) that allowed him to easily fill in the gaps in the somewhat lacking and already outdated course materials.  The result was ‘quality training’ that has made a real difference to our long term understanding and ability to work with Windows 7 and the supporting technologies.

Activity Link (URL):

Activity description: 44CO149 – Updating Your Windows Server 2008 Technology Specialist Skills to R2


This two day intensive course is aimed at fast tracking Windows Server Technical Specialists and IT professionals onto the new technology of Windows Server 2008 R2. This course will also provide enough knowledge and skills for Partners to pass the new WS08R2 exam, due out later this year.


Students who attend this 2-day ILT should have the following prerequisite knowledge:
• Possess core Windows Server 2008 Technology Specialist skills.

• Familiarity and experience with batch scripting or another scripting language.

• Experience with Windows deployment technologies and implementation.

• Experience with Windows networking technologies and implementation.

• Experience with Active Directory technologies and implementation.

• Experience with Windows Server 2008 server virtualization technologies and implementation.

• Experience with Windows Server 2008 Web application server technologies and implementation.


Students who attend this 2-day ILT should have the following prerequisite knowledge:
• Possess core Windows Server 2008 Technology Specialist skills.

• Familiarity and experience with batch scripting or another scripting language.

• Experience with Windows deployment technologies and implementation.

• Experience with Windows networking technologies and implementation.

• Experience with Active Directory technologies and implementation.

• Experience with Windows Server 2008 server virtualization technologies and implementation.

• Experience with Windows Server 2008 Web application server technologies and implementation.

Top tips & links picked up during the course…

– Using VHD’s created in disk management for storage whatever you need, whereever you need it, appearing as local storage (disk, volume, etc.) – helping towards the goal of ‘elastic enterprise solutions’ & cloud computing

Demo on how to use a VHD to support native OS boot for Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2 – more at Keith Combes excellent blahg at

– AD Administration Center… the shape of AD admin to come..?
(an R2 RSAT feature..)

– Technologies you need to embrace to succeed in this industry in the next few years… Virtualisation, Cloud, IPv6

– Encryption types, data at rest (e.g. encrypting on the disk with bitlocker) vs. data in transit (e.g. encryption on the network with IPsec)

– MSAT (Microsoft Security Assessment Toolkit) – is gold!

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Training – Implementing and Administering Windows Small Business Server 2008

This week is another out of the office on Microsoft partner training – 4 days of SBS 2008…

Course code: 44CO120 – M6445 – Implementing and Administering Windows Small Business Server 2008

Where: QA Tabernacle Street, London, EC2A 4DT

Who: Mark Cresswell (

44CO120 – M6445 – Implementing and Administering Windows Small Business Server 2008

This four-day instructor-led course provides students with the knowledge and skills to plan, implement, and manage Windows Small Business Server 2008
This course is intended for technology consultants, system integrators, and in-house technology staff that serve small and medium- sized businesses

In addition to their professional experience, students who attend this training should have technical knowledge and skills equivalent to the following courses:
  Course 6420: Fundamentals of a Windows Sever 2008 Network and Applications Infrastructure
  Course 6424: Fundamentals of Windows Server 2008 Active Directory
  Course 5115: Installing and Configuring the Windows Vista Operating
  Course 5116: Configuring Windows Vista Mobile Computing and Applications

Delegates will learn how to Install Microsoft Windows Small Business Server 2008.
Migrate to Microsoft Windows Small Business Server 2008.
Configure Windows Small Business Server 2008 using the Windows Small Business Server 2008 Console.
Manage users and groups in Windows Small Business Server 2008.
Manage messaging and collaboration in Windows Small Business Server 2008.
Manage and monitor Windows Small Business Server 2008.
Secure a Windows Small Business Server 2008 network.
Expand a Windows Small Business Server 2008 network

Top tips & links picked up during the course…

Microsoft SBS docs –

Known Post Installation Event Errors from SBS 2008 –

Microsoft blog guide to WSS3/MOSS alternate access mappings –

more tiny urls..  /sbs-rsg,  /sbs-docs, /sbs-grp

Microsoft OEM site –

Top 100 public SharePoint sites –

Free Block List provider –
This is gold!  add to your Block List Providers and switch on connection filtering.
One caveat to note, every time an email is processed by your server it performs a lookup to – if they receive too many lookups they will suggest that you take up their paid service.  The threshold for this is huge (100,000 SMTP connections per day or 300,000 lookups), and you must not be using it commercially i.e. providing a managed service incorporating their service.

Why disable or rename the Administrator account… because it has a well-known SID! (… -500).

Use child domains for all external domain records just like the default so to get round duplicate maintainence of internal and external resources (and prevent confusion when vpn’d in!)

SBS default groups have an attribute that mark them as created by the SBS setup process or management console.. so be mindful if creating outside of the console!
Fool it by opening AD Users & Computers, open the attribute editor for the group and edit the msSBSCreatedState to ‘Created’

Roaming profiles – SBS has not been designed to support roaming profiles and Microsoft will not support issues with them (in this context), e.g. production of a SBS specific hotfix to address an issue.
Advised not to use roaming profiles bar controlled environments such as standard build, lack of local admins, quotas, group policy lockdown, etc.

Client migration – above half a dozen client machines consider using the User State Migration Toolkit (USMT) to script the process,  ROI should be worthwhile in configuration time vs time saved at the desktop.

Segway! – the BBC iPlayer program is a P2P service that shares out content, based on Ch4 4oD package – remove it!

Need to inject drivers into WinRE or WinPE boot environments..?  don’t be scared!  use drvload and PEImage, more on TechNet Edge –

SSL certs for SBS – don’t buy single certs unless you have to.   Host headers and ssl is tricky, has to be a ucc cert or wildcard cert to support.
Default cert purchase from now on will be a wildcard cert, unless a bloody good reason (or lots of small ones… read $’s) not to!

Security cost triangle – you can have any two but not all 3!
low cost, usability, security

Relability and Performance monitor – what a gem!

migration to SBS2008..

My recommendation is to start with Philip Elder’s great posts at
SBS 2008 deployment checklist –
SBS2003 to 2008 migration guide –

Exchange & Circular Logging…
A potential for lots of debate, but I’d agree with Mark that whilst migrating mailboxes, if circluar logging is not enabled, enable it otherwise run the risk of filling up disks with log files!

Disable circular logging post event and let the Exchange aware backups submit the log clear down.  However, if the store data and logs are on the same spindle you may as well leave circular logging on as you get little or no recovery benefits.

How to remove the last legacy Exchange server from an organisation – (

Common mistakes when upgrading Exchange 2000/2003 to 2007 –

ipconfig /displaydns

Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack
Advanced Group Policy Management –
Asset Inventory Service –
Microsoft Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset (DaRT)
System Center Desktop Error Monitoring (DEM)
Microsoft Asset Inventory Service (AIS)

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Training – Accelerated Implementing & Managing Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V and SCVMM

44CO134 – Server Virtualisation Competency Fast Track: Implementing and Managing Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V and SCVMM

This course combines the syllabus of Microsoft courses 6422 and 6331 providing delegates with the knowledge to take Exams 70-652 and 70-403 which can lead to the new Server Virtualisation Competency.

This combined four day course teaches students how to implement and manage Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V. It also teaches students how to manage Hyper-V with System Center Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) and with PowerShell. The course then goes on to teach students how to implement a Microsoft System Center Virtual Machine Manager V2 solution in an organization. The course also discusses how to install, configure, and deploy VMM.

Windows Server 2000/2003 System Administration

Basic understanding of System Center Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) (optional)

Server Virtualization using Virtual Server 2005, Virtual PC, or VMWare

Operating knowledge of System Center Operations Manager 2007

Delegates will learn how to
Install and configure Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V.
Understand Hyper-V Virtual Networking.
Understand the types of Virtual Hard Drives and their benefits.
Create and manage Virtual Machines on the Hyper-V server.
Understand how to configure the Hyper-V server to ensure high availability.
Monitor the performance of the Hyper-V server.
Understand how to use existing virtual machines in the Hyper-V server.
Understand the issues with migrating existing Virtual Machines to Hyper-V.
Understand how System Center Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) can be used to manage Hyper-V servers throughout the enterprise.
Use PowerShell to manage the Hyper-V server and the virtual machines hosted on the Hyper-V server.
Implement a disaster recovery plan for Virtual Machines on Hyper-V.
Identify installation prerequisites and requirements for VMM, select secure settings for VMM installations; and install VMM management packs.
Describe prerequisites for installing the Administrator Console; configure the Windows Firewall for the VMM Administrator Console; and configure managed hosts.
Describe prerequisites for the VMM Self-Service Portal; configure IIS to support the Self-Service Portal; and install the Self-Service Portal.
Configure host server hardware to support VMs.
Add VM hosts to VMM; install the VMM agent; add VMWare servers to VMM; and create filters.
Configure delegated administration; set host or group permissions; and configure VMM settings to support a test environment.
Configure access to the VMM Self-Service Portal; configure quotas on the VMM Self-Service Portal; and self-provision VMs using the VMM Self-Service Portal.
Add a VMM library including library shares and library servers and manage the contents of VMM library shares.
Deploy VMs using multiple methods; and use Intelligent Placement to deploy VMs.
Identify considerations for SAN VM migrations; perform a Quick Migration; and use Intelligent Placement to move a VM.
Convert a physical computer to a VM.
Convert other VM formats to Hyper-V VMs using VMM.
Describe considerations for configuring host clustering and describe procedures for configuring host clustering.
Describe considerations for configuring guest clustering and describe procedures for configuring guest clustering.
Identify scenarios where VMM Checkpoints may be used to meet operational requirements and create a VM Checkpoint.
Describe considerations for patch management using System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) and deploy patches using WSUS.
Describe and configure SCOM reporting.
Use SCOM to select potential virtualization targets based on workload and performance characteristics.
Describe considerations for monitoring host server utilization; measure and analyze host server utilization; and identify important considerations in growth planning.
Monitor and manage the progress of VMM jobs.
Locate failed jobs and recover failed jobs.

Course outline
Module 1: Introduction to Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V
This module introduces the concepts related to and the history of server virtualization. Through this module, the student will understand the business need for virtualization and how virtualization fits into their existing environment. Selecting the required hardware and basic installation and configuration are also covered.
Introducing Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V
Hyper-V Requirements
Installing the Hyper-V Server Role
Configure Hyper-V to Be Highly Available
Lab : Install Hyper-V and Perform Initial Configuration (Install Hyper-V; Explore the Hyper-V Management Console)
Module 2: Configure Hyper-V Settings and Virtual Networks
This module provides information on the configuration options available on the Hyper-V server and the Hyper-V Virtual Networks.
Configuring Hyper-V Options
Configuring the Virtual Network
Lab : Configuring Hyper-V and Virtual Networks (Configure Hyper-V Server Settings; Configure Hyper-V Virtual Networks)
Module 3: Hyper-V Remote Administration
This module explores the requirements for remote management of the Hyper-V Server and the tools available for remote management.
Configuring Hyper-V Remote Administration
Connecting to Hyper-V Remotely
Lab : Accessing and Managing Hyper-V Remotely (Configure the Windows Firewall; Install the Hyper-V Manager on Windows Vista; Connect to the Hyper-V Server Remotely)
Module 4: Creation of Virtual Hard Drives and Virtual Machines
This module explores the creation of the Hyper-V Virtual Machines and their associated Virtual Hard Drives. The options available for the Virtual Machines and the types of Virtual Hard Drives will be covered. This module also covers the importance of Hyper-V Integration Services and Hypervisor.
Creating Virtual Hard Drives
Creating Virtual Machines
Lab : Creating Virtual Hard Drives and Virtual Machines (Creating New Virtual Hard Disks; Creating New Virtual Machines)
Module 5: Virtual Machine Settings, Snapshots, and High Availability
This module explores the settings available on each Virtual Machines hosted on the Hyper-V server and how to use and manage Virtual Machine snapshots. The module will also cover configuring Hyper-V for high availability and performance monitoring on the Hyper-V server.
Managing Virtual Machine Settings
Using Virtual Machine Snapshots
Configuring Hyper-V for High Availability
Monitoring Hyper-V Performance
Lab : Managing Virtual Machine Settings (Configure Virtual Machine Settings; Monitor Hyper-V Performance)
Module 6: Migration of Virtual Machines to Hyper-V
This module provides instruction on how to migrate virtual machines hosted on earlier virtualization technologies to the Hyper-V server.
Migrating Legacy Virtual Machines
Understanding the Impact of Migrated VMs
Lab : Migrating Legacy Virtual Machines to Hyper-V (Migrate Existing Virtual Machines to Hyper-V; Troubleshoot Issues on the Migrated VMs)
Module 1: Installing System Center Virtual Machine Manager
Module 1 describes the installation prerequisites for VMM and describes the procedure for installing VMM. In addition, Module 1 describes the procedure to install the VMM Administrator Console and the VMM Self-Service Portal.
Installing System Center Virtual Machine Manager Server Components
Installing the VMM Administrator Console
Installing the VMM Self-Service Portal
Lab : Installing System Center Virtual Machine Manager (Installing VMM Server; Installing the VMM Administrator Console; Installing the VMM Self-Service Portal and Configuring a DNS Record)
Module 2: Configuring VM Hardware, Hosts, and User Roles
Module 2 describes host server hardware configuration considerations. In addition, Module 2 describes general host server configuration procedures including security configuration procedures.
Adding Hosts to VMM
Configuring Hardware
Configuring VMM Settings
Managing VMM Security
Lab : Configuring VM Hardware, Hosts, and User Roles (Configuring Hosts; Configuring VM Hardware; Configuring User Roles)
Module 3: Configuring the VMM Self-Service Portal and Library
Module 3 describes considerations and procedures for configuring the VMM Self-Service Portal and Library. This includes enabling user- or group-level access to the Self-Service Portal, configuring quotas, and using the Self-Service Portal to self-provision VMs. In addition, Module 3 describes procedures for maintaining VMM library servers and shares and the contents of library shares.
Configuring the VMM Self-Service Portal
Maintaining a VMM Library
Managing Library Files
Lab : Configuring the VMM Self-Service Portal and Library (Configuring the VMM Self-Service Portal; Maintaining a VMM Library)
Module 4: Deploying and Managing VMs
Module 4 describes VM deployment and management tasks. This includes using VMM Intelligent Placement, VM Templates, and other automated VM deployment tools. In addition, Module 4 describes using VMM to move VMs between available hosts.
Deploying VMs
Moving VMs Between Hosts
Lab : Deploying and Managing VMs (Deploying VMs; Using Intelligent Placement)
Module 5: Converting from Physical or Virtual Platforms
Module 5 describes important considerations for converting physical and virtual computers to Microsoft VMs. This includes procedures for using deployment agents to execute conversions to Microsoft VMs as well as converting from third-party formats.
Converting Physical Computers to Virtual Machines
Migrating Virtual Machines to Hyper-V
Lab : Converting Virtual Machines Using VMM (Converting a Microsoft Virtual Server VM; Converting a VMWare Virtual Machine)
Module 6: Deploying Highly Available VMs
Module 6 describes considerations and procedures for deploying clustered VMs.
Introducing Virtual Machine High Availability
Deploying Host Clustering
Deploying Guest Clustering
Lab : Planning for Highly Available Virtual Machines (Designing Host Clustering Hardware; Selecting Guest Clustering Type)
Module 7: Managing Virtual Machine Checkpoints and Updates
Module 7 describes procedures for managing VMs using checkpoints and updates. This includes identifying scenarios for using VMM VM Checkpoints and procedures for creating VM Checkpoints. In addition, Module 7 describes update deployment using WSUS and SCCM tools.
Managing Virtual Machine Checkpoints
Managing Virtual Machine Updates
Lab : Managing Virtual Machine Checkpoints and Updates (Managing Virtual Machine Checkpoints; Managing Virtual Machine Updates)
Module 8: Implementing Monitoring and Reporting
Module 8 describes procedures for integrating System Center Operations Manager with VMM to extend the capabilities of VMM. This includes using SCOM reporting with VMM. In addition, Module 8 describes using SCOM to select potential virtualization targets and to monitor and plan host server utilization.
Integrating System Center Operations Manager
Performance and Resource Optimization
Planning and Managing Hyper-V
Lab : Configuring VMM and Operations Manager for Reporting (Setting Up VMM for Reporting and PRO; Enabling PRO; Viewing Reports)
Module 9: Monitoring and Troubleshooting Jobs
Module 9 describes procedures for monitoring and troubleshooting VMM jobs. This includes monitoring and verifying multiple job types as well as recovering from failed jobs.
Monitoring Jobs
Troubleshooting and Repairing Jobs
Lab : Troubleshooting Jobs (Using PowerShell to View Jobs; Running PowerShell Script to Generate Jobs; Managing Jobs; Troubleshooting Failed Jobs)

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Microsoft tech•ed Europe 2009, Berlin, 13 November 2009

Going home very early this morning, but as a TechEd newbie I made a few notes & tips to self:


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