Using PowerShell on Linux
Posted by Andrea Mauro on May 1, 2018

1 - Using PowerShell Core - Comands

PowerShell is a command line (CLI) scripting language developed by Microsoft to simplify automation and configuration management, consisting of a command-line shell and associated scripting language.

It’s a (huge) evolution (or better a revolution) from the original DOS batch language (still supported in latest Windows OS with the cmd.exe command), and it’s really better compared to the different previous attempts to replace the batch language (like Windows Script Host).

Windows PowerShell (actually at version 5.1) is the edition of PowerShell built on top of .NET Framework (sometimes referred to as “FullCLR”). Because of its dependency on the .NET Framework, Windows PowerShell is only available on Windows (hence the name). The released versions of Windows PowerShell include 1.0, 2.0, 3.0, 4.0, 5.0, and 5.1. Windows PowerShell is launched as powershell.exe.

PowerShell initially was a Windows component only, known as Windows PowerShell, but recently it was made open-source and cross-platform on 18 August 2016 with the introduction of PowerShell Core.

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SMB Direct – The State of RDMA for use with SMB 3 traffic (Part III)
Posted by Didier Van Hoye on April 24, 2018

1 - Explicit congestion notification diagram

The RDMA wars in regards to SMB Direct: RoCE versus iWarp.

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Using the Microsoft Certificate Authority to get rid of those self-signed certs
Posted by Mike Preston on March 29, 2018

 

SelfSignedWarning

Most every application we run in our datacenters today provides some sort of web-based interface.  The push to move to HTML5, API driven GUIs is a good one – we can access things from anywhere, using any device or browser.  The problem being we are also seeing a push for security, more specifically ensuring that all our web accessible interfaces are running through SSL and only accessed through https.  With this we are seeing a lot of applications providing users the ability to generate self-signed certificates to get the job done.  While this is ok, you may be thrown off and annoyed by the constant nagging from modern browsers such and Chrome, Firefox, and Edge – having to accept the self-signed cert bypassing some scary messages.  To get around this administrators can go out and purchase a certificate from a trusted authority, however this could get pretty expensive if you start adding up all of the self-signed certificates within your environment.  Another answer – the Microsoft Certificate Server.

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How to DevOps with Azure?
Posted by Nicolas Prigent on March 21, 2018

wp-image-7624

In this article, I will not explain what is and what is not DevOps. I just want to describe how to implement a DevOps Project in your Azure subscription through the new service called “DevOps Projects”. This new service has been released in November 2017. The “DevOps Projects” service allows you to deploy and monitor your application in Azure.

Visual Studio Team Services and Team Foundation Services are Microsoft’s DevOps solutions for Azure. I’m not a VS or TFS expert, but as you will see, implementing DevOps with Azure is very straightforward. Microsoft says that you can implement your project in less than 5 minutes! Let’s see if it’s true.

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Demystifying HTTPS
Posted by Gary Williams on March 15, 2018
Tags: , ,

Security Report Summary A+

In my time in IT I’ve installed certificates quite a few times on various web servers and into various applications but it’s really only in the past two years that I’ve started looking into HTTPS and the myriad of options that come with certificates which are often hidden deep into config files but yet can make the difference between a site that can be rendered vulnerable via a HTTPS downgrade attack or one that is actually secure because today, installing a cert is simply the tip of the iceberg so I thought it might be handy to go through the options that need to be set in a web servers config file in order to get A+ on both the Qualys and securityheaders.io web servers.

This blog is going to be all about the secure certificate side of things, by setting these headers you reduce the chances of certain types of probes and attacks from being successful. The server itself and whatever applications you are running on it still need to be upgraded and configured to reduce the chances of someone gaining unauthorised access to your systems.

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CLI vs. GUI for VMware Admins
Posted by Andrea Mauro on March 13, 2018
Tags: , , ,

CLI vs. GUI for VMware Admins

The term User Interface (UI) is used for specifying how a user interacts with a specific device, or software. CLI and GUI are two different types of possible user interfaces.

Let’s analyze those different approaches and the pro and cons of them, using the VMware vSphere environment as an example.

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Simplify storage management with Microsoft Systems Center VMM (SCVMM) and SMI-S
Posted by Ivan Ischenko on March 8, 2018

Manage StarWind VSAN storage from SCVMM using SMI-S - new logical volume for our StarWind device

SMI-S or ‘Storage Management Initiative – Specification’ is a standard of a storage management (surprise!) which gives you a chance to administrate the storage layer using ‘Common Information Model’ and Web-Based Enterprise Management technologies and logic. The main point of SMI-S is to provide a single standard to manage various storage systems from different vendors pretty much in the same way. In this article (?) we will show you how to manage your storage using SCVMM 2016 (Server Center Virtual Machine Manager) through SMI-S, and how this whole thing works in general. We’ll use StarWind Virtual SAN as a reference distributed storage platform, but the primary scope of this document is to cover the subject in general, so any SMI-S compatible storage will work.

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How to enable Active Directory Recycle Bin in Windows Server 2016
Posted by Vladan Seget on March 1, 2018

Before we dive into how to enable Active Directory Recycle Bin in Windows Server 2016, we will first explain what it is and when Microsoft introduced this feature.

Active Directory Recycle Bin simply allows you to restore deleted objects from Active Directory. It can be a user account, computer account or a whole Organizational Unit (OU). Who did not accidentally delete an AD object in his career?

 

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How to Use Azure DevTest Labs?
Posted by Nicolas Prigent on February 15, 2018

Azure Dev Test Labs

Official Microsoft description:

“Azure DevTest Lab is a service that helps developers and testers to quickly create environments in Azure while minimizing waste and controlling cost. You can test latest version of your application by quickly provisioning Windows and Linux environments using reusable templates and artifacts.”

In other words, Azure DevTest Labs is a great service that will help you to implement DevOps in your organization. Azure DevTest Labs will allows you to easily deploy Virtual Machines in order to test your workload in Azure. Setting up a development and test environment can take lots of time for your Ops Team. Let’s imagine that you have developers that want to be able to test their application using the latest version of SQL Server. You must:

  1. Deploy the VM
  2. Configure the VM
  3. Test the VM
  4. Configure RBAC
  5. Send the VM information with credentials to the Dev Team
  6. Check with the Dev Team if everything is ok
  7. If not, you must reconfigure the VM
  8. Check once again with the Dev Team

And so on…

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Nested Virtualization in Azure with StarWind Virtual SAN. Part 2: Hybrid Cloud
Posted by Dmytro Malynka on February 13, 2018

Hybrid deployment architectures

You all probably know that our main goal is delivering all the “building blocks” required to construct a full-stack IT infrastructure. This is ensured by a portfolio that has solutions for most business problems for IT systems. With the ever-increasing popularity of cloud computing, StarWind has recently created an easy-entry-to-cloud solution suitable for any businesses. It ensures that your data is always safe and readily available, regardless of outside factors.

Before we take a deep dive into StarWind Hybrid Cloud, let’s overview common cloud deployment models.

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