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You can’t have too much monitoring
Posted by Gary Williams on May 25, 2017
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One of the things I come across time and again is a lack of monitoring in what are supposed to be corporate environments. I am honestly surprised at how little monitoring is carried out on infrastructure. These days, it is quite possible to carry out some very in-depth monitoring by using a freely available software on Linux and Windows. In this article, I’m going to go through the various monitoring tools that I use to monitor both production and my lab environment.

Having extensive monitoring in a lab is handy when testing systems as not only are it possible to get an idea of the sorts of information you can get from the device when it’s in production but you also get to see how it works thanks to having a greater visibility of the system. These little insights are always handy for putting into documentation ahead of deploying to production plus it’s a huge help when you’ve already seen error messages before and have a clearer understanding of what may have caused them.

Graylog view server CPU usage diagram

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Intraforest Migration in Windows Server 2016 with Active Directory Migration Tool (ADMT) 3.2
Posted by Karim Buzdar on May 23, 2017
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In this first blog post, I’ll walk you through to migrate Active Directory objects (users, groups, and workstations or member servers) between two domains in the same forest (Intraforest) using Active Directory Migration Tool (ADMT) 3.2.

ADMT allows you to migrate objects (including users, groups, computers, profiles, service and managed service accounts) with the help of ADMT console, command line, and VBScript. However, in this post, I’ll focus only on ADMT console and command line.

Lab topology overview

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Virtual Tape Library on Azure used with Microsoft System Center Data Protection Manager 2016
Posted by Alex Khorolets on May 22, 2017
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Introduction

Tapes have been on the “backup market” for a long time and still are considered as a good option to store and secure a high amount of backup data. However, the continuous increase of backup size becomes a bottleneck in terms of fitting backup windows and reduces a simplicity and redundancy of backup solutions. Today more and more companies consider backing up their production data to more reasonable storage solutions, like Clouds.

Here comes in hand the technology that emulates physical tapes on top of inexpensive, fast, and high-capacity spindle drives.

System Center 2016 DPM Administrator Console

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Data Management Moves to the Fore. Part 4: Why Cognitive Data Management?
Posted by Jon Toigo on May 11, 2017
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In previous installments of this blog, we have deconstructed the idea of cognitive data management (CDM) to identify its “moving parts” and to define what each part contributes to a holistic process for managing files and more structured content.

First and foremost, CDM requires a Policy Management Framework that identifies classes of data and specifies their hosting, protection, preservation and privacy requirements of each data class over its useful life.  This component reflects the nature of data, whose access requirements and protection priorities tend to change over time.

Elements of a Cognitive Data Management platform

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StarWind Virtual Storage Appliance Linux edition
Posted by Alex Bykovskyi on May 5, 2017
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Introduction

This article describes the new StarWind Virtual Storage Appliance, which was released on 26th of April. StarWind has always been a Windows native solution. However, due to market trends and the huge interest of our customers, we have decided to work in Linux direction. The main goal of the article is to show what StarWind VSA can do for clients and how you can work with it.

StarWind Linux-based VSA

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Microsoft Announces IoT Central: SaaS Platform to Simplify the Internet-of-Things
Posted by Augusto Alvarez on May 2, 2017
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Microsoft is always looking to offer newer and faster ways for their customers to embrace cloud services, even if you are not moving any of your workloads to Azure, MS wants for your company to integrate with the cloud. Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platforms are a simple way to start, even for Internet-of-Things (IoT), that’s why the Redmond company is announcing: IoT Central.

Microsoft IoT Central image

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How to install VPN access on Windows Server 2016
Posted by Vladan Seget on May 1, 2017
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I did previously setup during a few occasions, VPN access on Windows Server 2012 R2, but haven’t tested that on the newly released Windows Server 2016.

Remote access role is a VPN which protects the network connection or your remote connection from one side to another and protecting both sides from attacks or data sniffing as VPN protocol uses a tunnel inside of a standard data connection.

Open the getting started wizard

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Integrating StarWind Virtual Tape Library (VTL) with Microsoft System Center Data Protection Manager
Posted by Dmytro Khomenko on April 28, 2017
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Introduction

The reason for writing this article was the goal of eliminating any possible confusion in the process of configuring the StarWind Virtual Tape Library in pair with the Microsoft System Center Data Protection Manager.

The integration of SCDPM provides a benefit of consolidating the view of alerts across all your DPM 2016 servers. Alerts are grouped by disk or tape, data source, protection group and replica volumes, which simplifies troubleshooting. The grouping functionality is further completed with the console capable of separating issues that only affect one data source from problems that impact multiple data sources. Alerts are also separated into backup failure or infrastructure problems.

StarWind VTL configuration with SCDPM

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[Azure] Virtual Network Peering
Posted by Florent Appointaire on April 27, 2017
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On 28th of September, Microsoft has released the Virtual Network peering, in GA.

This new functionality gives you the opportunity to connect 2 Virtual Network in Azure between them, by using the network of the Azure Datacenter. Bye bye VPN S2S between virtual network 🙂

Microsoft Azure Resource Manager virtual networks peering

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VMware’s Photon and containers in VMware
Posted by Gary Williams on April 12, 2017
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The past month has been categorized as something of a performance and upgrades challenge as one of the constant calls I hear is “application X is going to slow”, of course, a month ago it was fine but today it isn’t and normally this is just down to increasing load.
One of the common fixes for increasing load is to add more vCPU and RAM but often that can cause its own set of problems especially when NUMA boundaries are crossed and when vCPU contention pushes things a little too far.
The second part of the challenge is the upgrade challenge where various applications need upgrading but there are dependency chains to take into account, this is the sort of thing where application X needs a very specific version of application y. In those cases, an upgrade is much easier to do by reinstalling the OS and starting again then transferring the data across!

As a potential solution to these issues that I’ve been exploring is Docker on VMWare’s Photon OS.

 VMware Photon logo

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