WindowsNetworking.com Monthly Newsletter

WindowsNetworking.com Monthly Newsletter of October 2011 Sponsored by: Veeam Software

Welcome to the WindowsNetworking.com newsletter by Debra Littlejohn Shinder, MVP. Each month we will bring you interesting and helpful information on the world of Windows Networking. We want to know what all *you* are interested in hearing about. Please send your suggestions for future newsletter content to: dshinder@windowsnetworking.com

Veeam webinar on demand! Best Practices for Monitoring VMware with SCOM

Join Microsoft MVPs Cameron Fuller and Pete Zerger, and Alec King, Director of Product Management at Veeam Software and get the most out of VMware vSphere and Microsoft System Center Operations Manage. Watch the recorded webinar and discover the six key concepts including monitoring with the “virtualization stack” in mind, creating a dynamic user experience, and sorting actionable alerts from alert noise.

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1. First Look at Windows Server 8: Will It Change Everything?

Last month’s BUILD conference provided those outside Microsoft with a first hands-on opportunity to get to know Windows 8, and the tech industry has been buzzing about it, but most of the focus has been on the client OS. That’s understandable, since it’s expected that the new operating system will first be released on tablet devices, and that’s where consumer interest lies. IT pros, though, are just as curious about the server version of the OS. Those who haven’t had a chance to play with it are undoubtedly wondering just how much will change, how steep the learning curve will be, and whether it will help or hinder them (or a little of both) in getting their jobs done.

We all know that Microsoft has declared itself “all in” with the cloud, so it should come as no surprise that Windows Server 8 (as it’s currently being called) has been optimized to operate in the cloud - in both its private and public incarnations.  Of course, it’s still in pre-beta form now, and nobody knows how many changes there’ll be between now and final release, but it’s full of new features aimed at enterprises and cloud providers.  Given that target audience, it’s also no surprise that virtualization (meaning Hyper-V) is front and center in the list of “new and improved features.”  Virtual machines are about to get far more scalable than you might have ever expected, and migrating VMs is going to get far easier with all the enhancements to the Live Migration feature. Next month, we’ll go into detail about all the great new stuff that’s coming to Hyper-V. For Remote Desktop fans, there are some truly exciting improvements to VDI, with support for touch/remote touch, 3D and more.

The most immediately noticeable change in Server 8 is the Metro Start Screen, which you can see here

It takes you to the newly redesigned Server Manager, which has morphed from the familiar MMC model with the hierarchical tree in the left pane to a dashboard with a distinctly Metro look.  You can see it here.

Windows 8, like Windows Phone, is all about tiles and in Server 8’s Server Manager, tiles represent specific services and display “live” information about them.  You can even group services across servers and manage them that way.

If you aren’t all that taken with the new graphical UI, never fear: PowerShell is here - with far more cmdlets than before.  And it’s been enhanced for those who aren’t scripting wizards; with the new Intellisense feature, it will give you help with cmdlet syntax. You have a choice of three modes for deploying Server 8: full GUI, full Server with some elements (such as IE and Windows Explorer) missing, or Server Core. And here’s what’s cool: you can switch between core and graphical interface without reinstalling the OS.

Then there are all those “little things that mean a lot,” such as support for NIC team binding (up to 32 NICs), IP Address Management (IPAM), enhancements to DirectAccess, an interface overhaul for Active Directory, storage enhancements and way more. You’ll be seeing a lot of Windows Server 8 over the next few months (it’s expected to be released sometime in 2012) and I’m sure we’ll see plenty of refinements in the beta. I’m looking forward to that journey and I hope you’ll join me on it!

See you next month! - Deb.

By Debra Littlejohn Shinder, MVP
dshinder@windowsnetworking.com

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Quote of the Month - “The Cloud Blows (or was that the wind?)" - Anonymous
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Veeam webinar on demand! Best Practices for Monitoring VMware with SCOM

Join Microsoft MVPs Cameron Fuller and Pete Zerger, and Alec King, Director of Product Management at Veeam Software and get the most out of VMware vSphere and Microsoft System Center Operations Manage. Watch the recorded webinar and discover the six key concepts including monitoring with the “virtualization stack” in mind, creating a dynamic user experience, and sorting actionable alerts from alert noise.

Watch now

3. WindowsNetworking.com Articles of Interest

4. Administrator KB Tip of the Month

Enable Basic Auth for WebDAV on Windows 7

If you are having difficulty using Windows 7 to connect to a Web-based application on an Apache/Linux-based WebDAV server, you may need to enable support for Basic Authentication for WebDAV on your Windows 7 computer. To do this, open the Registry Editor and create the following new registry entry under

HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\WebClient\Parameters:

Name: BasicAuthLevel
Type: DWORD (32-bit) Value
Value: 2

If you do this, you should make sure the Web-application uses SSL since the Basic Auth password is sent in cleartext.

Note that the possible values you can assign to this new registry entry are:

0 - Basic authentication disabled
1 - Basic authentication enabled for Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) shares only
2 or greater - Basic authentication enabled for SSL shares and for non-SSL shares

For more administrator tips, go to WindowsNetworking.com/WindowsTips

5. Windows Networking Tip of the Month

As we move slowly but surely into the cloud, you’ll probably be interested in the availability of cloud services that can reduce the administrative overhead related to your on-premises infrastructure. One of the things you might want to consider is Windows InTune. Some of the things that InTune can do for you include:

  • Make sure computers have the latest software updates applied
  • Take inventory of the software installed on the computers
  • Generate detailed reports on your hardware inventory
  • Monitor computers for problems such as missing updates
  • Protect computers from malware infections
  • Provide Remote Assistance when the user is experiencing difficulties

InTune is a pretty nifty cloud service that looks as if it’ll be very attractive to small and medium sized businesses that don’t want to set up a complex on-premises infrastructure to get everything that InTune provides. For more information on the technical underpinnings of InTune, check out Mitch Tulloch’s article on the web site here

Veeam webinar on demand! Best Practices for Monitoring VMware with SCOM

Join Microsoft MVPs Cameron Fuller and Pete Zerger, and Alec King, Director of Product Management at Veeam Software and get the most out of VMware vSphere and Microsoft System Center Operations Manage. Watch the recorded webinar and discover the six key concepts including monitoring with the “virtualization stack” in mind, creating a dynamic user experience, and sorting actionable alerts from alert noise.

Watch now

6. Windows Networking Links of the Month

7. Ask Sgt. Deb

QUESTION:

Hey Deb,

What about private cloud security? I’ve got guys coming into my datacenter to talk about private cloud and how it’s the path to the public cloud, but what about security? What are the things I need to think about when it comes to private cloud security? I know about public cloud security and the issues revolving around multitenancy and a non-transparent infrastructure, but I own the private cloud. Can I do the same things I do in my current datacenter when I move to private cloud? Thanks! –Kaspar.

ANSWER:

Hi Kaspar,

Good question. For the most part, you’ll be doing things as you’re doing them in your current LAN based datacenter. However, because virtualization is a big part of private cloud, you’ll need to think about the virtualization security issues that exist in any virtualized datacenter. Hypervisor security, workload separation, offline patching, delegation of administration and role based access control are just a few of the things you’ll need to consider. For a comprehensive review of cloud and private cloud security, check out the article Cloud Computing Security Architecture on the TechNet wiki.

Veeam webinar on demand! Best Practices for Monitoring VMware with SCOM

Join Microsoft MVPs Cameron Fuller and Pete Zerger, and Alec King, Director of Product Management at Veeam Software and get the most out of VMware vSphere and Microsoft System Center Operations Manage. Watch the recorded webinar and discover the six key concepts including monitoring with the “virtualization stack” in mind, creating a dynamic user experience, and sorting actionable alerts from alert noise.

Watch now

TechGenix Sites

ISAserver.org
The No.1 Forefront TMG / UAG and ISA Server resource site.
MSExchange.org
The leading Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 / 2007 / 2003 resource site.
WindowSecurity.com
Network Security & Information Security resource for IT administrators.
VirtualizationAdmin.com
The essential Virtualization resource site for administrators.