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Sunbelt W2Knews™ Electronic Newsletter
The secret of those "who always seem to know" - Over 500,000 Readers!
Mon, Oct 2, 2000 (Vol. 5, #46 - Issue #220)
Now scan your _own_ IP for holes
  This issue of W2Knews™ contains:
  1. EDITORS CORNER
    • New SunPoll! // Now scan your _own_ IP for holes
  2. TECH BRIEFING
    • "My users and management do not allow disk quotas"
  3. NT/2000 RELATED NEWS
    • Need Help Cost Justifying Your IT Purchases? Try "REJ"
    • MS Launches Datacenter Infrastructure Vendor Program (DIV)
  4. NT/2000 THIRD PARTY NEWS
    • Promote your NT-Server into an NT Domain Controller!
    • New Security Explorer V4 Has Cool New Features
    • Sunbelt Now Offers Double-Take Installation Service
    • Need To Monitor Exchange? NEW TOOL: Real-View
  5. W2Knews 'FAVE' LINKS
    • This Week's Links We Like. Tips, Hints And Fun Stuff
  6. PRODUCT OF THE WEEK
    • Windows 2000 Essential Reference
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  EDITORS CORNER

New SunPoll! // Now scan your _own_ IP for holes

Hi NT/W2K Pros,

Two short point for you.

1) Dang, time flies. It's already the fourth quarter of Year 2000! Windows 2000 is now finally completely there with the Datacenter release so we have a new SunPoll for you. Want to see what your colleagues are doing? Fill out the survey and find out: (we delete entries of people that vote more than once, but it's a so called non scientific survey)

Question: Are you pursuing Windows 2000 MCSE certification?

  1. No, I'm too overloaded to even think about it
  2. Perhaps, when I can create some time for it
  3. Yes, I'm planning to do that for sure
  4. Already cramming for my first exams!

Left column on this page:
http://www.sunbelt-software.com/index.htm

You told us in our earlier survey that you wanted an HTML version, so we will come out with one before the end of the year. But this one will look _very_ different from any other HTML news you get, and will be combined with something very special we have customized especially for system administrators.

2) QualysGuard has had a Tsunami of interest. Thousands of you wanted to see what it would be like to 'hack' your own networks. The web-based demo we had showed a fast 'canned demo' but many of you wanted to scan your own IP's. YOU CAN DO THAT NOW! Most of you took step #1 (web-demo) and you have seen how it works. Step #2 is to fill out a form for a ONE TIME, ONE IP scan of one of your own IP-addresses. Go to the bottom end of the QualysGuard Page, click on this link: 'Run QualysGuard Web-based DEMO', fill out the form and then fill out the special FAX FORM and fax it to Qualys. They will fax you back an account, username and password after confirming that you really own the IP address you want to scan. (Why fax? Duh, Security!)
http://www.sunbelt-software.com/product.cfm?id=545

Make sure you come and see us at the Microsoft Exchange Conference in Dallas, Oct 10-13-th. For a special promotional give-away we have 2,500 actual steel 'QualysGuard handcuffs'. Check 'em out on the QualysGuard page
http://www.microsoft.com/corpevents/MEC2000/

Want to work in Paris, France for a few years as an in-house Account Rep? Check:
http://www.sunbelt-software.com/techjobs.cfm

Want to have a good laugh? Try:
http://www.mslinux.org/

Warm regards,

Stu Sjouwerman
(email me with feedback: [email protected])

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  TECH BRIEFING

"My users and management do not allow disk quotas"

At many sites, user storage consumption on NT/W2K servers is out of control. You tried just throwing more disks at the problem only to delay the inevitable; 6 months later you?re back to where you started. You like the ideas of quotas, but management and your users complain. What are you going to do?

In a recent survey only 14% of IT managers wanted the functionality to _enforce_ quotas on their users, but 86%(!) of these same managers would like to be able to track and monitor user-based disk consumption. Why? Make sure that each user on the system has enough space to do his or her job effectively.

You need some tool to make sure the guy down the hall does not fill up the server with the pictures of his kids only to cause your real data not to be backed up, or become unavailable when the server runs out of space.

What are Smart Quotas?

To begin with, there are hard- and soft quotas. Hard quotas are the ones that are enforced and do not allow a user to write to the disk until he has deleted some files. Soft quotas combined with automated user education could also be called Smart Quotas. If you could monitor disk space consumption, then be able to have flexible reports emailed to whomever you want (including the user), now that would allow you to implement a strategy where you can put in some control without being the 'bad guy'.

Smart Quotas educate your users on proper storage habits

There is a tool that you can use for this: StorageCeNTral. It generates real-time disk usage reports. These reports identify over 200 common file problems, from identifying excessive MP3, jpeg and wav files, to identifying duplicate files that have not been accessed in over a year. The best part is that you can send these reports dynamically to your users. They can use them to actually perform their own file management on the files identified in the report, and they can do that right from Internet Explorer.

No more printing out file listings only to set out on a manual seek and destroy mission. This way you can monitor and control storage usage without curtailing user storage consumption until you determine it to be a problem. It's a smart solution and in most organizations it is perceived as politically correct and has a high acceptance rate.

Waiting for the quota functionality in Windows 2000? Microsoft has deployed Smart Quotas in their corporate data centers worldwide. What version of Windows are they running? W2K of course.

I need it! But I don?t have time to solve the problem!

With StorageCeNTral?s Smart Quota technology, configuration takes less than 30 minutes. If you don?t have 30 minutes call Sunbelt's implementation help line. We can walk you through a configuration over the phone, or our implementation team can come to you to solve the problem of runaway storage once and for all. 30-day eval here:
http://www.sunbelt-software.com/product.cfm?id=423

  NT/2000 RELATED NEWS

Need Help Cost Justifying Your IT Purchases? Try "REJ"

OK, here is the latest concept to shake loose budget money for those cool latest hard- and software releases you have been wanting to roll out. Microsoft has come up with a new term that makes ROI (Return On Investment) obsolete.

The magic word is now "Rapid Economic Justification". MS claims that with REJ you can "plan and effectively prove that IT projects aligned with the organization's goals and strategies deliver the maximum business value." For me, that is simply a different way of saying that this tool will pay back for itself in 6 months, make the work of a whole bunch of people more efficient, and saves us X thousand per year from the seventh month forward.

But many times you need to fluff it up a bit, and come with at least one page of justification. Otherwise, how are you going to get those dollars you need? Here's how to build a bridge of common language between IT nerds like us, and Management that thinks in 'shareholder value terms'.
http://www.microsoft.com/solutions/value/REJwp.htm

MS Launches Datacenter Infrastructure Vendor Program (DIV)

At the same time as the Datacenter Launch last Sept 26, Microsoft launched their new DIV program to qualify strategic infrastructure vendors such as enterprise storage and enterprise backup vendors. The DIV provides you with additional choice while preserving overall system integrity.

[PR HYPE ALERT] "With the delivery of the Windows Datacenter Program, we have changed the way we do business," CEO Ballmer said. "Microsoft has teamed with industry leaders to provide innovative technology and broad alter- natives to expensive proprietary systems, offering customers uncompromising reliability, flexibility and scalability." [/ALERT]

But I think you got the general idea anyway. W2K Datacenter server will at long last allow Microsoft to make a bid for new datacenter business opportunities. MS teamed up with major players in the industry and the creation of a rigorously pre-tested and certified bundle of hard- and software pits W2K Datacenter against the status quo UNIX-based solutions.

The funny thing is that these status quo companies MS teamed up with _are_ the existing Unix players (HP, Unisys, Compaq, IBM, Hitachi and others) so they are now competing with themselves. It is going to be interesting how they will justify this. Watch out for some crafty PR-language.

Obviously MS claims that Datacenter achieves higher reliability, better scalability and availability over UNIX. Personally I think that is more PR exaggeration. They probably will be cheaper than Unix, but not by all _that_ much, since Datacenter is not cheap, and MS increased SQL 2000 Enterprise version prices dramatically. Veritest has begun testing/certifying applications for Datacenter, which they have done for years for the other MS OS-es. To earn the Datacenter Cert, apps must work correctly on up to 32-way systems and four-way clusters.

MS put a few case studies on their website you can check out here:
http://www.microsoft.com/windows2000/guide/datacenter/studies/default.asp

  THIRD PARTY NEWS

Promote your NT-Server into an NT Domain Controller!

U-Promote is a Best Seller in the Sunbelt OnLineShop. Did you know you can promote your NT Server into an NT Domain Controller? U-Promote is the only software utility that can promote your NT server to an NT Domain Controller (PDC or BDC) without having to go through the pain of re-installing the whole OS.

Don't make the wrong choice! When you installed Windows NT Server, you were asked if you wanted to create a domain controller (DC). Your choice was permanent. If you declined, you could never create one later (KB article Q193219). You can get it from the OnLineShop in less than a minute.

With U-Promote you can:
Change a standalone NT server to a Primary Domain Controller (PDC).
Change a Primary Domain Controller to a standalone NT server.
Change a standalone NT server to a Backup Domain Controller (BDC).
Change a Backup Domain Controller to a standalone NT server.

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Save days of downtime.
Lose none of your applications or preferences.
Upgrade even NT Workstation.
Create new BDCs.
Demote a DC to a Standalone Server.
Move a BDC to another domain.
Move a BDC to a Windows 2000 domain.

Cost? Practically nothing. Single Computer: $99. Unlimited: $239.95. Buy it here:
http://www.sunbelt-software.com/product.cfm?id=700

New Security Explorer V4 Has Cool New Features

Simplifying W2K's new NTFS inheritance model and extended permissions, Security Explorer does the trick. Small Wonders Software released SE4.0, a useful security assessment tool for managing permissions. This latest release fully supports W2K's new NTFS inheritance model and extended permissions. What that means? You can now modify any permissions without affecting any other users, for both NT and W2K.

Unlike Windows 2000's native ACL editor, Security Explorer shows progress as it is setting inherited permissions on child objects along with any errors that occur. Additionally, this new version of Security Explorer auto detects the target operating system, allowing you to properly modify permissions on both Windows NT and Windows 2000.

Lots of your colleagues use Security Explorer for one-time lock downs and security analyses, managing permissions on a daily/weekly basis, backing-up security descriptors on folders and files and being able to restore these when needed, as well as for web-based security administration.

"Security Explorer does all this and more, it is simply much easier to use than the new Windows 2000 permissions editor. Security Explorer, version 4.0 offers noteworthy time and money savings for small, medium and large enterprises," said Brian Small, President of Small Wonders Software. Download your eval over here and see how this works:
http://www.sunbelt-software.com/product.cfm?id=788

Sunbelt Now Offers Double-Take Installation Service

To start in the USA, now you can have a Sunbelt System Engineer on- site to help you install our Number One selling Double-Take product. It is a High-Availability and Disaster Recovery solution in-one. Recently, the developer also introduced its second product called GeoCluster and this allows you to break two MSCS cluster nodes apart and spread them from each other with their own separate storage to make sure that disasters would not wipe your cluster (and business) out.

Double-Take is the industry's most popular utility for continuous data availability and real-time data replication. It basically boils down to just one career-saving concept: DOWNTIME-PREVENTION. Find out why Compaq, Data General/EMC, Dell, HP, IBM, and Microsoft recommend Double-Take and GeoCluster for their server solutions, and have it installed for you.
http://www.sunbelt-software.com/product.cfm?id=111

Need To Monitor Exchange? NEW TOOL: Real-View

This tool allows you to control and visually display your Exchange network health and usage. You can see the availability of servers, queue levels, failed message transfers, user-defined thresholds and much, much, much more. PROMOTIONAL PRICING UNTIL OCTOBER 31, 2000 IS ONLY $995 PER SERVER (Which is a steal for a tool like this).

Real-View gathers data directly from your Microsoft Exchange Server and Windows NT system and displays them as an intuitive Network Topology. Real-View dynamically places these objects in its object store. With a simple mouse click and drag, Administrators can place objects on the Network Topology view and obtain data. The Dynamic animated changes of objects display availability of servers, queues, failed message transfers and user-defined thresholds.

- Real-Time Queue Management
Exchange Administrators can now monitor various connectors including direct connectors to the Internet Mail Connector, cc:Mail connector, Exchange Information Store statistics and Exchange MTA Queue Monitoring.

- End to End Object Management
With Real-View, you can monitor all objects from point to point. You can track the complete route of messages and view number of messages coming both in and out of a specific server or connector.

- Trend Analysis - Real-Time Charting
Administrators can now monitor both peaks and valleys of messages coming through their system to analyze where their bottlenecks may arise. Real-View charting diagnoses message trends coming through Exchange Servers, Internet Mail Connector, cc:Mail Connector and the Exchange Information Store.

- Java Enabled Real-View Console
The Real-View java console allows you to view Real-View data over the Internet and arrange objects on the network topology just like they would arrange in the main Real-View Network Topology. Take a look at the Java Console and click on node status for objects.

- Exchange Service Center
Administrators can now monitor which Exchange Services are running on an NT server through the Service Center. Real-View will indicate the services? current status and display the last time it checked on the services? status.

- Exchange Event Management
When user-defined thresholds for message queues through connectors (Exchange, Internet and cc:Mail) are exceeded and/or message transfers fail, you will recognize visual changes in objects and flag them as Real-View events.

- Real-View Response Technology
From Real-View, you will be able to manipulate start/shut down services for their Exchange servers. No additional tasks are placed on the server. Real-View remains passive. This enables you to respond proactively when there are bottlenecks or system failures within the Exchange environment.
http://www.sunbelt-software.com/product.cfm?id=341

  FAVE LINKS

This Week's Links We Like. Tips, Hints And Fun Stuff

  • What is WBEM? Web-Based Enterprise Management. 'WMI' is Microsoft's implementation of this.
    http://www.dmtf.org/spec/wbem.html
  • The best FAQ for all NT and 2000 questions is John Savill's one at
    http://www.ntfaq.com/
  • Did you know that Sunbelt has a glossary on-line with a lot of NT-related terms?
    http://www.sunbelt-software.com/ntfaq.cfm
  •   PRODUCT OF THE WEEK

    Windows 2000 Essential Reference

    The 40% Discount ends October 6-th so you have only a few days left!

    Designed to streamline information on Windows 2000, this concise reference enables you to navigate quickly to find the answers you need. Using a series of jump tables, cross-references, frequently asked questions, and concise steps, this unique tutorial-reference goes beyond the help files to give you what you need to demystify Windows 2000. Within the logically ordered sections on such topics as directory, file, and network services management, security, remote access and dynamic DNS you can find details on where to find additional information. A unique "Going Deeper" section enables you to dig further into Windows 2000 capabilities.

    Find it at the
    http://www.sunbelt-software.com/bookclub/

    Q. Where are the Security event ID's listed?
    A: They are defined in the MS Knowledge Base article Q174074 but here is a link with all of them nicely lined up in a table:
    http://www.ntfaq.com/Articles/Index.cfm?ArticleID=15361