Vol. 22, #23 - June 05, 2017 - Issue #1134

Bad day for BA


Veeam User Group: online exclusive. 


Join Rick Vanover for this exclusive online event. Everything from product settings to whiteboard diagrams will be showcased in this interactive session. We’ll recap key initiatives from VeeamON 2017 and discuss tips and tricks specific to some of the new Veeam products. The agenda is informal, allowing you to drive the conversation.

Another great reason to attend: all participants will be entered in a raffle to win a $100 Amazon gift card.

Register to attend.

Editor's Corner

This week's newsletter summarizes what we know and can learn from the IT disaster that hit British Airways last weekend. We've also added a brand new section called IT Pro Fitness Corner to our weekly newsletter so all of you "fat IT pros" out there (myself included) can become "fit IT pros" which sounds a heck of a lot better, doesn't it? And we have the usual tips, tools, articles and videos. 

Being overweight is a common problem that plagues our stressful profession. About four years ago I chronicled my own difficult journey from fat IT pro to (moderately) fit IT pro in two issues of this newsletter: Issue #922: From Fat to Fit IT Pro - The Beginning and Issue #926: From Fat to Fit IT Pro - The Conclusion and one result of my sharing my story was that numerous readers of our newsletter sent me feedback on their own struggles to get fit and lose weight along with lots of helpful tips of which we were able to share a few with our readers at the time. But losing weight and getting into shape is ultimately a journey not a destination (to use an overworked phrase) which means I'm still struggling to keep my weight down and stay fit enough to handle the sometimes overwhelming stress of being a busy IT pro. And I'm sure that many of you, our loyal readers, are experiencing a similar struggle to balance your work and life so you can stay healthy and sane. 

So let's not be like Dilbert and ignore our doctor's advice when he says we need to exercise:


Ask Our Readers - CMOS wire broken (one more response)

Last week we included some answers from readers to this question sent to us by a reader named Duff two weeks ago:

My name is Duff and I am always tinkering with computers. I have an IBM X Series 232 loaded with 4 SCSI 18g drives. My problem is that the CMOS battery holder is snapped at the contact flat wire. Me solder?? No can do. When I boot up the server I get an error msg "NO VIDEO". This server is a true workhouse and I do really enjoy tinkering with it, all 4 drives have WXP sp2, 4 gb of memory and 2 Intel chips running at 1.2 gbps I think, so the Cmos problem prevents the system to run. Can I get someone to tell me how to repair the Cmos holder? 

Since then we've received one more response to Duff's question which is this comment from Jurriaan who works in the Netherlands:

Use a coin battery with PCB terminals. Soldering wires on these terminals is quite easy. After that connect the wires with the old battery holder. To avoid a short circuit you can pack the battery and terminals in a shrink tube sleeve or simple use insulation tape. Soldering directly on the batteries is dangerous, the battery will go dead or will explode (which is the same as kicking the bucket...)

Ask Our Readers - Isolating "training" network from "work" network (closing the loop)

Also last week we published some reader response to the following question from Alain:

Hi Mitch, thanks for continuing the very good WServerNews newsletter -- it always provides good tips. Can I ask you some advice on network setup? I want to extend my current small business network setup which works perfectly for my purposes to have a second "training" network setup so that trainees are not able to access my work network, but still have access to an application on the internet…

Alain graciously sent us this follow up comment yesterday to thank readers for their suggestions:

Hi Mitch, thank you for putting my query out to the world! I do appreciate the answers immensely! It looks like I will need to run two separate networks, as the most effective strategy then…. which doubles the connectivity cost and unfortunately impacts on the business case for the training. Thanks to everyone for the tips!

You're very welcome! And our thanks too as editors to all you readers out there who responded to Alain's question (and to all our Ask Our Readers questions) by sharing your expertise so other IT pros can benefit! Speaking of which, here is a new question submitted by a reader:

Ask Our Readers - Sharing files between Hyper-V host and Windows client (new question)

We received the following question from a reader named Geoff:
Thanks for your article:


Followed it and it worked -- have a Windows 10 Host and a Windows XP client. But after applying ransomware patch, the shared folders in the Windows 10 Host cannot be seen anymore by the virtual Windows XP, any advice you can give me to make this work again? tried recreating the shared folders but didn't work, Virtual WinXP can ping Windows 10 host, but when opening \\hostname of host\ or \\ip address of host\ , nothing. Would appreciate your advice.

Unfortunately I don't have anything set up in my lab at present to test this, so maybe a reader out there can suggest something that might help Geoff? Email me at [email protected]

Ask Our Readers: WServerNews has almost 100,000 subscribers worldwide. That's a lot of expertise to tap into. Do you need help with some issue or need advice on something IT-related? Got a question you'd like us to toss out to our readers to try and answer? Email us at [email protected]

From the mailbag

Let's now catch up with a few miscellaneous mail items that have come in to us from our readers over the last few weeks.

Back in March in Issue #1123 Impact of Continuous Delivery we talked about continuous delivery model for software and how this affects companies both large and small, and we linked this with Microsoft's new model for frequently releasing new versions of Windows 10 and considered the impact of this on business process models. A reader named Charley who works at Cisco sent us this insightful observation that relates to the Long-Term Servicing Branch (LTSB) version of Windows 10:

Using the LTSB of a product like Windows 10 on Microsoft Surface can have a very serious impact on organizations. Microsoft just propped up a notification about Surface device compatibility with Windows 10 Long-Term Servicing Branch (LTSB). Wait a minute…….we chose the Surface because it is a Microsoft product and we would not run into driver compatibilities or support issues related to hardware and using the LTSB allowed us to lock down the OS for security reason. This all came to a head when the latest April patch for Ransom ware would not install. Now they tell us!


Think long and hard about using the LTSB version………on a MICROSOFT product.

Recently in Issue #1132 Cat 1 Mouse 0 in the section titled "Win10 Creators Update snafu" I shared my own frustration with an error message I got after updating Windows 10 on one of our HP Envy laptops to Creators Update. It turns out that a few days after we published that issue an HP Employee replied to my question on the HP Support Forum and advised me to install the Microsoft Visual C++ Redistributable Packages for Visual Studio 2015 Update 3 on my machine using the following link:


After doing this and rebooting the error message went away, so problem solved--whew! But we did receive a number of reader comments relating either to the error message I got or to Creators Update and we decided to publish some of them here in case other readers can benefit:

Similar to the Windows 10 problem with the DLL file missing, I had a Windows 8.1 problem. The Windows Update happens, then rolls back. The DLL missing was one that I needed to run PHP. It turned out that VC Runtime 2015 failed to install. Everything that required the PHP executable failed as a result. This included syntax checker and web server. --Bernhard

I have a HP Envy which is about 9 months old -- i7, 8 gig ram, 250 gig SSD. Update went well but agree update does take some time to finish. Overall, update has been solid. If you have a number of HP Envy, would recommend trying updating another Envy to see if issue is common to your model or just to that laptop. --Tom

Not precisely the same problem you experienced but when one of my laptops upgraded to insider build 16193 there were several issues because dll's could not be found and I had to revert to the previous build. --David

Strange, but I have recently rebuilt a Probook 640 G1 with windows 10 and I have to load a bunch of drivers to resolve unknown devices in Device manager. One of the drivers I usually install is the Driveguard 5 from HP for the built in accellerator. This is when I noticed the error on restart. Solution is to uninstall the Driveguard from programs and features, and use the built in windows update to check for a driver for this device online ( device manager, right click unknown device, select update driver, select search internet for update, and let it find and install the accelerometer driver). --Wayne from Western Australia

I removed a working hard drive from a system that got hit with a voltage spike that took out the motherboard and power supply. The client provided me with a system he bought at a local store. It was very different. I added the drive to use to backup or transfer the profile later. The new system opened directly to Windows 10 desktop, showed BIOS and Windows directories as being 2 years old. Had the Run Windows from USB feature and missing Cortana. I avoided the implications of having a machine that should be in a school and not sold commercially and tried updating to current Creators version of Windows 10. I used the Microsoft Windows Update Installer available from download - it failed miserable and took a few hours to get it back to original again. I then activated Windows Update (there were no links in Control panel!) manually and was able to get the Anniversary Edition installed (Windows Update returned to the control panel). Windows Update asked if the user would like to be one of the first to receive the Creator's Update, so I tried again through regular download/install. it also failed like last time with a machine frozen while booting. I contacted the customer, told him to get a Microsoft certificate for his Windows. His receipt did not show Windows was part of the sale. He will threaten the shop that if he does not receive correct Windows Pro serial number with a certificate, he will report to Microsoft online. I hope a correct Pro serial number will fix this issue, if not, we can use the number to activate a fresh copy ISO from Microsoft's site. --Howard from Brazil

Finally, here's a miscellaneous tidbit from Tom Philo for you movie buffs out there:

If you go watch Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 near the very end of the movie there is a reference to Microsoft's Zune player.

Haha. Unfortunately Ingrid and I walked out of GOTG2 after about a half hour because the humor was starting to drag.

And now on to the British Airways IT disaster…   

Bad day for BA

Unless you've been living under a rock (or hate flying) you've probably heard something about the IT disaster that hit British Airways this weekend and caused misery for tens of thousands of customers of the famously friendly airline. We've been following this with intense interest as it touches on a number of areas of IT including datacenter design and management, business continuity and disaster recovery, high availability and fault tolerance, and possibly outsourcing as well. Below are some of the news stories we've been following as the events unfolded along with our own observations and questions. If you would like to add your own comments to this discussion of IT issues just email us at [email protected]

To begin with here are a few background news articles which may or not be relevant to the happenings of last weekend…

British Airways to replace IT workers with Indian recruits flown in on temporary visas (This is Money, October 2015)


Have you experienced IT job losses because of outsourcing? How has this affected your organization and your own job?

GMB takes concerns over British Airways IT outsourcing to MPs (Computer Weekly, January 2016)


Do you think that unionizing the IT profession can help prevent these kinds of disasters from happening?

Home Office ignores plight of BA techies as job offshoring looms (The Register, June 2016)


Interesting that Theresa May was the Secretary for the UK Home Office at the time BA outsourced their IT operations. I wonder whether she would have been voted in as Prime Minister if this disaster had happened earlier in her Home Office watch.

BA faces IT jobs protest over offshoring (Contractor UK, Feb 2016)


BA defended its decision to outsource IT operations by saying it was a "very common practice." Is that really the case? I thought I read somewhere that outsourcing IT is on the decline not the upswing.

Now let's look at the news as events unfolded last weekend…

British Airways cancels all flights from Gatwick and Heathrow due to IT failure (The Guardian)


British Airways faces huge compensation bill following IT crash as stranded passengers claim (The Mirror)


I wonder what kind of hoops customers have to jump through in the UIK in order to obtain the compensation they're legally entitled to by law when this sort of event happens. Have any readers done this in the past?

BA's 'global IT system failure' was due to 'power surge' (The Register)


Five questions for BA over IT crash (BBC)


The BBC reports that BA says "The root cause was a power supply issue which our affected our IT systems." It seems to me that the cause of the disaster couldn't have been a power surge but inadequate systems and/or procedures to handle the possibility of such a power surge happening, right?

British Airways could face £100m compensation bill over IT meltdown (The Guardian)


The Guardian quotes James Walker the chief executive of free flights compensation claim site Resolver as saying "This is not like an ash cloud or traffic controllers' strike that can't be predicted. The computer system breaking down is within its control." Do you think that's a fair statement given the complexity of the IT systems needed to support the operation of a large airline like BA?

British Airways flights are facing chaos for days after computer meltdown leaves more than 100k stranded (Independent.IE)


This article quotes Captain Stephen Wearing who has flown for BA for 29 years saying that last night was "the worst chaos I've ever seen". Do you think our overreliance on IT systems in our modern world is setting us up for even greater chaos?

British Airways boss 'tries to gag staff' over IT failure which hit 300,000 passengers after 'inexperienced (The Sun)


I'm not sure how reliable The Sun is for news, but I think it highly likely that IT staff are being pressured by BA's management to keep their mouths shut over all this.

Whistle-blower claims BA travel chaos was down to dodgy computer system - but 'bosses refused to fix it' (The Sun)


Another article from The Sun, but since the quoted source is anonymous I'm not sure if we should trust it.

BA boss 'won't resign' over flight chaos (BBC)


He won't have to resign, he'll get booted out for sure by shareholders pressuring BA's board of directors.

BA flights returning to normal after damaging IT collapse (Reuters via The Daily Star)


Did outsourcing cause the British Airways IT meltdown? (TNW)


The 64 million dollar question.

Commentary: British Airways has no excuse for the chaos at Heathrow airport (The Financial Times via Channel NewsAsia)


Anatomy of a very British Airways IT cockup (Ars Technica UK)


Ars Technica tries to go deep but rarely gets there IMO.

What went wrong in British Airways datacenter in May 2017? (UP2V)


This is a much better analysis article than Ars Technica. It's worth reading this article from start to finish. Here's a part that grabbed our attention:

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SEN), which manage the electricity distribution network in the area north of Heathrow where British Airways' headquarters are located, said its services were running as normal on Saturday morning. "The power surge that BA are referring to could have taken place at the customer side of the meter. SEN wouldn't have visibility of that," a spokesman said.

Also check out this part:

From the IT rumour mill. Allegedly, the staff at the Indian data centre were told to apply some security fixes to the computers in the data centre. The BA IT systems have two, parallel systems to cope with updates. What was supposed to happen was that they apply the fixes to the computers of the secondary system, and when all is working, apply to the computers of the primary system. In this way, the programs all keep running without any interruption. What they actually did was apply the patches to _all_ the computers. Then they shutdown and restarted the entire data centre. Unfortunately, computers in these data centres are used to being up and running for lengthy periods of time. That means, when you restart them, components like memory chips and network cards fail. Compounding this, if you start all the systems at once, the power drain is immense and you may end up with not enough power going to the computers -- this can also cause components to fail. It takes quite a long time to identify all the hardware that failed and replace it.

In conclusion, I certainly hope a full and independent investigation is done of this IT disaster and that the results of the investigation are made public so other large carriers can benefit. If you would like to comment on any of the above or have additional news about these events please email us at [email protected]

Send us your feedback

Got feedback about anything in this issue of WServerNews? Email us at [email protected]

Recommended for Learning

Security Challenges: Integrating Apple Computers into Windows Environments

Windows Management Experts (WME) says that "Apple Mac devices are growing in corporate popularity by the day, and it is up to Information Technology departments to make sure not only that these Mac devices utilize all of the resources in the environment but also that these devices are visible and managed. How can this be accomplished? Download this whitepaper to learn how!"



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NEW! - IT Pro Fitness Corner

Weightloss Tip - Reclining exercise bike

Some years ago when I needed to start losing weight I had to choose from different types of cardio machines. In the end I chose a reclining exercise bike because it was cheap and I could play online chess on my iPad while I exercised to keep from getting totally bored. I definitely rejected a treadmill because I'd heard of several people who had accidents falling off them. And while a stepmill would have been neat, it just wouldn't fit with the low ceiling in our basement where I exercise during the winter.

I've personally found that long, progressively intense cardio is the best way for me to lose weight because for some reason I'm just not hungry afterwards, so I get the double benefit of fat burned and fewer calories consumed the rest of the day. Weightlifting on the other hand while making me feel terrific also drives up my hunger so I tend to eat more when I do any heavy resistance training.

Disclaimer:  I hope this helps! I'm not a certified fitness professional or nutritionist so take any suggestions I make "as is" with a grain of salt and a heaping supply of your own judgment. And send me your feedback and any fitness tips of your own you might have by emailing me at [email protected]

Factoid of the Week

Last week's factoid and question was this:

The last words of Henry Royce, co-founder of Rolls-Royce, were: "I wish I’d spent more time, in the office." What are some other notable last words of famous people that have inspired, amused, or infuriated you?

Here are a couple of responses we received to this question:

Pancho Villa, Mexican revolutionary: "Don't let it end like this. Tell them I said something." --Don from Iowa, USA

Gertrude Stein's last words, quoted by Thornton Wilder: "What is the answer?" [Wilder was silent] "In that case, what is the question?" --Mary from California, USA

Rosebud. --Brian from Ohio, USA

And here's one more military acronym from a reader named Tom in response to the previous week's factoid/question:

Not sure which war this came from, most likely the Cold War: WOOT -- Waste of our Time. We actually had a server named that for 8 or so years  -- never knew what it was used for. The person who built it argued against creating it, and lost. Back then we could name our servers any name we wanted, so he named it WOOT.

Now let's move on to this week's factoid:

Fact: Motorists waste 29 hours every year using sat navs

Source: http://www.wservernews.com/go/e0g04nt0/

Question: What was the worst thing that ever happened to you when you relied on GPS to drive to some destination?

Email your answer to us at: [email protected]

Until next week, 

Mitch Tulloch


Admin Toolbox

Admin Tools We Think You Shouldn't Be Without

GOT ADMIN TOOLS or other software/hardware you'd like to recommend? Email us at [email protected]

NEW Veeam Availability Suite v10 supports any workload; virtual, physical or cloud on any infrastructure; private, managed or SaaS in multi-cloud and hybrid cloud environments. See more:


Advanced IP Scanner shows all network devices, gives you access to shared folders, provides remote control of computers (via RDP and Radmin), and can even remotely switch computers off:


AxCrypt is an open source file encryption program that integrates seamlessly with Windows to compress, encrypt, decrypt, store, send and work with individual files:


SlimDrivers not only detects when a driver needs updating, but also identifies the proper executable for your system and initiates the driver install automatically:



This Week's Tips

GOT TIPS you'd like to share with other readers? Email us at [email protected]

Windows - Understanding how updates are named

Moti Bani has a post on how you can secure your Bitlocker-enabled devices against a common attack vector, namely a Direct Memory Access/Side channel attack:Michael Niehaus has a helpful blog post that explains the naming convention Microsoft uses for software updates:


While you're at it be sure to read my recent interview with Michael on our Techgenix.com website:

Rebuilding MDT with PowerShell: An interview with Michael Niehaus


Security - Remove Tech Support Scam pop-up virus

MalwareTips has a detailed tip on how to fix your machine if it's become infected with adware that pops up messages asking you to call a phone number to fix your Windows or Apple computer:


Security - Report tech support scams to Microsoft

Have you been contacted by someone claiming to be from Microsoft and felt it was a scam? Report it to Microsoft here:


Events Calendar

Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC) on July 9-13, 2017 in Washington, D.C.


Microsoft Ignite on September 25-29, 2017 in Orlando, Florida


Add Your Event

PLANNING A CONFERENCE OR OTHER EVENT you'd like to tell our 100,000 subscribers about? Contact [email protected]

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You can now use Amazon WorkSpaces with Samsung Galaxy S8 and Samsung DeX

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'Deep Dive' into Office 365 PowerShell cmdlets: Groups

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Outlook Customer Manager now rolling out worldwide

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Tech Briefing


Tier to AWS Cloud Using Starwind Cloud VTL and Veeam (ms4u)


Weekend Reading: Amazon Aurora: Design Considerations for High Throughput Cloud-Native Relational Databases (All Things Distributed)



Unable to RDP to Azure VM From Hotel WiFi (250 Hello)


End to End SSL with Azure Application Gateway (Cloud Solution Architect)


Cloud computing

Zabbix- A Simpler way of Monitoring (Cloud That)


Azure AD Connect 1.1.524.0 brings a ton of new functionality to Hybrid Identity (The DirTeam.com)


Office 365

Product Review: Exclaimer Cloud -- Signatures for Office 365 (IT Pro Central)


How To Install AD FS 2016 For Office 365 -- Part 3 (250 Hello)


Windows Server

Leaked Token Handles Preventing RDS Session ID Reuse (Helge Klein)


PS without BS: Managing WSUS (Lee Stevens)


Other Articles of Interest

AWS data security comes down to native and third party tool choices

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And the next sexy technology is…Blockchain?

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IoT certifications land on data center admins’ to-do list

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Streamline cloud operations with Google automation tools

Cloud admins can choose from a number of tools to drive automation in Google Cloud Platform. Learn how managed instance groups, Deployment Manager and other options stack up.



WServerNews FAVE Links

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

GOT FUN VIDEOS or other fun links to suggest you'd like to recommend? Email us at [email protected]


Amazing Real Life Trick Shots

Texas-based trick shot group 'Dude Perfect' perform amzing and impressive trick shots with household ojects and everyday tasks:


Richard Browning Breaks New Record With Jet-Powered Suit

Inventor Richard Browning puts his jet engine-powered suit through its paces, beating his own record for speed and distance:


Will Tsai's Amazing Visual Magic

Will Tsai amazes the judges and audience of America´s Got Talent 2017 with his unique and incredible visual magic:


Cappucino Artist

Watch this talented 'cappucino artist' create a piece of art with espresso and steamed milk:


WServerNews - Product of the Week

Veeam User Group: online exclusive. 


Join Rick Vanover for this exclusive online event. Everything from product settings to whiteboard diagrams will be showcased in this interactive session. We’ll recap key initiatives from VeeamON 2017 and discuss tips and tricks specific to some of the new Veeam products. The agenda is informal, allowing you to drive the conversation.

Another great reason to attend: all participants will be entered in a raffle to win a $100 Amazon gift card.

Register to attend.

WServerNews - Editors

Mitch Tulloch is Senior Editor of WServerNews and is a widely recognized expert on Windows administration, deployment and virtualization. Mitch was lead author of the bestselling Windows 7 Resource Kit and has been author or series editor for almost fifty books mostly published by Microsoft Press. Mitch is also a ten-time recipient of Microsoft's Most Valuable Professional (MVP) award for his  outstanding contributions in support of the global IT pro community. Mitch owns and runs an information technology content development business based in Winnipeg, Canada. For more information see www.mtit.com.

Ingrid Tulloch is Associate Editor of WServerNews and was co-author of the Microsoft Encyclopedia of Networking from Microsoft Press. Ingrid is also manages research and marketing for our content development business and has co-developed university-level courses in Information Security Management for a Masters of Business Administration program.