Vol. 19, #7 - February 17, 2014 - Issue #967

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Implementing Wi-Fi in Enterprise Environments

  1. Editor's Corner
    • From the Mailbag
    • Implementing Wi-Fi in Enterprise Environments
    • Tip of the Week: Fixing Faxing in Windows 8.1
    • Recommended for Learning
    • Microsoft Virtual Academy
    • Quote of the Week
  2. Admin Toolbox
    • Admin Tools We Think You Shouldn't Be Without
  3. Events Calendar
    • Americas
    • Europe
    • Asia Pacific
  4. Webcast Calendar
    • MSExchange.org: Office 365 Online Conference
    • Register for Webcasts
  5. Tech Briefing
    • Windows Client
    • Windows Server
    • Windows PowerShell
    • SharePoint, Exchange, and Office
  6. Windows Server News
    • Clouds are more secure than traditional IT systems -- and here's why
    • Choosing a VDI hypervisor? Consider licensing and labor
    • Improving VM performance through proper disk selection
    • Top 10 enterprise desktop and Windows security stories of 2013
  7. WServerNews FAVE Links
    • #1 Hyper-V Backup
  8. WServerNews - Product of the Week
    • 3 Free Tools. 1 Easy Download. Active Directory Admin Simplified.

 

3 Free Tools. 1 Easy Download. Active Directory Admin Simplified.

SolarWinds trio of free tools for Active Directory Admin help you manage and remove computer and users from Active Directory, and allow you to add users in bulk. With these tools, you can scan Active Directory and optionally remove users and computers who have not logged in for a certain amount of time, or optionally remove computers that are over a certain number of days old. You can even create users in bulk using a CSV file and specify the attributes. These tools are certified with Windows 7 through a strategic relationship with Microsoft® and run on current Windows® versions.

Download your 3 Free tools here >

 

Editor's Corner

This week's newsletter is all about ensuring WiFi works reliably in enterprise environments such as office buildings, conference centers, warehouses, industrial workshops, and so on. Ensuring reliable WiFi can be a challenge in such environments for various reasons. But WiFi in the bedroom can also be challenging as this Dilbert comic illustrates:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200095242

I'll let you chew on that for a while...OK time to dig into our mailbag:

From the Mailbag

Here's a bit more feedback from readers concerning Issue #964 Remote Login to Desktop PCs and Issue #965 More Remote Login Solutions where we examined some different solutions for logging on to remote PCs. First, in the Mailbag section of Issue #966 Getting Management Buy-In for Information Security, a reader named Jeff had said:

Maybe you can do a "feature matrix" in one of your upcoming newsletters showing which product supports/controls/allows-control-from which platform/OS.

A reader named Mike emailed us to say:

I would second this thought.

Would any of our readers like to take this on and put together such a feature matrix? We'd be happy to publish it in our newsletter, just let us know :-)

Aiain from South Africa recommended the following:

This was one which I used to use for accessing any machine -- it does need to be installed on the machine you want to control, but once there, it works perfectly. A free -- open source solution that originally had some security issues, but was then adapted into so many different types of connectors, with different types of security:

RealVNC:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200143086

TightVNC:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200145351

Clients available for all types, including iPhone and Linux.

Also in the Mailbag section of Issue #966 Getting Management Buy-In for Information Security, a reader named Alan from Park City, Utah USA, asks the following question:

I need to set up two-factor remote access for a client. Is there any consensus on best products for this? The client is a very cost-sensitive non-profit organization. They would prefer USB drives as tokens, but also could live with cell-phone text message techniques.

We received only one answer to Alan's question, which was from a reader named Andrew:

DuoSecurity must be considered here. It is awesome, easy to use, supports both soft and hard tokens, and is free for up to 10 users.

http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200195211

We hope that helps. Do any other readers have suggestions that might help Alan? Email us at [email protected]

And now on to the main topic for this issue...

Implementing Wi-Fi in Enterprise Environments

Many large businesses and organizations have challenging RF (radio frequency) environments that make it difficult or near impossible to deploy WiFi networks (also called wireless local area networks or WLANs) that are fast and reliable.

Take your typical office building for example. Let's say you want to implement WiFi coverage across an entire floor where your company's employees work. Potential sources of interference from signal absorption and reflection might include:

Then there's the matter of the kinds of applications that users work with nowadays. Business WiFi networks today are expected to be able to carry data, multimedia, and even voice traffic. Only a few years ago when you were deploying a WiFi network for an organization, you only had to worry about coverage--ensuring that users could connect reliably from anywhere they were expected to work. Today however, you can't just focus on coverage when you design a WiFi network; you also need to design for density.

And yet businesses of all types and sizes continue deploying WiFi at an accelerating rate. Why? Because wireless networking offers great flexibility advantages over traditional wired networking. Take a warehouse for example. With all those metal shelves and electrically noise machinery, wouldn't it be simpler just to stick with wired networking? Not for today's warehouses where just-in-time inventory can make the difference between profit and loss. Wireless networking enables walkaround inventory to be used to keep accurate track of inventory using barcode scanners and similar devices. Having accurate inventory is crucial when large customers place orders because failure to deliver on time can result in penalties. And walkaround inventory is only feasible when networking is wireless.

The result of all this is that today's businesses depend heavily on their wireless networks to work properly. If the WiFi network goes down, the business is screwed! That's because for many businesses WiFi is no longer a niche component of their infrastructure but the very backbone of their network!

Meru Networks

I recently had a chance to talk with a company that has deployed a number of enterprise WiFi solutions using technology and products developed by Meru Networks. Traditional WiFi has evolved through a series of IEEE standards through 802.11a, 802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11n, and currently 802.11ac. Meru has followed a different approach however with hardware and software solutions that use single channel architecture with channel layering, intelligent network control traffic management, and comprehensive monitoring. Yeah yeah, I know, that sounds like typical vendor-speak. But what it means in practice is that Meru WLANs "just work" in places where past experience has shown WiFi networking to often be frustratingly unreliable.

Take a conference center for example. How many of you readers have gone to a conference where "free WiFi" is supposed to be available throughout the conference center? During lunch break you try to connect to the Internet to check your email. How many of you were unable to connect? And if you did connect, how long did it take you to download that 2 MB PDF attachment?

In contrast to this, check out this short list of some businesses and organizations where Meru has received a lot of kudos for deploying a wireless network that has worked far more effectively than 802.11n and 802.11ac solutions:

One solution I've heard about involved implementing Cisco VoIP over a Meru WLAN and it worked flawlessly. Another solution enabled users to hand off their iPhones and Android phones from their cellular network provider to the Meru WLAN with no interruption or loss of connectivity. For more information on Meru Networks and their products, visit their website:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200326086

Tips for implementing WLANs

Regardless whether you go with Meru or a vendor-based 802.11ac solution for your business WiFi, there are a few things you should pay attention to from the start:

Send us feedback

Have you deployed a WLAN solution for your business? Which vendor's solution did you go with, and why? Got any tips, pointers or gotchas that might help readers considering WLAN deployments? Let us know at [email protected]

Tip of the Week: Fixing Faxing in Windows 8.1

Last week we included a tip by reader Jeff Rodenkirch on fixing problems with shell extensions in Windows 8.1. This week we have another tip submitted by Jeff:

For those Luddites that are still using faxes: find a FXST30.dll from a Win7 machine. That file (in system32) will fix the broken fax printer in Win8.1.

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

Recommended for Learning

Windows 7 Resource Kit (Microsoft Press)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200404055

Windows 7 Inside Out, Deluxe Edition (Microsoft Press)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200407820

Windows 7 Administrator's Pocket Consultant (Microsoft Press)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200411555

Optimizing Windows 7 Pocket Consultant (Microsoft Press)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200415305

MCITP Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-685): Windows 7 Enterprise Desktop Support Technician: Windows 7 Enterprise Desktop Support Technician (Microsoft Press)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200419086

MCITP Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-686): Windows 7 Desktop Administrator (Microsoft Press)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200423164

MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-680): Configuring Windows 7 (Corrected Reprint Edition): Configuring Windows 7 (Microsoft Press)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200427101

Mastering Windows 7 Deployment (Sybex)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200431133

Microsoft Windows 7 Administration Instant Reference (Sybex)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200435039

Microsoft Windows 7 Administrator's Reference: Upgrading, Deploying, Managing, and Securing Windows (Syngress)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200438867

Microsoft Virtual Academy

February 18: SQL Azure in VM Role Jump Start

If you're wondering how to use Windows Azure as a hosting environment for your SQL Server virtual machines, join the experts as they walk you through it, with practical, real-world demos. SQL Server in Windows Azure VM is an easy and full-featured way to be up and running in 10 minutes with a database server in the cloud. Don't miss this chance to learn more about it. Register here!
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200443898

February 19: Virtualizing Your Data Center with Hyper-V and System Center Jump Start

Join this free online Jump Start and get the information you need to be the virtualization expert in your organization. Learn how to build your infrastructure from the ground up on the Microsoft stack, using System Center to provide powerful management capabilities. Explore Microsoft System Center 2012 R2 Virtual Machine Manager and VMware vSphere 5.5, with Microsoft virtualization experts Symon Perriman and Matt McSpirit, who are also VMware Certified Professionals. Don't miss this informative session! Register here.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200448086

Quote of the Week

"Always acknowledge a fault. This will throw those in authority off their guard and give you an opportunity to commit more." - Mark Twain

Note to subscribers: If for some reason you don’t receive your weekly issue of this newsletter, please notify us at [email protected] and we’ll try to troubleshoot things from our end.

 

Admin Toolbox

Admin Tools We Think You Shouldn't Be Without

SolarWinds free NTFS Permissions Analyzer for Active Directory - get a complete hierarchical view of the effective permissions & access rights for a specific file folder or share drive. Download today.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392201711367

With Veeam, you can sleep knowing that your data’s under control, your backups are fast, and if a VM goes down or someone needs a file right away, recovery is just a few clicks away.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392201714211

Backblaze is the easiest online backup for you and your business. Get all your machines backed up, painlessly. Secure. Fast. Offsite. http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392624110522

Microsoft Office 365 has become an option for organizations looking to move content – particularly Exchange – to the cloud. Learn about the capabilities of Office 365 and get ready to make the move.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392205496709 

Virtual Router is a free, open source software based router for Windows PCs that lets users wirelessly share any internet connection:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392201716961


Events Calendar

Americas

Lync Conference 2014 on February 18-20, 2014 at The Aria in Las Vegas, Nevada
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200455039

SharePoint Conference 2014 on March 3-6, 2014 at The Venetian in Las Vegas, Nevada
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200456820

Microsoft Dynamics Convergence 2014 on March 4-7, 2014 in Atlanta, Georgia
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200458930

Microsoft Exchange Conference (MEC 2014) on March 30-April 2, 2014 in Austin, Texas
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200461226

Microsoft Build Developer Conference (Build 2014) on April 2-4, 2014 in San Francisco, California
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200464664

TechEd North America on May 12-15, 2014 in Houston, Texas
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200467148

Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC 2014) in July, 2014 in Washington, D.C.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200469117

Microsoft SQL Server PASS Summit 2014 on November 4-7, 2014 in Seattle, Washington
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200471164

Europe

European SharePoint Conference on May 5-8, 2014 in Barcelona, Spain
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200475664

Asia Pacific

TechEd New Zealand on September 9-12, 2014 in Auckland, New Zealand
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200478070

Add your event

PLANNING A CONFERENCE OR OTHER EVENT you'd like to tell our 95,000 subscribers about? Contact [email protected]

 

Webcast Calendar

MSExchange.org: Office 365 Online Conference

All from the convenience of your office, on March 6, 2014

This unique, online conference is limited to 1,000 participants, so register today!

Register for the online conference here.

Register for Webcasts


Add your Webcast

PLANNING A WEBCAST you'd like to tell our subscribers about? Contact [email protected]

 

Tech Briefing

Windows client

Next 4 Windows 8.1 Useful Hotkeys and Hidden Features (CanITPro)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200524351

Step-By-Step: Windows 8.1 Start Screen Customization via PowerShell (CanITPro)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200528086

 

Windows Server

Step-By-Step: Creating a Work Folders Test Lab Deployment in Windows Server 2012 R2 (CanITPro)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200531570

Using PowerShell to manage WDS in Windows Server 2012 R2 (Deployment Research)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200535101

 

Windows PowerShell

Step-By-Step: Harnessing PowerShell to Build A New Active Directory Forest (CanITPro)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200553648

Step-By-Step: Deploying PowerShell Web Access (CanITPro)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200556930

Top Five 2013 PowerShell Scripts in Script Center Repository (Hey, Scripting Guy! Blog)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200560242

 

SharePoint, Exchange and Office

Missing E-mails In Outlook 2013 With Office 365 Or Outlook.com (Jorge's Quest for Knowledge)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200564305

Start 2014 With the Right Exchange Tools (MSExchange.org)
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200567914


Windows Server News

Clouds are more secure than traditional IT systems -- and here's why

Security concerns are a big factor holding back many IT pros from embracing cloud computing, but could a cloud environment actually be more secure than traditional IT systems? Access this exclusive tip to learn about a cloud security report that shows the cloud may be more secure than you think.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200572492

Choosing a VDI hypervisor? Consider licensing and labor

When evaluating your hypervisor options for VDI, it is essential to carefully analyze your organization’s VDI requirements to ensure you get the most from your investment. Inside this guide, explore the technical, financial, and organizational considerations for selecting a hypervisor.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200576226

Improving VM performance through proper disk selection

Virtualization admins looking to enhance virtual machine performance often overlook key elements that can help them achieve this goal – I/O and disk storage. Inside this exclusive resource, discover why you should invest time in optimizing your disk operations and learn how to effectively evaluate your options.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200579914

Top 10 enterprise desktop and Windows security stories of 2013

Enterprise IT desktop trends surrounding endpoint security management, mobility, BYOD and more continued to evolve over the past year, making 2013 an eventful year for IT security. Inside, explore a roundup of the top 10 Windows security stories your peers found most valuable last year.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200584180

 

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]

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Huge, basketball-sized balls of ice have been washing up on the shore of Lake Michigan.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200588383

A huge avalanche descends upon the small hamlet of Moos in Passeier Valley, South Tyrol. Luckyly, no one was harmed.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200592180

Steam locomotive 'Red Arrow' in a race versus 'Iron Shark.' Who will end up with the trophy?
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200596226

A crow solves a problem that requires eight seperate stages that must be completed in a specific order.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200600414

Costumed and enthusiastic attendees from all over the World come to this delightful blend of ballroom dancing, live music, stage shows, steam machinery and circus.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1392200604617

 

WServerNews - Product of the Week

3 Free Tools. 1 Easy Download. Active Directory Admin Simplified.

SolarWinds trio of free tools for Active Directory Admin help you manage and remove computer and users from Active Directory, and allow you to add users in bulk. With these tools, you can scan Active Directory and optionally remove users and computers who have not logged in for a certain amount of time, or optionally remove computers that are over a certain number of days old. You can even create users in bulk using a CSV file and specify the attributes. These tools are certified with Windows 7 through a strategic relationship with Microsoft® and run on current Windows® versions.

Download your 3 Free tools here >

 

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 from Microsoft Press and has published hundreds of articles for IT pros. Mitch is also a seven-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 Head of Research for our content development business and has co-developed university-level courses in Information Security Management for a Masters of Business Administration program.