Vol. 17, #12 - March 16, 2012 - Issue #871

Windows Server "8" Beta

  1. Editor's Corner
    • From the Mailbag
    • Windows Server "8" Beta
    • Tip of the Week
    • Recommended for Learning
    • Quote of the Week
  2. Admin Toolbox
    • Admin Tools We Think You Shouldn't Be Without
  3. Webinars & Seminars
    • Conferences, Expos and Other Events
    • Upcoming Microsoft Webcasts
    • Upcoming VMware Webcasts
    • Upcoming O'Reilly Webcasts
    • Cisco Events
    • Oracle Events
  4. Tech Briefing
    • Windows Server 8: 8 Key Facts
    • Hands on with Windows Server 8 beta
    • Installing Windows Server 8 & SQL Server 2012
    • Installing, configuring and managing Hyper-V Server "8" Beta
    • Updating Integration Services in Windows Server "8"
  5. Windows Server News
    • New IT business model could spark a cloud revolution
    • Guide to calculating ROI from VDI
    • IT pros mix VDI with BYOD to simplify device management
    • Windows Server certification FAQ
  6. WServerNews FAVE Links
    • This Week's Links We Like. Tips, Hints And Fun Stuff.
  7. WServerNews - Product of the Week
    • Free Tool - Real-time Bandwidth Monitor for Sub Second Device Polling and Interface Monitoring

 

New Free Tool - Real-time Bandwidth Monitor for Sub Second Device Polling and Interface Monitoring

Real-Time Bandwidth Monitor, SolarWinds? latest and greatest free tool, allows you to monitor interfaces on your network, see how much bandwidth is in use, or how much is traffic is currently on the interfaces. Now you can poll your interface as frequently as every half second. Set critical and warning thresholds to instantly see when usage is out of bounds. Monitoring a troublesome interface has never been so easy!

Download Real-Time Bandwidth Monitor

 

Editor's Corner

From the Mailbag

The February 27 issue Seriously SSD continues to bring in responses from readers. My guess is that WServerNews readers like it when their PCs are blazingly fast, and SSDs are certainly a key technology for making this happen. Here are a couple of highlights:

Gordon from Montana made a good point that SSDs can be quieter than HDDs:

The client wanted a silent server in a small office for herself and 4 remote users to run QuickBooks and MS Office. She loves the Dell Optiplex 990 with RAID1 128Gb SSDs. It meets all of her requirements, the awful fan noises are minimal and the users say that compared to the conventional SATA drive WS2003server before the new WS2008R2 server is FAST!

Rene from Oklahoma asked for recommendations concerning DoD wiping of SSDs:

I am wondering if you have any recommendations to destroy data on an SSD in accordance to DoD before we send them to recycle. We have a very strong degasser that use that will not only wipe the HD completely, but will destroy the electronic in the boards. SDD drive will not work in this. This is quick for our mass number of computer turnover.

That's a great question so I asked some of my colleagues in the hardware and enterprise communities about it. See the Tip of the Week section of this issue for a few of the answers I received.

Windows Server "8" Beta

I've been evaluating the public beta release of Windows Server "8" and wanted to briefly share my impressions along with some links where you can learn more about the new features in WS8. But first, let's check out XKCD for an oldie but goodie, namely the comic about what happens when the author of the Windows file copy dialog visits some friends:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331802099663

The New Server Manager

I have to say right off the bat that I really like the new Server Manager in WS8. When you log on to your new server, you're presented with the Dashboard page of Server Manager, which looks similar to the below screenshot depending on which server roles you have installed:

Some of the things I like about the new Server Manager include the following:

For more on the new Server Manager, see Brian Posey's latest series of articles on WindowsNetworking.com:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331802265336

The Metro User Interface

I initially thought it would be a challenge getting used to the new Metro desktop interface, but after the initial shock of "Hey, where's my Start button?" and after playing around with Metro a bit, I've decided I love it. But here's an important tip: learn how to use the keyboard shortcuts for the new UI. For example, instead of moving the mouse pointer all the way to the bottom left of your screen to display the Start popup, just press CTRL+ESC to quickly toggle between the desktop which shows Server Manager and the Metro Start interface shown here:

Here's another tip for using Metro: the keyboard shortcut Windows Logo Key + F is your friend, because it opens a search pane on the right side of your Metro UI that lets you quickly find files, apps and settings by typing some text. Since I use the Start menu search box in Windows 7 whenever I need to launch a program or configure a Control Panel setting, being able to do this in Metro is great even though it requires a bit of adjustment i.e. first you have to select whether you're searching for apps, files or settings.

Where to Learn More

Below are my top links for quickly learning what you need to know about Windows Server "8". Be sure also to check out the Tech Briefing section in this newsletter for some additional reviews and blog links.

Send Me Feedback

Have you had a chance yet to try out the Beta release of Windows Server "8" yet? What do you like about it? What don't you like? Send me your feedback at [email protected]

Tip of the Week

A reader asked me the following question:

I am wondering if you have any recommendations to destroy data on an SSD in accordance to DoD before we send them to recycle. We have a very strong degasser that use that will not only wipe the HD completely, but will destroy the electronic in the boards. SDD drive will not work in this. This is quick for our mass number of computer turnover.

I asked some of my colleagues in the hardware and enterprise communities concerning this and basically received two kinds of answers. First, if you want to recycle them, you should ask the SSD vendor how best to erase all data from the drive in a way that meets DoD standards. The vendor's SSD Secure Erase function may be sufficient or it may not, but either way the vendor would be the best one to advise.

If you're not concerned about recycling them however, you should just have them physically destroyed using an industrial hard drive disintegrator. This article titled "Eliminating Data from Solid State Hard Drives" provides some recommendations on how to do this in accordance with NSA requirements:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331802871425

Here is some additional reading on the subject of erasing SSDs in case you're still interested:

Finally, check out the Fave Links section of this issue for some more ways of destroying SSDs, but be careful!

Recommended for Learning

Two books from Cisco Press are reviewed this issue:

Implementing Cisco Unified Communications Voice over IP and QoS (Cvoice) Foundation Learning Guide: (CCNP Voice CVoice 642-437) (4th Edition) is another good certification guide from Cisco Press that doubles as a handy reference for UC/VoIP professionals. UC is not for the faint of heart. Implementations of UC can be complex as they can involve numerous infrastructure, service, application and endpoint components. The goal is simple to express: unify all forms of electronic communications and messaging into one integrated, easy-to-use system. The route there however can be quite complex, from gateways to quality of service. I miss POTS sometimes.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331803150376

Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise (UCCE) from Cisco Press is a fairly specialized book that will probably appeal only to large enterprises that have deployed UCCE platforms such as UICM, UCM, CVP, IP IVR and other peripheral application servers to deliver intelligent contact routing, network-to-host telephony integration (CTI), call handling, and multichannel contact management over your IP infrastructure. That's a wide range of technologies, so the book does well to focus mainly on the core technologies you need to know about. Now if only I could use call flow scripting on my home phone to block all those pesky telemarketers!
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331803189057

Quote of the Week

"What I have learned over the years is that I do need to constantly make little shifts to continue making progress. I do use a lot of the same exercises over and over again, but even then I switch up thinkgs like the angle, my hand position or grip. That becomes more important the longer you've been training and the more progress you make relative to your starting point, because new gains will always be increasingly harder to come by. The only way to keep growing is to find new ways to shock the muscles all the time beyond just going heavier." -- Four-time Mr. Olympia Jay Cutler in Muscular Development Magazine

That's another great tip from a bodybuilder that's just as applicable for consultants, system integrators and other IT businesses. If you're a business owner or self-employed trainer or consultant, don't let yourself get into a rut. If you want to continue making progress with growing your business, experiment and try making different changes to your business processes, practices and tactics. Find new ways to shock your business into growing, improve your skills, and manage your time effectively. Keep learning and experimenting if you want to be successful and continue to grow your business.

Contact the Editor

Save this newsletter so you can refer back to it later for tips, tools and other resources you might need to do your job or troubleshoot some problem you're dealing with!

Forward this newsletter to a friend or colleague who might find the tips and tools in it helpful for performing their job!
Send me feedback if you have comments or suggestions concerning anything in this newsletter: [email protected]

Cheers, Mitch Tulloch
Twitter: @mitchtulloch
Facebook: mitchtulloch
Website: mtit.com

 

Admin Toolbox

Admin Tools We Think You Shouldn't Be Without

rDirectory's free Community Edition web-based directory deploys in minutes and immediately allows users to search Active Directory data anywhere, anytime, from any computer.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331806179700

Make group work a breeze with the Group Project Toolkit and Office Web Apps:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331803445648

Microsoft Premier Field Engineer Jeff Stokes shares his list of tools he finds useful in troubleshooting:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331803476820

 

Webinars & Seminars

Conferences, Expos and Other Events

March 26 - 29, 2012 - SQL Server 2012 Launch Conference and Expo at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331803585135

April 16-20, 2012 - Microsoft Management Summit 2012 is where skilled IT professionals can meet to increase their technical expertise through hands-on training, breakout sessions and interacting with industry leaders in desktop and device management, datacenter, and cloud technologies:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331803652500

Upcoming Microsoft Events and Webcasts

Sign up for these and other Microsoft events and webcasts at: 
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331803760099

Upcoming VMware Webcasts

Sign up these and other VMware webcasts at:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331803807886

Upcoming O'Reilly Webcasts

Sign up for these and other O'Reilly webcasts at:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331803895045

Upcoming Cisco Events

Browse the Cisco Corporate Events Calendar to find Cisco at events, trade shows and conferences around the world:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331804238311

Upcoming Oracle Events

Browse the Oracle Events page to find in-person events and live webcasts for your location:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331804277436

Would you like to list your IT event, webcast, or seminar in this section? Contact Michael Vella, the WSN Account Manager at [email protected]

 

Tech Briefing

Windows Server 8: 8 Key Facts

Paul McDougall of InformationWeek explains how Windows Server "8" has important changes for enterprises working with virtualization, automation, and private clouds:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331804547217

Hands on with Windows Server 8 beta

Jonathan Hassell of ComputerWorld suggests that the Metro user interface doesn't work well for a server OS, but other than that he has no major complaints:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331804575656

Installing Windows Server 8 & SQL Server 2012

A step by step walkthrough by Microsoft MVP Aaron Bertrand: 
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331804595993

Installing, configuring and managing Hyper-V Server "8" Beta

Matthijs ten Seldam, a Partner Technology Advisor for Microsoft Netherlands, shows you how:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331804609772

Updating Integration Services in Windows Server "8"

Ben Armstrong a.k.a. the "Virtual PC Guy" demonstrates how to do this in his blog:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331804621619

 

Windows Server News

New IT business model could spark a cloud revolution

The last decade has been marked by CIO cost conservatism. So when cloud computing burst onto the scene, it was no surprise that those CIOs wanted to move internal IT applications to the cloud to save a buck. But while scalable pricing and flexibility may motivate cloud adoption, a new app-sharing cloud service model could trigger a revolution. Learn more about this model in this expert tip.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331804766241

Guide to calculating ROI from VDI

VDI can decrease hardware costs, increase end user productivity and mobility, and provide more flexibility for applications and operating systems. But to decide whether implementing VDI will be worth the price tag, you need to determine the potential return on investment. Check out this guide for resources on VDI costs, ways to implement VDI in a cost-effective way and important factors that go into ROI calculation.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331804795935

IT pros mix VDI with BYOD to simplify device management

IT pros that support BYOD have too many devices to manage -- but desktop virtualization could solve the problem by freeing IT from hardware management. Learn more in this exclusive article. http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331804809911

Windows Server certification FAQ

The field of IT is growing as a highly competitive work environment. If you're working with Windows Server, there are ways to get ahead and ascend the ladder. Use this resource to find out information about what Microsoft certification can do for you and your career, what exams to take and, more.
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331804821379

 

WServerNews FAVE Links

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

One way of decommissioning SSDs would be how they did it in Terminator 2:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331804919489

A colleague actually suggested using home-made thermite to decommission SSDs, but don't try this at home!
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331804950714

A Russian cat has mastered the art of sign language and is using it to ask for food:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331804965299

Rio's 2011 Carnival gets "tilt-shifted" in the stunning short film "The City of Samba":
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331804981528

The World's first helicopters - the good, the bad and the dangerous! Archival footage from 1921 to 1950:
http://www.wservernews.com/go/1331805019195

 

WServerNews - Product of the Week

New Free Tool - Real-time Bandwidth Monitor for Sub Second Device Polling and Interface Monitoring

Real-Time Bandwidth Monitor, SolarWinds? latest and greatest free tool, allows you to monitor interfaces on your network, see how much bandwidth is in use, or how much is traffic is currently on the interfaces. Now you can poll your interface as frequently as every half second. Set critical and warning thresholds to instantly see when usage is out of bounds. Monitoring a troublesome interface has never been so easy!

Download Real-Time Bandwidth Monitor

 

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.