Clustering: What exactly is a File Share Witness and when should I use one?

Customers ask from time to time: “What is a File Share Witness (FSW)?” Sometimes they’ve worked with prior versions of clustering and don’t know what a FSW is, or that the option exists. The next question asked is usually: “When should we use one?” Before going into that, I’ll review some subtle differences between legacy… Read more

Becoming an Xperf Xpert: The Slow Boot Case of the NetTCPPortSharing and NLA Services

So now that you are in the loop on the XPERF greatness, let’s look at a real world example of how XPERF can help us optimize boottimes.  (For those of you that missed the XPERF memo, go back and read Mark’s post) When we first started looking at this client laptop, he was getting to… Read more

Slow Boot Slow Logon (SBSL), A Tool Called XPerf and Links You Need To Read

For the last 6 months I’ve been saying I was going to write a series of posts around the topics of slow boot slow logon (SBSL) and how to use Xperf, but stuff kept coming up. While I kept missing the boat some other awesome engineers totally ate my lunch on this topic and posted… Read more

A Global Enterprise … in your basement?

In case you haven’t heard, we’re hard at work on the next release of Windows Windows Server 2012 – Windows 8 – As an IT Pro, you have to continually learn new things. A challenge many of us in IT face when a product is released/updated is “how to learn the new product.” Additionally, in… Read more

Best Practices for Implementing Schema Updates or : How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Forest Recovery

Note:  This is general best practice guidance for implementing schema extensions, not the testing of their functionality.  There may be some additional best practices around design and functionality of schema extensions that should be considered.  Understand that the implementation of a schema extension may well succeed, but the functionality around the extension may not behave… Read more

MCM: So You Want to Be a Active Directory Master, eh?

Back in February 2012, I was lucky enough to take part in the Windows 2008 R2 Directory Services Masters class and I promised that I would blog about my experience. Consequently, this will probably turn into another series as I wouldn’t do it any justice by only writing one entry about it.   Introduction For… Read more

Roaming AD Clients, with an Updated Script

  Three months ago I posted some information on AD Sites, Subnets and Roaming Clients. The heart of the blog was a PowerShell script that collected and collated netlogon.log files across all Domain Controllers in the forest to report a list of hostnames and IP addresses that have authenticated from IP addresses with no corresponding… Read more

How to Track the Who, What, When and Where of Active Directory Attribute Changes – Part II (The Case of the Mysteriously Modified UPN)

Hello, Ray Zabilla and Rick Bergman again. As promised in our previous post on this topic we will go into the details of how we created the script, the challenges we had during testing and what final code looks like. We are even so generous that we are going to share the scripts with you… Read more

DHCP, Dynamic DNS, and DCs: How about Some PowerShell to Spice Up a Mind-Numbing Topic?

  If the title of this blog hasn’t already put you off, you’re probably interested in the interaction between Microsoft DNS and DHCP services. Specifically, you should understand how Microsoft DHCP servers can be configured to dynamically register A and PTR records in DNS on behalf of their clients. The default behavior of a Microsoft… Read more