Spamming for computer equipment?

Sometimes I read spam email before I delete it, just to see if anyone is getting more inventive. The recent trend is to claim to be from the FBI and to assure me that they’ve cleared my transactions with the foreign government. I got a new one today, though. All this person wants, to release…

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Active Directory Management Pack: which ones to import

The latest Active Directory Management Pack package includes management packs for monitoring Windows 2000 Server, Windows Server 2003, and Windows Server 2008. Each server version has a .Discovery management pack and a .Monitoring management pack. You may decide that, since you’re only monitoring Windows Server 2003 (for example), you won’t bother importing any of the…

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Authoring management packs

Working on management pack guides, my attention is generally on how you can use the management packs we create at Microsoft. Next week, however, I’m attending a daylong workshop on authoring management packs. I’m hoping to learn a lot (unless it all goes over my head!). But if I didn’t have the opportunity of this…

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ReadMe vs. Guide

You might notice in the management pack guide library that some guides are quite extensive (like Active Directory) and some are a single webpage with “ReadMe” in the name (like FRS). You might also notice in the installation folder for some management packs that there are two documents: a guide and another that has MPAdd…

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The speed of moving data

I’m clearing out some of the blog posts I’ve clipped over the years and came across one that I saved when I was working on DPM. Jonathan Schwartz’s article on how long it takes to move a petabyte of data caught my attention because it related to the DPM issue of when you might prefer…

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MP guides online: a question for you

This is a question about the root page for the two management pack guide libraries (operating system guides and server guides). All of the guides are listed in the left navigation pane, beneath the parent page: In addition, when you click the parent page itself, the guides are listed and linked on that page: The…

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An operating system, a horse, and transparency

Catching up on my Microsoft-related blog feeds this morning, I counted at least a dozen blogs announcing the new Windows 7 blog — some rah-rah posts, some just passing it on, some speculating as to how much information the blog will actually provide, plus some conversations on the pros and cons of transparency. Coincidentally, last…

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Correction to knowledge for SDK SPN Registration alert

Thanks to a sharp-eyed customer, an error in the resolution procedure for alert “SDK SPN Registration” has been identified. The resolution is below, with the error and change in bold: Current:  You can use SetSPN.exe to register the SPNs for the SDK service. Here are the commands that you need to execute using an account…

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Change control: content preview

The next revision of the Operations Guide for Ops Manager will include an expanded section on management packs. We’ve added some procedures (both GUI and script) and some conceptual information. Here’s a preview from the management pack lifecycle topic: Best Practices for Change Control The following are some best practices to follow when managing Operations…

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OT: blogs from the past

I’ve really enjoyed the blog WW1: Experiences of an English Soldier which posts Harry Lamin’s letters during WWI, each exactly 90 years from when they were written. The blog format, parcelling out the letters in real time + 90, makes the reading experience seem more genuine than the same letters packaged all at once in…

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Support for Windows Server 2008

I know many of you have been waiting anxiously eagerly for management packs for Windows Server 2008. The support statement has been released and now we can start publishing them to the Catalog. Be sure to read Clive’s post carefully, he calls out some important information that you’ll want to be aware of.

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Zune and Pinnacle Video Transfer

I’m not a hardcore gadget junkie, although I’ve bought plenty that I never really use…maybe a semi-junkie. Most of my gadgets are from Woot because at 10 p.m. pacific time when I refresh their site, it’s really easy to convince myself that I have to have that (whatever it is). My most recent impulse was…

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That pesky admin password

Most everyone has heard some of the stories about the frustrations of providing tech support. Here’s a fun one that Help writers will appreciate: My friend Duane was on duty in the main lab on a quiet afternoon. He noticed a patron sitting in front of one of the workstations with his arms across his…

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Replacing my hard drive

Part of me had been dreading this day. Once I had thought my 30 GB hard drive was spacious; then I acknowledged a bit of crowding by adding an external USB drive; but finally I had to admit that C: was just too small – I kept running out of sufficient free space to run…

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MP guide library complete

Last month, I announced that we’d started adding Ops Manager 2007 management pack guides to our online TechCenter. I’m relieved happy to let you know that the guides for Windows operating systems and technologies and the guides for server products are all online now. If there’s a 2007 management pack (from Microsoft) that is missing,…

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Ceiling fan: summer

I know the direction of the ceiling fan is supposed to make a difference — one way in cool weather to circulate the heat, and the other way in hot weather to provide cooling. But each spring and fall, I have to look it up because I am never certain if I remembered to set…

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Management pack guides online

The Management Pack Guide library is now live on TechNet. About half (23) of the Operations Manager 2007 guides are available in the library now, with the rest to be added over the next few weeks. The guides are organized into Operating Systems & Technologies and Server Products for easier browsing. I almost forgot to add…we’ve included…

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News on the SP1 management packs

I posted last month about the “missing” management pack guides for the management packs that were included with SP1, and finally have progress to report. As I stated, our goals were to: Make the guides available online – and I hope to have an update post on that goal very soon! Update the guides with…

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Version numbers of management packs (pt 2)

Previously, I learned what management packs version numbers mean, but that will be changing in the near future. Coming soon, the part of the version number that was previously tied to the version number of Operations Manager (6.0.6278.22) will be the version number of the management pack, and the part that was the management pack…

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Adding change logs to management pack guides

If you’ve downloaded a recently updated management pack for Ops Mgr 2007, such as the SQL 2000/2005 MP, you might have noticed something new in the accompanying guide. We’ve begun adding lists of the specific changes made to the updated MP. And as a subsequent update is released, we’re adding the new changes while still…

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Tuning tips

I was looking for more specific guidance on tuning Ops Manager for a customer and found a great set of posts on this Operations Manager blog, so I thought I’d share: OpsMgr by Example: Tuning Management Packs Configuring Baselines Pt. 1 Configuring Baselines Pt.2 The AD Management Pack Monitoring Web Applications The Exchange Management Pack…

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System Center Content Search

I’m not a gadget-y sort of person. I mean, I like gadgets, but I’ve grown wary of them (both offline and on) because so often they’re a disappointment — either they don’t deliver or I don’t really have a use for them. But recently I saw a presentation on a gadget that delivered the exact…

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SP1 management packs: where are the guides?

Most of our management packs are released to the download center (via the Ops Manager Catalog) with a guide included. When we released Ops Manager 2007 Service Pack 1, it included a number of management packs with it, but no guides, leading a number of you to ask us: “Where are the guides?” And the…

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Subtle improvement to management pack installation

I’m thrilled with this change, even though it’s just a few words. Previously, the .msi files for management packs used just the product/technology name, which resulted in a nice default folder organization like this: System Center Management Packs Exchange Server 2003 SQL Server 2005 But the name string also resulted in a dialog box that…

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How not to write a user manual

I have to disagree with Tony Soper’s admiration for the Pong user instructions: “Insert quarter Ball will automatically serve Avoid missing ball for high score” Tony and I worked together on the same team, so he’s used to my contrariness. I don’t object to calling Pong’s instructions “succinct”, but I just don’t think they’re useful….

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