System Center Advisor

I’m not very sure if I’ve talk about this sometime back but with the latest updates they have caried out to the product I wanted to bring this software back to your attention. System Center Advisor is a “Free” (Yes now it is free folks Smile ) cloud service that enables IT pros to proactively avoid problems from server configuration issues. Apart from that for the customer who deploy System Center Advisor get the ability to retrieve reports about the servers current status and also historical configuration data about the servers. Microsoft pools their knowledgebase about the best practices and compare it against your servers to advise you in case if you have misconfigured the servers.

advisoroverview

The above picture gives clear idea about the functionality. Steps require for System Center Advisor setup are as follows,

1. Go to www.systemcenteradvisor.com and register yourself and create an account.

2. Downlaod the agent software and unique certificate.

3. Select a machine as a gateway to connect with Microsoft cloud service an send and receive server related information behalf of the machines in the DMZ zones.

4. Install the agent to all the servers you want to monitor and mention the gateway server name during the setup.

Simple as that you get the System Center Advisor to startup and do it’s magic Smile. Below is a screenshot of my System Center Advisor portal,

image

Recently Microsoft announced System Center Advisor can be linked with System Center Operations Manger as well. what this means is if you have in house SCOM deployed you have a way of getting System Center Advisor ongoing assessment of configuration information to the SCOM console. To get this working you need to have SCOM 2012 SP1 with Update Rollup2 installed in your environment. You can download the connector from here.

Note: System Center Advisor overview picture retrieved from TechNet page.

Hyper-V PowerShell Script Cookbook

In my public speaking and in user groups I always highlight the IT Professional the importance and the value of PowerShell. It’s THE future for Microsoft and non Microsoft techies along the way. In Windows Server 2012 we have more than 2400 PowerShell cmdlets to show how serious Microsoft about the PowerShell.

For HYPER-V fans we have been taken whole new level by “Gershon Levitz” By introducing TechNet Wiki article in HYPER-V PowerShell script book page. This is a collection of PowerShell samples which we can use for our day to day task on HYPER-V related work. Most of the PS scripts has been categorize as,

  • Virtual Machine
  • Virtual Hard Disk
  • Network Virtualization
  • Virtual Switch
  • Additional Scripts

My 2 cents suggestion is keep this site in your favorite bookmarks and refer it and also share your sample scripts to the community. If you want to know all the HYPER-V related PS commands and usage you can refer to this link.

ITPro session for April month 2013

This month I’ve been discussing about the trend of hybrid hyper-visor movement by customers and why they tend do that. Apart from that we’re now in the next level of virtualization where most organization who adopt virtualization trying to find feasible solutions to manage their environment.

During that discussion one key thing being highlight was ‘What are the key characteristics of Private Cloud” This is very important since most of the customer has the assumption as soon as they have a hypervisor and console to manage it means Private Cloud.

Then we focus on what is really the total management solutions should be like and how System Center 2012 come into the picture to fill the gap. The most interesting part is most VMware guys in the room didn’t know the capability and how strong is “HYPER-V Replica” we had a good time discussion about the feature compare with VMware offered paid solutions Smile

Some of the moments captured during the session.

Windows XP Support has been counting down now with less than 365 days to go

Microsoft has once again officially announced they will end the support for Windows XP on April 08th 2014. Right now they are providing extend support with security fixes. If you’re a corporate user with hundreds of Windows XP computers now it’s not that too late for the planning and drop the decade old Operating System and catch with Windows 7 or Windows 8.

In my personal opinion I believe this is a fair period Microsoft given for Windows XP world. This deadline support message has been routing around the world for many years. So there is no way of end users complaining about this anymore Smile More information about this deadline can be found here.

As IT Pro now it’s your time to brush up quickly your knowledge on how to migrate applications upgrade OS with minimum disruptions to the production environment. You can find plethora of tools, guides, videos on Microsoft web site for this.

New DNS MP for SCOM 2012 has been released

As the heading says Microsoft team has released their latest update for the DNS Management Pack fro SCOM. Compare with the previous MP this is completely revamp one based on their experience they gathered during the deployment time with XBOX team. Look forward to take this to customer environment since previous version had lot of unnecessary noises.

Daniel Savage (Program Manager) of System Center team explain more details about this release and why they feel this release will be worthy than previous version. You can read more about it here. You can download the latest MP from here.