The musings of an IT Consultant


October 11, 2008  7:01 PM

Time to legitimize my Cisco knowledge…

Raj Perumal Raj Perumal Profile: Raj Perumal

So I used to work with Cisco products many years ago. I find myself heading back that way as of late but I have no certifications to show for it. I never really had the time due to all the other certifications I was pursuing.

Now I’ve decided that it’s a good time for me to pursue it and make the knowledge I already know about Cisco legitimate by pursuing some Cisco certifications. This will also help to dust off some of the cobwebs from some of the stuff I haven’t worked with in a while.

Currently I’m preparing to write my CCNA exam (Exam # 640-802). The CCNA exam covers basic routing & switching topics and basic networking skills along with IPv4 and IPv6. For all of you budding computer techs out there I think it’s a great exam to use to prove your networking knowledge to potential employers.

-Cheers, RP

October 10, 2008  12:37 AM

SSL and Migrating Public Folders in Exchange 2003

Raj Perumal Raj Perumal Profile: Raj Perumal

The other day I ran into an interesting problem with public folders. Someone was trying to run the pfmigrate.wsf utility (the same utility I mentioned in my blog) and they couldn’t get the script to recognize the public folders. The tool said that there were 0 public folders to migrate.

When they tried to view the public folders in the Exchange System Manager they received an SSL error. This is because someone has tried to require ssl on the public folders through IIS. This usually happens when someone is configuring SSL on their Exchange server for SSL access for their Outlook Web Access server or for RPC over HTTPS. They end up selecting all the sub folders in the default web site and apply SSL to everything. This adversely affects the public folders.

If you remove SSL from the sub folders you don’t need SSL on and then go back and try to run pfmigrate.wsf again it will work. You will also be able to view the public folders without an error in Exchange System Manager again.

 -RP


October 9, 2008  4:49 PM

Epic Technology Day!

Raj Perumal Raj Perumal Profile: Raj Perumal

Hi folks, as you may know I work in the IT consulting field. One of my most favourite times of year is when Epic Technology day comes around. It’s held twice a year here in Winnipeg and is considered one of HP’s largest partner held events in North America.  It is completely free to attend this event. This time it’s on October 21st, 2008. At technology day we talk about all sorts of different kind of technology and how it can help you in your daily lives. This is the kind of technology that I use in my everyday business to help out my customers.

I’ll be presenting at Epic Technology Day on virtualization so if you are interested in coming to see me or even any of the other presenters, come on down!

Some of the presenters are HP, VMWare, Intel, Citrix, Novell, Red Hat, and Data Domain. There is pretty much something to be had for everyone. This isn’t your normal boring vendor conference where you come to visit a bunch of booths and get a lot of free stuff. I’ve been told countless times by visitors to the event that people come to this and genuinely come out with more knowledge having learned of new and interesting ways to do things in IT. If you can make it, make sure you come down.

You can view the presentation schedule here.

You can register for the event here.

 -RP


October 6, 2008  3:45 AM

Migrating public folders to a newly installed Exchange Server

Raj Perumal Raj Perumal Profile: Raj Perumal

When migrating your mailboxes to a new server you can’t forget the ever important public folders. Public folders aren’t just for shared folders that you create on your own but they also include the required system public folders which allow Exchange to operate.

When migrating to a new server you absolutely need to migrate these public folders otherwise you will run into a whole host of issues on the new server and your users will be quite upset with you. Now you could just go to each public folder individually and setup replication, but that would take forever and a day, especially if you have tons of public folders.

 Instead you should use a script called pfmigrate.wsf. It’s located in the exdeploy folder on your Exchange installation CD. This script will allow you to easily replicate the public folders to your new server and then after replication is complete you can easily turn off the replication.

Full instructions can be found here.

 -RP


October 6, 2008  3:24 AM

GSM Association to offer “Mobile Broadband”

Raj Perumal Raj Perumal Profile: Raj Perumal

The GSM association has recently announced a new type of wireless access for mobile users. They are calling it “Mobile Broadband”. Notebooks that people buy will feature a label on them with this name.

What Mobile Broadband will bring is the ability to surf the Internet from your notebook without having to connect to an external modem. Instead you will be able to connect directly to your wireless provider. This will be done by the use of wireless hardware that will be built right into the notebooks when you buy them.

You can read more about it here.

 -RP


October 1, 2008  4:16 AM

RIM releases Maintenance Release 1 for BES 4.1 SP6 for Microsoft Exchange

Raj Perumal Raj Perumal Profile: Raj Perumal

Hi folks, RIM has just released Maintenance Release 1 for BES 4.1 SP6. They had announced this earlier but then retracted the announcement because they had only released it for Domino. Now they’ve finally released the version for Microsoft Exchange.

As per usual, follow proper patching procedures by running this in a test environment if at all possible. After you’ve done your thorough testing then you can think about releasing it to production.

 This fixes a few issues with Exchange 2007, mixed environment with Exchange 2003 and 2007, and a problem with cached mode when using Outlook 2007.

You can get the patch from BlackBerry’s site and read the release notes there.

-RP


September 29, 2008  6:24 AM

The virtualization wars are slowly starting to yield some benefits!

Raj Perumal Raj Perumal Profile: Raj Perumal

So this just in. Just in case if you were still wondering if there was anything to the virtualization mantra that is being constantly recited through the IT community, Symantec has announced that you no longer need to purchase individual Symantec Backup Exec agents for each guest OS that exists on one physical box. Instead you only need to license once per Hypervisor with Symantec Backup Exec 12.5.

That’s right, you heard me, one agent, multiple virtual servers, one physical box. Can I get a booyah!?!?! I told you this competition would be great for consumers! Microsoft breaking into Hyper-V to compete with VMWare has been great for the market. First VMWare’s ESXi becomes free, then Microsoft relaxes their licensing restrictions in relation to VMWare, and now Symantec makes it cheaper for businesses to use Symantec’s backup software if they virtualize.

Now that’s what I’m talking about! It’s about time companies stopped penalizing people for virtualizing and instead start encouraging it! This is a great move and I commend Symantec for taking this step. Symantec Backup Exec is probably one of the most popular pieces of backup software out there and this announcement will definitely help push business in what I believe is the right direction towards virtualization.

 I hope this war doesn’t end for a long time, because the longer it plays out, the more benefits to the consumer it will bring! You can read more about the announcement here.

 -RP


September 29, 2008  6:09 AM

BlackBerry Javelin? I want one!

Raj Perumal Raj Perumal Profile: Raj Perumal

So you may have heard about the pending new BlackBerry called the Javelin from Rim. I want one! A BlackBerry with the keyboard of my Curve but with a higher resolution than the Bold? I’m all over that!

 Unfortunately I hear it won’t support 3G but that’s the rumor for now. Apparently it will have a 3.2 MP camera which is sweet for the cell phone world. It will also feature GPS and bluetooth not to mention WiFi! I’m sure this phone will sell well in the corporate market. Sure the Bold is great and you can get it right now but as I’ve mentioned before, I’m not really partial to it. The smaller Javelin I think will definitely peak the interest of those BlackBerry users out there.

A few co-workers of mine are using the Bold and I have to say the display is excellent and the use of WiFi is cool, but I still love my Curve…..at least until the Javelin comes out! :) You can read more about the Javelin here.

-Cheers, RP


September 27, 2008  3:12 PM

Problems moving disabled Exchange 2003 mailboxes to a new server…

Raj Perumal Raj Perumal Profile: Raj Perumal

Here’s an interesting problem that will come up for you from time to time when doing Exchange server migrations. If you go to move mailboxes using the mailbox migration wizard built into Exchange, you’ll find that the wizard will fail on moving any mailboxes that have had their Active Directory account disabled. This can be a problem especially if you still want to keep that e-mail in your new Exchange server because you plan on re-enabling that account at a later date.

The reason this happens is because when you disable a mailbox you might lose the msExchMasterAccountSID attribute off of the account. To fix this you can just regenerate this attribute. It’s fairly easy to do. Just go into the account in the Active Directory Users and Computers console and go to the properties of the account. Then you can go to the Exchange Advanced tab and click on Mailbox Rights. In there you will find the SELF object listed as one of the users and then just add the Associated External Account permission to it.

 This will fix the problem however you will have to wait for a long time before you can move the mailboxes again. According to Microsoft you might have to wait up to at least 2 hours before the mailboxes will be ready to move due to directory replication and Exchange cache refresh latencies. But then once you wait and come back, you will see that the mailboxes move like a charm.

This doesn’t help you however if you have a billion disabled mailboxes to move. Going into each mailbox individually and modifying it could literally take forever and a day. So instead Microsoft has a way for you to do it for large amounts of disabled accounts. You can find their instructions here in their knowledgebase article. Happy migrating!

-RP


September 22, 2008  4:42 AM

Paul Chan is leaving VMWare

Raj Perumal Raj Perumal Profile: Raj Perumal

Hi folks, this just in from the VMWare world. Paul Chan, Vice President of Product Development at VMWare is hitting the road!

This guy has been working for VMWare for 7 years and is now finally leaving the company. Considering the recent shakeup at VMWare with Diane Greene, former CEO, what does this mean? Obviously VMWare is already feeling the weight of the Microsoft giant bearing down on them and these changes could well be effects of that. This is of course speculation on my part but it does make one wonder.

Up until now VMWare has had the luxury of being able to claim that at least they are a level 1 hypervisor over Microsoft’s level 2 hypervisor. But now Microsoft has announced the pending release of their own level 1 hypervisor product with Hyper-V Server 2008. With this announcement VMWare has got to be feeling the crunch.

You can read more about Paul Chan’s departure here and read more about standalone Hyper-V here.

-RP


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