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Call to try out the System Center 2012 stack

11:17 am in Uncategorized by mikeresseler

For all the System Center fans in the world it is an exciting time… The 2012 stack is coming and every day there is more information about the features, capabilities and so on…

Management is a very hot topic, and the private cloud, hybrid cloud and public cloud aren’t going to change that.  I personally believe the opposite… The more “cloud” we are going to get, the more management we will need.

At that moment, a single pane of glass becomes major important.  And the System Center suite, together with it’s ecosystem of partners can and will deliver that.

Now here’s a call for all of you… You don’t need to believe me, just download, play, work and test them… And you will see that I’m right Smile

 

Where can I find them?

For all the beta’s of the products: Download here: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/evalcenter/hh505660.aspx

The beta’s you can download are:

  • System Center Configuration Manager 2012 beta 2
  • System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2012 RC
  • System Center Operations Manager 2012 beta
  • System Center Data Protection Manager 2012 beta
  • System Center Orchestrator 2012 beta

Ok, but I need more information

You want resources and guides and how-to’s?  Those can be found on our SCUG.BE site and at http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/evalcenter/hh478202.aspx

Cool, but now what?  I’ve got the tools, how do I build my cloud?

If you want to get tips and tricks for this, then make sure that you register for the Virtual Academy and get the free training from the specialists

Join the academy to get free, easy to access training content for IT Pros on cloud computing topics, including a hands-on view at how Microsoft System Center Management tools help manage a private cloud, plus an in depth discussion on how to implement these tools. 

 

All this information, free for you…

Enjoy

Mike

TechDays 2011: Final Chance to Register with Early Bird Pricing!

6:50 pm in Uncategorized by mikeresseler

Soon it will be Techdays 2011 in Belgium.  Techdays Belgium is the opportunity to see some great sessions from top speakers all over the world, and some local speakers as well.

I’m honored to say that I will be presenting myself, together with Alexandre Verkinderen from the System Center User Group Belgium.

More information about my session will follow, but you can already find the abstract on the Techdays website: www.techdays.be

If you haven’t registered yet, then do it now, because the early bird ends on February 28th.

Hereunder you can find the communication from Microsoft about it…

Time is running out to enjoy a special Early Bird pricing and attend this year’s TechDays. With a fantastic speaker line-up, we are sure this is a not-to-miss event. Early Bird Pricing will end on February 28th, so don’t miss out on this unique opportunity and save up to €125!

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TechDays Main Conference on April 26th and 27th

During the main conference on April 26th and 27th, 6 Developer and IT-Pro tracks bring you a mix of new technology and in-depth content on current technology with over 60 sessions planned. Have a look at the session listing and you will discover which sessions have been confirmed so far. You will also notice that we have invited some top notch speakers who are eager to share their expertise.

TechDays Deep Dives on April 28th

On the third day of TechDays, April 28th, we host a Deep Dive day with 4 different tracks for developers and IT-Pros. As a developer you can choose between two tracks that go in-depth and focus on Best Practices.

 

Visual Studio 2010 Application Lifecycle Management Deep Dive sessions :

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Visual Studio 2010 ALM by Brian Keller

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Advanced Debugging with Visual Studio 2010 by Ingo Rammer

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Implementing Lean Software Delivery with Kanban and Team Foundation Server 2010 with ALM Ranger Adam Gilmore

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Practical Guidance on Visual Studio Database Projects with ALM Ranger Jens Suessmeyer

 

Windows Azure Platform Deep Dive sessions :

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Ubiquitous Communication with the Windows Azure AppFabric Service Bus by Christian Weyer

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Windows Azure AppFabric Access Control Service Deep Dive session by Vittorio Bertocci

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Real World Azure: Elasticity from on-premise to Cloud (and back) by Christian Weyer

As an IT Professional you have the option to choose between 2 solutions based tracks:

 

DirectAccess Day with John Craddock where you will learn more about:

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IPV6 technology going from deployment to management

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Securing your infrastructure with IPsec

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Deploying DirectAccess with Forefront UAG

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Deployment of Network Access Protection (NAP)

 

Virtual Desktop Infrastructure Day with Corey Hynes where you will learn more about:

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Implementing Hyper-V and System Center Virtual Machine Manager

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Implementing Pooled and Private Desktops with XenDesktop

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Implementing Application Delivery with App-V

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Implementing User State Virtualization

This is just a glimpse of what you can expect. Take a look at the constantly updated session listing to filter and browse through confirmed speakers and sessions.
Next to learning there is also the networking aspect of this conference. We give you the opportunity to connect with Product Managers from Redmond, meet your peers, talk to our user groups and much more.

Hope to see you at the TechDays!

Save your seats for TechDays 2011!

Cheers,

Mike

A new add-on for DPM: dBeamer!DPM

4:55 pm in Uncategorized by mikeresseler

It seems that there is a new add-on available for system center data protection manager. 

The add-on is called dBeamer!DPM and according to their website, it transforms DPM into a central component of a High-Availability – On-Demand infrastructure.  This of course drew my attention :-).

So I went further with reading the information

With the add-on, DPM administrators are able to browse data history captured in DPM and perform an instant data recovery from Microsoft DPM at anytime.

Ok, this is getting more interesting ;-).

The add-on allows you to start the recovery process, and instantly allows you to use the data, while the recovery process is still busy.  And even databases that are being recovered can be used instantly while the recovery is still in progress.

With dBeamer!DPM, you can even recover data from the DPM repository without the DPM service is actually running or present…

And with the fact that you can start your services (such as SQL) or your VM’s while the recovery is still in progress, make modifications to the data, it gives IT administrators a RTO of almost nothing.

Now this information comes from the website of instavia, which is the company that made the software.  I haven’t tested it out yet (I’m going to send an email asking for a test as soon as possible :-)) but it certainly seems promising.  If all above is true, then you can have a killer tool together with DPM.

Hopefully I get a test / demo license and I can give you more information soon

Cheers,

Mike

Sharepoint 2010 and SystemCenter

7:57 pm in Uncategorized by mikeresseler

Hey All,

Just attended a live meeting on System Center and Sharepoint 2010 and as usual, it was looking very promising again.

Although this is the blog about Data Protection Manager I will briefly tell also about Operations Manager and Virtualization but my main focus will be on DPM.

 

Sharepoint is a collaboration product that is used in many companies.  Many IT administrators will acknowledge that the product has become an essential asset in a business environment, but they will also acknowledge that it is a hell of a product to maintain.  This is basically because of the nature of the product.  Many team sites are created, project sites, document libraries and so on and for each type there is security and so on… To keep track on this, is very difficult for an IT admin.  It even becomes more difficult when a user has deleted a document, site or whatever and you are in charge of recovering it.

 

Another big issue with Sharepoint is managing the different farms.  When you only have one farm, you have one site where you can manage it, but when you have multiple, it’s getting more difficult to maintain it. 

 

System Center should be the answer to that, beginning with Operations Manager 2007 and the new Management Pack for Sharepoint 2010.

 

Operations Manager

This management pack has some great advantages.  To start with, the product team really has listened to the customers and the feedback that they got.  In the meeting, they explained that the new Management Pack was designed specifically to manage your entire sharepoint infrastructure (which can be multiple farms) from one console.  And this is great, even fantastic. And they went further.  The new management pack will be able to monitor the logical entity of your infrastructure.  This means that you will now have the possibility to monitor your SLA’s about sharepoint.  When one server is down, but another one is up that does the same thing, your sharepoint infrastructure will be healthy for your SLA.  And that is exactly what we want.

Check out the next pictures

Capture6

Capture7

And there’s more.  They have reduced the alerting noise in the management pack.  All common component monitoring such as SQL and IIS are disabled by default.  Why?  Because you will probably have IIS management pack and SQL management pack in your environment anyway.  And if not, you still can enable these monitors.  Important here is that you still will see that the sharepoint infrastructure is down, but not 5 times anymore when the problem is SQL oriented.  I’m not sure if this is correct, but I think the makers of this management pack listened very carefully to the Exchange Management Pack programmers :-)

 

Also, they have added all features of sharepoint (search, project server, Office web apps…) into 1 management pack and into one view.  So for all you OpsMgr admins out there… it will become easier to “deploy” a view to your sharepoint admins.  Again, cool stuff.

 

Now what are the changes between 2007 and 2010

Capture9

As you can see in the picture… A lot.  A lot more monitors, less rules, more classes.  All great news, but what more?  Less reports… Huh?  Less reports?  This is not good.  However, the team promised us that they kept only the reports that mattered.  All the other reports are SQL data, IIS data and those reports are in the other management packs. 

A new feature is the SPHA rules.  SPHA stands for SharePoint Health Analyzer and are standard in the Sharepoint product.  The good thing here is that you can create your own rules in Sharepoint (by a Sharepoint admin for example) and that Operations Manager automatically will add this to its management pack.  Again, a very nice feature and one that Sharepoint admins will love to have.

SPHA integration

 

Virtualization

The last topic off the day was Virtualization but was only touched lightly.  Nevertheless I’m gonna give you the slide here before I start with my favorite topic 😉 SCDPM

Capture26

 

Data Protection Manager

And this was presented by Jason Buffington (yep, him again :-)).  And Jason demonstrated (this guy really loves demo’s, even with all the risks :-)) in short what we can expect for Sharepoint 2010 protection with DPM 2010.

Following screenshots demonstrate the difference between DPM 2007 (w. Sharepoint 2007) and DPM 2010 (w. Sharepoint 2010)

Capture22 Capture23

To make a long story short… While you need a recovery farm today, you will be recovering single documents straight to the production infrastructure tomorrow.  And you will have all the possibilities for Disaster Recovery and so on too (see my previous post for more explanation on this).

 

As always, DPM 2010 for sharepoint proves to be another great backup solution, but not only a backup solution, it will be much more then that.  The workload will be perfectly protected through DPM with quick recoveries, automatic consistency checks and SLA’s that will be easily met.

 

And it’s getting better.  If you have a management solution that automatically deploys a DPM agent onto a new server (think Dynamic Data Center) and you deploy a new server that is part of the Sharepoint infrastructure, DPM will automatically recognize this and add it to the protection group.  No more “forgetting” about the new server…

You really got to see it in action… Jason, if you read this, try convincing your boss to come over to Belgium for a meeting with the Belgium System Center User Group 😉

 

My conclusion

The different teams really have listened to the remarks of the customers, influencers and MVP’s.  And that’s a fantastic thing.  Managing your Sharepoint infrastructure will become easier, more straightforward and better protected then ever.  In the next months, when Sharepoint 2010 will go live in many companies, a lot of admins will need to discuss the System Center products to their peers also, because implementing a solution is one thing, maintaining it is different.

Will this be perfect?  Probably not, but since the system center products are more “frameworks”, you can easily adapt it to your own needs, and don’t forget, the product teams actually listen to the feedback, so contact them if necessary.

 

Till next time.

 

Cheers,

 

Mike

System Center Data Protection Manager 2007: Examples of Errors (2)

6:36 pm in Uncategorized by mikeresseler

Hey All,

In our series of posts about DPM Errors:

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DPM tried to do a SQL log backup, either as part of a backup job or a recovery to latest point in time job. The SQL log backup job has detected a discontinuity in the SQL log chain for  SQL Server 2005 database database <name database> since the last backup. All incremental backup jobs will fail until an express full backup runs. (ID 30140 Details: Internal error code: 0x80990D11)

 

Resolution: After investigation, it seemed that the problem was that there were also backups performed straight from the SQL Management Studio.  Stopping these backups resolved the issue.  See also http://support.microsoft.com/kb/970642

Cheers,

Mike