#MVPDays – Storage Spaces Direct – Getting your feet wet

Today at the #MVPDays Vancouver we talked to people who had never heard of Microsoft Storage Spaces Direction (S2D). It’s hard to believe, but yes there are people out there that haven’t had the chance to get up to date on the latest Windows Server 2016 Operating System. This is usually due to meetings, ongoing projects and running older version of the Windows OS. So what were the big take aways from the session?

Opening/Upgrading SCCM 2012 R2 PowerShell

Nothing truly new here, but it is a new year and a new environment for me. I’ve just sat down at my seat at a customer’s location and wanted to inventory a bunch of things inside their System Center Configuration Manager 2012 R2 CU3 environment. Regardless it’s older and we’re in the process of migrating to Configuration Manager 2016! Exciting times ahead! In any case, I installed the Configuration Manager 2012 R2 console on my Windows 7 laptop (64-bit). See where things are going. We’re not running the latest and greatest… yet 😉

GPO/GPP – Control the Local Administrators Group

One of the issues that data center or even any Windows Administrator has is managing the local administrators group on each and every one of their domain members. There is a lovely security setting that has been around for many years, Restricted Groups, which can be controlled via local security policies of via GPO. This works, but has a few pitfalls as you’ve probably run into once in a while. Keep reading to see how you can solve some of them with Group Policy Preferences.

SCCM – Using Multiple SUPs, but clients aren’t switching

One of the issues I’ve come across is using Configuration Managers (2012 R2+) feature of being able to deploy multiple Software Update Points (SUP) within a site. This scenario is essentially to avoid using traditional network load balancing (NLB) and offload the work to the clients. One would think, if one SUP is not available it’s pretty simple, switch to the next one in the list. Well this doesn’t always happen as one may expect. Why?

Configuring Multiple Software Update Points (SUP) in SCCM

I was working on a SCCM deployment where there was already one existing Software Update Point (SUP). Due to new firewall restrictions, a few new SUPs were required. Microsoft has changed their best practices with SCCM in regards to using multiple SUPs. The best practice is to share the WSUS Database (SUSDB) and the WSUS content directory. This cuts down on a lot of space, replication and administrative issues.

Master PowerShell Tricks – Volume 2

With the amazing success of our first release of Master PowerShell Tricks Volume 1 we have commenced Volume 2 already. This time we have added some amazing new Authors to the series. It is going to be another huge success and hit the #1 Best Sellers list just like...

Free – Azure Training!

On-going training is something that anyone in IT needs. IT changes as fast as the clouds come and go! You need to keep up! There are several ways to easily keep your head in the clouds using Microsoft’s resources and social media. The New Year is here and one of your...

Comparing Office 2016 and Office365 ProPlus

With the widespread adoption of Office365, a popular question that comes our way is whether to deploy the Office 2016 Client, Office365 Client, or a hybrid of the two. The Office365 ProPlus client is available to license as a standalone monthly/annual subscription, or...

PowerShell – My way to prepare a SQL Server VM

As I get called on a lot of to do SQL Server installations, I’ve come up with what I’ve found works best for me. Every location has different infrastructure, security, networks and their way of doing things. Since I’m the one doing the installation, and I know I’ll get called back in the future at some point to upgrade, troubleshoot or manage the SQL Server environment, I like to have a set of standards. Documentation, I actually do enjoy writing it (yes I may be sick), but having a self-documenting PowerShell script is even better!

PowerShell – Start-Service, Stop-Service, they work, but not always well enough!

Well as the title suggests, I’m happy with the code, but I always find myself adding more and more code around the cmdlets. Service control in Windows has been pretty straight forward for the past few decades. Obviously PowerShell can control the state and configuration of services, but one thing I’ve always run into with service control is reacting to how the service stops and starts and also managing the state of dependent services. I’m sharing some short code functions that I use.

Master PowerShell tricks Volume 1

Update…. Order your copy today. Our E-Book is available on Kindle from Amazon Below is a preview of the Kindle Version that was just released as of today. December 19, 2016. The book documents the following Master PowerShell tricks that these two experts employ...

PowerShell – Is your AD Sites and Services missing subnets?

This has been a very common pain point for Active Directory administrators. AD is perfectly planned according to Microsoft’s best practices and successfully deployed. But as time goes on, network admins change the network topology, devices are added here and there and if there is no formal process of adding new networks, AD Sites and Services will mostly likely not be updated to reflect these changes.

Countdown to Orlando MVPDays

We are less than 1 week away from our last stop on the North American MVPDays Community roadshow. This time we are heading all the way down to Orlando Florida on December 2, 2016. We still have space left to come out and see some amazing presenters and support your...

Why Do Hyper Converged Installs fail?

About two years ago the term Hyper Converged infrastructure was not common in most discussions around that IT water cooler. Now it seems like this is all that people are talking about. Hyper Converged has skyrocketed onto the Gartner Magic quadrant and customers are...

Windows Time Sync – The fixes!

As many of you know when running a simple standalone machine at home, at work, in a datacenter or in the cloud, time keeping can be tricky. Very odd though, it’s been around for over a decade and people/enterprises still can’t seem to figure out how it really works or how they should configure it.

Every Windows computer has a lovely service on it that is called W32Time with a description that reads “Windows Time Service”. This service is set to manual, and for all intents and purposes can be left that way.

@MVPDays Orlando Registration and Schedule now live

Hey @MVPDays fans registrations are now open for MVPDays Florida on December 2, 2016. #mvphour Checkout www.mvpdays.com for more information   You can see the schedule and speakers for the event at:   http://mvpdaysfl.busyconf.com/schedule   See you all in a month in...

Storage Spaces Direct #S2D for Everyone

This week at #MVPDays Seattle we had a chance to have some really great discussions on the future of storage in the Data Center. As such I had a chance to attend a really great session delivered by MVP’s Anton Gostev @Gostev and Clint Wyckoff @clintwyckoff on...

Made the cut this week on Channel 9 at Microsoft

I am always extremely proud to be recognized out of the thousands of videos up on @ch9.   This week @clintwyckoff (Clint Wyckoff – MVP) and myself @davekawula made the cut. Our video on must attend sessions of MS Ignite was really popular and made the short list of...

My Favourite moments from MVPDays over the past 3 years

Hey folks I thought I would write this up as a quick post that truly shows the power of community.   Here are also a few of the top moments @twitter has captured for us. I love a lot of this pictures captured from Various #MVPHour sightings across north America....

My Sessions at Microsoft Ignite 2016

Show your support and come cheer us on at Microsoft Ignite 2016.   This year I have been so fortunate to have been selected for 2 x Sessions.     The First one will be on Tuesday, September 27, 2016 – 11:30 – 12:15PM Room B203   Interact with an MVP discussion panel...

Must attend Sessions of Microsoft Ignite 2016

Attending a conference like Microsoft Ignite can be a daunting task. There are over 25,000 attendees + Speakers + Sponsors etc. Right now there is a list of over 1,000 sessions to choose from and there are so many choices it is actually quite confusing. So my friend...

MVPDays Website – Relaunch today

Well we were in need of a new website as the old one had been live since 2014. So today we rebranded and re-launched the www.mvpdays.com website. We would love your feedback on it and as such send your comments via twitter to @mvpdays   Hope you enjoy the new look and...

HyperGrid V-Tax Refund Webinar recording now available

The recording of a webinar I did with Hypergrid is now available online at: Click here to view the Webinar   Replacing VMware with Hyper-V means a cool VMware tax refund. Do you know what your potential savings are? And while it looks great from a budget perspective,...

MVPDays 2016 Atlanta Call for Speakers now open

    MVPDays North American Roadshow is a technical event that is delivered by industry leading expert Microsoft MVP’s and prospective MVP’s. These sessions are not geared around Vendor Marketing fluff and have real content based on the deep...

MVPDays is expanding to the US in 2016

MVPDays was founded by Cristal and Dave Kawula back in 2013. It started as a simple idea; “There’s got to be a good way for MVPs to reach the IT community and share their vast knowledge and experience in a fun and engaging way” I mean, what is the...

Humble Beginnings with Channel 9

I can’t believe that it has been almost a whole year since we started the journey of publishing our content on Channel 9 #C9. @supercristal1 and myself were on a mission to get at least 10 episodes created in the first 60 days. For any of you that have produced...

Interview with an MVP a year in Review

Folks it has been close to a year since we launched our Channel9 #CH9 series called https://channel9.msdn.com/blogs/interview-with-an-mvp . We have had such amazing feedback over the past 12 months that I thought we would highlight our top 8 Episodes. These 8 Episodes...

MVPAward #FridayFive

It is pretty cool when you wake up in the morning and your work is recognized. Today it was by the #MVPAward #FridayFive where they select content from top contributors from around the world and feature it.   You can follow the Friday Five at #FridayFive  ...

Hyper-V Networking Deep Dive

I recently had the chance to do a nice Deep Dive session on Hyper-V Networking. It is often hard for customers to visualize what exactly is being configures with Hyper-V once it is installed.   The Diagram below was an illustration that walked through the following...

VMCE Advanced Training live from London

I had the privilege of attending the first worldwide run of Veeam’s Certified Engineer Advanced (Architect) training this week. It was filled with some of the brightest minds from around the world. Attending training like this gives someone like myself the...

Veeam Community Podcast 116

In this episode, Clint Wyckoff hosts Dave Kawula (@davekawula). Dave is a Microsoft MVP for Cloud and Datacenter Management, Inaugural Veeam Vanguard, Community Evangelist and Independent Blogger (CheckYourLogs.net). Dave and Clint discuss the Microsoft MVP Program,...

MVPDays 2016 Countdown Show #1

Hey there everyone Cristal Kawula here and I am so pleased to give your our first MVPDays 2016 countdown show. It has been a little while for me since I have appeared on Interview with an MVP and I am so please to be back. This year I will be presenting my own session...

Deploying Windows 10 like a Champ

In this episode I was lucky enough to snap Mr. Emile Cabot MVP and Deployment Guru. He walks through all of the deployment essentials For your very own Windows 10 Project. This was a great session that we did at Channel 9 studios in Redmond, WA. We hope you enjoy.  ...

Dude Where’s my Server?

In this episode I was so lucky to be joined by my great friend Clint Wyckoff MVP from Veeam Software. We also had Emile Cabot MVP come in with a Cameo as “The Angry Boss”. We were live trying to record another session as we got a call from the...

MVPHour Live from Redmond

For only the second time ever we have recorded #MVPHour Live. In this episode Clint Wyckoff – MVP, Emile Cabot – MVP, and myself (Dave Kawula – MVP) discussed Some of the topics streaming in on our live twitter feed #MVPHour.   “I think this one will be an...

MDT 2013 Update 1 Re-released

Anyone who installed MDT 2013 Update 1 experienced a number of issues with the initial release. As of September 16, Microsoft has re-released MDT 2013 Update 1 under build 8298, which addresses most (but not all) of these issues. The new build replaces the existing...

Windows 10 – Where is my 3rd Monitor!?

Well like most of us mobility workers, we don’t always make it into the office. Today I showed up at the office and actually had time to sit at my desk. Odd, my 3rd monitor wasn’t working. Worked fine in Windows 8.1. Did the usual checks… Windows 10...

Black Belt – Hyper-V Security Design

Hear the Black Belt tips and tricks to protect Hyper-V datacenters of all sizes by fixing numerous security vulnerabilities that you may be exposed to, but never even knew about. Join Hyper-V MVP and 5nine Technical Evangelist Dave Kawula to learn the best practices...

MVPDays 2015 Edmonton – Agenda

I am so pleased to present below our Agenda for the MVPDays 2015 Western Canada Roadshow. We have such an amazing lineup of guest speakers, sponsors, and event team this year. It will surely be the best event that we have ever put on. If you have not yet registered go...

MVPDays 2015 Calgary – Agenda

I am so pleased to present below our Agenda for the MVPDays 2015 Western Canada Roadshow. We have such an amazing lineup of guest speakers, sponsors, and event team this year. It will surely be the best event that we have ever put on. If you have not yet registered go...

MVPDays 2015 Vancouver– Agenda

I am so pleased to present below our Agenda for the MVPDays 2015 Western Canada Roadshow. We have such an amazing lineup of guest speakers, sponsors, and event team this year. It will surely be the best event that we have ever put on. If you have not yet registered go...

Canadian MVP’s and Microsoft provide aid to Evacuee’s

I am so proud that we were able to provide some much needed assistance to the Northern Lights School District #113 in La Ronge during their time of need. On July 3, 2015 a notice was given to have the entire township of LA Ronge evacuated. Unfortunately part of the DR...

Speaking at TechMentor 2015 in Redmond

I will be speaking at the TechMentor conference August 3-7, 2015. This will be an exciting chance to meet some of the smartest and coolest geeks in the industry. My session with be T08 – From Zero to Hero in 75 Minutes: Deploying a HyperConverged Architecture for the...

Critical Patch for Hyper-V Servers – MS15-068

On July 14, 2015 Microsoft released a Critical Hotfix for Hyper-V Servers. The details are a bit vague right now, but it seems that if a Guest has elevated rights with the right tools they can gain access to the Host’s Parent Partition. For obvious reasons this...

Gridstore + Microsoft Private Cloud Fast Track

It was announced today in a press release by Gridstore that they have been approved into the Microsoft Private Cloud Fast Track Program. This is a major step forward by the industry towards accepting HyperConverged Technologies. Below is a sample illustration of a...

Cannot find useable certificate in Server 2012 R2 Hyper-V

I was doing some work on my home network this weekend, and in the process joined my Hyper-V hosts to a new domain. My demo laptop, which had about 20 VMs saved, threw an error when I attempted to start them, stating that Hyper-V could not find a useable certificate....

Scripts for used for MVP V-Conf

As promised during my Black Belt – Troubleshooting Hyper-V Performance Session at the MVP V-Conf. Please find the Scripts that I used for the demo below: http://1drv.ms/1KTc7ET     Enjoy,  ...

MVPDays Facebook Fan Site

If you are looking to follow our announcements for the MVPDays Community including. Sessions, photos, recordings, speaker announcements, and much more. Go to www.facebook.com/mvpdays Also don’t forget to register for this year’s show at www.mvpdays.com You...

Introduction to Hyper-V Management for the VMware Admin

Join 5Nine Software for a free webinar on June 18!   Featuring Symon Perriman and Alex Karavanov from 5Nine Software. Hyper-V can be overwhelming for new users or VMware administrators managing Microsoft virtualization for the first time. In this technical...

Overview of Patch Solution

When I decided to write PatchSolution it was to solve some very specific issues with a customer that I was working with. I am really pleased to now be able to start documenting this and sharing with the community. When looking at PatchSolution below is the...

PatchSolution is now available via CodePlex

I am so pleased to announce that thanks to the amazing work of Allan Rafuse we have released “PatchSolution” We have decided to make to this available for how much… Guess it…. $$$$ … Free!! Why you ask? Well it’s because we love the community and...

Building Tiered Jobs with Veeam using PowerShell

As part of a new White Paper that I am putting together for Veeam I have written a cool PowerShell Script to help build tiered jobs using Veeam Backup and Replication. The purpose of this script was to help automate three tiers of jobs: Platinum Gold Silver   The...

Microsoft to Open Azure Data Center in Canada in 2016

This is huge news everyone!! Microsoft will open it’s first Canadian Data Centers in Toronto and Quebec city in 2016. Here is a little snippet from their press release: Press Release From Microsoft: MICROSOFT CLOUD TO TOUCH DOWN IN CANADA Locally deployed Azure,...

MVPDays 2015 is coming back to Western Canada

I am so pleased to announce the MVP Days will be coming back to Western Canada this year. We are going to be visiting the following cities: Vancouver – September 21, 2015 Calgary – September 23, 2015 Edmonton – September 25, 2015 You can Register at www.mvpdays.com...

MVPDays 2014 Sessions are now Online

Great news everyone the sessions from MVPDays 2014 are online and available. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCKwKwTExLTHMn69hLNM03-w     Don’t forget to register for this year’s roadshow at www.mvpdays.com   We also have a Facebook Fan site at...

Register for the MVP Virtual Conference Today

Register to attend the Microsoft MVP Virtual Conference     I wanted to let you know about a great free event that Microsoft and the MVPs are putting on, May 14th & 15th.  Join Microsoft MVPs from the Americas’ region as they share their knowledge...

Setting up Azure AD Connect Public Preview

QUICKPOST…. Hey there I wanted to write up a quick note on a new way to connect your on premise Active Directory to Windows Azure. It is called Azure AD Connect and can be is now available for download. http://connect.microsoft.com/site1164/program8612  ...

Taking Hydration to the Next Level

For a number of years now, Johan Arwidmark has been publishing Hydration Kits from his www.deploymentresearch.com site. Hydration is the process of automating the build of an environment, either lab or production.  This is important because it provides a consistent...

MVPDays Session – Advanced Windows Deployments

This was a session that I did in Vancouver in September 2014 at MVPDays Session – Advanced Windows Deployments Presenters – Dave Kawula MVP / Emile Cabot You asked for a real world scenario for Advanced Windows Deployments and that is what we have created.   This book...

Routing Mod for Johan’s Hydration Kit

I wanted to show a really cool routing Modification that I have built to Johan’s Hydration Kit. His kit can be downloaded from www.deploymentresearch.com and is widely used by ConfigMgr professionals all over the world. One of the challenges I face with these...

OSDWeek with Johan Arwidmark and Dave Kawula

There are two main technical factors with implementing a new Operating System across your enterprise: Ensuring you have an infrastructure that can support the migration process, and acquiring the expertise to upgrade your end user workstations with minimal effort. Of...

Deploying Active Directory Replica DC to Azure

A lot of us have been setting up Hybrid Cloud (Azure) environments and one of the first things that needs to be done is setup a Replica Domain Controller. This post will show the steps that I followed to get this done.   Before we get started it is important to note...