David Overton's Blog and Discussion Site
This site is my way to share my views and general business and IT information with you about Microsoft, IT solutions for ISVs, technologists and businesses, large and small. I specialise in Windows Intune and SBS 2008.
This blog is purely the personal opinions of David Overton. If you can't find the information you were looking for e-mail me at admin@davidoverton.com.

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  • How to configure server backup in SBS 2008

    [updated due to Vlad's link] - to see the rest of the articles on SBS 2008 click here SBS 2008, like SBS 2003, comes with a server backup tool. Unlike SBS 2003, this one supports USB drives as a great removable solution,but does not support tapes. Tapes are not really required unless you need good archival solutions as keeping a rotation of tapes in a warehouse for 10 years would be more cost effective than keeping a stack of USB drives. The Console setup process ( Once SBS is set up, how to do the basic configuration through the management console ) sets up SBS 2008 for use. As you work down the list in the console you will come to backup. The process to enable this is all quite simple: The 1st time I ran the tool I did not have a removable drive attached to the system, so it failed to start the process properly I then attached my 500GB external drive and started again. I picked my device and gave it a name: Chose what got backed up (note that everything from the system drive gets backed up!), when and then confirm everything Since the backup drives are formatted, you are given one last chance, then off it goes That completed the process before you move down the list. Finally, all the SBS 2008 entries can be found at http://davidoverton.com/blogs/doverton/archive/tags/SBS+2008/default.aspx ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , SBS 2008 , SBS , Tips , SBSC , Small Business , Small Business Server 2008 , Community , Partner , Console , Backup and Restore , Backup
  • Data recovery for small businesses by true professionals

    A while back I had the pleasure of working with some guys in one of the UK's largest and probably most capable data recovery companies. They did everything from simple recoveries to physically broken media recovery and proved that the excuse "the dog ate my homework Mrs Teacher" could be proven and recovered from. Well, that was then. Now a group from this company, including Justin who I worked with have broken away to create their own small business and they continue to offer a huge amount of experience and are keen to work with SBSC partners to build their network and solutions. They offer 8 people each with years of experience from one of the leading recovery vendors Clean blench facilities for handling all levels of hardware related data recovery from all storage media. No fix no fee and trade pricing from less than £200 [ed: they did name a price, but I decided you could go talk to them to learn more] . Flexible service options. Standard services turnaround in an average of 2-3 days. Computer forensics and electronic discovery capabilities also. Justin said to me "I am sure you are aware of lots of companies offering data recovery services at the logical or software fix level, but we are really into the physically damaged drives with issues such as burn out chips on the PCB, head crashes or even seized bearings that most smaller DR companies have issues dealing with." I've used them for both simple and complex recoveries and it was always worth it. To contact them go and have a look at Palmer Data Recovery or can also e-mail Justin directly at jreynolds@palmerdata.com . ttfn David Technorati Tags: Data recovery , Small Business , SBSC
  • Windows Client (Vista and XP) - Active X installer service, Volume Activation Tool, Diagnosing XP crashes, modifying the boot configuration parameters

    If you use volume licensing with Windows Vista then you need to be aware of the tools to manage them - it is not as simple as it used to be as you now need a management tool inside the business. VAMT answers this as does Desktop Management. Then we have some webcasts on slow networks, diagnosing crashes in Windows XP (although many of the techniques work for Vista too), backup and restore in Vista, using the ActiveX installer Service and Boot config parameters VAMT 1.0 (x86) The Volume Activation Management Tool enables IT professionals to automate and centrally manage the volume activation process using a Multiple Activation Key (MAK). VAMT v1.0 is only available as a US-EN (x86) release. Best Practices on Managing Windows Vista Desktops Get best practice guidance for managing Windows Vista desktop operations. Windows Vista Service Life-Cycle Management (WVSLM) provides concise guidance to help minimise the total cost of ownership of desktop infrastructure. Process guidance and document templates help make service management concepts from the IT Infrastructure Library and the Microsoft Operations Framework tangible and easily implementable by focusing on a single and common IT service. http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=7137227 TechNet Webcast: "The Network is Slow": Identifying the Cause of Slow Network Communications (Level 200) The Offline Crash Diagnostic tool for Windows XP is available - http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=923800 TechNet Magazine: The ActiveX Installer Service in Windows Vista How do you secure the desktop against malicious ActiveX controls without limiting application compatibility? We'll take you on a tour of the ActiveX Installer Service (AxIS) in Windows Vista that addresses this issue with a new way to manage ActiveX controls. http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=7137204 Discover How to Modify Boot Configuration Parameters In the Boot Configuration Data (BCD) Editor FAQ, find out what the BCD store is, why it was created, where it's located in the registry, how to modify it and...
  • How to copy files to a DVD / CD, Use the recycle bin, Use previous versions for files and Use the built in Vista backup tools - all in a Video presented with Silverlight

    The Video I have delivered a number of Vista and Office demos over my time, so I decided to record a number of them for others to borrow, use, learn from or anything else they choose. This video covers the following subjects in enough detail for people to hopefully understand what they need to know on how to use these tools: Use of the recycle bin Use of shadow copies to undo changes to a document Use of the DVD writing tools to copy and update files on a DVD Use of the built in Vista Backup tools To see the Backup Video played using Silverlight (just try it) click here *. If you want to download it as a WMV file then head over to the new bCentral - the UK Small Business Center on MS.com - It should appear on this page soon. * it will take a few moments to open if you have Silverlight installed and require you to download Silverlight if you don't, but it is a 1MB download How I made it I simply ran through part of my normal demo talking as I went. When presenting to an audience it is easy to correct anything you do without anyone caring, however I tried to fix up the videos so this was not a problem. This has one drawback which is that the sound is not that good (one of those things I want to fix, but have not yet got round to) due to editing & cutting of the videos. I find it really hard to talk and move the mouse to the right place at the same time without a fluff in either my words or my mouse movements. Having captured the video is was simple to turn them into "Silverlight" Videos that were hosted on the Silverlight Streaming site for your pleasure - if you like them I can do more. Feel free to re-record the audio and play for your customers of make as a download for them. I have cut 10 videos to date and will release them over the next 2 weeks. The videos cover: For Vista - How to copy files to a DVD / CD, Use the recycle bin, Use previous versions for files and Use the built in Vista backup to check for Updates in Windows Vista use the new Security features in Vista and Internet Explorer to...
  • Susan Bradley's found something that does good backup and virtualisation things - StorageCraft

    Susan's blog has recently come under my radar again (meaning I have time to read blogs), so I am posting lots of things from here. This one is a product which if your customer is DR minded could enable them to spawn a Virtual PC/Server and run the backup in it. An awesome addition. He took a backup image he had done of a server, he then fired up virtual pc and restored the backed up "real" server to a virtual one and flagging the "check for hardware changes and deal with it automatically" function that the IT pro version does. Very impressive and very cool. You can even mount the image and browse a read only version of the server if you need to extract data or what not. http://www.storagecraft.com/products/ShadowProtectIT/ Check it out... very cool. The biggest thing at New Orleans.. was not the throwing of the beads...but StorageCraft and Mark Crall - E-Bitz - SBS MVP the Official Blog of the SBS "Diva" ttfn David Technorati Tags: SBS 2003 R2 , Backup , DR , Virtualisation
  • Sean Daniel on "Where's my next version of SBS?" - Cougar as was known

    I was browsing Vijay's blog and notices a link to Sean Daniel's blog discussing Cougar. While there are many details of Cougar still to be released and some I would imagine still to be decided, here are some of the most interesting things he said: There will be a migration too that will take you from your current SBS to Cougar on ANOTHER BOX. We are still working on this solution. The SBS Backup solution is being completely re-vamped. However, we have made the full switch, and the backup solution will no longer support backing up to tape. Using snapshot technology, the backups will be extremely quick using incrementals that can be scheduled as often as every 30 minutes. A copy of NTBackup will be able to extract files from the old SBS 2003 format, but no new data can be added. Cougar will need to be installed behind some kind of firewall and the single-NIC model will be the only mode. You must use a firewall in front of the SBS box, this can be a hardware router type item, or a software firewall such as ISA. There is more at SeanDaniel.com - SBS 2003 and Technology Discussions: Hey! Where's my next version of SBS? , however I thought that was interesting enough to start things off. ttfn David Technorati tags: Cougar , SBS , Backup , Migration , ISA , x64
  • What do Small Businesses worry about in IT?

    I just saw this re-sent internally and the data is quite UK centric, so: 63% of small businesses put data back and privacy as a top priority 7.6% of UK small business software spending was on Anti-Virus, in 2006 they planned to spend 10% more on data security - Source AMI 2006 50% of small businesses have as a priority to deploy in house or hosting data back up and disaster recovery (AMI) ttfn David

(c)David Overton 2006-13