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Posts Tagged ‘Planning’

SCVMM 2012 Management ports and protocols. Detailed

June 7, 2011 Leave a comment

Here are the list of ports/protocols for the new SCVMM 2012.

From To Protocol Default
port
Where to change port setting
VMM management server P2V
source agent (control channel)
DCOM 135
Load Balancer HTTP/HTTPS 80/443 Load balancer configuration provider
WSUS server (data channel) HTTP/HTTPS 80/8530
(non-SSL), 443/8531 (with SSL)
These ports are the IIS port binding with WSUS. They cannot be changed from VMM.
WSUS server (control channel) HTTP/HTTPS 80/8530
(non-SSL), 443/8531 (with SSL)
These ports are the IIS port binding with WSUS. They cannot be changed from VMM.
VMM agent on Windows Server–based host (data
channel for file transfers)
HTTPS
(using BITS)
443
(Maximum value: 32768)
Citrix XenServer host (customization data
channel)
iSCSI 3260 On XenServer in transfer VM
XenServer host (control channel) HTTPS 5989 On XenServer host in: /opt/cimserver/cimserver_planned.conf
remote Microsoft SQL Server database TDS 1433
VMM agent on Windows Server–based host (control
channel)
WS-Management 5985 VMM setup
VMM agent on Windows Server–based host (control
channel – SSL)
WS-Management 5986
in-guest agent (VMM to virtual machine control
channel)
WS-Management 5985
Storage Management Service WMI Local
call
Cluster PowerShell interface PowerShell n/a
P2V source agent (data channel) BITS User-Defined P2V cmdlet option
VMM library server hosts
file transfer
BITS 443
(Maximum value: 32768)
VMM setup
VMM host-to-host file transfer BITS 443
(Maximum value: 32768)
VMM Self-Service Portal VMM
Self-Service Portal web server
HTTPS 443 VMM setup
VMM Self-Service Portal web server VMM
management server
WCF 8100 VMM setup
Console connections (RDP) virtual
machines through Hyper-V hosts (VMConnect)
RDP 2179 VMM console
Remote Desktop virtual
machines
RDP 3389 On the virtual machine
VMM console VMM
management server
WCF 8100 VMM setup
VMM management server (HTTPS) WCF 8101 VMM setup
VMM management server (NET.TCP) WCF 8102 VMM setup
VMM management server (HTTP) WCF 8103 VMM setup
Windows PE agent VMM
management server (control channel)
WCF 8101 VMM setup
VMM management server (time sync) WCF 8103 VMM setup
WDS provider VMM
management server
WCF 8102 VMM setup
Storage Management Service  SMI-S Provider CIM-XML Provider-specific
port
VMM management server VMware
ESX Server 3i hosts
HTTPS 443

Others

Connection Type Protocol Default port Where to change port setting
OOB Connection – SMASH over WS-Man HTTPS 443 On BMC
OOB Connection IPMI IPMI 623 On BMC
BITS port for VMM transfers (data channel)
BITS 443 VMM setup
VMware ESX Server 3.0 and VMware ESX Server 3.5 hosts SFTP 22
VMware Web Services
communication
HTTPS 443 VMM console

Note: When you install the VMM management server you can assign some of the ports that it will use for communications and file transfers between the VMM components.

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Hyper-V : Supported Server Guest Operating Systems. Updated May 2011

May 16, 2011 Leave a comment

 

 The following tables list the Server guest operating systems that are supported for use on a virtual machine as a guest operating system.

Server guest operating system Editions Virtual processors
Windows Server 2008 R2 with Service Pack 1 Standard, Enterprise, Datacenter, and Web editions 1, 2, or 4
Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard, Enterprise, Datacenter, and Windows Web Server 2008 R2 1, 2, or 4
Windows Server 2008 Standard, Standard without Hyper-V, Enterprise, Enterprise without Hyper-V, Datacenter, Datacenter without Hyper-V, Windows Web Server 2008, and HPC Edition 1, 2, or 4
Windows Server 2003 R2 with Service Pack 2 Standard, Enterprise, Datacenter, and Web 1 or 2
Windows Home Server 2011 Standard 1
Windows Storage Server 2008 R2 Essentials 1
Windows Small Business Server 2011 Essentials 1 or 2
Windows Small Business Server 2011 Standard 1, 2, or 4
Windows Server 2003 R2 x64 Edition with Service Pack 2 Standard, Enterprise, and Datacenter 1 or 2
Windows Server 2003 with Service Pack 2 Standard, Enterprise, Datacenter, and Web 1 or 2
Windows Server 2003 x64 Edition with Service Pack 2 Standard, Enterprise, and Datacenter 1 or 2
CentOS 5.2 through 5.6 (NEW)  x86 edition and x64 edition 1, 2, or 4
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.6 x86 edition and x64 edition 1, 2, or 4
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.5 x86 edition and x64 edition 1, 2, or 4
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.4 x86 edition and x64 edition 1, 2, or 4
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.3 x86 edition and x64 edition 1, 2, or 4
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.2 x86 edition and x64 edition 1, 2, or 4
SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 with Service Pack 1 x86 edition and x64 edition 1, 2, or 4
SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 with Service Pack 4 x86 edition and x64 edition 1, 2, or 4

 Note: Support for Windows 2000 Server and Windows XP with Service Pack 2 (x86) ended on July 13, 2010

Source : http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc794868(WS.10).aspx

Hyper-V : Virtual Hard Disks. Benefits of Fixed disks

March 31, 2011 5 comments

 

When creating a Virtual Machine, you can select to use either virtual hard disks or physical disks that are directly attached to a virtual machine.

My personal advise and what I have seen from Microsoft folks is to always use FIXED DISK for production environment, even with the release of Windows Server 2008 R2, which one of the enhancements was the improved performance of dynamic VHD files.

The explanation and benetifts for that is simple:

 1. Almost the same performance as passthroug disks

2. Portability : you can move/copy the VHD

3. Backup : you can backup at the VHD level and better, using DPM you can restore at ITEM level ( how cools is that! )

 4.You can have Snapshots

 5. The fixed sized VHD performance has been on-par with the physical disk since Windows Server 2008/Hyper-V

 If you use pass-through disks you lose all of the benefits of VHD files such as portability, snap-shotting and thin provisioning. Considering these trade-offs, using pass-through disks should really only be considered if you require a disk that is greater than 2 TB in size or if your application is I/O bound and you really could benefit from another .1 ms shaved off your average response time.  

 Disks Summary table:

Storage Container Pros Cons
Pass-through DisK
  • Fastest performance
  • Simplest storage path because file system on host is not involved.
  • Better alignment under SAN.
  • Lower CPU utilization
  • Support very large disks
  • VM snapshot cannot be taken
  • Disk is being used exclusively and directly by a single virtual machine.
  • Pass-through disks cannot be backed up by the Hyper-V VSS writer and any backup program that uses the Hyper-V VSS writer.
  • Fixed sized VHD
    • Highest performance of all VHD types.
    • Simplest VHD file format to give the best I/O alignment.
    • More robust than dynamic or differencing VHD due to the lack of block allocation tables (i.e. redirection layer).
    • File-based storage container has more management advantages than pass-through disk.
    • Expanding is available to increase the capacity of VHD.
    • No risk of underlying volume running out of space during VM operations
    • Up front space allocation may increase the storage cost when large of number fixed VHD are deployed.
    • Large fixed VHD Creation is time-consuming.
    • Shrinking the virtual capacity (i.e. reducing the virtual size) is not possible.
    Dynamically expanding or                  

     
     

     

     

    Differencing VHD

       

    • Good performance
    • Quicker to create than fixed sized VHD
    • Grow dynamically to save disk space and provide efficient storage usage.
    • Smaller VHD file size makes it more nimble in terms of transporting across the network.
    • Blocks of full zeros will not get allocated and thus save the space under certain circumstances.
    • Compact operation is available to reduce the actual physical file size
    • Interleaving of meta-data and data blocks may cause I/O alignment issues.
    • Write performance may suffer during VHD expanding.
    • Dynamically expanding and differencing VHDs cannot exceed 2040GB
    • May get VM paused or VHD yanked out if disk space is running out due to the dynamic growth.
    • Shrinking the virtual capacity is not supported.
    • Expanding is not available for differencing VHDs due to the inherent size limitation of parent disk.
    • Defrag is not recommended due to inherent re-directional layer.

    Virtual Machines that are misaligned

    March 14, 2011 Leave a comment

    For existing child VMs that are misaligned, in order to correct the partition offset, a new physical disk must be created and formatted, and the data has to be migrated from the original disk to the new one.

    Important note: Both Windows 7 and Windows 2008/2008R2  create aligned partition

    This problem  occurs when the partitioning  scheme used by the host OS doesn’t match the block boundaries inside the LUN.If the guest file system is not aligned, it may become necessary to read or write twice as many blocks of storage than the guest actually requested since any guest file system block actually occupies at least two partial storage blocks.

    All VHD types can be formatted with the correct offset at the time of  creation by booting the child VM before installing an OS and manually setting the partition offset. . The recommended starting offset value for Windows OSs is 32768. The default starting offset value typically observed is 32256.
    How to verify the Offset value:

    1. Run msinfo32 on the guest VM by selecting
    Start > All Programs > Accessories > System Tools > System Information.
    or type Start > Run and enter the following command : MSINFO32
    2. Navigate to Components > Storage > Disks and check the value for partition starting offset.


    If the misaligned virtual disk is the boot partition, follow these  steps:
    1. Back up the VM system image.
    2. Shut down the VM.
    3. Attach the misaligned system image virtual disk to a different VM.
    4. Attach a new aligned virtual disk to this VM.
    5. Copy the contents of the system image (for example, C: in Windows) virtual disk to the new aligned virtual disk.
    There are various tools that can be used to copy the contents from the misaligned virtual disk to the new aligned virtual disk:
    − Windows xcopy
    − Norton/Symantec™ Ghost: Norton/Symantec Ghost can be used to back up a full system image on the misaligned virtual disk and then be restored to a previously created, aligned virtual disk file system.
    For Microsoft Hyper-V LUNs mapped to the Hyper-V parent partition using the incorrect LUN protocol type but with

    aligned VHDs, create a new LUN using the correct LUN protocol type and copy the
    contents (VMs and VHDs) from the misaligned LUN to this new LUN.

    For Microsoft Hyper-V LUNs mapped to the Hyper-V parent partition using the   incorrect LUN protocol type but with misaligned VHDs, create a new LUN using the correct LUN protocol type and copy the contents (VMs and VHDs) from the misaligned LUN to this new LUN.!01

    Next, To set up the starting offset, follow these steps:

    1. Boot the child VM with the Windows Preinstall Environment boot CD.
    2. Select

    Start > Run and enter the following command:
    diskpart
    3. Type the following into the prompt:
    select disk 0
    4. Type the following into the prompt:
    create partition primary align=32
    5. Reboot the child VM with the Windows Preinstall Environment boot CD.
    6. Install the operating system as normal.
    Virtual disks to be used as data disks can be formatted with the correct  offset at the time of creation by using Diskpart in the VM. To align the virtual disk, follow these steps:

    1. Boot the child VM with the Windows Preinstall Environment boot CD.
    2. Select Start > Run and enter the following command:
    diskpart
    3. Determine the appropriate disk to use by typing the following into the prompt:
    list disk
    4. Select the correct disk by typing the following into the prompt:
    select disk [#]
    5. Type the following into the prompt:
    create partition primary align=32
    6. To exit, type the following in the prompt:
    exit
    7. Format the data disk as you would normally

    For pass-through disks and LUNs directly mapped to the child OS, create a new LUN using the correct LUN protocol type, map the LUN to the VM, and copy the contents from the misaligned LUN to this new aligned LUN.

    For info about  misaligned in Windows 2003, please have a look here : http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;929491

    Windows 7 and W2008 R2 SP1 released. Important Steps to follow before you install

    February 23, 2011 1 comment

     

    SP1 Download link : http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx?FamilyID=c3202ce6-4056-4059-8a1b-3a9b77cdfdda

    Before you install Windows 7 SP1 , make sure that you follow these steps:

    STEP 1 : Uninstalling SP1 using Programs and Features

    The easiest way to uninstall SP1 is using Programs and Features.

    1. Click the Start button Picture of the Start button, click Control Panel, click Programs, and then click Programs and Features.
    2. Click View installed updates.
    3. Click Service Pack for Microsoft Windows (KB 976932), and then click Uninstall.

      If you don’t see Service Pack for Microsoft Windows (KB 976932) in the list of installed updates, your computer likely came with SP1 already installed, and you can’t uninstall the service pack. If the service pack is listed but grayed out, you can’t uninstall the service pack.

    Uninstalling SP1 using the Command Prompt

    1. Click the Start button Picture of the Start button, and then, in the search box, type Command Prompt.
    2. In the list of results, right-click Command Prompt, and then click Run as administrator. Administrator permission required If you’re prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.
    3. Type the following: wusa.exe /uninstall /kb:976932
    4. Press the Enter key.

    Step 2: Back up your important files

    Back up your files to an external hard disk, DVD or CD, USB flash drive, or network folder. For information about how to back up your files, see Back up your files (http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows7/Back-up-your-files) .

    Step 3: Update device drivers

    Update device drivers as necessary. You can do this by using Windows Update in Control Panel or by going to the device manufacturer’s website. 

    Important If you are using an Intel integrated graphics device, you should be aware that there are known issues with certain versions of the Intel integrated graphics device driver and with D2D enabled applications, such as certain versions of Windows Live Mail. The versions of the Intel integrated graphics device driver that are known to be problematic are Igdkmd32.sys and Igdkmd64.sys versions 8.15.10.2104 through 8.15.10.2141. For more information about a known issue with these drivers and with Windows Live Mail, see Microsoft Knowledge Base article 2505524 (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2505524) .

    To check whether you are using the Intel integrated graphics device driver Igdkmd32.sys or Igdkmd64.sys versions 8.15.10.2104 through 8.15.10.2141, follow these steps: 

    1. Start DirectX Diagnostic Tool. To do this, click Start, type dxdiag in the Search programs and files box, and then press Enter.
    2. Click the Display tab.
    3. Note the driver and driver version.
    4. If you have the Intel integrated graphics driver Igdkmd32.sys or Igdkmd64.sys versions 8.15.10.2104 through 8.15.10.2141, visit the computer manufacturer’s website to see whether a newer driver is available, and then download and install that driver.

    Step 4: Install Windows Update KB2454826

     Install Windows Update KB2454826 from Windows Update (http://www.update.microsoft.com/)  if it is not already installed. If you install the service pack from the Microsoft Download Center and do not install Windows Update KB245862, you could encounter a Stop error in Windows in rare cases.

    Windows Update KB2454826 will automatically be installed when you install the service pack by using Windows Update. However, Windows Update KB2454826 is not automatically installed when you install the service pack from the Microsoft Download Center.

    To check whether Windows Update KB2454826 is installed, click Start, type View installed updates in the Search programs and files box, and then press Enter. Notice whether Update for Microsoft Windows (KB2454826) is listed. If the update is not listed, you will have to install it from Windows Update

    Step 5: Check for malware

    Check your computer for malware by using antivirus software. Some antivirus software is sold together with annual subscriptions that can be renewed as needed. However, much antivirus software is also available for free. Microsoft offers Microsoft Security Essentials, free antivirus software that you can download from the Microsoft Security Essentials (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=168949)  website. You can also visit the Microsoft Consumer security software providers (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=135654)  webpage to find third-party antivirus software.

    Important If your computer is infected with malware and you install Windows 7 SP1, you could encounter blue screens or a Windows Update error such as 8007f0f4 or FFFFFFFF. If malware is detected, Windows Update will be unable to install SP1.

    Microsoft Hyper-V Cloud Fast Track with Dell technology

    January 10, 2011 Leave a comment

    Curious about Cloud ?

    • Should you use public cloud offerings from providers, build your own private cloud, or develop a hybrid of both?
    • What cloud-based services are right for you?
    • What are the best practices and proven process for implementing cloud technologies that minimize risk and maximize success?

    Microsoft in partnership with Dell

    Microsoft Hyper-V Cloud Fast Track is a reference architecture for building private clouds that combines Dell technology, including servers, networking and storage, with Microsoft software, technical guidance and validated configurations.

    Hyper-V Cloud Fast Track solutions offer a turnkey approach to delivering scalable, preconfigured, validated infrastructure platforms for on-premises private cloud implementations. With local control over data and operations, your IT can dynamically pool, allocate, secure and manage resources for agile IaaS. Likewise, business units can deploy line-of-business applications with speed and consistency using self-provisioning and automated data center services in a virtualized environment.

    Hyper-V Cloud Fast Track solutions offer:

    • Faster deployment — Rich features and support make private clouds easy to deploy.
    • Reduced risk — Validated configurations mean you can implement with confidence.
    • Dell advantage — Dell provides business-ready configurations for virtualization that are optimized for Microsoft Hyper-V. 

    Dell Business-Ready Configurations for Microsoft Hyper-V Cloud Fast Track

    Dell offers a range of pre-engineered, business-ready configurations that conform to Microsoft’s Hyper-V Fast Track reference architecture:

    

    Best Windows Story contest‏ : you could win a copy of Windows 7 Ultimate

    December 23, 2010 Leave a comment

    Microsoft is giving away a copy of Windows 7 Ultimate to the ten (10) best Windows stories from IT Professionals. Stories can be related to how Windows 7 saved your company money, solving your application compatibility issues, deployment, management of your installations, and virtually anything else. The more compelling your story, the better chance you have to win.

    OFFICIAL RULES

    PLEASE NOTE:  It is your sole responsibility to review and understand your employer’s policies regarding your eligibility to participate in trade promotions.  If you are participating in violation of your employer’s policies, you may be disqualified from entering or receiving prizes.  Microsoft disclaims any and all liability or responsibility for disputes arising between an employee and their employer related to this matter, and prizes will only be awarded in compliance with the employer’s policies.

    GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES: Microsoft is committed to complying with government gift and ethics rules and therefore government employees are not eligible.

    This Contest is hosted in the United States, and entry information is collected on computers in the United States. This Contest will be governed by the laws of the State of Washington, and you consent to the exclusive jurisdiction and venue of the courts of the State of Washington for any disputes arising out of this Contest. If you do not agree with this provision and these Official Rules, please do not enter this Contest.

    COMMON TERMS USED IN THESE RULES:

    These are the official rules that govern how the Microsoft Best Windows Story contest promotion will operate (“Contest”). In these rules, “we,” “our,” and “us” refer to Microsoft Corporation, the sponsor of this Contest.  “You” refers to an eligible Contest entrant. 

    CONTEST DESCRIPTION: 

    This is a skill-based Contest. 

    The object of this Contest is to recognize your story about how implementing Windows 7 has helped your business. Stories can describe how Windows 7 saved your company money, solved for application compatibility issues, helped with deployment or management of your installations, or virtually anything else. For purposes of this Contest, each “story” you submit will be called an entry. All eligible entries received will be judged using the criteria described below to determine the winners of the prizes described below.

    WHAT ARE THE START AND END DATES?

    This Contest starts at 12:01 a.m. Pacific Time (PT) on December 15, 2010 and ends at 11:59 p.m. PT on January 31, 2011 (“Entry Period”).

    CAN I ENTER?

    You are eligible to enter this Contest if you meet the following requirements at time entry:

    • You are an IT Professional 18 years of age or older whose business has previously deployed Windows 7;  and
      • If you are 18 of age or older, but are considered a minor in your place of residence, you should ask your parent’s or legal guardian’s permission prior to submitting an entry into this Contest; and
    • You are NOT a resident of any of the following countries: Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria.
      • PLEASE NOTE: U.S. export regulations prohibit the export of goods and services to Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan and Syria. Therefore residents of these countries / regions are not eligible to participate.
    • You are NOT an employee of Microsoft Corporation or an employee of a Microsoft subsidiary; and
    • You are NOT involved in any part of the administration and execution of this Contest; and
    • You are NOT an immediate family (parent, sibling, spouse, child) or household member of a Microsoft employee, an employee of a Microsoft subsidiary, or a person involved in any part of the administration and execution of this Contest.

    This Contest is void outside the geographic area described above and wherever else prohibited by law.

    WHAT CONSTITUTES AN ELIGIBLE ENTRY?

     To be eligible for judging an entry must meet the following content / technical requirements:

    • Story must be no more than 2 double spaced pages with normal margins.
    • Story must be about how your business was helped by implementing Windows 7 or migrating to Windows 7 from Windows XP or Windows Vista.
    • Story must be written and submitted in English
    • Story must be submitted in .doc or .docx format to WinStory@microsoft.com no later than January 31, 2011 at midnight Pacific time.

    In addition:

    • your entry must be your own original work; and
    • your entry cannot have been selected as a winner in any other contest; and
    • you must have obtained any and all consents, approvals or licenses required for you to submit your entry; and
    • your entry must not otherwise violate the rights of any other person or company by using their trademarks, music, logos, names or images without their express written consent.

    Entries may NOT contain, as determined by us, in our sole and absolute discretion, any content that:

    • is sexually explicit, unnecessarily violent or derogatory of any ethnic, racial, gender, religious, professional or age group; profane or pornographic;
    • promotes alcohol, illegal drugs, tobacco, firearms/weapons (or the use of any of the foregoing) or a particular political agenda;
    • is obscene or offensive;
    • defames, misrepresents or contains disparaging remarks about other people or companies;
    • communicates messages or images inconsistent with the positive images and/or good will to which we wish to associate; and/or violates any law;

    We reserve the right to reject any entry, in our sole and absolute discretion, that we determine does not meet the above criteria.

    HOW WILL MY ENTRY BE POTENTIALLY USED?

    Other than what is set forth below, we are not claiming any ownership rights to your entry.  However, by submitting your entry, you:

    • are granting us an irrevocable, royalty-free, worldwide right and license to: (i) use, review, assess, test and otherwise analyze your entry and all its content in connection with this Contest; and (ii) feature your entry and all content in connection with the marketing, sale, or promotion of this Contest (including but not limited to internal and external sales meetings, conference presentations, tradeshows, and screen shots of the Contest entry in press releases) in all media (now known or later developed)
    • agree to sign any necessary documentation that may be required for us and our designees to make use of the rights you granted above;
    • understand and acknowledge that the Promotion Parties may have developed or commissioned materials similar or identical to your submission and you waive any claims you may have resulting from any similarities to your entry; 
    • understand that we cannot control the incoming information you will disclose to our representatives in the course of entering, or what our representatives will remember about your entry. You also understand that we will not restrict work assignments of representatives who have had access to your entry.  By entering this Contest, you agree that use of information in our representatives’ unaided memories in the development or deployment of our products or services does not create liability for us under this agreement or copyright or trade secret law; 
    • understand that you will not receive any compensation or credit for use of your entry, other than what is described in these Official Rules

    Please note that following the end of this Contest your entry may be posted on a website selected by us for viewing by visitors to that website.  We are not responsible for any unauthorized use of your entry by visitors to this website.  While we reserve these rights, we are not obligated to use your entry for any purpose, even if it has been selected as a winning entry.

    If you do not want to grant us these rights to your entry, please do not enter this Contest.

    HOW DO I ENTER?

    To enter, send an email to WinStory@microsoft.com. Emails must include your story as an attachment and your contact information including first/last name, business, and email address.

    By submitting your story, you will receive one (1) entry into the Contest.

    We will only accept one (1) entry per person.

    We are not responsible for entries that we do not receive for any reason, or for entries that we receive but are not decipherable for any reason.

    We will automatically disqualify:

    • Any incomplete or illegible entry; and
    • Any entries that we receive from you that are in excess of the entry limit described above.

    WINNER DETERMINATION AND PRIZES

    On or around February 28, 2011, a panel of judges will review all eligible entries received and select ten (10) winners of the Contest Prizes described below based upon judging criteria described below.

    Judging Criteria

    • 25% – Compelling story about the value Windows 7 provides to your organization
    • 25% – Ability to overcome migration or deployment challenges
    • 25% – Solutions used to overcome challenges
    • 25% – Ability to clearly document your story

    The decisions of the judges are final and binding.  If we do not receive a sufficient number of entries meeting the entry requirements, we may, at our discretion, select fewer winners than described above.

    In the event of a tie between any eligible entries, an additional judge will break the tie based on the judging criteria described above.  The decisions of the judges are final and binding.  If we do not receive a sufficient number of entries meeting the entry requirements, we may, at our discretion, select fewer winners than the number of Contest Prizes described below.

    Contest Prizes

    Ten (10) Grand Prize. A Not for Resale English version of Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate. Approximate Retail Value (ARV) $299.99.

    The total Approximate Retail Value (ARV) of all prizes: $2999.90

    We will only award one (1) prize per person.

    If you are a potential winner, we will notify you by sending a message to the e-mail address, the phone number, or mailing address (if any) provided at time of entry within seven (7) days following completion of judging.  If the notification that we send is returned as undeliverable, or you are otherwise unreachable for any reason, we may award to a runner-up.

    If there is a dispute as to who is the potential winner, we will consider the potential winner to be the authorized account holder of the e-mail address used to enter the Contest. If you are a potential winner, we may require you to sign an Affidavit of Eligibility, Liability/Publicity Release and a W-9 tax form or W-8 BEN tax form within 10 days of notification. If you are a potential winner and you are 18 or older, but are considered a minor in your place of legal residence, we may require your parent or legal guardian to sign all required forms on your behalf.  If you do not complete the required forms as instructed and/or return the required forms within the time period listed on the winner notification message, we may disqualify you and select a runner-up.

    If you are confirmed as a winner of this Contest:

    • You may not exchange your prize for cash or any other merchandise or services.  However, if for any reason an advertised prize is unavailable, we reserve the right to substitute a prize of equal or greater value; and
    • You may not designate someone else as the winner.  If you are unable or unwilling to accept your prize, we may award it to a runner up; and
    • If you accept a prize, you will be solely responsible for all applicable taxes related to accepting the prize; and
    • If you are otherwise eligible for this Contest, but are considered a minor in your place of residence, we may award the prize to your parent/legal guardian on your behalf; and
    • Unless otherwise noted, all prizes are subject to their manufacturer’s warranty and / or terms and conditions. 

    WHAT OTHER CONDITIONS AM I AGREEING TO BY ENTERING?

    By entering this Contest you agree:

    • To abide by these Official Rules; and
    • To release and hold harmless Microsoft and its respective parents, subsidiaries, affiliates, employees and agents from any and all liability or any injury, loss or damage of any kind arising from or in connection with this Contest, or any prize won; and
    • That Microsoft’s decisions will be final and binding on all matters related to this Contest; and
    • That, by accepting a prize, Microsoft may use of your proper name and state of residence online and in print, or in any other media, in connection with this Contest, without payment or compensation to you, except where prohibited by law.

    WHAT LAWS GOVERN THE WAY THIS CONTEST IS EXECUTED AND ADMINISTRATED?

    This Contest will be governed by the laws of the State of Washington, and you consent to the exclusive jurisdiction and venue of the courts of the State of Washington for any disputes arising out of this Contest.  

    WHAT IF SOMETHING UNEXPECTED HAPPENS AND THE CONTEST CAN’T RUN AS PLANNED?

    If someone cheats, or a virus, bug, catastrophic event, or any other unforeseen or unexpected event that cannot be reasonably anticipated or controlled, (also referred to as force majeure) affects the fairness and / or integrity of this Contest, we reserve the right to cancel, change or suspend this Contest.  This right is reserved whether the event is due to human or technical error. If a solution cannot be found to restore the integrity of the Contest, we reserve the right to select winners from among all eligible entries received before we had to cancel, change or suspend the Contest.

    If you attempt to compromise the integrity or the legitimate operation of this Contest by hacking or by cheating or committing fraud in ANY way, we may seek damages from you to the fullest extent permitted by law.  Further, we may ban you from participating in any of our future Contest, so please play fairly.

    HOW CAN I FIND OUT WHO WON?

    To request a winners list, please send an email to WinStory@microsoft.com and we will provide you with a list of winner who received a prize worth $25.00 or more. This list will be available until March 31, 2011.

    WHO IS SPONSORING THIS CONTEST?

    Microsoft Corporation
    One Microsoft Way
    Redmond, WA 98052