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Posts Tagged ‘Windows 8’

FREE Microsoft MVP Event Australia and New Zealand. March 2014. Register Now

March 6, 2014 Leave a comment

The FREE MVP Community Camp (ComCamp) is a six-day event with both Live Webcasts and In-Person Seminars. MVPs from nine countries will deliver webcasts available to anyone anywhere to learn trends and techniques from these industry leaders; the in-person seminars will be available in 22 cities across seven countries with tracks providing opportunities to connect with others in the same expertise/interest area and to have a number of technology hands-on experiences.

Delivered by MVPs who not only possess the expert knowledge in their field but also have been influential technical leaders to IT community and audiences. Each session is 60 minutes long and includes Q&A to help you get an instant feedback on questions you have had during the session.  Between each session, 15 minutes break is given for MVPs and community members to network, share their thoughts on topics presented and share technical experiences.

There are sessions happening in the principal cities of Australia : Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Adelaide and New Zealand. Make sure you register early to secure your spot.

Registration links:

 

Countdown for XP End Of Support started. Where do I start?

April 10, 2013 Leave a comment

Microsoft will end Extended Support on April 8, 2014: no new updates will be released after this date.

If your organization has not started the migration to a modern desktop, you are late. Based on historical customer deployment data, the average enterprise deployment can take 18 to 32 months from business case through full deployment. To ensure you remain on supported versions of Windows and Office, you should begin your planning and application testing immediately to ensure you deploy before end of support.

After April 8, 2014, there will be no new security updates, non-security hotfixes, free or paid assisted support options or online technical content updates. Running Windows XP/SP1/SP2 or even SP3 and Office 2003 in your environment after their end of support date may expose your company to potential risks, such as:

  • Security & Compliance Risks: Unsupported and unpatched environments are vulnerable to security risks. This may result in an officially recognized control failure by an internal or external audit body, leading to suspension of certifications, and/or public notification of the organization’s inability to maintain its systems and customer information.
  • Lack of Independent Software Vendor (ISV) & Hardware Manufacturers support: Back in 2011, many independent software vendors (ISVs) were already unlikely to support new versions of applications on Windows XP.

Where do I start?

There is no upgrade path. You will need to do a clean install. This means you will need to migrate the users’ data and reinstall or repackage all their applications for the new OS. This will take some time to test all of the hardware, peripherals and applications to ensure they will work with Windows 7 or Windows 8.

Visit The Springboard Series on TechNet to learn how to Explore, Plan, Deliver, Operate and Support Windows 7 and 8 in your environment.

Here are some other tools to help make your move from easier:

 Source and more info: http://blogs.windows.com/windows/b/springboard/archive/2013/04/08/365-days-remaining-until-xp-end-of-support-the-countdown-begins.aspx

Windows 8 available for download

August 16, 2012 Leave a comment

Windows 8 and Windows 8 Enterprise RTM 90-Day Evals Available Now Open!

System Requirements

Windows 8 works on the same hardware that powers Windows 7:

  • Processor:1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster
  • RAM:1 gigabyte (GB) (32-bit) or 2 GB (64-bit)
  • Hard disk space:20 GB
  • Graphics card: Microsoft DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM driver

Additional requirements to use certain features:

  • To use touch, you need a tablet or a monitor that supports multitouch.
  • To access the Windows Store and to download and run apps, you need an active Internet connection and a screen resolution of at least 1024 x 768.
  • To snap apps, you need a screen resolution of at least 1366 x 768.
  • Internet access (ISP fees might apply)
Download the 32-bit (x86) version:Download Windows 8 Enterprise Evaluation for developers Download the 64-bit (x64) version:Download Windows 8 Enterprise Evaluation for developers

Windows 2012 Hyper-V RTM to be released first week of August 2012

July 10, 2012 Leave a comment

Microsoft announced at WPC in Toronto, both server and client announced RTM (first week of August) and GA(Sept for Server, Oct for client) timing publicly:

“Windows 8/Windows 2012 is on track to Release to Manufacturing (RTM) the first week of August. For enterprise customers with Software Assurance benefits, they will have full access to Windows 8 bits as early as August. Additionally, she noted that RTM is when we’ll be turning on the commerce platform so that developers can start earning money for their apps ”

More info: http://windowsteamblog.com/windows/b/bloggingwindows/archive/2012/07/09/upcoming-windows-milestones-shared-with-partners-at-wpc.aspx

 

SYSRET 64-bit OS privilege vulnerability on Intel, DOES NOT AFFECT HYPER-V

June 18, 2012 1 comment

 

Last week US-CERT warned of guest-to-host VM escape vulnerability and it was reported that an issue on Intel based servers could lead to a “break out” from a VM to the host in certain virtualisation products, including Microsoft : “A ring3 attacker may be able to specifically craft a stack frame to be executed by ring0 (kernel) after a general protection exception (#GP). The fault will be handled before the stack switch, which means the exception handler will be run at ring0 with an attacker’s chosen RSP causing a privilege escalation” : http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/649219
Affected vendors include Intel Corp., FreeBSD, Microsoft, NetBSD, Oracle, RedHat, SUSE Linux and Xen.

But Hyper-V is NOT Affected By VU#649219 VM “Break Out”.

I’ve asked the Microsoft Hyper-V product team Redmond if Hyper-V was actually affected and as per their answer:

•The problem does affect the 64-bit OS’s on Intel hardware, but Hyper-V is not affected.

•This problem will not lead to break outs from Hyper-V VMs.

•Windows 8  is not affected

•Windows Server 2012 is not affected.

This was covered as well by Aidan Finn : http://www.aidanfinn.com/?p=12838

Windows Server 2012: Hyper-V Network Virtualization

April 24, 2012 2 comments

Hyper-V Network Virtualization allow customers to keep their own internal IP addresses when moving to the cloud while providing isolation from other customers’ VMs – even if those VMs happen to use the exact same IP addresses.

The way it works is that each VM receive two IP addresses :

The first one, the IP address visible in the VM, is relevant in the context of a given tenant’s virtual subnet. Following the IEEE nomenclature we call this the Customer Address (CA).

The other IP address is relevant in the context of the physical network in the cloud datacenter. This is called the Provider Address (PA).  This decoupling of tenant and datacenter IP addresses provides many benefits.
One of the benefits is that you can move your VMs to the cloud without modifying the VM’s network configuration and without worrying about what else (or who else) is sitting in that datacentre.

Another big reason is the policy enforcement in the end hosts that provides a scalable solution for multi-tenant isolation, instead of using Vlan’s, for isolation.

There are 2 different mechanisms to virtualize the IP address:

Generic Routing Encapsulation (GRE) : should be used for network virtualization, because it provides the most flexibility and performance. It will be used for most environments/deployments

IP Rewrite : may be appropriate to provide performance and compatibility in some current high-capacity datacenters.

 

A very good article was posted by Jeffrey about this topic

http://blogs.technet.com/b/windowsserver/archive/2012/04/16/introducing-windows-server-8-hyper-v-network-virtualization-enabling-rapid-migration-and-workload-isolation-in-the-cloud.aspx

 

Windows 8 : Why should my hardware have SR-IOV capabality ?

April 4, 2012 1 comment

Single Root I/O Virtualization (SR-IOV)

SR-IOV capability will significantly reduce the overhead on network IO operations.

It allows for a virtual machine to have near native IO against the physical NIC, allowing applications that require very low latency to work inside of virtual machines.

What does it require?

  • It must bypass teaming
  • Interrupt and DMA remapping
  • Access Control Services (ACS) on PCIe root ports
  • Alternative Routing ID Interpretation (ARI)
  • Hardware virtualization, EPT or NPT

Where to create:

– In the Hyper-V Manager, click on Virtual Switch Manager on the right panel

– Click Add New Virtual Switch

– Type the name of the virtual switch

– Tick box for Enable Single Root I/O virtualization (SR-IOV)

IMPORTANT :

More about SR-IOV here : SR-IOV feature (Single Root – I/O Virtualization)

Microsoft SR-IOV Support on Dell PowerEdge Servers (source : http://en.community.dell.com/techcenter/os-applications/w/wiki/3459.dell-supported-platforms-for-windows-server-8-sr-iov-feature.aspx):

Dell PowerEdge 12th Generation servers support the SR-IOV servers but previous generations have exceptions.

Below is a list of Dell 11th Generation platforms that support the SR-IOV feature:

  • R910

The following platforms are also supported and must be an 11G Generation II server:

  • T410, R410, R510, R610, T610, R710, T710.

How to identify an 11G Generation II system:

  1. These servers will be physically marked with symbol “II” on the Express service tag.  The Express service tag is located in front panel of the system.
  2. These systems support Intel 56XX (Westmere) processors
  3. The System Revision Field in the iDRAC GUI will have “II”

Supported SR-IOV network cards:

  • Intel X520 10GB Ethernet adapters.

Because Windows Server 8 Beta is a pre-release product still in active development, Dell does not provide any support for this pre-release software and it is not recommended for use in a production environment.

Windows Server 2012/R2 and NIC teaming modes and how to

April 2, 2012 8 comments

NIC teaming, the new feature of Windows 2012/R2, allows multiple network adapters on a computer to be placed into a team for the following purposes:

  • Bandwidth aggregation

– Traffic failover to prevent connectivity loss in the event of a network component failure

Modes:

  • Generic or static teaming (IEEE 802.3ad draft v1): This mode requires configuration on the switch and the computer to identify which links form the team. Because this is a statically configured solution, no additional protocol assists the switch and the computer to identify incorrectly plugged cables or other errors that could cause the team to fail. This mode is typically supported by server-class switches.
  • Dynamic teaming (IEEE 802.1ax, LACP): IEEE 802.1ax uses the Link Aggregation Control Protocol (LACP) to dynamically identify links between the computer and a specific switch. This enables the automatic creation of a team and, in theory, the expansion and reduction of a team simply by the transmission or receipt of LACP from the peer network adapter. Typical server-class switches support IEEE 802.1ax, but most switches require manual administration to enable LACP on the port.
  • Switch independent: do not require that the team members connect to different switches, they merely make it possible.

Characteristics:

  • It is manageable through both PowerShell and the GUI
  • Supported on various NIC types/vendors
  • You can team up to 32 NICs
  • Unlimited virtual interfaces
  • Multiple teaming modes
  • NIC teams can only be formed between homogenous NICs. So two 1GB NICs can be teamed, or two 10GB NICs can be teamed, but you cannot team a 1GB and 10GB NIC.
  • If the individual NIC  support Receive Side Scaling (RSS), the NIC team also supports RSS. Hence it is a good idea to team NICs  that support RSS. The resulting NIC team is also highly capable and does not lose any functionality.
  • If the individual NIC  supports RDMA, the resulting NIC team does NOT support RDMA. Given how Windows 8 SMB 2.2 natively supports RDMA without modifying applications, it is a bad idea to team NICs with RDMA capabilities, and where the interconnect (routers, etc) also supports RDMA

How to:

Using Powershell:

  • Static

New-NetLbfoTeam -Name “Team-Static” -TeamMembers NIC1,NIC2 -TeamingMode Static

  • Dynamic

New-NetLbfoTeam -Name “Team-Static” -TeamMembers NIC1,NIC2 -TeamingMode Lacp

  • Switch Independent

New-NetLbfoTeam -Name “Team-Independent” -TeamMembers NIC1,NIC2 –TeamingMode SwitchIndependent

More Power Shell Commands:

  • To get the Teaming proprieties and settings in PowerShell:

Get-NetLbfoTeam

  • To get all of the PowerShell commands available for NetLBFO

Get-Command -Module NetLbfo

Using GUI:

  1. Open Server Manager.
  2. In the console tree, click Local Server.
  3. In the details pane, in the Properties section, click NIC Teaming Administration under Remote Desktop.
  4. In the NIC Teaming Window, select the NIC’s to team on the bottom right on the screen
  5. Right click and select add to new team
  6. In the new team window, provide the name of the nic team(e.g. team-static)
  7. Expand the additional properties and select the team mode
  8. click OK to finalise and create the nic team.

Now you are ready to create the Hyper-v Network Switch by using the NIC team.

 

Understanding SR-IOV in Hyper-V

March 27, 2012 1 comment
Categories: Virtualization Tags: , ,

Windows 8 Hyper-V : Powershell script to create vm’s based on csv file

March 3, 2012 Leave a comment

This is my first PowerShell 3.0 script to create Virtual Machine based on .csv file which contains the necessary information.

I created this script when in the Hands on Hyper-V PowerShell session at the MVP Global Summit, in Redmond.

Save the following .csv file ( I saved it on c:\vms )

OperatingSystem,MinimumMemoryMB,RecommendMemoryMB,BaseVhdPath Win7,512,1024,c:\VHD\7601.17514.101119-1850_x86fre_Enterprise_en-us_VL.vhd 2008R2,1024,2048,c:\VHD\WS2008R2_Enterprise_x64.vhd

——————————

Here is the Powershell script:

$vms={}

$vms=import-csv C:\vms\OperatingSystems.csv

foreach ($vm in $vms) {

#this command creates the VM with the recommend memory

New-VM -Name $vm.operatingsystem -MemoryStartupBytes $vm.RecommendedMemoryMB

# this command set’s the minimum memory for the OS

Set-Vm -Name $vm.operatingsystem -MemoryMinimumBytes $vm.MinimumMemoryMB

#how cool is the new command to extract the path and join to a new string…

$vhpath= join-path (Split-Path $vm.basevhdpath -Parent) -ChildPath ($vm.operatingsystem+’Diff.vhdx’)

#this command create a new differencing disk and attach it to a vm

New-VHD –ParentPath $vm.BaseVhdPath –Path $vhdpath -Differencing Add-VMHardDiskDrive -VMName $vm.operatingsystem -Path c:\vhd\Diff.vhdx

}