Orin Thomas


Orin Thomas is an MVP, an MCT, a Microsoft Regional Director, and has a string of Microsoft MCSE and MCITP certifications. He has written more than 30 books for Microsoft Press on IT Pro topics including Windows Server, Windows Client, SQL Server, Exchange, and System Center. He is an author at PluralSight and is a contributing editor for Windows IT Pro. He writes the Hyperbole, Embellishment, and Systems Administration Blog. He has been working in IT since the early 1990's and regularly speaks at conferences in Australia and around the world. Follow him on twitter.

The Millennium Falcon Rule: If It Is Working ... 1
Many sysadmins have the same attitude towards the networks they manage that Han Solo has towards the Millennium Falcon. The cardinal rule is “if it is currently working, don’t mess with it.”
The IT Pro as Sisyphus.
Sisyphus was the figure from Greek mythology whose punishment for avarice was to roll a boulder up a hill, only to watch it roll back down to the base where he’d need to repeat the task. There are parallels with Sisyphus when it comes to IT Pros and the knowledge required to stay near the top of your game in the industry.
Assessing your organization’s DFS deployment
Although the setup looks the same and the topology options remain familiar for those that have deployed DFS with Windows Server 2003, there have been substantial improvements with DFS with the releases of Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server 2012 R2.
Server 2003 Anti-Malware Migration 1
Many organizations deploy anti-malware software to servers as well as clients. Upgrading from Server 2003 to Server 2012 R2 gives you a chance to re-evaluate your organization’s server anti-malware solution.
Should IT Pros be excluded from BYOD? 3
IT Pros, by their nature, are highly computer literate. They know how to manage their computers, why not allow them to bring their own laptops to the office and use them for work?
Migrating WSUS From Server 2003 to Server 2012 R2
You can migrate a WSUS deployment hosted on Windows Server 2003 to a server running Windows Server 2012 R2 as long as you follow a particular set of steps.
Assessing WSUS Infrastructure
Most networks with Windows Server 2003 deployed have a couple of WSUS servers deployed. Prior to migrating to Server 2012 R2, you should evaluate your WSUS infrastructure and decide how to transition WSUS so that it is hosted on the new operating system.
The most important skill to pick up after migrating from Windows Server 2003
Chances are that if a big part of your organization’s environment involves Windows Server 2003, then you’ve probably not spent much time exploring PowerShell. And at this point, you’re probably tired of people talking about how you should get around to learning PowerShell.
Improving Windows Firewall Configuration
When migrating from Windows Server 2003 to Windows Server 2012 R2, you should take some time do reassess the way that client firewalls are configured for the servers in your organization. The uncomfortable reality is that on many internal organizational networks, server (and client) firewalls are disabled entirely.
Part of the near future has a Raspberry flavor
Like many others, I picked up a Raspberry Pi 2 in the last few weeks. I didn’t get around to buying the first one so I’m a little late to this particular bandwagon. But after hearing that Windows would be released for the Pi 2, I thought “that actually sounds like it might be cool”.
2003 Migration and Domain Isolation Policies
You’re migrating from Server 2003 to Server 2012 R2, why not take the opportunity to enhance security with domain isolation policies?
Migrating computer accounts from a Server 2003 to a Server 2012 R2 forest
When performing a forest migration from a Server 2003 to a Server 2012 R2 forest, you could manually remove each computer from the source forest and then manually join it to the destination forest.
So why are so many people still using Windows Server 2003 anyway? 5
A good mate said to me the other day “tell a bloke in 2003 that he’ll get 12 years work out of a computer and he’ll be pleased. But in 2015 if you tell him the same computer needs to be replaced it’s worked well for 12 years and he’ll be annoyed”
Windows Server 2003 Migration: Cross Forest Account Migration
If you’ve chosen to migrate from an existing Windows Server 2003 forest to a new forest running the Windows Server 2012 R2 operating system, one of the things that you’ll need to deal with is account migration. Microsoft has a special tool that is freely available called the Active Directory Migration Tool (ADMT) to assist with this process.
Windows Server vNext: A giant leap rather than a small step?
A recent presentation by Jeffrey Snover reinforces that Server vNext isn’t a small step up from Windows Server 2012 R2, it’s actually a giant leap up from Server 2012 R2.
So why are so many people still using Windows Server 2003 anyway?
February 17, 2015

Thanks for the comments! What you are saying doesn't surprise me, but I may reference them in a future article on this issue.

Great products need great documentation
February 10, 2015

Alas the cost of creating great documentation is usually a lot higher than the revenue gained from publishing it as a separate product. That's why you rarely see great...

IT Pros and Structured Learning
February 6, 2015

An advantage of classroom learning is that it gets people out of the work environment so that they can actually get some learning time. ;-)

Microsoft Delays Windows 10 Server Until 2016
January 30, 2015

It's depressing because there are many features that have been promoted, such as JIT admin, that aren't present in the current TP.

Also, put me down as a vote for...

Missing in Action: Windows 10 Server
January 22, 2015

Looking forward to seeing features like JIT administration - something that we won't be able to play with until we can run a domain at the vNext functional level.

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