Hyperbole, Embellishment, and Systems Administration Blog

Nov 19, 2010
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System Center Opalis 6.3 Released

System Center Opalis allows you create automated workflows to integrate all aspects of System Center (and beyond)....More
Nov 15, 2010
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System Center Ops Mgr, Config Mgr and the Ribbon 1

The new versions of Ops Mgr and Config Mgr will use the Ribbon interface. This is the way of the future....More
Oct 11, 2010
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Stop Windows Checking For A Solution To The Problem

How To Stop Windows Checking For A Solution To The Problem...More
Sep 29, 2010
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Rather than a full system restore, I just booted from the backup VHD.

Boot to VHD is one of those cool Windows 7 / Windows Server 2008 R2 features that most people don’t use because it involves faffing about with BCDedit and ugly GUIDs. Did you know you could use it to boot into a backup image of your system as well?...More
Sep 22, 2010
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Should you have an "Internet Birthday"

Social networks encourage us to give birthday information, mostly so our friends can see it and wish us happy birthday. Identity thieves harvest this information for their own nefarious purposes. If you want to post birthday info to social networks, why not use an "Internet Birthday" - you still get the birthday wishes, but flummox the identity thieves. ...More
Sep 21, 2010
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Quick How-To: Managed Service Accounts

Want to use custom service accounts, but don't want to go through the hassle of managing passwords for those accounts. Windows Server 2008 R2 supports managed service accounts - custom service accounts that automatically change their passwords....More
Sep 10, 2010
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Touchscreen, extended desktops, and cursor on wrong monitor 1

Touchscreen cursor turning up on the wrong monitor in extended configuration? ...More
Sep 7, 2010
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Certification, Culture, and the Availability of Systems Administrators 1

Perhaps it is easier to find a Windows administrators because Microsoft promotes certification while most Linux administrators think it is a waste of time....More
Aug 9, 2010
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How certification can still be relevant a decade into your career. 1

There are benefits to pursuing certification, even if you've been a systems administrator for over a decade....More
Aug 2, 2010
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Sysadmins as Sisyphus 1

At time the tasks of systems administration can seem like the task of Sisyphus,. the figure from Greek mythology, punished by Zeus and condemned to eternally push a boulder up a hill only to have to watch it roll back down....More
Jul 26, 2010
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Derelict Administrator Accounts: A Millennium Falcon Problem 2

At the start of The Empire Strikes Back Han Solo gets snarky with Chewbacca because the Wookie starts doing maintenance on a component of the Millennium Falcon that hadn’t actually failed yet. That’s how a lot of sysadmins feel about messing with things in the entrails of the network. If it isn’t yet a problem, don’t mess with it....More
Jun 27, 2010
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Configuring Active Directory Certificate Services to support Subject Alternative Names

With the use of a single command, you can reconfigure Active Directory Certificate Services to support certificates with Subject Alternative Names (SAN)....More
Jun 14, 2010
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Corporate Network iPad 1

Already staff in IT departments across the planet are being be confronted by people who have just purchased an iPad. People who want to use that iPad in some way to do something that is work related.  Anything that is work related. Because if they are doing SERIOUS WORK with their iPad it goes from being the affectation of a cyber-dilettante to a must-have-productivity-item of the on-the-go information-worker....More
May 25, 2010
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Next version of SCCM embraces Role Based Access Control and BranchCache

The next version of SCCM uses role based security and integrates fully with BranchCache....More
Apr 26, 2010
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Are NTFS and Share Permissions a bit too complicated? 1

Most administrators know that NTFS permissions combine with Share Permissions. A surprising number of them still get things tangled up when working out effective permissions....More
Mar 6, 2010
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Capitals, Symbols, Numerals, and Whimsy

I once heard a person complain that developing the perfect complex password was the only way they could expressing their individual creativity in the homogenous locked down corporate soul crushing prison of the standard operating system environment. Passwords are, to mangle a quote from Churchill, a terrible solution to the problem of authentication, except all the other ones we’ve tried....More
Feb 9, 2010
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Top Reasons to Use BitLocker and BitLocker To Go 1

  Approximately 60% of all computers sold today are portable computers. An old truism of computer security is that if an attacker has physical access to a computer, that attacker has access to all the data on that computer. This truism, combined with the prevalence of portable computers in organizational environments, makes life more challenging for today’s IT security professional.  Fifteen years ago, it was unusual for someone to take his or her work computer out of the office in the evening. Today many workers expect to have to take their computer with them when they leave for the day. The problem this poses for IT security professionals is that laptop computers are more easily lost or stolen than desktop computers. Laptop computers can contain tens of gigabytes of organizational data. Tens of gigabytes that may end up in the hands of an unauthorized third party if that laptop computer is left at an airport security checkpoint or is stolen from a bag while the worker is commuting on public transport. A recent survey by the Ponemon institute found that roughly 5000 laptop computers are left at US airport security screening checkpoints each week. Two thirds of these laptop computers are never recovered and are sold by the airports at auction. Another study of small to medium sized enterprises found that, on average, a portable computer was lost from a SME every four months. The average cost to the organization of one of these lost computers was $50,000 USD. The main cost to the organization is not replacing the hardware or the lost productivity, but the cost of working out what data may have been lost and the effect that may have if that data was recovered by a competing organization. The primary reason you want to use BitLocker and BitLocker to go on the computers in your organization is to minimize the chance that useful data can be recovered from lost storage devices by a third party. Minimizing the recoverability of data so that only authorized persons can...More
What's Hyperbole, Embellishment, and Systems Administration Blog?

IT pro Orin Thomas provides true tales, snafus, news, and urban legends for Microsoft Windows system administrators.

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Orin Thomas

Orin Thomas is a contributing editor for Windows IT Pro and a Windows Security MVP. He has authored or coauthored more than a dozen books for Microsoft Press, and he writes the Hyperbole,...
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