I hate feeling like I'm stupid. I mean, I know that I'm smart--really smart (not to mention funny--and humble). So when I come across something I don't know or don't understand in an area that I feel pretty knowledgeable about, it bothers me. Oh, does it ever. I get embarrassed, afraid that anyone who witnessed my inadequacy will think less of me. But it's really not such a big deal, because I don't get paid to know those things, and no harm comes from me not knowing those things. (Well, my pride is hurt a little bit, but it's got a few bruises already--one more couldn't make that big of a difference.)

But it is your job to know everything about the IT industry. You do have to know everything--I mean EVERYTHING--about your field. So I suspect that your reaction to not knowing something that you're expected to might be a tad similar to mine, except yours could include losing money, your reputation, or even your job. Your stakes are just a little higher than mine.

So here I am again, hoping that I can be of some assistance. I thought I could give you some tips about the articles a lot of your peers have viewed this past month and offer some supplemental resources. When I looked at the list of popular articles, I found that most readers were looking at content on fundamental topics you need every day, such as command line prompt tricks and an overview on Active Directory (AD). (OK, fine. You're right, a lot of people are reading up on Windows Vista, but I thought I might take one month off from talking about Vista. Can't I do that? If you somehow don't have your fill this month and want some more articles on it, take a look at Windows IT Pro's January 2007 cover story. ) So I found some great Windows IT Pro resources to give you more useful solutions on these two topics. You see how smart I am? I told you.
—Christan Humphries

What Is Everyone Looking At?


Check out some of the most popular articles on our Web site, and get more in-depth solutions from our archive of articles and tips. I’m here to do the research and find the materials so that you can save some time and do your work instead of sifting through a bunch of search results.

Readers requested:
"Command Prompt Tricks," InstantDoc ID 16412

Related resources:
In "Command Prompt Tricks," one reader discusses the Net Use command. So I have this bright idea to point you to some more resources about Net Use and its usage tricks. Smart.

"How can I force a net use command to remember the credentials to use for a server?" InstantDoc ID 53920
Apparently, every time you use the Net Use command, you have to enter credentials. Now, that would just really annoy me. And it must have annoyed a reader just as much to ask for some kind of solution. John Savill offers a solution, and readers have added some comments.

"Get the Most Out of Net Use," InstantDoc ID 50125
From what I've read, Net Use is a pretty common command-line tool that most everyone uses. But just because you use it all the time doesn't mean that you know everything there is to know about Net Use. In this article, Mark Minasi "drills down into the mechanics of Net Use" and offers some helpful hints for using the tool.

Readers requested:
"Active Directory: An Overview" http://www.windowsitlibrary.com/Content/155/07/toc.html

Related resources:
"The Essential Guide to AD Management" http://www.windowsitpro.com/essential/index.cfm?fuseaction=show&guid=0d63d17d-2f3b-4524-9593-ddd810f08f16
The AD overview readers are viewing is only one chapter of a resource, so it might not cover everything you need to know about AD. The "Essential Guide to Active Directory Management" focuses on AD implementation and management.

"Domain Name Services Basics" http://www.windowsitlibrary.com/Content/212/03/toc.html
AD can't function without Domain Name Services (DNS). I know that only because I read the AD overview that everybody else is reading. So if you read the AD overview and understand it, you're only halfway there. This resource from our Windows IT Pro Library reviews how to install, configure, and monitor DNS.

"What do these DNS terms mean?" Forum Thread http://forums.windowsitpro.com/web/forum/messageview.aspx?catid=37&threadid=5682&enterthread=y
Here's a great thread that explains the difference between Authoritative and Primary DNS servers. Don't ask me; just go read the thread.

That’s What They Say


Here are some suggestions from people who actually know what they’re talking about—and probably won’t be sarcastic like me: our subject matter experts. They know you work hard to stay up to date in all of the IT areas and it's difficult for you to decide which resources to read.

Group Policy
Caroline Marwitz, our AD editor, wanted you to know about a great article: "Troubleshooting Group Policy," by Darren Mar-Elia, InstantDoc ID 92759 Caroline says, “Group Policy has so many moving parts, there's always room for something to go wrong. That's why I chose Darren's article: It offers a quick, step-by-step guide that helps you troubleshoot Group Policy.”
—Caroline Marwitz

Active Directory
Another of Caroline’s picks is "Diagnose AD Performance Problems," by Gil Kirkpatrick, InstantDoc ID 93949 Caroline chose this article because, “Gil talks about a great Microsoft tool that helps you figure out why your server is not performing. The tool is called Windows Server 2003 Performance Advisor (SPA). He gives a clear, step-by-step method for using the tool and for interpreting its reports.”
—Caroline Marwitz

SQL Server
Our SQL Server BI editor, Dawn Cyr, found a great article: "Take Control of Your Reports with ReportViewer," parts 1 and 2, InstantDoc IDs 92970 and 93554. Dawn says, “The ReportViewer control in Visual Studio 2005 is a powerful tool for integrating SQL Server Reporting Services reports into Windows and Web form applications. The control lets you easily display reports from a Reporting Services report server or create local reports that are compiled and distributed with your application. And, if you're willing to write a little Visual Basic .NET or Visual C# code, you can extend the control's functionality to store local report definitions outside the application so that you can add new reports or update exisiting reports without having to recompile and redistributre the application. This two-part series will introduce you to the possibilities of the ReportViewer.”
—Dawn Cyr

Mobile and Wireless
Megan Bearly, whose specialty is mobility, picked “More BlackBerry 4.0 Tips and Tricks,” InstantDoc ID 50169 Megan wanted you to know about this article because “the author talks about sources of valuable data relevant to BlackBerry administration. This article is great because it goes over some things that BlackBerry administrators can do to manage their user's BlackBerrys.”
—Megan Bearly

"Sizing Up the IT Community,” InstantDoc ID 93975
Jason Bovberg is not only our networking and hardware editor, but Jason also has an affinity to the community (not to mention a passion for home technology). Jason says, “I’d like to selfishly recommend an article I wrote for our 2006 salary survey. During our evaluation of our annual salary survey, we came to some illuminating conclusions about your job satisfaction. As you'll see in this article, the more satisfied you are on the job, the more likely you are to be involved in any number of IT communities. Hear directly from your peers about the importance of getting involved.”
—Jason Bovberg