Update Rollup 5 for System Center 2012 R2

Summary: Update Rollup 5 for System Center 2012 R2 and Azure Pack now available

Yesterday Microsoft released a new Update Rollup for System Center 2012 R2 and Azure Pack called Update Rollup 5. Update Rollup 5 has a lot of fixes and new features especially for Windows Azure Pack and System Center Virtual Machine Manager and Data Protection Manager.

Components that are fixed in this update rollup

  • Data Protection Manager (KB3021791)
    • Protect SharePoint with SQL Always on Configuration
    • Protect SharePoint Server, Exchange Server, and Windows Client workloads to Microsoft Azure by using Data Protection Manager
    • Support for multiple retention ranges for long-term backup on Microsoft Azure
    • Ability to transfer initial backup copy offline to Azure
    • Support for protecting Microsoft workloads that are hosted in VMware
    • Display missed SLA alerts on the Data Protection Manager console
    • Enhanced reporting with Data Protection Manager central console
  • Operations Manager (KB3023138)
  • Service Manager (KB3009517)
  • Virtual Machine Manager (KB3023195)
    • Differencing disk as an option in the Windows Azure Pack VMRole deployment
    • New operating system support
    • New ExplicitRevokeRequired parameter to control IP address management when Grant-SCIPAddress is used
    • Support for SQL Server 2014
    • Azure Site Recovery
  • Windows Azure Pack (KB3023209)
    • Adds support for SQL Governor in the SQL Server Resource Provider.
    • Adds administrator support for disabling native Network RP to allow for third-party network provider
    • Provides detail on Virtual Machine Memory type, Memory Startup and Maximum values in the Tenant Portal.
    • Fix to the Get-MgmtSvcRelyingPartySettings PowerShell cmdlet.
    • Fix to the issue of failing to establish Remote Desktop Connection to virtual machines put behind a Network Address Translation (NAT) device.
    • Fix to the Attached Network dialog box where the network entries in the list were disabled.

As you can see you get several new feature with Update Rollup 5. In Data Protection Manager you finally get support for SharePoint, Exchange and Windows Client workload protection to Microsoft Azure, and support for workloads running on VMware infrastructure. Virtual Machines Manager not only brings new features such as support for the Virtual Machine Manager Database to run on SQL Server 2014 it also includes a lot of fixes and a security update (3035898
MS15-017: Vulnerability in Virtual Machine Manager could allow elevation of privilege: February 10, 2015). Some of the most interesting fixes for me are:

  • DHCP extension: Currently, users have to manually update the DHCP extension after update rollup installation on all hosts. This is now automated. After the DHCP extension is replaced in the Virtual Machine Manager server’s installation folder to the latest version, Virtual Machine Manager automatically checks the DHCP extension against all hosts. If the host has an older version of DHCP extensions, the agent version status will be displayed as “DHCP extension needs to be updated in host properties on the Status page.” The user calls the update agent and updates the DHCP extension on the Hyper-V host in the same way that the user did this for the Virtual Machine Manager agent. Also, if the VSwitch is a logical switch, the status will be shown in “logical switch compliance.” The user can remediate the logical switch. This will also update the DHCP extension on the host.
  • Bare-Metal Deployment: If a physical computer profile is created by using vNic (and by using a virtual machine network) and if there are more than one hostgroup for a logical network that also has that virtual machine network when you add a host resource on the “Provisioning Options” page, the host profile will be displayed for only one host group. The profile won’t be displayed for the rest of the host groups.

For Windows Azure Pack also includes some important fixes and improvements on of the is in the Tenant Portal, users can now see details on Virtual Machine Memory type, Memory Startup and Maximum values.

Update Rollup 5 for System Center 2012 R2 brings a lot of new features and important fixes to the table, however before deploying the fixes in your production environment, I recommend to test the Update Rollup and maybe wait for some reports about issues from other users.




Microsoft Windows 10 January Event

What’s next for Windows 10

Microsoft yesterday held the January event about the next generation of Windows and showed some great new features of Windows 10. If you have watched the Windows 10 webcast, you have seen that Microsoft announced and showed a lot of new stuff yesterday. In this post I do a quick summary about this Windows 10 event. Spoiler alert, since this was a consumer event, there were no news about Windows Server or System Center.

Windows as a Service

Well the first great news yesterday was that Windows 10 will be a free upgrade in the first year for Windows 8.1, Windows Phone 8.1 and Windows 7 users. After that Microsoft tries to keep the install base very up-to-date to make it easier for developers to develop and deploy new apps to customers.

New Windows 10 Experience

Windows 10 Expierence

Joe Belfiore demoed some great new features and the experience you get with new Windows 10. One of the great things you will see that there will be just one version of Windows 10, everything should be one platform. He also demoed the new Action Center and the new Start menu.

Continuum Mode

Windows10 Continuum

Continuum Mode was announced back in September. Continuum helps two-in-one devices to switch between different modes such as desktop mode with mouse and keyboard and tablet mode using touch input. So you always get the best experience when using the device.

Cortana

Windows 10 Phone Laptop Cortana

Another big news was the release of Cortana for Windows. Cortana is the personal digital assistant you already know from Windows Phone. Microsoft also showed some great improvements and how Cortana can make your life easier.

Windows 10 for phones

Windows 10 Phone

Microsoft also announced that Windows 10 will be coming to phones and small tablets.

New Browser

Windows 10 Spartan

Microsoft officially showed a new browser called Project Spartan, which will bring the latest web standard to the Microsoft web platform and some other cool features like digital inking and Cortana integration.

New universal applications

Windows 10 Universal Apps

Microsoft bring several universal apps to the Windows 10 platform like a great new Photo, Video or Music apps. This apps are running across several devices such as phones, tablets, desktops, TVs and the Xbox One.

Office universal apps

Windows 10 Universal Office

Not only Windows integrated apps are coming as universal apps, Microsoft is also releasing a touch-friendly version of Office as universal app which will run Outlook, Word, Excel and PowerPoint across different devices types.

Xbox app

Windows 10 Xbox App

Microsoft also demoed a new Xbox app on Windows 10. The Xbox App will allow you to get your Xbox experience to Windows 10. This will bring multiplayer across devices (PC and Xbox One), Game DVR, Game streaming (from Xbox One to PC) and DirectX 12.

Microsoft HoloLens

Microsoft HoloLens

One of the biggest things Microsoft announced yesterday was the Microsoft HoloLens which is the world’s first holographic computing platform. With Windows 10, holograms are Windows universal apps and Windows universal apps can work as holograms, making it possible to place three-dimensional holograms in the world around you to communicate, create and explore in a manner that is far more personal and human.

Surface Hub

Surface Hub

Microsoft yesterday not only announced a new device called HoloLens, they also announced a new device called Surface Hub, which is basically a 84-inch touch screen with multi-touch and multi pen input, including Skype for Business and some great whiteboard technology.

Feedback is really important

Windows Insider

Microsoft did talk a lot about the Windows Insider Program and the feedback they are getting from a lot of people around the world.

 

Some facts

  • The next Windows 10 Preview will be available next week
  • Project Spartan will not be included in the next preview release
  • The first Preview for Windows 10 for Phones will be available in February
  • HoloLens will be released in the Windows 10 timeframe

 



Microsoft Switzerland IT-Events

New Microsoft Switzerland TechNet Events for Windows Server & System Center vNext in 2015

Microsoft today released some dates for the upcoming free TechNet events for IT-Pros in Switzerland. The events are focused on different Microsoft Technologies such as Windows 10, Microsoft Azure, System Center, Cloud OS, Windows Server, Office and many more. Together with Philipp Witschi (itnetx) and Michael Rüefli (itnetx & Microsoft MVP) I will present about the new features in Windows Server, Hyper-V and System Center vNext.

Microsoft TechNet Event 2015

Am 1. Oktober 2014 wurde die erste Technical Preview der kommenden Versionen unseres Windows Server und System Center veröffentlicht. Im Rahmen unseres Technet Seminars am 11. März 2015 präsentieren wir einen ersten Überblick über alle Neuerungen im Betriebssystem sowie im Management.

In diesem Seminar werden Michael Rüefli (Cloud Architect, CDM MVP), Thomas Maurer (Cloud Architect, Hyper-V MVP) und Philipp Witschi (Head of Consulting & Operations) der itnetx gmbh

intensiv auf die Schwerpunkte Virtualisierung mit Hyper-V, Storage und Backup Restore eingehen und Ihnen das Neuste auf Basis von Microsoft Technologie vorstellen, viel Live-Demo inklusive!

 

Nutzen Sie diese Gelegenheit! Besuchen Sie uns in Wallisellen und informieren sich über die künftigen Möglichkeiten von Windows Server und System Center. Der Anlass ist wie immer kostenlos.

 

Agenda

09.00 – 09.15     Begrüssung (René Hanselmann, Microsoft Schweiz)

09.15 – 10.30     Windows Server Storage vNext (Michael Rüfli, itnetx GmbH)

10.30 – 10.45     Pause

10.45 – 12.00     Windows Server Hyper-V vNext (Thomas Maurer, itnetx GmbH)

12.00 – 13.00     Lunch

13.00 – 14.15     Hybrid Scenario & Backup-ASR-Storage Replication (Michael Rüfli, Thomas Mauer, Philipp Witschi, itnetx GmbH)

14.15 – 14.30     Kaffee Pause

14.30 – 15.45     Real World scenario mit Fokus auf Automation (Michael Rüfli, itnetx GmbH)

15.45 – 16.00     Q & A

ab 16.00             Ende

Feel free to register for this free events on the Microsoft Switzerland TechNet event page:

Windows Server & System Center vNext – Deep Dive (Option1) 12. Mai 2015

Am 1. Oktober 2014 wurde die erste Technical Preview der kommenden Versionen unseres Windows Server und System Center veröffentlicht. Im Rahmen unseres Technet Seminars am 11. März 2015 präsentieren wir einen ersten Überblick über alle Neuerungen im Betriebssystem sowie im Management. In diesem Technet werden Michael Rüfli (Cloud Architect, CDM MVP), Thomas Maurer (Cloud Architect, Hyper-V MVP) und Philipp Witschi (Head of Consulting & Operations) der itnetx gmbh intensiv auf die Schwerpunkte Virtualisierung mit Hyper-V, Storage und Backup/Restore eingehen und Ihnen das Neuste auf Basis von Microsoft Technologie vorstellen, viel Live-Demo inklusive! Nutzen Sie diese Gelegenheit! Besuchen Sie uns in Wallisellen und informieren sich über die künftigen Möglichkeiten von Windows Server und System Center. Der Anlass ist wie immer kostenlos.

Windows Server & System Center vNext – Deep Dive (Option2) 17. Juni 2015

Am 1. Oktober 2014 wurde die erste Technical Preview der kommenden Versionen unseres Windows Server und System Center veröffentlicht. Im Rahmen unseres Technet Seminars am 11. März 2015 präsentieren wir einen ersten Überblick über alle Neuerungen im Betriebssystem sowie im Management. In diesem Seminar werden Michael Rüfli (Cloud Architect, CDM MVP), Thomas Maurer (Cloud Architect, Hyper-V MVP) und Philipp Witschi (Head of Consulting & Operations) der itnetx gmbh intensiv auf die Schwerpunkte Virtualisierung mit Hyper-V, Storage und Backup/Restore eingehen und Ihnen das Neuste auf Basis von Microsoft Technologie vorstellen, viel Live-Demo inklusive! Nutzen Sie diese Gelegenheit! Besuchen Sie uns in Wallisellen und informieren sich über die künftigen Möglichkeiten von Windows Server und System Center. Der Anlass ist wie immer kostenlos.

 

To get an overview about Windows Server & System Center vNext you can also join the following session with Markus Erlacher (itnetx), Marcel Zehner (itnetx & Microsoft MVP) and Martin Wüthrich (itnetx).

Am 1. Oktober 2014 wurde die erste Technical Preview der kommenden Versionen von Windows Server und System Center veröffentlicht. Die Zeit könnte nun nicht günstiger sein, Ihnen die wichtigsten technischen Neuerungen im Rahmen unserer TechNet Seminare zu präsentieren – viele Live-Demos inklusive!

Markus Erlacher, Geschäftsführer bei der itnetx gmbh, ehemaliger Technical Solution Professional Datacenter bei Microsoft Schweiz und einer der versiertesten Datacenter-Experten wird zu Beginn unseres Technets einen Überblick zu den Szenarien und Funktionen der nächsten Version von Windows Server und System Center geben.

 

IT-Abteilungen stehen immer mehr unter Druck: Kosten müssen eingespart, Durchlaufzeiten verkürzt und Fehler minimiert werden. Um diese Ziele zu erreichen, ist Automatisierung von IT-Prozessen unumgänglich. Lösungen wie System Center Orchestrator, Systems Management Automation und Azure Automation werden in der Session 2 von Marcel Zehner, MVP Cloud & Datacenter Management bei der itnetx gmbh vorgestellt.

 

Der Nachmittag beginnt mit der Vorstellung unserer Enterprise Mobility Suite (EMS), ein interessant zusammengeschnürtes Paket wichtiger Funktionen, u.a. für “Bring your own device” Scenarien, die in aller Munde sind und die ein oder andere Herausforderung in der Umsetzung mit sich bringen: Wie kann diese Anforderung in Firmen umgesetzt werden? Welche Techniken bietet Microsoft hier? Themen wie Authentifizierung in der Cloud, ADFS, Zugriffsrechte (Rights Management) und Mobile Device Management (Intune) werden von Martin Wüthrich, Workplace Architekt und System Center Configuration Manager und Packaging Spezialist der itnetx gmbh, thematisiert – inklusive Scenarien, die mit Hilfe von Azure RemoteApp umgesetzt werden können.

 

Damit IT-Infrastrukturen und Applikationen einwandfrei betrieben werden können, ist eine umfangreiche End-to-End-Überwachung notwendig. In Zeiten vom hybriden IT-Infrastrukturen ist es notwendig, Ressourcen unabhängig von Ihrem Betriebsort überwachen zu können und in einer einheitlichen Sicht zu visualisieren. In der Session 4 zeigt Ihnen Marcel Zehner wie diese Ziele mit dem System Center Operations Manager erreicht werden können. Zudem stellt er die Azure Operational Insights vor, ein neuer cloud-basierter Service der die schnelle und umfangreiche Analyse von Messdaten erlaubt.

 

Nutzen Sie diese Gelegenheit! Besuchen Sie uns in Wallsiellen und informieren sich über die künftigen Möglichkeiten von Windows Server und System Center. Der Anlass ist wie immer kostenlos.

 

Agenda

09.00 – 09.15      Begrüssung (René Hanselmann, Microsoft Schweiz)

09.15 – 10.30     Übersicht Windows Server und System Center (Markus Erlacher, itnetx GmbH)

10.30 – 10.45     Pause

10.45 – 12.00     IT Prozess-Automatisierung (Marcel Zehner, itnetx GmbH)

12.00 – 13.00     Lunch

13.00 – 14.15     EMS & Mobile Device Management (Martin Wüthrich, itnetx GmbH)

14.15 – 14.30     Kaffee Pause

14.30 – 15.45     End-to-End Infrastruktur- und Serviceüberwachung (Marcel Zehner, itnetx GmbH)

15.45 – 16.00     Q & A

ab 16.00               Ende

Windows Server & System Center vNext - ein erster Überblick 11. März 2015

Am 1. Oktober 2014 wurde die erste Technical Preview der kommenden Versionen von Windows Server und System Center veröffentlicht. Die Zeit könnte nun nicht günstiger sein, Ihnen die wichtigsten technischen Neuerungen im Rahmen unserer TechNet Seminare zu präsentieren – viele Live-Demos inklusive! Markus Erlacher, Geschäftsführer bei der itnetx gmbh, ehemaliger Technical Solution Professional Datacenter bei Microsoft Schweiz und einer der versiertesten Datacenter-Experten wird zu Beginn unseres Technets einen Überblick zu den Szenarien und Funktionen der nächsten Version von Windows Server und System Center geben.

 



InstantGo powercfg

Troubleshoot Windows InstantGo (Connected Standby)

In Windows 8 Microsoft released a feature called InstantGo (formerly know as Connected Standby) which should bring smartphone like Power Management features to your Windows tablet or notebook. Devices such as the Surface Pro 3 do offer this feature. This post should help you troubleshoot issues with InstantGo or Connected Standby.

InstantGo requires the following:

  • Windows 8.1 Operating System (In Windows 8 this is called Connected Standby)
  • A firmware flag indicating support for the standard
  • The boot volume must run on a SSD disk
  • Support for NDIS 6.30 by all network devices
  • Passive cooling on standby
  • Secure Boot
  • Memory to be soldered to the motherboard
  • The Hyper-V Hypervisor role must be disabled on Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 systems. Windows 10 Hyper-V will allow you to use Hyper-V and InstantGo at the same time.

Check if the hardware supports InstantGo

To check if your hardware supports InstantGo you can run the following command:

InstantGo powercfg

InstantGo Issues / Connected Standby Issues

In some case you can run in some issues where you have your battery draining more than expected during the InstantGo or Connected Standby time. This could be of the following reasons:

  • Drivers – Make sure you have the latest drivers installed
  • Firmware – Make sure you have the latest Firmware (BIOS) installed
  • Mails –  The Windows communication app keeps the broker infrastructure (BI) system active. BI, in turn, keeps the WLAN network up so that the system stays up-to-date with emails. If you get a lot of emails this can end up in a higher power drain.
  • Software –  Some installed legacy Software which does not let you go into the InstantGo modus.
  • VPN Clients – Some older VPN Clients can also cause issues with InstantGo
  • Network Activity – The WLAN device might have a challenging radio environment and the Windows system might not be able to establish a reliable Internet connection. We see how these events affect the WLAN device, which, in turn, impacts the battery.
  • Hyper-V – If you run Hyper-V in Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 you can not run InstantGo, this is solved in Windows 10.

Troubleshooting InstantGo / Troubleshooting Connected Standby

To get some more information about your device and InstantGo or Connected Standby you can use the following tools and reports.

powercfg /SleepStudy

Powercfg SleepStudy

The maybe best way to Troubleshoot Connected Standby or InstantGo issues, is to use the powercfg /SleepStudy command. This will generate a Sleep Study report which allows you to analyze different things about Conncted Standby:

Connected Standby / InstantGo Overview

SleepStudy Report

Connected Standby Transitions

SleepStudy Report Connected Standby Transitions

Connected Standby Sessions

Here you can analyze which application or driver did use battery resources during the Connected Standby session.

SleepStudy Report InstantGo

powercfg /batteryreport

powercfg batteryreport

With powercfg /batteryreport you can generate a report about how your battery is used.

Battery Report

And you can also see what kind of state drained your battery, if this was an active session or a Connected Standby session.

Battery Report Battery Usage

powercfg /energy

PowerCFG Engery

With powercfg /engery you can see not only InstantGo or Connected Standby issues, you can see what other applications, drivers and more does could drain your battery.

Energy Report

I hope this helps you to troubleshoot Connected Standby issues.

Sources

 



Nokia Wireless Charging Plate DT-903

Quick review of the Nokia Wireless Charging Plate DT-903

Some days ago I got some new Microsoft or Nokia gadgets. One of the was the Nokia Wireless Charging Plate DT-903 which basically does wireless charge your phone and has some other cool extra when you pair it via Bluetooth using NFC.

So what does the Charging Plate do:

  • Of course it charges your phone – The DT-903 Wireless Charging Plate uses the Qi charging standard. It works with a wide range of devices and it can be powered by a USB port. Take the DT-903 with you, plug it into a USB port and enjoy quick and easy charging.
  • It reminds you when your phone is low on battery – Pair a Bluetooth Low Energy enabled Lumia with the DT-903 and a soft light will ‘breathe’ from beneath the charger when the battery is low. A subtle reminder to charge your phone makes wireless charging even more convenient.
  • Get notifications – Know what’s happening on your phone without looking at it. When you have paired your Lumia with the DT-903, the notification light on the charger glows for missed calls and messages

Nokia Wireless Charging Plate DT-903 Glowing

To connect the Charging Plate to your phone, just hold it on the NFC symbol on the plate and you will get ask if you want to pair it.

After that you can find the settings for the Wireless Charging Plate in the Device Hub Settings on your Windows Phone.

So you can setup which notifications from which app you want your plate to glow and you can also define a night mode, where the glowing is disabled.

Overall I really like the new charging plate, it is a pretty cool gadget and I am really happy about the notifications. Since my phones is always on silent I don’t get the notifications. Normally I just had to grab my phone to check if there are some new notifications, now I know if there is nothing glowing, I can relax ;-).



DPM Deduplication

Deduplication in System Center Data Protection Manager

Today Microsoft announced support for Deduplication in System Center Data Protection Manager (DPM). To use Deduplication together with System Center Data Protection Manager you have to meet the following criteria:

  • The Server running System Center Data Protection Manager must be virtualized.
  • DPM Server has to use Windows Sevrer 2012 R2
  • The Hyper-V Sever where the DPM VM is running on has to be Windows Server 2012 R2
  • System Center Data Protection Manager must be version 2012 R2 with Update Rollup 4 (UR4) or higher.
  • The Data Storage of the DPM Server must be VHDX Files attached to the DPM VM.
  • DPM VHDX files need to be 1TB of size.
  • The VHDX files of the DPM Server must be stored on a Scale-Out File Server Cluster using SMB 3.0
  • All the Windows File Server nodes on which DPM virtual hard disks reside and on which deduplication will be enabled must be running Windows Server 2012 R2 with Update Rollup November 2014.
  • Deduplication is enabled on the CSV of the Scale-Out File Server
  • It is recommended to use Storage Spaces but it is not required
  • Use Parity Storage Spaces with enclosure-awareness for resiliency and increased disk utilization.
  • Format NTFS with 64 KB allocation units and large file record segments to work better with dedup use of sparse files.
  • In the hardware configuration above the recommended volume size is 7.2TB volumes.
  • Plan and set up DPM and deduplication scheduling
  • Tune the File Server Cluster for DPM Storage

DPM Deduplication

The combination of deduplication and DPM provides substantial space savings. This allows higher retention rates, more frequent backups, and better TCO for the DPM deployment. The guidance and recommendations in this document should provide you with the tools and knowledge to configure deduplication for DPM storage and see the benefits for yourself in your own deployment.

To get more information checkout the following TechNet Article: Deduplicating DPM storage