Tag: Storage

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Nutanix Coding Challenge Total Recode

Judge at the Nutanix Coding Challenge

Nutanix just announced the PowerShell Coding Challenge for your Nutanix environment. The challenge will be to build a script which solves a real world problem in these use cases: Provisioning/orchestration, reporting, data protection, disaster recovery and runbook automation.

Do you have what it takes to write the best script for a Nutanix environment? Find out by participating in the inaugural Total Recode challenge. This global contest gives you a platform for showcasing your best talent. May the most creative, badass coding guru win!

Want to get more familiar with the Nutanix product and test your script? Check out the Nutanix Prism APIs and our recently announced Community Edition software.

Nutanix Coding Challenge Prizes

You can win great prices:

  • Best Overall
    DJ1 Inspire 1 Drone (Valued up
    to $4000) or $4000 cash prize
  • Most Impactful
    Home Lab ($2,500 value)
    or $2,500 cash prize
  • Most Creative
    $2000 cash prize

And I am proud the be a judge in this contest with other great minds:

 

Nutanix Coding Challenge Judges

If you want to know more or join the challenge, check out the Nutantix Coding Challenge: Total Recode website.



E2EVC Copenhagen

Speaking at E2EVC 2015 Berlin

Last year I was speaking at the Experts 2 Experts Virtualization Conference (E2EVC) at E2EVC Barcelona and E2EVC Brussels. And I am proud to announce that I will speak at E2EVC 2015 in Berlin next week from 12-14 June. Together with Michael Ruefli (Microsoft MVP for Cloud and Datacenter Management) I will speak about the latest announcement from the Microsoft Cloud and Datacenter evolution, covering topics like Azure Stack, Nano Server, Windows Server 2016, System Center 2016, Hyper-V and Microsoft Azure.

E2EVC Virtualization Conference is a non-commercial, virtualization community event. The main goal of the E2EVC is to bring the best virtualization experts together to exchange knowledge and to establish new connections. E2EVC is a weekend crammed with presentations, Master Classes and discussions delivered by both virtualization vendors product teams and independent experts. I am happy to be part of the community and listen to other industry leading experts, hopefully see you in Berlin.

 

 



Cisco UCS Hardware

Cisco UCS supports RoCE for Microsoft SMB Direct

As you may know we use SMB as the storage protocol for several Hyper-V deployments using Scale-Out File Server and Storage Spaces which adds a lot value to your Hyper-V deployments. To boost performance Microsoft is using RDMA or SMB Direct to accelerate Storage network performance.

RDMA over Converged Ethernet (RoCE) allows direct memory access over an Ethernet network. RoCE is a link layer protocol, and hence, it allows communication between any two hosts in the same Ethernet broadcast domain. RoCE delivers superior performance compared to traditional network socket implementations because of lower latency, lower CPU utilization and higher utilization of network bandwidth. Windows Server 2012 and later versions use RDMA for accelerating and improving the performance of SMB file sharing traffic and Live Migration. If you need to know more about RDMA or SMB Direct checkout my blog post: Hyper-V over SMB: SMB Direct

With Cisco UCS Manager Release 2.2(4), Cisco finally supports RoCE for SMB Direct. It sends additional configuration information to the adapter while creating or modifying an Ethernet adapter policy.

Guidelines and Limitations for SMB Direct with RoCE

  • SMB Direct with RoCE is supported only on Windows Server 2012 R2.
  • SMB Direct with RoCE is supported only with Cisco UCS VIC 1340 and 1380 adapters.
  • Cisco UCS Manager does not support more than 4 RoCE-enabled vNICs per adapter.
  • Cisco UCS Manager does not support RoCE with NVGRE, VXLAN, NetFlow, VMQ, or usNIC.
  • You can not use Windows Server NIC Teaming together with RMDA enabled adapters in Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server 2012 R2 or you will lose RDMA feature on these adapters.
  • Maximum number of queue pairs per adapter is 8192.
  • Maximum number of memory regions per adapter is 524288.
  • If you do not disable RoCE before downgrading Cisco UCS Manager from Release 2.2(4), downgrade will fail.

Checkout my post about Hyper-V over SMB:



Microsoft Exam 70-533 Implementing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions

Passed Microsoft Exam 70-533 Implementing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions

A couple of weeks ago I passed Microsoft Exam 70-533 Implementing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions, which is focused on implementing and designing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure solutions such as Azure Websites or Azure Virtual Machines (IaaS). I think taking this exam and preparing for it was a great idea. Even if I have already done a couple of projects on Azure I still learned a lot during the preparation and you can find some of the best practices. Since Azure is a huge beast and the rapid deployment of new features, you will definitely find some new stuff you didn’t know before during the preparation for the exam. And of course taking new Microsoft Certifications early helps you to stand out in the IT Pro or Developer world. Of course passing exams alone does not make you an expert, but if you have know-how on a topic it’s is always got to have some kind of paper to prove it.

So what are the skills measured for this exam. The exam 70-533 focuses on 6 topics, Azure Websites, Virtual Machines, Cloud Services, Storage, Azure Active Directory and Virtual Networks. To my surprise I got a really good score on Azure Websites and of course Virtual Machines, since I used to run several of them on Azure. I also found out that Azure Active Directory is one of the parts I have to invest a little more.

Skills measured

Implement websites (15-20%)

  • Deploy websites
    • Define deployment slots; roll back deployments, configure and deploy packages, deploy web jobs, schedule web jobs
  • Configure websites
    • Configure app settings, connection strings, handlers, and virtual directories; configure certificates, custom domains, and traffic manager; configure SSL bindings and runtime configurations; manage websites by using Windows PowerShell and Xplat-CLI
  • Configure diagnostics, monitoring, and analytics
    • Retrieve diagnostics data; view streaming logs; configure endpoint monitoring, alerts, and diagnostics; monitor website resources
  • Configure scale and resilience
    • Configure auto-scale using built-in and custom schedules; configure by metric; change the size of an instance
  • Manage hosting plans
    • Create hosting plans; migrate websites between hosting plans; create a website within a hosting plan

Implement virtual machines (15-20%)

  • Deploy workloads on Azure virtual machines (VMs)
    • Identify supported Microsoft workloads; deploy and connect to a Linux VM; create VMs
  • Implement images and disks
    • Create specialized and generalized images for Windows and Linux; copy images between storage accounts and subscriptions; upload VHDs
  • Perform configuration management
    • Automate configuration management by using PowerShell Desired State Configuration and custom script extensions; enable puppet and chef extensions
  • Configure VM networking
    • Settings include reserved IP addresses, access control list (ACL), internal name resolution, DNS at the cloud service level, load balancing endpoints, HTTP and TCP health probes, public IPs, firewall rules, direct server return, and Keep Alive
  • Configure VM resiliency
    • Scale up and scale down VM sizes; auto-scale; configure availability sets
  • Design and implement VM storage
    • Configure disk caching; plan storage capacity; configure operating system disk redundancy; configure shared storage using Azure File service; configure geo-replication; encrypt disks
  • Monitor VMs
    • Configure endpoint monitoring, alerts, and diagnostics

Implement cloud services (15-20%)

  • Configure cloud services and roles
    • Configure instance count and size, operating system version and family, upgrade and fault domains, ACLs, reserved IPs, and network access rules; configure local storage; configure dedicated and co-located caching, local and cloud configurations, and local disks; configure multiple websites; configure custom domains
  • Deploy and manage cloud services
    • Upgrade a deployment; VIP swap a deployment; package a deployment; modify configuration files; perform in-place updates; perform runtime configuration changes using the portal; scale a cloud service; create service bus namespaces and choose a tier; apply scalability targets
  • Monitor cloud services
    • Monitor service bus queues, topics, relays, and notification hubs; configure diagnostics

Implement storage (15-20%)

  • Implement blobs and Azure files
    • Read data; change data; set metadata on a container; use encryption (SSL); perform an async blob copy; configure a Content Delivery Network (CDN); implement storage for backup and disaster recovery; configure Azure Backup; define blob hierarchies; configure custom domains; configure the Import and Export Service
  • Manage access
    • Create and manage shared access signatures; use stored access policies; regenerate keys
  • Configure diagnostics, monitoring, and analytics
    • Configure retention policies and logging levels; analyze logs
  • Implement SQL databases
    • Choose the appropriate database tier and performance level; configure point in time recovery and geo-replication; import and export data and schema; design a scaling strategy
  • Implement recovery services
    • Create a backup vault; deploy a backup agent; back up and restore data

Implement an Azure Active Directory (15-20%)

  • Integrate an Azure AD with existing directories
    • Implement DirSync, O365 integration, and single sign-on with on-premises Windows Server 2012 R2; add custom domains; monitor Azure AD
  • Configure the Application Access Panel
    • Configure single sign-on with SaaS applications using federation and password based; add users and groups to applications; revoke access to SaaS applications; configure access; federation with Facebook and Google ID
  • Integrate an app with Azure AD
    • Web apps (WS-federation); desktop apps (OAuth); graph API

Implement virtual networks (15-20%)

  • Configure a virtual network
    • Deploy a VM into a virtual network; deploy a cloud service into a virtual network; configure static IPs; configure internal load balancing; design subnets
  • Modify a network configuration
    • Modify a subnet; import and export a network configuration
  • Design and implement a multi-site or hybrid network
    • Choose the appropriate solution between ExpressRoute, site-to-site, and point-to-site; choose the appropriate gateway; identify supported devices and software VPN solutions; identify networking prerequisites; configure regional virtual networks and multi-site virtual networks

Preparation

To prepare for the exam I used several different resources such as Microsoft Virtual Academy, TechNet, Channel9 and of course Microsoft Azure it self. I also found some great community blogs which have some link summaries:

If you are going to take this exam I wish you good luck.



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.

 



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

 



OneDrive 1TB

How to get over 1TB of OneDrive storage

Well today Microsoft finally changed the storage you get on OneDrive. Since I get a lot of questions from people on Twitter, here is how you get over 1TB of storage available on your OneDrive account. Some weeks ago Microsoft announced some changes to OneDrive and Office 365. So you now get more free default storage from 7GB up to 15GB which is great but does not make 1TB. To get 1TB of extra storage is very simple, just buy Office 365 Home, Personal or University and you will get 1TB of extra storage on your OneDrive account. (The Office 365 website is not yet updated and show 20GB right now).

ConsumerSubscription_Table

Even if you have to buy this it is pretty cheap, you not only get 1TB of OneDrive storage you also get the latest Office programs and apps to install on your devices and you also get 60 minutes world on Skype.

I think this is a pretty cool deal, and you can finally store basically everything on your OneDrive.