Active Directory Integrated DNS Zones

In my last posting I mentioned that it’s not necessarily a good idea to always separate AD DS (Active Directory Domain Services) and DNS on different systems. Let’s now take a closer look at why that might be the case. If you run...

Active Directory and DNS on the Same System

I’ve found the AD/DNS relationship to be one of the least understood aspects of Active Directory, and the literature is full of misinformation and half-truths. I was surprised to realize that in this blog, we’ve never taken a closer...

DFS: Not a Distributed Database

You may have read something about DFS replication in Server 2008. (DFS stands for Distributed File System or Distributed File Service.) Or perhaps you've been using this feature, which (among other capabilities) lets you create...

AppLocker in Server 2008 R2

Among many other new goodies, Windows Server 2008 R2 brings us “AppLocker,” which is a re-branding of the Software Restriction Policies feature that’s been around for a few years now. This technology lets you restrict specific...

The Quality of Airport Information Systems

I don’t know about you, but I know at least a hundred people who I would put in the category of Very Smart IT People, and well over a dozen who would qualify for Scary Smart IT People. The number of such folks in the USA, by...

More on Computer System Responsiveness

Last time in this space, I mentioned an IBM research article that indicated that IT workers can be dramatically more productive when using computer systems with very fast response times. In a study of programmers, IBM found that...

Windows and Computer Responsiveness

Every now and then I get a bit nostalgic for the days when my workaday computer had a nearly instantaneous response time. That would be when that computer was a 6 MHz IBM PC/AT. How could it have an instantaneous response time...

FCI and the Content Classifier

One of the ways you can create a rule to classify a file’s properties using the FCI (File Classification Infrastructure) in Server 2008 is to examine its contents, using the “Content Classifier.” You can perform a string search or...

Nuances of the File Classification Infrastructure

One of the interesting things that can happen with file classifications in Server 2008 R2 is that you may encounter some “rule overlap.” For example, if two rules apply to the same file, and one sets a given property to the third...

FCI Rules in Server 2008 R2

Last time I wrote that you can create new file classification properties in Server 2008 R2, such as (for example) to indicate degree of confidentiality, customer, project, and so on. The next step after defining the classification...

File Classification Infrastructure and Server 2008 R2

Remember WinFS – Windows Future Storage? Once upon a time, this was a planned radical enhancement to the Windows file system that was going to be part of Vista. It turned out to be far too ambitious, far too Microsoft-centric, and...

Automatic SPN Management and Server 2008 R2

As we continue to chat about some of the benefits of Server 2008 R2, I thought we could take a couple of minutes to mention Automatic SPN Management. This feature takes effect when you raise the Domain Functional Level (DFL) to...

Server 2008 R2's Best Practices Analyzer

One of the areas of managing Windows servers that has always been a little problematical is that of discovering so-called “best practices.” One can debate the extent to which it is the operating system vendor’s responsibility to...

Three creative ways to evaluate Windows Server 2008 R2

Microsoft has provided several ways for us to evaluate Server 2008 R2. There are three “free” methods in addition to the traditional ways of getting eval copies through TechNet Plus and MSDN. (Get there at...

Wireshark and Promiscuous Mode

“Promiscuous mode” (you’ve gotta love that nomenclature) is a network interface mode in which the NIC reports every packet that it sees. If you’re using the Wireshark packet sniffer and have it set to “promiscuous mode” in the...

Measuring Byte Traffic on Windows Networks

One of the most useful things you can do with a packet sniffer like Wireshark is gain an understanding of who and what is responsible for the lion’s share of communications traffic on your network. You might be interested to see...

AD Logons and Network Traffic

Last week we looked at a number of introductory issues on using the Wireshark tool. Now I’d like to turn our attention to some Windows-specific issues. One of the areas that always seems to interest users and administrators alike is...

Wireshark Errors - Or Are They?

One of the features of Wireshark that you may have noticed, if you’ve been reading my posts this week and doing some experimenting on your own, is that the program color-codes packets in the packet list pane. For example, if...

Viewing Network Conversations in Wireshark

Last post we discussed filtering packets in Wireshark to restrict the displayed packets according to specified criteria, such as “tcp.port == 3389” to view Remote Desktop Protocol traffic, “tcp.port == 80” to view Web traffic, and...

Filtering the Wireshark Packet List

Unless you specify a filter when you create the capture file in Wireshark, you’ll see all the captured packets in the packet list pane. If you chose to perform a “promiscuous mode” capture then you could see packets from multiple...

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