Tutorial: How-to Setup Azure Site Recovery using Windows Server Essentials, Part 1: Pre-requisites

05. September 2017 Technical 0
Windows Server Essentials (or the Essentials Experience role) can be leveraged to quickly provision and enable a full Disaster Recovery site in the cloud using built-in Azure integration features. The solution is composed of two Azure products: Azure Virtual Network and Azure Site Recovery. I have previously written about our struggles to configure this solution ...

The next evolution of SBS

31. August 2017 Business, Opinion, Technical 2
In a previous article, I compared two alternative deployments for a new kind of “Small Business Server” (being defined in this case as a network of 25 users or less). Microsoft used to have a widely adopted product for this market called Small Business Server, but since it has been discontinued after SBS 2011, and that ...

What is the difference between an Archive, a Journal and Litigation Hold?

24. August 2017 Technical 1
As I’ve been helping organizations navigate the complexities of Exchange Online and compliance, this question has come up a few times. “What is the difference between an archive and a journal?” I also hear, “What is the difference between a journal and litigation hold?” And finally “What is the difference between litigation hold and an ...

5 Steps to Better Credit Card Handling on Your Network

17. August 2017 Technical 1
The requirements for PCI compliance are… high. Performing a risk assessment alone is a time-consuming process, to say nothing of an actual audit. Which is unfortunate for small and mid-sized businesses, since most of them don’t even need to store credit card numbers locally (and in fact it is much better if they don’t). Most of ...

A tale of two solutions: Azure VMs vs. On-prem Server

03. August 2017 Opinion, Technical 1
I’ve been studying two different solutions to the same small business problem for a while now, and I think it is high time I finally published an article on it. I run into a fair number of clients who are interested in moving 100% of their services “to the cloud.” In other words, they want ...

How to Encrypt your Hyper-V Guest VM’s using the GUI

27. July 2017 Technical 0
Encrypting guest virtual machines is another layer of protection you can add in Hyper-V. Why would an admin want to do this? Because while encrypting the Hyper-V Host itself can protect against stolen physical disks, enabling BitLocker inside your virtual machines protects against stolen virtual disks as well (e.g. if an attacker were to gain access to an ...

How to Encrypt your Hyper-V Host Server using the GUI

20. July 2017 Technical 0
Full disk encryption is becoming more important in the SMB.  I recommend this for every Windows 10 Pro PC, and also for your Windows Servers. Small businesses often have a single physical Hyper-V host server, maybe two. And these are usually located in a network closet or mechanical room, in a small office space.  These ...

How to fix guest processing errors on Hyper-V virtual machine backups

11. July 2017 Technical 0
So you setup a third party backup system, sticking mostly to defaults on the job settings, with “application aware” or “guest OS processing” enabled, in order to capture Hyper-V virtual machines, and keep their application data consistent (process database transaction logs, etc.) Or, perhaps you have migrated existing virtual machines to a newer piece of ...

More Azure Site Recovery bugs in Windows Server Essentials?

06. July 2017 Technical 0
Previously, I wrote about the Azure Site Recovery plugin for Windows Server Essentials Dashboard. One might say that it hasn’t been the best product so far, in that getting it to work without hiccups is apparently luck of the draw.  Microsoft Support hasn’t been able to reproduce the issues that we have been running into ...