The Surly Admin

Father, husband, IT Pro, cancer survivor

Self inflicted pain

Nothing much worse in IT then server outage.  What is worse, is when you do it to yourself.  This is the sorry tale of August 5th, 2010 and how I inflicted a horrible day upon myself.  Unrelenting stress, fear of job, the whole nine yards.

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August 12, 2010 Posted by | Technical | , , | Leave a comment

VMware Loosing the SMB

I’ve been a VMware Virtualization Certified Professional for about 2 years now and I’ve been a fanboy even longer–a client actually introduced me to it out of the blue a few years back and opened my eyes to a new vista!  We never got along all that great–though we were hardly at each other’s throats–but I always thank him for showing me Virtualization.

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April 7, 2010 Posted by | Technical | 3 Comments


For those of you who don’t know, Spiceworks is a program that helps IT departments manage the IT infrastructure.  It’s help desk, inventory and monitoring software all rolled up into one package and one of it’s primary attractions is the fact that it’s free.  Yep, you heard me, free.  Spiceworks, the company, gets revenue a couple of different ways, one is through Spiceworks the program embedded ad’s and the other is through direct support from vendors, who are in turn given direct access to the Spiceworks community–trust me, this isn’t nearly as scary as it might sound.

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January 16, 2010 Posted by | Technical | 5 Comments

Volume Licensing Dis-Service Center

The following is a post from a fellow IT person over at Spiceworks, Limey.  If you don’t know about Spiceworks, click the link over to the right and check it out.  If you’re an IT person for an SMB it may very well be the most valuable tool you’ve ever used!  Read on to see the recent problems Limey had with Microsofts new licensing portal.

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December 10, 2009 Posted by | Technical | | 5 Comments

DFS Adventures

DFS, or dynamic file system, is a cool feature introduced in Windows 2000 that allows you to have a “virtual” file system.  Essentially, instead of using traditional methods of attaching to a server to get files you attach to a virtual name (the domain name) and then Windows will direct you to the proper server (all done in the background).  The nice thing about this is you can setup multiple servers so you’ll go to the nearest server to you that has a copy of those files.  Replication of the data is even included (could use some much better tools for monitoring that, but that’s another story).  As an administrator, this feature is fantastic because I can change servers in the background without users ever really seeing what I’m doing.

But sometimes, the tools can be a little frustrating.

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September 24, 2009 Posted by | Technical | | Leave a comment

Sysprep and LSASS

Oh, epic fail!

So Dell has a service for $60 a PC to load your image onto the PC at the factory.  Then you just unpack and plop on the desk.  Easy peesy.  Right?

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August 11, 2009 Posted by | Technical | Leave a comment

Comments on Hyper-V

So I’m a regular over at and the debate often starts on the relative merits of the different virtualization hosts.

Inevitably Microsoft’s Hyper-V comes up and is compared to the others and voted just as good. I’m a big fan of VMware’s ESXi product and I’ve never seen nor read anything that would make me too interested to check out Microsoft’s Hyper-V.

But, the arguments continue (healthy ones, though). And then, one of the proponents for Hyper-V posts this: Killing/Ending a Hyper-V Virtual Machine that is Stuck.

The author, ChristopherO, is a great guy and wicked smart but sometimes people make arguments for me without me even trying!

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July 12, 2009 Posted by | Technical | 2 Comments