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Migration and consolidation projects in the IT field face technical challenges individual to each infrastructure. Internal IT projects can be executed following well established organizational processes and requirements.

Projects related to M&A programs face additonal and very unique requirements and constraints. These contraints tend to be agile and require to work outside of the well established processes valid for internal projects. Especially the constraints provided by the M&A process itself might require immediate adjustments or major changes.

Our real-world experiences from global M&A IT consolidations can help you to lead your M&A program to success. Whether it is an internal infrastructure consolidation handling get-well activities in preparation for a takeover or merging of global IT landscapes in the context of a corporate takeover, our professional program team will assist you from establishing the technical design to project planning, execution and monitoring.

Some of our experiences have been summarized in a PowerPoint slidedeck. The scenario shows

  • Internal consolidation of a global IT infrastructure
    • Active Directory landscape which included more than 20 Active Directory domains and more than 7,000 accounts
    • Exchange landscape which included more five different Exchange organizations (partially hosted at an external provider) in preparation of an Office 365 Migration

  • Merging of two global IT infrastructures as part of a global M&A program
    • Migration of all user accounts to a new single Active Directory domain
    • Migration of more than 13,000 Exchange mailboxes to Office 365
    • Launch of a new single email Domain across seven Exchange organizations
    • Migration of regional file server data to central data centers
    • Rollout of a network infrastructure to each acquired regional Office, including new VPN Solutions
    • Rollout of new client hardware for all employees in the aquired enterprise
    • Rollout of a global data backup solution, including cloud storage
    • Consolidation of regional service desks into a single global service desk team

The following pictures demonstrate the situation pre merger:

 Picture Active Directory landscape 

Picture Exchange Server landscape

Picture Office 365 Migration 

 

We are keen to share our experiences to help you to bring your migration activites to a success. Ask for a workshop today: info@granikos.eu

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System Monitoring vs. Application Monitoring

When it comes to monitoring application administrators often disagree with system administrators on what to monitor and which thresholds to configure. By nature system administrators focus on system related counters and objects to monitor. They do not care about application related monitoring as those information's are out of scope of their daily work. Vice versa the same is true for application administrators.

Therefore there is no and will never be a single monitoring solution to combine totally different interests in information. On the other hand the business is highly interested in implementing a single monitoring solution to reduce the overall licensing cost (priority 1), reduce the number of servers required to host monitoring solutions (priority 2) and to eliminate the need for technical training (priority 3).

System monitoring and application monitoring systems sometimes share an intersecting set of “things” they are able to monitor. The fact is that both monitoring approaches have totally different procedures on how to monitor.

The following diagram illustrates the system monitoring approach, where a probe connects to a target and queries data using a dedicated protocol supported by the target (e.g. SNMP, WMI, SSH, etc.).

Schema PRTG System Monitoring

The solution illustrated uses PRTG which is a network monitoring solution that supports all standard protocols for monitoring. It can be enhanced by individual scripts, programs and libraries. You can find a link to PRTG at the end of this post.

In comparison to system monitoring the application monitoring approach looks very different, as the following figure shows:

Schematic Overview ENow Application Monitoring

Application monitoring relies on the existence of agents installed locally on the servers hosting the applications. This approach provides the ability to monitor from an application perspective. The agent itself performs checks depended on the application running on the same server. For example the agent checks that DNS name resolution works using the configured DNS servers on the server. If DNS resolution does not work the agent responds with an error to central management even when the DNS server itself is reachable by the system monitoring probe.

In the current IT landscape where messaging and collaboration solutions provide business functionality at a large scale and are setup in high-availability configurations the monitoring of such implementations from an application perspective is crucial. In a world where “always on” is the business goal for a mobile work force downtime of messaging and collaboration systems is an issue.

Application Monitoring Solution

 

The ENow Management Suite supports your monitoring efforts for:

  • Active Directory
  • Exchange Server
  • Exchange Online
  • Lync Server
  • Blackberry Enterprise Server
  • SharePoint Server
  • SQL Server

Mailscape is the part of the ENow Management Suite which helps you to monitor the messaging infrastructure components like Exchange Server, Blackberry Enterprise Server and SMTP relay servers.

Mailscape 365 is part of the ENow Management Suite which monitors your Exchange Online and Hybrid Exchange deployment inclusive of required hybrid components like AD FS and DirSync.

Compass is the part of the ENow Management Suite which monitors domain controllers and Active Directory specific topics.

ForeSite is the part of the ENow Management Suite which monitors your SharePoint farms and the related SQL database servers.

Besides monitoring the vitals of the application components and the infrastructure requirements (network, AD, etc.) the solution provides an extensive reporting functionality. The default set of reports fits most reporting requirements, but you can set up your own reports as well. A significant feature is the ability to provide the reports to different groups of stakeholders.

Monitoring servers should not be a time consuming task for an application administrator. Therefore the interface of the ENow Management Suite is quite handsome, as it displays all statuses in a dashboard. As long as all statuses are green the application administrator can focus on other work. When using all parts of the ENow Management Suite you act within one single dashboard, but each part utilizes it’s own security groups for access the dashboard.

How does a SharePoint administrator work with ForeSite?

The follow screenshot shows the ForeSite dashboard:

ForeSite One-View Dashboard

If the dashboard uses a traffic light approach to signal good, warning and error states. This makes it really easy to focus on section of the application infrastructure where some is not in a healthy state. It cannot be any more intuitive.

By just clicking on the signaling rectangle you dig deeper to the next level of information:

ForeSite One-View Dashboard - Timer Job Error

It seems as if there is something wrong with a SharePoint timer job. But what is going on?

ForeSite One-View Dashboard - Timer Job Error - Level 2

Ok, it is not the SharePoint timer service itself. It is just one of the timer jobs itself.

ForeSite One-View Dashboard - Timer Job Error - Level 3

The Application Addressed Refresh Job is offline since 3.4 days. That is a valuable information and the SharePoint administrator knows where to start to solve this issue.

This is a basic example how an application monitoring solution can help to identify the error.

The reporting functionality of ForeSite helps to gather a lot of different data from a SharePoint farm. Those reports can be executed manually or be sent automatically by email on a recurring basis. The reports overview displays a list of different reports which are available by default:

ForeSite - Professional SharePoint Reporting

With the proactive monitoring of critical SharePoint services, like Site Availability, Timer Jobs, Search and Index, and content databases ForeSite helps the application administrator to focus on daily work. The alerting functionality helps to reduce the response time in the case of an error and therefore helps to reduce the overall business impact to a minimum.

Conclusion

The classic system monitoring solution is the interface of the administrative personnel responsible for the IT infrastructure itself. The application monitoring solution is the main interface for application administrators and runs on top of the IT infrastructure. Even when some components (disk, memory, CPU, …) are measured by both components.

Besides monitoring of different important aspects of the application an application monitoring solution provides the ability for application specific reports. Those reports and even the dashboard itself can be made available to different groups of stakeholders in the company using Windows credentials.

An application monitoring and reporting solution is a valuable addition to classic system monitoring.

What are your thoughts on system and application monitoring? Leave a comment.

Get your free 21-day trial of the ENow Management Suite today: http://www.granikos.eu/en/Products/ENowManagementSuite 

Need more professional consulting on Exchange Server, Office 365 or Exchange configurations? Do not hesitate to contact us by email: info@granikos.eu

Links 

 

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On Oktober 15, 2014
1132 Views

SharePoint Server 2013Problem

Saving a Site Template with activated Publishing Feature is not possible in SharePoint 2013 (menu link missing).

When using the direct browser link (which worked perfect in SharePoint 2010) http://YourSharePointSite/_layouts/15/savetmpl.aspx you get the error The "Save site as template" action is not supported on this site.

Save site as template error

 

Solution 

Modify the SaveSiteAsTemplateEnabled property in your SPWeb object via PowerShell.

# Store your Site in a variable:
$SiteToModify = Get-SPWeb http://YourSharePointSite

# Display the current value of the property:
$SiteToModify.AllProperties["SaveSiteAsTemplateEnabled"]

# Set the property to true:
$SiteToModify.AllProperties["SaveSiteAsTemplateEnabled"] = "true"
$SiteToModify.Update()

 

Screenshot PowerShell

 

When now trying the savetmpl.aspx link again, you can save your template:
http://YourSharePointSite/_layouts/15/savetmpl.aspx

Save as Site Template working

 

 

 

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Last updated: 2019-05-07


The following PowerShell scripts have been published by our Exchange and Office 365 experts to the technical community at TechNet Gallery. Please use the GitHub repositories to report issues or to file feature requests.

Exchange Server 2013Exchange Server 2016Exchange Server 2019General

Office 365Office 365

Exchange Server 2013Exchange Server 2016Exchange Server 2013 / 2016 / 2019

Exchange Server 2007Exchange Server 2010Exchange Server 2007/2010

PowerShellOther Stuff

 

Please send comments, wishes, and ideas to support@granikos.eu.

Enjoy!

 


Need assistance with your Exchange Server Organization? You plan to upgrade your Exchange Server Organization? You plan to migrate to Office 365? Contact us: info@granikos.eu


Updates

Update 2019-05-07: Export mailbox delegates and SMTP forwarding information added
Update 2018-09-04: Add remote IP-address ranges to a receive connector added
Update 2018-06-16: Manage Master Category List for Shared Mailboxes and Teams added
Update 2018-04-29: Convert Word documents using PowerShell and Set Mailbox Item Private Flag added
Update 2018-01-24: Create a new Room Mailbox with Security Groups added
Update 2017-11-11: Export all user mailbox permissions added
Update 2017-09-22: Remove Out-Of-Office rules from user mailbox added
Update 2017-05-20: Parse email messages content for further processing and Update OWA vDir config across multiple servers added
Update 2017-03-18: Fetch recently created public folders and Clear Private Flag on Mailbox Messages added
Update 2017-02-22: Remove Orphaned HealthMailbox and SystemMailbox Accounts from MESO Container added
Update 2017-02-17: Test Office 365 Domain Availability added
Update 2017-02-13: Connect to Exchange Server 2013+ using remote PowerShell added
Update 2017-02-07: Create Exchange internal/external Url based certificate requests, Create a scheduled task for Exchange Server 2013 added
Update 2017-01-24: Gather Exchange Configuration Data added
Update 2017-01-05: Export Messages from Transport Queue added
Update 2016-11-29: Clean legacy public folder ACL added, Scripts categorized
Update 2016-11-28: Add multiple legacy public folder replicas added
Update 2016-08-18: Simple import of multiple PST files for a single user added
Update 2016-07-28: Change IIS Log File settings Github Url added, Create a new Team Mailbox with Security Groups added
Update 2016-06-04: GlobalFunctions added
Update 2015-06-18: Copy-ReceiveConnector updated
Update 2015-06-01: Exchange 2010 Public Folder Replication Report (UTF8 support)
Update 2015-05-21: Copy anti-virus pattern to Exchange 2010/Exchange 2013 servers added
Update 2014-12-10: Copy a receive connector from one Exchange Server to multiple Exchange Servers added

 

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When setting up Exchange Server or any other Enterprise application that provides IIS services (i.e. SharePoint), it might be a requirement to change the default folder path für IIS log files to a different location than the default location (C:\inetpb\logs). Even though that todays physical or virtual system drives are in the 100GB range, it might be a design requirement to have the folder path placed on a different volume.

Especially when you have to configure more than one server, you prefer to have configurations implemented by script.

The script Set-Webserver.ps1 provides in it's current release the configuration of:

  • IIS log folder path
  • IIS log period
  • Local time filename and rollover configuration

Addtional configurations, like logExtFileFlags, logFormat, truncateSize, can be implemented, if required.

The script runs on Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server 2012 R2.

Link

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