Posts Tagged ‘Windows’

Confused about Citrix XenServer 5 support for Windows Server 2008

November 25th, 2008

I read a news item here stating Citrix XenServer 5 lacks support for Windows Server 2008 as a guest operating system. I decided to check it out for myself.

Citrix reveals here that indeed Windows Server 2008 guests are not supported in XenServer 5. However, the What’s new in Citrix XenServer 5 page explains that XenServer 5 is tuned for Windows and Windows Server 2008 guest support has been added through the all important Microsoft Server Virtualization Validation Program (SVVP).

Confused? I am.

VMware supports Windows Server 2008 for many of its products and VMware is very clear about it. VMware’s guest OS support for all VMware products can be found in the Guest Operating System Installation Guide.

What’s up with the broken Windows Search?!

November 15th, 2008

Can someone please explain to me why the search function in Windows hasn’t worked reliably since about Windows 2000 or Windows 98? It got exponentially worse with the release of Microsoft’s “Desktop Search”.

See below. I’m looking for the location of a file called wuauclt.exe. The “Desktop Search” feature, which when installed, replaces the default built in Windows Search, can’t find the file:

search1

I have to resort to the old faithful command prompt search to find what I’m looking for:

search2

This is beyond stupid.

VMware Server 2.0 installation error

November 15th, 2008

I ran into an installation error this afternoon with VMware Server 2.0 on Windows Server 2003 R2.  It was a dialog box that popped up and said “The System Administrator has set policies to prevent this installation“.  The error prevents the installation from proceeding and offers only one course of action which is to click “Ok” and the installation terminates.

The workaround is as follows:

  1. Click Start
  2. Click Run
  3. gpedit.msc <enter>
  4. Drill down to Computer configuration
    1. Windows Settings
      1. Security Settings
        1. Software Restriction Policies
  5. Right click Software Restriction Policies
  6. Choose Create New Policies
  7. On the right hand side, right click Enforcement
  8. Choose Properties
  9. Down below, choose All users except local administrators
  10. Click OK
  11. Close Group Policy
  12. Open a Command Prompt
  13. Run the command gpupdate /force <enter>
  14. When local group policy is finished updating, re-run the VMware Server 2.0 setup

Paranormal activity afoot on the interweb

November 8th, 2008

Unless AWStats is lying to me, ghosts of operating systems past have been invading the basement where I host this blog, as recent as the past few days.  Take a look at some of the operating systems still crawling around the internet these days.  Good Lord.  Geek Squad, if you’re done fooling around in court with Mark Russinovich and Microsoft, you still have a few upgrades left to perform for your lagging consumers:

ghostos

Let’s look at a some:

  • Windows XP – Well this is still a fairly current enough OS considering the Vista fiasco, and, that’s how I roll.
  • Windows CE – That’s pretty cool.  Trio?  Chip PC thin client?
  • Windows Server 2003 – I’m flattered my site is informative enough to be browsed on a server somewhere.  I could be a jerk and get some poorly written java applets served up but I gotta surf my own site too so I’ll keep it clean.
  • Windows 2000 – Your support ends soon my friend.  Hopefully you’re on Service Pack 4 at least.
  • Windows NT – A solid OS, but we’re starting to get a tad brave.
  • Windows Me – I didn’t know anyone was still running on this garbage two weeks after it was released.  What did you do to receive this punishment?
  • Windows 98 – Another pretty solid OS that I spent at least a few years on, but it’s time to upgrade.  Go to Best Buy and visit the Geek Squad.
  • Windows 95 – A major breakthrough in Windows technology and generally a fun time, but I wouldn’t want to repeat the experience.
  • Windows 3.xx – Seriously… you are my hero!  But why?  Using Trumpet Winsock?  Contact me with a digital photo of your Windows 3.xx setup and I’ve got P4 desktop hardware in my basement that has your name on it.  Offer valid while supplies last. No purchase necessary. Must be 18 years of age or older to participate. No software pre-installed. Your routable internet IP address must be supplied to prove you are the Windows 3.xx hits in my web logs.
  • ?Unknown? – I find it interesting that unknown operating systems handily beat out all versions of Linux combined.  It looks like Linux isn’t actually ready to take over the Windows desktop – again.

That’s it for now.  I’d better get rolling here.  Looking out the window I see Linux users with torches and pitchforks coming up my street.  I must get back to my 24 hour BCP exercise.  Problems need troubleshooting.  Heckfire, let’s categorize this as Virtualization.  I mentioned the lab.  Hopefully the readers will get a chuckle out of it.  Maybe someone will win the P4 desktop.

Microsoft Windows x64 (64-bit) and the VI

November 4th, 2008

32-bit computing is still very much alive, well, and very much supported today which may be one of the primary reasons you have not investigated 64-bit yet or invested the time it takes to migrate your software and/or servers to 64-bit architecture.  Part of the adaptation process is learning and understanding the underlying mechanics behind a technology to be sure it makes good sense from an economical, roadmap strategy, and business need standpoint.  I think 64-bit is one of those technologies that is so deep and covers so much territory that there is a chance for the spread of misinformation. 

As VMware Administrators, at one point or another our careers intersect with Microsoft Windows technologies.  For some like myself, the Windows experience is a daily tradition.  Everyone who is running VirtualCenter is using Microsoft Windows as both the server and client platform.  VMware Update Manager users are using Windows.  License Manager runs on Windows.  Even those without VirtualCenter are probably using the Virtual Infrastructure Client which runs on Windows.  My point is that although this is mainly a VMware virtualization centric blog, we can’t completely ignore Windows.  Understanding the benefits that 64-bit Windows technologies provides might help our virtual infrastructures run faster and more efficiently.  In the long term, I think it’s going to allow our VI to scale up.

Fortunately for those who have not yet rolled up their sleeves and gotten dirty with 64-bit, there’s an IT Architect by the name of Helge Klein who has written an absolutely fantastic seven part series entitled “Windows x64 – All the Same Yet Very Different” in terms that I think most of us can understand.  Even if you’re not a big fan of Windows, some of the content is universal and applies to many platforms.  If you maintain a 3-ring binder of good stuff you’ve found on the internet, I think this series would belong there.

Soup up your computer with a VMworld 2008 screensaver

November 1st, 2008

Get yourself a VMworld 2008 screensaver at http://www.vmworld.com/docs/DOC-1623.  Sorry Linux and MAC users, no compiled version for you until your desktop platform’s market share dethrones Microsoft Windows.  However, there is some hope if you’re a Linux or MAC user working at VMware in the Palo Alto offices.  The included .sfp file reveals the location of the Macromedia flash which you should be able to view on the corporate network:  S:\Marketing\Graphics\Web Site\vmworld2008_screensaver\vmw08_1280x1024\vmw08_ss1280x1024_v15.swf  Be sure to get Marketing’s approval first.

By the way VMware, is VMwrold2008 an easter egg, or just a v-typo?  🙂

vmscreensaver

Microsoft Windows Add or Remove Programs terminology clarified

October 26th, 2008

A look at “Add or Remove Programs” on a Microsoft Windows machine reveals a list of installed software and Microsoft Windows Updates.  To the right of each program are details on installation size, use frequency, and date last used.  I rarely use the information on the right hand side because I’ve found it to be unreliable.  Take a peek at the example below.  Adobe Acrobat, a program I use often for reading and creating .PDF files is listed as being used “frequently”, yet I apparently haven’t used Adobe Acrobat since 12/23/2005, which was around the time this machine was built.

arprog1

Well what exactly does the term “frequently” mean then?  Below are the defintions from Microsoft. 

arprog2

Things are so much clearer to me now.  Well, not really.  Arbitrary definitions from one Microsoft developer are just that, arbitrary and potentially meaningless to the next person.  The reality of it is this is a broken feature that I’ll venture guess has behaved this way since Windows 2000 (I recall the screens being similar or identical).  Added shame is this misinformation comes from a Windows Server.  One would think this type of information would be easily gathered and reliably reported on a server class operating system.