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HomeLab: DNS step 1: Setting up a BIND master DNS server on SLES

I’m building my redundant DNS server setup. DNS is short for Domain Name System.

Very basically explained DNS translates domain names into IP addresses and vice versa.

You can find more information about DNS on wikipedia article:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Domain_Name_System

I’ll be installing my DNS server on a SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) hosted on a vmware virtual environment. The DNS software I’ll be using is BIND (Berkeley Internet Name Domain).
I’m choosing to use BIND because there is a lot of information out there about BIND and it is the de facto standard DNS server software if you are running a Unix-like OS.

These are the features I want:

  • Run a DNS to resolve internal and external domain names into IP addresses and vice versa.
    (the internal domain name will be biolizards.local, the ip range will be 172.30.0.0/16)
  • Make my DNS server Redundant against server outage

I will split this guide in 2 posts:

DNS step 1: Setting up a BIND master DNS server on SLES

DNS step 2: Setting up a BIND slave DNS server on SLES

Continue reading

Windows Anti-Virus Exclusion List

If you ever need it here are the links where you can find what AntiVirus Exclusions you want to configure for your Windows Server.


Enterprise Configuration Recommendations:

Windows:

  • KB822158 Virus scanning recommendations for Enterprise computers that are running currently supported versions of Windows

Windows / Active Directory:

Cluster:

Forefront: Considerations when using antivirus software on FF Edge Products

FRS:

SQL:

IIS:

DHCP:

SCOM / MOM:

Config Manager 2007:

Hyper-V:

Exchange:

SharePoint:

SMS:

ISA:

Windows Update:

SBS:

MED-V

System Center:

Data Protection Manager:

App-V

Source: http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/953.aspx

VMware vSphere 5.0 Product Documentation

New Features and Release Notes

What’s New in VMware vSphere 5.0
VMware vSphere 5.0 Release Notes


Compatibility and Configuration Limits

Hardware, Host, and Guest Operating System Compatibility Guides
VMware Product Interoperability Matrix
Configuration Maximums for VMware vSphere 5.0

ESXi and vCenter Server Product Documentation

VMware vSphere Basics Guide html pdf epub mobi
vSphere Installation and Setup Guide html pdf epub mobi
vSphere Upgrade Guide html pdf epub mobi
vCenter Server and Host Management Guide html pdf epub mobi
vSphere Virtual Machine Administration Guide html pdf epub mobi
vSphere Host Profiles Guide html pdf epub mobi
vSphere Networking Guide html pdf epub mobi
vSphere Storage Guide html pdf epub mobi
vSphere Security Guide html pdf epub mobi
vSphere Resource Management Guide html pdf epub mobi
vSphere Availability Guide html pdf epub mobi
vSphere Monitoring and Performance Guide html pdf epub mobi
vSphere Troubleshooting html pdf epub mobi
VMware vSphere Examples and Scenarios Guide html pdf epub mobi

Command-Line Product Documentation

Getting Started with vSphere Command-Line Interfaces Guide html pdf
vSphere Command-Line Interface Concepts and Examples html pdf
vSphere PowerCLI User’s Guide html pdf
VMware vSphere Update Manager PowerCLI Installation and Administration Guide html pdf
vSphere Management Assistant Guide html pdf

VMware vSphere 5.0 Downloadable

VMware vSphere 5.0 is there. You can download the Software using the links below

VMware ESXi 5.0 (Build 469512)
VMware vCenter 5.0
(Build 456005)
VMware Data Recovery 2.0
(Build 433157)
vSphere Storage Appliance 1.0
VMware vShield Zones for vSphere 5 (Build 216288)

A key for the ESXi 5.0 Free version can be obtained here

All about how to upgrade your licenses can be found here

Homelab: Router Step 2: pfsense basic install


This is a follow up post for Installing pfsense router on ESXi

if you mist the first post you can read it here.

Step 2 : Configure a basic pfsense
The default ip for pfsense on the lan side is 192.168.1.1
I’m going to change this because I want it to be 172.30.1.1/16
I’m also going to enable DHCP on the lan side
After that I will do a initial config with the wizard Continue reading

Homelab: Router Step 1: Installing pfsense router on ESXi

As you might have read on my homelab page I’m starting to rebuild my test environment from scratch
(I like to call it my homelab).

To start off I’ll be installing pfsense as a temporary router.


pfSense is a free, open source customized distribution of FreeBSD tailored for use as a firewall and router. In addition to being a powerful, flexible firewalling and routing platform, it includes a long list of related features and a package system allowing further expandability without adding bloat and potential security vulnerabilities to the base distribution. More information can be found on the pfsense website

Since I’m building my homelab on a ESXi server I’ll need to create a virtual server with following specifications:

Before we start installing we must download the installation iso.
Since version 2.0-rc3 is available I will install that one.
You can download it here: http://blog.pfsense.org/?p=589.
I downloaded this version pfSense-2.0-RC3-amd64-20110621-2308.iso Continue reading

vSphere Client performs slowly on a Windows 7 system

You can run into the following problems when running VMware vSphere client 4.x on a Windows 7:

  • Redraws are visibly noticeable, especially when maximizing the VMware vSphere Client 4.x
  • The performance of the vSphere Client is slow

Well the problem is the desktop composition, short aero from Windows 7

Desktop composition is also known as Aero. It can either be disabled globally or on a program by program basis. Having it disabled while running such things as 3D games may provide a performance bump.

You can resolve the problem by disabling the aero, if you like the aero you can just disable it when running the VMware client. This can be done by following the next steps:

  1. Right-click the shortcut for the VMware vSphere Client and click Properties.
  2. Click the Compatibility tab.
  3. Select the “Disable desktop composition” option
  4. Click Ok

When you open the VMware vSphere client now you will see that the aero will be disabled and the vSphere client will preform normally.

Desktop composition is also known as Aero. It can either be disabled globally or on a program by program basis. Having it disabled while running such things as 3D games may provide a performance bump.

Slow mouse movement in a Microsoft Windows 2008 R2 VM on ESX/ESXi 4.x

When you install a Microsoft Windows 2008 R2 on a vmware esx/esxi 4.x host you will notice that the mouse movement is slower then on a Microsoft Windows 2003 R2 hosted on a vmware esx/esxi 4.x hypervisor.

You can solve this problem by going threw the following steps: Continue reading

Windows 7 All Versions DVD

When you buy a Microsoft Windows 7 in the store, the only version you can install is the version you bought. Well there is a trick to show all the versions this way you can install any version you want from basic to ultimate.

To accomplish this you just have to delete the ei.cfg file in the folder /sources/ on the windows DVD
And burn the DVD again. If you have the iso on your computer you can use the eicfg_delete_utility from http://code.kliu.org/misc/winisoutils/ download here. Continue reading

Windows 7 USB Installation

Yesterday on a nice evening I wanted to upgrade my HP Mini to Microsoft Windows 7.
The HP Mini doesn’t have a CD/DVD-ROM drive on board as many mini notebooks.
I had two options connect a external dvd-drive or create a bootable USB Stick.

There is not much fun in just connecting a external dvd-rom drive so I went for the option of creating a bootable Microsoft Windows 7 install stick.

Surfing the web searching on how to create an installable Windows 7 USB stick, I noted there where some different options in creating one. I tested them out and will explain them.

The 2 different versions I tested:

  1. Difficult: manual way of creating a bootable Windows 7 install USB stick
  2. Easy: Automatic way via a tool to create a bootable Windows 7 install USB stick

What you will be needing:

  • An empty USB stick minimum 4GB
  • An Microsoft Windows 7 install DVD ISO file
  • A computer to prepare the USB drive
  • A computer or virtual machine to test the USB boot stick.

Continue reading

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