Windows Tips & Tricks UPDATE, January 31, 2005

Windows Tips & Tricks UPDATE, January 31, 2005, —brought to you by the Windows IT Pro Network and the Windows 2000 FAQ site
http://www.windows2000faq.com

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FAQs

  • Q. Does the Microsoft Systems Management Server (SMS) OS Deployment Feature Pack support multicasting?
  • Q. Does Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) have an updated Sysprep tool?
  • Q. What's the Microsoft Solution Accelerator for Business Desktop Deployment (BDD)?
  • Q. Does Microsoft offer any tools to help diagnose Windows Server 2003 performance problems?
  • Q. How can I use the Windows Server 2003 Performance Advisor?

Commentary
by John Savill, FAQ Editor, [email protected]

In this issue, I talk about Microsoft Systems Management Server (SMS) OS Deployment Feature Pack and multicasting, Windows XP Service Pack 2's (SP2's) Sysprep tool, the Microsoft Solution Accelerator for Business Desktop Deployment (BDD), and the Windows Server 2003 Performance Advisor tool.


Sponsor: Security Administrator

Try a Sample Issue of Security Administrator! Security Administrator is the monthly newsletter from Windows IT Pro that shows you how to protect your network from external intruders and control access for internal users. As an added bonus, paid subscribers get access to over 1900 searchable articles on the Web. Sign up now to get a 1-month trial issue--you'll feel more secure just knowing you did. Click here!
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FAQs

Q. Does the Microsoft Systems Management Server (SMS) OS Deployment Feature Pack support multicasting?

A. No. Unlike Automated Deployment Services (ADS), which supports multicasting and therefore can deploy 100 machines--or one machine--using the same amount of bandwidth, the SMS OS Deployment Feature Pack supports unicasting only. Therefore, if you deploy 100 machines, the image file will be sent over the network 100 times.

Q. Does Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) have an updated Sysprep tool?

A. XP SP2 introduces an updated version of Sysprep. The updated Sysprep tool is in the deploy.cab file in XP SP2's \support\tools folder, or you can download the tool at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=3e90dc91-ac56-4665-949b-beda3080e0f6. When you open the downloaded deploy.cab file (e.g., by using WinZip), you'll see the updated sysprep.exe and setupcl.exe files, which are required for Sysprep operation.

Q. What's the Microsoft Solution Accelerator for Business Desktop Deployment (BDD)?

A. Microsoft has been experimenting with zero-touch deployment technologies, and early in 2004 I attended a 3-day training session about the company's upcoming zero-touch technology. The technology is a set of scripts that uses existing solutions such as Sysprep, Microsoft Systems Management Server (SMS), Microsoft SQL Server, User State Migration Tool (USMT), and a third-party disk-imaging tool to enable OS deployment and refresh operations without requiring any user input. Microsoft has now released this technology, with some modifications, as BDD. The technology now uses the SMS OS Deployment Feature Pack instead of the third-party imaging tool. It also includes the zero-touch provisioning component to deploy software to clients in a self-service manner (Microsoft BizTalk Server 2004 is required for zero-touch provisioning). You can download BDD at http://www.microsoft.com/technet/desktopdeployment/bddoverview.mspx. The technology takes the SMS OS Deployment Feature Pack to the next level of hands-off deployment. The download includes an entire Help center, which documents the configuration steps. Some features that were included in the early zero-touch installation technology are now part of the SMS OS Deployment Feature Pack (e.g., the USMT integration).

Q. Does Microsoft offer any tools to help diagnose Windows Server 2003 performance problems?

A. Microsoft has released the Windows Server 2003 Server Performance Advisor--a tool designed to help troubleshoot Windows 2003 performance problems. Neither Windows XP nor Windows 2000 platforms support this tool. The tool is available at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=61a41d78-e4aa-47b9-901b-cf85da075a73&displaylang=en. After you download the tool, execute the .msi file and follow the onscreen prompts to perform the following steps: 1. Click Next to go to the "Welcome to the Server Performance Advisor Setup Wizard" introduction screen. 2. Click "I accept" on the license page, then click Next. 3. Accept the default installation location and select whether the tool will be used by just the person installing the tool or by all administrators, as the figure at http://www.windowsitpro.com/articles/images/servperfwiz1.gif shows. Click Next. 4. The wizard prompts you for a location for the temporary storage of performance log files. Accept the default--C:\perflogs\data location--and click Next. 5. Next, the wizard prompts you for a reports folder location. Again, accept the default location (C:\perfLogs) and click Next. Click Next to begin the installation. When the installation is finished, click Finish. You'll now have a new Start menu item, Server Performance Advisor, which you can use to start the advisor process.

Q. How can I use the Windows Server 2003 Performance Advisor?

A. After you install the Windows 2003 Performance Advisor, as explained in the FAQ "Does Microsoft offer any tools to help diagnose Windows Server 2003 performance problems?" start the program via its new Start menu Server Performance Advisor shortcut (spa.exe in the C:\program files\server performance advisor folder). You can also use the command-line tool, spacmd.exe, which lets you initiate many of the same actions as the GUI does. The Performance Advisor introduction screen, which the figure at http://www.windowsitpro.com/articles/images/spa1.gif shows, has several options: a tour, the ability to add or repair collector groups, and a link to the Help file. The Quick Tour option walks you through the steps for starting the data-collection process, logging the data, and creating a report that's based on the collected data. While the tool gathers the data, you'll see several CD-ROM icons in the task tray, as the figure at http://www.windowsitpro.com/articles/images/spa2.gif shows. When data collection is finished, you'll see a report icon in the task tray. You click the report icon to view the output of the process. This report highlights potential problem areas that the tool identified. Data-collector groups collect and report about data specific to certain areas of functionality. For example, by default you have data-collector groups called System Overview (a general health report of the overall system state), Active Directory, IIS, and File, which return reports specific to these areas. You can create additional data-collector groups by selecting Add/Repair Data Collector Groups from the File menu (or by using the link on the main welcome screen). These operations make available additional options such as Active Directory Application Mode (ADAM) and Print Spooler. Select Yes in the Add/Repair column to add the new group to your console, as the figure at http://www.windowsitpro.com/articles/images/spa3.gif shows. To run a report for a specific area, select its collector group in the left pane (the scope tree). If you don't see the scope tree, click the filing cabinet icon in the task tray (button "a" in the figure at http://www.windowsitpro.com/articles/images/spa4.gif). After you select a collector, for example Active Directory (AD) at "b" in the figure, click the Start button (the green arrow at "c" on the tool bar). The status bar will display the process and duration of the collection. After the collection process is finished, you can select the report icon from the task tray or select the Current item from the Reports leaf of the collector ("d" in the figure). When you select the Reports leaf, you'll see that the reports are grouped into computer, year, month, and date order. When you view the report, note the icons at the top of the report. They let you delete the report, view the Performance Monitor output that the tool captured, and other options. Notice in the figure at http://www.windowsitpro.com/articles/images/spa4.gif, you can also see the types of collection being performed (e.g., active_directory_perf, active_directory_reg). If you select any of these options, the details pane shows the details of what will be collected. Notice that the tool doesn't use performance counters only; it also uses registry keys and numerous traces. Performance Advisor has many other advanced features. For example, you can use the schedule capability to set a schedule to run a report every 30 minutes. These reports are set on a per-data-collector level. The tool's Help documentation is good. You should run this tool during a typical processing time to obtain a baseline report for the system so that when you experience a problem, you'll have benchmarks to compare with. You should find Performance Advisor a valuable addition to your toolkit.

Events and Resources
(A complete Web and live events directory brought to you by Windows IT Pro: http://www.windowsitpro.com/events )

  • Free eBook! Keeping Your Business Safe from Attack: Passwords and Permission

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  • Encryption and Certificate Services eBook

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  • Fax Servers: Integrate. Automate. Communicate

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    http://www.windowsitpro.com/seminars/faxservers/index.cfm?code=0202emailannc

  • Is Your Messaging Infrastructure Ready for Tomorrow’s Risks?

  • Join industry security expert Randy Franklin Smith as he reveals the hottest security trends in the industry. Find out how SPIM, spyware, phishing, and malware evolve and become the latest threats for industrial espionage. You'll learn which kinds of attacks companies are reporting in increased numbers and the commonly held misconceptions about Microsoft security patches. You’ll also discover how secure content management solutions (SCMs) can help your company defend against business and network integrity threats. Register now and ensure enterprisewide protection!
    http://www.windowsitpro.com/seminars/securemessaging/index.cfm?code=0202emailannc

    Announcements
    (from Windows IT Pro and its partners)

  • Try a Sample Issue of Exchange & Outlook Administrator!

  • If you haven't seen Exchange & Outlook Administrator, you're missing out on key information to help you migrate, optimize, administer, backup, recover, and secure Exchange and Outlook. Plus, paid subscribers receive exclusive online library access to every article we've ever published. Order now!
    http://www.exchangeadmin.com/rd.cfm?code=fsep2352up

  • Nominate Yourself or a Friend for the MCP Hall of Fame

  • Are you a top-notch MCP who deserves to be a part of the first-ever MCP Hall of Fame? Get the fame you deserve by nominating yourself or a peer to become a part of this influential community of certified professionals. You could win a VIP trip to Microsoft and other valuable prizes. Enter now--it's easy:
    http://www.windowsitpro.com/mcphalloffame/index.cfm?code=winupdates0131

    Sponsored Link

  • Argent versus MOM 2005

  • Experts Pick the Best Windows Monitoring Solution
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    Contact Us
    Here's how to reach us with your comments and questions:

    This weekly email newsletter is brought to you by Windows IT Pro, the leading publication for Windows professionals who want to learn more and perform better. Subscribe today.
    http://www.windowsitpro.com/sub.cfm?code=wswi201x1z

    Windows Tips &amp Tricks UPDATE, January 31, 2005, —brought to you by the Windows IT Pro Network and the Windows 2000 FAQ site
    http://www.windows2000faq.com

    Make sure your copy of Windows Tips & Tricks UPDATE isn't mistakenly blocked by antispam software! Be sure to add [email protected] to your list of allowed senders and contacts.

    This email newsletter comes to you free and is supported by the following advertisers, which offer products and services in which you might be interested. Please take a moment to visit these advertisers' Web sites and show your support for Windows Tips & Tricks UPDATE.

    Save Up to 90% with Internet Fax Services
    http://www.dataoncall.com/land/itpro.jsp

    Security Administrator
    http://www.secadministrator.com/rd.cfm?code=fseu2552sp


    Sponsor: Save Up to 90% with Internet Fax Services

    Studies show that businesses spend millions of dollars each year on faxing documents, and 90% of those costs are attributed to labor and lost productivity. Outsourced Internet fax services eliminate costs while increasing efficiency and performance. Data On Call offers a comprehensive suite of secure, reliable and scalable Internet fax services designed for easy and immediate implementation. Start saving today with fax solutions for any situation: fax via email, Web UIs and APIs. Follow this link to learn how Data On Call's outsourced Internet fax services can save your business time and money.
    http://www.dataoncall.com/land/itpro.jsp


    FAQs

    • Q. Does the Microsoft Systems Management Server (SMS) OS Deployment Feature Pack support multicasting?
    • Q. Does Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) have an updated Sysprep tool?
    • Q. What's the Microsoft Solution Accelerator for Business Desktop Deployment (BDD)?
    • Q. Does Microsoft offer any tools to help diagnose Windows Server 2003 performance problems?
    • Q. How can I use the Windows Server 2003 Performance Advisor?

    Commentary
    by John Savill, FAQ Editor, [email protected]

    In this issue, I talk about Microsoft Systems Management Server (SMS) OS Deployment Feature Pack and multicasting, Windows XP Service Pack 2's (SP2's) Sysprep tool, the Microsoft Solution Accelerator for Business Desktop Deployment (BDD), and the Windows Server 2003 Performance Advisor tool.


    Sponsor: Security Administrator

    Try a Sample Issue of Security Administrator! Security Administrator is the monthly newsletter from Windows IT Pro that shows you how to protect your network from external intruders and control access for internal users. As an added bonus, paid subscribers get access to over 1900 searchable articles on the Web. Sign up now to get a 1-month trial issue--you'll feel more secure just knowing you did. Click here!
    http://www.secadministrator.com/rd.cfm?code=fseu2552sp


    FAQs

    Q. Does the Microsoft Systems Management Server (SMS) OS Deployment Feature Pack support multicasting?

    A. No. Unlike Automated Deployment Services (ADS), which supports multicasting and therefore can deploy 100 machines--or one machine--using the same amount of bandwidth, the SMS OS Deployment Feature Pack supports unicasting only. Therefore, if you deploy 100 machines, the image file will be sent over the network 100 times.

    Q. Does Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) have an updated Sysprep tool?

    A. XP SP2 introduces an updated version of Sysprep. The updated Sysprep tool is in the deploy.cab file in XP SP2's \support\tools folder, or you can download the tool at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=3e90dc91-ac56-4665-949b-beda3080e0f6. When you open the downloaded deploy.cab file (e.g., by using WinZip), you'll see the updated sysprep.exe and setupcl.exe files, which are required for Sysprep operation.

    Q. What's the Microsoft Solution Accelerator for Business Desktop Deployment (BDD)?

    A. Microsoft has been experimenting with zero-touch deployment technologies, and early in 2004 I attended a 3-day training session about the company's upcoming zero-touch technology. The technology is a set of scripts that uses existing solutions such as Sysprep, Microsoft Systems Management Server (SMS), Microsoft SQL Server, User State Migration Tool (USMT), and a third-party disk-imaging tool to enable OS deployment and refresh operations without requiring any user input. Microsoft has now released this technology, with some modifications, as BDD. The technology now uses the SMS OS Deployment Feature Pack instead of the third-party imaging tool. It also includes the zero-touch provisioning component to deploy software to clients in a self-service manner (Microsoft BizTalk Server 2004 is required for zero-touch provisioning). You can download BDD at http://www.microsoft.com/technet/desktopdeployment/bddoverview.mspx. The technology takes the SMS OS Deployment Feature Pack to the next level of hands-off deployment. The download includes an entire Help center, which documents the configuration steps. Some features that were included in the early zero-touch installation technology are now part of the SMS OS Deployment Feature Pack (e.g., the USMT integration).

    Q. Does Microsoft offer any tools to help diagnose Windows Server 2003 performance problems?

    A. Microsoft has released the Windows Server 2003 Server Performance Advisor--a tool designed to help troubleshoot Windows 2003 performance problems. Neither Windows XP nor Windows 2000 platforms support this tool. The tool is available at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=61a41d78-e4aa-47b9-901b-cf85da075a73&displaylang=en. After you download the tool, execute the .msi file and follow the onscreen prompts to perform the following steps: 1. Click Next to go to the "Welcome to the Server Performance Advisor Setup Wizard" introduction screen. 2. Click "I accept" on the license page, then click Next. 3. Accept the default installation location and select whether the tool will be used by just the person installing the tool or by all administrators, as the figure at http://www.windowsitpro.com/articles/images/servperfwiz1.gif shows. Click Next. 4. The wizard prompts you for a location for the temporary storage of performance log files. Accept the default--C:\perflogs\data location--and click Next. 5. Next, the wizard prompts you for a reports folder location. Again, accept the default location (C:\perfLogs) and click Next. Click Next to begin the installation. When the installation is finished, click Finish. You'll now have a new Start menu item, Server Performance Advisor, which you can use to start the advisor process.

    Q. How can I use the Windows Server 2003 Performance Advisor?

    A. After you install the Windows 2003 Performance Advisor, as explained in the FAQ "Does Microsoft offer any tools to help diagnose Windows Server 2003 performance problems?" start the program via its new Start menu Server Performance Advisor shortcut (spa.exe in the C:\program files\server performance advisor folder). You can also use the command-line tool, spacmd.exe, which lets you initiate many of the same actions as the GUI does. The Performance Advisor introduction screen, which the figure at http://www.windowsitpro.com/articles/images/spa1.gif shows, has several options: a tour, the ability to add or repair collector groups, and a link to the Help file. The Quick Tour option walks you through the steps for starting the data-collection process, logging the data, and creating a report that's based on the collected data. While the tool gathers the data, you'll see several CD-ROM icons in the task tray, as the figure at http://www.windowsitpro.com/articles/images/spa2.gif shows. When data collection is finished, you'll see a report icon in the task tray. You click the report icon to view the output of the process. This report highlights potential problem areas that the tool identified. Data-collector groups collect and report about data specific to certain areas of functionality. For example, by default you have data-collector groups called System Overview (a general health report of the overall system state), Active Directory, IIS, and File, which return reports specific to these areas. You can create additional data-collector groups by selecting Add/Repair Data Collector Groups from the File menu (or by using the link on the main welcome screen). These operations make available additional options such as Active Directory Application Mode (ADAM) and Print Spooler. Select Yes in the Add/Repair column to add the new group to your console, as the figure at http://www.windowsitpro.com/articles/images/spa3.gif shows. To run a report for a specific area, select its collector group in the left pane (the scope tree). If you don't see the scope tree, click the filing cabinet icon in the task tray (button "a" in the figure at http://www.windowsitpro.com/articles/images/spa4.gif). After you select a collector, for example Active Directory (AD) at "b" in the figure, click the Start button (the green arrow at "c" on the tool bar). The status bar will display the process and duration of the collection. After the collection process is finished, you can select the report icon from the task tray or select the Current item from the Reports leaf of the collector ("d" in the figure). When you select the Reports leaf, you'll see that the reports are grouped into computer, year, month, and date order. When you view the report, note the icons at the top of the report. They let you delete the report, view the Performance Monitor output that the tool captured, and other options. Notice in the figure at http://www.windowsitpro.com/articles/images/spa4.gif, you can also see the types of collection being performed (e.g., active_directory_perf, active_directory_reg). If you select any of these options, the details pane shows the details of what will be collected. Notice that the tool doesn't use performance counters only; it also uses registry keys and numerous traces. Performance Advisor has many other advanced features. For example, you can use the schedule capability to set a schedule to run a report every 30 minutes. These reports are set on a per-data-collector level. The tool's Help documentation is good. You should run this tool during a typical processing time to obtain a baseline report for the system so that when you experience a problem, you'll have benchmarks to compare with. You should find Performance Advisor a valuable addition to your toolkit.

    Events and Resources
    (A complete Web and live events directory brought to you by Windows IT Pro: http://www.windowsitpro.com/events )

  • Free eBook! Keeping Your Business Safe from Attack: Passwords and Permission

  • Master password and permissions basics with our newest free eBook and discover how to prevent most vulnerabilities and exploits with Microsoft's new tools. Firewalls, antivirus software, Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS), and Intrusion Prevention Systems (IPS) can all fail--but a strong permissions and authentication defense is priceless. Get the latest chapter now!
    http://www.windowsitlibrary.com/ebooks/securitypermissions/Index.cfm?code=0202emailannc

  • Encryption and Certificate Services eBook

  • In this new eBook, get the information you need to best deploy Windows Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) services in your IT environment. This free book explains the key components, concepts, and standards behind PKI and provides insight into how to put a Windows-rooted PKI into operation and how to keep it operational. Get the eBook now!
    http://www.windowsitlibrary.com/ebooks/publickeyinfrastructure/index.cfm?code=0202emailannc

  • Fax Servers: Integrate. Automate. Communicate

  • Join industry expert David Chernicoff in this free Web seminar to learn the best way to integrate and automate fax from messaging systems such as Microsoft Exchange Server and Outlook; improve document handling and delivery; and more. You’ll receive a complimentary 30-day software evaluation, whitepaper, and Starbuck’s gift card just for attending! Register now.
    http://www.windowsitpro.com/seminars/faxservers/index.cfm?code=0202emailannc

  • Is Your Messaging Infrastructure Ready for Tomorrow’s Risks?

  • Join industry security expert Randy Franklin Smith as he reveals the hottest security trends in the industry. Find out how SPIM, spyware, phishing, and malware evolve and become the latest threats for industrial espionage. You'll learn which kinds of attacks companies are reporting in increased numbers and the commonly held misconceptions about Microsoft security patches. You’ll also discover how secure content management solutions (SCMs) can help your company defend against business and network integrity threats. Register now and ensure enterprisewide protection!
    http://www.windowsitpro.com/seminars/securemessaging/index.cfm?code=0202emailannc

    Announcements
    (from Windows IT Pro and its partners)

  • Try a Sample Issue of Exchange & Outlook Administrator!

  • If you haven't seen Exchange & Outlook Administrator, you're missing out on key information to help you migrate, optimize, administer, backup, recover, and secure Exchange and Outlook. Plus, paid subscribers receive exclusive online library access to every article we've ever published. Order now!
    http://www.exchangeadmin.com/rd.cfm?code=fsep2352up

  • Nominate Yourself or a Friend for the MCP Hall of Fame

  • Are you a top-notch MCP who deserves to be a part of the first-ever MCP Hall of Fame? Get the fame you deserve by nominating yourself or a peer to become a part of this influential community of certified professionals. You could win a VIP trip to Microsoft and other valuable prizes. Enter now--it's easy:
    http://www.windowsitpro.com/mcphalloffame/index.cfm?code=winupdates0131

    Sponsored Link

  • Argent versus MOM 2005

  • Experts Pick the Best Windows Monitoring Solution
    http://ad.doubleclick.net/clk;13273616;8214395;i?http://www.argent.com/w/whitepapers_mom.html?Source=WNT%20Sponsored%20Link

    Contact Us
    Here's how to reach us with your comments and questions:

    This weekly email newsletter is brought to you by Windows IT Pro, the leading publication for Windows professionals who want to learn more and perform better. Subscribe today.
    http://www.windowsitpro.com/sub.cfm?code=wswi201x1z

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