Archive for January, 2005
One of the most frustrating aspects for the inexperienced SBS system administrator is trying to find all the log files on the system when troubleshooting. Becuase SBS is an amalgamation of different products all on the same box, and since each of the products installed was developed by a completely different set of programmers, log files are spread all over the system. There is no common location for all the logs. This post will help you identify the locations of the most commonly-needed log files for SBS troubleshooting.
If I were to ask you where your biggest computer security threat was for your organization, what would your answer be? Viruses? Spyware? Internet attacks? Spam? Weak passwords?
All of these items are valid security threats to your organization, but you may be surprised to know that even though you have protected yourself at your server and your connection to the internet, you are still vulnerable to each of these threats. Your biggest risk comes not from external attacks, but from within – at the internal desktop or laptop PC.
I recently learned this little trick, and it’s been very helpful for me when troubleshooting or implementing configuration changes. You can enter multiple DOS commands on the same line by separating them with the ‘&&’ identifier. For example:
net stop smtpsvc && net start smtpsvc
Entering that command at a command prompt will stop the SMTP service and then restart it again. The second command doesn’t start until the first has fully completed.
This has been indispensable when I’ve been troubleshooting ISA over a Terminal Services connection. Occasionally you have to restart the ISA services to implement a configuration change. If you stop the ISA services manually while connected over TS, your connection will get dropped and you cannot reconnect. However, restarting the services using this command line trick will momentarily interrupt your connection, but it will get restored as soon as the services start again.
I’ve run into a number of instances where settings for a network card were interfering with other settings, even though the network card had been removed from the system. I ran across this solution that has saved my hide a number of times. I know this works for Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, and Windows 2000 Professional and Server. It may work on other OSes, but I haven’t been able to verify just yet.
I’ve had several electronic discussions with people of late about GPO use and editing. One of the mailing lists I’m on had a discussion about where to get information or books on GPOs. I’ll include those links at the end of this post for reference. In another forum, I’ve been following the discussion of someone who is currently denied access to edit GPOs, likely because he made changes to the Default Domain Policy but is not sure what he changed or how to change it back.
With the release of Microsoft Office 2004, people who want to use Entourage to connect to an Exchange server are going to be pleased with the enhancements made to Entourage and the ease with which it can interact with Exchange 2003. This entry specifically covers connecting Entourage 2004 to an SBS 2003 server, but the steps can be extrapolated to any Exchange 2003 server that publishes Outlook Web Access.
The release of SBS 2003 gave us a much-needed feature – SSL Security Certificates at no additional cost. Well, no monetary cost, anyway. These certificates are self-signed. So while the certificate will enable SSL communications on the SBS server (for Outlook Web Access, Remote Web Workplace, and other services) it is not specifically a trusted certificate. In the Windows world, this is not much of a problem. When you connect to a site using a self-signed certificate, you are presented with a warning indicating that the certificate is not valid, specifically pointing out that it is signed by a non-trusted authority. To get past this, you click Yes and go on.
Not surprisingly, this is a little different in the Macintosh world.