How to Manage ESX Hosts with VMM 2012 R2

Although Microsoft offers a step-by-step guide for setting up System Center Virtual Machine Manager with VMware vCenter, I found it to be missing details. Therefore, I have created an illustrated guide for integrating vCenter and ESX hosts into VMM.

Installing VMM 2012 R2 with an Empty Remote Database

Vendors have only recently realized that database administrators only relunctantly grant permissions in addition to a mere database ownership. In a previous post I ranted about the installer for Citrix EdgeSight. This time I will be more peaceful when telling about the pecularities of the installer for System Center 2012 R2 Virtual Machine Manager. There is a blog post by Microsoft about using an empty remote database for VMM 2012 but some things have changed in R2.

Second Edition of our Book about Hyper-V and System Center

When the first edition of our German book was published, it was solely focussed on Windows Server 2012 but at the same time Windows Server 2012 R2 was getting close to its RTM date. Therefore we decided to update the book with new content. In the second edition, we added over 100 pages of in-depth information about Windows Server 2012 R2.

Again I have worked with Nils Kaczenski, Marc Grote and Jan Kappen. And again I had an awesome time coordinating with those three IT pros.

Using Shadowing to Make Demos during Presentations more Comfortable

I love giving demos during my presentation. But I also love presenter view in PowerPoint because I can stay in touch with my audience as well as my presentation. Apart from that, what’s on my desktop is only my business ;-) As soon as I switch to my demo, I am in a difficult situation. When my demo is visible for the audience, I need to turn around to be able to see it. Altough I do not like duplicating my primary display for the reasons mentioned above. But now, let me show you how to use the shadowing feature in Remote Desktop Services. After shadowing had disappeared in Windows Server 2012, it is now back Windows Server 2012 R2.

Useful Features in Remote Desktop Services for Cloud-Based Labs

I have recently blogged about the cloud-based lab which I have been using for more than a year now. It is a single, dedicated server running all my virtual machines. With the update to Windows Server 2012 R2, I decided to utilize more features of Remote Desktop Services. Because my virtual machines are located on virtual networks on the hypervisor, I cannot access them directly from the outside. Therefore, I have always used the server as the first hop before working on the VMs. Although I am using remote management whereever possible, I still need to RDP into VMs regularly. I have now implemented the following features to make my life easier.

Network Teaming Issues with Windows Server 2012 R2 in VMware Workstation

I have been using VMware Workstation for my lab for several years now. Using Client Hyper-V just does not cut it for me because I have been working with different hypervisors lately and need nested virtualization. But I have not been able to get network teaming to work in Windows Server 2012 R2. Now, I have finally traced this to the type of network adapters in VMware Workstation 10.

My Lab in the Cloud

Most of us IT professionals are in dire need of a lab environment to evaluate new products as well as product versions. As I travel a lot, I like to travel light. Therefore, I do not want a powerful laptop because of it’s size and weight. I do not want to buy the appropriate hardware because of the cost. And I do not want to use company-owned hardware because I want to be independent of perational decisions regarding such an environment. Now, let me tell you about my root server.

MVP 2013 for RDS

I am really proud to announce that I have been awarded Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) for Remote Desktop Services (RDS) in 2013. It has been for the fourth time in a row :-)

Citrix CloudPlatform from a Partner's Point of View

When Citrix expanded their cloud-based offerings with CloudPlatform to embrace Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), they introduced new opportunities as well as new challenges for partners in the existing ecosystem. Although partners can tell a much more consistent story, they will have to invest to develop their consultants’ skill to offer Linux-based products.

Enterprise Customers require Enterprise-class Monitoring (Hear me, Citrix?)

In the past there have been many rumours about EdgeSight being discontinued. It’s less than two weeks to the release of XenDesktop 7 and now that Citrix is offering more and more insight, it’s time to take a closer look at the monitoring facilities in XenDesktop 7.