Simple bind events don’t record the calling Computer as the source, but record the ADDS-DC or the ADLDS instance name, so you cannot determine where the simple bind request came from.  So if you are trying to track down where the calling machine is that is locking out a user, you cannot determine this from the event log.  However, you can tell what instance the event is taking place on if you are trying to determine which AD server is being used.   Here are some ideas that might help you track down what machine the simple bind is coming from, even if you cannot log it normally.

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WhatTookSoLongIt appears the Networking team is looking for feedback on how to improve future releases of the Microsoft DHCP server role in Windows Server.  For me, the first thing that comes to mind is:

Add WMI support

This has always been one of the "Duh" points in the whole management of network services for me.  You really can’t get access to DHCP server information such as scope definitions, or lease information programmatically.

Sure, netsh is a great tool for doing some management tasks, or dumping configuration data to text files, but that requires parsing out of data, in an attempt to make it useful.

I would like to see WMI infrastructure established to access DHCP server information, so that I can write a tool in .NET or using Powershell to do specific administration or reporting tasks.

Some ideas that could be done if DHCP server was exposed via WMI:

  • Report on Scope definitions per server – It would be great to write a program or script to enumerate all your DHCP servers, and collect information around about your environment.  This could be used to compare to subnets defined in Sites and Services within Active Directory, to avoid having gaps in Active Directory Domain Services (ADDS) availability
  • Subnet Provisioning – It would be simple to write an application or Workflow for adding new subnets to DNS and DHCP, so that lease times in DHCP are in alignment with DNS refresh times in high traffic areas.
  • Easier Migrations – Netsh works ok for backing up a DHCP server to be migrated to another server, or when upgrading a server, but allowing WMI could ease this as well

 

So why have we not seen WMI support for DHCP in the past?  Was there a technical reason why it couldn’t be done, or was it just not something people were asking for?

Also maybe a nice .NET framework class around WMI for Network Services management similar to System.DirectoryServices.AccountManagement for managing Active Directory accounts?   System.NetworkServices.DHCP or System.NetworkServices.DNS?

Here is a .NET DNS Client Library for those interested.

There is the COM+ DHCPOBJS.DLL from the Windows 2000 resource kit, which you can use with .NET to manage DHCP, but I think a specific .NET class would be a much better solution.  Here is a link on how to use DHCPOBJS with C# if you want to give it a try.

 

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I love the Microsoft Zune Pass, since to me it’s the most economical way to discover and enjoy music.  Currently with a single Zune pass for $15 a month, you can connect 3 computers, and 3 Zune devices, with unlimited downloads of music.  It allows you to have separate music libraries on multiple profiles on a single PC, or multiple PCs.

This is a much improved model over the Apple iTunes “Buy” model which seems to lock you in to pay more, and get less ability to consume media how you may want too.  However, with the addition of the Zune Social community some issues are apparent with sharing a Zune Pass that I think MS should rectify to promote the Zune pass.

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Directory Services Debugging

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While trying to troubleshoot some application issues using SSL to connect to an ADLS/ADAM instance over LDAPS, I was curious if extended logging was available.  A quick post to the ActiveDir.org mailing list provided this nugget of Active Directory goodness for future reference.

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XNA 3.0 CTP and Zune on x64

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This morning I was excited to see a tweet that the XNA games studio 3.0 CTP is out.  With the tweet, came the reminder to make sure you read the accompanying README information.

So after folloing the link to the download site, I find this in the readme:

1.1.1. Zune Development Is Not Supported on 64-Bit Operating Systems

The XNA Game Studio 3.0 (Preview) does not support development of games for Zune if XNA Game Studio 3.0 (Preview) is installed on a 64-bit operating system such as Windows XP Pro x64 Edition or the x64 versions of Windows Vista®.

Doh!  All of my home machines are running on Windows x64 editions!  So no Zune game development for me until they release a version that is x64 compatible (or if I "borrow" my wife’s machine which is on 32bit). According to the XNA Team Blog, 64bit will be supported in RTM.  I wonder if this also means that I can’t load games from others onto my Zune as well, even if I can’t compile them.

In all fairness,  it is a Community Technology Preview (CTP), but it would be nice to have all the features available on both x32 and x64 based OS’s, especially in this day and age where 64bit has gained a lot of traction.

Also to note, that this CTP does not support targeting the Xbox 360 as well, but it will in the final release.

Here is a video of what development for the Zune would be like with the CTP though.

Update:

Indeed, I cannot load games from Vista x64 onto my Zune.  The XNA device manager throws an exception due to missing assemblies, which I sort of expected anyway.  Oh well.  I did take the time to write my first XNA game on Windows though, so all is not lost.  So XNA 3.0 installs and compiles Windows games just fine, but the XNA device manager used to load games onto Zune/Xbox is borked for x64.

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Transcode media for Zune

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One of the features that made the original Zune stand out from the iPod product line, was the ability to transcode your media in your collection to a lower bit rate when syncing to your portable Zune device. 

This made it simple to have Lossless copies in your media collection kept on your PC, which are often encoded at a higher bitrate yielding larger file sizes.   With the Zune80, which supports Lossless, the large files would be copied to your Zune, with no options to control how the media was encoded.

When you chose these files you wish to sync to your portable device, the software would transcode them to a lower bitrate as they are copied to your device.

With version 2.5 of the Zune software, the transcoding feature has returned:

image

These settings appear to be on a per device scope, so you could choose how your media is transcoded depending on the device.  For example you may wish to transcode to a lower bitrate for your Zune4 while working out, compared to when you are syncing to your Zune80.

This allows you to have a media hub at home of higher quality media, which you can transcode, or downgrade to your personal acceptable format to fit more media on your smaller portable device.  I would recommend ripping all your CDs to WMA Lossless on your PC, and then setting the device quality to be lower.  This assumes you have the sufficient space to store lossless versions of your media.

 

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I tend to run into many JAVA coded applications which are coded simply for LDAP access, but do not utilize Active Directory as well as they could be.  Here are some resources JAVA developers can utilize to create more effective integrations.

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