With dawn of the year 2016 almost upon us, Microsoft has released another build for it’s upcoming Windows Server & System Center 2016 suite of products. This Technical Preview 4 contains much new advancements and fixes based on customer feedback on the product clearly making it’s way as the cloud OS for next generation of computing.
Nano Server gets a new touch
Nano server, a headless installation option like server core which is going to be one of the installation option for Windows Server 2016 has improved a lot since last preview. In this release IIS & DNS server roles can be installed in Nano server in addition to existing Hyper-V & Scale-out File Server features.
Introducing Hyper-V Containers
Providing additional layer of isolation for Windows Containers, Hyper-V containers can be now deployed as virtual sandboxes to host application workloads. This technology utilizes the nested virtualization capability introduced in Windows Server TP4. Also you can use both docker & PowerShell to create, deploy and manage Windows Containers.
System Center 2016 Improvements
Another milestone is the System Center 2016 TP4 release with some awesome features for private cloud management. Now you can use the SCOM agent to monitor your Nano Servers in TP4. SCCM 2016 TP4 has introduced some new functionality to improve Windows 10 deployment experience via SCCM.
Mobile Device management (MDM): enhanced feature parity with Intune standalone – Many of the MDM feature that are supported via Intune standalone (cloud only) are also enabled for Configuration Manager integrated with Intune (hybrid) in this release.
Integration with Windows Update for Business – Now you can view the list of devices that are controlled by Windows Update for Business.
Certificate provisioning for Windows 10 devices managed via on-premises mobile device management
You can download Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview 4 & System Center 2016 Technical Preview 4 evaluation bits from here.
It’s been a while since my last blog post. I’m working on a DPM 2012 R2 test lab these days which I’ve planned to update to the latest UR version. When I checked for the latest UR7 got to know that the bits have been re-released.
As for the DPM team there is an issue in DPM 2012 R2 UR7 released on 28.07.2015 which causes expired recovery points on the disk were not getting cleaned up, resulting an increase in DPM recovery point volume after installing UR7. This re-release has addressed this concern and you can download the upadted bits via DPM 2012 R2 UR7 KB or Microsoft Update Catalog as of today.
OK I have updated to UR7 before 21.08.2015. Now what?
For those who are facing this dilemma should know that the re-released UR7 is not pushed via Microsoft Update and advised to manually install the new package on the DPM Servers with older UR7 package installed. The installation process will automatically execute pruneshadowcopiesDpm2010.ps1 PowerShell script which contains the fix.
There is no change in the DPM version (4.2.1338.0) in this re-release and it will remain same after the update. Also you will have to update the Azure Backup Agent to latest version (2.0.8719.0) prior installing DPM UR7 to ensure the integrity of your cloud backups after this release.
For those who like me updating to UR7 the old fashion way (wait for a month or two, lookout for bugs and then update) you’ve got nothing to worry.
During Microsoft Ignite, System Center Team has announced the availability of System Center Technical Preview 2 recently. Preview 2 will be ultimately renamed o System Center 2016 when it will be released next year and as of now has some great enhancements over the current version.
Improved Linux Management Capabilities – Preview 2 has Desired State Configuration (DSC), Native SSH support and improved LAMP server monitoring support for your Linux workloads.
Software defined Datacenter Management – The System Center vNext supports mixed mode cluster upgrades, enhanced Scale-Out File Server (SOFS) management, and deployment of software-defined networking (SDN).
New Workload Monitoring – This version is capable of monitoring Azure & Office 365 and SQL & Exchange server monitoring has improved monitoring scenarios.
You can download the installation files from here. Also you can download pre-configured VHD files for each system center component from below.
System Center Technical Preview 2 Virtual Machine Manager VHD
System Center Technical Preview 2 Data Protection Manager VHD
System Center Technical Preview 2 Orchestrator VHD
System Center Technical Preview 2 Operations Manager VHD
System Center Technical Preview 2 Service Manager VHD
A known issue has been identified in the latest Update Rollup for Data Protection Manager 2012 R2. Let’s see what is this issue and how to rectify same in this article.
When you are working in local DPM server or an attached secondary DPM server you may notice that the console crashes basically when you are searching through something or navigating from one section. Int his case even if you resatrt the console it becomes unresponsive and also cmdlets also enter the same state
Microsoft has released a hotfix package KB3040326 which address the above issue. Note that before you apply this hotfix you’ll have to backup the DPMDB database and after installing the hotfix you need to reboot the DPM server/s.
In my personal experience I would recommend you to wait a while before you apply UR5 in production systems until UR6 is released. But since UR5 has lot of improvements in new workload backups you may want to reconsider that option. For a list of new features in UR5 you can refer DPM Team’s announcement.