Archive for the ‘Microsoft’ Category

MS Forecaster locked for maintenance

January 11, 2011 Leave a comment

This is kind of a weird one, so thought I would post in case I have to Google it again.

Today I had a user posting budget periods in MS Forecaster 7. While doing that the computer had locked up and he had to reboot. After rebooting nobody could get write access because the following message came up:

The system is currently locked for maintenance. Contact the Microsoft Forecaster Administrator for further information.

I found some references to this in MS KB962792 and a few other articles, but nothing that actually helped. The actual fix to the issue was easy:

  • Go into Forecaster client (not the web interface) as an administrator.
  • Click OK to the Maintenance message.
  • Go to “Tools” > “Recovery”
  • You will get a nasty message saying you better mean to do this or it may cause inconsistencies. Click “Yes”.
  • Click to re-index.
  • Wait and hope it fixed the problem.

After doing this users were once again able to log into forecaster.

Categories: Microsoft Tags:

Copy PuTTY sessions between computers

December 31, 2010 1 comment

PuTTYI just setup a new machine and realized I had too many PuTTY sessions to manually setup (dozens of them). For some odd reason PuTTY keeps this session data in the Windows Registry. I would have figured it kept the sessions info in a flat file. The registry key is located at:


If you’re not sure how to export and import registry keys this article has some easy to follow steps specific to PuTTY. It’s a fairly easy process, and I figure if your smart enough to use PuTTY you should be able to import/export registry keys without breaking your computer (but still, play with the Registry at your own risk!).

Now to take it another step you could have the sessions exported every day via the following PowerShell command:

REG EXPORT HKCU\Software\SimonTatham\PuTTY\Sessions c:\putty.reg

Simply put that into a  PS script and change the destination to where ya want (I have it set to c:\putty.reg). You could then use Task Scheduler to back it up once a day/week/whatever.

One final note: Earlier I posted about notepad++, which could be used to create the PS script and view/modify the reg file.

Categories: Microsoft Tags:

Tool Spotlight: Notepad++

December 31, 2010 1 comment

Notepad++Its time to spotlight another favorite tool. This time its a Windows notepad replacement called Notepad++. It is an open source project, in fact the motto on their website is “free as in ‘free speech’ and ‘free beer'”.  Why would a Network Engineer care about a notepad replacement? Here are just a few reasons:

Network gear config files need to be done with an ASCII editor. Programs such as MS Word can throw in extra characters if you’re not careful. Actually I do all config files with Notepad++, whether it’s for a Cisco Router or a Windows application. (**In UNIX/Linux i use VIM, thats a completely different post).

Notepad++ supports multiple tabs. If you are working on a lot of files this  feature is essential! You can even perform searches on multiple tabs. This is helpful when reviewing logs. You can also use plugins to compare different files (helpful to see what changed on a router config).

This is by far the best scripting tool I’ve used. There is built-in support for almost any scripting language you can think of. I use it mostly for PERL, HTML, and PHP. But recently I decided to learn how to script with PowerShell and it has built-in support for that. Here is an example of a PowerShell script I’m working on right now:

Notepad++ PowerShell example

Notice how nice this is to work with compared to notepad below:

Notepad PowerShell sample

There are a lot of other good Notepad replacements out there, but I happen to like this one the best.

Categories: Microsoft, Tools Tags:

Windows 7 does have a Run option

December 1, 2010 Leave a comment

I just had a colleague who was complaining because the “run” option was missing from the Start Menu in Windows 7. It took me a moment to figure out what he meant, since I use the feature constantly to open command prompt windows. Then I realized it was no longer called “Run”. Instead it is now called “Search programs and files”.

This is a great little feature. If you type in a command that would have previously worked in “Run”, it will bring up the exactly same thing it did then. Just type in the name of what you are opening and hit enter. Here are some examples of items open from here:

  • cmd – Command prompt
  • mmc – Microsoft Management Console
  • mstsc – Microsoft Terminal Service Client (remote desktop)
  • word – MS Word
  • excel – MS Excel

In addition you can search files and documents here. For instance if you type the word “test” it will search all files, documents, and outlook messages where the word ‘test’ is included. I haven’t used this feature much, but from playing around it seems to work very well.

Categories: Microsoft Tags: ,

DHCP Scope reservations with Server 2008 R2

August 20, 2010 2 comments

Recently I helped someone with a DHCP reservation issue on Server 2008 R2. Here is the scenario:

  • 2 Windows Server 2008 R2 domain controllers, each with DHCP server enabled, this was recently migrated from Server 2003
  • The address pool for each DHCP server is different (same subnet however), each pool has about 200 addresses
    • This was done to all for continuance of DHCP services in case one DHCP server went down, 200 addresses is more than enough to handle all DHCP requests
    • The scope for each was setup with only the IP’s needed, however is setup with a /23 subnet
  • There are about 2 dozen reservations, which are mirrored on each server

Recently while trying to add a new reservation the following error was received “The specified DHCP client is not a reserved client.” When Googling this error it would lead one to believe this is because the DHCP server is not authorized, which is a valid reason for this error. However in this case the server is authorized.

Instead the problem was the Scope Settings. Previous versions of Windows Server would allow reservations outside of the scope IP address range. Server 2008 R2 no longer allows reservations outside of the IP address range. The fix to this problem was to use the entire subnet in the scope for each, and exclude everything that isn’t needed.

Here were the steps used to fix this issue:

  • Went into the scope properties and changed the start and end IP addresses so it would include the whole subnet.
  • Went into “address pool” for the scope and created a new exclusion
    • The new exclusion is for all addresses I do not want the server to dish out addresses for

After the above change, reservations were once again able to be performed on both servers.

Categories: Microsoft Tags: ,

Empty langs.xml in Notepad++

February 15, 2010 1 comment

For the last few weeks I’ve had a problem with Notepad++. Whenever I would open the program I would get an error saying ‘load langs.xml failed’. After clicking OK it open and function fine. My operating system is Windows 7 64bit. The langs.xml file is located in C:\Program Files (x86)\Notepad++.

When I looked at langs.xml it was 0 bytes, there was no information in it. After a Google search I found this site which stated to rebuild the langs.xml with the langs.model.xml file found in the same directory. This fixed the issue. It appears to be an issue affecting 64 bit versions of windows.

As a side note I would recommend all administrators looking at Notepad++. The program is a quite powerful replacement for windows notepad. It is especially helpful for scripting and viewing certain types of logs.

Categories: Microsoft, Tools Tags:

Enable pinging Server2008

January 21, 2010 Leave a comment

One change Microsoft made with the Server 2008 Firewall was to disallow pinging the server by default. The other change is the Micrsoft built in firewall does not have a category for ping or ICMP. Instead pinging is restricted in the category File and Printer Sharing. To enable pinging of the server do the following:

  • Go into Start > Control Panel
  • In the Security section click on “Allow a program through Windows firewall’
  • Put a check in front of ‘File and Printer Sharing”
  • Click OK

You will now be able to ping the server. This is normally not an issue on my network as I use a 3rd party firewall solution. I would not recommend anyone trusting the windows firewall for production servers.

Categories: Microsoft, Security