Blog with a focus on System Center and Azure

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Microsoft Certification Changes

At the beginning of Microsoft Ignite the changes to the certification program went live. In short this means that MCSE and MCSD tracks will be consolidated in 5 total tracks, 4 MCSE and 1 MCSD. This setup is reflecting the changes to the MPN (Microsoft Partner Network) program. Basically you get certified first for MCSA and with 1 extra exam that you can choose from an eligible list you can become MCSE. The following tracks are available: MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure MCSE: Mobility MCSE: Data Management and Analysis MCSE: Productivity MCSD: App Builder How to reach these certifications, for MSCE go to https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/learning/mcse-certification.aspx , for MCSD go to https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/learning/mcsd-certification.aspx The current tracks will retire per 31 of March 2017! Information about the changes can be found here Next to the changes to the MCSE and MCSD track, Microsoft launched the Data Science track in their Professional Program. The Data Science track…

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PowerShell direct, very cool feature

The last couple of weeks I delivered several custom PowerShell trainings and playing with PowerShell gave me the idea to write something about one om my favorite new features of Windows Server 2016 and Windows 10….. namely PowerShell direct. Actually you can also say that it is a new Hyper-V option… First of all PowerShell is getting more and more important and I experienced that my students got more and more enthusiastic once they saw the possibilities PowerShell offers. Ok, PowerShell direct offers you the option to connect from a Hyper-V host to a VM on that host using for instance PowerShell remoting. There are also other commands you can use that are using PowerShell direct and that are not PSRemoting cmdlets. When you use PSRemoting cmdlets, the WinRM service does not have to run. PowerShell remoting and the possibilities it offers is probably the most powerful feature of PowerShell there is in my opinion. With PowerShell direct…

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How will cloud change the IT-Pro?

I have been busy with cloud and training cloud and I notice that a lot of IT personnel is not really busy with the changes they soon will face. We all see and hear the talk about cloud, but what will change the IT-pro. First of all I think there is still a large group that is not really seeing the changes, or maybe that have not identified cloud computing, maybe neglect it to not have to think about it. Another part is busy with talking about cloud, but have not figured out exactly what it is. Then there is the group that thinks they will lose there jobs for the simple reason that we will start to work so effective and will be so cost effective that the world will need less IT-Pro’s. Then there are those that think they need to move to the cloud because everybody is…

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My goals for 2016

2016 is already in its second week, so time to write down the new goals for this year and think about the technologies that will become important or that I think I need to focus on. A lot will happen this year, System Center, Windows Server 2016 will be released and thus a lot to do and to discover. Azure is continuously moving, changing… I do not think that I will have to be bored or that there is nothing to do or to learn. Specifically I think that my focus will be on: Azure (in general); Azure Resource Manager templates; Windows Server 2016; Containers in Server 2016; System Center 2016. As a trainer I also want to do a couple of things and teach a couple of classes. In my agenda there is already an Azure training planned in april and lots of ideas for developing short deepdive trainings or maybe develop an online…

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Azure Resource Manager Policies

On the 29th of September we could see some new announcements at AzureCon. One thing that did not get that much attention was the announcement of Azure Resource Manager Policies. The announcement was a bit hidden in the following video: Azure Resource Manager Policies at 22 min 44 seconds. To me this was a pretty cool announcement, because you can control your deployments by using policies. Policies are like Role Based Access applicable on subscriptions, resource groups and individual resources. Policies are allow by default. The following scenarios can be arranged with policies: Chargeback, you have to apply a tag otherwise a deployment will fail; Geo Compliance, you want to roll out resource only in certain regions, like North and West Europe; Service curation, only roll out the services that you allow (compute, networking, storage, resources) and nothing else; Naming convention, make sure you resources are named according the pattern you…

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The Definition of Cloud

You would think that nowadays most people know what cloud computing or in short cloud is, but is that assumption correct? The reason for writing this blog is that I found out that this assumption is incorrect, there are many people that have a different idea of what cloud is. When I asked several people during workshops and trainings the answer that I got most was: a storage far away…. hence the term cloud. This told me it was time to write a short blog about the definition of cloud to clear up the “mystery”. Cloud is no buzzword anymore, but it has become part of our modern world. We probably all use something or some services that are connect to cloud services. The search for the definition of cloud leads to NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) in the United States. If you click here a pdf of NIST will be opened with the…

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Migration to ConfigMgr 2012 R2 with migration tool or Powershell?

There are still quite some companies that have to migrate their SCCM 2007 environment to Configuration Manager 2012 R2, even though it is 2015 now. One of the important things during a migration are migration of the software packages. The thing with the inbuilt migration tool is that packages will be migrated to … packages. Not what I would want, because I would like to use applications or better said, the application model. In the trainings that I give I always say that you should use the application model and move away from the legacy packages (unless really not possible). In a migration scenario where you use the inbuilt tool, you first have to migrate your packages to packages in CM 2012 R2 and then convert the packages to applications with a conversion plug-in. Both steps might require extra actions depending on the situation before migration can start. The idea to…

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How should you train your employees? Or yourself?

In a previous blog I wrote about the things I think IT pro’s should focus on and in this blog I will look at how you can keep your employees or yourself up to date with relevant knowledge. Let me start by saying that all the things written on this page are my own opinions. Teaching and learning is not straight forward, if you look at learning then you know that this is different for everyone. There are many books on this subject and just as many theories. What are the options you have as an employer or as an employee? From an employers point of view, first make a plan with your employee based on the knowledge he or she already has and what it is that the employee would like and what fits to the job. You can suggest trainings, but in my opininon the employee should have a big say…

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