Thursday, 22 September 2011

Migrate 2003 DHCP Database to 2008 DHCP Database

Migrate WS2003 DHCP Database to WS2008 DHCP Database

Important Notes
A - Install the DHCP role on the WS08 server (do not authorise DHCP at this point)
B -  Stop the DHCP service on the WS03 server after export and before authorising the new DHCP server

1. Export DHCP database from the source WS03 server using cmd:
netsh dhcp server export C:\dhcpdatabase.dat all
2. On the WS08 server, copy the exported DHCP file to the C:\ directory
3. Run the below using an administrator cmd:
netsh dhcp server import c:\dhcpdatabase.dat all
4. Review all configurations to confirm everything has been imported correctly (see note B above)
5. Authorise the WS08 server DHCP service, a green arrow will appear when successful.
6. Test new DHCP server eg start up DHCP clients and confirm IP's are being provided.
7. After testing has been completed, on the WS03 DHCP server either disable the DHCP server service, uninstall the DHCP role or shutdown the server.

Choose the option which suits best, but remember you must never have two active DHCP servers on the same subnet.

A known issue sometimes occurs where the leased address data does not appear after the import has completed.  Fortunately this has been acknowledges by Microsoft and there is a solution which pretty much boils down stopping the DHCP service,  deleting the DHCP database and starting the DHCP service on the new WS08 server before the import (ie after step 2 above)

For more information on this workaround refer to this article-

* WS03 = Windows Server 2003
* WS08 = Windows Server 2008

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Powerchute Network Shutdown Version 3 Password Upgrade Issue

I use UPS's from APC because in my experience APC produce the most reliant and efficient products in the UPS business.  They have a few more competitors these days but I still think from an overall perspective they are difficult to beat.

APC have just released version 3 of their network shutdown software which communicates with their network management cards installed as an optional extra in their UPS (most popularly with the Smart-UPS models)

The biggest benefit of this new version is it's free!  My opinion is this software should have always came as apart of the Network Management Card pack but it originally cost approx £60 per licence.

During the process of upgrading servers to version 3 from 2.2.5 I discovered a bug were you cannot login into web portal after the upgrade has completed.  Thankfully this is easily fixed:

1. Stop the Powerchute Network Shutdown service
2. Edit the config.ini in the Program Files> Powerchute > Group 1 directory
3. In the first section [Network] add the below line
            password = YourPasswordHereYourPasswordHere being the password you want.
4. Start the service again and you will be able to login to the web portal as normal.  Part of this process also removes the above line in the config.ini which is important for security.

Note APC for some strange reason has decided to restrict the use of special characters in passwords for version 3 so don't include any when doing the above as you still won't be able to login.

Full details are available here.

Friday, 2 September 2011

Reset the Directory Services Restore Mode (DSRM) Administrator Account Password

It's very important you have a record of the Directory Services Restore Mode (DSRM) Administrator Account password for all your Domain Controllers.

You may be put in a situation were there is no such records such as starting a new job and you want to have these information recorded in case of an emergency.

I found myself in this situation and quickly went about standardising the DRSM password on all the DC's in the organisation.

This can be done quite quickly using the below steps and is valid for both Windows Server 2003 and server 2008:

1. Click Start> Run> enter ntdsutil.exe

2. Enter the command set dsrm password at the ntdsutil prompt:

3. Run the Reset Password command, passing the name of the server on which to change the password, or use the null argument to specify the local machine. For example, to reset the password on server DC1, enter the following argument at the Reset DSRM Administrator Password prompt:
Reset DSRM Administrator Password: reset password on server DC1

To reset the password on the local machine, specify null as the server name:
Reset DSRM Administrator Password: reset password on server null

5. You’ll be prompted twice to enter the new password. You’ll see the following messages:

Please type password for DS Restore Mode Administrator Account:
Please confirm new password:
Password has been set successfully

6. Exit the password-reset utility by typing “quit” at the following prompts:
Reset DSRM Administrator Password: quit
ntdsutil: quit