Qtrees and Data ONTAP —continued

Last time I began talking a little about qtrees. I described qtrees as a kind of mini volume or sub volume, because the have many of the qualities of a volume. Qtrees often seem to be a little controversial in class.

Many people decide not to use them, not seeing any particular advantage, or deciding they are not worth the extra trouble. In some cases, such as a customer who is using the SnapVault product, using qtrees is generally advised and will make the product more useable.

There is another aspect of qtrees that I recently became aware of: the qtree stats command.

Suppose you have a set of volumes and qtrees that all share a single aggregate. Suppose also that these volumes and qtrees are used to support CIFS shares or NFS exports. Performance has degraded over time and you have identified a problem. You have used the statit command and found that disk utilization on this aggregate is too high. The next problem is to identify the exports and shares that are generating most of the load. One possible way of doing this is the qtree stats command.

Here is an example of qtree stats on my simulator:

Obviously, not much is going on with my sim. However, if there were activity, we would be able to identify the number of NFS and CIFS operations by volume and qtree. This is potentially very useful information. Notice, by comparing the output with qtree status, that in this case, the qtree stats command does not track operations by volume:

Exports and shares at the volume level and at the directory level cannot be tracked with qtree stats. But if we had exported and shared at the qtree level we would have an easy way to track utilization of those resources. This makes it relatively easy to see how busy these qtrees are both on an absolute basis as well as relative to one another.

Given the confusion, I will attempt to clarify, at the risk of adding more confusion.

October 13, 2008 (Computerworld) Microsoft Corp. announced today that the code name for its next operating system, Windows 7, will be the product’s official name.

http://www.computerworld.com/action/article.do?command=viewArticleBasic&articleId=9117098

Now that the official name for “Windows 7” is “Windows 7”, everyone is officially confused.

I’ve never been a big fan of using the year as part of the product name, e.g. Windows 2000 Server, Windows Server 2003, and Windows Server 2008, because it hides some useful information. I prefer the use of versions number, which helps clarify when it’s a major (architecture change) or minor (cleanup) release.

BTW, did you notice the switch from “2000 Server” to “Server 2003”? This happened when the 2000 Professional upgrade (the desktop release) became Windows XP – giving us the XP/2K3 pair, client/server pair.

Some say that the XP is for “eXPerience”. I’m of the opinion that XP is for the Greek letters “chi” and “rho” – Microsoft had been talking about its Cairo vision for years and this was pretty close.

Sorry about the distraction, I need to get back to the “version numbers”. Well, maybe one more side trip. What does the NT in Windows NT stand for? You and most people would probably respond: “New Technology” and I would agree if you wanted the ‘much later’ marketing answer. But actually it stands for “N-Ten”, code-name for the Intel i860, the initial development target for Microsoft’s new NT O/S. And the sticking of “Windows” on top of NT was a pleasant and fortuitous happenstance.

http://www.landley.net/history/mirror/ms/winserver2k3_gold1.asp

The first version of “Windows NT” was v3.1, not v1.0. Even though it was v1 of the O/S, Windows had progressed up to v3.1, after its v1 and v2. This gave us the happenstance of a popular interface (Windows) with a major new O/S (NT).

What followed was NT 3.5, NT 3.51, and finally NT 4 (the “To SUR, with Love” release for James Bond fans) with SUR being “shell update release” – major new interface, sometimes called the Cairo interface, first seen on Windows 95, but developed for NT. This is when we started “right-clicking”.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc749964.aspx

NT 4 was then, actually the fourth release and was reaching a normal maturity level for O/Ses – stable and commercially successful. But a number of companies, especially the larger companies, had shared with Microsoft, that no matter how good the O/S, they would not embrace a solution heavy in proprietary technologies (e.g. NTLM, NetBIOS).

Microsoft got the message and started a major, (new architecture) multi-year project to develop Windows NT 5 – note the major version number. NT 5 replaced, with considerable engineering effort, the proprietary parts with preferred industry standards (e.g. Kerberos, DNS, LDAP), while still maintaining backward compatibility.

At the very last minute, the marketing people decided to rename the O/S to Windows 2000. I can understand how everyone wanted something called 2000, at the time. But without the version number, and even worse, dropping the use of NT, the confusion began. The one advantage was that it faked the Windows 98 people into upgrading to a major new and completely different O/S (NT vs. DOS), while thinking that it was just a simple upgrade. The 98 people had been intimidated by the exotic NT.

With a major release (NT 5), there’s always a lot of cleanup to do. So engineering started immediately on a cleanup of the desktop (client) piece and soon was able to release NT 5.1 (minor release), known to the world as Windows XP.

On any of the O/S, you can type, at the command prompt, either “ver” or “winver” and the O/S will disclose the major.minor information plus any SP (Service Pack) details. As another happenstance, by using 95, 98, 98SE, ME, then XP as product names, Microsoft was able to move (fake out) the last of the installed base from the older DOS to a modern O/S, NT.

Next, engineering went to work on the Server half of the O/S and shipped Windows Server 2003, which is NT 5.2 (minor release), giving us the matched (cleaned up) pair of XP/2K3 – minor releases, “clean-ups” of the Windows 2000 (NT 5) major release.

After addressing the industry standards, Microsoft then turned its attention to “the security issue”. Microsoft had decided that they wanted to be known, in the industry, “for security”, not for a lack of security. XP SP2/2K3 SP1 is the matched security pair – the limit of what could be done without a major architectural release, NT 6.

NT 6 “Longhorn” was driven by major changes in the architecture to improve security (e.g. UAC, Service SIDs). Vista SP1/ Server 2008 is the matched security pair. Why would one upgrade to Longhorn (NT 6)? Answer: Security. IE7 has a unique “Protected Mode” on NT 6.

If you follow the “hidden” versions for Exchange and IIS, you also learn a lot about the major vs. minor releases. IIS is v6 on Server 2003, not v5.2 – critical information, if you want security for your web sites.
So, NT, the kernel (looking at the business side of things) has gone from 3.1 to 3.5, 3.51, 4.0, 5.0, 5.1, 5.2, 6.0, and then 6.1.

And Windows, the interface (looking at the consumer side of things) has gone from Windows 1.0 to 2.0, 3.0, 4.0 (9x/SE/ME), 5.0 (XP), 6.0 (Vista), and finally Windows 7.

But the attempt to clarify, adds a little confusion, in the fact that it looks like Windows 7 will still be using the “Longhorn”, NT 6.1 kernel.

If we’re just counting Windows releases, then Windows 7 works.

But the next release of the Server will probably, correctly be called Windows Server 2008 R2 – not a SP, not an architectural change, just a mid-life refresh, with new “roles/features”, what we saw with Server 2003 R2 (the first R2). This whole R2 thing is another discussion.

So Windows 7 could have been Vista R2. But with all the engineering focus on the interface, can you say “touch”, Windows 7 works for me. And, I’m hesitant to add, that it would allow the name Vista to slide into history.

If you’re not confused yet, Windows Server 2008 comes out of the box with a SP1 pre-applied (non optional). So when they ship its “first” SP, it will be called???? I’m going to stop now.

CCNA Wireless Certification

As I had mentioned in one of my recent postings, Cisco has just launched an exciting new series of certifications. The new entry level certifications are aimed at baseline administrator level staff.

We discussed Cisco CCNA Voice Certification in one of our recent posts.

The CCNA Wireless Certification is designed to meet the needs of the Wireless Engineer.

This aims to give you the required skill set for specialized job roles in wireless technologies such as administrator, engineer, and manager.

CCNA Wireless recognizes the critical importance of professionals supporting wireless LANS including Networking Associates/Administrators, Wireless Support Specialists and WLAN project managers.

The CCNA Wireless Certification also validates candidate’s skills in the configuration, implementation and support of wireless LANs, specifically those networks using Cisco equipment. Students completing the recommended Cisco training are provided with information and practice activities to prepare them for, configuring, monitoring and troubleshooting basic tasks of a Cisco WLAN in SMB and Enterprise networks. Employers will be able to validate their staff have the skills needed for basic wireless networking on a Cisco WLAN in SMB and enterprise networks after completing certification.

The prerequisite of the CCNA Wireless Certification Course is that you have to be a valid Cisco CCNA.

FYI, the exam number is:

640-721 IUWNE Implementing Cisco Unified Wireless Networking Essentials

Recommended Training:

IUWNE class ( Implementing Cisco Unified Wireless Networking Essentials)

To keep up with these new certifications and Cisco’s other wireless offerings, Unitek will be launching a Wireless Bootcamp in the new year. Stay tuned.

Qtrees and DATA ON TAP

I notice the subject of qtrees is often a source of confusion among students in my Data ONTAP Fundamentals classes. Part of this arises from the fact that, to the best of my knowledge, qtrees are unique to Data ONTAP and part of it come from the way they are often treated on Netapp’s own materials.

Qtrees are often described at “sub volumes”. This is a pretty good starting point. Qtree have many of the qualities of volumes in Data ONTAP. I have also heard people refer to them as super directories. Again, this is not a bad way of looking at qtrees either. To hosts access a volume with qtrees, they look like directories, yet they have many of the qualities of a volume.

Volumes all exist immediately below the root volume in the Data ONTAP file structure. The full path name for every volume starts with “/vol” and then the volume name. It is not possible to have a volume within a volume, so all volumes “plug in” at the same place, to /vol.

Qtree are similar. They exist inside volumes and they “plug in” to the volume at the root of that volume. The basic directory structure within Data ONTAP is “/vol/<vol_name>/<qtree_name>. Every volume plugs into the root “/vol” and every qtree plugs into the root of the volume. Nesting a qtree inside a qtree or under a directory is not supported.

Like volumes, qtrees have associated security styles. For volumes, the default security style is UNIX. (This can be modified though the options default.wafl_security_style setting, or by running CIFS setup and selecting NTFS only). For qtrees, the default security style is matched to the volume which contains the qtree. If we create a qtree in volume with the NTFS security style, that volume will also have a security style setting of NTFS. Of course, we can change it after creation with the “qtree security” command.

However, if we delve a little deeper, we will notice some inconsistencies. Look at this output from the qtree status command:

The qtree status command lists the qtrees on this system. It also lists the volumes. Also notice that if I want to change the security style of a qtree I use the “qtree security <path>” command. This is what I would expect. However, to change the security style on a volume, I also use the qtree security command:

This seems odd. From this it seems fair to deduce that every volume has an implicit qtree that goes by the same name as the volume.

CCSP Certifications vs CCNP Certifications

So I’ve been dabbling with the CCSP Certifications and I must admit they are one heck of a lot easier than the CCNP track!  The books are straightforward, the labs are simple enough and the exams are laughable.  Wow, is CCNP a brute in comparison!   2 exams to go and I’m done with my CCSP, a whopping 2 months of study!

…Looking back at it I think the CCNP has lent quite a bit of logic to understanding the security devices.  CCSP becomes really quite self explanatory after understanding advanced OSPF and BGP config… Coupled with the fact the CCNP now covers Firewall IOS & IPS in ISCW, QOS for policing in ONT courses.

New Features of Server 2008: Improved Web Services

Hey !!

As promised we’re going to keep exploring the new features of Windows Server 2008.  This time, let’s have a look the improved Web Services.

Windows Server 2008 includes improved Web administration, diagnostics, development, and application tools with Internet Information Services 7.0 (IIS 7.0), a major upgrade from IIS 6.0. Windows Server 2008 unifies the Microsoft Web publishing platform, including IIS 7.0, ASP.NET, Windows Communication Foundation, and Windows SharePoint Services.

Modular design and installation options allow installation of only the features needed, reducing attack surfaces and making patch management easier.
•    IIS Manager, a new task-based management interface, plus a new appcmd.exe command-line tool make administration easier.
•    Cross-site deployment allows you to easily copy Web site settings across multiple Web servers without additional configuration.
•    Delegated administration of applications and sites lets you give control to different parts of the Web server to those who need it.
•    Integrated Web server health management with comprehensive diagnostic and troubleshooting tools allow easy visibility and tracking of requests running on the Web server.
•    Programmatic access to configuration stores through WM or Microsoft.Web.Administration, a new management API that enables editing the XML configuration files for your Web server, sites, or applications.
•    Enhanced application pool isolation keeps sites and applications isolated from each other for greater security and stability.
•    Fast CGI support to reliably run PHP apps, Perl scripts, and Ruby applications.
•    Tighter integration with ASP.NET features and one configuration store for all Web platform configuration settings across IIS 7.0 and ASP.NET.
•    A flexible extensibility model enables customization such as the addition of new modules using either native or managed code.

Customize Microsoft CRM 4.0 Tool Bar by Adding a Custom Button

After my last post (Customize Microsoft CRM 3.0 Tool Bar By Adding A Custom Button), I had a few inquiries as to how to customize Microsoft CRM 4.0’s tool bar. So in this post I will walk you through all the steps necessary to accomplish this in Microsoft CRM 4.0.

High level steps:

  1. Add a new webpage for the button. In the last post, I showed how to create a new virtual directory under IIS. In this post I will just add a new webpage to the ISV folder.
  2. Edit the ISV Config file to add the button to the Lead form Action Tool Bar

Add the code for the button

The best practice is to create a directory with the name of your company in the ISV directory and then create a directory with the name of the application (button) you are adding to CRM. In this example, I have created an html file that simply outputs a message when clicked. Create the directories

/ISV/YourCompanyName/MyCustomButton

Place the code for the button in the above directory

/ISV/YourCompanyName/MyCustomButton/MyCustomButton.html

Edit the ISV Config to add the button to the tool bar

Tool Bar Custom Button

We will place the button on the Lead Form’s Action Bar

If you have not done so, you need to enable ISV customization:

  1. From the Navigation Pane, click Settings, click Administration, and then click System Settings.
  2. Select the Customization tab.
  3. Locate the Custom Menus and Toolbars section and click the lookup button.
  4. Select all of the available values.
  5. Click OK.
  6. Click OK to save the System Settings.
  7. Close and re-open Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 or just hit the F5 function key to reload.

Next we will edit the ISV Config file. For obvious reasons, please make a copy of this file as a backup before you edit it.

To edit this file you would have to export it from in Microsoft CRM 4.0. Once you exported it, make sure that you create a backup copy.

  1. From the Navigation Pane, click Settings, then click Customization, then click Export Customizations.
  2. Select the ISV Config
  3. On the Actions toolbar, click select Export Selected Customizations.
  4. Click OK to acknowledge the dialog box describing what will be exported.
  5. The file download dialog box appears. Click Save
  6. In the Save As dialog box, enter ‘ISVConfig’ in File name. Click Save
  7. Click Close
  8. Make a copy of the ISVConfig.zip file and rename to ISVConfigBackup.zip
  9. Open the ISVConfig.zip file
  10. Extract the customizations.xml file to a convenient location

Once you have created the backup copy, edit the ISV config file (customizations.xml extracted above) as follow:

Place the following node:

Tool Bar Custom Button

Tool Bar Custom Button

Save and close.

Now go to Microsoft CRM 4.0 and import this edited ISV.config file into Microsoft CRM.

Refresh Microsoft CRM 4.0.

Check this capability by opening a Lead record to see the button you just added.

RM
Microsoft CRM Consultant
Unitek Microsoft CRM Services