Friday 21 November 2008

In depth technical talks!

On a daily occurrence, I have to support Active Directory. A short while ago I learnt about the Active Directory User Group (ADUG), I attended the inaugural meeting and I have to say, it was amazing!

When I work with AD, I would like to say that I could do anything blindfolded! However, being more honest, I can do a lot from experience, but the more in depth items require me to look through a book or read up a few articles online just to guide me on the right track.

I go to many seminars as I find them fascinating, and networking with people in the same industry can be very rewarding... and it is nice just to make new friends!

That being said, I find that after you go to a few presentations that are meant to cover different topics within a wide subject (such as AD), many are very repetitive and cover exactly the same area and have very little new content (I have even been to different companies that show the same slides!)

Anyway, all this changed at ADUG where a talk was given by XTSeminars (Stands for Xtremely Technical... and they are not lying!) The main presenter was John Craddock who was well supported by Sally Storey who was doing the demonstrations.

The talk started off being very technical and did not relent! I just wish I started making notes from the beginning. John knew the subject well and came across brilliantly. Sally was in charge of the KVM and switched from presentation to demonstration frequently which backed the talk up extremly well.

John and Sally make a brilliant professional team and I would highly recommend that if you need to learn something quick, XTSeminars is the way to go.

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Monday 10 November 2008


I have completely changed this post about 4 times now, I keep saying to myself, "I can't say that... can't do this!"... Blogging may be a little harder than I had first thought! rather than go on a complete rant, I thought my first post can be about recent problems with BT!

Here is two very recent things that have happened:

First story!

A friend of mine in a similar job had to support a Blackberry that was on a BT Contract. There was some sort of misconfiguration at BT's end and he needed to contact their business support team.

After explaining the problem to the person at the end of the phone, my friend got a response from BT that shows just how much training they give their staff. The response was:

"We sell Blackberrys?"

Suffice it it to say, the problem is still on going!

Second Story!

On Thursday, I had a job to fix a wireless laptop that was only connecting to the Internet periodically. Whilst this can be common, after a few minutes diagnostic, I had not actually seen this exact one before.

To those of you who do not know, Windows XP can only have one program at a time to monitor and change network settings.

The laptop was running Windows XP and had the standard Wireless Zero Configuration utility as well as the Intel Pro Set Wireless Manager (I think that both are very good).

Neither Wireless Zero Configuration or Intel Manager were set to manage the connection. I thought something may be corrupt, or maybe there was a failed installation of some other manager.

I opened up the Intel Manager as this has a nice button that automatically takes control of the wireless connection. I pressed it and the machine connected, everything working. I thought job done!

I browsed the Internet for about 30 seconds and it went dead! I took a look at the Intel Manager and to my shock, it was no longer the default manager, and even worse, neither was WZC.

I took a look in the services console and I found something called "Wireless Adapter Configurator". located in "C:\Program Files\BT Home Hub\Wireless Configuration\WirelessDaemon.exe"

I can not understand why you would ever need it, and unless every BT home hub has a hidden back door in, surly without a security key it can not automatically connect either?

By disabling the normal wireless programs, it seriously reduces wireless functions of a laptop. This program has no front end and just seems to mess up the wireless connection. In this case, it would not even allow my client to go on to his BT home hub!

I deleted the service and the files, and the Internet started working perfectly.

Why would anyone ever need to install any drivers? Or even need a disk with your Broadband. Most Modem routers have the ability to auto forward you to a configuration page after receiving DHCP settings, so why not do this!

Anyway, This is my first propor blog post done and dusted! I hope I will get some readers soon!


Saturday 8 November 2008

Well, it's about time!


Well, I am fed up of not having a blog!

For the past few years, I always say something like "I should tell someone about this" or hear funny stories that I want to pass on to others.

I started a blog a while ago, however due to time constraints, I never got around to doing more than the initial post! The blog was also linked to my company and I really want this to be a personal view coming from me so that I can speak freely and not link it to my company.

Please feel free to post suggestions and comments on anything you read here or would like me to cover in the future.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy reading what is to come!