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Category Archives: Microsoft

Get Windows 8 MCSA certified between February 15th and May 31st and get a free Windows 10 exam

Microsoft has started a new campaign offering people that get Windows 8 MCSA certified between February 15th and May 31st  to get a free Windows 10 exam (697) when it is released. For more information about the offer see: https://borntolearn.mslearn.net/b/weblog/archive/2015/02/19/how-to-get-a-windows-10-exam-for-free

Based on the comments on the born to learn website it seems that this offer does not extend to people that are Windows 8 MCSA certified before February 15th … but I might be wrong. An alternative is to try to get access to free Microsoft Beta Exams by signing up as a Subject Matter Expert (SME) as described here: http://blog.bjornhouben.com/2012/09/17/how-to-get-access-to-free-microsoft-beta-exams/

 
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Posted by on February 24, 2015 in ICT, Learning, Microsoft, Windows

 

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Dropbox users get another 100GB of extra Microsoft OneDrive storage for free for 1 year

For those looking to get 100GB of extra Microsoft OneDrive (prevously named Skydrive) storage for 1 year, click the following link:
https://preview.onedrive.com/bonus

For those who missed it, you can also get an additional 100GB for 2 years. To see how, read my previous blog post.

 

 
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Posted by on February 22, 2015 in Cloud, ICT, Microsoft, Public Cloud

 

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Pluralsight is offering free access to 13 courses

Pluralsight is offering free access to selected courses. The offer is only available through April 30, 2015 and can be found here: https://offers.pluralsight.com/technet

There are 13 Pluralsight courses included with the TechNet benefit and I’m personally very interested in the ones about Azure. Here is the full list of the courses:

Microsoft Azure

Beginner

Intermediate

Windows Server 2012 R2

Intermediate

System Center 2012 R2 

Advanced

 

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Free PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC) training on February 25th and 26th

Microsoft Virtual Academy (MVA) is hosting 2 PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC) training classes on February 25th and February 26th:

  1. Getting Started with PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC)
  2. Advanced PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC) and Custom Resources

The links above provide include a course outline and a link to register for the Jump Start. And even if you can’t join live, the recordings will always be made available at a later time so you can watch whenever it suits you better.

PowerShell DSC is becoming increasingly important and I personally also still need to learn more about it and look forward to it.

I hope it’s useful to you as well.

 

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Get 100GB of extra Microsoft OneDrive storage for 2 years

For those looking to get 100GB of extra Microsoft OneDrive (prevously named Skydrive) storage for 2 years, click the following link:

https://login.live.com/oauth20_authorize.srf?client_id=000000004C12B387&scope=wl.signin%20wl.basic%20wl.emails%20wl.skydrive%20wl.onedrive_provision_quota&response_type=code&redirect_uri=https://preview.onedrive.com/callback.aspx

Previously I though this was only working for the United States (or from somewhere else using a proxy), but this worked fine for me from within the Netherlands.

Enjoy your extra cloud storage.

 

 
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Posted by on February 13, 2015 in Cloud, ICT, Microsoft, Public Cloud

 

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PowerShell – Book review of : Windows PowerShell Best Practices

Windows PowerShell Best Practices

Last week I completed PowerShell Deep Dives which got me excited again to read more about PowerShell. As such, I continued reading the next book on my reading list: Windows PowerShell Best Practices by Microsoft Scripting Guy Ed Wilson.

The book was released late January 2014 and is the most recent book about PowerShell that has been released to my knowledge. This means it includes PowerShell 4.0, Desired State Configuration DSC and references to Windows 8.1 and Windows Server 2012 R2.

In my opinion the book was very well written and contains a good mix of theory, sample scripts and “notes from the field” from many PowerShell specialists. The sample scripts are available for download at Technet Script Center.

The best practices that are described in the book are very recognizable and I had already adopted many of them based on the many great blog posts by the community. In the book they are all bundled and well explained including examples. Where the book really shines though in my opinion is that it describes how PowerShell is used in real-life, how it relates to many other processes within a company and what you need to consider.

I think this book is a must-have for anyone working with PowerShell. For those starting with PowerShell, I recommend first reading the books “Learn Windows PowerShell In A Month Of Lunches” and “Learn PowerShell Toolmaking In A Month Of Lunches” and then read this book.

Notes:

 
 

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PowerShell – Book review of : PowerShell Deep Dives

PowerShell_Deep_Dives

I’ve had the book PowerShell Deep Dives laying around since August 2013. I had read some parts of it because I follow many of the great PowerShell community members that contributed to it. But I hadn’t gotten to reading it completely yet until now.

The title of the book includes “deep dives” implies very deep technical content and I can assure you, this type of content is present in the book. some of the stuff I still need to wrap my head around to understand properly. On the other hand, other parts of the book are more simplistic which you might not expect from a deep dives book.

The book covers a very broad number of topics and technologies. What I liked is that the articles were written by professionals and community members that are specialized in or are very knowledgeable about this specific topic/technology.

As a result of having the broad number of topics and technologies, not all parts of the book might be relevant to you (especially as a deep dive). I found myself skimming over some parts later in the book since it is very unlikely it is or will become useful for me. This will differ from person to person though, so take a good look at the topics being covered in the table at the end of the article.

All in all it was a good read and I think I’ll use the book mainly as a reference for those times that I need the deep dive insights. The book can be ordered from by example Manning.com and all royalties go to charity: Save the Children

 

Part 1 PowerShell administration
1 Diagnosing and troubleshooting PowerShell remoting (Don Jones)
2 CIM sessions (Richard Siddaway)
3 Collecting and analyzing performance counter data (Arnaud Petitjean)
4 TCP port communications with PowerShell (Boe Prox)
5 Managing systems through a keyhole (Bartosz Bielawski)
6 Using PowerShell to audit user logon events (Mike F. Robbins)
7 Managing and administering a certification authority database with PowerShell (Cadims Podans)
8 Using PowerShell to reduce Active Directory token bloat (Ashley McGlone)
Part 2 PowerShell scripting
9 The 10 PowerShell scripting commandments (James O’Neill)
10 Avoiding the pipeline (Jeff Wouters)
11 A template for handling and reporting errors (Will Steele)
12 Tips and tricks for creating complex or advanced HTML reports with PowerShell (Jonathan Medd)
13 Using and “abusing” dynamic parameters (Bartosz Bielawski)
14 PowerShell type formatting (Adam Driscoll)
15 Scalable scripting for large data sets: pipeline and database techniques (Matthew Reynolds)
16 Building your own WMI-based cmdlets (Richard Siddaway)
17 Turning command-line tools into PowerShell tools (Jefferey Hicks)
Part 3 PowerShell for developers
18 Using Source Control Software with PowerShell (Trevor Sullivan)
19 Inline .NET code (Richard Siddaway)
20 PowerShell and XML: better together (Josh Gavant)
21 Adding automatic remoting to advanced functions and cmdlets (Karl Prosser)
22 Taming software builds (and other complicated processes) with psake (Jim Cristopher)
Part 4 PowerShell platforms
23 PowerShell and the SQL Server provider (Ben Miller)
24 Creating flexible subscriptions in SSRS (Donabel Santos)
25 Inventory database table statistics using PowerShell and SQL Server Management Objects (Robert C. Cain)
26 WSUS and PowerShell (Boe Prox)
27 Provisioning IIS web servers and sites with PowerShell (Jason Helmick)
28 Active Directory Group Management application (Chris Bellee)

 

 
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Posted by on June 7, 2014 in Automation, ICT, Microsoft, Powershell, Windows

 

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