Ever wanted to connect to a PC on your Windows network but hate entering in the IP as opposed to the actual computer name? Well my friends, it’s due to you needing an internal DNS setup and this video below is going to show you how to get DNS installed for Windows 2008 and Windows 2012. The Windows 2012 tutorial is a bit more indepth and also explain how to setup a forward and reverse zone as well.

Install the Windows Server 2008 DNS Service

Install the Windows Server 2012 DNS Service

Videos provided by ITgeared.com

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Let’s face it, there are times when our ESX / ESXi hosts simply stop responding to vCenter for one reason or another, which requires a management agent restart. But how do you do that you ask? Well I’m going to tell you. Please note that you’ll need the root password for the host and need to be logged in.

  1. Log into your ESX or ESXi server via Shell and if you can’t drop into shell then you’ll have to do this at the actual console.
  2. At the shell or console cmdline (logged in of course) type the following for ESXi
    “services.sh restart”

    –or– for ESX
    “service mgmt-vmware restart”

  3. With any luck you should see a messsage that the management services are being stopped and then another stating that it is being started.

And you’re done.

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I recently ran into an issue while updating my copy of Owncloud from version 6.0.1 to 6.0.3 and while the error occured while this specific update the error is common to MySQL so I figured why not share the love.

So in a nutshell when I tried to update the application I received the following error;

“An exception occurred while executing ‘SELECT `configkey` FROM `oc_appconfig` WHERE `appid` = ?': SQLSTATE[HY000]: General error: 2006 MySQL server has gone away”

Obviously that’s not a good error, especially since I needed MySQL to work properly. Well after scratching my head for a while I realized that MySQL was basically getting a massive update and the “max_allowed_packet=16M” that was set was to low. So get around the issue I had to edit the “/etc/my.cnf” file and boost the amount of allowed packets for MySQL to allow for upload. I my case I changed it to “max_allowed_packet=40M” to allow for the change though your results may vary and once whatever you’re doing is done you can revert it back.

Hope that helps you prevent your MySQL from going away XD

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Handy tip for enabling the slow query log for MySQL for Centos / Redhat linux.

  1. Stop MySQL by typing either “service mysqld stop” or “/etc/init.d/mysqld stop”
  2. Edit the my.cnf file, usually found at “/etc/my.cnf”
  3. Under [mysqld] add the following line; 
    log-slow-queries=/var/lib/mysql/slow.log
  4. Save the updated my.cnf file.
  5. Do not start MySQL yet. We need to add the slow log file and location. To do this tpye the following into the command prompt; 
    touch /var/lib/mysql/slow.log
    chmod 660 /var/lib/mysql/slow.log
    chown mysql:mysql /var/lib/mysql/slow.log
  6. With the slow log file and location created with the proper permissions, now you can restart MySQL with “service mysqld start” or “/etc/init.d/mysqld start”
  7. After some time review the log you created at “/var/lib/mysql/slow.log” using a text editor (Nano, Pico,Vi / VIM).

There you go! Hopefully this helps you drill down if you’re noticing slow performance due to MySQL.

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Having changing my environment I found my self moving from iSCSI to NFS and of course since NFS is a mapped drive, I found that Crashplan doesn’t support mapped drives out of the box. To get around this I had to implement the fix below. This was something I found on the Crashplan website and wasn’t easily accessible via a google search, so I’m re-posting it for anyone else who finds themselves in the same situation.

There are numerous guides on the internet but I found that none of them had all the required steps, at least not for me.  I think the authors made some assumptions about user knowledge and system configurations that meant that their guides were not as universal as they intended.  So my intention here is to create a comprehensive and fool-proof guide for all users.  What follows has worked for me.  Fingers crossed I don’t miss out any critical steps.  Thanks to Viktor on this forum for helping me finally figure out the complete process.

Before I continue please note that this is a guide for how to back up FROM a NAS to another destination using Crashplan.  It may also facilitate backing up TO a NAS with CP, but I have not tested this.

It should be noted that  the best solution to backing up FROM the NAS with CP is to install the CP headless client on the NAS.  This means you don’t’ need a PC turned on all the time whilst the NAS is being backed up.  However this is unsupported by CP and only works properly for NAS units with the right specification.  In my case my DS413j was too underpowered to do the job I wanted with the large data sets I wanted to back up.  Hence why I have moved to this approach (which is also unsupported by CP, but does seem to work).

And finally, I am using Windows 7 32bit.  From what I have read this approach may not work with XP; I am not sure if it supports the mklink command that will be required.  For XP I think you have to use the workaround proposed on the Crashplan Support site (although that is also not formally supported by CP)

So here goes

  1. Decide which PC you will be using to manage the back ups.  Ensure that the user account for that PC has a password.  The steps that follow will NOT work if the PC’s user account does not require a password.  If your PC user account does not currently require a password then click Start and then the user icon at the top right of the pop up.  Select “create a password for your account” and create your password.
  2. Having created a password you will now be required to enter it every time you login to that PC.  If you are the only user of that PC and don’t wish to enter your password every time then follows these steps
    1. Click Start and in the search box type “netplwiz”
    2. Open the netplwiz application from the search results.
    3. Untick the box for “Users must enter a username and password to use this computer”.
    4. Click OK
  3. Now you need to make CP logon as with your PC user account rather than as SYSTEM.  This step is omitted from most of the guides I have seen but is essential, and will only work if you have also done the previous steps.
  4. Click Start and type services.msc in the search box.
  5. Next perform the following;
    1. Open the services application from the search results.
    2. Scroll down to “Crashplan Backup Service” and right click and select “Properties”
    3. Under the Logon tab, click the “This Account” radio button
    4. Click Browse and enter your PC Username (eg Eric in my case) in the “Enter the object name to select” box.  Click “Check Names” and then OK.
    5. I now see “.\eric” in the “This Account” box.  You should see “.\your username”.  Enter your PC user account password twice and select OK.
    6. If you have followed all the previous steps you should now be prompted or given the opportunity to Restart the service.  Do so.
    7. Crashplan should now be running under your PC user account.
  6. Now you are ready to create the “symbolic links” from a folder on your PC to a corresponding “share” on your NAS, prior to beginning backing up.
  7. Create a folder anywhere on your PC that is convenient and give it a suitable name.  You will need to create one folder for each “share” on your NAS that you want to back up.  On my PC I have a data partition (D) on my primary drive (the one with the OS) and 2 other drives that are “spanned” to create a 6TB volume (F) that I use exclusively for backups from my NAS.  Therefore I created my “symbolic link” folders in my data partition (D).  As an example, I called one of them “DS1-photo” and its “path” is “D:\DS1-photo”.  I then created similar folders for my other NAS shares; media, video, music etc.
  8. Open CP and then under Destinations select “Folders”.  Click Select and browse to one of the folders created above, eg D:\DS1-photo”.  Select and click OK.  DO NOT CLOSE THE CP WINDOW!
  9. Via Windows Explorer, return to the folder you just selected and delete it.  Yes, I know this sounds weird but this is what all the guides say and it does work OK.  Not sure what happens if you don’t delete the folder at this stage, so its safest just to do as instructed.
  10. Click Start and type “cmd”.  DO NOT CLICK ENTER!  Right click on the CMD application in the results box and select “Run as Administrator”.  A black box window will open up.
  11. Type the following, replacing my example folder, NAS name and share name with your own details: mklink /d d:\DS1-photo \\diskstation1\photo then click enter.  You should get a reply that a symbolic link has been created between the chosen folder and the share on the NAS.  In my example diskstaton1 is the name of my NAS and photo is the share on the NAS I am trying to back up.
  12. Close the black window.  Via Windows Explorer return to the location where you created and then deleted the folder (eg D:\DS1-photo”).  It should have magically reappeared with a little arrow in the folder icon.  If you double click on this folder you should now see the contents of the relevant share on your NAS; in my case my photos.
  13. That is it, all done!  Repeat steps 5-10 for each share on your NAS that you want to back up.

Now in Crashplan you just use this folder as a SOURCE (even though you just created it as a destination) and backup to wherever you want, as for any other source folder. 

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