Tech Craft

How-to, tips and tricks for working with today's technology. Covers Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Exchange Server 2003, IIS 6.0 and SQL Server 2005.


Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 Tips


Totally Obscure Yet Incredibly Useful

Create additional GPOs rather than editing the default GPOs

The Default Domain Policy and Default Domain Controller Policy GPOs provide the baseline policy for a domain. These policies are vital to the health of Active Directory in that domain. You should edit the Default Domain Policy only to set account policy. For other types of policy, you should create a new GPO and link it to the domain.

You should edit the Default Domain Controller Policy only to set users rights and audit policies. Otherwise, it is recommended that you do not make other changes to the Default Domain Controller Policy. If for some reason these policies become corrupted, Group Policy will not function properly.

Got an existing problem with Default GPOs fix them using dcgpofix.

Thanks for reading Windows.Tips. Hope you'll read Windows Server 2003 Inside Out -- It's got about 10,000 more tips.

William R. Stanek

Tweaking Microsoft Management Consoles and MMC Administration Tools

MMC has two operating modes:

  • Author mode
  • User mode

In author mode, you can create and modify a consoleís design by adding or removing snap-ins and setting console options. In user mode, the console design is frozen, and you cannot change it.

By default, the prepackaged console tools for administration open in user mode. To open in author mode, right-click the toolís icon, and choose Author. That's right, simply right-click the related menu item on the Administrative Tools menu, and then choose Author. You will then have full design control over the console. Just be sure to save the modified console with a new name.

Thanks for reading Tech.Obscure. Hope you'll read Windows Server 2003 Inside Out -- It's got about 10,000 more tips.

William R. Stanek

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Exchange Server 2003, SQL Server and IIS Tips


Scripts and command-line how-to and tips

Maximum cached file size causing problems with IIS?

By default, IIS 6.0 caches only files that are 256 KB or less in size. If you have large data or multimedia files that are accessed frequently, you might want to increase this value to allow IIS to cache larger files.

Keep in mind that with file sizes over 256 KB youíll reach a point at which caching wonít significantly improve performance. The reason for this is that with small files the overhead of reading from disk rather than the file cache is significant, but with large files the disk read might not be the key factor in determining overall performance.

To control the maximum cached file size, you create and then set the Windows Registry value MaxCachedFileSize.


Thanks for reading Infrastructure.Tips! If you found this tip useful, I hope you'll read IIS 6.0 Administrator's Pocket Consultant.

William R. Stanek

Get detailed information on running processes from the command-line.

You can view a list of running tasks simply by typing tasklist at the command prompt. As with many other command-line utilities, Tasklist runs by default with the permissions of the currently logged on user and you
can also specify the remote computer whose tasks you want to query, and the Run As permissions.

To do this, use the expanded syntax, which includes the
following parameters:

/s Computer /u [Domain\]User [/p Password]

where Computer is the remote computer name or IP address, Domain is the optional domain name in which the user account is located, User is the name of
the user account whose permissions you want to use, and Password is the optional password for the user account.

If you donít specify the domain, the current
domain is assumed. If you donít provide the account password, you are prompted for the password.

Thanks for reading Line.Man! If you found this tip useful, I hope you'll read Windows Command-line Administrator's Pocket Consultant.

William R. Stanek

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