Corporate Projects




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See below for a list of completed projects. Click on title to see more details on a specific project.



File/Database Financial System Server DR exercise - Tue, October 4, 2011



Bulk create 356 AD User Accounts with mailboxes - Thu, September 1, 2011



Install QuestionMark Perception v5.2 Server - Sun, August 28, 2011



Link Exchange 2010 and OWA 2010 with Symantec EV 9 - Fri, June 3, 2011



FEP 2010 installation - Fri, April 15, 2011



Active Directory Upgrade to Windows Server 2008 R2 64 bit - Tue, March 1, 2011



SCCM 2007 R3 upgrade - Sat, Februaury 12, 2011



Enterprise Vault Upgrade to v9.0.1 - Mon, December 27, 2010



ClamWin database not updating - Mon, December 6, 2010



Migrate SQL database server to new hardware - Sat, December 4, 2010



Deploy CAB file - Wed, October 20, 2010



Symantec Enterprise Vault Upgrade - Sat, June 19, 2010



SMS 2003 upgrade to SCCM 2007 - Fri, April 23, 2010



QMP upgrade to version 4.4 SP5 - Sat, March 20, 2010



Change local Admin password on all servers/workstations - Thu, March 18, 2010



PCounter upgrade - February 13, 2010



New corporate branded screen saver - Sun, December 13, 2009



Inactive user Logoff package - Tue, December 1, 2009



Disable net send command - Thu, November 12, 2009



ePO upgrade - Sat, October 24, 2009



Bulk create 416 AD User Accounts with mailboxes - Sun, August 30, 2009



Upgrade NST to CleanMail - Sat, August 15, 2009



Deploy SPSS 17 and its site licence - Mon, July 6, 2009



RAID reconfiguration on Dell Server - Fri, May 15, 2009



Install fonts remotely - Wed, March 25, 2009



Cleanup removed DCs - Tue, March 17, 2009



Deploy Google Picasa 3 - Sun, November 16, 2008



Record computer usage stats - Mon, November 10, 2008



Migrate to new print server - Sun, November 9, 2008



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File/Database Financial System Server DR exercise


Posted Tue, October 4, 2011

HP Server running Windows 2003 R2, operating as file server and Oracle database server for CYCOM (Financial System/Business solutions software). Audit of current backup procedure was done and based on findings, Symantec Backup Exec used for tape backups was re-configured for ensuring critical data was properly and regularly backed up. Oracle automated backups set up and configured using RMAN to dump data to disk and tape backup was then configured to pick these database backups up nightly. To complete Disaster Recovery (DR) exercise, a new Windows 2003 R2 server was setup, Oracle database server software was installed and CYCOM database backup files were restored to it from tape. These backup files were then used to re-create Oracle databases exactly as on original server. Then a Windows XP workstation was built and CYCOM client software was installed and used to connect to DR server and verify correct operation of CYCOM software.


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Bulk create 356 AD User Accounts with mailboxes


Posted Thu, September 1, 2011

Bulk created 356 Active Directory (AD) user accounts. Along with the AD account, an Exchange 2010 mailbox, a home drive and a roaming profile store with correct permissions were bulk created too. The accounts had to be created with the correct description and added to the correct security groups and distribution lists. Exchange mailboxes created using PowerShell scripts and home drives and profile store shares created on NetApp filer (cifs volumes).


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Install QuestionMark Perception v5.2 Server


Posted Sun, August 28, 2011

Two servers used, one for QuestionMark Perception (QMP) software/web site and one for database backend. SQL Server 2008 R2 installed and configured on database server and QMP software/web site installed on Windows 2008 R2 (64 bit) with IIS. IIS and server configured to work correctly with QMP and QMP linked to separate database server. Also access to QMP web site was secured using SSL web certificate.


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Link Exchange 2010 and OWA 2010 with Symantec EV 9


Posted Fri, June 3, 2011

Configure Exchange 2010/OWA 2010 and Symantec Enterprise Vault 9 to link to each other so users with Exchange 2003 mailboxes that were moved to Exchange 2010 can still seamlessly access their archived emails.


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FEP 2010 installation


Posted Fri, April 15, 2011

Microsoft Forefront Endpoint Protection (FEP) 2010 has direct integration to Microsoft System Centre Operations Manager (SCCM) 2007 and was installed on the SCCM 2007 primary site server. FEP 2010 is essentially a business antivirus software product with clients on servers and workstations that can be centrally managed using policies. These policies can be controlled using SCCM or Group Policy. For definition update deployment, 4 layers were used to ensure that clients always have latest definitions installed: FEP 2010 was configured to update via SCCM package, WSUS, UNC and Microsoft Update.


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Active Directory Upgrade to Windows Server 2008 R2 64 bit


Posted Tue, March 1, 2011

Windows 2003 domain with 4 domain controllers upgraded to Windows Server 2008 R2 64 bit domain. Unfortunately can't upgrade 32 bit server to 64 bit Operating System, so in-place upgrade not an option. One of the DCs (Domain Controllers) was offline (hardware failure) so had to be removed manually and new DC was brought up with Windows 2008 R2 and same name. 2 DCs were converted to member servers and taken offline and new ones with Windows 2008 R2 were brought up as DCs. Remaining DC was the most important one as it held all FSMO roles, was running Enterprise root CA, WINS, DHCP and IIS. These services could be manually migrated over to new server but this process would take a lot of time and was prone to things going wrong during the process. Algin Technology's UMOVE utility was used to automate the manual steps of moving these services one by one from one server to another. Finally domain time replication was setup to synchronise with Internet time servers and to replicate correct time to all networked domain clients and servers.


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SCCM 2007 R3 upgrade


Posted Sat, February 12, 2011

SCCM 2007 upgraded to latest R3 edition and latest SCCM and SQL updates were installed. Enhancements for R3 include: Centralised Power Management, Enhanced Scalability & Performance and Operating System deployment enhancements.


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Enterprise Vault Upgrade to v9.0.1


Posted Mon, December 27, 2010

Enterprise Vault 9.0.1 (Service Pack 1 for Enterprise Vault 9.0) is the first version of Symantec's automated email archiving software to support archiving of Exchange 2010. After server upgrade from version 8.0 SP4 to version 9.0.1, new client extensions were deployed to all domain workstations using SCCM 2007.


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ClamWin database not updating


Posted Mon, December 6, 2010

ClamWin used on Spam filtering server to check emails for viruses was recording warnings about virus definitions not being updated. Found out that problem is that user needs to be logged on for automatic updates to work (clamtray.exe needs to be running). Since this is a server, we can't rely on a user always being logged on, so solved this by using 'freshclam.exe' to run scheduled task that automatically updated virus database on a regular interval.


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Migrate SQL database server to new hardware


Posted Sat, December 4, 2010

Source server was running SQL Server 2000 with different databases and Inteum C/S (software used for managing Intellectual Property and Licensing Operations). Databases and software were migrated to new server running SQL Server 2005 with latest Service Pack. All references to old server from clients and other servers changed to point to new server.


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Deploy CAB file


Posted Wed, October 20, 2010

The cab file contained an ActiveX component with dll and ocx files. Analysed how the ActiveX installs and generated msi installer that was used to deploy this ActiveX component via SCCM 2007.


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Symantec Enterprise Vault Upgrade


Posted Sat, June 19, 2010

Completed a project involving the upgrade of 2 Symantec Enterprise Vault servers with a total of 697GB of data, from version 7.5 (2007) to latest version of Symantec's automated email archiving system software for Microsoft Exchange (version 8.0 SP4). The operating system on the 2 servers had to be upgraded from Windows 2000 Server to Windows Server 2003. Microsoft SQL server was upgraded from 2000 to 2005 and then the upgraded servers were migrated to new ones running Windows Server 2008 with EV data migrated to highly available locations (NetApp filer).


Symantec Enterprise Vault (EV) is a file and email archiving product of Symantec Corporation for use in large enterprises and medium sized organisations. Enterprise Vault provides an archiving framework that enables the discovery of content held within email, file system and collaborative environments for legal or compliance purposes. Enterprise Vault can also help reduce the amount of storage required for email or file systems (Source: Wikipedia).


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SMS 2003 upgrade to SCCM 2007


Posted Fri, April 23, 2010

Completed a project involving the upgrade of Microsoft Systems Management Server (SMS) 2003 to System Centre Configuration Manager (SCCM) 2007. Microsoft SQL server was also upgraded from Microsoft SQL Server 2000 to Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Service Pack 3. There were 2 SMS servers each with local SQL server. One SMS server was a primary and the 2nd one a child to the primary. The servers had 77 active SMS packages. After the upgrade was completed and fully tested the new SCCM 2007 client agent was deployed to all client computers on the network.


Microsoft System Centre Configuration Manager (ConfigMgr or SCCM), formerly Systems Management Server (SMS), is a systems management software product by Microsoft for managing large groups of Windows-based computer systems. Configuration Manager provides remote control, patch management, software distribution, operating system deployment, network access protection, and hardware and software inventory (Source: Wikipedia).


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QMP upgrade to version 4.4 SP5


Posted Sat, March 20, 2010

Completed a project involving upgrade of QuestionMark Perception (QMP) to latest version 4.4 with Service Pack 5. QMP was running on a single Windows Server 2003 Standard Edition with Microsoft SQL and IIS server on the same box. There were 2 instances of QMP one live and one test and the 2nd one had to be updated manually as the installer would only update default instance.


The Questionmark Corporation is a major supplier of online assessment software (E-assessment) to educational institutions, public sector employers and major commercial companies worldwide, the Staff and Educational Development Association of UK Universities outlines this and some of the resources of CAA, including Questionmark (Source: Wikipedia).


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Change local Admin password on all servers/workstations


Posted Thu, March 18, 2010

Had to find a way to centrally change the local Administrator password on all servers and workstations. There were 3 different passwords that had to be used, one for servers, one for normal workstations and one for 'open access' (shared use) workstations. The passwords had to be encrypted to ensure their security. To achieve this task, 2 SMS packages were created, 1 for servers and 1 for workstations that had logic to identify between open access and non open access workstations. All passwords were stored in an encrypted file and an extra utility was created that accepts passwords as input and generates this encrypted password file to be used for any future password changes.


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PCounter upgrade


Posted Sat, February 13, 2010

Upgraded PCounter (print charging software) on 2 servers to latest version. A script was written to make backups of PCounter settings and database regularly onto another server to help recover the servers in case of a disaster recovery (DR) situation. Windows task scheduler was used to run this script at 01:00 every day.


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New corporate branded screen saver


Posted Sun, December 13, 2009

Created a new corporate branded screen saver and then deployed it to all workstations via SMS. The screen saver would cycle through transitions of corporate logo and had to be displayed when no user was logged on to a computer and computer was left idle for 15 minutes or more.


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Inactive user Logoff package


Posted Tue, December 1, 2009

Had to find a way to log off inactive users. The problem was that users were not logging off their sessions and computer was left running unattended with logged on user. Apart from the security risks involved with this, it also reduced the number of available computers for the next user. An SMS package was created and deployed for this and settings were enforced using a GPO (Microsoft Group Policy Object).


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Disable net send command


Posted Thu, November 12, 2009

Investigated a good way of disabling net send command without breaking things like PCounter. The net send command can be used to broadcast messages to computers on a network and it was being abused. Care had to be taken in disabling it across the board though because PCounter print charging software used it to send a message to a user about available print quota and printing costs. In the end disabled access to the command for a certain group of users and at the same time allowing PCounter servers to use it to broadcast its messages. Also disabled telnet command for the same group of users as this too could be abused.


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ePO upgrade


Posted Sat, October 24, 2009

Updated ePO (McAfee ePolicy Orchestrator) to Ver 4.0.0 Patch 5. McAfee ePO software is used to centrally manage McAfee antivirus software. New antivirus engine checked into ePO so it can automatically be deployed to all clients on network. Same with latest versions of antivirus software and patches. Server running ePO is also running SQL server that holds ePO database. Database was growing quite big and making ePO reporting and other tasks slow, so T-SQL scripts were used to clean it up of old objects.


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Bulk create 416 AD User Accounts with mailboxes


Posted Sun, August 30, 2009

Bulk created 416 Active Directory (AD) user accounts. Along with the AD account, an Exchange 2003 mailbox, a home drive and a roaming profile store with correct permissions were bulk created too. The accounts had to be created with the correct description and added to the correct security groups and distribution lists.


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Upgrade NST to CleanMail


Posted Sat, August 15, 2009

No Spam Today (NST) spam filtering software that uses the award winning SpamAssassin engine to filter spam was updated to the next generation NST version called CleanMail. Configuration files and rules were ported from NST to CleanMail and a script was created to update spam filtering rules at regular intervals. The CleanMail filtering software is installed on 2 SMTP gateway servers and also does virus filtering using McAfee command line scanner. Software uses a scoring system to identify spam and the Outlook client on the end user side is configured using rules to move emails with a certain score and above to a spam folder.


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Deploy SPSS 17 and its site licence


Posted Mon, July 6, 2009

An SMS package was created to deploy SPSS (a computer program used for statistical analysis). Since a previous version of SPSS was already installed on all computers, the package had to remove previous version before installing the new one. It also had to check if the workstation held a valid non expired licence and if not install a new one.


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RAID reconfiguration on Dell Server


Posted Fri, May 15, 2009

Disk space was running critically low on a Dell server. More hard drives were purchased and the RAID container was reconfigured to utilise the space on the newly added extra disks. Then Windows itself had to be configured to see the extra space. All this was done without any server downtime.


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Install fonts remotely


Posted Wed, March 25, 2009

Created an SMS package to remotely install fonts onto a Windows machine. This proved to be a lot more complicated than just copying fonts to windows fonts since they had to be registered in the registry too.


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Cleanup removed DCs


Posted Tue, March 17, 2009

Microsoft Active Directory (AD) Domain Controllers (DCs) that were not removed correctly were still showing up in different places in AD. These were very carefully manually removed along with all leftovers related to them and verified that replication was still working correctly amongst existing live DCs.


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Deploy Google Picasa 3


Posted Sun, November 16, 2008

An SMS package was created to deploy Google Picasa 3 (software application for organizing and editing digital photos) to all workstation computers. Since version 2 was already installed on all computers, the SMS package had to fist silently remove this before installing version 3. Another challenge faced was the fact that it was popping up a dialogue box asking about removing the Google database during uninstall (which because of silent SMS installation was not visible and so uninstall of v2 was failing, making installation of v3 fail).


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Record computer usage stats


Posted Mon, November 10, 2008

Needed a way to record logon and logoff activities to capture computer usage stats. A utility was developed that run as a logoff and logoff script and was recording computer name, user name, operating system version and service pack and date/time to a central SQL database. This database was then used by in house apps team to generate computer usage statistics.


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Migrate to new print server


Posted Sun, November 9, 2008

One of two print servers was still running on Windows 2000 Server. A new server with Windows Server 2003 was installed and the old Windows 2000 print server was migrated to it. PCounter print charging software had to be migrated too along with all the print queues that were on the old server.


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