Best Practice Ezine #23 – SUS

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Guy’s Best Practice & Litmus Tests Ezine #23- SUS
and Recovery Console Password

Contents for Ezine #23

Recovery Console

Windows 2000, XP, and Server 2003 all have the wonderful Recovery Console.Either, launch Recovery Console from a bootable CD, or install it with thewinnt32 /cmdcons (not winnt /cmdcons). If you take my tip and install the 8MB offiles on the hard disk, then you will see ‘Recovery Console’ in the boot.inimenu.

As ever, test this Recovery Console before you need it. You may be surprisedwhen it prompts you for the Administrator’s password, you may be even moresurprised to realize that this is the SAM Administrator, even on a domaincontroller. You may be mortified that no-one knows the password for this SAMaccount administrator.

This week’s tip is to reset that Administrator password, either by usingNTDSUTIL on Server 2003 and XP, or by SetPwd on Windows 2000.
set dsrm password
Reset password on server yourservername.

For Windows 2000, get SetPwd

Type in google setpwd download
Once extracted, the syntax for setpwd could not be simpler

Guy Recommends: The Free IP Address Tracker (IPAT) IP Tracker

Calculating IP Address ranges is a black art, which many network managers solve by creating custom Excel spreadsheets.  IPAT cracks this problem of allocating IP addresses in networks in two ways:

For Mr Organized there is a nifty subnet calculator, you enter the network address and the subnet mask, then IPAT works out the usable addresses and their ranges. 

For Mr Lazy IPAT discovers and then displays the IP addresses of existing computers. Download the Free IP Address Tracker

SUS (Software Update Service)

My battle cry is: ‘Getting Started’

What I want to do is introduce to SUS and persuade you to download this add-on service.

SUS is proper server service which is different from that annoying little icon you see in the navigation area down by the clock.

The principle is that you download operating system patches and hotfixes from Microsoft to one of your servers. Then optionally, test the patches before deploying them to your clients. You may want to test the patch because there is no rollback, SUS installs ready or not.

SUS has three elements
SUS itself which runs on the server
AU which runs on the clients
Group policy which regulates which clients get which patches.

What SUS does is work with Intellimirror and Group Policy to support XP clients.The group policy template wuau.adm is responsible for the SUS updates. This wuau.adm comes automatically with Windows Server 2003.

1) Get the SUS product as a .msi from Microsoft (No worries it’s free)
2) Make sure that your server is running at least IIS v 5.0
3) Run the installation Wizard

However, SUS neither supports Windows 9x nor does it support Microsoft Office.

How to Install AU clients
Apply SP1 on XP or SP3 on Windows 2000 Pro – that’s all you need to do on the client side.

On the server, you need 500MB folder per locale. Rather like ‘Domain’, ‘Location’ or Site all have specific meanings in Active Directory, so ‘Approve’ is a keyword and a key action in SUS. In an ideal world you should test new patches before clients use them. Testing could be as little as installing the patch on one machine and seeing that it did not crash; or as much as launching all of your programs on all your different hardware. The point is that once the testing phase is over you must approve the patch.

See more on SUS here

See more information about Microsoft Windows service packs

Windows 8 Tips  •E 189 Windows 7 SP1  • E 157 Vista SP2  • Windows 8 Task Manager

E 135 Vista SP1  • E 129 Vista SP1  • E 130 Vista SP1  •E 50 W2K3 SP1  • E 34 XP SP3

E 23 SUS  •Free Network Device Manager  •Real-time Network Traffic Monitor  • Ezines