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Wednesday, February 20, 2019

SQL Server Standard cannot be used with cluster of more than 2 nodes

I was asked to help to count the licences for Microsoft based server environment.
So the customer had a four-node SQL Server Enterprise failover cluster and wanted to upgrade. At first I thought that they should definitely use SQL Server Standard as it is much cheaper, but then I found out that SQL Server Standard can only be used in a two-node failover cluster, so they had to use SQL Server Enterprise as four node cluster  was necessary.

Full feature SQL Server edition comparison is here 

Sunday, February 17, 2019

(Solved) RegTask: Failed to refresh site code. Error: 0x8000ffff in ClientIDManagerStartup.log

A few days ago I faced interesting issue with SCCM client installation in internet-based client management (IBCM) setup.

It was working fine, but somehow new client installations did not complete successfully. SCCM client installed successfully, but could not register.

So I opened ClientIDManagerStartup.log on client and saw following error

RegTask: Failed to refresh site code. Error: 0x8000ffff 

After some troubleshooting, we found that Certificate Authority CA certificate recently was renewed and this caused issues because Management Point was still using certificate which was issued before CA certificate was renewed and client certificate was issued after CA certificate renewal. 
The root cause of this was that Authority Information Access (AIA) was not configured correctly - it had not been published it internet. 
We changed AIA configuration, reissued certificates and clients could register to SCCM again.

Saturday, February 16, 2019

How to restore deleted user in Azure AD

One of my colleagues had accidentally deleted an Azure AD user and I had to restore to.

In fact this was an easy thing to do. Follow these steps:

  1. Go to Azure Portal -> Azure Active Directory -> Users -> Deleted users
  2. Select the deleted user and then click Restore User:

Furthermore if you want to find out who deleted the user, check Audit logs section in the same pane.

Deleted users are retained for 30 days and then they are permanently deleted. After these 30 days have passed neither you or Microsoft support can restore the user.

To my knowing there is no way to change the 30 day period.

Saturday, February 9, 2019

(Solved) OnSearchComplete - Failed to end search job. Error = 0x8024401c in WUAHandler.log

Mostly there are two explanations for error 0x8024401c in WUAHandler.log in SCCM - there are either problems in WSUS or there are some proxy misconfigurations.

In our case it was proxy, the proxy admins were introducing new proxy server and it was causing the issue.
So to solve the issue

  • Check proxy logs, that it is not blocking access to WSUS
  • Configure bypass to WSUS server
  • On client side check that proxy settings are correct, go to Control Panel -> Internet Options -> Connections -> LAN Settings
  • Use command netsh winhttp show proxy to check system proxy settings

Restart SMS Agent Host service after configurations have been changed, so SCCM client could use the new proxy settings.

Windows Server 2019 Standard and Datacenter feature comparison

As with previous Windows Server releases the major difference between Standard and Datacenter editions is with licensing. Standard allows to run 2 VMs, Datacenter unlimited number of VMs. And pricing usually is that Datacenter is approximately 5 times more expensive.

Here are differences in features. In addition to all Standard edition features, Datacenter includes:

  1. Shielded VM support and Host Guardin Service - to protect from stealing VMs by your virtualization admins
  2. Network Controller - to automate network configurations
  3. Storage Replica - to replicate entire storage LUNs
  4. Storage Spaces Direct 

Whole feature list is here:

Saturday, February 2, 2019

Should I disable User / Computer group policy sections for GPOs?

So the question is should I disable User or Computer sections in GPOs if they are not used. Many people believe that this will speed up GPO processing.

As it turns out if appropriate section is not used then disabling it will not speed up GPO processing.

Also, take into consideration this sentence from the article:

"For what it’s worth, don’t combine User and Computer policies into the same GPO. Split them out, link them to the appropriate OU’s, and for Pete’s sake, please avoid loopback whenever possible."