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There are many instances when programs are starting when the computer boots, bring annoying pop-ups and consuming resources. Most of them have a way to disable that feature, some of the more poorly designed ones do not. There's a way to disable it, using an configuration application called msconfig. It exists in all modern Windows versions:

windows start msconfig

Go to Startup Tab and uncheck any application you don’t want to launch during boot time. Click Apply and then OK.

Command PromptWe regularly share some of the scripts that our IT technicians and support staff puts together (or finds online), especially if we think it may be useful to someone. Below is an example of a windows script (batch) that replaces file names with spaces to underscores. (For example: "file name.txt" will be changed to "file_name.txt")

The script recursively goes through the directories and makes adjustments.

exchange-2013Q: We have switching our Exchange server to another one, but the autodiscover keeps reverting back to the old server. Is there a way to fix this?

A: You can manually bypass the Microsoft Exchange settings. (Below was tested on Exchange 2010 and 2013.)

 

Adjust the following registry settings. Depending on your version of Microsoft Office the number between "Office" and "Outlook" will change. For example, in Outlook 2007 it is 12.0, for Outlook 2010 it is 14.0, for Outlook 2016 it is 16.0:

On some occasions, when accessing an Remote Desktop Server that gives out licenses based on devices, you may get this error:

Error: The remote session was disconnected because the Remote Desktop client access license stored on this computer has been modified

You can fix this using the following steps:

windows logoQ. I would like to copy some data from a shadow copy image, is there any way that I can access it as a drive or directory (mapped or mounted)?

A. Yes, this can be achieved in the following steps:

Open command prompt and run:

vssadmin list shadows

This will produce the following output:

If you are trying to run an RDS server in a workgroup, you will most likely run into this error:

"Remote Desktop Services will stop working in 120 days if this computer does not contact at least a valid Windows Server 2012 license server. On the RD connection Broker server, use Server Manager to verify or configure licensing settings."

and 

"Remote Desktop Services will stop working because this computer is past grace period and has not contacted at least a valid Windows Server 2012 license server. Click this message to open RD Session Host Server Configuration to use Licensing Diagnosis"

or variations of above. 

Exchange Support and ConsultingMicrosoft has simplified the process of removing a mailbox from quarantine starting with Exchange 2013. (Before it was a more complicated process, involving registry edits).

Keep in mind that Exchange quarantines mailboxes for a reason. It tries to correct a problem automatically, but if it fails, it will quarantine the mailbox again, so the root cause of the problem needs to be identified.

First, you need to find which mailbox was quarantined. Open Exchange management shell and run the follow codelet:

windows 10To setup Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) you need to enable the Port 3389 which is the default port number. Follow the path listed below to enable the port for RDP:

Start | Control Panel |  System and Security | Windows Firewall | Advanced settings | Inbound Rules

Next locate Remote Desktop (TCP-In), Right-click, and Enable Rule.

windows 10The Software Distribution folder is a folder that is used to store temporary files, which the files are usually from Windows Updates. It’s useful to delete the contents of the folder when Windows Updates is not working properly. Or, if you need to free up space on the main hard drive, the contents of the Software Distribution folder is safe to delete. The Software Distribution folder is in the following location in File Explorer:

 C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution

postfix-emailSometimes we have emails going to a particular address, which cannot be stopped. There are many reasons, but most common is an invalid address, which pollutes the mail queue with invalid entries. The simplest way to solve this is by adding a DISCARD directive for postfix. 

If you don't have it already, add this line in main.cf

header_checks = regexp:/etc/postfix/header_checks

Let's say you've gotten a bigger disk (or just resized a VM partition) and now would like to use the extra space. Since for this example we are using LVM, the resizing has to be done using the following steps:

Assuming you want to use all of the free space, let's see what we got: 50Gb before resize

FFmpegThere are many tools, including free ones that allow for video conversion, however, many of them use GUIs and don't allow for automation of tasks. FFmpeg is a command line based tools which allows to do very neat video manipulations.

We would like to share this small script, which our IT specialists have used for one of our video conversion projects. It parses a directory, finds all flv (Flash video) files and converts them to mp4. This script can be added to a cronjob to run on a scheduled basis. Converted videos can be moved elsewhere upon completion. 

As mentioned, we've used ffmpeg to accomplish this task, running under Ubuntu 14.04. FFmpeg doesn't come with Ubuntu 14.04 and a package repository needs to be added manually first. 

ubuntu10The network configuration has changed in Ubuntu 18 from all the previous versions. The new version uses Netplan and it is somewhat harder if you don't know yaml. The discussion for pros and cons of this move by Ubuntu can be infinite (why change what's working; this is a tool, I don't want to learn the new ways, etc.), but this is a quick tutorial for quickly changing the IP address. (There's more information available on Netplan)

The network configuration files are located in /etc/netplan. Configuration file can be opened as below:

vim /etc/netplan/50-cloud-init.yaml

With comments removed, this is the configuration data for a simple DHCP setup: