Advanced Windows PowerShell Scripting Video Training

Advanced Windows PowerShell Scripting Video Training
Advanced Windows PowerShell Scripting Video Training

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Question: Will DNSLINT work on Windows Server 2003?

The short answer is yes. DNSLINT works on Windows 2000 and later Operating Systems. DNSLINT helps you troubleshoot Active Directory . The link below will provide more of a description of DNSLINT and the download site from Microsoft.

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/321045

Class: 6421A Configuring and Troubleshooting a Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Question: What do you need to do to Active Directory to prepare it for Windows Server 2008?

You need to run the ADPREP command to populate your current Windows Server 2003 Active Directory environment with the schema and permissions to support the new features of Server 2008. You can get the ADPREP software on the Server 2008 source DVD at \sources\adprep folder.

You have several options at this point:
/ForestPrep – Use this on the server holding the Schema Operations Manager Role. This preps the entire forest.
/DomainPrep – Run this after /ForestPrep in the domain that you want to add a Windows Server 2008 Domain Controller. This must be on the machine with the Infrastructure Operations Master Role for the domain.

Reference: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc731728.aspx
Class: 6421A Configuring and Troubleshooting a Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure

Monday, December 29, 2008

What does /W stand for in server core “Start /w”

In Windows Server 2008 Server Core, only a command prompt is present as the user interface. You still have access to some of the GUIs. For example, type taskmgr and press Enter. The Task Manager will pop up. For most of the administration of server core, you will either use an MMC snap in that is redirected to the Server Core, our via command line directly on the Server Core box. The Start /W command is used before you initiate an action, like installing a role, that will take some time. This will cause the user interface to "wait" until the installation is completed. This prevents you from taking actions that will failure if done before an installation is completed.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Is certification worth it?

Is certificatoin worth it? That was an interesting question that one of my students gave me. I said that is a very good question. After all, completing a certification is costly. Here are my thoughts on this.

1) Certification is an investment. You need to choose your investments wisely. You will spend your resources in both time and money. Ask yourself, what am I going to get out of this? Are you motivated to increase your knowledge, your salary, or respect among your peers? Make sure the direction you choose gets you a good return on your investment. As in financial investment, poor decisions will hurt your long term gains. Wise decisions will increase your gains quickly.

2) Certification may not increase your income right away. When I completed my first MCSE on November 13, 1998, I was very excited. 10 months and 6 exams later, I did it. Once my certificate arrived at work, my co workers were congratulating me when the big boss himself came around. He looked at the certificate and said "Where did you get this? Out of a box of Cracker Jack?" I'm not kidding. Obviously no raise followed. He was more then willing to use my certification for his advantage. Lesson learned, you may have to move on to get that big raise. Another option is to include the certification as part of your formal annual goals with the stipulation of a raise when completed.

3) Will you be an expert after it is done? That depends on you. In the early days of Microsoft certification, people were getting some serious salaries from becoming an MCSE. Something happened though. MCSEs where appearing who could not do the job. They did not take the time to actually learn the material. They got those 6 figure jobs, messed up, and lowered the value of our certifications. When my students ask about the content of the exams I simply tell them to read their books and get as much experience as possible. Rarely have I ever come across a problem that was actually on the exams. I was successful because my preparations made me learn more than the exam.

4) Was it worth it? Well, I’ve doubled my salary from my first post college job. I’m able to provide for my family and keep a roof over their heads. I’ve been able to advance my career in the Navy because of my skills and I’m able to provide training and mentoring to aspiring IT professionals. In short, I’m enjoying being an MCT.

Certification is worth it.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Exchange Announcment

I'm happy to announce that I've completed my MCITP: Enterprise Messaging Administrator. Now that I've completed this processes, I'll begin taking my 7 years of Exchange administration experience and using it to enhance the official Microsoft curriculum for Exchange Server 2007. Like creating a fine wine, I'm taking my time and exercising patience in my class development. My attention will be turned on developing a 5 day track consisting of:



5047: Introduction to Installing and Managing Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 SP1

5049: Managing Messaging Security Using Microsoft Exchange Server 2007

5050: Recovering Messaging Servers and Databases Using Microsoft Exchange Server 2007

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!!!

Merry Christmas everyone!
from MCTExpert.com

Question: How do you turn off User Access Control in Windows Server 2008?

User Access Control is the source of frustration for many, and a job savers for others. It is also the source of one of my favorite Mac vs. PC commercials. Windows Server 2008 has UAC built is, as does Vista which is the client for Server 2008. You can turn off UAC in the same fashion in Server 2008 as you can in Vista. I recommend against it though. UAC is a key feature of Windows 2008 security. There are ways to modify its behavior. First, how to turn it off.

To turn off UAC
1. Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
2. In Control Panel, click User Accounts.
3. In the User Accounts window, click User Accounts.
4. In the User Accounts tasks window, click Turn User Account Control on or off.
5. If UAC is currently configured in Admin Approval Mode, the User Account Control message appears. Click Continue.
6. Clear the Use User Account Control (UAC) to help protect your computer check box, and then click OK.
7. Click Restart Now to apply the change right away, or click Restart Later and close the User Accounts tasks window.


If you access your server with an account that is in the local Administrators group, you can change the default behavior of the UAC prompt from prompt for credentials, to the less annoying prompt for consent. Here is how it works.

• Click Start --> Administrator Tools --> Local Security Policy. (You can also do this through group policy.)
• Expand Local Policies --> Security Options.
• Open the properties for User Account Control: Behavior of the elevation prompt for Administrators in Admin Approval Mode.
• Here you can:
o Elevating without prompting (Not recommended, but it leaves UAC turned on for non-administrators).
o Prompt for credentials (You have to provide a username and password.
o Prompt for consent (You just click Continue).

Reference: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc709691.aspx#BKMK_S3

Class: 6421A Configuring and Troubleshooting a Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Class Question: How big can a .PST file be?

The recommendation is no larger than 2 GB. Here is a link to explain the performance problems that you will have with larger files, a hot fix to help out, and several methods of how to handle the situation. http://support.microsoft.com/kb/932086

Class: Information Worker: Outlook 2007 Power User*
Date: November 12, 2008
Location: Indiana State University
*The Information Worker series is available through LanTech Training in Indianapolis. Please visit their website for more information

Monday, December 22, 2008

Sunday, December 21, 2008

TIP: Keep Your Travel Cost Down

When I was just starting out, another MCT told me that it is all about raising your rate. You know, that daily chunk of change that we charge our clients to provide trainer. There is another way to maximize your profits/lower your cost. Should you be in the position where you need to preset an all inclusive price, you may want to consider using one of those online bidding sites for your hotel.

Before you start bidding, wouldn’t it be nice to know what hotels in the area are accepting? Try http://www.biddingfortravel.com/. I personally use this site to determine which hotels accept what offers. I have one of those sleep comfort beds. It rocks. I also know that Ramada has them. I was able to use the information from BiddingForTravel.com to get Ramada to accept my offer.

By keeping your lodging cost low, you can maximize your profits after costs and even provide a better rate to your clients without cutting your profit.

How to do it:
- Browse to the site.
- Select the State.
- Take note that large metropolitan areas may be listed with the state.
-Locate the city you want and take a look at what they are accepting.
- You are usually going to stay in a good hotel if you do not go below 2.5 stars. I’ve stayed at 2 starts before and was perfectly happy.
- On your bidding site, offer about $5 under what they are accepting (unless a hotel you do not want may accept it) and at a star level one higher.
- On offer #2, raise the offer to the expected price and at the same star level as the hotel.
- If they do not accept, offer a few bucks more, but do not go below 2 stars.
- Remember, they tack on taxes and services fees once the offer is accepted.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Class Question: What does Auto Archive move?

AutoArchieve will move objects in exchange to the users Archieve.pst file at certain intervals, after the objects have reached a certain age. By default, AutoArchieve runs every 14 days. You can change this behavior be clicking on the Tools menu and then clicking the Options tab and the AutoArchive button.

When AutoArchive runs, it will move objects from your exchange folder to the archieve.pst file if they exceed the age listedbelow.


Inbox and Drafts : 6 months
Sent Items and Deleted Items : 2 months
Outbox : 3 months
Calendar : 6 months
Tasks : 6 months
Notes : 6 months
Journal : 6 months
Contacts : Do not expire

The Archive.pst file is stored in the users profile at
(WindowsXP) - C:\Documents and Settings\Username\Appdata\local\Microsoft\Outlook
(Windows Vista) - C:\Users\Username\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook\archive.pst

Class: Information Worker: Outlook 2007 Power User*
Date: November 12, 2008
Location: Indiana State University
*The Information Worker series is available through LanTech Training in Indianapolis. Please visit their website for more information

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Questions: What products are included in Windows Server 2008

Windows Server 2008 has a lot of extras that you can add on to enhance the server…..for free. We call them Roles and Features. Roles being major components and Features being enhancements to the roles. Here are a few.

AD RMS (Active Directory Rights Management Service)
AD RMS allows users, as opposed to Network Administrators, the ability to assign permissions to content. In the past, we as Net Admins, had to manage this. Now, with RMS aware applications like Office 2007, users can do this as well. Think about the PDF file that would not allow you to print it. Users can do the same to help protect their shared content. They can even determine who can read and modify their content, regardless of NTFS or file share permissions.

AD FS (Active Directory Federated Services)
AD FS allows you to securely share your networks resources with other organizations. The nice thing about AD FS is that you give access permissions to an organization and the other organization manages the user accounts. This give you the control off the access, the other organization the control of who gets the access, and SSO (Single Sign On) for the users.

Hyper-V
Hyper-V allows you to run servers (or clients) in a virtual environment. This allows you to save money in hardware and electricity. It alsow has some unique options to recovery quickly from a down physical server.

NAP (Network Access Protection)
NAP helps to protect your network. Let’s say that some who a users laptop mysterious lost its antivirus software while away from the office for a month. NAP can be set to not allow this client access to your secured network. Instead, it sends it to another network that will allow it to download and install the antivirus product, clean itself, and then admit it into the secure network.

Windows Server 2008 has many more features available at no additional cost to you. Visit the Windows Server Web Site for more details on what comes with Windows Server 2008.
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2008/en/us/default.aspx

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Class Question: Does Outlook Express support .PST files.

Outlook Express (and Windows Mail in Vista) do not support .PST files from Outlook. You can however, import both mail and contacts from Outlook if Outlook express is running on the same PC as Outlook.


Here are some instructions on how to import and export data in Outlook Express: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/270670



Class: Information Worker: Outlook 2007 Power User*
Date: November 12, 2008
Location: Indiana State University
*The Information Worker series is available through LanTech Training in Indianapolis. Please visit their website for more information

Monday, December 15, 2008

Remote Assistance offers over a VPN

In this day and age of Business 2.0, many organizations relay on VPN access for their users. You can offer them remote assistance. The process may be a bit more difficult. First off, you may have to use the clients IP address. You can ask the user for the IP address, but with Vista assigning both IPv4 and IPv6 addresses to each physical and virtual adapter, this could be frustrating for all parties. If you have access to the RRAS server the user is connected to, you can look up the properties of the connection. This should tell you the IP address to use in the offer. If DHCP Relay is enabled on the RRAS server, you may be able to look at your DHCP server for the IP address or use the name of the client.

Port issues on the local client, as well as the local network the client is on, will have an impact on your connection. I’ve found that DCOM port 135 seams to be the one most people are talking about. Here is the procedure to create an exception in the Windows Firewall for it (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/954386). Nothing can be done about a remote networks firewall settings. I found that Startbucks (Pay for use) and Panera Bread (Free Internet) allows me to remote access a VPN client.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Why have the Aero interface in Windows Server 2008?

That is a good question. Why would you need all that 3D eye candy and tie up funds in a video card that can run the aero experience? I have two reasons why.

The first reason is that some users may use Windows Server 2008 as there desktop. Yes, I have seen it. The second reason is that some users may connect via a terminal session. By enabling the “Desktop Experience” feature, as it is known in Server 2008, you are making the Aero experience available.

This also makes available the built in applications of Windows Vista. This includes such programs as Windows Calendar, Sync Center and Media Player.

To enable the Desktop Experience:
• Open the Server Manager.
• Click Features
• Right click Features and select Add Feature
• Check Desktop Experience.
• Click Next.
• Click Install.
• Allow the server to reboot.
• The shutdown may take a few minutes.
• The Resuming Configuration window may be active for a few minutes befor confirming the installation.
• Close Server Manager.
• Click Start
• Type Services.msc and press Enter.
• Right click the Themes service and select the Startup Type: to Automatic.
• Click OK.
• Right Click the Themes service and click Start.
• Right click the desktop and select Personalize.
• Click Theme.
• In the Theme drop down menu, select Vista Theme.
• Click OK.
• Wait for a few moments and the Vista look and feel will become your interface.


On a trouble shooting note, you may still not get all of the Aero experience. If this is the case, download the Vista drivers for your video card. Not all the necessary drivers may be shipped with Server 2008.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Class Question: When you have multiple accounts, what e-mail address will the “Reply” button place if the original message was not addressed to you

This answer not coming from Microsoft, but it sounds reasonable.
When you have multiple accounts configured in Outlook, the account that's used to send mail varies based on several things:

• When you compose a new email, Outlook uses the email account that you've configured as your default.
• When you reply or forward an email, Outlook uses the email account that the message was originally received on.
• In either case, you can explicitly specify the account to use via the Accounts drop down item that appears next to the message's send button.

The original post that I read this off of came from Leo Notenmoon (http://ask-leo.com/why_is_outlook_sending_email_using_the_wrong_account.html)


Class: Information Worker: Outlook 2007 Power User*
Date: November 12, 2008
Location: Indiana State University
*The Information Worker series is available through LanTech Training in Indianapolis. Please visit their website for more information

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Correction to a Lecture: Outlook Voting Buttons

On occasion, I do discover a mistake that I made in class. Below is part of the long list of Questions and Answers I sent to Indiana State University following my presentation of Outlook Power User. I keep track of all questions that my students ask, in regards to the material, that we cannot answer in class and I email them the results of my research.


I found a portion of the lecture that I skipped over concerning voting buttons. While reviewing the voting button setting in Technet to discover if it is possible to receive the result over Outlook Anywhere, I found that I skipped a step. Below is the complete procedure from creating the email to viewing the results.

1. Start by creating a new e-mail.
2. Address the email and give it the subject and body that you want to use.
3. Click the Options tab
4. Click Use Voting Buttons.
5. You can use the present voting options or click Custom.
6. You have the option of clicking Save Sent Item and telling Outlook to use another folder or to use the Default Folder which will place the message in your Sent Items folder.
7. Send the message.
8. Once you have responses, go to Sent Items (Or whatever folder you saved the message to).
9. Open the original email that you sent.
10. In the upper left hand corner in the Show area, click Tracking. This will show you the results.

• For your users to vote.
o When they receive the message, have them look in the upper left hand corner of the window in the Respond section.
o Click Vote and select the their option.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

To Use Group Policy to Configure Exclusive "Offer Remote Assistance"

In Windows XP, we had this neat feature where our users could ask us to remote control their computers. The reality was us asking them to ask for remote support. This caused a lot of frustration for our users to be able to utilize this very helpful tool. Below is a section describing how to designate Experts to offer users remote assistance. The users simple need to Accept the offer.

  • To Use Group Policy to Configure Exclusive "Offer Remote Assistance"
    As needed, see Appendix B: Resources for Learning About Group Policy for Windows Vista, and then edit an appropriate GPO.
  • Expand Computer Configuration, expand Administrative Templates, expand System, and then click Remote Assistance.
  • In the details pane, double-click Solicited Remote Assistance, click Disabled, and then click Next Setting.
  • For the Offer Remote Assistance setting, click Enabled, click Show, and use the Add button to accounts of support professionals who you want to allow to offer assistance.

Reference: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc766399.aspx

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

I little bit of Netiquette

Like most other MCTs, I do a lot of research. I read a lot of blogs from other trainers and generally have a positive experience. I do want to remind everyone that we can respectfully disagree with each other in a professional manner. I’ve read some downright nasty comments to some people’s posts. Written communication is very difficult to interpret. When we communicate we have the ability to use inflection in our voices to convey a message. We can also use body language to convey that message and to see if it was received as intended. In written communications, we have neither immediate feedback nor any way of determining if the message that we sent was received as intended.


Here is a quick exercise that I use while teaching leadership to our Naval personnel. On a piece of paper, write down all the ways that people communicate with each other while standing face-to-face. After you have completed your list, cross out everything that is not valid when you communicate via e-mail. You will see what you have to work with is very small.


In short, if we want to disagree with someone, first finish reading the post. Often, I read comments that sound like they were formed in the first 3 sentences of a two paragraph post. Then, disagree in a respective fashion if you still feel the need to.


As for the authors (I’m guilty on this one), be careful in your choice of words. Authors need to select words that will properly convey their meaning. Often I've had my posts or comments that I've made taken completely out of context because I did not take the time to choose the correct words.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Class Question: Does Instant Search in Outlook 2007 require Windows Search?

On Technet, I found this line in an article talking about Extending Windows Search:
Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 or later has instant search powered by Windows Search and does not require installation of a separate toolbar.
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc771093.aspx

In another article from the Windows 7 (That’s Vista’s replacement) the engineering team talked about the future uses of Windows Search. Windows Search, or Indexer, is open for use by developers. Even the Google Search Bar uses it. By all indications, it is not going away. The idea is to already search your files before you do. That way you get faster response times. The indexer does have some intelligence though. I knows that there are some folders that it does not need to search. It also knows to slow down its activities once the user starts to utilize the PC and to stop all activity if needed. It also only needs to run once. After that, it only indexes changed files.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Exchange Announcement!!!

I completely forgot to post this. After managing an Exchange system for 7 years, I finally took the Exchange exam (70-236) and passed.

What does this mean for my clients?
Starting in early 2009, I’ll be offering Exchange classes.

Why not right now?
I’m working on my MCITP Enterprise Message Administrator credential. That takes a large chunk of my time. I also want to make sure I’m adding value to each class that I instruct beyond the course guidance from Microsoft. In the end, it will be a better class for my students.

Friday, December 5, 2008

TIP: Making sure you are dressed

Sometimes I can be a little obsessive in preparing to go somewhere to instruct. I have a simple rule when it comes to how many clothes to bring. Always bring an extra days worth. You never know when you are going to spill your breakfast on your shirt or when you are going to pop a button. That reminds me, a small sewing kit can do wonders.

I like to start off day 1 in a tie. It sets a more professional tone. The rest of the week really depends on the environment. A few weeks ago I stepped in for a friend and instructed her Outlook 2007 Power User class at Indiana State University. I walked in with a tie and the first thing they said to me was to take it off if I like. It's better to be a little over dressed then under dressed. By the way, keep the short sleeves with a tie for the Nerd Herd. Were long sleeves.

A reversible belt also comes in handy. It does not matter if you are packing brown or black/blue pants. Just flip the buckle to the show the appropriate color. Several times I had to make the late night Big Box Mart run because I packed black, but needed brown.

Just remember, if you want to charge that higher rate or get higher evaluation marks from your students, dress for it.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Class Question: Can you take one users .PST file and have another user open it?

Yes you can. If the user entered a password when they created it, you will need the password. I’ve done this several times. Remember, opening up a .PST file from a newer version of Outlook into an older version will not work. I’ve had to do this several times at work for people. You need to click File à Import and Export. Then click Import from another program and select Personal Folder File (.pst). Don’t forget to check the Include Subfolders option when it is presented.


Class: Information Worker: Outlook 2007 Power User*
Date: November 12, 2008
Location: Indiana State University
*The Information Worker series is available through LanTech Training in Indianapolis. Please visit their website for more information

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Class Question: Can you set up a reoccurring e-mail?

Outlook does not support recurring e-mail. Microsofts recommendation is to create a script that send the e-mail and to launch the script using Task Manager. Microsoft also provides instructions on how to e-mail a custome task for in a reoccurring fashion: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/239087

Below is a sample script from Microsoft Script Repository for sending an SMTP mail message from a .vbs script file.

Set objEmail = CreateObject("CDO.Message")

objEmail.From = "monitor1@fabrikam.com"
objEmail.To = "admin1@fabrikam.com"
objEmail.Subject = "Atl-dc-01 down"
objEmail.Textbody = "Atl-dc-01 is no longer accessible over the network."
objEmail.Send

Make sure you have the SMTP service installed and use Task Manager to run this script.


Class: Information Worker: Outlook 2007 Power User*
Date: November 12, 2008
Location: Indiana State University
*The Information Worker series is available through LanTech Training in Indianapolis. Please visit their website for more information

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Hidding folders users do not have access to

Through the years that I've spent supporting networks and their users, I've come across a common problem. I often have problems with having to give access to shared folders to users that also contain folders that they do not have access to. I'm of course the bad guy when I have to tell them that they do not have access to those folders. How dare I. Well, Windows Server 2008 (and Windows server 2003 SP 1with a plug in) offers a solution. It is called Access-Based Enumeration.



Access-Based Enumeration allows the operating system to filter out all the folders that the user does not have access to when the user browses to the shared folder. This helps to reduce user frustration, tech support calls, and increases user productivity by reducing the number of folders they see that do not apply to them.


So, how do you implement this magical wonder? Well, first off you need to have Distributed Files System installed and your distributed files configured. Next:

•Click Start --> Administrator Tools --> Share and Storage Management
•Open the properties for your distributed folder
•Click the Advanced button.
•Check Enable Access-based enumeration.

There is also a hotfix for Windows Server 2003 SP1 and Windows XP SP2 to be able to use DFS.

•http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;898900


Download for Windows Server 2003 SP1: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=04a563d9-78d9-4342-a485-b030ac442084&DisplayLang=en

Monday, December 1, 2008

Class Question: Is there a way to restore the “Default” settings in Outlook for a user?

If by “Default” you mean the way there email works:
• Open Outlook.
• Click Tools -> Options.
• Click the Mail Format tab
• Click Stationary and Fonts.
• Click Theme.
• Select No Theme.

According to Microsoft (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/822005) the appearance of your documents (email in this case) is controlled by templates. The default template for Outlook 2007 is normal.dot. Replacing this file with a clean copy will restore it to normal, should it become corrupted.

As for the user’s Outlook profile as a whole, thus far deleting it may be the only way to clean up a profile. Make sure you follow good backup procedures before doing this. First delete the profile on the users computer. Then, create a new Outlook profile from them. As long as the profile in Exchange was not removed, Exchange and Outlook will re-sync the users data.


Class: Information Worker: Outlook 2007 Power User*
Date: November 12, 2008
Location: Indiana State University
*The Information Worker series is available through LanTech Training in Indianapolis. Please visit their website for more information

Thursday, November 27, 2008

What do I do if one of my FSMO server crashes?

This scenario happens from time to time. Not to worry. Here is a simple procedure to get your through. This was copied directly from http://support.microsoft.com/kb/255504. I've used this procedure several time. Also on that knowledge base article is how to transfer the roles. This should be done if you are taking one of the FSMO servers down for maintenance.

1. Log on to a Windows 2000 Server-based or Windows Server 2003-based member computer or domain controller that is located in the forest where FSMO roles are being seized. We recommend that you log on to the domain controller that you are assigning FSMO roles to. The logged-on user should be a member of the Enterprise Administrators group to transfer schema or domain naming master roles, or a member of the Domain Administrators group of the domain where the PDC emulator, RID master and the Infrastructure master roles are being transferred.
2. Click Start, click Run, type ntdsutil in the Open box, and then click OK.

3. Type roles, and then press ENTER.

4. Type connections, and then press ENTER.

5. Type connect to server servername, and then press ENTER, where servername is the name of the domain controller that you want to assign the FSMO role to.

6. At the server connections prompt, type q, and then press ENTER.

7. Type seize role, where role is the role that you want to seize. For a list of roles that you can seize, type ? at the fsmo maintenance prompt, and then press ENTER. For example, to seize the RID master role, type seize rid master. The one exception is for the PDC emulator role, whose syntax is seize pdc, not seize pdc emulator.

8. At the fsmo maintenance prompt, type q, and then press ENTER to gain access to the ntdsutil prompt. Type q, and then press ENTER to quit the Ntdsutil utility.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Class Question: Does Instant Search in Outlook 2007 require Windows Search?

On Technet, I found this line in an article talking about Extending Windows Search:
Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 or later has instant search powered by Windows Search and does not require installation of a separate toolbar.
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc771093.aspx

In another article from the Windows 7 (That’s Vista’s replacement) the engineering team talked about the future uses of Windows Search. Windows Search, or Indexer, is open for use by developers. Even the Google Search Bar uses it. By all indications, it is not going away. The idea is to already search your files before you do. That way you get faster response times. The indexer does have some intelligence though. I knows that there are some folders that it does not need to search. It also knows to slow down its activities once the user starts to utilize the PC and to stop all activity if needed. It also only needs to run once. After that, it only indexes changed files.


Class: Information Worker: Outlook 2007 Power User*
Date: November 12, 2008
Location: Indiana State University
*The Information Worker series is available through LanTech Training in Indianapolis. Please visit their website for more information

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

TIP: Easy way to save some money

I'm finding more ways to help keep my out of the pocket expenses down. While I'm instructing, I go through a lot of bottled water. I know, the bottle takes centuries to bio degrade. I refuse to drink that funny tasting water at the hotel though.

Here is a little math. Let's say that you instruct 130 days a year. You go through 2 water bottles a day. From the hotel, that is around $1.50 per bottle or $390 a year. Here is a tip, stop at the grocery store and buy their bottled water. Here is a more greener and cost effective tip. Bring an empty reusable bottle. Stop at the grocery store and by a gallon of water. Refill every evening.

OK, you may onlysave about $200 a year. Keep an eye out for more cost savings tips.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Class Question: Can the administrator determine the contents of the “Safe Sender” list?

This answer comes from the Microsoft Supportability e-newsletter: http://blogs.technet.com/asiasupp/default.aspx?p=3

1. Create a share folder on server, say Junk E-mail, and give everyone read permission. Create a text file name SafeSender.txt. Input email addresses into file (one address one line).
2. Install "Microsoft Office 2003 Resource Kit" on the Domain Controller.
3. Start Active Directory Users and Computers (ADUC), Right Click on the OU in which users account is present, Go To "Properties", Click on "Group Policy" tab.
4. Select the Policy in effect, click on "Edit". It will open "Group Policy Object Editor". Right click on "Administrative Templates" under "User Configuration" -> All Tasks -> "Add/Remove Templates" -> Click on "Add" -> Select "Outlk11.ADM" and click "Open" -> Click "Close".
5. Expand "Microsoft Office Outlook 2003" under "Administrative Templates" -> Expand "Tools Options" -> Expand "Preferences" -> Click on "Junk E-mail".
6. In the right pane double click on "Specify path to Safe Senders list".
7. Click on "Enabled" and under "Specify full path and filename to Safe Senders list" type UNC path of SafeSender.txt file (e.g.\\Server\JunkE-mail\SafeSenders.txt).
8. Double Click "Overwrite/Append Junk Email Import List" to configure if you want to keep user's own list.
9. Click on OK. Close "Group Policy Object Editor". Click OK again. Close Active Directory Users and Computers.
10. Log on to client machine and edit the following registry entry:

HKey_Current_User\Software\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Outlook\Options\Mail
DWORD = JunkMailImportLists
Value = 1

Note: This registry key should be deployed to the client machines for successfully deploying the Safe Senders List. We can use Group policy again to deploy this key. The value of this registry key will turn back to zero after Outlook applies the safe sender list from group policy. So if you need to modify the list, please change the value to 1 again.

11. Log off from the client machine and log on again.
12. Launch Outlook. Now you can see the email addresses in the Safe Sender list.

NOTE: The same procedure described above can be used to specify "Safe Recipients" and "Blocked Senders" list.

We also can use the Custom Installation Wizard or the Custom Maintenance Wizard to deploy such lists. Please refer to the following article for more information.

How to use the Custom Installation Wizard or the Custom Maintenance Wizard to customize user profiles to load default junk e-mail filter lists in Outlook 2003
http://support.microsoft.com/?id=927470



Class: Information Worker: Outlook 2007 Power User*
Date: November 12, 2008
Location: Indiana State University
*The Information Worker series is available through LanTech Training in Indianapolis. Please visit their website for more information

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Should I wait for Windows 7 Before Taking a Class?

The short answer is no. I’ve been reading the blogs from the Windows 7 development team and all indications are that Windows 7 is built on Windows Vista. If you are looking at getting a jump start at Windows 7, go ahead and look into a class on Windows Vista.


Microsoft currently offers 7 classes that target Vista. I highly recommend that you go through the syllabus of each class before committing. You will find sections of each class that are clearly for IT Pros entering the field and sections where you really pick up the new features of Vista. Here is another bonus. The Vista classes are also the stepping stones for Server 2008. Vista is the client for 2008 so naturally what we learn in a vista class also applies to server 2008.
Below are the current class offerings from Microsoft which are Vista specific.

Course 5105B: Deploying Microsoft Windows Vista Business Desktops
http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/syllabi/5105bfinal.mspx

Course 5115A:
Installing and Configuring the Windows Vista Operating System
http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/syllabi/5115A.aspx


Course 5116A: Configuring Windows Vista Mobile Computing and Applications
http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/syllabi/5116afinal.mspx


Course 5117A: Installing, Configuring, Troubleshooting, and Maintaining Windows Vista
http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/syllabi/5117afinal.mspx


Course 5118A: Maintaining and Troubleshooting Windows Vista Computers
http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/syllabi/5118afinal.mspx


Course 5119A: Supporting the Windows Vista Operating System and Applications
http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/syllabi/5119afinal.mspx

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Class Question: How many calendars can I see at one time?

You have the ability to see multiple calendars at once in outlook. You can have up to 9 monitors in Windows Vista so that means you can see quite a view. Here is how to do it.

  1. Open Outlook
  2. Click Calendar.
  3. Click Open Shared Calendars.
  4. Type in the name of the users calendar you want to view and click OK.
  5. The other user's calendar will appear in the navigation pane in the People's Calendars group.
  6. Now, just check the box next to all the calendars that you want to view.

Tip: If you want to compare them on top of each other:

  1. Right click the name tab on top of each calendar.
  2. Click View in overlay mode.
  3. The calendars will become transparent and on top of each other.
  4. Reverse the process to undo it.

Class: Information Worker: Outlook 2007 Power User*

Date: November 6, 2008

Location: Indiana State University

*The Information Worker series is available through LanTech Training in Indianapolis. Please visit their website for more information

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Question: What event ID tells you that your DHCP scope is full?

In the Event Log, you will see event IS 1020 from source DhcpServer. An example is below.

Event Type: Warning
Event Source: DhcpServer
Event Category: None
Event ID: 1020
Date: 27/12/2004
Time: 10:15:50
User: N/A
Computer: MyServer
Description: Scope, 192.168.16.0, is 100 percent full with only 0 IP addresses remaining.

The DHCP server also has a log file located at %systemroot%\DHCP. The problem is that this event will not be listed there. For a complete listing of all events for the DHCP Log, browse to: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/298367

Class: 6421A Configuring and Troubleshooting a Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Class Question: How do I save files to my hard drive in Outlook 2007?

Saving your Outlook files to your hard drive has both advantages, and disadvantages. An advantage is that if you are using POP3, your e-mail will be there while you are offline. Another one is if your Exchange account is close to its size limit, you can move e-mail to your hard drive and free up space in your Exchange account.

The disadvantage of this is that you are now responsible for backing up your data. If your hard drive crashes, you lose that data.

We first need to create an Outlook Personal Folders File.
  1. Open Outlook.
  2. Click File --> Data File Management.
  3. Click the Data Files tab.
  4. Click Add.
  5. Select Outlook Personal Folders File (.pst) and click OK.
  6. Select the name of the file and where to store it.
  7. Click OK.
  8. Give the file a name. This is the name that will appear in Outlook.
  9. If you want to encrypt the file, also give it a password.
  10. In your Navigation pane, right mouse click your newly added personal folder and click New Folder.
  11. Give it a name.
  12. Under Folder Contains, select what this folder will hold. This is so Outlook knows how to display the data.
  13. Click OK.

You new folder is on your hard drive and ready to accept data.

Class: Information Worker: Outlook 2007 Power User*
Date: November 6, 2008
Location: Indiana State University
*The Information Worker series is available through LanTech Training in Indianapolis. Please visit their website for more information

Monday, November 17, 2008

Class Question: How can I tell how much of my Quota space I'm using in Outlook 2007?

This one was a killer to find an answer for. As a matter of fact, I'm shocked at the answer. I've asked around and I've search the net until for a few hours. Every web site that I went to, most of which ended up being University self help sites, told you what your quota was. The question though, was how can you find out.

Thanks to Indiana University Technical Services for posting the answer.
  1. You must be using Outlook Web Access (Premium). Yes, I said OWA, not the real deal.

  2. In the lower left of the window, on the navigation bar, click Mail to make sure you are in the correct view.

  3. In the upper left, you will see the folder list. Your name will be displayed near the top. Hover your mouse pointer over your name. A small box with your quota information will appear. (see image below).


If anybody knows how to find this in Outlook 2007 itself, please post a comment. I'm still shocked that this appears to be in OWA and not the real deal.

Class: Information Worker: Outlook 2007 Power User*
Date: November 6, 2008
Location: Indiana State University
*The Information Worker series is available through LanTech Training in Indianapolis. Please visit their website for more information

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Windows Vista SP2 Beta

The beta release for select customers of Vista SP2 happened on October 29th according to the Windows Team Blog. A few items that were listed:

· This is a service pack for both Vista and Server 2008.
· Blue-Ray native support.
· Support for BlueTooth 2.1
· Faster search capability.

No word yet on the general release to the public. SP1 was released in the spring so I’m sure we still have a little bit of a wait. Let’s go over a few best practices when it comes to deploying SP2 in your environment.

· Always test your applications in a test environment.
· Role out SP2 to your trusted test users after your testing.
· Document any issues and their resolutions.
· Deploy in managed groups so any undetected issues can be caught before the issue is widespread.
· Have a roll back plan (This includes user data).

A well tested and planned rollout makes the difference between a nice bonus and a scorching review.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Class Question: How to share your Outlook calendar with others?

Here is another on from my friends in Terra Haute. Outlook allows users the flexibility to give others access to their information without the need to make a call to tech support.



You can grant anybody access to by:


  1. Start Outlook.

  2. Click Go --> Folder List.

  3. Right mouse click Calendar and click Properties.

  4. Click the Permissions tab.

  5. Set the Default to Reviewer.

At this point, you can also set permissions to individuals.



  1. Instead of setting Default, click Add.

  2. Select the user you want to add anf click OK.

  3. Select the user you just added. By default, they are set with Free/Busy They can see when you have free time, but no other details. Set to Reviewer to let them see more.
Class: Information Worker: Outlook 2007 Power User*
Date: November 6, 2008
Location: Indiana State University
*The Information Worker series is available through LanTech Training in Indianapolis. Please visit their website for more information

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Class Question: When you Export a .PST from Outlook 2007, is there a GPO setting to have "Include Subfolders" checked?

Class Question: When you Export a .PST from Outlook 2007, is there a GPO setting to have "Include Subfolders" checked?

This one stumped me. I had to refer to another MCT on this. He did not believe it was possible to do it via a GPO, but did say that an administrator can do it through PowerShell. For the user, they will have to make sure they check that box when exporting a .PST file.


Class: Information Worker: Outlook 2007 Power User*
Date: November 6, 2008
Location: Indiana State University
*The Information Worker series is available through LanTech Training in Indianapolis. Please visit their website for more information

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Class Question: How do I share my Outlook 2007 address book with my co workers?

This is a question that came up in an Outlook 2007 Power User class at Indiana State University. I found two possibilities for this one.


1) Use Microsoft Windows SharePoint

2) Office One Note 2007


In SharePoint, you can create a contact list for your entire team and then each member of the team can link that address book to Outlook by clicking the Link to Outlook at the top of the contact list in SharePoint. SharePoint 3 is a feature of Windows Server 2008. As such, someone with access to your Windows Server 2008 server will have to activate this feature and set up your users with appropriate access.

Office OneNote 2007 is another option. OneNote will allow you to create a shared notebook that you can populate with address information. Your team members will be able to access the shared note book and view the address data.


Class: Information Worker: Outlook 2007 Power User*

Date: November 6, 2008

Location: Indiana State University

*The Information Worker series is available through LanTech Training in Indianapolis. Please visit their website for more information

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Some Features of Windows 7

I've been seeing more popping up around the Internet regarding Windows 7. Here are some of the features and their usages that I've found so far.



Jump Lists - By right clicking an icon, you get a list of options for that application. I know, nothing mind bending here. If the application uses the system API, you will also get a list of recently used files in that application.



Libraries - Libraries will allow you to view your data in a new way. It looks like it is part of Windows Explorer. You can customize it to organize the presentation of your files to suit your needs.

Touch-Screen PCs - The mouse commands have been changed to allow you to use your PC as a touch screen. We've seen Windows Touch being used by NBC's political analysis Chuck Todd. Now that functionality is moving to the PC.


Lower system requirements - One of the big complaints about Vista was the extra power under the hood that was required. According to Microsoft, today's hardware will be able to run Windows 7.


Device Stage - This on looks interesting. Microsoft is allowing device vendors to tailor a screen that pops up when you plug in a device, the way they want it. It will include the options for that specific device, but it could also include links. These links can be for what ever the vendor sees fit. Driver update site, replace parts, additional services.


Action Center - This is where all those little nasty pop ups are going. Microsoft did good in their attention to security in Vista. The route that was taken ending producing my favorite Mac vs. PC commercial. I'm happy to say that the UAC is not long on or off. It has two steps in between to still alert you, without you having to click anything.


Microsoft has been working to adapt the PC more to how the users work. The calculator even has some functions that I used to use a spreadsheet for. They are also utilizing the Office 2007 Ribbon in more applications. The side bar is no longer around, but the gadgets that we've grown to love are still there. The release data is still not set. Like all MCTs, I'm waiting for the new load of course ware.


I'll have more on Windows 7 as more details are released.

Monday, November 3, 2008

How do I Become a Trainer?

Two friends have recently asked me this question. I started off with a warning to them. First off, be prepared to spend a lot of time. Working with the technology is one thing. Passing the Microsoft Exams is another. Teaching it is even more difficult. You see, anyone can click around a screen. Most people can read a book or memorize a practice exam. To be able to present the material to a room of people from high school grads to 30 year veterans is a different ballgame. It is however, a very rewarding experience.

As my wife would attest, I do spend a lot of time in my geek world. I am always learning, digging deeper, trying to find that detail that will make my class worth the experience to my students. It takes a lot of dedication. But how do you get to instruct? Microsoft has it all up on their web site on how to become a Microsoft Certified Instructor. It takes an investment both in time and finances. I was an MCP (Microsoft Certified Professional) for 10 years before I made the move to MCT status. You need at least one Microsoft Certification. The problem is that just one will limit your arsenal of classes that you are authorized to instruct. I’m authorized nearly 200, but I am not even going to attempt to teach that many. That is because I maintained the level of MCSE for all these years. You then need to take a Train-the-Trainer class. I had to fly to San Francisco to take mine. Once you complete the class, you can apply to be an MCT and pay the enrollment fee.
Is training for everybody….no it is not. For those of you who are able to make the commitment you fill find a challenging, but rewarding career.


How long until I can teach? That is up to you. You first need to prepare. Generally, you teach 2.5 to 3 modules per day. I will take from 2 to 10 hours to prep for each module depending on how new the material is to me. Right there that tells you that you could spend upwards of 75 hours before you teach a class the first time. I spend at least an hour of prep per day prior to each class day and then I still go back through to make improvements to my presentations. Be ready to have a lot of dedication. You can be an independent, contracted instructor or be on staff at a Microsoft Certified Learning Site. The choice is yours.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Use WIM to store your classes.

As I continue in this line of work, I’m constantly faced with the same issue. How do I preserve all the data that I have accumulated? I’m beginning to think that I have the MCT download site sitting in these little USB powered boxes in front of me. I like to add a little value to the classes that I teach. Don’t get me wrong. The people at Microsoft do good work in developing these classes. As the instructor on the front lines though, I know that my students expect more. As a result I have extra labs, handouts, downloads and then some. Well how do you keep all this organized? Imaging.

I know, what are you talking about? Am I supposed to image my computer for each class? Of course not. You can image your files and restore them later. Let me just tell you a big advantage. My 5115A class with all the VMs, books, and my notes comes in at over 8 gigs. After I ran the imagex command with the /compress maximum switch the total file size is 1.8 GB. At that size, I was able to easily fit 5115 and 5116 on a single DVD as a backup. Sealing them up takes time, but deploying them is a breeze.

Rapid deployment can be a life saver when you show up on site and nobody has deployed the VMs for the class. It has happened to me before. I brought several DVDs and passed around my USB hard drive to the students while I started class. It was still 2 hours before everyone had the VMs running. Utilizing the new WIM image format, you can significantly reduce your rollout time in these situations by utilizing the WIM format.

You do not need to zap any hard drives for this. You are merely adding files to the hard drive. Why not zip them? Well, the WIM format takes advantage of single-instance storage. That means if the same file appears 8 times in what you are imaging, it will only be stored once. That saves significant storage space and increases deployment speed. Give it a try.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Using the Reliability Monitor as a Lie Detector

There are some days that we feel like parents. Our kids come back with something expensive that we gave them and it is broke. They have no idea what happened to it. All they know is that they want you to either fix it or get them a new one. Being the superior support personnel we all are, we ask our usual round of questions only to get vague answers in return. What if I could tell you that you could eliminate the “What did you install/uninstall” question? How about even getting rid of the “Did anything crash” question? With the Reliability Monitor, you can.

Your start the reliability monitor by opening it as an MMC Snap-in. You can also click Start and type rel. At the top of the search results, right mouse click Reliability and Performance Monitor and select Run as Administrator. If you right mouse click Reliability and Performance, you can connect to that other user’s computer. Using the Reliability monitor, you can see when things went south on that client. You can see what crashed, what was removed and what was installed.




In this image of the System Stability chart, you can click on each day to see what went on. We had a pseudo way of doing this in XP with the System Restore Points. What you click through the System Restore calendar you got a little detail about what was changed that caused the restore point to be created. My personal record for dealing with a user who was not truthful is 2.5 days. Once I uncovered the truth, the problem was resolved in 20 minutes. Image the time, money and frustrations that we could have saved with this tool.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Class questions for 5118A on October 6, 2008

Question for class: 5118A
Class Date: October 6, 2008
Location: Lantech Training – Indianapolis, IN
Below are the questions that we had to place in the “Question Parking Lot.” We answered them in class but I want to share with my readers what our up and coming MCPs are thinking about.

Question:
Where can we get a copy of Standard User Analyzer?

Answer:
The Standard User Analyzer can no longer be downloaded on its own. Microsoft has moved it into the Application Compatibility Toolkit 5.0. You will also have to install the Application Verifier to get it to work. This move makes sense since its purpose was for developers to determine if their creations will work in Vista. As part of a migration team, we can use it to make sure our legacy applications can function in the Vista environment and to also help us find a way to make it work.

Downloads:

ACT 5.0: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=24da89e9-b581-47b0-b45e-492dd6da2971&DisplayLang=en

Application Verifier: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=d2dd7ee0-aaa2-402a-821d-43795d6cf139&displaylang=en

Question:
What are the memory limitations for Ready Boost?

Answer:
Ready boost is a way to increase the speed of your Vista machine. It was designed for systems with 512 MB – 1 GB to help them along. The rest of us can utilize them for performance enhancements as well. We do this by adding a USB key to your computer. When you insert the memory stick into the PC and auto play starts, Click Ready boost. The memory limits are 256MB – 4 GB. Microsoft recommends a 1:1 ratio on flash to system memory on lower end systems and a 2.5:1 ration on flash to system memory on higher end systems. The 4GB limit is due to the FAT32 partition on the flash drive. 4GB is the largest file size it can handle.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Questions and Answers from 5115A and 5116A September Class

Can you disable the Vista Public folder in a GPO?
· No.
· You can do a registry hack. This is not advisable.
· http://www.msfn.org/board/Public-Folder-in-Vista-t92701.html

PIN requirements for Bitlocker.
· The must be between 4 and 20 numerals long.
· It is created when Bitlocker is enabled.
· http://windowshelp.microsoft.com/Windows/en-US/help/d8d3bcb4-6575-4b85-8bc7-2e77b185d6291033.mspx

What ports do Windows Meeting Place use?







ProtocolPort
TCP 801
TCP
3587
UDP
1900
UDP
3540
UDP
3702

http://technet2.microsoft.com/windowsvista/it/library/c509f0d4-f742-4abe-b997-af369eb9a18a1040.mspx?mfr=true

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Why XP clients cannot request web enrollment certificates from Windows 2008

One of the strong points of what Microsoft has been doing over the years has been to maintain compatibility with software for previous versions of its operating systems. This has worked well for a long time. After all, why would you go through the expense of upgrading all your clients to a new OS if it meant buying completely new software packages. The cost would be to prohibitive. As with all old technology, sometimes the old has to give away completely to the new. Case in point, take a look at what the telegraph did to the Pony Express.

The Web Enrollment on Windows Server 2008 has changed. On a Vista machine, it will look as it always has. On XP, it simply will not work. The Server 2003 enrollment control, XEnroll.dll has been replaced by CertEnroll.dll in Server 2008. The enrollment agent has been moved from the server to the client (Vista). Since XP and 2000 relied on the enrollment agent being available on the server, this legacy Oss are not able to request a certificate. So, how do you install a CA on a Server 2008 based system without completely upgrading all your clients to Vista first? It’s a little combination of the old and the new.

First off, you can use a Vista client to request the certificate for the legacy OS. This is all fine and dandy, but a little cumbersome. The other option is to follow a best practice and have a subordinate CA that is running Server 2003 with Web Enrollment installed. This will allow your legacy Oss to continue functioning happily in a secured environment.

12/08/2008
Correction to paragraph 2

I’ve found some contradictory information. XP/2000/2003 can still use web enroll on a Windows @008 AD CS server. AD CS will detect the legacy operating system and use Xenroll.dll to issue the certificates. One thing to note is that Smart Card enrollment is not support on the legacy applications unless you use one of the other methods mentioned.

Refferenc: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc732517.aspx

Friday, February 8, 2008

What do you do to make sure your students are getting the most for their money?

I was on MCPmag the other day. There was a listing in the IT Forums that I could not resist looking it. It was entitled: Newbie in IT. Here is the original post from Adrian.

I've started my computer experience at the firm that I work and immediately realized that IT was for me. My question is, what exams or certification path should I be looking for? There are a number of CompTIA and Microsoft certfication exam but where should I start? Please help

Here is one of the ways that I make sure my students get the most of there future IT training. My response is below.

Adrian, First off, welcome to the club. IT can be a very interesting trip. With the economy the way it is, you are making yourself very portable should the need to move on arise. When I teach Microsoft classes, I make a point to show my students how to make sure they are getting the most out of your training dollar. Only you can judge your current proficiency with different technologies and your interest. When it comes to Microsoft training, this is what I advise people to do.
1) Identify the areas you are interested in.
2) Go to www.microsoft.com.
3) Under Training and Events, Click IT Pro Training and Certification.
4) The Entry level certifications are now called Microsoft Certified Technical Specialist (MCTS). Click that link.
5) The more advanced certifications are not called Microsoft Certified IT professional (MCITP). Look at that link also.
6) Each certification will list the Exams required to achieve it. Click on an exam.
7) Check of the "Skills being Measured" section to see home much new material you will learn.
8) Also, Check the "Preparing Materials" section for the "Classroom Training" Click each one of those classes.
9) In the Course Details section, you will see what is taught in each class. This is the important one. It will tell you what you are spending your money on. Good luck!

I feel that it is an ethically responsible thing to do, as a trainer, to make sure students know how to best spend their training dollars. I've often had professionals in my classes who did not look at the product they purchased and often felt that only a small portion was worth the expense. Although this is initially out of the trainers hands, be directing the to the proper training, we also generate an opportunity to sell future classes.