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Ed Bott's Microsoft Challenge--10/12/00

By ebott ·
While prowling the Technical Q&A boards at TechRepublic this week, I found a dandy of a question that deserves a wider audience. A TechRepublic member wants to assemble daily, weekly, and monthly lists of general responsibilities for the administrator of a small- to medium-sized network (up to 500 users). Some tasks are obvious--tape backup and a quick scan of Event Viewer logs, for instance--but what else should be on a daily/weekly/monthly to-do list? Have you put together task lists for the IT professionals in your organization? Share your secrets with fellow TechRepublic members and earn 2000 TechPoints.

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Ed Bott's Microsoft Challenge--10/12/00

by DRDON In reply to Ed Bott's Microsoft Chall ...

Daily: Verify Last Night Backup status
properly secure the tape.
Daily: File/Disk space avaialable - don't let users run out of space.
Daily: Setup Nightly backup jobs

Weekly: System clean up (empty trash) delete TEMP files.

prepare weekly backup - full backup

MONTHLY: Full backup plus a copy for off site storage.
Monthly: Purge temp files and defrag system.
MONTHLY: Create a test vol and do a restore of the data vol from the off site copy of full backup.

This isin addtion to as needed stuff for new users, deleteing departed users, and changing rights or installing new or more software.

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Ed Bott's Microsoft Challenge--10/12/00

by ebott In reply to Ed Bott's Microsoft Chall ...

The question was auto-closed by TechRepublic

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Ed Bott's Microsoft Challenge--10/12/00

by JuanDeMarco In reply to Ed Bott's Microsoft Chall ...

I am a contractor for many small to mid sized businesses and I have found many problems that they call me for have easy precautionary measures that could have been taken to keep things smooth. Here is the list of things I will recommend to them.
1.) BACKUP! I can't emphasize that enof. Many people have lost thousands and in 2 cases, millions of dollars because they didn't do this. The thought they were, so the #2 thing is:
2.) CHECK THE BACKUP! Make sure it is running and all appropriate files are backed up! This needs to be done on a dally basses
3.) Check for updates from the software companies. I recommend this on a monthly basis.
4.) Check for BIOS revs. I do this on a semi-annual basis.
5.) Check the services. Make sure that they are running smoothly. Ask around, see if any programs are lagging. I do this on a bi-monthly basis.
6.) Check the Performance Monitor. I monitor the following items: CPU, Memory, Network Utilization, HDD access. Check these things on a weekly basses. If you find that one of these starts to have problems or has a sudden high utilization of something, this is a warning that something?s not right. Use the logging function and log settings at 10-15 min intervals or even 5 ifyou have a good server that can hold the info. Check this on a weekly basses. Save the log in some sort of storage. Set the log to only log during business hours to save space. If you have a separate NT/2k system that you can use, use this so asnot to tax the server.

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Ed Bott's Microsoft Challenge--10/12/00

by JuanDeMarco In reply to Ed Bott's Microsoft Chall ...

7.) Delete or deactivate old users as they leave. Move there files or delete them from the server so as not to have clutter.
8.) Defrag the server. Win 2k has a built in defragmenter, use it. NT needs extra software. Disk-keeper is a good software. This will keep your system working smooth and fast. This will also save your HDD. Do this on a nightly basis after your backup.
9.) Run Scandisk on a monthly basis. Make sure you know that you HDD's wont fail. In a mission crit. server,run it weekly if not dally.
10.) Check the HUBs, switches and routers for collisions or other network anomalies. Find out quickly that your network is having problems before they bring you to your knees. Do this monthly if not weekly.
11.) Make sure that the Client Computers are defragged and the HDD's checked on a weekly or monthly basis.
12.) CHECK THE BACKUP! Make sure that it is running. Again. Verify the tapes every backup.

Some of these things are hard to do if you have a wide variety of software or computers. Try to stick with one or two brands if you can. This will simplify many of your tasks. Software and BIOS updates can oftentimes be pushed to the clients by the logon scripts. Not every one can do all of the above mentioned steps, but any of them can help diagnose problems before they start.
-Juan

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Ed Bott's Microsoft Challenge--10/12/00

by ebott In reply to Ed Bott's Microsoft Chall ...

The question was auto-closed by TechRepublic

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Ed Bott's Microsoft Challenge--10/12/00

by sundance_tx In reply to Ed Bott's Microsoft Chall ...

Check event log of every server, fix/try to fix as needed. Creating new directories, shares, and security groups, new accounts,
disabling/deleting old accounts, managing account policies. Make sure backup runs and verify the files. Plugging Security holes.
Exchange Management including DL's, users, etc. Train the training people, helpdesk people, and end users. Answer all important emails from CFO/CEO/IT-MIS Director.
Glance over DSU/TSU, switches, hubs, make sure everything is green. Check router logs.
Check firewall logs. Various calls to MS Support for things that really aren't your fault. Check for free space on all servers, for file pollution and quotas. Ensure that all server services are running. Ensure that antivirus definitions are up-to-date.
Run defrag and chkdsk on all drives. Monitor WINS replication. Monitor directory replication. Maintain performance baseline data. Monitor network traffic with sniffer or NETMON to keep performance up. Keep Service Packand Hotfixes current as per company policy. Monitor Web traffic for indications of attacks. Install software for users. Monitor user email for corporate policy violations. Check Print Queues. Keep a log of everything you have fixed or performedmaintenance on. Make sure all apps are shared. Permissions and filesystem management. Check for bad system and ini files on database server (Btrieve). Make sure load on database server is acceptable and ghosted users
are cleared as well as multiple logons.
Nightly:
Backups
(Next Applies to Terminal Server admins only)
Reboot each Citrix server.
Delete all autocreated printers stuck.
Clear out rogue local profiles. Backups
Weekly:
Clean Servers, check for .tmp files, jetdb files, etc. Implement any new policy, permission, logon script, or scheduled
script modifications. Research, Research, Research. Change any active monitoring & alerting (third party tool

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Ed Bott's Microsoft Challenge--10/12/00

by ebott In reply to Ed Bott's Microsoft Chall ...

The question was auto-closed by TechRepublic

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Ed Bott's Microsoft Challenge--10/12/00

by winwalker In reply to Ed Bott's Microsoft Chall ...

I don't remember where I got these... it may have been TechRepublic!
Daily:
1.Check event log of every server, fix/try to fix as needed.
2.Creating new directories, shares, and security groups, new accounts, disabling/deleting old accounts, managing account policies.
3.Make sure backup runs and verify the files.
4.Plugging Security holes.
5.Exchange Management including DL's, users, etc.
6.Train the training people, helpdesk people, and end users.
7.Answer all-important emails from CFO/CEO/IT-MIS Director.
8.Glance over DSU/TSU, switches, hubs, make sure everything is green.
9.Check router logs.
10.Check firewall logs.
11.Various calls to MS Support for things that really aren't your fault.
12.Check for free space on all servers, for file pollution and quotas.
13.Ensure that all server services are running.
14.Ensure that antivirus definitions are up-to-date.
15.Run defrag and chkdsk on all drives as long as you can do it without a reboot.
16.Monitor WINS replication.
17.Monitor directory replication.
18.Maintain performance baseline data.
19.Monitor network traffic with sniffer or NETMON to keep performance up.
20.Keep Service Pack and Hotfixes current as per company policy.
21.Monitor Web traffic for indications of attacks.
22.Install software for users
23.Monitor user email for corporate policy violations.
24.Check Print Queues.
25.Keep a log of everything you have fixed or performed maintenance on.
26.Make sure all apps are shared.
27.Permissions and file system management.
28.Make sure load on terminal server is acceptable and ghosted users are cleared as well as multiple logons.
Nightly:
1.Backups
2.Reboot each Citrix server.
3.Delete all auto created printers stuck.
4.Clear out rogue local profiles.

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Ed Bott's Microsoft Challenge--10/12/00

by ebott In reply to Ed Bott's Microsoft Chall ...

The question was auto-closed by TechRepublic

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Ed Bott's Microsoft Challenge--10/12/00

by winwalker In reply to Ed Bott's Microsoft Chall ...

Weekly:
1.Clean Servers, check for .tmp files, jetdb files, etc.
2.Implement any new policy, permission, logon script, or scheduled script modifications.
3.Research and Study
4.Change any active monitoring & alerting (third party tools) as needed.
5.Check PerfMon, NetMon, (or 3rd party tools) for OK baselines.
6.Evaluate software for System Admin purposes.
7.Performance Monitoring/Capacity Planning- Budgeting for future.
8.Uptime/Downtime reports.
9.Auditing network for unauthorized changes, inside and outside.
10.Plan for W2K migration.
Monthly:
1.Rebuild Databases as needed.
2.Gather statistics on Webservers.
3.Clean exchange mailboxes.
4.Audit Service Account and Admin Passwords.
5.Convincing your boss's boss's boss that most of this stuff _needs_ to be done.
6.Extended testing backups with restores.
8.Set System and Application priorities
9.Managing off-site storage of backup tapes
10.IT System vulnerability analysis
11.Periodically reviewing all of the above, is documentation up to date? Has the Disaster Recovery Plan been updated to reflect changes in the environment?
12.Periodically reviewing workload. Are some things no longer done?
13.Periodically review company technical environment. How can it be improved?
14.Reboot every NT server whether you think you should or not.
Initial or Occasionally.
1.Disaster Recovery to alternate site, in case of emergency.
2.Configure and maintain DNS - Internal and External, DHCP, WINS, TCP/IP, etc.
3.Document the full network.
4.Rebuild corrupt servers.
5.Test the Restore Procedure.
6.Reconfigure domain structure, again.
7.Get a performance baseline for things like %Processor Time, Pagefiling, Disk Queues.
8.Initial checklist should include status of administrative and service passwords, status of the backups, check out DHCP scope(s),
9.WINS, DNS, remove unnecessary protocols.

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