New video posted

I have just uploaded a new video that details the process of relocating SharePoint databases in SBS 2008 using the inbuilt wizards.

Serenity now! Serenity now!

Frank: Serenity now! Serenity now!
George: What is that?
Frank: Doctor gave me a relaxation cassette. When my blood pressure gets too high, the man on the tape tells me to say, ‘Serenity now!’
George: Are you supposed to yell it?
Frank: The man on the tape wasn’t specific.


(Seinfeld, Season 9, Episode 159, 9 October 1997)


I have decided to finish up with Saturn Alliance on the 30th of September 2008. From that point forward you can contact me via (and via


As such I have also created a new YouTube account where I will continue to post videos. This new location is The videos I have created at will remain, however all new videos will be uploaded to the directorciaops account. If you are an existing subscriber I hope that you’ll subscribe to my new account.


My plans at this stage are simply to take a break and then pursue some opportunities in the areas of Sharepoint and IT productivity consultancy.


I take this opportunity to thank all those people who have supported me and Saturn Alliance during my time there and I aim to maintain a close relationship with Saturn Alliance going forward, however I do need to make a change. I’m looking forward to a new world of challenges which I will continue to post here. You may change other things but blogging must go on!


So as Frank would say – “Hoochie mumma”.

SharePoint search

So I’ve been doing some more work on my Windows SharePoint Services Operations Guide (WSSOPS – plug, plug, plug…) and have come up against something that doesn’t seem right.


Now, according to : – Installing Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 on a Server Running Windows Small Business Server 2003


there is section called Limitations. Under there it says:


“If you moved the Windows SharePoint Services 2.0 databases from WMSDE to the Microsoft SQL Server™ 2000 database software or to Microsoft SQL Server 2005, Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 Search does not function after you install Windows SharePoint Services 3.0.”


Now I’ve been testing the migration from Sharepoint Services 2.0 with the database instances upgraded to SQL 2000 Server across to SBS 2003 (and SBS 2008) and this seems to work without issue (as long as you disable Full-Text Indexing first). So now what happens if I install Sharepoint 3.0 on the original SBS 2003 server that contains Sharepoint 2.0 that has had its databases upgraded to from WMSDE to SQL Server 2000?


I completed the “standard” side-by-side installation as recommended by Microsoft. I then ran a search in Sharepoint v 2.0 (a.k.a Companyweb) and as you see it still works.




So now I do a search in Sharepoint v 3.0 also installed on the same SBS 2003 box and guess what?




That search also works! So, it appears to me that the statement


“Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 Search does not function after you install Windows SharePoint Services 3.0.”


isn’t correct because both search services (Sharepoint 2.0 and 3.0) appear to function on my test SBS 2003 server even after installing Sharepoint 3.0.


In an attempt to understand where this “limitation” has come from I have asked my local resident SBS-MVP (Wayne Small of if he can (or find someone who can) explain what I seem to be missing here. If anyone else out there knows why this “limitation” has been highlighted in the Microsoft documentation I’d appreciate you letting me know as I really can’t see it as being a limitation, but then I am probably missing something obvious (as I have done many times before). I would be disappointed if people read this and decided not to install Sharepoint 3.0 on SBS 2003 because they had upgraded their instances and were afraid Sharepoint search wouldn’t function as I have read a few comments on the web to this extent.


Help me understand – I need to know!

Do you trust your bank?

No? Neither would I, however they are still out there doing stupid things. Such as? This story from the Sydney Morning Herald details how a server the bank sold on Ebay still had confidential client information. Um, like how is that supposed to happen? An “honest error” and an “isolated incident” according to the bank. Yeah, right.


Being involved in recycling technology myself for worthy causes I can’t tell you how much “interesting” data I have found on machines individuals and businesses have donated. Now I make sure that every machine that I recycle has its information thoroughly wiped to military standards before it is resold, so if I can do that why can’t the bank? It is simply a matter of booting to a CD and allowing to run an erase program. Still, it amazes me how little people value their information.


The problem is, think of all the establishments that have information about you stored somewhere on computer. What do they do with their old systems? Do they have a data destruction policy? What about your home PC’s? What happens after they have served their dues? Do you just throw them out? Ah, what about the data? It doesn’t suddenly become unreadable just because the PC is a little slow.


Value your data. If you want to keep it private – encrypt it. When you are finished with it – wipe it for once information escapes your control all it wants to be is free and like a genie, it doesn’t care who its master is! The real worry is those businesses who “look” after your data. What do they do? If you feel uneasy I’d ask them.

ISP DNS vulnerability checker

If you aren’t aware there has recently been an issue with DNS servers that may allow an attacker to redirect you to a malicious web site. If you interested in some more information about the issues see a recent story in the Sydney Morning Herald.


Unfortunately, this issue needs to be resolved at an ISP level, which basically means your ISP has to patch their DNS servers otherwise all their subscribers could be vulnerable. How can you tell whether your ISP has patched their servers?


DoxPara has been setup to do just that. Go to the site and click on the Test my DNS button of the right hand side. This will then return the results of a DNS query, if the ports are random (i.e. :42039, :54311, :34597, etc) then your ISP has patched. However, if the ports are following an obvious pattern (i.e :1001. :1002, :1003, or :30000, :30020, :30100) then you ISP probably hasn’t patched and you need to ask them why.

Right on!

Just been reading the Diva’s blog where she links to the article : Tech Pros: The Next Dinosaurs? Here’s the take away for me:


“Managing tech equipment and maintaining older systems will become decreasingly important. Identifying the best new tools early on and figuring out how to get them into the hands of the people they’ll benefit will be the more important skill.”

If you haven’t got your head “into” cloud computing yet then be prepared to go the way of the dinosaur, because those savvy users are already well down the path to implementing it without you!

Bulk convert documents to Office 2007 format

Now, not everyone is going to need to convert all their Office documents to Office 2007 format but if you are taking the leap and upgrading all your desktops to Office 2007 it is probably an option to consider since there are many benefits with the new format.


Rather than opening each document and saving it in the new format you can download some tools from Microsoft and automate the process. Follow these steps to complete the process.

Applying lessons from the Four Hour Work Week

I’ve been a huge fan of the Four Hour Work Week written by Timothy Ferris. It is one of only a few books that I can say has really changed the way that I view the world. You can read my review but I would urge you to actually take the time and read the book.


Most people that have read the book simply don’t understand how it can be applied to a business (especially their own). With that in mind I have found the following articles about how businesses has applied the principles from the book and the benefits it has provided.


Local business owners swear by time-saving efficiency methods outlined in best-selling book.


Sandia – Being more productive


I’m sure there’s at least one thing in there that you’ll get benefit from. Remember to save time in the future you need to invest some time now, however any thing you invest now will reap much greater rewards in the future than simply letting things continue the way they are now. Work smarter, not harder.


Always being ‘so busy with work’ isn’t a badge of honour, it’s simply being stupid!