Hyper-V Rollup fixes Clock_WatchDog_Timeout and MEMORY_MANAGEMENT stop errors with newer Intel CPUs

865x321_TheServerUnleashed[1] Some more recent Hyper-V processor performance updates released by Intel were not anticipated by Windows Server 2008 R2 and require the following updates. People who were experiencing this problem may have used workarounds to disable ACPI functionality thereby reducing the performance advantages of these newer processors.092085-010[1] I am writing this post to raise awareness that the workarounds can be undone after the update is installed restoring the performance of more recent Intel processors.

The issues described in KB2264080 are resolved by the rollup package which is automatically available through Windows update

More information:

For more information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

975530 (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/975530/ ) Stop error message on an Intel Xeon 5500 series processor-based computer that is running Windows Server 2008 R2 and that has the Hyper-V role installed: "0x00000101 – CLOCK_WATCHDOG_TIMEOUT"

For more information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

974909 (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/974909/ ) The network connection of a running Hyper-V virtual machine is lost under heavy outgoing network traffic on a Windows Server 2008 R2-based computer

For more information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

981791 (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/981791/LN/ ) "STOP: 0x0000001a" error message on a computer that has an Intel Westmere processor together with the Hyper-V role installed on Windows Server 2008 or on Windows Server 2008 R2

For more information about software update terminology, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

824684 (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/824684/ ) Description of the standard terminology that is used to describe Microsoft software updates

The Intel Westmere processor has a microarchitecture that is a 32-nanometer (nm) variant of the Nehalem microarchitecture. The models of the Intel Westmere processor that are affected by this issue include the Xeon Processor 5600 series.
For more information about the Xeon Processor 5600 series, visit the following website:

General information about the Intel Xeon Processor 5600 series (http://www.intel.com/p/en_US/products/server/processor/xeon5000)

The third-party products that this article discusses are manufactured by companies that are independent of Microsoft. Microsoft makes no warranty, implied or otherwise, about the performance or reliability of these products.

Jeff Loucks
Available Technology
Available Technology

307 MPH / 494 KPH Electric Vehicle Speed Record

wheels-Buckeye-Bullet-blogSpan[2]On August 27th electrons which could otherwise have power the worlds longest laptop battery life powered the Buckeye Bullet 2.5 to a 307 MPH EV land speed record. The Buckeye project lead by David Cooke, Ohio State’s team manager may not be certified by FIA who rejected a 2004 record made by the same team. It will be a couple of weeks before FIA may officially sanction the record.

The Team

The team’s 2.5 initiative was sponsored in part by Venturi, a French electric vehicle company, which produced 25 examples of a two-seat, 300,000-euro coupe called the Fetish during the last decade. The record run in the 2.5 was piloted by Roger Schroer, a “professional tester with the Transportation Research Center in Ohio,” said Mr. Cooke.

Buckeye Bullet-Ohio State Team Picture

The Power

A123 Battery Power for tools The team traveled to the salt flats primarily to gauge its new battery unit’s performance, designed by A123 Systems of Watertown, Mass. Founded in 2001, A123Systems’ proprietary Nanophosphate™ technology is built on a new nanoscale materials initially developed at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. A123Systems is now one of the world’s leading suppliers of high-power lithium ion batteries designed to deliver a new combination of power, safety and life.

Venturi FetishThe Sponsor

The Car is sponsored by French EV automaker Venturi who is currently selling 300,000 Euro performance vehicles aptly called the Fetish.  The company also makes utility trucks styled after a common PSA Peugeot Citroën design.

The Crossover

The notebook market has pioneered more research into battery life and energy density than any other field. Electric Vehicles will see greater and greater emphasis on weight to power ratios. With companies like A123 primarily focused on the commercialization of university research in automotive and tools sectors we may soon see notebook life influenced by the quest to be the fastest EV vehicle over the Bonneville salt flats. As these two industries accelerate to new records consumers will benefit from better and better forms of mobile power.

Jeff Loucks
Available Technology
Available Technology

Exchange Server 2010 SP1 VHD Demo Download

Ex2010Microsoft has published the Exchange 2010 SP1 Virtual Server for Download on a 60 trial activation. This gives administrators the ability to test drive the functionality before implementing the changes in a production environment.

See the Download page here: Exchange 2010 SP1 VHD

Program Details

The evaluation period for this virtual machine image ends 180 days after the image has been activated. After the 180 days, the evaluation period is over and the image should be discarded. 

For complete use-rights, please refer to the EULA contained within this evaluation package.

· Do not redistribute this image.

· Do not put this image into a production environment.

· It is recommended not to join this image to a corporate network.

· If you choose to join this image to an external network, you should immediately download updates and security patches for the operating system and all applications.

Prerequisites

In order to use this evaluation package you will need to have Microsoft Hyper-V installed on a physical machine.

Hyper-V is available on Windows Server 2008 or Windows Server 2008 R2, and the details on how to install Hyper-V can be found here.

Getting Started in Hyper-V

Overview

The evaluation package referenced in this document includes a number of pre-configured virtual machine that you will use to run your evaluation

File name

SLC-DC01.vhd

The above table includes the file necessary to deploy this evaluation image.  The file was extracted into the same folder as this document when you ran the installer.

In order to use this evaluation you need to add this package as a new virtual machine to your Hyper-V installation. To do this, perform the following steps from the administration console of your Virtual Server:

· Add the virtual machine to Hyper-V Manager

· Launch the virtual machine

· Configuring virtual networks

· Activate Windows Server 2008 R2

Import the virtual machine to your Hyper-V Manager

1. Open Hyper-V Manager. Click Start, point to Administrative Tools, and then click Hyper-V Manager.

2. If you are not already connected to the server that owns the shared storage, connect to that server.

3. From the Action pane, click Import Virtual Machine.

4. Click Browse and select the folder SLC-DC01 in the Import Virtual Machine popup screen.

5. Click Import and then click close.

Launch the Virtual Machine

1. Once you go through the steps in Add the virtual machine to your Hyper-V manager, the virtual machine you added will be listed under the Virtual Machines pane.

2. Right-Click on the virtual machine and click Start.

Configuring virtual networks

  1. Open Hyper-V Manager.
  2. From the Actions menu, click Virtual Network Manager.
  3. Under Create virtual network, select the type of network you want to create. The types of network are External, Internal, and Private. Note: You’ll need to select "External" to perform the activation step next.
  4. Click Add. The New Virtual Network page appears.

Type a name for the new network. Review the other properties and modify them if necessary.

Activate Windows Server 2008 R2 (for 180 day eval)

  1. If SLC-DC01 is not started at this time, right click SLC-DC01, In the Hyper-V Manager, and choose Start.
  2. Once it is started, double-click SLC-DC01 to open the window. At the logon prompt, logon using the Username and Password below. Note: There will be a pause while the VM installs the new hardware and assigns a DHCP address from your network.
  3. Click Start, right-click Computer, and then click Properties.
  4. In the System Properties window, click Activate, in the Windows Activation section. Choose the option to Activate over the internet, when prompted.
  5. Once activated, click Start and then Shutdown.
  6. Once the VM is shutdown, you can perform two optional steps:
    1. Change your network adapter type from External to Internal or Private, by bringing up the properties of the network adapter in the Virtual Network Manager under the Actions menu.
    2. Take a snapshot of your virtual machine by right-clicking SLC-DC01 in the Hyper-V Management console and choosing Snapshot.

Username and Password

Use the following information to log on to Microsoft Windows contained within the virtual machine

· Username:        contoso\Administrator

· Password:          pass@word1

Evaluation package contents

Operating System

This image contains Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise Edition installed using a default configuration. No optional components are included.

Jeff Loucks
Available Technology
Available Technology

CRM 4.0 – Exporting to Excel over 10000 rows

en-US113_Office_Excel_2010_065-06962[1]The power of exporting to Excel is one of CRM’s greatest functionalities. Often people bump their head against and internal limit of 10,000 rows set by the dev team to ensure you don’t receive a timeout error as SQL churns through the export process.

How to solve the problem

To change this in CRM 4.0:

1. Log-in to the SQL Server where the <Organization_Name>_MSCRM database is stored.
2. Open the OrganizationBase table.
3. Find the Column:  MaxRecordsForExportToExcel.
4. Change the value from 10,000 to the desired value.
5. Commit the change to the database.

Additional Notes

IISReset

In order for CRM to respond to the changes you will need to perform an IISReset to restart the CRM website. You may only need to reset the Application Pool for your CRM instance if you are hosting multiple websites. You can also run the following script from the command line to reset the AppPool –

cscript iisapp.vbs /a CrmAppPool /r

SQL Timeout

You may receive an SQL error indicating SQL has timed out processing your request.

The SQL timeout is controlled by a registry value on each CRM server:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\MSCRM\OLEDBTimeout

This value does not exist by default. If it does not exist then the default value will be 30 seconds. To change it add the registry value (of type DWORD) and set the value you want measured in seconds. If you set the value to 0 (Zero) SQL Server will not timeout. This is not recommended. Remember to use IISreset or iisapp.vbs to reset the CRM application pool in order for the changes to take effect.

Conclusion

This is a summary of a number of other posts and follow on questions. It was my hope to create a comprehensive overview of some of the issues which might occur when trying to export more than 10,000 records from CRM to Excel.

 

Jeff Loucks
Available Technology
Available Technology

Are analysts experts – Analyst Report Positions Telcos as strong players in the cloud Market

Would you buy Hosted Exchange from your Telco? That is the question that analysts predict you will be answering in the affirmative giving everyone else in the industry a ‘run for their money’. See the article here: http://about.datamonitor.com/media/archives/4674

While Analyst are described as experts their lack of knowledge as to what goes in to selling complex cloud hosted applications leaves obvious omissions from their reports. TelcoCloud

Fundamentally, Telcos offer services which require no expertise to consume, configure or deploy. Telcos are not well positioned to use a solution selling methodology that can take hours and require in-depth analysis to select and choose. They are generally staffed with people who have never run a business let alone be in a position to answer questions on business value of one solution versus another.

For those who believe that Telco’s have satisfied customers with simple offerings such as telephone services there is almost no way one could reasonably conclude that they will be able to leverage the same systems to deliver complex services and sales processes.

Telcos will have to make wholesale changes to the way they do business in order to be successful in the cloud market. With Analysts positioning this as a natural fit only time will tell if Telcos will be able to figure out a way to make the sales and services side of the business work for end users.

I wish them luck but more so I wish their customers luck in sifting through the fog of a 4 hour customer service call while they are in a business down situation. Telcos simply will be figuring it out as they go.

Jeff Loucks
Available Technology
Available Technology

Dynamic Memory for Hyper-V How To – Sp1 for Windows 7 and 2008 R2

Service Pack 1 for Windows 7 and Windows 2008 R2 released to the public and they are in the wild. Perhaps the most interesting and sought after aspect is Dynamic Memory for Hyper-V.

This post sheds some limelight on a whitepaper and extracts some key aspects. The document can be found here:

http://download.microsoft.com/download/E/0/5/E05DF049-8220-4AEE-818B-786ADD9B434E/Implementing_and_Configuring_Dynamic_Memory.docx

Download Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 Service Pack 1 (SP1) Beta

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-gb/evalcenter/ff183870.aspx

Executive Summary

Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 BetaDynamic Memory is a new feature of Hyper-V™ introduced in Service Pack 1 for Windows Server® 2008 R2 that enables Hyper-V hosts to dynamically adjust the amount of memory available to virtual machines in response to changing workloads. The benefits of Dynamic Memory include higher virtual machine consolidation ratios and increased flexibility for managing virtualized workloads. This blog draws heavily from the released whitepapers and my own experience. summarizes how Dynamic Memory works,  requirements for implementing Dynamic Memory, how to enable and configure Dynamic Memory, and some considerations and best practices for implementing Dynamic Memory.

Understanding Dynamic Memory

Hyper-V in Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 R2 employed a static memory model where the administrator of a Hyper-V host would assign the amount of physical memory for each virtual machine on the host. Then when a virtual machine is started on the host, the assigned memory is allocated to the virtual machine and never changes unless the virtual machine is shut down and a different amount of memory is assigned to it. Nyper-v Dynamic Memory SantaFor Microsoft customers who want to achieve higher virtual machine consolidation ratios for server consolidation or VDI scenarios, the static memory model of Hyper-V on these earlier platforms becomes a limiting factor. To meet the needs of such customers, Microsoft is introducing a new feature called Dynamic Memory in Service Pack 1 for Windows Server 2008 R2.

How Dynamic Memory Works

At a high level, Dynamic Memory works by pooling together all physical memory on the host, minus a certain amount of memory that’s reserved for exclusive use by the parent partition. Memory from this pool is then securely distributed among virtual machines running on the host, while the amount of memory allocated to a particular virtual machine dynamically adjusts in real time based on the needs of the virtual machine.

Understanding Memory Pressure and Memory Buffer

Dynamic Memory determines the amount of memory needed by a virtual machine by calculating something called memory pressure. To perform this calculation, Hyper-V looks at the total committed memory of the guest operating system running in the virtual machine and then calculates pressure as the ratio of how much memory the virtual machine wants to how much it has. The amount of memory that Hyper-V then assigns to the virtual machine equals total committed memory plus some additional memory to be used as a buffer. This additional amount of memory is configurable on a per-virtual machine basis as a percentage amount. For example, configuring a buffer value of 50% means that an additional memory of up to 50% of committed memory can be allocated to the virtual machine. The guest operating system of the virtual machine typically uses this additional memory for its system file cache to boost the performance of the operating system and applications.

Dynamic Memory Requirements

Dynamic Memory has requirements on both the host side and the guest operating system side. The following sections summarize these requirements for the beta release of Service Pack 1.

Host Requirements for Dynamic Memory

In order to be able to use the Dynamic Memory feature on a Hyper-V host, Service Pack 1 must be applied to one of the following virtualization platforms:

· Windows Server 2008 R2 with the Hyper-V server role installed

· Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2

Guest Requirements for Dynamic Memory

The following Windows server operating systems support Dynamic Memory when installed as the guest operating system on a virtual machine:

· Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard Edition SP1*

· Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise Edition SP1

· Windows Server 2008 R2 Datacenter Edition SP1

· Windows Server 2008 R2 Web Edition SP1*

· Windows Server 2008 Standard Edition SP2*

· Windows Server 2008 Enterprise Edition SP2

· Windows Server 2008 Datacenter Edition SP2

· Windows Server 2008 Web Edition SP2*

· Windows Server 2003 R2 Standard Edition SP2 or higher*

· Windows Server 2003 R2 Enterprise Edition SP2 or higher

· Windows Server 2003 R2 Datacenter Edition SP2 or higher

· Windows Server 2003 R2 Web Edition SP2 or higher*

· Windows Server 2003 Standard Edition SP2 or higher*

· Windows Server 2003 Enterprise Edition SP2 or higher

· Windows Server 2003 Datacenter Edition SP2 or higher

· Windows Server 2003 Web Edition SP2 or higher*

Note: The Beta release of Service Pack 1 does not support Dynamic Memory for the operating systems marked with an asterisk (*) above. However, support for Dynamic Memory for these operating systems will be added in a future release of SP1.

Note: Dynamic Memory is supported for both the x86 and x64 architectures of Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2 and Windows Server 2008.

The following Windows client operating systems for both x86 and x64 architecture also support Dynamic Memory when installed as the guest operating system on a virtual machine:

· Windows® 7 Enterprise Edition

· Windows 7 Ultimate Edition

· Windows Vista® Enterprise Edition SP2

· Windows Vista Ultimate Edition SP2

High Level Steps for Enabling and Configuring Dynamic Memory

Enabling and configuring Dynamic Memory on a virtual machine involves the following steps:

· Upgrading Integration Components

· Enabling Dynamic Memory

· Configuring Startup RAM

· Configuring Maximum RAM

· Configuring Memory Buffer

· Configuring Memory Priority

The sections that follow provide more information concerning each of these steps.

Enabling Dynamic Memory

To enable Dynamic Memory on a virtual machine, you must first shut down the virtual machine. Note that shutting down a virtual machine may result in service interruption for applications or users who access the virtual machine. Once the virtual machine is turned off, you can enable and configure Dynamic Memory by opening the Settings for the virtual machine and selecting Memory under Hardware as shown in Figure 1:

Settings for Dynamic Memory Tool

Figure 1: Enabling and configuring Dynamic Memory on a virtual machine. 

To enable Dynamic Memory on the virtual machine, change the Memory Management setting from Static to Enabled. If desired you can later disable Dynamic Memory on the machine by changing the setting back to Static to specify that a fixed amount of memory be used by the machine. Note that you can have a mix of different virtual machines on the same Hyper-V R2 SP1 with some virtual machines having Dynamic Memory enabled on them and other virtual machines having fixed amounts of memory assigned to them.

Once you have enabled Dynamic Memory on a virtual machine, you need to configure the Startup RAM, Maximum RAM, Memory Buffer and Memory Priority for the virtual machine. These settings are discussed next in the sections below. To configure Startup RAM or Maximum RAM, you must first shut down the virtual machine which may result in service interruption for applications or users who access the virtual machine. Memory Buffer and Memory Priority however can be configured even when the virtual machine is running.

Three Scenarios possible Scenarios to use Dynamic Memory

Desktop Virtualization – 1

In many scenarios Desktops under utilize memory. Therefore not having Dynamic Memory was a real limitation because you had to fully allocate memory to systems which might not have been utilized.

Server Consolidation – 2

Legacy servers may only require their full memory load sporadically. It might be that when the workload is required you need a substantial amount of memory. In this type of scenario you can keep the server running and ready while maintaining the density of your server farm.

Dynamic Data Centers – 3

As System Center Virtual Machine Manager shifts your work loads around the server farm its ability to computer the best servers to run your work load will profit from Dynamic Memory. This will allow greater density, better overall ROI and lower over all utility costs. This will be done by using staging servers in densely over committed server environment and using live Migration to move servers to ‘Free Run’ hosts which have only server workloads which require greater memory flexibility.

gotchafulllogo[1] Gotchas and notes from the field.

Planning for Failure – 1

When planning for Dynamic Memory implementations never forget about what happens when you loose a host server. The greater density does not reduce the requirement to have additional servers available even at maximum load which will be available to maintain High Availability requirements.

Design for Memory – 2

Memory is the key design constraint. The best designs understand this and work to detach the requirement for storage from the requirement for memory.

Generally keep on your toes – 3

As you read back through my blog about Hyper-V and R2 you will find that I have stumbled on gotchas in evaluating betas in this area. Remember to do your traditional back ups and don’t forget to back up your configurations of SCVMM and the rest of the environment.

 

VMM Support for Dynamic Memory  

logo-VMM_for_R2_3[1]Dynamic Memory support is coming in VMM. With the first release of SP1 to the wild it was easy to spot the need for Dynamic Memory as a management feature requirement in System Center Virtual Machine Manager. A natural question and Michael Michael from Microsoft make this statement “a future update to VMM will support Dynamic Memory.”

Other Recommendations

Try not to configure too high a value for the Startup RAM setting on a virtual machine. The reason is because Dynamic Memory as implemented in Hyper-V R2 SP1 can never decrease the memory allocated to the virtual machine below the value of the Startup RAM setting. The Dynamic Memory algorithm will always strive to make this minimum amount of memory available to the virtual machine.

Conclusion

Dynamic memory is a must have feature for increasing density. Used cautiously and wisely it will greatly increase your data center density while giving you greater flexibility.

I have tried to capture the highlights of the documentation regarding Dynamics Memory in Windows 2008 R2 SP1 which has reached the Public Bata stage. I have also provided links to the documents which are the source of this information. Finally you will find some design guidance and gotchas from the field.

Jeff Loucks
Available Technology
Available Technology

Aurora Sheds Light on Public Skies

In case you missed it, a new server solution for the SMB space has cracked open the door of its private enclave. The Aurora is lighting up where there was nothingaurora-borealis-photo_7289[1] but NDA darkness before.  The party within is attracting people who want to see what is going on inside. Let this mystical product that has been lingering in subtext of MVP non-disclosure talk simplify some of the basic needs of every day business users.

I call is a stepping stone product that helps businesses manage their data locally while leveraging the  Cloud to promote redundancy and agility.

Here is the private announcement that connect users see about what has gone public.

If you haven’t already signed up for the preview, you can visit the connect site and get signed up.

Public Preview

Aurora Sample Screen

 

Windows Small Business Server code name "Aurora" Public Preview is now available!

Please read the Release Notes before you install the preview.  Also, note that this build is for evaluation purposes only.  You should not install this in a production environment. Microsoft does not support installing in these environments.

The following is available for the "Aurora" Public preview:

Product keys for the Aurora Preview are available here

Submitting Feedback

To submit feedback on either Aurora or any of our previously release products, please click feedback on the left pane and choose the appropriate bug form.

Make sure to include the following in your feedback:

  • Repro steps for the issue you are experiencing, including:

    • A through description of the issue

    • The hardware configuration of your server and/or client PCs

  • The result you expected and what you actually experienced

  • A screenshot of the issue – for any user interface or display issues

  • For Aurora bugs, use the Log Collector Tool to provide the logs needed to investigate the bug

Additional Resources

The following resources are available for more information on Windows Small Business Server:

 

Jeff Loucks
Available Technology
Available Technology

Dynamics CRM Rollups – Listen to what goes into them

Listen to Derek talk about sustained engineering and the process of developing an update roll up. Here he specifically speaks about update roll up 12.

Listen to internet radio with pfeDynamics on Blog Talk Radio

 

Update Rollup 12 for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 (KB 2028381)

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=a80147f8-130e-492d-93d3-e16e6b2e2fa1&displaylang=en

Jeff Loucks
Available Technology
Available Technology

Microsoft COO Kevin Turner’s Four Point Plan for Partners

At WPC in July, Chief Operating Officer Kevin Turner discusses partner opportunities and Microsoft’s growth strategy.


In his words,


  1. Lead with the Cloud!
  2. Drive Windows 7 and Office 2010 Refresh!
  3. Grow share by competing to Win!
  4. Drive Customer Satisfaction!


“When we have great relationships with our customers and our partners, we see revenue streams. It’s why we matter!”


Jeff Loucks
Available Technology
Available Technology