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Todd Klindt's home page > Todd Klindt's SharePoint Admin Blog
What's going on with TK.
July 27
Podcast 254 - Seems Almost Offensive

Shane takes the helm this week while I'm travelling for business. He covers some recent data breaches and what they mean to you. He covers some Windows 10, and also explains how the cloud is different for us Microsoft types. It has to do with pets or something. Finally he talks about a great book, "The Hard Thing about Hard Things" and what he learned in it.

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Podcast 254 - Seems Almost Offensive (Time 0_02_23;28)

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Running Time: 29:01

Links:

03:40 - Ashley Madison data breach
04:40 - Tinder to help you if you aren't a bad person
06:15 - Windows 10 Cortana has international flare
09:00 - Amazon's own Black Friday ends with a black eye
12:00 - Windows 10 on USB sticks
13:40 - Cloud at your pace WhitePaper
23:30 - "The hard thing about hard things: Building a business when there are no easy answers" Ben Horowitz

Brought to you by Rackspace

ShortURL: http://www.toddklindt.com/Podcast254

July 19
Podcast 253 - Long Time Listener First Time Caller

In tonight's podcast I talk a lot about Windows 10. How to install it, where to install it, ways it won't let me install it, the whole gamut. Then I show you all a way to up your PowerShell game in Office 365. I end the show by bringing on a friend of mine, Gerry LaCanu, and we talk about some new Rackspace products that help you get the most out of Office 365 and Azure.
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Podcast 253 - Long Time Listener First Time Caller (Time 0_10_11;29)

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Transcription by CMSWire

Running Time: 47:56

Links:

4:46 - My author page at CMSWire
10:30 - Create Windows 10 USB boot media
19:00 - Upgrade a Small Tablet or Laptop to Windows 10
22:30 - Microsoft Temporarily Suspends Windows Insider Builds
25:30 - Office PowerShell site
26:30 - Rackspace Support for Office 365 is Now Available 24/7 in the US!
29:00 - Rackspace Fanatical Support for Azure!

Brought to you by Rackspace

ShortURL: http://www.toddklindt.com/Podcast253

July 09
Podcast 252 - I Don't Actually Work for a Living

In this episode I bring in my friend, and all around good guy, Kirk Evans from Microsoft. We discuss Azure, the cloud, Hybrid, and all kinds of fun stuff. Kirk lends a real air of legitimacy to the show, I think. I round things out by talking about what's new with Windows 10, Windows Phone, and a crazy little thing called Groove.

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Podcast 252 - I Don't Actually Work for a Living (Time 0_06_07;25)

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Transcription by CMSWire

Running Time: 1:00:39

Links:

03:36 - Kirk Evans from Microsoft
09:03 - What is Azure AD?
15:00 - SharePoint on Azure
19:30 - Azure AD Connect
35:30 - Are there any features that Office 365 users will see value in Azure AD?
40:23 - http://Myapps.microsoft.com
41:40 - Azure AD Application Proxy
44:06 - Multi-factor authentication with Azure AD premium adds per-app MFA
46:10 - Is this all ITPro, or is there stuff for developers?
47:30 - Azure AD Graph API
51:27 - Microsoft reportedly finalizing Windows 10 RTM later this week
53:13 - Windows 10 PC build 10162 heads to Slow ring preview users today
56:00 - Xbox Music is now Groove
57:18-  Picture from Rod Trent
58:40 - Mississippi PowerShell User Group
59:12 - SPTechCon
59:47 - SharePointalooza

Brought to you by Rackspace

ShortURL: http://www.toddklindt.com/Podcast252

July 02
Podcast 251 - I Whine, Stuff Happens

I talk about some big releases in tonight's podcast. Windows 10 Phone released an upgrade, and I actually say good things about it. It adds the feature that I demanded and changes some of the UI dealing with networking that are phenomenal. Then I talk about how Azure AD Connect is out and how great it is. Not to be outdone, Windows 10 released an update this week too. I talk a bit about that and how it hooks into Office 365. I end the show talking about a couple of new gadgets that I've added to my stable.

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Podcast 251 - I Whine, Stuff Happens (Time 0_20_54;06)

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Transcription by CMSWire

Running Time: 43:58

Links:

03:03 - Kirk Evans
06:15 - Outlook Mail on Windows 10 Mobile now supports inbox pinning to Start Screen
11:15 - Wi-fi button changes in Windows Phone 10
15:00 - Azure AD Connect is generally available
23:00 - Windows 10 build 10158 is out
27:30 - An early look at Cortana integration with Office 365
28:00 - First Release for Office 365
29:30 - Amazon Echo
32:00 - New HDMI stick computer
36:45 - Windows RT will get an update, not Windows 10
40:09 - Mississippi PowerShell User Group
40:41 - SPTechCon
42:43 - SharePointalooza

Brought to you by Rackspace

ShortURL: http://www.toddklindt.com/Podcast251

July 01
MVP Award renewed

July 1st is always a scary day for me. Have I secured enough fireworks for the 4th of July, but not so much that I lose any fingers. It’s such a delicate balance to strike.

Oh, and it’s my Microsoft MVP renewal date.

After much anxious waiting I got the email this morning that my MVP status had been renewed for another year. I was very relieved. Thank you to Microsoft for that. This marks my 10th year as an MVP and to say it has been life changing is not hyperbole. It has opened doors for me, and exposed me to some incredible and amazing people. I’m grateful for the entire experience. Thanks to everyone.

tk

ShortURL: http://www.toddklindt.com/MVP10

June 19
Podcast 250 - System Tweaky Things

Tonight's Podcast is a busy one. I chat about a new SharePoint patch and another way you can keep yourself up to date on all the SharePoint patching fun. Then I talk about the Metro Skype client, the release of Azure Active Directory Connect, and a fun PowerShell trick I stumbled onto. I wrap up talking about password management, a fun topic for everyone involved.

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Podcast 250 - System Tweaky Things (Time 0_31_40;02)

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Transcription by CMSWire

Running Time: 38:08

Links:

02:22 - The TCT at Rackspace
11:24 - Kirk Evans
13:31 - MyProjectExpert
16:16 - Monitor Changes to SharePoint 2013 June 2015 CU page
18:41 - Metro Skype is going away
26:40 - Azure AD Connect to Hit GA This Month
32:03 - Jason Himmelstein Github Repository
39:30 - Lastpass was hacked
43:45 - Devolutions
43:54 - Get Password Vault Manager
45:05 - Get Remote Desktop Manager
47:53 - Iowa SharePoint User Group
48:20 - Mississippi PowerShell User Group
49:06 - SPTechCon
49:55 - SharePointalooza

Brought to you by Rackspace

ShortURL: http://www.toddklindt.com/Podcast250

June 11
Podcast 249 - Nothing Short of Science Fiction

In this week's Podcast I cover more potentially bad news for Windows Phone, but I follow it up with some good news about Skype. Then I talk about a cool new Windows device that I just must have. We chat a little about what Windows 10 on ARM might look like and I finish up by showing you a way to authenticate against SharePoint.

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Podcast 249 - Nothing Short of Science Fiction (Time 0_03_14;12)

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Transcription by CMSWire

Running Time: 38:08

Links:

14:49 - Facebook Connect features shut down for Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone apps
17:28 - Skype Translator tech is coming to Skype for Windows desktop later this year
21:55 - Quanta's Compute Plug is a Windows 10 PC in a wall wart
26:39 Windows 10 Mobile shown running on 10-inch ARM tablet
35:00 Iowa SharePoint User Group
35:12 Mississippi PowerShell User Group
35:49 SPTechCon
36:38 SharePointalooza

Brought to you by Rackspace

ShortURL: http://www.toddklindt.com/Podcast249

June 08
Podcast 248 - Wash Bill Gates Cars

Because of my dedication to my craft, I recorded tonight's podcast from a hotel room in Texas. I started out by addressing some hate mail I received from Windows Phone lovers. After I address that, and wipe my tears, I go on to talking about how great Windows 10 is (please don't send me more hate mail) and I finish up with some SharePoint content. (please don't send me more hate mail)
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Podcast 248 - Wash Bill Gates Cars (Time 0_23_48;05)

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Transcription by CMSWire

Running Time: 34:54

Links:

05:10 - CMSWire Transcript of Podcast 247, "Is it time to lose your Windows Phone?"
14:30 - Here Are the Features Windows 10 Will Remove When You Upgrade
16:30 - My CMSWire Author page
18:57 - Windows 10 Release date is July 29th
19:40 - Windows 10 System Requirements
19:58 - Windows 10 Upgrade Matrix: Which Version You Get For Free
20:35 - A Few More Answers About Windows 10 Upgrades
22:29 - Creating a Wildcard DNS Record for Fun and Profit
24:48 - How to Rename SharePoint 2013 Site Collections Without Prayer or Sobbing

Brought to you by Rackspace

ShortURL: http://www.toddklindt.com/Podcast248

May 31
How to Rename SharePoint 2013 Site Collections Without Prayer or Sobbing

A couple of years ago I published a blog post, “Using Copy-SPSite to rename Site Collections in SharePoint 2013” to much fanfare and adulation. Okay, okay, adulation might be a bit strong (might) but it was a good find nonetheless. I thought I had reached the pinnacle of renaming Site Collections. I thought that my career was all downhill from here. I was going to be relegated to a has been. “Hey, remember that time back in ‘12 when I renamed a site collection without backing it up? “ I thought I was sunk.

Then the February 2015 CU came out.

Buried in all the bugs fixes and regressions was a cool new piece of functionality, the ability to rename site collections without backing them up or without copying them. Whatcho talkin’ ‘bout, Willis! In this blog post I’ll show you how to use it.

TL;DR

I know some of you have short attention spans, so I’ll throw out the PowerShell code to do this right away:

$site = Get-SPSite http://portal.contoso.com/sites/foo
$uri = New-Object System.Uri("http://foo.contoso.com")
$site.Rename($uri)


To get 100% success I have to force the Content Database to refresh its site map with this:

((Get-SPSite http://foo.contoso.com).contentdatabase).RefreshSitesInConfigurationDatabase

and run an IISReset. The IISReset isn’t always necessary, but it’s good to plan for it. If you have a short attention span, you’re released now. Smile Go chase something shiny. Look! A rabbit! If you want to see the rest of the story, keep reading.

The Whole Story

When I first learned about this new method for SPSites, it was billed as a way to change path based site collections to Host-Named Site Collections (HNSC). Path based site collections are the ones we’ve been using since the beginning of time. They have the form of http://servername/managedpath/sitename. In my Redirection blog post the $V variable in the picture halfway down the page is the path. It’s the unique part between site collections. A path based site collection has a URL that looks like this:

https://portal.contoso.com/sites/foo and https://portal.contoso.com/sites/bar

In both cases the host is the same, portal.contoso.com. The thing that makes them unique is the path; /sites/foo and /sites/bar. When using host named site collections it’s the hostname that’s unique. Examples are:

https://foo.contoso.com and https://bar.contoso.com

HNSCs are something that users have wanted since SharePoint came out. No one wants to type the full URL out, they all want to type something short. SharePoint 2013 has a soft limit of 20 Web Applications per farm, so that isn’t really an option. Previous versions of SharePoint offered functionality close to HNSCs, but it was never really usable. Thanks to Microsoft hosting SharePoint Online, and making heavy use of HNSCs, they’ve gotten much better in SharePoint 2013. I have no problem recommending them, in the right situations. The issue then becomes how to make the transition. Backing up your path based site collection, deleting it, then restoring into a HNSC works, sort of, but it becomes a real pain when working with large site collections. Also, deleting a site collection is scary business, and not for the faint of heart. Finally, it just seems unnecessary. All the juicy data is staying in the same place, why should we have to take it out just to put it right back in? Ain’t no one got time for that! February 2015 CU to the rescue.

Starting with build 15.0.4693.1001 we can change the URL of a path based site collection to that of a host named site collection. Here’s the whole process, with pictures:

First I created a site collection:

New-SPSite -Url http://portal.odfbdemo.com/sites/moveme -Template sts#0 -Name "Move me with PowerShell, Por Favor" -Description "Site moved with PowerShell" -OwnerEmail todd@contoso.com -OwnerAlias odfbdemo\todd

image

And threw it into a browser, just to make sure it worked.

image

Then I changed the URL in PowerShell:

$site = Get-SPSite http://portal.odfbdemo.com/sites/moveme
$uri = New-Object System.Uri("http://moved.odfbdemo.com")
$site.Rename($uri)

image

Then did a quick check to make sure it took:

image

It looks like it did. I’ll refresh my browser, just to make sure it’s really gone. It is.

image

Before my site collection can work at http://moved.odfbdemo.com that hostname must resolve in DNS. I could have created a single A record to handle that. Instead, since I knew I’d be doing a lot of HNSCs, I created Wildcard DNS Record. That will cover all hostnames at odfbdemo.com that don’t already have a record in DNS. After I made the DNS record I pinged it just to make sure it was working. If you try to ping the site up in your browser before you make the DNS change, you might have to restart your browser for it all to work. Browsers have been known to cache an IP address from time to time.

2015-05-22_13-19-05

With DNS squared away, let’s go back to the browser and try to load it up.

2015-05-22_13-19-41

Que up the sad trombone. Sad smile Turns out this was easy enough to fix. We need to run the RefreshSitesInConfigurationDatabase method on the content database our newly renamed site collection.

((Get-SPSite http://moved.contoso.com).contentdatabase).RefreshSitesInConfigurationDatabase

In a couple of cases during my testing I also had to throw in an IISRESET to really clear up the errors. After that, success was mine!

2015-05-22_13-35-23

One of the February 2015 CU KB articles mentions the new renaming functionality, but only mentions it in the context of going from path based to HNSC. That alone is impressive enough, and I could have stopped there. But I didn’t. I also tested this going from path based site collection to path based site collection. I must have eaten my vegetables that day because it worked. I used this PowerShell command to create the source path based site collection:

New-SPSite -Url http://portal.odfbdemo.com/sites/oldpath -Template sts#0 -Name "Move me from one path to another" -Description "Please work, please work" -OwnerEmail todd@contoso.com -OwnerAlias odfbdemo\todd

I made sure it worked in Internet Explorer, then I ran the following PowerShell to rename it to http://portal.odfbdemo.com/sites/shinynewpath

$site = Get-SPSite http://portal.odfbdemo.com/sites/oldpath
$uri = New-Object System.Uri("http://portal.odfbdemo.com/sites/shinynewpath")
$site.Rename($uri)
((Get-SPSite http://portal.odfbdemo.com/sites/shinynewpath).contentdatabase).RefreshSitesInConfigurationDatabase

It looked like this:

2015-05-31_14-50-28

Then I fired it up in Internet Explorer at its fancy new URL:

2015-05-22_13-41-34

I hate to brag, but it worked. Smile

It merits further testing, but on the surface it looks like it’s possible to rename path based site collections to new paths, or HNSCs.

If you try this, let me know how it turns out.

tk

ShortURL: http://www.toddklindt.com/RenameSiteCollections

May 30
Creating a Wildcard DNS Record for Fun and Profit

When working with Host Named Site Collections (HNSC) you have to keep on top of the DNS records. SharePoint can only do so much, after all. Since your HNSCs all have different host names, that is the point after all, they each need to be resolvable in DNS. If you’re only going to have a handful of HNSCs it’s easy to just drop into your DNS server and create them. It gets a little trickier when you add HNSCs down the road. You tend to forget to create the DNS entries. It becomes a lot trickier if you create a lot of HNSCs and if the SharePoint team doesn’t control DNS. Then it turns into constant tickets, the network team taking their sweet time, much swearing, and users have to wait for the beloved SharePoint site to come online. What if there was a way to prevent all that needless pain and suffering? I have the solution, wildcard DNS records (you probably guessed that from the title of the blog post).

We’re all familiar with the common types of DNS records, like A records and CNAME records. In most cases these records resolve a single address. For instance, the A record for www.toddklindt.com points to the IP address of my web server, 127.0.0.1. Smile However, it is possible to create a wildcard A record. This record provides a default value for DNS records that aren’t defined. In the context of HNSCs you would create a wildcard DNS A record that points to your SharePoint farm. Then when you create a HNSC with the URL https://foo2.contoso.com it will resolve to the SharePoint farm and work without having to bother those lazy gits on the network team.

To create a wildcard DNS record, create a record for *. Here’s how it looks in the DNS Manager in Windows 2012 R2:

2015-05-22_13-15-50

Here’s how it looks in glorious PowerShell:

2015-05-22_13-18-00

Add-DnsServerResourceRecordA -ZoneName odfbdemo.com -Name "*" -IPv4Address "172.27.1.2"

Here’s what it looks like when it’s created correctly:

2015-05-22_13-18-18

Again, this doesn’t resolve every host in the odfbdemo.com DNS zone to 172.27.1.2, only the hosts that don’t already have an A or CNAME record.

While there are other uses for wildcard DNS records, they are quite handy for HNSCs in SharePoint.

tk

ShortURL: http://www.toddklindt.com/CreateWildcardDNSRecord

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