Windows Server 2012 and Installation Media

On Windows Server 2012, the installation of the server does not include all of the usual components necessary to support activating some of the server features and roles, such as the Application Server role with the .NET 3.5 framework.  The server will give you a warning about missing components and ask for a location of the installation media.  If you have the ISO or disk for the installation, you will find these components under drive:\sources\sxs.

I have to say I am not a fan of this model.  Early versions of both client and server kept the components separate, requiring you to have the original media every time you wanted to add a Windows feature.  Recent versions have solved this by including them, but certainly increased the size on disk.  I’d prefer the components to be copied, to avoid the necessity of installation media, and this can be done by manually copying the above directory to a location on the disk.  Why did Microsoft change this from being automatic?

Where is IE Compatibility mode in IE 11?

Windows 8.1 runs Internet Explorer 11 which has issues with some sites unless you run in compatibility mode.  However, compatibility mode have been moved!  In order to get to it, run the developer tools (F12 or Options, F12 developer tools), select last tab on the left navigation bar (Emulation or CTRL+8), and then select the appropriate User agent string.  In the example below, I have changed the browser to run as IE9.


Windows InTune and User Management

The addresses for Windows InTune and the user management online applications are not similar or on the same domain root, but are important to know if you wish to create users that InTune will then assign to devices.  Unfortunately, these are not obvious or easy to find.  So, in order for me to remember where they are when I am looking for them again in a few months, here they are.

If you wish to log into Windows InTune administration, you need to go to

If you wish to log into Intune User Administration, you need to go to

If you wish to manage your profile, you need to go to

If you wish to view the company portal, you need to go to

Not confusing at all…

Zip in .NET 4.5

I was trying to zip a file today in .NET 4.5 and after looking around on the internet for a bit, realized a lot of the code was for the beta of the 4.5 framework and not the final version.  There were some API changes between the two and so the process changed a bit.  Here is a sample of how to zip a file in .NET 4.5:

            // create a zip file 
            var zipFilePath = "c:\\");

            using (var zipFile = new FileStream(zipFilePath, FileMode.CreateNew))
                using (var archive = new ZipArchive(zipFile, ZipArchiveMode.Create, false))
                    var dbZip = archive.CreateEntry("log.txt", CompressionLevel.Optimal);

                    using (var writer = new BinaryWriter(dbZip.Open()))
                        writer.Write(File.ReadAllBytes("c:\\log.txt")); // here is where we read the file into the zip

The backups, the backups, oh the… wait, I don’t have them… DOH!

I know I should backup everything regularly.  I work in software.  Really, I have no excuse.  I’ve read several of Scott Hanselman’s posts on setting up regular backups.  I have some (manual) backups that I do on occasion, but nothing regular and certainly not comprehensive.  A few weeks ago, the blog hosting service canceled my account, they did not keep any backups (why would they?) and I did not have any backups of my blog posts.  Shame on me!  And so I am here, attempting to recover some of the posts through Google’s cache and the internet archive, with limited success.  The images are gone, but at least the text content is available.

The main lesson I have learned through this is that backups must be automated if they are going to regularly happen.  A manual backup is nice, but I forget, I get busy, I tell myself I’ll do it tomorrow, or any number of excuses.  The tools exist today for automating most backups.  I have no excuse.  Neither do you.

I echo Scott’s recommendation of having at least three backup locations.  I’ve spent the last several days setting these up, with cloud storage being one, a local NAS (network attached storage) drive being the second, and an external hard drive being a third.  I’m still in the process of doing this.  I will also be setting up services that run daily/weekly that will backup my mail, blog posts, and any content that regularly changes.  By the end of this, I’ll likely be backup crazy, but next time, I won’t lose content!

Continuing Windows Phone 8 Conversion from iPhone, Part 2

This is my continuing story on converting from the iPhone to Windows Phone 8. The first post was a week’s worth of notes and impressions on the change. I’ve had some time to research tips on phone usage, plus I’ve configured a few options that I think are worth applying to any user of Windows Phone 8.

Previously I had mentioned under the “Thinks I Like” heading that although I liked the contact integration across channels, I didn’t want to see my LinkedIn and Facebook contacts in my contact list. There is a setting for this, under Settings > Applications > People > Filter my contact list, and select the accounts to show in the Contacts. Note that Applications is a swipe right or left from the Settings screen.

Live tiles are growing on me. The Weather Channel and calendar live tiles are great! I also really like being able to resize tiles. With Large, Medium, and Small options, you can create a home screen that doesn’t require scrolling.

I like being able to snooze reminders, which is something I couldn’t do on the iPhone. Closer to being more business-oriented and Outlook-like.

I almost never have my ringer turned on and disabling this isn’t as simple as the hardware switch on the iPhone. While you can turn the volume all the way down, which turns the ringer off, you will also not hear any audio from the phone as well. If you just want the ringer off, go to Settings > Ringtones+Sounds and set the Ringer to OFF.

On the keyboard, hold down the period key to get a quick list of common punctuation symbols.

Recommended Settings

Here are some settings I’d suggest you enable/turn on.

  • Sign into your phone with your Windows Live account. The integration is fantastic. Really. Do it.
  • Turn ON battery saver, under Settings > Battery Saver. This will kick in when the phone’s battery gets low, though you can change that by clicking Advanced.
  • Turn ON group texting, under Settings > Applications > Messaging. This will group text messages sent to multiple people, as well as the received messages in the same thread.
  • Turn ON speech, under Settings, Speech. Enable Speech when phone is locked and the Speech Recognition Service.
  • Turn ON backup, under Settings, Backup. At least backup your app list and photos. Find my phone
  • Turn ON Find my Phone, under Settings, Find My Phone. You will want to check the “Save my phone’s location periodically” to enable this feature. Then go to, log in under your Windows Live account, and under the Find my phone, Ring it, which will bring up an authorization screen, and check to allow this functionality.

I really like my Nokia 820 and the microSD card option is great (especially since the phone only has 8GB of space, 3GB of which Windows uses). When I put the card in, the phone asked if I wanted new content saved to the card, and now space isn’t a concern. Not to mention a 32GB microSD card is way cheaper than buying a 32GB monster phone (Nokia 920).