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Do You Have a Reliable IP Scanner Installed? Advanced IP Scanner is Quick & Easy.

Every Network Administrator or Security Administrator should have a few basic tools installed and ready to go at a moments notice.  Advanced IP scanner is a reliable and free network scanner.  It offers complete analysis of your entire LAN, showing live IP addresses and giving you the ability to remotely control systems with RDP and Radmin.  It’s installable or fully portable, so you can keep it in your Dropbox or NextCloud folder for convenient access.

 

Key features of Advanced IP Scanner include:

  • Remote Shutdown (and Wake-on-Lan)
  • MAC address to IP resolution
  • Exportable scan results via CSV
  • Quick access to discovered network shares
  • Remote Control via Radmin & RDP
  • Built-in tools such as SSH, tracert, telnet and ping.

 

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How to add a vLAN to a Cisco UCS using Unified Computing System Manager

Cisco’s UCS platform is an amazing blade infrastructure.  They are extremely reliable, very fast, and easily expanded.  Today, I’m going to briefly go over how to add a vLAN to your Cisco UCS setup, using the Cisco Unified Computing System Manager.  This guide assumes you have already configured the vLAN on your network and you have trunk-enabled ports being fed into your UCS and/or Fabric switches.

 

Go ahead and log into the Cisco UCS Manager.  Once you have logged in, select the LAN tab, then VLANs (in the left column).  Once there, click the New button, up at the top, and then Create VLANs.

 

For the VLAN Name/Prefix, give the VLAN a unique identifiable name.  In the VLAN IDs field, you need to enter to exact vLAN ID that was assigned to the vLAN when you configured it on your network infrastructure.  Once you have filled in those two fields, click OK.

 

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How to add a vLAN to VMware vSphere 5, 5.5, or 6, / ESXi virtual machine network

This is a simple step-by-step guide to adding / assigning a vLAN to a vSwitch virtual machine network on VMware ESXi and vSphere 5, 5.5, and 6.  Another way of putting it is adding a port group to a vSwitch.  It is a pretty straight forward process, but if you’ve never done it before it can be a little confusing.  We are going to create a Virtual Machine Port Group (network) that is assigned exclusively to a vLAN ID.  This guide assumes you have already created the vLAN on your switch and configured a trunk port to your virtualized infrastructure.

 

First, go ahead and log into the vSphere Client.  Once you have done so, navigate to Home > Inventory > Hosts and Clusters (if using vSphere).  If you are logging directly into an ESXi server, you should already be where you need to be immediately upon logging in.  Select your ESXi host in the left column, and then select the Configuration tab.  Once you are on the Configuration page, select Networking.  Select the Properties of the vSwitch you would like your vLAN to be assigned to.  In my case, I’m selecting the properties of vSwitch0.

 

2016-03-05 10_12_02-74.51.99.238 - vSphere Client

 

Now, we need to add a port group exclusive to the vLAN.  Click on Add.

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How To Install WDS (Windows Deployment Services) on Windows Server 2012 R2

This is the first in a three part series on “The Ultimate PXE Server Configuration.” PXE is the protocol that your network card can use to boot from the network. Having a good PXE server is a major need on every decently sized network or home lab. It’s really nice to never have to scrounge for a USB thumb drive or accumulate piles of burnt CDs that are only used once. All of those headaches can be avoided with a properly configured PXE server.

Microsoft Windows Server 2008 and 2012 both include what’s called WDS. This stands for Windows Deployment Services. This is a network boot (PXE) environment that allows you to install all sorts of different Windows versions, all over the network. A network install of Windows 7 or 8 over a gigabit network takes just a few minutes. It’s insanely fast.

In the Linux world, the defacto standard for PXE is the SysLinux package. It’s excellent for installing various Linux distributions, hypervisors (like vmware and xen), and tools (such as gparted, AV software, and disc cloning utilities). It even supports Windows installations, sort of. But, it’s quite a hassle.

In a perfect world, we would just combine both of these so that we can use WDS to take care of the Windows installations, and use SysLinux to handle linux installations, tools, and everything else. Well, guess what? You can, and that’s exactly what were going to to do in this series. The first post, the one you’re reading, covers installing WDS on Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2. The second post will cover adding SysLinux to WDS. The third and final part will cover adding a ton of useful tools and installation sources. So, let’s get it started.

Installing WDS on Server 2012 R2

There are a few requirements for a WDS installation.

  • Active Directory – You need to run dcpromo on your WDS server to make it a domain controller if you don’t already have one already.
  • DHCP – It’s best to use Microsoft’s DHCP server, and like AD, I will be installing this service right along side WDS on a single server.
  • DNS – WDS needs DNS, which you will obviously have if you have a domain controller.
  • (Optional) Web Server – IIS will work well. Some packages install via http. This isn’t needed for Windows installation.
  • (Optional) NFS Server – The NFS Server role under file and storage services works well. This isn’t needed for Windows installation.

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