Windows 8.1 Enterprise

Enterprise versions of Windows are only available via SA (software Assurance) and o lot of companies don’t have SA with the result that they cant use features like Direct Access and bitlocker.

Now Microsoft has announced that Windows 8.1 Enterprise will be available via Select, Select Plus and Open and all companies can now use the Enterprise version in there environment for en extra fee


Remote Desktop License Error in Server 2012

I found a strange behavior on two remote desktop servers at a customer today. They were 2 windows Server 2012 with remote desktop role installed. They were setup with a GPO telling what RD license server to use and what mode to use. Everything looked ok in the RD Licensing Diagnoser and the servers issued licenses to users.

Today, when the 120 days grace period ended, no users could log on. The error message said that there were no licensing servers available.

The solution was to take ownership on the registry key HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server\RCM\Grace Period and then I gave administrators full Control on it and then I deleted it. After a reboot the server worked fine again as a Remote Desktop Server.

Upgrading you’re private cloud to 2012 R2

There is a great session from Teched that address the issues with upgrading you’re private cloud. It can be watched at

Basicly you want to do the upgrade in this order

1. Upgrade Systemcenter to 2012 R2. You need VMM support for the migration and SCOM and DPM for monitoring and backup. Use a separate database server for the VMM to make the migration easier
2. Evict one (ore more) fileservernode fom you’re file server cluster and create a new one-node file server cluster
3. Run the cluster migration tool to set up the new file server cluster with the same resources as the old one
4. shut down you’re VMs
5. Stop the filshareresource on the old file cluster
6. Stop the storage on the old file server cluster
7. Start the storage on the new file server cluster
8. Start the fileserverresource on the new fileserver cluster
9. Start you’re VMs
10. Break the old filserver cluster and add the nodes to the new file server cluster
11. Evict one (or more) node from you’re Hyper-V cluster and create a new Hyper-V cluster
12. Do a live migration of VMs to the new cluster so you can put another node in the old cluster in maintenancemode
13. Move another node to the new cluster
14. Do a live migration of VMs to the new cluster
15. Repeat untill all VMs and all Hyper-V nodes are moved to the new cluster
16. Upgrade the integrated components in the VMs

There is only one downtime in this process and it can be reduced by adding a new fileservercluster and new storage instead of reusing old hardware and by doing a storage migration in VMM to the new fileservercluster.

There is a risk by using one node clusters in the proccess because you are not high availability all and that risk an be redused by adding new hardware or by moving two nodes at the time and create new two-node clusters.

It doesn’t matter if you upgrade storage (file server cluster) first or if you upgrade the compute cluster (Hyper-V) first.