Friday, March 30, 2007

Sharepoint Restore Locks

There have been a few occasions in the past where I found myself wondering why a scheduled spsbackup crashed on me. It always boiled down to a lock on the Sharepoint Configuration Database, which could only be removed by starting another backup with spsbackup.exe and removing the lock when prompted. These locks were often the result of an earlier Scheduled spsbackup crashing because of -for instance- scheduled maintenance on the farm.

However, just today I came across another locking problem. Having restored a 160GB backup set from one of the production farms to another testfarm, all kind of weird issues started popping up. When I tried to change the Farm Topology (sometimes a jolt here and there does the trick), Central Administration came back with this Warning:



So now we have two possible instances where Spsbackup-related locks can be found:
  1. When a spsbackup backup run doesn't complete succesfully
  2. After a spsbackup restore performed with spsbackup.

Luckily Central Administration was kind enough to provide a killswitch, which worked like a charm!

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Thursday, March 29, 2007

What a wonderful world

We live in interesting times.

I haven't posted for quite a while because of job and daddy-related responsibilities. Having two kids glee of joy at the prospect of embroidering with their mother is, well, a bit out of my world at times. But I love them still.
As of late, things are clearing up, giving me the possibility to start blogging again.

There are a lot of interesting things going on, like the Windows Home Server Beta, Team Foundation Server and ofcourse MOSS.


Windows Home Server.
This is a very interesting development, as Windows Home Server (WHS) will give your family at home the opportunity to have all your pictures, documents online, as well as access to all your home computers while you are away. How about backups of the laptop of your wife? Included. Central Printing facilities? Included. Can I go wild and create all kinds of websites? Yes you can. The base is good old Windows 2003 Server, which provides the platform you can build on. Think of the endless possibilities of Home Server combined with Visual Studio Express!

In a Proof Of Concept I have added WSS2.0 to Home Server. (I'll provide detailed instructions of how to accomplish soon.)

The goal of this exercise was to be able to add WSS to Home Server without too much tinkering, like adding a second website on a different port, or to go wild with host header mappings. This is why I have chosen WSS2.0 and not WSS3.0, because WSS2.0 still provides the possibility to exclude a part of the website. And we want to be able use the default Home Server website. Perhaps I'll look at the feasibility of WSS3.0 combined with WHS later.

Team Foundation Server
We'll start using Team Foundation Server (TFS) in a couple of weeks. It will be nice to see how this integrates and changes our way of working together. The approach I have chosen is a minimalistic one: we'll provide an environment with just the basics and work from there. I'll try to get a movement going of how we can improve things, adjust processes, use TFS to enhance the visibility of the things we do and what we accomplish. I try to keep an open mind for now and see where this approach takes us.

MOSS
In a couple of weeks our first -of three- MOSS projects will really take off.
Later more...

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