Daily IT Matters, this is the place where I post my daily findings on IT.

Friday, September 29, 2006

SBS 11 tips for Home use

  1. Back up your important user data first.
  2. Purchase an external USB2 or IEEE 1394 (Firewire) hard drive and use it to back up important data from all your client systems. Afterward, you can use this drive for migrating data to the server and eventually it will become your backup drive for automatic server backups.
  3. Plan your network design. Take a look at the whitepaper "Understanding Your Network" on TechNet online (the link can be found in the "Additional Resources" sidebar) and choose the deployment scenario that best fits your home network design.
  4. Plan your external connectivity. If you want to set up your own Web site or receive external e-mail at your server, register a domain name. You might need to sign up with a DNS registration service like ZoneEdit or DynDNS if your Internet provider uses dynamic IP addressing.
  5. Plan your server. It doesn't take much to run a decent SBS server for a home environment. You'll need at least 512MB of RAM, two hard drives (small operating system drive and larger disk for user data), one or two NICs, UPS battery backup, and the removable hard drive mentioned earlier.
  6. Plan the domain details. Choose a domain name for your Active Directory—in other words, your Windows domain name. Figure out how many user accounts you need and what they'll be called. Decide what role each user will have in the domain. Choose a naming plan for servers, clients, and other resources.
  7. Use the wizards as much as possible. The wizards in SBS are your friends and should be the first course of action for anything using built-in features. They'll save you much time and hassle.
  8. Upgrade clients. If possible, upgrade your client operating systems to Windows XP Professional. SBS really shines when it's the heart of your domain. Windows XP SP2 is our recommended baseline until Windows Vista™ is available. Home editions and Windows 9x simply cannot join the domain.
  9. Enhance or expand your server as necessary. One big benefit of SBS is that it can be expanded in just about any way a Windows system can, but we suggest you try to keep it to processes that can be run as a service. Otherwise, you'll need to log onto the server and run applications after every reboot.
  10. Read the performance reports. We regularly (about once a week) scan through the performance reports and resolve any recurring problems or trends.
  11. Engage the SBS community. SBS has a vibrant community of MVPs, enthusiasts, and operating partners. See the links in the "Additional Resources" sidebar for a number of online sources of information and support. If you get stumped or have a problem, post it to the newsgroup. Chances are someone else has experienced the same issue and has a fix or workaround for your situation.


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