I’m Back

Wow, so it has been a hell of a long time between the blog posts and so much has changed and I have so much to share with the world, I would love to have an excuse as to why I have not written a post but I have been from London to Glasgow and everywhere in-between since my last post and I have worked with some very talented individuals and some amazing companies. So I thought I would quickly write this to kind of set a schedule for myself and try and get back into the blogging for the website. 

So what have I been up to?

So this is why I haven’t worked on the blog for so long, I have been working with some amazing clients on a variety of projects from Active Directory uplifts, SCCM installs, PKI installs and upgrades to name a few, these have been inspiring me to write blogs, but with staying in London and Scotland during the week and only getting a couple of hours on a weekend between being with Sarah and doing my own business paperwork has meant that blogging has fallen by the wayside a little. Now that things have started to calm down, I am really wanting to get back on track and get this blog back up and running. Hopefully, this will not take me away from Sarah or my customers too much, but I still want to do this as I enjoy it. 

From a perspective of Sarah, well she is going from strength to strength, she has started her own Web Design company, she is really good at the design and SEO (even though she thinks she isn’t ). As well as still continuing with the Bespoke Dog Leads and Boarding Kennels (she works harder than I do).  So, getting that time together is sometimes hard. She has moved into her own office :), not sure if this is to get away from me or just because she needed the space. But the new network (we will get on to that) has gone into her office as well with the new server (new old tech it’s a Mac Pro).

I probably don’t say this enough, but Sarah is the love of my life and best friend, the fact she has put up with me for so long is a testament to her. The fact that we still have a laugh and giggle (I know she is reading this as she checks everything 😉 ) just cements us (as well as her being a geek at heart).

The network has changed

No matter how you put this into perspective, this network has undergone significant changes. The core networking and routing has gone through two iterations since we had the Airport Extremes in place, first of the implementation’s was a replacement using Amplifi kit from Ubiquiti and the second is a fully over done UniFi setup using Prosumer/SMB grade kit (even this went through a change as an Upgrade of the USG to a USG Pro 4 was also done).

The Internet has been sorted and we no longer need load-balanced modems satellite Internet or the like, as we have found Quickline who provide business internet and now have 50Mbs business connection over PTP Internet (9Km from our house sits Lincoln Cathedral where we get our internet from, not the longest connection or smartest connection I have seen or installed but Quickline did come to our rescue, this spawned the network upgrades.

All of the computers have changed (well my old ones have been passed onto Sarah) and the Mac Mini’s are no more (the one I did the transplant of the PCIe SSD is still here) the server is now a Hex Core Mac Pro with 64Gb of RAM, this has been the saviour of many of my Lab setups. This is coupled with x3 OWC Thunderbay 3.5” RAID Arrays and x1 OWC Thunderbay 2.5” RAID Arrays which is awesome. The Mac Pro also benefits from a dual 10Gb external network card.

Schedule of Blogs for 2019

For 2019 I have a few initial things I want to cover on the Windows and Linux side first, I also want to do more on the Mac side of things (I fixed a broken touch bar too) and really get from the high up things right into the technical things to share the knowledge with everyone. In a crowded market such as IT this can be difficult to get your page up the rankings (Sarah can help with this 😉 ). So, the list below is a rough idea of what is coming in the first quarter of 2019;

  • New Network infrastructure (I had to bring in help for this as well)
  • Unifi Cloud Key and its Limitations
  • Unifi SDN and Unifi Video and why I have them hosted virtually in Ubuntu
  • New CCTV infrastructure 
  • New Server and why the Mac Mini couldn’t keep up
  • Future server builds (am I moving away from Apple?) 
  • Parallels Desktop Pro
  • Building your first Active Directory Domain
  • Securing Servers (This is going to be a series looking at Firewalls, Networking GPO’s etc)
  • PKI Active Directory Certificate Services 
  • Microsoft Server 2019
  • Microsoft SCCM 2016 deployment (this is going to be a big one people)
  • How to set up an Ubuntu Unifi Controller and Video server

The above isn’t an exhaustive list or one that shows any order but I know I have to build a Domain Controller and a PKI environment so I may as well go through the motions of building out an SCCM Server 2016 in 2019 and why we don’t enable such things as WDS anymore. Recently, I wrote a 240-page HLD for a customer and Handover document of the as built and guide to managing SCCM 2016 I could have easily written over a 1,000, especially when you add in the CMG, Azure and Intune components as well as SCEP, and SUP.

From the point of Mac’s, I want to get back down to the home and small business users and what can be done to mitigate Apple’s insistence of crippling Apple Server app, and why I now need to go back into either Windows or Linux to get back the features of a server both as a home user and as a small business.

The Future

Well, Blogging will always be a big part of my website, it sits as a testament to my knowledge and is a really good thing for future customers to see the breadth of my knowledge as an extension to my CV and customer portfolio. 

As the site grows a little I want to get into making videos and getting things out this way, I have a Mac and Adobe as well as other editing software yet I don’t do video’s 😮 so getting content in video format hosted on YouTube, FloatPlane or some other media and linked back to this site will be good, it will also be good for you guys to see where I am in the world and be able to follow my AirBnB adventures ;). I don’t see the videos being subscription-based, so don’t worry 😉 .

The site is going to grow exponentially, you will notice that the theme has changed several times, this is thanks to Sarah who keeps everything fresh-looking, she also does the SEO for me as well so I don’t have to take too much of my time doing this. 

One thing in closing is that the WordPress backend has changed and somehow everything is now in “Blocks”, this is something else I need to get my head around, hence the lack of the usual colour scheme (Sarah to the rescue?).

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