Why is my Virtual Machine loading so slow in VMware Fusion?

At work, I am assigned a MacBook Air to use it primarily and since it is running Mac OS, there will be times when I definitely will require a Windows image to do whatever I can’t do on a Mac. So there was this Windows 7 Enterprise virtual machine image that was provided by the IT team and have it loaded into VMware Fusion for use. There was this unbearable pain initially when using the image as it is simply crawling for me! When I meant, “Crawling” is that, each operation you made will take between 10-30 seconds to complete and sometimes it will hung there all the while!

I meddled around with the settings such as adjusting the amount of processor or memory that is allocated but to no avail. I was constantly monitoring the utilization on my Mac to make sure that I am not over-allocating too much to the Virtual Machine (VM).

I found this setting that once I toggle with it, the Virtual Machine went on speeding like crazily fast! (OK, just a little exaggerating here as it really makes a lot of difference!)

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Notice the portion that says “Hard disk buffering”. It is now set as “Disabled” as it works for me. Look at the other options that was available.

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So initially when the Virtual Machine is being configured, it was set to “Automatic” and thus the crawling of the whole VM which totally made the performance degraded.

There are a lot of articles online that tells you that you should disable this if you encounter performance degradation.

Cheers.

Milton Goh

[Consumer Review] – AirServer

Recently, I find myself needing to mirror the image from my Apple iPad to my computer during presentation so I went on searching for a tool that can help complete this task. As I uses Apple Mac at work, so I need something that is friendly to Mac but at the same time friendly to Windows too (Kill two birds with one stone).

Happened to chanced upon AirServer when I did an online search so decided to give it a spin since they offered 7 days trial. You may want to give the application a spin by hitting here. (You are not seeing the wrong thing, the link is a referral link that was assigned to my account. Well, I believe in a win-win situation. Definitely, you have all the freewill to hit the download section via the site directly as it doesn’t affect me at all.)

Installation Process

During the installation process on a Windows 8.1 computer, I encountered that there are more pre-requisites that is required as compared to installation on my Mac. Hereby, I will walk through the differences.

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As you can see, since I giving the software a spin and I want to be able to enjoy every single bit out of it. I wish to enable both AirPlay and Miracast.

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This is simple, downloading another driver to get it installed is easy matter since concise instructions was given. Just download the Bonjour Print Services from here and get it installed. Alternatively, if you have iTunes installed, you would have installed the Bonjour Print Services in one way or another.

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Second item on the list flagged out because I have selected Miracast is complex because I am installing it on my Intel NUC and Ethernet Lan was used all the time since I did not add Wireless Card in it. Well, too bad, I will just remove Miracast then.

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Run the check again to make sure all pre-requisites are installed and move ahead by clicking on “Next”. Agree to the EULA and continue.

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If you have downloaded the application via the site, you would have been prompted to either Sign-Up via logging into FaceBook or fill in the basic details to sign-up. Either way would have an Activation Code created on the screen.

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Change to the desire folder to install the AirServer but usually I will just leave it as default.

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This is rather a special way to phrase it. I always get options such as “Do you want to make this application available to yourself.” or “Do you want to make this application available to everyone?”. Something different at once… Click on to get the application installed.

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Usage

After installation, the AirServer application is launched and I am welcome to this screen.

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I seriously thought that I have entered the Activation Code once during registration and it seems like it hasn’t been registered. (To the AirServer Team, is this a bug?) This is the part where Internet Connection is needed as the application will hit back to one of the server at AirServer to make sure that the code entered is valid and not expired.

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Hooray! It is running now! Now time to give it a spin…

I was suppose to get it working by mirroring my iPad display to my Windows 8.1 screen but doesn’t seem working presently. However, all audio that are playing on the iPad are routed to the Windows 8.1 computer via AirServer.

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I don’t think this should be rocket science to setup but definitely doing it on an Apple Mac is way easier compared to Windows.

 

Compatibility

Operating System: Compatible PC / Compatible Mac
Sender: AirPlay Compatible Device or Miracast Compatible Source Device
Network: Source and Destination to be on the same Network. (Be it Wired or Wireless connected)
Internet Connection: Required only for Software Activation.

For this, I am so entice to get Miracast compatible source device. (I promise to write another blog post after I tried AirServer with my newly purchased gadget.)

 

Pricing

As you can see from the chart below which I have grabbed it from AirServer website.

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It just cost US$14.99 in order to enjoy the full function for life (perpetual license). It is not expensive at all for all the convenient it gives you.

Will you give this a spin or you have something better to recommend? Share with me via the comment box or drop me an email.

Cheers!
Milton Goh

Milton and his Microsoft Band

Kudos and big thank to Matthew Hitchcock (Microsoft PowerShell MVP and the Lead for Singapore PowerShell User Group) for bringing me one of this Microsoft Band from the US after his trip there for Microsoft MVP Summit (one of the perk as a Microsoft MVP! I am waiting for this chance to go too!).

Unboxing Process

So I collected this from Matthew on the day where we had our Community Technology Update (CTU) in Microsoft Singapore office. So it looks like this before I unwrap it.

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Finally I ripped off the bag to unveil the surprise inside (of course I know what I was expecting!) but still there is “WoW” factor!

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Matthew has helped to get extra charging cable and I am more than happy to buy it from him because I felt it is really helpful in this scenario.

  1. I could have one plug to my home computer and use it for charging when I am home during the evening.
  2. I could have the other one in my bag where I lug around everyday!
  3. I could use the one in my bag when I goes travelling.
  4. Act as a spare one if either one spoiled.

Now have a closer look at the FRONT OF THE BOX.

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Now have a closer look at the BACK OF THE BOX.

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Now have a closer look at the SIDE OF THE BOX. Now it tells you that this Band is friendly with all the three popular mobile platform but definitely have better integrate with Windows platform such as Cortana.

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I really like the way Microsoft has done this sizing thingy as I have never come across this before! Prior to getting this Band, I did print out the sizing guide downloadable from Microsoft Store US site to do the sizing. Of course with my big size wrist, I am definitely not hanging on with anything below Large.

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Now, after so many images, we are still UNBOXING it. We unbox it from one box to unveil another box.

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Microsoft has packaged it in a way that you are like opening the next watch box such as Hamilton one. (Well, I am aiming for one too but for now, I am still going for Smart Watches.)

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Connecting it for the First Time

First thing to do is to remove the cable from the box and connect it between the Band and your computer.

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Take a look at the back view of the Band.

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The next thing the Band instruct is to get the Application (Microsoft Health App) from the various store.

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It will toggle between this message and how you can connect it via BlueTooth to it from your phone.

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The overall setup is very easy and seamless, there is no complex games in it and no difficulty was faced during the process. For this, we give it a 5 stars out of 5.

 

Setup Process

Welcome screen of the Mobile Application.

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Sign in with your Microsoft Account (Live Account) and you are good to go!

Upon successful pairing up the phone with the Band, you will expect this screen.

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You are able to do some customization and personalization of the look on the face of the Band. Look at how the display changes when different colour and wallpaper is being selected. This will then be synchronized to the Band via Bluetooth.

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It continues to get things set up……

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So by default since this is the best time the Band was setup, there isn’t anything in the statistics.

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Using it for the First Time

The next important thing after buying the Band and Setting it up is, to wear the band. So I put on the band for the first time on a Monday where I set off to work.

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For whatever reason it is that the face of the Band has to be faced down, I wouldn’t know why and I wouldn’t want to pursue it. However, I only know that it is much easier to view messages coming in in a discreet manner compared if the face of the Band were to face up.

I took a long walk but was a little early so I stopped over at the cafe to have a cup of Milk Tea.

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What I like it to measure?

So after wearing it for an hour before grabbing a cup of tea, this is the number of steps that I have walked and measured by the Band.

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The things that I like how the Band gathered is:

  1. My Heart Rate
  2. Steps that I walked
  3. Calories Burnt

 

There are a lot more apps that can be connected to the Microsoft Band for now and definitely more are in the process of building. I have full trust with Microsoft that the next version of this band would definitely have significant improvement!

Cheers.
Milton Goh

Unboxing of Gadget–Toshiba Encore Mini

This post serves as my thoughts after viewing the blog post from the SharePoint Guru & MVP Todd Klindt.

I couldn’t see no reason not to buy one set of this to meddle with since it is really selling at a cheap price! Where on earth could you find a tablet with full load of Windows 8.1 at just USD 99?

So here is just my unboxing experience of this little monster. I will explain on how do I go about ordering one of this from the States later on since I resides in Singapore.

 

General Unboxing

The box is designed rather normal, just like any laptop that you can find in the market. I find it rather decent – probably this outlook earns a 4.5 out of 5.

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This is the side of the box clearly stated this is a Toshiba Encore Mini WT7-C16MS. My feel of the reason why the code “MS” appears is because this was a set that is resell by Microsoft US directly out. (I may be wrong, do not fault me!)

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Now, I shall open up the box and get welcomed by Windows 8 along with the Microsoft Signature Experience. This is the program that is available in the US where computers sold by Microsoft US that is enrolled into this program will have some perks tagged with it. Click on the link to check it out.

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One thing that I love about getting Microsoft products is that, I am never lack of getting other perks like Skype World Unlimited or Office 365 plans. Seriously Microsoft, I salute you!

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We are all good with the packaging, let’s now dive in deeper with what is inside the box.

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Does it look pretty decent too? Well, there must be something that you think it is short off such as the power adapter? Well, I think that isn’t on the mandatory list since the price is so cheap! The set itself is so light and battery could be charged easily via USB to another computer or if you have some of the 3rd party adapter; it will get the job done.

Let’s take a look at the side of the tablet.

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Remember to read the notices carefully! (Well, I ripped it off after taking this photo!)

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Comparison (vs Apple iPad Mini Gen 1 & vs Samsung Galaxy Note 3)

Let’s have the Toshiba tablet as a benchmark.

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Then we put the Apple iPad Mini Generation 1 beside it.

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I feel that the Toshiba tablet is about 2/3 of the size compared to the Apple iPad Mini. Screen size is definitely way smaller because of the Microsoft Licensing to the manufacturer that if anything that goes below certain inches (from time to time, this may change – therefore I am not quoting any sizes here), the license to the Windows client will be made free. This in terms bring the benefits to Manufacturer and Consumers. (Cheers to Microsoft again!)

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The back view of the two devices. Seems rather ok but at this time, I feel that the Toshiba tablet gives me a very “plastic” feeling where it may be more fragile than the Apple iPad Mini but anyway, an iPad Mini can purchase how many Toshiba tablet? (Do the mathematics yourself!)

 

Getting Stuffs from Microsoft US Store to Singapore

The answer to this problem is to thanks comGateway service of BuyForMe. I made the order via their online portal by inputting the details of the product I am looking for since Microsoft US Store only allows US credit card to be used for making payment. This is something that happened way before since my Toshiba tablet has arrived to Singapore already.

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The mobile application that comGateway has notified me via Push Notification and email that my items that I have engaged them to assist in the purchased has arrived at the US address and is pending the next action from me.

Administrative Fee

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Now, you must be wondering how much fee I have paid. Look at the image above, it clearly stated that the processing fee is US $4.95. The fee is so low (as it is 5% of the price of the total purchased order) that I could probably missed a cup of StarBucks drink just for this tablet.

Shipping Fee

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The shipping charges from US to Singapore is US $30. Well, does it make sense to you? Ship 3 of this tablet back to Singapore would get me one tablet for free. I see it as a form of investment to calm the little monster in me in which I am always yearning for new gadget. To each its own. If you think that your biggest drawback is the shipping, then probably wait for all these to be made available in Singapore or at least to our neighbouring country.

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This just merely just detailed how much heavy that tablet is in the box. I am poor in understanding how all these shipping charges are tabulated but since I want it OR need it, just get it over and done with.

Is your heart melted by the price tag or are you retreating because of the hefty price to pay for the shipping? Speak to me a little and see how my next purchase could include yours.

Cheers.

Milton Goh

Chance Upon–vSphere Mobile Watchlist (Mobile App)

While I was doing my usual surfing for mobile applications on my devices (iOS on iPad / Android on Samsung Galaxy Note 3), I happened to chance upon this application – vSphere Mobile Watchlist by VMware, Inc. Swipe through the available screen captures provided in PlayStore, I saw some exciting things that I can do with this application so I went ahead to down it.

The application looked like this in PlayStore.

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As what it is shown in the description, “Monitor the VMware vSphere VMs you care about and remediate any alerts remotely”. It is that simple right? Simplified the way System Administrator(s) work now!

Since I have a one-server vSphere environment at home, I quickly login to the environment to test out the application.

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Since my mobile phone and my lab server sits in the same network, I could easily access the vSphere instance without any issue. However, for other system administrators that are on the move most of the time or wish to work on a quick-fix or reboot a Virtual Machine (VM) in the movie theatre, then probably you will need to bypass security layer like connecting to the vSphere environment through VPN.

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After successful login, it just presented me with a very neat outlook (which is something that I like the most, don’t build unnecessary features that complicates things when we can do only this much in a small device like our mobile phone!).

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Clicking on the “+” (plus) sign on the screen will bring you to the list of Virtual Machine (VMs) available for selection. Initially, I have no idea what I should be doing! However, by a few knocks, I finally get to know how this works.

You will need to select the radio button shown on the left of each Virtual Machine listed and it will appear on the dashboard (or main page) of the mobile application.

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I selected a few and head back to the dashboard and you will see those selected are somehow the “highlights” that you may want to view instantly upon logging in using the mobile application.

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In the dashboard, there is two views (on the left which shows more details compared to the lesser details one on the right). It is rather useful if you really have lots of vSphere hosts loaded and you want your attention to be focus on selected VMs on every host. After all, you care for what is most important to you although all of them are equally important but in every environment, there will definitely be servers that has more weightage compared to the rest.

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Diving into the individual Virtual Machine gives you more details of the selected VM. On the glance, it just provides you with information that you want to care most. For example, if you received an alert from your monitoring tool telling you that one of your server are hitting the threshold of 80% in CPU utilization or the available storage is less than 10%. You probably want to validate that piece of information immediately upon login to your vSphere environment. Notice that there is 4 nodes at the bottom, it just means that there are more information if you swipe to the left.

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Page 2 shows you the console view while Page 3 gives you a list of commands that is available similar to what you see on the VMware console used for administering VMware Virtual Machines.

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Page 4 is one of the important one where it shows you all the Tasks & Events pertaining to the Virtual Machine. This will be really useful for troubleshooting purposes.

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Very comprehensive filtering features built in so that the Administrator could filter accordingly to what is the level of details he/she wants to view.

VMware is really good with graphical representation of the information that is gathered which I really really appreciate the team who developed all these. Some of the breakdown of the graphs that you will find.

CPU & Memory

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Disk

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Network

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Want to quickly send the current state of the individual Virtual Machine to your team mates to review or escalate to the next support level? Well, you could easily gather the information and email it over through your mobile!

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Remoting / Accessing the Virtual Machine

If you are at your weep-ends where you really need to login to the server to check out what is happening within the server, then the mobile application has built in something that is as similar to the experience you get during a Teamviewer session.

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Using the on-screen keyboard, it takes a bit of effort though (I am not a fan of working with small screen unless I really have to). It will definitely be more soothing to your eyes when the screen is rotated.

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That’s all for the Virtual Machine section. Now, let’s move on to the Host.

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Similar to the Virtual Machine view, it gives you a holistic view of the utilization of the Host.

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This view gives you all the Virtual Machine that is hosted within the vSphere host and the list of datastore visible to the vSphere host.

The statistical portion of the Host is exactly the same as the Virtual Machine so I will be omitting the screen shot to save some of your bandwidth. :)

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Much lesser functionality compared to Virtual Machine but is definitely aligned to the what it has in the VMware console. The Tasks & Events is the same as the Virtual Machine ones and filtering possesses the same as Virtual Machine too.

One very last feature that is useful for System Administrator when administering a farm of vSphere host and Virtual Machine is that, sometime you would want to group certain Virtual Machine and Host into different view as the different group may signify usage for different projects or team. Take a look at the feature “WatchList” where you are available to create new “WatchList” and pull in respective Virtual Machine you would like in this view.

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Select the Virtual Machine or Host that you want and then shift it into the WatchList.

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Do you find this application useful for System Administrator? Is there any features that are lacking from this? Share with me in the comment fields and let’s discuss!

Cheers.

Milton Goh

First Experience with Amazon Web Services (AWS) Glacier

Awhile back, I was looking for a solution where I can continuously archive a substantiate set of Surveillance media so that it can be offset from my local Network-Attached Storage (NAS) as the media file a day could get as large as 15-20GB depending on the amount of activities.

Here is the quick glance of the various services offered by Amazon AWS.

AWS_Glacier_01_Dashboard

Next, I will go to Amazon Glacier. This is the dashboard of Amazon Glacier if you have not used it before.

AWS_Glacier_02_Main_Dashboard

Amazon Glacier named each “Container” as “Vault” so each user could have multiple Vault to separate the different purposes. Perhaps in another way would be, each vault is for different project or different level of usage in the application so that to segregate the access to the files. 

The next important thing to me whenever I utilize “Cloud” services would be the region I am able to select because, Speed matters to me the MOST.

AWS_Glacier_03_Available_Region

I would love to have my files placed as close to me in Singapore but I guess Amazon still do not see the value or demand of this service here. Therefore, I went ahead with Tokyo as my next preferred location.

AWS_Glacier_03_Create_Vault

Create a new vault is really easy, no complex fuss about it at all. Just key in the name of the vault and you are good to go!

AWS_Glacier_05_Create_Notifications

So you like notifications when your automated jobs run at weeps hours and notify you when it is completed so that you can have a sound sleep and waking up to reading “Success”. (Really sounds like an Ops Guy at work yeah?)

Somehow this notification thingy is related to the other service that Amazon has to offer. I would not be diving in into too much of it yet as my whole intention was to find a low-cost storage that can be offloaded from my local environment where I can quickly find and grab files as and when needed. For more information, click here.

AWS_Glacier_06_Listing

Newly created vault will appear in this Dashboard where it will list down all the Vault(s) available. What is important in this dashboard is,-

  1. Size – the amount you utilized and you be charged the following month (because Amazon AWS charged based on your utilization)
  2. # of Archives – is the number of Archive important to you? Yes, it is important to me because I am kind of meticulous about this. What if the media file that I need the most is missing, it should at least tally with the amount of files uploaded etc..

AWS_Glacier_07_Vault_Information

The setup is all done up, the vault is being created and ready to be utilize. Here is the various ways to access the Vault to Store/View/Grab/Update files on it.

Cheers.

Milton Goh

Woot! Now you get #UNLIMITED space on #OneDrive ?!?!

To start of my day when I was commuting to work, I read on FaceBook through my friend (Chee Yong Poh, Microsoft Technical Evangelist) re-shared a post on The Verge that Microsoft has decided to provide UNLIMITED space on OneDrive – read the article here.

How would this change affect you? Well, when I was dwelling whether to archive my media that I will no longer require access to it on a regular basis to put it into the cloud so that it will not hurt the almost-filled NAS further. I was deciding between Amazon Glacier, DropBox and OneDrive but I tried Glacier at first because it is something pretty cool while OneDrive and DropBox has been in my daily life already. From my previous article titled “Is there something missing in #OneDrive ?” where I talks about something related as it shows that I am uploading all the media files to OneDrive.

So where is the value proposition of Amazon Glacier? Where would you see the value in OneDrive over Amazon Glacier? Well, in terms of space consumed and amount paid or you will be paying. Let’s see.

Microsoft OneDrive Cost (USD) Amazon Glacier Cost (USD)
100GB $6.99 100GB $1.00
500GB $6.99 500GB $5.00
1024GB (1TB) $6.99 1024GB (1TB) $10.24
2048GB (2TB) $6.99 2048GB (2TB) $20.48
10240GB (10TB) $6.99 10240GB (10TB) $102.40

 

Do not forget that Amazon Glacier charges you to bring the data out from the cloud back to any devices you are trying to retrieve from while Microsoft OneDrive, it is the same as DropBox or Box storage where it does not implicitly charge you for data transfer. (Of course, you can’t complain much if the retrieval takes forever! *evil grins*)

Do you have more than 1TB of data to store to the Cloud right now? – Yes, go to Microsoft OneDrive now!

Do you require your data to be used by other cloud services in Amazon? – Yes, stick to Amazon Glacier, there are nice API that can do retrieval from the vault.

Do you need Office suite of products? – Yes, go to Microsoft OneDrive now!

Has this come across to you that storage is getting cheaper and cheaper and Microsoft is well aligning its strategy to Cloud-First, Mobile-First?

 

Do you know that you can sign up to enjoy the unlimited storage first? Hit on to https://preview.onedrive.com/ now!

Cheers.
Milton Goh

Is there something missing in #OneDrive ?

Just when I subscribed to the Office 365 Personal in order to get that 1 Terabyte (TB) of space so that I can start archiving some of the files that I do not required sitting in my home NAS that are filling almost up quickly since the total usable space is 1.5TB. (I know it sounds like it is time to upgrade but looking at schedule where I intend to do a home renovation, I think I will leave those new gadgets coming in after the renovation.)

The latest statistics of the amount of space that I have packed into my account is:

image

So during the course of the first few days into actively pushing some of the media files to OneDrive, I found out something that I feel missing out. So I started of using Google Chrome for all my surfing experience (yes, I do love Internet Explorer too) and started uploading files via the OneDrive web portal.

Google Chrome

The browser that offers two upload options as shown:

  1. Files
  2. Folder

OneDrive_Chrome_Upload_Options

Notice, it reads as “Files” and “Folder” where it is missing something!

Number 1 – *MISSING WHAT?*: Why can’t I have an option to upload multiple folders?

Then I went ahead to upload by single Folder at a time since each folder contains multiple huge files, it does not matter to me actually. So after uploading the 9th or 10th huge folder, I start to ponder upon something that is missing.

OneDrive_Chrome_Upload_5of22

OneDrive_Chrome_Upload_22of22

Do you all notice the difference? It caught my attention why when it was uploading 5th file out of the 22 files that I have, the amount it has progress in the blue bar is showing perhaps 5-8% of the total length. However, when it is already in the process of uploading the last file, it only show almost 25% taken up! So, what’s the big deal about the remaining 75%?

Number 2 – *MISSING WHAT?*: What happened to my progress bar?

OK, that’s all for Google Chrome. Next on the list… Internet Explorer!

 

Internet Explorer

So I wasn’t quite convinced with how Google Chrome works, so I went ahead and try out using Internet Explorer (IE) as always Microsoft line of products should all work almost seamlessly together.

Number 1 – *MISSING WHAT?*: Why can’t I upload by Folder??????

image

Notice that for the “Upload” portion, there isn’t any option for me to choose between a Single File or Multiple Files or Single Folder. It is just, go ahead and select something out of a single folder.

So by using Internet Explorer, users will have to first create the appropriate folder then upload the files into it as shown.

OneDrive_IE_Upload_20_Items

One thing for sure that is working is the progress bar… *Yayyy*

OneDrive_IE_Upload_20_Items_01

OneDrive_IE_Upload_20_Items_02

 

I don’t know who to reach out to but I hope that Microsoft will consider to allow uploading of multiple folders via the OneDrive web portal one day.

Do you have similar experience as me? If yes, why not share it with me by commenting below.

Cheers!

Regards,
Milton Goh

My Ez-Link Mobile Application–Convenient at a cost.

The company that take care of all our electronic card (EZ-Link) that commuters used on a daily basis while commuting has released its own mobile application for mainly the Android and iOS platform. The mobile application has been sitting on my phone for awhile and until just yesterday I decided to give it a spin again. In the past, I used it mainly to check the values that is remaining in my card as I am a lazy commuters who doesn’t bother looking at the gantry indicators whenever I go through.

Let’s roll over to the mobile application itself.

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This is the start screen of the application. To get things started, there is a need to scan the EZ-Link card to know what other functions is available.

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Once I place my EZ-Link card at the back of my Samsung Galaxy Note 3 with NFC enabled, I will be able to get all the details.

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OK, previously I have scanned this card and save this card as per identified as “Milton’s Ezlink” as usually one card is tie to one person. However, there is no ruling that one person cannot own more than one card but that isn’t something that I required as of now. (I have intentionally replaced the CAN ID so that it is not known, I personally do not know the implications if someone knows my card ID but just want to be on the safe side). This application gives me a break down of my last few trips made or rather the last few transactions that was performed using this card. This actually reminds me of the past where I commute using Bus / MRT during work and we will need to access one of the machine at the nearest station to print a transaction receipt so that I can claim it from the company. Although it is just less than a dollar or two but when things adds up, it could foot the bill for a meal for one easily.

So is there any situation where you are about to leave home for work or anywhere else and you wish to take the public bus but to realize that your EZ-Link card runs low on value? On top of that, you have run out of coins to use to pay off the bus fare and aren’t willing to throw in a two-dollars note to pay off a ride that may only cost you 90-cents or one-twenty?

Here the mobile application come to your rescue! Touch the “Topup Card” feature as shown in the previous screen image then you are on your way to top-up your EZ-Link card using E-Payment such as Credit Card.

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Select the desire amount you want to top-up and continue. My recommendation here is to select the highest amount available! Will come to it shortly.

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Now do you see why? Do you see that greeny weeny “Convenience Fee” that the Credit Card merchant is going to impose for helping you to make sure you don’t lose out? Be it $10, $20 or that mean option of $5, you will still need to pay for the thirty-cents “Convenience Fee”! So be wise, since you paid for the convenient, utilize it fully!

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From the back of my mind, I do not remember that I have keyed in my date-of-birth anywhere when I set this whole thing up, but nevertheless, I couldn’t have forgotten about when I was hatched from the egg. Go ahead, enter the value and proceed. (Maybe I would try to provide false information and see what the application will prompt me)

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Lastly, enter the Credit Card information and proceed… Hooray! EZ-Link card topped up! (Oops, I didn’t continue because I still have values in my EZ-Link card but wonder would I ever fall in such trap where I do require to use this feature!)

In the current era, technology has advanced so quick that providing convenient to consumer is on the top priority. Integrating many solutions into one so that to leverage on expertise from different field or industry.

Have you used this application before? If yes, share with us how it goes for you. If no, why not? Would you give it a spin like what I did? Perhaps, that one day you would really need this?

Find this Android Application over here.

Cheers.

Milton Goh

Hola! It’s Q4’ now! Windows 10? MVP?

Time flies! We are now into 4th Quarter of the year and usually it means more work till end of the year where people starts to go on vacation especially during Christmas period. So yesterday was the 1st of October where there are a couple of highlights going on globally.

  1. Announcement of newly-minted and renewed Microsoft MVPs. – For this, it would be exciting if I am being awarded but I know I have not done enough yet to deserve that award. Nevertheless, I will continue trying, contributing to this huge community that I have received lots of goodies (information) from.
  2. Technical Preview of Windows 10 – This is interesting as Microsoft has welcome everyone to be part of the building process to help provide feedback to the desire OS that users want / need. If you are still unsure of the Technical Preview – find it here.

I didn’t have the energy to stay up all night waiting for the link to be active so early in the morning when I hop out of bed, I quickly refreshed the URL and started downloading the ISO. After that, the next thing I did was asking myself whether that piece of OS would be available on Microsoft Azure yet. To my surprise, it is! Then I took Windows 10 off on a spin on Microsoft Azure.

If you still do not have a Microsoft Azure account, I would encourage you to sign up here.

Let’s start the ball rolling…

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*Hooray!* See! Windows Server Technical Preview October 2014~

The next few screen shot will be familiar for some if you have played around with Microsoft Azure (Virtual Machine / IaaS) before.

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*Shucks* – “Fastest fingers first!” Obviously I lost it…

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OK, we are almost there… It is provisioning and should be ready in a couple of minutes. That’s something I really like about using Microsoft Azure. I could skip wasting time and it increases my productivity especially when I am trying to find out some small items like available features or configurations.

After spinning up the Windows 10 Virtual Machine in Microsoft Azure, below is some of the noticeable changes that I have found out after meddling with it for around 30 minutes.

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*Proof* – I am running Windows Server Technical Preview (aKa Windows 10) as the overall outlook is still very similar to Windows Server 2012 / R2 although the BGINFO on Microsoft Azure still tells me I am running Windows Server 2012 R2.

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1) Taskbar

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An additional icon beside “Server Manager” which I will explained about it later. Document folder icon also has a new icon image.

2) Start Menu (is back!)

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3) Multiple Desktop (somehow, this is what I have experience when I was using Mac OS in the past with my Mac Mini, MacBook Pro & iMac)

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This is really good if you are very organized person. Probably good for me when I decided that when I am writing PowerShell scripts, I should not be looking at my Social Media programs like Twitter. Smile with tongue out

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Ability to add (don’t know whether it is unlimited or limited yet) more desktop.

4) More icons changes

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5) Additional Role (Merging the Multipoint Services)

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This is something not available in Windows Server 2012 R2 where I verified using one of my Virtual Machine.

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6) Missing Features

Notice that there is one feature that is missing starting from Windows 10. The Windows Identity Foundation 3.5.

This is a screen that I have in Windows Server 2012 R2 and can’t be found in Windows 10.

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Overall, I really like how Microsoft has decided to allow the general public to do the testing, provide the necessary feedback and always listening to customers feedback. I will continue meddling with this new OS in the coming weeks and how it fits into a typical enterprise.

Cheers.

Milton Goh

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