Quick commands to see Windows uptime

If you’re in the systems administration/engineering field, you are most likely as obsessed with uptime as I am. From time to time, it’s fun to see how long a server has actually been up and running. This is simple on Linux machines via the ‘uptime’ command. However, on Windows it has never been as straight forward. Here are 3 ways that you can find out how long a Windows box has been up.

Open a cmd prompt (Start->Run->cmd) and type the following.

C:\>net statistics server | Find "since"
Statistics since 10/24/2011 8:43:24 AM

 

C:\>systeminfo | find "Time"
System Boot Time:          10/24/2011, 8:42:07 AM

Lastly, you can open the task manager (Alt+Shift+Esc, or Alt+Ctrl+Delete, or Start->Run->cmd->taskmgr). Under the “Performance” tab you will see a counter of system uptime.

Some helpful Exchange commands to know

I used to think that I could be considered a ‘seasoned vet’ when it came to Exchange. But that was back before the 2007 release… The new Exchange Management Shell has definitely taken some getting used to. Very powerful – yes. However, you’re still stuck in this small Windows ‘cmd’ screen with it’s poor formatting and unhelpful errors.

Slowly but surely, I’m getting used to the new interface and tools. Here are three commands that I use on a regular basis for reporting and status updates.

This command prints out a sorted list of mailbox sizes and users

Get-MailboxStatistics | Sort-Object TotalItemSize -Descending | ft DisplayName,@{label="TotalItemSize(KB)";expression={$_.TotalItemSize.Value.ToKB()}},ItemCount

 

Next, let’s show the current status of replication for a mailbox store. MAIL01 is our master and MAIL02 is being replicated to.

Get-StorageGroupCopyStatus -Identity MAIL01\StorageGroup1 -StandbyMachine MAIL02 | fl

 

The last one is very important for backups. It checks to see if the Exchange backups are properly working. The file you need to check is the .chk file in the storage folder.

# eseutil /mk M:\StorageGroup2\e03.ck
Output should look like this:
Extensible Storage Engine Utilities for Microsoft(R) Exchange Server Version 08.03 Copyright (C) Microsoft Corporation. All Rights Reserved.
Initiating FILE DUMP mode...
Checkpoint file: M:\StorageGroup2\e03.chk
LastFullBackupCheckpoint: (0x0,0,0)
Checkpoint: (0xCDCD,300,0)
FullBackup: (0xCBED,8,16)
FullBackup time: 09/28/2011 14:17:45
IncBackup: (0xCD2B,8,16)
IncBackup time: 09/29/2011 20:15:15
Signature: Create time:03/07/2011 15:19:46 Rand:852206513 Computer:
Env (CircLog,Session,Opentbl,VerPage,Cursors,LogBufs,LogFile,Buffers)
( off, 652, 32600, 16384, 32600, 2048, 2048,2000000000)
Operation completed successfully in 0.63 seconds.

Microsoft Office Communicator 2007 Got’cha

 We have an Office Communicator 2007 setup in my office. I’ve found this communication tool beneficial for our office environment. Two of the biggest benefits from this application is that people’s current status is sync’d with their Outlook Calendar. So if you have a meeting at 1PM, your status icon will immediately change to Red and mark them as "busy". This status indicator shows up in several places, including the IM contact list, anywhere in Outlook that their address is defined (address book, emails, tasks, etc.), and Sharepoint.

The second huge benefit that I’ve found in Communicator is that all conversations are saved and organized in a folder within my Outlook Mailbox. There are many more benefits that come with this program but these are my two favorite.

We recently ran into an issue with one someone’s computer not performing any of these tasks. Communicator worked just fine but these two "auto" features were not working and no errors were being reported. After quite a bit of troubleshooting and searching, I finally found an explanation on Microsoft’s website. This particular user had Office 2010 64-bit installed for the additional benefits in Excel. As it turns out, Office x64 is not at all compatible with Office Communicator due to this and there is no work-around.

Communicator integration    If you install the 64-bit version of Office, certain Microsoft Office Communicator 2007 features that involve integration with Outlook are lost. For example, you cannot right-click a Communicator contact to schedule a meeting, send an e-mail message, or find previous conversations. This is because Office Communicator R2 is 32-bit, and Messaging Application Programming Interface (MAPI) calls do not cross the 32-/64-bit boundary.

More Info can be found here: office.microsoft.com/en-us/word-help/choose-the-32-bit-or-64-bit-version-of-microsoft-office-HA010369476.aspx

No word yet on if their newly re-branded product, Microsoft Lync fixes these issues or not. 
Hopefully this can save someone else a few hours of frustration getting these two to play nice.