Citrix Provisioning Server 5 – A06

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Provisisioning server 5.0 Exam (A06)

Last week I did the Provisioning Server 5 exam from Citrix and passed it without any troubles. I got a partner offering from to do the Xendesktop training which includes 2 e-learning courses and 2 exams vouchers. It was a little tough to get a hold of somebody who could deliver the vouchers but CDG in the Netherlands got back to me in a couple of hours and delivered me the first vouchers so I could start with the e-learning training.

I really like the e-learning training from Citrix they are put together with great care and the cover all the material step by step. After the introduction and some basic stuff there are the Toolwire laps. You get a full blown Dell server with Xenserver preinstalled and the exercise material ready to go. You get 30 days to complete all the laps and of course I started It and let it expire till the last day before the exam, I contacted the Citrix learning support and got another 30 days without any questions asked within 6 hours. It took me about 8 hours to complete the course and after that I was confident to take the exam, there are exercise questions after every chapter to test your skills as you go.

The exam wasn’t to hard there were 51 questions some of them were in the exercise questions in the e-learing others were out of the blue. The following subjects were in the exam : Planning an Implementation, Configuring Initial Setup, Managing, Maintaining and Troubleshooting Citrix Provisioning server 5. Especially the last part Troubleshooting was a bit tricky so some extra attention is required.

Transforming the site back to English

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The site is undergoing some changes, after a year primarily writing in Dutch its now time to pick up the English language again. Google Analytics showed that most visitors are English speaking so why don’t fool myself and write something most can’t read. So be patience if an article isn’t translated yes. If you can’t read something sent me a message I’ll get back to you translating it.


Windows 7 applications loosing their icon’s.

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Windows 7 applications loosing their icon’s.

I lost my icon from outlook 2007 below the fix for the problem, the simple way to rebuild the windows icon cache. The icon cache can be cleared and rebuild by deleting the file : IconCache.db this is a hidden file.

Here the way how to solve the issue.
  • Start Task Manager.
  • In the Process tab, right-click on the Explorer.exe process and click End Process.
  • Click the End process.
  • Click file of Task Manager and select New Task (Run…)
  • Type CMD.EXE and click OK
  • In the Command Prompt window, type the following:

CD /d %userprofile%AppDataLocal
DEL IconCache.db /a

  • In Task Manager, click File, select New Task (Run…)
  • Type EXPLORER.EXE, and click OK.

Now the icon cache is cleared and the problem should be resolved.

Checkdisk is running at every startup

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1. click on your start menu and open the run dialog.
2. type “cmd” and press enter
3. Next type “fsutil dirty query c:”
4. If the return message indicates that the volume is dirty go to step 5
5. Next type “chkdsk c: /f /x”
6. After that finshes repeat step 3.
7. If it is no longer dirty then reboot and you should notice no more

HA error on all ESX servers

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A customer had 17 ESX servers in stress, after a thermal error 3 blades went off line and disk 0 was gone. HA gave an error on all servers and reconfigure HA didn’t do the job.

An error occurred during configuration of the HA Agent on the host was the error. I disabled HA on the cluster and enabled it, afther this action ervy server was back online and no error’s. I suppose that the setting that only 2 servers can fail for HA was course of this error, 3 servers went down at the same time and VMware ESX did’t see the old servers online therefor it was not allowed to reconfigure the hosts for HA. Disable HA and enabling HA pushes an new HA settings set to the ESX servers and makes it possible to reconfigure it for HA.

Exchange 2003 memory optimalization

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Maximizing virtual address space

It is best to monitor the virtual address space for the Information Store on large mailbox servers to make sure that performance and stability does not decrease. The easiest way to do this is to monitor the VM Largest Block Size counter of the MSExchangeIS performance object in the Performance utility. This value is shown in bytes. After you start the computer, it is typical to see a sharp decrease in the largest virtual memory block size. However, after a day or two of operation, the value approaches a typical operating level. A value for the largest free virtual memory block that is more than 200,000,000 bytes (about 200 MB) indicates a healthy server. If you notice a lower value than this, monitor the server more closely. If you experience a low virtual address space:

  1. If you have 1 GB or more of physical memory installed, make sure that the /3GB switch is set in the Boot.ini file if the following conditions are true on the server:
    • The server is home to mailboxes or public folders.
    • The operating system is Windows 2000 Advanced Server or Windows Server 2003.

    If the server does not have any mailboxes or public folders on it, such as a mail gateway, we do not recommend that you use the /3GB switch.

  2. If Exchange Server 2003 is installed on a Windows Server 2003-based server, and if it has the /3GB switch set, make sure that the /USERVA=3030 switch is set in the Boot.ini file. If Exchange Server 2003 is installed on a Windows 2000-based server, make sure that the server is running Windows 2000 Service Pack 3 (SP3) or later.
  3. If you have 1 GB or more physical memory installed, configure the HeapDeCommitFreeBlockThreshold registry value in the following registry key, and then restart the server:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetControlSession Manager
    Value name: HeapDeCommitFreeBlockThreshold
    Value type: REG_DWORD
    Value data: 0x00040000 (recommended)
    Value default: not present

To add the /3GB and /USERVA switches to your Boot.ini file, simply open Boot.ini in a text editor such as Notepad, add the /3GB and the /USERVA=3030 parameters to the startup line, and save your changes. The changes will not take effect until you reboot the system.

The boot.ini will look like this :

[boot loader]
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)WINDOWS=”Windows Server 2003, Enterprise” /noexecute=optout /fastdetect /3GB /USERVA=3030

The memory optimilization error in the event viewer will only disapear when the registry key is edited with : 00040000

Enable VMware EVC IBM Blades

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There are a lot of questions how to enable Vmware EVC on IBM blades. Here the configuration how to on a IBM HS21 blade :

1. Go to Bios : F1

2. Go to : Advanced Setup.










3. Go to CPU Options







4.Set Processor Execute Disable Bit = ENABLED





Now the ESX blade can be added to the EVC enabled cluster.

Reset Group Admin Account Equallogic

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Dell Resetting the group admin account of an Equallogic device can be done the following way, of course the best way would be to call Dell support 😉

1. Turn the Array off !

2. Make a connection with a serial interface to the active controller.

3. Turn the array on

4. press during boot CTRL+P



5. now the account is set back to default.

Done !



Host in HA Cluster must have userworld swap enabled

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Error when enabling HA on ESX 3.5 i servers : Host in HA Cluster must have userworld swap enabled

This error you get from a lack of storage reservation for saving the HA settings on the ESX3.5i. You can set this using the following procedure.

To enable swap on your ESXi 3 host system:
  1. On the VirtualCenter Server, select the ESXi 3 Server host.
  2. Click the Configuration tab.
  3. Click Advanced Settings.
  4. Choose ScratchConfig.
  5. Configure ScratchConfig.ConfiguredScratchLocation to a valid directory with sufficient space (1GB) to hold the userworld swap file. The userworld swap can be configured on local storage or shared storage.

    Note: Each swapfile needs a unique name across all ESX hosts.

    For example, /vmfs/volumes/.

  6. Select the ScratchConfig.ConfiguredSwapState option.
  7. Click OK.
  8. Reboot the ESX Server 3i system.
After you have enabled swap on the ESXi 3 host system, you can add the host to a VMware HA cluster.

Source : from the VMware Site