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Bruce Mackenzie

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Backup & Storage

Xperf Rocks Part 2: Analyzing Storage Performance Data & Generating Graphs

Bruce Mackenzie-Low covers Xperf, one of Microsoft’s hottest diagnostic tools. This article continues where "Xperf Rocks Part 1: Troubleshooting Storage Performance Problems" left off. Part 2 focuses on how to use Xperf to analyze event data and generate graphs & tables. Powerful graph options are explained, which allow you to quickly pinpoint storage bottlenecks, along with the detailed data in a tabular format.

Jun 21, 2011

Backup & Storage

Xperf Rocks Part 1: Troubleshooting Storage Performance Problems

There is one crown jewel from Microsoft’s toolbox treasure trove that has not received much attention. Xperf, which is part of the Microsoft Windows Performance Toolkit, allows you to dig deeper into performance issues than Perfmon and PAL ever dreamed. In this article, Bruce Mackenzie-Low provides an overview of Xperf for troubleshooting Windows storage performance issues.

May 25, 2011

Backup & Storage

Top Storage Pitfalls to Avoid with Windows Failover Clusters

What to consider when configuring Windows Failover Clusters, by Bruce Mackenzie-Low. With a little planning and the help of tools like the Cluster Validation Wizard for failover cluster setup, you can implement failover clusters with confidence, ensuring proper setup when choosing partition size, configuring compatible and consistent storage drivers and storage controller settings.

May 17, 2011

Backup & Storage

Windows GPT Disks - Is Bigger Really Better?

Bruce Mackenzie-Low examines the benefits and disadvantages of MBR and GPT-based Windows disks. The 2 approaches differ in how they track the mapping of physical disk sectors to logical block numbers. MBR (Master Boot Record) is widely accepted, but partition size is limited to 2 terabytes. GPT (GUID Partition Table) was created to accommodate the larger partition sizes and offers greater resilience to corruption.

Apr 28, 2011

Backup & Storage

Implementing iSCSI Storage with Windows Failover Clusters

Windows failover clusters can now take advantage of iSCSI storage to access shared data. Using iSCSI reduces the initial investment costs for clusters by allowing you to use your existing TCP/IP networks instead of expensive SANs. This article by Bruce Mackenzie-Low explains how to set up iSCSI-based disks and configure them for use with Windows failover clusters.

Apr 15, 2011

Backup & Storage

Leveraging the Cluster Validation Wizard for Troubleshooting Storage Problems

How to use the Cluster Validation Wizard, also known as Validate, to perform a variety of tests to ensure that cluster components are accurately configured and supported in a clustered environment. Bruce Mackenzie-Low explains using the Cluster Validation Wizard to systematically test the storage subsystem in order to isolate any failing components, including generation of a Validation Report which documents the tests and their results, along with hyperlinks to detailed troubleshooting information such as failing disks and server names.

Apr 7, 2011

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