Vacation Over, Now Its Crunch Time

I haven’t posted much lately (what else is new), partly because of travel, but now due to work.  We’re gearing up for fall semester, and while normally August 1 wouldn’t cause me to panic, we’re cutting it a bit closer this year.  Our MBA program is starting earlier than usual as part of a reworking of the program, cutting a couple weeks out of the time we normally have to do summer projects.  It wouldn’t have been so bad, but no one involved in the process checked with us to see whether these changes would have any impact on our department.  Even if hey had, I doubt they would have made any changes, but it would have been nice to be consulted.  Oh well, we’ll roll up the sleeves and get it done, maybe not everything, but most of it.

I’m in the process of setting up a clustered file and print server using Windows Storage Server (WSS).  I’ve been pleasantly surprised at how easy setting up the cluster was.  I have the virtual print servers up, and half the printers migrated over.  Next step is to get our printer accounting software installed, then redirect everyone’s printer connections.  After that it will be time to move over the file shares from our two existing file servers.  I’m especially looking forward to moving our faculty data over to the cluster to take advantage of the single instance storage feature on WSS.  Many faculty have several GB of files duplicated across several folders, much of it part of historical class data with certain files used every year without any changes.  With SIS, I expect to recover at least a quarter of the 650+ GB of faculty data we host.  I also plan to take advantage of DFS to provide a more logical way to get at our data.  Check back in a couple weeks and see how things went.

We’re also starting to bring up our first Exchange 2007 box, a CAS and Hub server.  This has been on the drawing boards ever since 2007 was released, but something always seemed to come up.  Things are looking much better to get this deployed soon, and with SP1 not too far off, the timing probably worked out well. 

Vista, on the other hand, has been pushed onto the back burner.  With many of our students coming to school this fall with Vista on their recently purchased laptops, we had hoped to get it installed in our labs and classrooms.  We’re at the point now where all of our commercial software is Vista-friendly, but we still have several internally developed apps that need some more work before we can move our staff to Vista.  So we’re going to wait and selectively distribute it, and wait until winter break perhaps before we take the plunge.