Microsoft

Get the Start Menu back

If like me you have ignored the cries of frustration from others about how Windows 8 or 8.1 have stolen the Start Menu then fear not as there are several solutions kindly provided by great people. Below are a couple of links that are by no means exhaustive but will give you an idea of how to claw your functionality back. If you choose to install any third party softare, please ensure you read the instructions and don’t install anything you don’t want to.

Start Menu 8 – http://www.iobit.com/iobitstartmenu8.php

Classic Shell – http://www.classicshell.net/

Skypes little known in chat commands

If  found myself needing to give admin rights to everyone in my skype chat group but couldn’t find anything to support it in the GUI, then I descovered the Skype commands buried in their website. Below are some key entries, all of which are entered in the chat bar;

  • /kick [Skype Name] – removes the user from the group, they can later be added
  • /setrole [Skype Name] MASTER – sets the user stipulated as an aditional admin
  • /showmembers – displays a list of members and their role
  • /info – shows number of people in the chat and maximum number available

For more detailed information visit https://support.skype.com/en/faq/FA10042/what-are-chat-commands-and-roles?

Small Business Server 2011 – Installing

Insert the CD and power on the server, ensuring that it is set to boot from CD/DVD. Allow the software to run and continue until you are presented with an “Install Windows” dialogue box, select your language settings (in my case English UK) and ensure it is correct for your keyboard before clicking Next. Another screen should now ask if you want to Install or repair, click  Install Now. Setup will then present the license terms and ask you to confirm by ticking the accept box and then clicking Next. The next stage of installation is to choose whether to upgrade or custom, in this case it is custom as it is a fresh install, you will then be asked about what disk to use, no change should be necessary so click Next. Windows will then run through its own checklist, your system specs will decide how long this takes.

Now SBS 2011 needs to be configured and asks if it should be part of a migration or clean install, in this case tick Clean Install and click Next. Provided your hardware meets the minimum standards, if however there is an issue it will tell you what needs to be resolved. Verify the time and click Next, at this point you need to choose whether to automatically detect network settings or set them manually, in this case I shall set automatic and click Next. Now select your update method, I will select the recommended setting of keep uptodate.

Following a brief process you will then be asked to enter your company details before clicking Next. Then your chosen server name and the internal domain name need to be set, bear in mind that you will not be able to change this once committed, click Next. After a short time you will be asked to enter your administrators details, note the account “Administrator” is already a provisioned account and cannot be used, click Next. A summary screen will then be presented and a final warning that domain details cannot be altered, if you are happy with what is stated click Next. Configuration will take quite some time but will eventually present a “Installation Finished” window, where any errors will then also be displayed, if there are any just click to view them and try and resolve them as you see them.

SBS 2011 is now installed, though will need some configuring to bring it up to scratch. You are now presented with the standard console where the configuration can be manipulated to fit your needs.