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IIS 8 Hosting - 3 Huge Improvements in IIS 8

clock January 21, 2013 08:20 by author andy_yo

Internet Information Services (IIS) 8 includes many new and improved features that make moving to Windows Server 2012 compelling for organizations that rely on Windows Servers as their web server. For developers and system administrators that are looking to mirror that IIS environment on their workstation for development or testing, IIS 8 gives another reason to move your workstation to Windows 8.

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Improvement 1: Centralized SSL Certificate Management

With IIS on Windows 8 or Windows Server 2012, you can take advantage of the SSL certificate management console. This is a central management console that is able to install certificates and work with certificates across all IIS 8 web servers.

This includes the ability to more rapidly bring new servers online by being able to import all certificates that are needed. If a certificate needs to be renewed on multiple systems, it can be done through the IIS 8 certificate management console. You no longer have to log onto each system to update the certificate.

 

Note: Centralized SSL Certificate management is installed as a separate feature. You can install IIS without Centralized SSL Certificate Support. Centralized SSL Certificate Support is in the security section of “Windows Features.”

Improvement 2: Application Initialization

One frustrating problem that many web server admins face is the problem of slow-responding sites as web applications are initializing. A common workaround is to use tools and scripts to “cold start” the applications early in the morning so that the sites are ready to perform: The in-memory cache is loaded, and in some cases the content must be generated, before the IIS server is ready to respond to HTTP requests.

With IIS 8, Application Initialization lets you establish rules for “warming up” sites. For example, you can have larger applications begin the initialization process earlier than smaller applications. You can also configure through application initialization a new splash screen to be displayed in case people find themselves waiting while the application is initializing.

I can see a much better user experience by logging onto a SharePoint site early in the morning and having the first page displayed being a simple “Please wait while this application is being prepared for use” splash screen instead of just a blank page and a spinning circle.

Improvement 3: Dynamic IP Address Restrictions

Restricting access to a website by its IP address is nothing new -- admins have long been able to do that. You can even restrict by a block of IPs in an address range.

The problem that persists is tracking down all of the IP addresses to block. This would usually take a long time of parsing through logs, and even if going through the logs and filtering out the IP addressed were scripted, it is done in a reactive manner.

Instead, using the Dynamic IP Address Restrictions feature in IIS 8 for Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012, you can specify on a per web application level the maximum number of connections that an IP address can create within a certain time frame. And you can also specify the maximum number of attempts that can be made into the IIS 8 server from an IP address within a specific time. Any attempts beyond what is allowed are automatically filtered out, making your web applications and your web server much more resistant to malicious activity.

Dynamic IP Address Restrictions is added as an additional feature of IIS that is not installed by default. To install the feature, open Windows Features, then place a check in the box to select Web Server (IIS) -> Web Server -> Security -> IP and Domain Restrictions. After all that, click Finish.



Windows Server 2012 Hosting - Top 10 Windows Server 2012 Features

clock January 17, 2013 10:26 by author andy_yo

Many IT professionals and system administrators are evaluating the software for deployment Windows Server 2012 since it has been officially available in September 9th, 2012. Here are the top 10 features that we think noteworthy new (or improved) features in Windows Server 2012.

About ASPHostPortal.com

ASPHostPortal.com is Microsoft No #1 Recommended Windows and ASP.NET Spotlight Hosting Partner in United States. Microsoft presents this award to ASPHostPortal.com for ability to support the latest Microsoft and ASP.NET technology, such as: WebMatrix, WebDeploy, Visual Studio 2012, ASP.NET 4.5, ASP.NET MVC 4.0, Silverlight 5 and Visual Studio Lightswitch. Click here for more information

Top 10 Windows Server 2012 Features

1. Data Deduplication

One of the constants of technology and the IT industry is that data storage demands and requirements are increasing exponentially. From ballooning email inboxes to file shares overflowing with documents, just about every enterprise has a need for more efficient. That’s where the new data deduplication features in Windows Server 2012 come in handy.

It works like this: Say you have a large number of VHD (virtual hard disk) files that you need to move. Each of those VHDs has a lot of duplicate (yet identical) files and applications, like minesweeper, Windows calculator, and other accessory applications. Data deduplication removes all of the copies of those applications from those VHDs but one. It then records the redundant data in a separate location in System Volume Information (SVI) and points to the files that serves as the source template. This can free up tremendous amounts of space, especially when applied across thousands of files across your network. Data deduplication works across different computer networks and also across Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012 machines. If you have lots of files and data to store and not enough space – and who doesn’t – this could be the killer feature.

2. GUI-less install options

There are plenty of times when you only want to install only the absolute minimum files and assets you need to run Windows Server, and Windows Server 2012 now includes a default installation option to install the GUI-less server core. You can also now install Windows Server 2012 with a minimal user interface, which means that you have even more ways than ever to install just the Windows Server files you need. This reduces disk space, saves on administration effort, and reduces your attack surface from hackers and other digital malcontents by restricting installed files to the absolute minimum.

3. Hyper-V 3.0

Windows Server 2012 is loaded with new features, but perhaps the feature that has gone through the most radical improvement is the Hyper-V virtualization feature set. Tired of playing catch-up to VMware on the feature front, Microsoft has loaded Hyper-V with an impressive list of improvements. Some of the highlights include support for up to 64 processors and 1TB of RAM per virtual machine, as well as support for up to 320 logical hardware processors and 4TB of RAM per host. VMware vSphere 5.1 evens the playing field in some areas, but the message is clear: Microsoft is doing everything it can to unseat VMware as the virtualization platform of choice in the enterprise.

4. IP Address Management (IPAM)

One of the biggest headaches for many IT professionals is keeping tabs on IP addresses used on their corporate networks. In a bid to end the time-honored practice of storing IP addresses in Excel spreadsheets, IPAM is a new feature in Windows Server 2012 that provides a new internal framework for locating and managing IP address spaces on networks. You can also manage and monitor servers running Domain Name Service (DNS) and Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP). It also does automatic IP discovery and provides a host of other IP-related tasks focused on management, monitoring, and auditing.

5. Network virtualization changes

One of the more problematic aspects of virtual machine management and provision is dealing with the rules and limitations of IP address management. Microsoft is making a raft of improvements to network virtualization in Windows Server 2012, all aimed at tackling problems related to IP addresses and virtual machines. This helps pave the way for private cloud adoption, and also removes barriers for more infrastructure as a service (IaaS) adoption easier for internal IT stakeholders and hosting customers to implement.

6. ReFS

The venerable NTFS file system format has been used for more than a decade by Microsoft. Recent demands from virtualization and private cloud computing have pushed NTFS as far as it could go, so Microsoft decided to add new features and revamp existing ones to NTFS. The result is an upgrade to NTFS dubbed Re-FS for resilient file system.

Re-FS adds a bumper crop of new storage features and improvements, with some of the highlights being increased support for larger file and directory sizes, disk scrubbing, data striping for improved performance, enhanced virtualization support, and it takes advantages of all the new storage pool and spaces features in Windows Server 2012.

7. Shared nothing live migration

One of the more impressive new features of Hyper-V 3.0 is shared nothing live migration, which allows you to move VMs from one machine to another without the requirement of having shared storage before making the transfer. This feature can be a boon for smaller IT departments, and it makes it easy to move VMs around without expensive share storage. It one of the most impressive features in Windows Server 2012, and it will help small- to mid-size IT departments become even more agile and responsive to business and customer needs.

8. Storage pools and spaces

Most IT departments have to contend with a dizzying assortment of storage hardware and medium types, from leading-edge SSD drives and spinning disks to removable drives and legacy magnetic reel tape. Making effective use of all those disparate storage formats can sometimes be a Herculean task, especially when you throw in the ever-increasing storage demands that today’s workplaces place on IT departments. Microsoft is hoping to help admins address that by introducing Storage Pools and Spaces, two storage abstractions concepts being introduced in Windows Server 2012.

Storage Pools aggregate these heterogeneous physical storage devices into cohesive units where it’s relatively easy to add storage capacity by adding additional storage. As mentioned previously, the devices in storage pools don’t have to be homogenous from the perspective of either device or storage size; you can mix and match devices and sizes here.

Storage Spaces takes that concept even further by allowing you to create virtual disks that have the same characteristics as physical devices: they can be attached, removed, backed up, and otherwise managed exactly the same as traditional physical disks. But Spaces have even more useful features and capabilities, including enhanced capabilities when combined with virtualization and private cloud solutions. They also have additional capabilities on the backup, recovery, and high-availability front, and improvement in the realm of thin provisioning as well.

9. PowerShell 3.0

PowerShell has been steadily gaining in popularity over the last few years, and Microsoft pulled out all the stops for PowerShell support in Windows Server 2012. More than 2000 PowerShell cmdlets are now included, and the newly enhanced stable of commands allows IT professionals to automate and control more aspects of their Windows Server 2012 environment through the PowerShell command line that ever before. This latest update to PowerShell also included improved web access, the ability to schedule jobs, support for disconnected sessions, enhanced and editable help files, and dozens of other new features.

10. CHKDSK changes

Everyone reading this is probably already intimately familiar with the ubiquitous CHKDSK application, which has been in use in various forms since MS-DOS 1.0. We’ve all stepped out for a cup of coffee when the dreaded CHKDSK disk scan kicks off on a server or client equipped with large disk storage.

Microsoft has responded to this productivity killer by revamping CHKDSK in Windows Server 2012. Rather than spending vast amounts of time laboriously scanning through sectors on large disks, the new and improved CHKDSK now scans disks in two phases: An online phase that detects errors and logs defects (and which also can run in the background), and an actual repair phase that does the actual fixing of corrupted drive data.



ASPHostPortal.com Announces Newest Service Windows Server 2012 Hosting

clock October 10, 2012 07:26 by author Jervis

ASPHostPortal is a premiere web hosting company that specialized in Windows and ASP.NET-based hosting, proudly announces new Microsoft product, Windows Server 2012 hosting to all new and existing customers. The newly released server operating system offers a number of features that can be utilized to benefit developers, resellers and businesses.

Windows Server 2012 offers new and improved features which enable multi-user infrastructure where storage resources, networking and compute are completely remote from other users. There are a number of key features that customers will find useful, including support for asp.net 4.5, Internet Information Services 8.0 (IIS), compatibility with Visual Studio 2012, Visual Studio Express 2012, support for ASP.NET MVC 4, and Entity Framework 5. Other key new features include dynamic IP restriction to help prevent DoS attacks, support WebSockets and node.js, and also CPU Throttling to ensure isolated each client's server usage and Application Initialization to improve user experience of first requests.

“We have always had a great appreciation for the products that Microsoft Offers. With the launched of Windows Server 2012 hosting services, entrepreneurs and organization will be able to build their impressive website to be on the top of the competition.” Said Dean Thomas, Manager at ASPHostPortal. “Within Windows Server 2012 hosting packages, users will have the ability to use Hyper-V in assorted configurations, improved isolation and security, fortified access controls to files and processes and the capability of managing servers as a group.”

ASPHostPortal is one of the Microsoft recommended hosting partner that provide most stable and reliable web hosting platform. With the new launch of Windows Server 2012 into its feature, it will continue to keep ASPHostPortal as one of the front runners in the web hosting market. For more information about new Windows Server 2012 hosting, please visit http://www.asphostportal.com.

About ASPHostPortal.com:

ASPHostPortal.com is a hosting company that best support in Windows and ASP.NET-based hosting. Services include shared hosting, reseller hosting, and sharepoint hosting, with specialty in ASP.NET, SQL Server, and architecting highly scalable solutions. As a leading small to mid-sized business web hosting provider, ASPHostPortal strive to offer the most technologically advanced hosting solutions available to all customers across the world. Security, reliability, and performance are at the core of hosting operations to ensure each site and/or application hosted is highly secured and performs at optimum level.



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