Sunday, August 31, 2014

Someone Very Wise...

Someone very wise has said on many occasions about many things the following:
"Dont just float along.  Be intentional."

By God's design, you have a purpose for existing.  Let God show you, and be intentional with your life.

Jeremiah 29:11New International Version (NIV)

11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Friday, August 29, 2014

A Little ShoreTel Arrogance

I don't know, but the thing is that I was not trying to bookmark anything here.  I was simply trying to click on one of the support documents to download it (notice in the url the 'attachment').  This just spells out an arrogance that I guess I just don't care for.  Thanks ShoreTel.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

VMWare: A Burning Question

Why would you do a VM setup without multiple hosts?  That is a question that I wonder every time I see that in an environment. I'm just not sure I see any real advantage to a single host with VMs running with no redundancy. Seems careless that you would "put all your eggs in one basket", so to speak.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

ShoreTel: When NTP Doesnt Work For Your Phones

On an install I did not long ago, one of the problems I ran into was trying to get NTP to work.  As it turned out, NTP was not started on the server (2012).  It was set to manual for some reason, so I had to go in and modify that service in Windows.  See below.  Make sure you have it set to automatic.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014


Definitely been hot here in Alabama. This was a couple of days ago.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Cisco 3750G Switch: How To Delete The Vlan Database

I was asked by a customer to take a Cisco 3750G and delete out the config and vlan information so that they could repurpose the switch for another area in the network.  Even though I have done this a lot, I realized that there are a lot of people out there who dont know how to delete the vlan database out.  And, to go with that, I have actually seen some Cisco documentation that is incorrect.  Here is what you have to do to get this vlan data deleted off the switch:
First, I deleted my config information.
Switch#write erase
Erasing the nvram filesystem will remove all configuration files! Continue? [con
Erase of nvram: complete

Next, I delete the vlan information that was recieved from VTP.
Switch#delete flash:/vlan.dat
Delete filename [vlan.dat]?
Delete flash:/vlan.dat? [confirm]

Switch#dir flash:/
Directory of flash:/

    3  -rwx    13006601  Mar 22 2012 16:09:48 +00:00  c3750-ipservicesk9-mz.122-
    4  -rwx        1048   Mar 1 1993 00:08:14 +00:00  multiple-fs
    6  -rwx       10570  Dec 14 2012 06:19:17 +00:00  config.old

32514048 bytes total (19493888 bytes free)

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Theistic Evolution?: Paul (Saul) Disagrees

Believe in theistic evolution? You believe that God actually used evolution to get to where we are?  Think again. Paul didn't believe that, since in Acts 17:24-26 he clearly states something different.
Paul seems to believe that God made everything. He also believed that God is the one who gives life.  He also seems to believe that all men came from one man (from Adam, not the primordial gue, or aliens, etc).  I don't see where theistic evolution fits in Paul's model.  He specifically says that from one man, God made all nations.  Not from something other than man.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Auto Attendants: Dampening "PAA"s And "SSSS" In Recordings

Ever hear those sounds in an auto attendant, like it sounds like they are blowing in your ear or hissing at you like a snake?  Here is the cheap man's way to how I dampened these two sounds when you are recording. Kleanex over the mic.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Dell SonicWall CSSA Class

A couple of days ago, I found myself in a CSSA Dell SonicWall firewall class. I did not particularly want to go to this class, but I think I have decided that now I am at least glad to get a first hand look, formally, at this product.
The instructor was really good. His name was Ryan and he was a GlobalKnowledge employee. He really knew the product well and presented it in a knowledgeable fashion.
I have to say that I am not particularly impressed with this product, in comparison to other firewall players. I do have some experience in the past with SonicWall firewalls.  I won't go into all the things I do and don't like about this product, but I will say that there are some niche places I could see this in.
With that said, I took the CSSA test a day after the class.  The info was fresh in my mind and it is an open book test.  I had my student guide and the SonicWall you see below in front of me while I took the test.  Everything I needed for the test was there in front of me.  I did pass the CSSA test.  I think if you have a firewall background of some sort, you will probably do fine.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Senior Everything...

Have you ever noticed that every IT person on LinkedIn is a 'senior' something, VP of something, or "executive" something something? I find this a lot in consulting, that people exaggerate their experiences and job roles, only to find out they don't really know as much as they claimed and end up failing at the new job role.  Don't do that to yourself.
Be honest and up front with your experiences and skills. They will eventually find out about you and then you have a bad reputation, along with potentially getting canned. Keep it real. I know that within the first two weeks of a new employee coming in, I can tell if they are what they proclaimed to be. I can also tell if they are going to make it in consulting or not. Just be you, and the rest will follow.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Sunday Thought: Bruce Marchiano

If your are not a Christian, give yourself 6 minutes to listen to the link below. It's all free, and I really like this guy.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Friday, August 15, 2014

Cisco Voice: MGCP Connection Down To Your CUCM From Voice Gateway

I had a customer call me up and tell me that one of his remote sites could not call out local calls.  They wanted all long distance calls going out the HQ site and all local calls going out the remote site (appropriately).  I set this system up a long time ago, so I had to refresh myself on their config.  I found that MGCP was not communicating with the one remote site gateway.  All other remote sites were OK.  So here is what I did to verify, in this case.
I went on the voice gateway (which is just a Cisco router) and did a "show mgcp connection" after trying to make a test call.  It showed nothing.
CLEVELAND#sh mgcp con

CLEVELAND#sh mgcp con

You see above, that I run this command twice.  Nothing.
So I went into the CUCM and reset that particular gateway (not reboot the router, reset IN CUCM).  I waited a few minutes and ran the command again after making a test call.  Below is what I got:

CLEVELAND#sh mgcp conn
Endpoint        Call_ID(C) Conn_ID(I) (P)ort (M)ode (S)tate (CO)dec (E)vent[SIFL                                                                                        ] (R)esult[EA] (ME)dia
1. S0/SU0/DS1-0/23      C=D000000002ca11bf000000F50000000b,25506,25507  I=0x31C6                                                                                          P=17248,18474  M=3  S=4,4 CO=1 E=2,0,0,2  R=0,0  ME=0


State : 0=IDLE, 1=SETTING, 2=CONNECTING, 3=CONFERENCING, 4=ACTIVE, 5=CONF_DESTRO                                                                                        YING,
6=DISCONNECTING, 7=INACTIVE, 8=VOICE_CONNECTING, 9=VOICE_ACTIVE, 10=CONF_DISSOCI                                                                                        ATING,

Codec : 1=PCMU, 2=PCMA, 3=G726_32K, 4=G726_24K, 5=G726_16K, 6=G729, 7=G729_A, 8=                                                                                        G729_B, 9=G729_B_LC,
10=G728, 11=G723, 12=G7231_HIGH_RATE, 13=G7231_A_HIGH_RATE, 14=G7231_LOW_RATE,
15=G7231_A_LOW_RATE, 16=GSM_FR, 17=GSM_HR, 18=GSM_EFR, 19=GSM_EHR, 20=G729_A_B
128=CLEAR_CHANNEL, 129=NSE, 130=XNSE, 131=NTE, 132=T38, 133=MODEM_RELAY


Problem solved by resetting the MGCP gateway in CUCM.  

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Cisco Wireless: "Unable To Add Any License Without An BASE License" - Adding An NCS License File

Just a heads up.  If you are using Cisco Prime, and need to relicense NCS to 1.3.  This customer had a 1.1 Base.  If you want to go to 1.2, you are fine.  If you want to go to 1.3, you have to upgrade the Base license.  It doesn't cost you anything, you just have to get TAC to relicense for you.  Create a case, get it done.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Brocade Switch: How To Tell How Much Time Is Left On A Trial License (ICX)

I have an ICX6610 stack that I need to put a premium license on.  But first, I need to know how much time I have left on the temp license.  You know in services, it gets busy sometimes, so sometimes you need just a little more time to do things.  So login to the ICX and lets see how to get this info:

telnet@6610#sh license unit 1 index 1
License information for unit 1 license <1>:
        +license name:        ICX6610-PREM-LIC-SW
        +lid:                 xxxxxxxxx
        +license type:        trial
        +status:              active
        +license period:      45 days
Trial license information:
        +days used:          22
        +hours used:         1
        +days left:          22
        +hours left:         23
telnet@6610#sh license unit 2 index 1
License information for unit 2 license <1>:
        +license name:        ICX6610-PREM-LIC-SW
        +lid:                 xxxxxxxxx
        +license type:        Trial
        +status:              Active
        +license period:      45 days
Trial license information:
        +days used:          22
        +hours used:         1
        +days left:          22
        +hours left:         23

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Difference Between A Boss And A Leader

There is truth to the image below.  If you are a boss, its time that you become a leader.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Brocade Switch: Port Identification On A Stacked ICX6450 Pair

If the below were two stacked ICX6450s, these would be the port number identifications:

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Who Do You Believe?

I think this link below nails it.  The world will throw anything it can at you to make you doubt. Who will you believe? The Creator or the created? I chose the Creator.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Loops In The Network, And The Havoc They Cause

This is what happens when you have a loop in the network.  This server is directly connected to the switch.  Just FYI, a loop in the network can completely bring down your network.  Normally, this server pings without problem.  CPU utilization on core switch is 99%.  This below is what happens:

Sending 1, 16-byte ICMP Echo to, timeout 5000 msec, TTL 64
Type Control-c to abort
Request timed out.
No reply from remote host.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

ShoreTel Upgrade: Step-By-Step From Version 12.2 To 14.2/From Windows OS Version 2003 To 2012

I went through an upgrade from ShoreTel 12.2 to 14.2, directly.  However, I was changing hardware and also going to HyperV.  The customer wanted to make the move, even though I was not thrilled about it since this was the first version supported for HyperV.  I always say wait until the next version to work out the bugs, really in anything.  Just personal preference.  Below was my experience and the steps I took.  I hope its helpful.  Keep in mind, if I recall correctly, 12.2 is the lowest version you can go directly to 14.2 from.  If you have 12.1, you have to go to 12.2 first.

Contacted shoretel TAC to get 12.2 software (not available for general download)

NOTE*** If DHCP is on your 2003 box, you will need to move that to your 2012 box.

1. Double-click the script that stops all ShoreTel services - D:\Program Files\Shoreline Communications\ShoreWareServer\Scripts\hq_shoretel-stop-svcs.bat on the 2003 server.
2. Copy "shoreline data" folder to another location (copied backup over network to temp 2008 server)
3. disable NIC on voice vlan (its dual-homed).  Also, power it down, as you dont want it on the network when you put the new 2012 server in place.
4. Install 14.2 on new server (2012 server) (Just doing this while waiting on download of 12.2 from FTP server from ShoreTel)  Make sure you name it the same as the 2003 server.
5. install Shoretel 12.2 on 2008 box. (Just FYI, I had to install the OS on a PC.  The customer didnt have a 2008 server for me to use, so we had to install this on an old PC just as a stepping stone).
6.  Change name on 2008 server and IP address to match the 2003 box.  (I took off network for this)
7.  Turn Windows firewall off.  It wont install with this on.
8.  Install Roles on 2008 server.(Check the Application Server and Web Server (IIS) check boxes and select all relevant features listed: p190 in 14.2 install guide:
9.  As I install the Shoretel software, it wants to Install visual C++ on 2008 server.
10.  Reboot.
11.  Run \Program Files\Shoreline Communications\ShoreWareServer\Scripts\hq_shoretel-stop-svcs.bat on the 2008 server.
12. verify all shoretel services did actually stop.
13. Rename the Shoreline Data folder and Copy the original 2003 Shoreline Data folder into place.
14. start shoretel services again on 2008 box. (Run \Program Files\Shoreline Communications\ShoreWareServer\Scripts\hq_shoretel-start-svcs.bat)
15.  Verify they are all started.
16.  Copy 14.2 software onto 2008 server.
17.  Extract and run 14.2 install of Shoretel software.
18.  reboot when install is complete.
19.  Login and verify install version.
20.  Stop shoretel services on 2008 server with hq bat file.
21.  Backup shoreline data folder again, so that we can import into the 2012 server.
22.  Copy Shoreline Data folder to the new 2012 server.
23.  install shoretel 14.2 software just like you did on the 2008 server, including roles and features needed, and other preinstall items located in the install manual.
24.  When install is complete, reboot.
25.  Login and stop all ShoreTel services with the hq stop bat file.
26.  Copy the shoreline data folder into the new 2012 server, replacing the shoreline data folder from the new install.
27.  Start ShoreTel services after the copy is complete.
28.  This is a HyperV environment for this install, so make sure the mac address on the virtual NIC is the same was the 2003 server it came from, if you plan on decommissioning the 2003 server (or disabling that NIC).  If this is going on a new server with a different MAC address, then you will have to relicense the server with the new MAC address. (NOTE*** I did have to relicense even though it used the same MAC address.  Not sure why.  Didn't care, just relicensed and completed project.

Below is the 2008 stepping stone I used.  Just made me laugh.  One of my server engineers got me a thumb drive ready with a bootable 2008 copy.  Very nice of him to do for me.  Thanks Justin for doing that for me.  You can also see another senior engineer is working on a Palo Alto project.  

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Check Point/Palo Alto Evaluation License

Ok, when comparing Check Point and Palo Alto firewalls, one thing I do NOT like about Palo is that you can not do an evaluation without getting a temporary license for it.  You do NOT have to do this with Check Point.  You want to learn Check Point, you have 15 days to try it, then you can just reinstall it if that was not enough time.  You don't have to call anyone.  With Palo, that is not the case.  You cant just evaluate it yourself without Palo being involved.  I don't like that.  Maybe Palo will change that in the future.  Work with the Check Point all you like.  Thats a real shame on Palo.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Fiber Connectivity Problems: Check Each Strand With Light

I got a call from a customer that was having fiber problems between floors of a building the other day.  He was out of town and asked me to go take a look into it.  GBICs looked good when you looped them back on each side of the Brocades, so the problem had to be the fiber.  I got the director to shine his phone flashlight (which is a cool tool these days) through the fiber strands and this is what I found in the below picture.  So I rearranged to the good strands and all was working again.  Im not sure what happened before I got onsite, but I do know that they share a closet with another company.  Who knows, but Im glad they are back to good.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

"I Am A Christian" Poem...

For this Sunday, I found, on LinkedIn, this poem that someone shared. It's interesting to me. It's by Carol Wimmer. What do you think?


When I say, “I am a Christian”
I’m not shouting, “I’ve been saved!”
I’m whispering, “I get lost sometimes
That’s why I chose this way”
When I say, “I am a Christian”
I don’t speak with human pride
I’m confessing that I stumble -
needing God to be my guide
When I say, “I am a Christian”
I’m not trying to be strong
I’m professing that I’m weak
and pray for strength to carry on
When I say, “I am a Christian”
I’m not bragging of success
I’m admitting that I’ve failed
and cannot ever pay the debt
When I say, “I am a Christian”
I don’t think I know it all
I submit to my confusion
asking humbly to be taught
When I say, “I am a Christian”
I’m not claiming to be perfect
My flaws are far too visible
but God believes I’m worth it
When I say, “I am a Christian”
I still feel the sting of pain
I have my share of heartache
which is why I seek God’s name
When I say, “I am a Christian”
I do not wish to judge
I have no authority
I only know I’m loved
©1988 Carol Wimmer

 I think the first verses I probably disagree with. I'm very happy to be saved!

Friday, August 1, 2014

Cisco ASA: How To Test LDAP Integration And Successful Logins

Sometimes it helps me to test out authentication via LDAP into an AD environment when troubleshooting login problems.  Its really good that Cisco has allowed for this ON the ASA.  Its a good feature, and here is how you do it:

ASA(config)# test aaa-server authentication ad username shane.killen password p@$$w0rd
Server IP Address or name:
INFO: Attempting Authentication test to IP address <> (timeout: 10 seconds)
INFO: Authentication Successful