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Zimbra Upgrade Complains About Hosts File

When upgrading Zimbra, one of the first things it does is check your hosts file for two entries. It needs a valid localhost entry (the mysql setup is sensitive about this) and it needs a valid host FQDN entry for the server itself.

It wants to see something like this:

192.168.12.5   mail.xxxxxxxxxxx.com mail
127.0.0.1      localhost.localdomain localhost

The upgrade script kept complaining that my hosts file was incorrect, but those two entries where there and they looked fine.

Here's the error (sic):

 ERROR: Installation can not proceeed.
  Please fix your /etc/hosts file

So...

Windows Server 2008 Shutdown with a 0x500ff Reason Code

I had a client that had a new Windows Server 2008 R2 server shutdown spontaneously.

In reviewing the logs, I saw where the system went into shutdown, but I couldn't tell why. All I had to go on was a 0x500ff reason code.

Resources I found to help diagnosis this issue included:

Systems Shutting Down with 0x500ff:
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2001061

Shutdown codes:
http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa376885(VS.85).aspx

None of these were really helpful, though, because the problem was kind of my fault. You see, we had installed the server, but it wasn't in its final secured location. It was sitting in an empty office. An empty unlocked office.

When some kids came in to the facility to hang out and wanted to use a computer, they tried a few times to log in, couldn't, and powered the server down, since it wasn't "working".

Oops. Looks like I have to get the server physically secured sooner, rather than later.

Annoying Virtual CD Showing Up When Connecting a Western Digital My Passport/My Book External Drive?

If you've purchased an external drive lately, Western Digital has been "helpful" by taking up .5 gb of space on your drive with their software. I really dislike the software as it just doesn't back things up the way I want to do it. I have Carbonite for offline backup, I just want to be able to image my system so that I can, theoretically anyway, recover more quickly if I have a hard drive failure.

I don't want a snail's paced backup of the files WD thinks I want. I want an IMAGE!

So, I wanted to get rid of the fake CD that keeps showing up and using up one of my drive letters...

Renamed Windows Server 2008 r2 Can't See RDP (Terminal Server) License Server

RDP License Issue

So I setup a new server for a client and somehow named the server with the Dell standard naming convention of D followed by the Service Tag. This is what I use for workstations, but not such a good idea for a server as I like to have what they do be part of the name. Often something clever like SERVER1.

Anyway, I had already configured my RDP licenses and set that all up under the old name, so I knew my licensing was all set. I renamed the server without a problem, but then I kept getting notified that I only had x days and my RDP licenses would stop working.

This is the problem with installing Windows Server stuff when you are provided with a friendly Wizard that steps you through everything. All the critical stuff gets set for you, but heaven help you when you want to find the place to change it...

Netbook's Screen Too Small to Install Office 2007 Compatibility Pack

A lot of netbooks are fast enough to run Office 2003 without a problem, but if you are installing Office 2003 with the Office 2007 Compatibility Pack, the "Microsoft Software License Terms" will show up and be too big to be able to see the form elements you need to click on to be able to continue...

Bug in Acronis Backup & Restore 10 Fails at 99% Completed Restore

I think I've found a bug in the Acronis restore system. My problem was that whenever I tried to restore a TIB file (image of my Dell D620 laptop), Acronis restore would get to 99% and fail. Repeatedly. Like 5 times. Each attempt taking almost 2 hours. Man, that's frustrating.

When I was doing the autopsy and checking out what was wrong, the logs reported errors on the drive, but only at the last second when the volume was getting finished up.

I also noticed that the size of the FAT16 volume created for the Dell utilities and the NTFS volume created for Windows was slightly different from my live system. Both drives were 320GB 2.5" SATA drives, but the attempted restored volumes where different.

For instance, my FAT16 on my original drive was 376MB and the FAT16 on my failed image drive was 384MB. The size of my original NTFS volume was 297.72 and the size of my failed volume was 297.71.

Update: Zimbra Web Client Doesn't Download Compressed Javascript

This issue has an updated article.

Well, not to speak too soon, but I may have finally worked out the issue with Zimbra and my client trying to use the advanced client. As outlined before, we've had some ongoing problems with the javascript failing to load and the advanced interface being useless.

So...

Does the Cloud Matter?

I was asked the question,

What do think about "Cloud Computing"? Do you think it is the future for computing?

The answer is "yes". But, it will take a while before it gets really pervasive, and it won't ever be 100% of computing...

Zimbra Web Client Doesn't Download Compressed Javascript

This issue has an updated article.

I have a client using Zimbra that was having problems with the web client failing to start. It would get the the Zimbra logo screen, but not finish downloading everything.

The problem didn't occur everywhere. For instance, on the systems on the same LAN as the server, it worked fine. On some remote systems it worked fine. On the computers at his house, however, it wouldn't load. Only the "lite" HTML client would work.

We flushed the cache on the clients, but it didn't help. We checked for viruses and that didn't help. We called the cable company (ISP) and that helped a little, but still no joy.

We changed the MTU on the router: no help.

We upgraded to the latest 5.x version and still no joy.

The strange thing was, if we brought the system into the office, it worked.

I know Zimbra does some pretty elaborate caching and uses compressed javascript files, so I was pretty sure it had something to do with that...

Zimbra Failing to Re-index a Mailbox

I was getting a fatal error affecting a Zimbra server running 5.0.2. A user with a large mailbox (10gb, 38000 messages) was having problems, so the first thing I wanted to do was re-index their mailbox. This can fix a multitude of sins, but it can also take awhile and it is a very bad thing to cancel.

Anyway, I tried to re-index the mailbox and it would process for awhile and get to about message 2724, then all of a sudden it would start failing to index certain messages, then really crap out. Then it would actually take the Zimbra server down and I would have to restart it each time!

It seemed to be message specific in that mailbox (failed at the same point each time), so I rooted around in the /opt/zimbra/log folder and checked out the logs. I found the message number that it was stopping on, then found it in the message store for the user and renamed it. (The message number in the log is the prefix for the msg file that is stored in the user's store in /opt/zimbra/store/0/##/
where ## is the user's internal number.)

That allowed the reindexing to get past that message, but then it died just a little later.

After a lot of research and turning the problem upside down, I finally figured some things out...

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