Reminder – GLUGnet meeting – Thursday July 20th….Win a 19" flat panel monitor.

I’m thinking, should I add this to my blog considering not too many people are in the Great Lakes region!.  If you happen to be in this part of the country / world stop by our User group meeting Thursday July 20th from 6 PM to 8 PM in Lansing MI.  Joe Stagner from Microsoft will be presenting on AJAX, Atlas and Web 2.0.  You can get a chance to win a 19" flat panel monitor.  Here is more info and a link to our user group site.

Room 2250 in Engineering Building, MSU.  6-8PM  (Parking is free in the Planetarium lot starting at 6pm)

The evolution of the Web Application User Experience with Microsoft Atlas

Web 2.0 & AJAX are  the buzzwords of the next generation of web development. This session will provide a look into Microsoft’s new Web Development technology "Atlas". Atlas combines rich, cross browser client side libraries with ASP.NET’s  popular server side development technology to offer an ideal  developer’s toolbox for developing the next generation of Web Applications.

Speaker: – Joe Stagner is a Program Manager in Microsoft Corporation’s Developer Tools and Platform Group and has been with Microsoft since 2001 focusing on highly scalable and performant web application architectures, multiplatform interoperability and software security.  Joe brings 30 years technical and business strategy experience to Microsoft which affords him a unique experiential perspective.

Sponsor: GLUGnet.                 
Prizes: Dell 19inch LCD monitor, books, and other cool swag will be given out for our July meeting. 

Heads Up!  Our meeting in July will feature a drawing for a brand new Dell 19inch LCD monitor.    Bring a new attendee to receive an additional entry for this awesome prize!

Cool post about…!

Steve Smith ( recently blogged about his hosting experience with us (  Here is the link to the post. It is a bit of a shame-less post too, I am mentioned for being an ‘ubergeek’, which I am.  [:)]   Thanks Steve for the nice comments!  If you need a great ASP/ASP.Net resource, is a great site to bookmark. 

Troubleshooting process

This post hopefully will provide a few initial steps to get started finding out what is wrong when your app "isn’t working as expected".  I’ve been hanging out in the newsgroups lately and it kind of surprised me the same thing about trying to find out "whats wrong".  Sometimes getting started is the hardest part.  Here is a list of tools and sites I use to begin the "troubleshooting process".  The assumption I am making you are in a position of writing code or a systems administrator charged with trying to solve the problem. (Whatever that maybe)

1) – First thing to do, look in any log files available – (Event logs,  IIS Logs, SQL Logs, or custom log files from the application. ) Run utilities from Sysinternals (Filemon + Regmon), use these tools to collect evidence when the problem happens.  Here is some links for further info.

‘Windows Event Logs (Application, Security, System)
Look in the event logs to see if any errors are present.  collect the Event ID, Source and any messages.

*Windows Auditing settings* – This goes with looking in the event logs.  Make sure some type of auditing is on so errors are logged.

‘Filemon – Review files in real time to find out what is being accessed and if any ‘access denied’ messages occur.  Run Filemon when the error is happening and save the log file, review for problems.

‘Regmon – Review the registry in real time to find out what is being accessed and if any keys are getting ‘access denied’ messages. Run Regmon when the error is happening and save the log file, review for problems.

‘Process Explorer – view what processes are in-use along with DLLS’s and much more.

‘Open a command prompt and run ‘gpresult’.  This will show you what ‘machine’ and ‘user’ polices are being applied. This mainly applies when your machine is in an Active Directory environment.  If your machine is a stand-along box.  Review the ‘local security policy’.

2) After you have collected a list of errors, various messages and event ids.  Use these sites to look for answers or links to articles about your issue. I wager a good portion of the time you’ll find the solution or an article about your issue.

3) I *strongly* recommend watch this webcast by Mark Russinovich.  (Thanks to Scott Forsyth from  (blog is here – ) for pointing this out.  Mark is the co-founder of Sysinternals and could make a case for him being the #1 guru on the Internet.  This was recorded at Teched 2006.  Without the tools he has provided, it would make every Windows Administrator’s job a lot harder.

Advanced tools to examine dump files.

‘WinDBG and windows debugging tools

‘IIS Diagnostics Toolkit

‘IIS Crash/Hang Agent and IIS Dump

Yes, I even list notepad as an advanced troubleshooting tool.  You need a text editor to view the log files.   It is not VI but it’ll do.

‘Document that explains Windows Internals and troubleshooting. 109 pages great info

MISC: These are articles and links I found useful for various specifc tasks and products.  If you have one, let me know.  ?

Active Directory – Turn on AD logging to find out what machine or process is locking out users.

SQL Profiler – Are you having a problem with your SQL queries? See your queries in action and how long they are taking to execute.

Network Monitor – I use this a lot when debugging. 


How to use Network Monitor to capture network traffic;en-us;812953

ISA Server 2000 / 2004

Exchange 2000 / 2003

DNS Related issues

Check VB6 DLL for "Retained in memory" and "Unattended Execution" settings.

SMS 2003 issues

Hope this helps.

IIS Resources

I have found several good resources for IIS.   I’ve recently been spending more time in the newsgroups.  This is a real gem to learn about all kinds of different IIS and related issues.

Of course ( IIS7 related materials )