Agile Promise


The principles behind the Agile Manifesto documents well the initial promise the agile proponents were giving.

- Our highest priority is to satisfy the customer through early and continuous delivery of valuable software.

- Welcome changing requirements, even late in development. Agile processes harness change for the customer's competitive advantage.

- Deliver working software frequently, from a couple of weeks to a couple of months, with a preference to the shorter timescale.

- Business people and developers must work together daily throughout the project.

- Build projects around motivated individuals.

- Give them the environment and support they need, and trust them to get the job done.

- The most efficient and effective method of conveying information to and within a development team is face-to-face conversation.

- Working software is the primary measure of progress.

- Agile processes promote sustainable development. The sponsors, developers, and users should be able to maintain a constant pace indefinitely.

- Continuous attention to technical excellence and good design enhances agility.

- Simplicity--the art of maximizing the amount of work not done--is essential.

- The best architectures, requirements, and designs emerge from self-organizing teams.

- At regular intervals, the team reflects on how to become more effective, then tunes and adjusts its behavior accordingly.

As can be seen in these principles the agile approach is focused in building a co-located team and in seeing the benefits though the eyes of the team. Much of the project management tasks can be reduced to minimum due the co-location, and remaining tasks can be integrated seamlessly to the development work. Agreeing the tasks, reviewing the results, setting and striving for the task goals, solving the rising issues and other such tasks become a part of the teamwork. Similarly, external parties become an integral part or contributors of the team.

It is more difficult to achieve similar benefits in larger organizations (Kettunen, 2009) where the number of people leads to the existence of many teams and the distance between people grow bigger, even global in many occasions. Inevitably the external parties will become more distanced as well. So the agile benefits for larger organizations cannot be expected to be the same or on the same level as for small organizations. Yet the expectations are that an agile organization is responsive to the customer needs, even when the customer has difficulties in deciding on his/her own needs and changes his/her opinion frequently. In large organizations this kind of changes often have the "whip effect", similar to that in a supply chain (Lee, Padmanabhan & Whang, 1997). It creates variance and bottlenecks throughout the development and the delivery process. Keeping focus in tasks that are delivering value to the customer in the customer satisfying manner and removing the rest becomes a major challenge.

The promise of better quality is to be deemed as well (Abbas, 2009). Thought the quality in a team level means improving in a team level that does not build linearly up to better quality in larger organizations. On the contrary, the local quality optimization may lead to deterioration of overall quality due to different understanding of the optimum and conflicting implementations of the quality related practices. Having a large number of people allows the development of larger software, but requires also growing attention to the non-functional characteristics, like reliability, usability, maintainability, and other "ilities". The traditional means for the quality control, like a separate quality organization or quality gates in the process can easily lead to additional effort that may not add value to the customer.

Parallel to obtaining the customer value and the quality benefits there are business stakeholders, like owners, partners, and top management of the organization to be satisfied as well (Power, 2010). In a larger organization their distance grows to customers and also to satisfying the customer needs. Each group defines and focuses on their own interests. It becomes a challenge to achieve the customer-supplier win-win in practice. The effectiveness of an organization from its stakeholder point of view compromises the pure customer value creating interests. Particularly for the product development organizations where the product manager is "a proxy customer" distance to the customer grows bigger than what is stated in the initial agile principles.

The third interest group to satisfy is the developers and the development organization in general (Cockburn & Highsmith, 2001; Melnik & Mauer, 2006). In a large organization they easily drift away from the customers but from the business stakeholders alike. It becomes challenging to foster the customer and business knowledge, the technical and development competence, and the large-scale teamwork in a partial isolation. Consequently the demand for customer co-operation, productive self-organizing teams, growth of essential competences, and the like agile promises are not fulfilled. Yet these are the essential characteristics of an agile software development organization.\

In short, the expectations have grown that the agile approach can be transformed from a team level methodology to the working and management practice of a larger organization and still retain the agile benefits. So the model of a small, co-located self-organizing team, consisting of skilled and apt people, working closely together with a customer fulfilling customer changing needs can be mapped to large organization that provides (Highsmith, 2007; Schwaber, 2007):

- Increased customer satisfaction

- Reduced time-to-market (better "time-to-benefit")

- Increased quality

- Improved project portfolio and product management (project types, features)

- Improved product development investment management (control and flexibility)

- Reduced "waste" (increased efficiency, productivity, development cost)

- Better predictability (visibility)

- Better risk management (risk reduction)

- Better workforce morale (developer satisfaction, well-being)

The two main strategies for expansion are inside-out and outside-in. The inside-out strategy means not just expanding from the team level to the management structure but also adjusting to and with the surrounding practices, that is, expanding the agile and agile compliant principles to cover more areas of the software development life cycle as well as to the managing of the software development organization. The outside-in strategy means amalgamating the agile development with the traditional software development and the organization management sustaining both as much as possible.


Building High-Performing Teams

1. Define a very clear picture of the future - a vision for the team. This is crucial, because teams search desperately for specific targets. Consider the old expression: "If you don't know where you are going, any road will get you there." Journeys without a clear destination leave groups feeling flat and lost. Keeping teams informed on where they're headed and how best to get there means leaders must be prepared to acknowledge and adapt to changes in operational conditions and even objectives. Leaders cannot sit back and watch, but instead must create and recreate the vision and team spirit that stops people losing heart and becoming lost.

2. Be genuine, even if it means lowering your guard. Leaders who create 'click' have an uncanny sense about how and when to express their inner selves. They will even reveal their own vulnerabilities at the right time to gain the respect of those around them. They are not so concerned about projecting a perfect image: they know that high-impact leaders get results by laughing at their own flaws. They don't play make-believe, knowing it's more important 'to be' than to 'seem to be'.

3. Ask good questions. They use enquiry and advocacy in such a way as to keep them abreast of what is really going on. They seem to use a simple formula of the 70-20-10 rule in conversations: 70 per cent listening, 20 per cent enquiring with just the right amount of advocacy, and 10 per cent tracking (i.e., summarizing and synthesizing information, and providing possible courses of action).

4. Talk about things - even the hard things. A leader who gets their team to click is not afraid to talk about the tough stuff. They find ways to have the difficult conversations in the knowledge that burying problems doesn't make them go away. They also know that if they, as leader, don't talk about things, no-one will and, pretty soon, a culture will develop in which too many things are left unsaid. (I can always tell when teams are dysfunctional by measuring the amount of stuff not talked about, or what I call the "let's not go there" issues.)

5. Follow through on commitments. Leaders of high-performing teams find ways to build trust and maintain it, especially by making teams hold to their commitments and keeping the team's view of its goals clear. However, they also know how to distinguish professional trust from blind loyalty.

6. Let others speak first. In high-performing teams, members see themselves as equal in terms of communication. Leaders should therefore encourage this by putting the other person's need to express their agenda ahead of their own.

7. Listen. High-performing teams comprise people who have mastered the art of listening without fear, of allowing others to speak without reacting strongly or negatively to what is being said, or what they anticipate will be said. The leader fosters and honors this attribute within the team by quickly putting a stop to bad conversational behavior that cuts other people off and implies that their ideas are not valued. The leader knows that achieving higher levels of innovation requires team members to be unafraid to express unusual ideas and advocate experimental processes. They emphasize this by publicly thanking those who take risks - and by making sure that sharp-shooters put their guns away.

8. Face up to non-performing players. This brings us to a very important characteristic of high-performing teams, which is that their leaders do not tolerate players who pull the team apart. Interestingly, experienced leaders frequently maintain unity and discipline through third parties in the form of people we call 'passionate champions'. A leader may surround his or herself with several passionate champions, who have established an understanding and close working relationship with one another, and who are totally focused on, and committed to, the team's objectives. They are capable of getting the job done - and not afraid to remove people who are failing to help them do so.

9. Have fun, but never at others' expense. High-impact leaders steer clear of sarcasm: they always take the high road. If they do make fun of someone, it's usually themselves. They have learned the lesson that reckless humor can be misinterpreted and backfire. They know that critics of the organization can turn inappropriate remarks back on a leader who makes them.

10. Be confident and dependable. Somehow, over and above the daily struggle, leaders who get teams to click project confidence. They do this by preparing their conversations and not backing away from, or skimming over, real issues and problems, even difficult or confronting ones. They always address 'What's up?' and 'What's so?' in the organization. They don't try to be spin doctors because they know that, ultimately, this doesn't work. Rather, they are known as straight shooters - people who play hard, fight fair, and never, never give up. At the end of the day, team members know that, whatever happens, their leader will be left standing. This gives them confidence that they will be standing, too. They also know that, should things get really bad, their leader will not desert them or try to shift the blame, but seek to protect them, even if it means standing in the line of fire.

Source of Information : PhilHarkins 10 Leadership Techniques for Building High Performing Teams

Using Windows Internet Name Service

WINS is a service that resolves computer names to IP addresses. Using WINS, the computer name COMPUTER84, for example, can be resolved to an IP address that enables computers on a Microsoft network to find one another and transfer information. WINS is needed to support pre–Windows 2000 systems and older applications that use NetBIOS over TCP/IP, such as the .NET command-line utilities. If you don’t have pre–Windows 2000 systems or applications on the network, you don’t need to use WINS.

WINS works best in client/server environments in which WINS clients send single-label (host) name queries to WINS servers for name resolution and WINS servers resolve the query and respond. When all your DNS servers are running Windows Server 2008 or later, deploying a Global Names zone creates static, global records with single-label names without relying on WINS. This allows users to access hosts using single-label names rather than FQDNs and removes the dependency on WINS. To transmit WINS queries and other information, computers use NetBIOS. NetBIOS provides an application programming interface (API) that allows computers on a network to communicate. NetBIOS applications rely on WINS or the local LMHOSTS file to resolve computer names to IP addresses. On pre–Windows 2000 networks, WINS is the primary name resolution service available. On Windows 2000 and later networks, DNS is the primary name resolution service and WINS has a different function. This function is to allow pre–Windows 2000 systems to browse lists of resources on the network and to allow Windows 2000 and later systems to locate NetBIOS resources.

To enable WINS name resolution on a network, you need to configure WINS clients and servers. When you configure WINS clients, you tell the clients the IP addresses for WINS servers on the network. Using the IP addresses, clients can communicate with WINS servers anywhere on the network, even if the servers are on different subnets. WINS clients can also communicate by using a broadcast method through which clients broadcast messages to other computers on the local network segment requesting their IP addresses. Because messages are broadcast, the WINS server isn’t used. Any non-WINS clients that support this type of message broadcasting can also use this method to resolve computer names to IP addresses.

When clients communicate with WINS servers, they establish sessions that have the following three key parts:

» Name registration. During name registration, the client gives the server its computer name and its IP address and asks to be added to the WINS database. If the specified computer name and IP address aren’t already in use on the network, the WINS server accepts the request and registers the client in the WINS database.

» Name renewal. Name registration isn’t permanent. Instead, the client can use the name for a specified period known as a lease. The client is also given a time period within which the lease must be renewed, which is known as the renewal interval. The client must reregister with the WINS server during the renewal interval.
» Name release. If the client can’t renew the lease, the name registration is released, allowing another system on the network to use the computer name, IP address, or both. The names are also released when you shut down a WINS client.

After a client establishes a session with a WINS server, the client can request name resolution services. The method used to resolve computer names to IP addresses depends on how the network is configured. The following four name-resolution methods are available:

» B-node (broadcast). Uses broadcast messages to resolve computer names to IP addresses. Computers that need to resolve a name broadcast a message to every host on the local network, requesting the IP address for a computer name. On a large network with hundreds or thousands of computers, these broadcast messages can use up valuable network bandwidth.

» P-node (peer-to-peer). Uses WINS servers to resolve computer names to IP addresses. As explained earlier, client sessions have three parts: name registration, name renewal, and name release. In this mode, when a client needs to resolve a computer name to an IP address, the client sends a query message to the server and the server responds with an answer.

» M-node (mixed). Combines b-node and p-node. With m-node, a WINS client first tries to use b-node for name resolution. If the attempt fails, the client then tries to use p-node. Because b-node is used first, this method has the same problems with network bandwidth usage as b-node.

» H-node (hybrid). Also combines b-node and p-node. With h-node, a WINS client first tries to use p-node for peer-to-peer name resolution. If the attempt fails, the client then tries to use broadcast messages with b-node. Because peer-to-peer is the primary method, h-node offers the best perfor¬mance on most networks. H-node is also the default method for WINS name resolution.

If WINS servers are available on the network, Windows clients use the p-node method for name resolution. If no WINS servers are available on the network, Windows clients use the b-node method for name resolution. Windows computers can also use DNS and the local files LMHOSTS and HOSTS to resolve network names.

When you use DHCP to assign IP addresses dynamically, you should set the name resolution method for DHCP clients. To do this, you need to set DHCP scope options for the 046 WINS/NBT Node Type as specified in “Setting Scope Options”. The best method to use is h-node. You’ll get the best performance and have reduced traffic on the network.

Source of Information : Windows Server 2012 Pocket Consultant 2012

Windows Server 2012 - Using Domain Name System

DNS is a name-resolution service that resolves computer names to IP addresses. Using DNS, the fully qualified host name, for example, can be resolved to an IP address, which allows it and other computers to find one another. DNS operates over the TCP/IP protocol stack and can be integrated with WINS, Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP), and Active Directory Domain Services.
DNS organizes groups of computers into domains. These domains are organized into a hierarchical structure, which can be defined on an Internet-wide basis for public networks or on an enterprise-wide basis for private networks (also known as intranets and extranets). The various levels within the hierarchy identify individual computers, organizational domains, and top-level domains. For the fully qualified host name, computer84 represents the host name for an individual computer, cpandl is the organizational domain, and com is the top-level domain.

Top-level domains are at the root of the DNS hierarchy; they are also called root domains. These domains are organized geographically, by organization type, and by function. Normal domains, such as, are also referred to as parent domains. They’re called parent domains because they’re the parents of an organizational structure. Parent domains can be divided into subdomains that can be used for groups or departments within an organization.

Subdomains are often referred to as child domains. For example, the fully qualified domain name (FQDN) for a computer within a human resources group could be Here, jacob is the host name, hr is the child domain, and is the parent domain.

Active Directory domains use DNS to implement their naming structure and hierarchy. Active Directory and DNS are tightly integrated, so much so that you should install DNS on the network before you can install domain controllers using Active Directory. During installation of the first domain controller on an Active Directory network, you’re given the opportunity to install DNS automatically if a DNS server can’t be found on the network. You are also able to specify whether DNS and Active Directory should be fully integrated. In most cases, you should respond affirmatively to both requests. With full integration, DNS information is stored directly in Active Directory. This allows you to take advantage of Active Directory’s capabilities. The difference between partial integration and full integration is very important:

» Partial integration With partial integration, the domain uses standard file storage. DNS information is stored in text-based files that end with the .dns extension, and the default location of these files is %SystemRoot%\System32\Dns. Updates to DNS are handled through a single authoritative DNS server. This server is designated as the primary DNS server for the particular domain or an area within a domain called a zone. Clients that use dynamic DNS updates through DHCP must be configured to use the primary DNS server in the zone. If they aren’t, their DNS information won’t be updated. Likewise, dynamic updates through DHCP can’t be made if the primary DNS server is offline.

» Full integration With full integration, the domain uses directory-integrated storage. DNS information is stored directly in Active Directory and is available through the container for the dns Zone object. Because the information is part of Active Directory, any domain controller can access the data and a multimaster approach can be used for dynamic updates through DHCP. This allows any domain controller running the DNS Server service to handle dynamic updates. Furthermore, clients that use dynamic DNS updates through DHCP can use any DNS server within the zone. An added benefit of directory integration is the ability to use directory security to control access to DNS information.

If you look at the way DNS information is replicated throughout the network, you can see more advantages to full integration with Active Directory. With partial integration, DNS information is stored and replicated separately from Active Direc¬tory. Having two separate structures reduces the effectiveness of both DNS and Ac¬tive Directory and makes administration more complex. Because DNS is less efficient than Active Directory at replicating changes, you might also increase network traffic and the amount of time it takes to replicate DNS changes throughout the network.

To enable DNS on the network, you need to configure DNS clients and servers. When you configure DNS clients, you tell the clients the IP addresses of DNS servers on the network. Using these addresses, clients can communicate with DNS servers anywhere on the network, even if the servers are on different subnets.

When you install the DNS Server service on an RODC, the RODC is able to pull a read only replica of all application directory partitions that are used by DNS, includ¬ing ForestDNSZones and DomainDNSZones. Clients can then query the RODC for name resolution as they would query any other DNS server. However, as with direc¬tory updates, the DNS server on an RODC does not support direct updates. This means that the RODC does not register name server (NS) resource records for any Active Directory–integrated zone that it hosts. When a client attempts to update its DNS records against an RODC, the server returns a referral to a DNS server that the client can use for the update. The DNS server on the RODC should receive the updated record from the DNS server that receives details about the update using a special replicate-single-object request that runs as a background process.

Windows 7 and later releases add support for DNS Security Extensions (DNSSEC). The DNS client running on these operating systems can send queries that indicate support for DNSSEC, process related records, and determine whether a DNS server has validated records on its behalf. On Windows servers, this allows your DNS serv¬ers to securely sign zones and to host DNSSEC-signed zones. It also allows DNS serv¬ers to process related records and perform both validation and authentication.

Source of Information : Windows Server 2012 Pocket Consultant 2012

Windows Server 2012 Power Management Options

When working with power management, important characteristics to focus on include the following:

» Cooling modes
» Device states
» Processor states

ACPI defines active and passive cooling modes. These cooling modes are inversely related to each other:

» Passive cooling reduces system performance but is quieter because there’s less fan noise. With passive cooling, Windows lessens power consumption to reduce the operating temperature of the computer but at the cost of system performance. Here, Windows reduces the processor speed in an attempt to cool the computer before increasing fan speed, which would increase power consumption.

» Active cooling allows maximum system performance. With active cooling, Windows increases power consumption to reduce the temperature of the machine. Here, Windows increases fan speed to cool the computer before attempting to reduce processor speed.

Power policy includes an upper and lower limit for the processor state, referred to as the maximum processor state and the minimum processor state, respectively. These states are implemented by making use of a feature of ACPI 3.0 and later ver¬sions called processor throttling, and they determine the range of currently available processor performance states that Windows can use. By setting the maximum and minimum values, you define the bounds for the allowed performance states, or you can use the same value for each to force the system to remain in a specific per¬formance state. Windows reduces power consumption by throttling the processor speed. For example, if the upper bound is 100 percent and the lower bound is 5 per¬cent, Windows can throttle the processor within this range as workloads permit to reduce power consumption. In a computer with a 3-GHz processor, Windows would adjust the operating frequency of the processor between .15 GHz and 3.0 GHz.

Processor throttling and related performance states were introduced with Windows XP and are not new, but these early implementations were designed for computers with discrete-socketed processors and not for computers with proces¬sor cores. As a result, they are not effective in reducing the power consumption of computers with logical processors. Windows 7 and later releases of Windows reduce power consumption in computers with multicore processors by leveraging a feature of ACPI 4.0 called logical processor idling and by updating processor throttling fea¬tures to work with processor cores.

Logical processor idling is designed to ensure that Windows uses the fewest number of processor cores for a given workload. Windows accomplishes this by con¬solidating workloads onto the fewest cores possible and suspending inactive proces¬sor cores. As additional processing power is required, Windows activates inactive processor cores. This idling functionality works in conjunction with management of process performance states at the core level.

ACPI defines processor performance states, referred to as p-states, and proces¬sor idle sleep states, referred to as c-states. Processor performance states include P0 (the processor/core uses its maximum performance capability and can consume maximum power), P1 (the processor/core is limited below its maximum and con¬sumes less than maximum power), and Pn (where state n is a maximum number that is processor dependent, and the processor/core is at its minimal level and consumes minimal power while remaining in an active state).

Processor idle sleep states include C0 (the processor/core can execute instruc¬tions), C1 (the processor/core has the lowest latency and is in a nonexecuting power state), C2 (the processor/core has longer latency to improve power savings over the C1 state), and C3 (the processor/core has the longest latency to improve power sav¬ings over the C1 and C2 states).

ACPI 4.0 was finalized in June 2009 and ACPI 5.0 was finalized in December 2011. Computers manufactured prior to this time will likely not have firm¬ware that is fully compliant, and you will probably need to update the firmware when a compatible revision becomes available. In some cases, and especially with older hardware, you might not be able to update a computer’s firmware to make it fully compliant with ACPI 4.0 or ACPI 5.0. For example, if you are configuring the power options and you don’t have minimum and maximum processor state options, the computer’s firmware isn’t fully compatible with ACPI 3.0 and likely will not fully sup¬port ACPI 4.0 or ACPI 5.0 either. Still, you should check the hardware manufacturer’s website for firmware updates.

Windows switches processors/cores between any p-state and from the C1 state to the C0 state nearly instantaneously (fractions of milliseconds) and tends not to use the deep sleep states, so you don’t need to worry about performance impact to throttle or wake up processors/cores. The processors/cores are available when they are needed. That said, the easiest way to limit processor power management is to modify the ac¬tive power plan and set the minimum and maximum processor states to 100 percent.

Logical processor idling is used to reduce power consumption by removing a logical processor from the operating system’s list of nonprocessor-affinitized work. However, because processor-affinitized work reduces the effectiveness of this feature, you’ll want to plan carefully prior to configuring processing affinity settings for applica¬tions. Windows System Resource Manager allows you to manage processor resources through percent processor usage targets and processor affinity rules. Both techniques reduce the effectiveness of logical processor idling.

Windows saves power by putting processor cores in and out of appropriate p-states and c states. On a computer with four logical processors, Windows might use p-states 0 to 5, where P0 allows 100 percent usage, P1 allows 90 percent usage, P2 allows 80 percent usage, P3 allows 70 percent usage, P4 allows 60 percent usage, and P5 allows 50 percent usage. When the computer is active, logical processor 0 would likely be active with a p state of 0 to 5, and the other processors would likely be at an appropriate p-state or in a sleep state.

Source of Information : Windows Server 2012 Pocket Consultant 2012

Getting to Know Windows Server 2012

The Windows Server 2012 operating system includes several different editions. All Windows Server 2012 editions support multiple processor cores. It is important to point out that although an edition might support only one discrete-socketed processor (also referred to as a physical processor), that one processor could have eight processor cores (also referred to as logical processors).

Windows Server 2012 is a 64-bit-only operating system. 64-bit systems designed for the x64 architecture as 64-bit systems. Because the various server editions support the same core features and administration tools.

When you install a Windows Server 2012 system, you configure the system according to its role on the network, as the following guidelines describe:

» Servers are generally assigned to be part of a workgroup or a domain.

» Workgroups are loose associations of computers in which each individual computer is managed separately.

» Domains are collections of computers you can manage collectively by means of domain controllers, which are Windows Server 2012 systems that manage access to the network, to the directory database, and to shared resources.

Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server 2012 family refer to all editions of Windows Server 2012. The various server editions support the same core features and administration tools.

Unlike Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2012 uses a Start screen. Start is a window, not a menu. Programs can have tiles on the Start screen. Tapping or clicking a tile runs the program. When you press and hold or right-click on a program, an options panel normally is displayed. The charms bar is an options panel for Start, Desktop, and PC Settings. With a touch UI, you can display the charms by sliding in from the right side of the screen. With a mouse and keyboard, you can display the charms by moving the mouse pointer over the hidden button in the upper-right or lower-right corner of the Start, Desktop, or PC Settings screen; or by pressing Windows key+C.

Tap or click the Search charm to display the Search panel. Any text typed while on the Start screen is entered into the Search box in the Search panel. The Search box can be focused on Apps, Settings, or Files. When focused on Apps, you can use Search to quickly find installed programs. When focused on Settings, you can use Search to quickly find settings and options in Control Panel. When focused on Files, you can use Search to quickly find files.

One way to quickly open a program is by pressing the Windows key, typing the file name of the program, and then pressing Enter. This shortcut works as long as the Apps Search box is in focus (which it typically is by default).

Pressing the Windows key toggles between the Start screen and the desktop (or, if you are working with PC Settings, between Start and PC Settings). On Start, there’s a Desktop tile that you can tap or click to display the desktop. You also can display the desktop by pressing Windows key+D or, to peek at the desktop, press and hold Windows key+Comma. From Start, you access Control Panel by tapping or clicking the Control Panel tile. From the desktop, you can display Control Panel by accessing the charms, tapping or clicking Settings, and then tapping or clicking Control Panel. Additionally, because File Explorer is pinned to the desktop taskbar by default you typically can access Control Panel on the desktop by following these steps:

1. Open File Explorer by tapping or clicking the taskbar icon.
2. Tap or click the leftmost option button (down arrow) in the address list.
3. Tap or click Control Panel.

Start and Desktop have a handy menu that you can display by pressing and holding or right-clicking the lower-left corner of the Start screen or the desktop. Options on the menu include Command Prompt, Command Prompt (Admin), Device Manager, Event Viewer, System, and Task Manager. On Start, the hidden button in the lower-left corner shows a thumbnail view of the desktop when activated, and tapping or clicking the thumbnail opens the desktop. On the desktop, the hidden button in the lower-left corner shows a thumbnail view of Start when activated and tapping or clicking the thumbnail opens Start. Pressing and holding or right-clicking the thumbnail is what displays the shortcut menu.

Shutdown and Restart are options of Power settings now. This means to shut down or restart a server, you follow these steps:

1. Display Start options by sliding in from the right side of the screen or moving the mouse pointer to the bottom right or upper right corner of the screen.
2. Tap or click Settings and then tap or click Power.
3. Tap or click Shut Down or Restart as appropriate.

Alternatively, press the server’s physical power button to initiate an orderly shutdown by logging off and then shutting down. If you are using a desktop-class system and the computer has a sleep button, the sleep button is disabled by default, as are closing the lid options for portable computers. Additionally, servers are con¬figured to turn off the display after 10 minutes of inactivity.

Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012 support the Advanced Configuration and Power Interface (ACPI) 5.0 specification. Windows uses ACPI to control system and device power state transitions, putting devices in and out of full-power (working), low-power, and off states to reduce power consumption.

The power settings for a computer come from the active power plan. You can access power plans in Control Panel by tapping or clicking System And Security and then tapping or clicking Power Options. Windows Server 2012 includes the Power Configuration (Powercfg.exe) utility for managing power options from the command line. At a command prompt, you can view the configured power plans by typing powercfg /l. The active power plan is marked with an asterisk.

The default, active power plan in Windows Server 2012 is called Balanced. The Balanced plan is configured to do the following:

» Never turn off hard disks (as opposed to turning off hard disks after a speci¬fied amount of idle time)

» Disable timed events to wake the computer (as opposed to enabling wake on timed events)

» Enable USB selective suspend (as opposed to disabling selective suspend)

» Use moderate power savings for idle PCI Express links (as opposed to maxi¬mum power savings being on or off)

» Use active system cooling by increasing the fan speed before slowing proces¬sors (as opposed to using passive system cooling to slow the processors before increasing fan speed)

» Use minimum processor and maximum processor states if supported (as op¬posed to using a fixed state)

NOTE: Power consumption is an important issue, especially as organizations try to become more earth friendly. Saving power also can save your organization money and, in some cases, allow you to install more servers in your data centers. If you install Windows Server 2012 on a laptop—for testing or for your personal computer, for example—your power settings will be slightly different, and you’ll also have settings for when the laptop is running on battery.

Source of Information : Windows Server 2012 Pocket Consultant 2012

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