Installing Windows Server 2008 R2 using a USB drive

I wanted to install Windows Server 2008 R2 on an IBM Blade, however didn’t want to worry about burning a DVD first.  I had a look around the Internet looking for options to install the OS using a USB drive.  A few articles mentioned installing small programs to do this for me, however I wasn’t excited by the idea of what other things they might install on my computer as well.

First format the USB drive (with at least 3GB free)

Start a CMD prompt and start the diskpart utility, then type the following:

      list disk
      select disk x    (where x is the number of your USB drive.  For me it was disk 3)
      create partition primary
      select partition 1
      format fs=fat32

Copy the Windows Server 2008 R2 installation files to your USB drive

From a cmd window, enter the following:
xcopy d:\*.* /s/e/f e:\   (assumes your dvd is drive D: and your USB drive is drive e:\, adjust accordingly)

Insert the USB drive into your server.  Just after the white System x welcome screen, hold down the F12 key on your IBM Blade to change it’s default boot order.  Select the USB option.

Windows Server 2008 R2 should then install just fine from your USB key


Migrating Systems Director Database from Apache Derby to SQL 2005

I needed to migrate IBM Systems Director default Apache database to a local instance of Microsoft SQL 2005.  The install guide was ok and so was IBM’s System Director redbook to describe the process, however I still forgot to include a step to get it going.  So I thought I’d document the process for others in the

Prerequisite Software Installed

Ensure that the pre-requisite software is installed on the ISD server:

SQL Database and Database Account

Create a local SQL database account as shown in the following screen capture: 













Create a local SQL database with a name of DirectorDB (you could choose any database name), with a database owner of IBMDIR (in my example above)

Changing from Apache Derby to Microsoft SQL

  1. Stop the IBM Systems Director Service
  2. Edit the following file C:\Program Files\IBM\Director\proddata\cfgdbcmd.rspand comment out the Apache section and update the SQL database section as shown in the following example:;===============================================================================
    = SQLServer
    DbmsTcpIpListenerPort = 1433DbmsServerName = IBMDIR
    DbmsDatabaseName =
    DbmsUserId = IBMDIR
    DbmsPassword =
    DbmsDatabaseAppHome = C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL
    Server JDBC Driver
    DbmsIntegratedSecurity =
  3. Encrypt the password in the cfgdbcmd.rsp via the following command:C:\Program Files\IBM\Director \bin cfgserver.bat –db
  4. Enter the DbmsUserId / DbmsPassword as listed in the cfgdbcmd.rsp when prompted.
  5. Change to the C:\Program Files\IBM\Director\proddata directory
  6. Run the following command:cfgdbcmd.cmd -rspfile “C:\Program Files\IBM\Director\proddata\cfgdbcmd.rsp”
  7. Enter the database sa and password when prompted
  8. Change to the C:\Program Files\IBM\Director\bin directory
  9. Runthe following command:run smreset  (select 1 if prompted)
  10. Start the IBM System Director Service (it may take up to 10 minutes to be fully initialised)

Enhanced System x Quick Reference mobile app for iPhone, Blackberry, Android

I must admit I find my iPhone (3GS) incredibly useful.  When I had my trusty Nokia I used to see those iPhone guys flicking b/w apps and thought it looked more style than substance.  Now that I have an iPhone I can’t imagine ever using another type of phone.  Who know’s what will come along in the future though.

Apart from e-mail, Calendar, news, twitter, Toodledo, eBay, Slide Reader (RSS), Dropbox, banking etc.  I’ve started to use some of the new iPhone product apps IBM’s developed – such as System x, IBM Storage and IBM Remote (to remotely manage your BladeCentre etc).

Another new app is  the enhanced version of the IBM System x Quick Reference mobile app – now available for iPhone, Blackberry and Android devices. Users who already have the Pilot version of the app on their iPhone or Blackberry will be prompted to download the new version.

The new “Quick Reference for IBM System x” was developed by IBM in collaboration with our digital agency EURO RSCG, Velti (a global provider of mobile solutions) and STIBO systems. Features including a dynamic backend that automatically pulls in product data from our STG Content Factory.
New features include:
– Automatic data feed for latest product highlights, descriptions, and specifications
– Simple registration form that allows IBM to collect basic information including user role (Client, Business Partner, Seller)
– Users can opt in to receive e-mail or SMS updates allowing us to send messages tailored by role
– Enhanced interface design with easy-to-use navigation bar
– Ability to create list of favorite products
– More comprehensive coverage of IBM System x options
– New client success stories section
– Dedicated communities section with easy access to relevant social media and IBM experts
– Robust metrics

Download here:
iPhone version:
Blackberry version:
Android version:

Hi there, let me introduce myself

Hi there,

My name is Darryl Miles and I’ve been working in the IT industry for over 17 years now.   Over this time I’ve had a range of services roles in the design and delivery of infrastructure solutions with technologies such as VMware, Microsoft, Citrix and Linux.   I’ve authored IBM Redbooks and Redpapers on Windows, Citrix and Lotus Domino too.  I’ve even had time working and travelling in the UK/Europe which was great fun too.

This year I’m looking forward to a new challenge as a Systems Software Architect for STG (the hardware guys within IBM) for IBM Australia.   My role will be to demonstrate the value that System Software brings to IBM’s solutions.   Systems Software covers our platform management products and server operating systems.  Equally important however is how IBM products (both hardware and software) integrate with 3rd party providers.   Clients require solutions to business problems and just want all the ‘IT stuff’ things to work together regardless of the provider(s) !

Within IBM, I’m the co-leader of the Microsoft Technology Worldwide Community of Practice (MSCoP) within IBM, which fosters the sharing of information and IC to market and deliver engagements involving Microsoft technologies with IBM services and products.    Who would have thought IBM had an internal community on Microsoft ?   We have a large internal database of project IC for our deployment and support teams (as IBM supports a large client base of all sizes).  Our community also shares info on IBM products and how they work with Microsoft software.

So I’ve always loved to share my my experiences and info within IBM.  So I thought with my new role I’d take this ‘info sharing’ to a wider audience via an external blog.   So if you’re reading this blog,  I’d like to share with you interesting IBM Systems news/info I find, and things I learn with our products.   Oh… and the occasional commentry on being a Dad with two young kids under the age of 3 !

Bye for now.