AC Brown’s Cloud Guide- Part 2 – Cloud Architecture

In my last post, we covered the basic concepts of cloud computing. This time, we’ll be diving down a little deeper into the cloud to cover the actual structure that most cloud environments use to operate. There are a lot of differences between cloud providers, but they all use very similar hardware and network designs to get things done.…

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Exchange Server Maintenance Functions

Exchange server maintenance requires some specific steps in 2013+. There is no specific maintenance mode, as in previous versions, but you can complete a few actions to take a server out of production. You will need to drain the SMTP queues on the server, tag the services as unavailable, then disable transport entirely. Each step needs to have some rest time, so that is built into the script.…

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Fixing Outlook Certificate Errors

How to solve problems with Exchange Autodiscover. Certificate Error issues in particular.

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Exchange Server EMail Routing – Accepted Domains and Send Connectors

Exchange Server (And Exchange Online) can be a little confusing at times, particularly when we're dealing with mail routing. Internal mail routes are handled almost automatically (especially if you keep all your Exchange servers in the same AD Site, which I recommend), but how do you get it to route email to mail servers *outside* your organization? This post answers all the questions you might have about how to handle Special Mail Routing cases for Exchange.

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Hardening Microsoft Solutions from Attacks

Take a minute to go over this post from Dirk-jan Mollema. Go ahead and read it. I’ll wait…

Did you realize how scary that kind of attack is? As an IT guy who specializes in Exchange server and loves studying security, that article scared the snot out of me. Based on my experience with organizations of all sizes I can say with a good bit of authority that almost every Exchange organization out there is probably vulnerable to this attack.…

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Office 365 Message Encryption Setup

Office 365 Encryption with Azure Information Protection

As I mentioned in an earlier post, email encryption is a sticky thing. In a perfect world, everyone would have Opportunistic TLS enabled and all mail traffic would be automatically encrypted with STARTTLS encryption, which is a fantastic method of ensuring security of messages “in transit”. But some messages need to be encrypted “at rest” due to security policies or regulations.…

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Data Encryption – How it Works (Part 1)


I’ve decided to start a short series of posts on data encryption, which is becoming an increasingly important subject in IT as government regulations and privacy concerns demand ever increasing levels of privacy and security.

In this series, I’ll try to cover the more confusing concepts in encryption, including the three main types of encryption systems used today; Private Key encryption, Public Key Encryption, and SSL/TLS encryption.…

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