Lost My IT Person (Windows Server 2003)

Recently, our IT Administrator has left our company. He will not be replaced, and I have been handed the responsibility. I was given the administrator password, and have perused around a bit. I have very limited knowledge with Servers. The previous administrator had agreed to assist for the 1st month, but that time has since expired.

I would appreciate any assistance as to what I should be doing or a resource I can turn to.

Thanks in Advance!

Julie
Windows Server 2003
jwooden08Asked:
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hlarseCommented:
Congratulations on your new assignment.  Good luck.
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jwooden08Author Commented:
thanks hlarse.

Nothing like a good challege.

Any suggestions?
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hlarseCommented:
Suggestions for what type of issue?
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jwooden08Author Commented:
no real issues...yet!
just wondered if there was a recommend resource for learning about the server,
and any updates or actions I should be taking.
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hlarseCommented:
I like this one http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1931836124/osnews-20.  A lot of people also lie the O'Reilly books http://www.oreilly.com/catalog/lwinsvr20032/.  Of course, Microsoft has it's own manuals, and there are a lot of them, because there are a lot of flavors of MS certifications http://www.ebookee.com/Microsoft-Press-Books-and-Microsoft-Official-Curriculum-MOC-rapidshare-download_31989.html.

Just remember, a server is just a computer on steroids.  If you're adept at Windows XP, server isn't too far away, at least the basic understanding.
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
Question - what version of Windows is this?  Is it Windows Small Business Server 2003?  Or a standard version of Windows Server?  It's important to be clear on this as the products are managed very differently.  If it's small business server, there are many resources you can be directed to.  Small Business Server (SBS) was designed to be administered by a non-administrator.  

That said, you should start looking for a consulting company to help you out.  This site (and others like it) can be a great resource, but there are times when you will simply need expert hands on site.  I would suspect the decision not to hire a replacement for your admin was, at least in part, a cost savings decision -- which is fine.  BUT for those times when you need the expert, the $100-150 an hour (or more) can be well worth it.  If a consultant has to spend 10 hours a month on site, at $150 per hour, that's still $18,000 - probably less than half what you were paying your admin (and frankly, if you find a GOOD consultant, you may need less than half that time.  I've got some clients I only visit for 2-4 hours a month, baring something major happening).

Now, here's something you can look over since you are likely now THE IT staff for your company.  Some things here may not apply to you, but others you might find helpful - even just to know they exist:
www.lwcomputing.com/tips/static/techtoolkit.asp
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
A few good web sites for basic how-tos (in my opinion):

http://www.petri.co.il
www.wown.com
www.visualwin.com

And if you click the articles link on the left of the previous web site, I've got a few generalized (but lengthy) articles on how to do a few things that are pretty important - managing your server's disk space (C: drive), backups, and a couple of others.
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jwooden08Author Commented:
leew

Thanks for your help, and the list of resources.

Is there a quick way of figuring which version I have? The SBS or the Standard?
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Andrew DavisManagerCommented:
When you are logged on at the server (not a client computer) press ctrl-alt-delete and at the top of the popup in the image will either be "Windows server 2003 - standard edition" or "Windows server 2003 - Small Business Server" They are the two main flavours, there are some others but they are not likely.

Cheers and goodluck.

Remember that at any time it is a fine to post any questions to us and we will assist.
in the mean time i would run SIW (google it) on your system and then under file export the results to a html file and then keep this file somewhere safe. It will create an assett register of the server detailing all software currently installed what version they are and any key's it also lists all hardware and relevent drivers and settings.
Cant sing its praises enough as a resource to go to when the poo hits the fan.

Regards
Andrew
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
Right click on the My Computer icon and select "properties".  Or open the system control panel (the right click/properties is basically a shortcut to the system control panel).  It will tell you the version of Windows you have.  On an SBS server it should say

Microsoft Windows Server 2003
for Small Business Server
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
SIW is great - it's on my page as well.  A few things I'll point (most if not all are on the page):

Look into getting a TechNet Plus Direct Subscription.  $350 but it includes 2 free calls to MS Support which is typically $245 each.  Plus it gives you NON-PRODUCTION licenses to a wide variety of Windows software and to some good training materials.

I know since you probably have other responsibilities as well, taking the time to setup testing servers (even virtually) can be difficult... but you should if you can find a way.  It's generally much better to make a change on a test system first than to try to make it on a production system - If the test system crashes, who cares?  If the production system crashes, EVERYONE cares.

Out of curiosity, how many users/systems are you now forced to manage?
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jwooden08Author Commented:
Thanks Leew & AJD.

I'll be taking a looking at the server type tomorrow, when back in the office.

I haven't counted the exact amount of users, but I'll assume 100.
Not sure what you mean as to systems.

I do have other responsibilities...none of which are tech related.
Even so, I was the best bet for replacing our IT person, since they have no plans of an actual replacement.

Cheers.
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
If you have 100 users than you don't have SBS (or at least you shouldn't)  SBS has a maximum of 75 users.  I was thinking you had 40-50... I would definitely advise and your company to hire a consultant who can help out with that many systems.
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jwooden08Author Commented:
Thanks Leew.

I have already started a dialog with an IT person, but he's def. more hardware orientated.

By any chance, do you know a way I can find out how many workstations, and printers are on the server, and is there a way to find their IP addresses?

thanks again...
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Andrew DavisManagerCommented:
have a look at lookatlan (google it) it will monitor your network and report all the ip's used. its a bit rudementry for this but it will serve you well. certainly i would have a GOOD consultant to fall back on if the stuff hits the poo
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jwooden08Author Commented:
Andrew & Lew-

I've gotten the chance to look at lookatlan and SIW
and I wish I had another 500 pts to give both of you!
I've installed them on my home network just to get a peek...and I can't wait to get to the office tomorrow to check them out.

Thanks a Million!
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Andrew DavisManagerCommented:
Your welcome, i hope they come in usefull for you. Just beware, with SIW if you dont buy a licenced version then it does things like displays the keys on the screen but does not export them in the reports. It's pretty cheap or you can cut and past the relevent info.

Regards
Andrew
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jwooden08Author Commented:
Thanks Andrew.
I'll be sure to purchase the software.

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Windows Server 2003

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