21 Mar 10 Change Local Admin Password on Multiple Domain PC’s

Your have a team of IT guys in your company and one of them either leaves or is let go. You have over 1000 computers in your domain and now you have to reset all the Administrator passwords. Changing a Domain Administrator password is pretty simple. You simply make the change in one location and it gets replicated across the whole Active Directory. However what about the Local Administrator Accounts on all the PC’s?

OOOOh yes it absolutely sounds like a huge painful project when you have 10 to 20 computers on the network it is so much easier to just walk over to each PC and reset/change the Local Administrator Password, but when you have over 1000 computers in your domain and you have to change local Administrator password on all those computers and make sure it is done, that is a scary thought.

I was given this task at work and after some research I found so many scripts and none of them were good enough for what I wanted to accomplish. I needed something that will not only allow me to change local administrator password but will also generate a failure report. After doing some more research I came across a utility called PWDMan.

This is a free utility and will enable you to easily change local administrator passwords on all the domain computers. This utility gives you the option to use the domain, or a list of computers in the domain, or simply type in the computer name. Certainly if you are 1000+ computers in your domain you want to go with the first two options. Once you specify the new admin password, utility will run for a few minutes and you are done. After that you can simply export the failure report and find out which computers process was unsuccessful and you can manually go take care of them.

I have attached a few screen shots of the process:

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24 Jan 10 Open Source Firewalls

With the economy being so bad many companies are trying to cut their technology budget. However that doesn’t mean that companies have to sacrifice the quality or risk their infrastructure. There are many excellent Open Source Solutions out there that can be used if you have a hard working Network guy who isn’t afraid of a challenge he can save you lots of money by utilizing Open Source Solutions in certain areas. Take Firewalls for example, there are so many different kinds of firewalls out there so many vendors make them. From Linksys, Dlink to Higher end vendors such as Cisco, Checkpoint, Juniper etc.

Now if your company can really afford a good firewall I’d say go with Cisco ASA’s 5505 or 5500 series depending on the size of your company. However I have come across couple of excellent Open Source Firewalls that are great, offer every single feature you can think of and more.
First one on my list is PFSENSE and secondly SMOOTHWALL.

All you need is a decent enough computer with two Network cards and you are good to go. Installing these firewalls is extremely easy, took me like 5 min to install each. They support a wide variety of hardware. Take a look at some of the impressive features these firewalls offer:

  1. Supports multiple WAN connections
  2. Supports VLAN’s and unlimited users (depends on your hardware)
  3. Support for IPSec and SSL VPN, PPTP
  4. PFSense have inbuilt support for OpenVPN
  5. Firewall policies/access control list
  6. Intrusion detection system
  7. Excellent logging and reporting tools on bandwidth usage
  8. Works with multiple other vendors
  9. 802.1x Authentication, RADIUS
  10. Captive Portal
  11. IM Proxy support (Smooth Wall)
  12. Support for Dynamic DNS
  13. NAT/PAT Port forwarding
  14. DMZ configuration
  15. Support for DHCP, DNS, PROXY
  16. WAN Redundancy, Load Balancing

Both are available for download from PFSense and Smooth Wall. I suggest before putting them in production use them in a lab and make sure that you are capable of supporting and updating it.

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