Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content

Florida Man Crashes Computer Network; IT Saves the Day.

Jan 13
Creating a Custom Monitoring Service in OpenNMS to Monitor a Port or Service

Open NMS is a great program that allows you to detect and correct problems proactively rather than waiting for the helpdesk phone to ring and someone report an outage.

Open NMS allows you to monitor services and ports using custom configurations. In this example, we are going to create a custom polling service to monitor port 59183 which is being used by a TimeQ Plus server. The idea is to receive an alert when the TimeQ Plus service fails by monitoring the port status. You can adjust the service name and/or port number to configure a monitoring service that meets your specific needs.

First we are going to create a detector. Go to admin –> Provisioningrequisitions –> EditDetectors&Policies


From there, click on the add detector icon. Give your detector a friendly name and select TCP class or whatever class best matches your service. It’s recommended not to use spaces and to stick with an alpha-numeric, short character names. Click add parameter and select port, then add the value 59183 (or whatever port you are going to monitor).


You can add additiona parameters by clicking on the add parameter button. For example, you can add the service name (to monitor the service) as well as a timeout value, number of retries, etc. In our example, we are using arxservice as the service name, 59183 as the port and requesting 5 retries before the service is deemed unreachable.


When finished, the new detector may look something like this:


Note: don’t forget to click save when exiting each menu, otherwise the settings will not be saved.

Navigate to admin –> provisioning requisitions –> device group and locate the device to poll.

From the interfaces tab, click edit, the, select add service.


Select the newly created service from the drop down box  and click save when finished.


Open the shell, navidate to /etc/opennms and let’s edit the poller-configuration.xml file.

sudo nano /etc/opennms/poller-configuration.xml


Copy and paste the text below into the services section of the file, replacing the service name and port with your own. Note: The service name must match the name you used when creating the detector.

<service name="TimeQPlus" interval="30000" user-defined="false" status="on”>
   <parameter key="retry" value="3"/>
   <parameter key="port" value="59183"/>
   <parameter key="timeout" value="3000"/>
< /service>


Scroll to the bottom section and add a monitor service by copying and pasting the line below while replacing the monitor service name with your own. Again, the service name must match the name you chose for your service when you created the detector service.

<monitor service="TimeQPlus" class-name="org.opennms.netmgt.poller.monitors.TcpMonitor"/>


Exit and save the changes on your way out. You may need to reload the poller or restart the NMS server to load and use the new service.

Once the service is loaded, navigate to the device and you should see the custom service displayed.


To test that the alarm works, simply stop the service from running or block the port using a firewall.


If configured properly, Open NMS will record the outage and (if you set up email alerts) it will alert the appropriate service team!



Jan 10
Step by Step Install OpenNMS on Ubuntu 20.4

​You can find the offician installation guide here however in this post we will use a step by step method for installation instructions.

First, install Ubunti 20.4 OS and log in as root user. If you are not already a root user, switch by running the following command:

sudo -i

When you are logged in as the root user, the Ubuntu shell will display root as shown below.

Screenshot from 2021-01-10 17-10-12.png

Use the nano text editor to open the file /etc/apt/sources.list.d/opennms.list. At the shell prompt, run the following command:

nano /etc/apt/sources.list.d/opennms.list


Copy and paste the repositories below to the file:

deb stable main

deb-src stable main

it should look like this:


Press CTRL+X to exit and make sure you save the changes on your way out.

Add the GPG keys by running the following command:

wget -O - | apt-key add -

When done, update by running the following command:

apt update

Next, install Open NMS by running the following command:

apt -y install opennms

During the install process you will be prompted to manually install OpenNMS using the install command. This step will take place later on so juts select OK to proceed. You will be asked to choose a mail server type. For our example, we will select Internet and configure and SMTP server later on.


In the next screen, enter the Computer Name or FQDN of the system, for example: OpenNMS.mydomain.local.

After the information is entered, OpenNMS will begin the installation process and you will see a progress bar at the bottom of the shell window.

Next, place the OpenNMS repositories on hold by running the following command:

apt-mark hold libopennms-java \ libopennmsdeps-java \ opennms-common \ opennms-db

The repositories should only be enabled when you are going to upgrade/update OpenNMS. You can run the command apt-mark unhold followed by the package names when you want to release the repositories. Later, when you are finished upgrading, place them back on hold running the command apt-mark hold followed by the repository names again.

Next, start the Postgres database by executing the following command:

systemctl start postgresql

Now create and OpenNMS user named opennms and set the user as the DB owner. To do this, execute the following commands:

su - postgres

createuser -P opennms

When prompted, enter the password for the user opennms. The execute the created DB command:

createdb -O opennms opennms

Next, set the postgres password by executing the following command:

psql -c "ALTER USER postgres WITH PASSWORD 'Your-Password';"

Replace 'Your-Pasword' with your own strong password of choice.


When finished, type exit and press enter so that the shell prompt once again displays the user 'root' instead of the user 'postgres'.

Next, cmake sure there is a loopback rule to allow OpenNMS to access the database on the local interface. To do this, we are going to modify two lines in the Postgres file pg_hba.conf file which can be located in different places depending on the PG SQL version installed.

First, let's install mlocate command:

apt install mlocate

Next, use the locate command to find the location of pg_hba.conf:

locate pg_hba.conf

The command will return the exact location of the file. 


CD into the folder and from there, execute the following command to edit the file:

nano pg_hba.conf

Then scroll down to find the lines shown below and modify the file to look like this:

host    all             all               md5
host    all             all             ::1/128                 md5

If the lines already look like than then no need to make changes. Otherwise, modify the lines than press CTRL+X to exit and save the changes on your way out.


Now, configure the password access in the Open NMS DB by editing the opennms-datasources.xml file. This file  is typically located in the /etc/opennms folder however that's not always the case. If you have troubel locating the file, use the locate command and you did previously to find the exact location.

After you finish, apply the changes by executing the following command:

systemctl reload postgresql

We will use the nano text editor to make the changes. From the opennms folder, execute the command:

nano opennms-datasources.xml

Modify the XML items marked 1-5 below:


When finished, press CTRL+X and remember to save the changes on your way out.

Next, navigate to the OpenNMS folder located in /usr/shared/opennms/bin and enter the following commands:

./runjava -s

./install -dis

Don't forget the dot before the forward slash, it's necessary to execute the program file successfully. Both these files must be run from withing the bin folder so make sure to navigate to /usr/shared/opennms/bin before executing the file.

Now configure the OpenNMS system to automatically start on boot by executing the following command:

systemctl enable opennms

Now run NMS by executing the following command and you are ready to access Open NMS using the default port 8980.

systemctl start opennms

 Final Steps

  1. Open in your browser http://<ip-or-fqdn-of-your-server>:8980/opennms

  2. Login with with admin/admin

  3. Click in main navigation menu on "admin → Change Password → Change Password"

  4. Set as current password admin and set a new password and confirm your newly set password

  5. Click "Submit"

  6. Logout and login with your new password


Jan 06
Lindsey Software LSSREPORTS.EXE Locked or Access Denied

Issue: Users are having issues with Lindsey software reports. Lindsey/MRI support may ask you to replace the file. When you look in the \LAC\PGMS folder, the report executable file LSSREPORTS.EXE cannot be copied, pasted, moved or renamed due to permissions. The file may not even be viewable from the Windows file browser due to permission restrictions.

When running icacls command against the file, you get a permission denied error.

Resolution: I was unable to determine the root cause but was able to fix the issue by closing the open files.

Using the computer manager, I did notice that two users had the file open and locked.


Right click on each open file session and select Close Open File until all lssreports.exe open files are cleared.

Oct 11
Adding META tags, keywords and other SEO Functionality to a Sharepoint Web Site

Many businesses use Sharepoint for Intranet functionality but few use it as public facing Web sites. Sharepoint can be a GREAT public Web site due to it’s advanced features and content management. One of the problems with Sharepoint being used OOB for public Web is the SEO functionality. Sharepoint content does not index well with search engines out of the box, but this can be changed relatively easily.

Search engines give a lot of weight to the title of a site. In Sharepoint, the site title is found in the site settings –> title, descriptions and logo link.


Set as ‘home’ by default, you edit edit the title of the site to something that will draw traffic to your site. Keep in mind that the title will also be the home page link of your navigation menu, so keep it simple.


Sharepoint has SEO features that allow you to add keywords, but this feature is only available for publishing pages. You may find this feature greyed out (disabled).


You can still add keyword using meta tags by navigating to site settings –> search engine optimization settings. Tick the radio button to include meta tags and add your keywords tag using the following syntax:

<meta name="keywords" content="keyword1, keyword2, etc"/>


When Sharpoint renders the page code, you will see the tags.


Oct 03
How to Expand Linux Univention Default Disk Partition–UCS

The UCS default disk partition when installed from an OVA image is a paltry 49GB. This should be expanded in order to avoid running out of disk space, especially if you have installed applications such as OXMail, NextCloud or other applications where large data can be stored.

In VMWARE, edit the virtual machine and add a secondary disk as shown below.


Once the disk has been added, follow the instructions on the UCS/Scheinig KB below to expand the volume.

Use the sudo lsblk command to locate the disk (in this case sdb)


Use cfdisk  to partition the disk as a GPT volume.

sudo cfdisk /dev/sdb

Use vgextend to extend the volume

sudo vgextend vg_ucs /dev/sdb1
Use lvextend to resize the root
sudo lvextend -l +100%FREE /dev/mapper/vg_ucs-root
Use resize2fs to resize the disk
sudo resize2fs -p /dev/mapper/vg_ucs-root

Jul 27
Avaya IP Phones Add Scope Option for Sonicwall DHCP

DHCP Scope for Avaya 9608 Telephones Requires Option 242. This option tells the 9608 IP phones what the IP address of the IP Office is.

Configuring Option 242 in Sonicwall DHCP

Open Sonicwall DHCP


Click to edit the DHCP scope


In the advanced tab, click to create a generic DHCP scope option


Give the option a frienly name and select option number 242 and option type String.



Obviously, replace the above IP address to that of the IP office on your LAN.

Jul 17
Setting up an RSS Feed as a Web Part in SharePoint

In this post I will show you how to

  • Set up an RSS Feed in SharePoint
  • Fix common error: “The requested RSS feed could not be displayed. Please verify the settings and URL for this feed.”
  • Import SSL certificates into SharePoint

Adding an RSS Feed into a SharePoint Page

To add an RSS feed to SharePoint, open a Sharepoint page, add an RSS Web part from Content Rollup category as shown below.


Click to open the  tool pane and set the RSS URL.


Enter the feed URL including the https:// prefix. Note: If you still have trouble viewing the feed, make sure there is no trailing white space before or after the URL if you have copied and pasted.


Your RSS page  should now display properly.



Fixing the Error: The requested RSS feed could not be displayed. Please Verify the Settings and URL for this Feed

If you have tried to set up an RSS feed in Sharepoint and have received the error: “The requested RSS feed could not be displayed. Please verify the settings and URL for this feed.” it may be caused by trailing URL whitespace or the lack of trailing forward slash.

  • Check  the RSS URL for trailing whitespace and remove it
  • Check that the HTTPS:// prefix is included in the RSS URL
  • Make sure there is a trailing forward slash at the ned of the URL

Move your cursor to the end of the URL and use the right arrow key to try to move to the right of the last letter. If you can move, then you have trailing whitespace in the URL from the copy/paste operation. Remove any whitespace and make sure that the RSS feed URL send with a forward slash “/” as shown below. Not having the slash in place can prevent the RSS for working.


Importing and SSL Certiciate into SharePoint

If you got here because you were interested in importing an SSL certificate, you can find the information below. Please noe that as long as you are displaying an RSS feed that’s using a publicly trusted certificate, you do not need to import it into SharePoint.

To import an SSL certificate into SharePoint, open explorer as an administrator.


Find the Web site feed you are interested in and navigate to the page.


Click on the lock icon to view the certificate.


Go to the certificate details tab and select copy to file.


Export the certificate as DER encoded binary X.509.


Give them a friendly name and make sure you have them saved where they are accessible from SP Central Administration.


Open SharePoint Central Administration, navigate to Security –> Manage Trust.

Click new, then give your certificate a friendly name and use the browse button to locate the CER file.


Click OK to import it. You can repeat this step for all your web site certificates.


Jul 09
Move the DFS Namespace to Another Server

The process to move DFSR from one server to another is pretty straight forward: add another namespace server then remove DFS namespace from the original server.

A DFS namespace server is a server that allows clients to conenct to DFS shares via the DFS namespace. The DFS namespace is usually a UNS path that looks like this, assuming DFS was set up in a domain.


When clienst conenct to the Namespace UNC path, the server will direct them to a shared folder across the DFS server, based on availability and cost. If you plan on removing the server that hosts the namespace, you will need to move the namespace service to another server or the DFS will stop referring clients.

To move the DFS namespace, install DFS Namespace service on the server that will be the new namespace server.


Once it’s installed and functioning, right click on the namespace and add namespace server.


Enter the NETBIOS name of the new namespace server.


Click on the namespace tab and you should now have two namespace servers.


Delete the original namespace server to complete the move.

Jul 05
How to Use the Falcon IT Services Trouble Ticket System

The easiest way to create a ticket is to send an email to helpdesk –@-

Once a ticket is created, you will receive an email confirmation and ticket number. You may reply to emails containing the ticket number to communicate with the technician that is working on your ticket. You can also log in to our trouble ticket system by visiting our Web site.

When you log in to the trouble ticket system, you can view current and past tickets, communicate with the technician and get updates on the work performed and/or ticket status.

Loggin in to the Trouble Ticket System

Vitis, click on support, then click on the trouble ticket icon.


1. To create a ticket, click on the + sign at the bottom of the screen.
2. Tickets shown in green have been completed
3. Tickets shown in yellow are in progress

Click on any ticket to view status, notes or to add information to it.


Jun 24
FalconCloud Open XChange Server Settings for iPhone, Android & IMAP E-Mail Client

The settings below can be used to connect your IOS or Android SmartPhone as well as Outlook, Thunderbird or other Email client software.

To configure Falconcloud e-mail on your phone, you will need to know three things:

  • Your user name
  • Your e-mail address
  • Your password

You can test whether or not you have the correct info by loggin in to the Falconcloud Webmail portal. if you cannot log in successfully, please contact the helpdesk. If you know the correct user name and password, you can set up falconcloud E-mail on your device by using the information below. Please note that both the user name and password are case sensitive.


  • Tap settings –> Mail/Contacts/Calendar –> Add Account –> Other –> Mail Account.
  • Enter your name, email address and password. Esure that IMAP is selected.
  • Enter the inbound server address, user name and password.
  • Enter the outbound server address, user name and password.
  • Tap next, then save.


  • Tap settings –> Accounts –> Add Acocunts –> Email –> enter your email address and tap next.
  • Choose IMAP from the account type screen and tap next.
  • In the incoming settings, enter the IMAP server address, user name and password.
  • In the outbound settings, enter the SMTP server address, user name and password.
  • In the next screen, select your preferences for sync interval, storage limits and other settings.
Type Protocol Security Port Address/URL
Outbound/SMTP Server SMTP TLS 587
Inbound/IMAP Server IMAP SSL 993
CalDAV 443
CardDAV 443

1 - 10Next
Managed IT Services & Helpdesk

 ‭(Hidden)‬ Blog Tools