11 (FREE!) Microsoft tools to make life easier

Tools that secure, automate, pinch pennies - including some for Windows 8

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Best Practices Analyzer

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Once you’ve got Windows Server 8 installed, make use of the Best Practices Analyzer tool that comes with it. It scans the server to make sure it’s configured to what are considered best practices – things that admins might know but over look. One example Microsoft cites: close all ports that aren’t necessary for the server to talk to just the network machines it needs to. The goal is to improve security, avoid conflicts and boost performance and reliability.

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