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Showing 1 - 16 of 32 white papers, page 1 of 2.
User Profile and Environment Management with ProfileUnity
This whitepaper has been authored by experts at Liquidware in order to provide guidance to adopters of desktop virtualization technologies. In this paper, we outline how ProfileUnity was designed to address many of the shortcomings of Roaming Profiles, and basic profile management tools that are just a step away from roaming profiles, in managing user profiles and user-authored data over multiple desktop platforms, including physical upgrades and refreshes, Windows migrations and more.
User Profile Management on Microsoft Windows desktops continues to provide challenges.  Most Administrators find that Roaming Profiles and even Microsoft UEV generally fall short due to several factors. Profile Corruption, Lack of Customization, and lack of Enterprise Features are just some of the top shortcomings of Microsoft Windows profile management with these options.

Basic tools such as roaming profiles do not support a mixed operating environment, therefore it does not allow users to move among desktops with mixed profile versions, e.g. Windows 7, Windows 10, Server2008, 2012 r2, etc.

The lack of support of mixed OS versions makes Microsoft profile management methods a serious hindrance when upgrading/migrating operating systems. Microsoft profile management tools also only support very limited granular management, so admins do not have the ability to exclude bloated areas of a user profile or to include files and registry keys outside of the profile. Profile bloat is one of the number one reasons for long logon times on Windows desktops.

Most organizations who will upgrade from a previous Windows® OS, such as Windows 7, to Windows 10, will want the flexibility to move at their own pace and upgrade machines on a departmental or ‘as needed’ basis.  As a result, management of Microsoft profiles and migration become a huge challenge for these environments because neither operation is seamlessly supported or functional between the two operating systems.  

A user’s profile consists of nearly everything needed to provide a personalized user experience within Windows.  If one could separate out the user profile from Windows and enable dynamic profiles that can adapt to any Windows OS version, several advantages can be realized:
  • User state can be stored separately and delivered just-in-time to enable workers to roam from workspace to workspace
  • Users’ profiles can co-exist in mixed OS environments or automatically migrate from one OS to the next, making OS upgrades easy and essentially irrelevant during a point-in-time upgrade
  • Integral policies and self-managed settings, such as local and network printer management, as well as security policies, can be readily restored in the event of a PC failure or loss (disaster recovery)
Given the growing complexity and diversity of Windows desktops technologies, today’s desktop administrators are looking for better ways to manage user profiles across the ever-increasing spectrum of desktop platforms available. In this whitepaper, we will cover the issues inherent with Roaming Profiles and how ProfileUnity addresses these issues.
The Definitive Guide to Monitoring Virtual Environments
The virtualization of physical computers has become the backbone of public and private cloud computing from desktops to data centers, enabling organizations to optimize hardware utilization, enhance security, support multi-tenancy and more. These environments are complex and ephemeral, creating requirements and challenges beyond the capability of traditional monitoring tools that were originally designed for static physical environments. But modern solutions exist, and can bring your virtual env

OVERVIEW

The virtualization of physical computers has become the backbone of public and private cloud computing from desktops to data centers, enabling organizations to optimize hardware utilization, enhance security, support multi-tenancy and more. These environments are complex and ephemeral, creating requirements and challenges beyond the capability of traditional monitoring tools that were originally designed for static physical environments. But modern solutions exist, and can bring your virtual environment to new levels of efficiency, performance and scale.

This guide explains the pervasiveness of virtualized environments in modern data centers, the demand these environments create for more robust monitoring and analytics solutions, and the keys to getting the most out of virtualization deployments.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

·        History and Expansion of Virtualized Environments

·        Monitoring Virtual Environments

·        Approaches to Monitoring

·        Why Effective Virtualization Monitoring Matters

·        A Unified Approach to Monitoring Virtualized Environments

·        5 Key Capabilities for Virtualization Monitoring

o   Real-Time Awareness

o   Rapid Root-Cause Analytics

o   End-to-End Visibility

o   Complete Flexibility

o   Hypervisor Agnosticism

·        Evaluating a Monitoring Solution

o   Unified View

o   Scalability

o   CMDB Support

o   Converged Infrastructure

o   Licensing

·        Zenoss for Virtualization Monitoring

UNC Health Care Leverages IGEL in Virtual Desktop Infrastructure Deployment
UNC Health Care selected IGEL Universal Desktop Converter (UDC) and IGEL Universal Management Suite (UMS) for simplicity, cost-savings and security. This document outlines key findings on how IGEL helps organizations manage entire fleets of thin clients from a single console. In addition, you will see how IGEL Universal Desktop Converter provides IT organizations with the flexibility they need to convert any compatible thin client, desktop or laptop computer into an IGEL thin client solution, wi

UNC Health Care selects IGEL Universal Desktop Converter (UDC) and IGEL Universal Management Suite (UMS) for simplicity, cost-savings and security.

“The need to provide users with access to their desktops from any device anywhere, anytime is driving a growing number of IT organizations to migrate toward VDI environments,” said Simon Clephan, Vice President of Business Development and Strategic Alliances, IGEL. “One of the key advantages that IGEL brings to the table is the simplicity that comes from being able to manage an entire fleet of thin clients from a single console. Additionally, the IGEL Universal Desktop Converter provides IT organizations with the flexibility they need to convert any compatible thin client, desktop or laptop computer into an IGEL thin client solution, without having to make an upfront investment in new hardware to support their virtualized infrastructures.” 

UNC Health Care selected the IGEL UDC and UMS software for its Citrix VDI deployment following a “bake-off” between thin client solutions. “IGEL won hands down due the simplicity and superiority of its management capabilities,” said James Cole, Technical Architect, UNC Health Care. “And, because the IGEL UDC software is designed to quickly and efficiently convert existing endpoint hardware into IGEL Linux OS-powered thin clients, we knew that by selecting the IGEL solution we would also realize a significant reduction in our capital expenditures.”

Since initiating the deployment of the IGEL UDC and UMS software, UNC Health Care has also experienced significant time savings. “Prior to deploying the IGEL UDC and UMS software, it took our team 25-30 minutes to create a virtual image on each system, not counting the personalization of the system for each use case, now that process takes less than 10 minutes, and even less time when converting the system to VDI roaming,” added Cole.

Additionally, the ease of integration between the IGEL UDC and IGEL UMS with Citrix XenDesktop and other solutions offered by Citrix Ecosystem partners, including Imprivata, has enabled secure access to the health care network’s Epic Systems’ Electronic Medical Records (EMR) system.

Solution Guide for Sennheiser Headsets, IGEL Endpoints and Skype for Business on Citrix VDI
Topics: IGEL, Citrix, skype, VDI
Enabling voice and video with a bundled solution in an existing Citrix environment delivers clearer and crisper voice and video than legacy phone systems. This solution guide describes how Sennheiser headsets combine with Citrix infrastructure and IGEL endpoints to provide a better, more secure user experience. It also describes how to deploy the bundled Citrix-Sennheiser-IGEL solution.

Virtualizing Windows applications and desktops in the data center or cloud has compelling security, mobility and management benefits, but delivering real-time voice and video in a virtual environment is a challenge. A poorly optimized implementation can increase costs and compromise user experience. Server scalability and bandwidth efficiency may be less than optimal, and audio-video quality may be degraded.

Enabling voice and video with a bundled solution in an existing Citrix environment delivers clearer and crisper voice and video than legacy phone systems. This solution guide describes how Sennheiser headsets combine with Citrix infrastructure and IGEL endpoints to provide a better, more secure user experience. It also describes how to deploy the bundled Citrix-Sennheiser-IGEL solution.

Monitoring 201: Moving Beyond Simplistic Monitoring and Alerts to Monitoring Glory
Are you ready to achieve #monitoringglory?

Are you ready to achieve #monitoringglory?

After reading this e-book, "Monitoring 201", you will:

  • Be able to imagine and create meaningful and actionable monitors and alerts
  • Understand how to explain the value of monitoring to non-technical coworkers
  • Focus on productive work because you will not be interrupted by spurious alerts
It's Automation, Not Art
It’s Automation, Not Art Learn how to simplify application monitoring with this free eBook.
We recently reached out to IT professionals to find out what they thought about monitoring and managing their environment.  From the survey, we learned that automation was at the top of everyone's wish list.
 
This guide was written to provide an overview on automation as it relates to monitoring.  It was designed specifically for those familiar with computers and IT, who know what monitoring is capable of, and who may or may not have hands-on experience with monitoring software.
How Parallels RAS Enhances Microsoft RDS
In 2001, Microsoft introduced the RDP protocol that allowed users to access an operating system’s desktop remotely. Since then, Microsoft has developed the Microsoft Remote Desktop Services (RDS) to facilitate remote desktop access. However, Microsoft RDS leaves a lot to be desired. This white paper highlights the pain points of RDS solutions, and how systems administrators can use Parallels® Remote Application Server (RAS) to enhance their Microsoft RDS infrastructure.

In 2001, Microsoft introduced the RDP protocol that allowed users to access an operating system’s desktop remotely. Since then, Microsoft has developed the Microsoft Remote Desktop Services (RDS) to facilitate remote desktop access.

However, Microsoft RDS leaves a lot to be desired. This white paper highlights the pain points of RDS solutions, and how systems administrators can use Parallels Remote Application Server (RAS) to enhance their Microsoft RDS infrastructure.

Microsoft RDS Pain Points:
•    Limited Load Balancing Functionality
•    Limited Client Device Support
•    Difficult to Install, Set Up, and Update

Parallels RAS is an application and virtual desktop delivery solution that allows systems administrators to create a private cloud from which they can centrally manage the delivery of applications, virtual desktops, and business-critical data. This comprehensive VDI solution is well known for its ease of use, low license costs, and feature list.

How Parallels RAS Enhances Your Microsoft RDS Infrastructure:
•    Easy to Install and Set Up
•    Centralized Configuration Console
•    Auto-Configuration of Remote Desktop Session Hosts
•    High Availability Load Balancing (HALB)
•    Superior user experience on mobile devices
•    Supports hypervisors from Citrix, VMware, Microsoft’s own Hyper-V, Nutanix Acropolis, and Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM)

As this white paper highlights, Parallels RAS allows you to enhance your Microsoft Remote Desktop Services infrastructure, enabling you to offer a superior application and virtual desktop delivery solution.

Built around Microsoft’s RDP protocol, Parallels RAS allows systems administrators to do more in less time with fewer resources. Since it is easier to implement and use, systems administrators can manage and easily scale up the Parallels RAS farm without requiring any specialized training. Because of its extensive feature list and multisite support, they can build solutions that meet the requirements of any enterprise, regardless of its size and scale.

PCI DSS Compliance
IT security has always been a major concern for businesses that accept online credit card payments. They hold sensitive information that malicious hackers are after: cardholder data and customer information. This is why businesses are legally obliged to build PCI DSS compliant IT infrastructures.

IT security has always been a major concern for businesses that accept online credit card payments. They hold sensitive information that malicious hackers are after: cardholder data. This is why such businesses are legally obliged to build IT systems and networks that are PCI DSS compliant.

What Is PCI DSS?
PCI DSS is a security standard developed by the PCI Security Standards Council. Designed for businesses that do online transactions and hold customers’ payment records, it helps them build and maintain secure IT systems and networks, ensuring the privacy and security of their customers’ credit-card details and cardholder data.

The set of standards defined in the PCI DSS are the minimum required level of computer systems security that must be in place when processing credit-card data. These standards apply to merchants, processors, financial institutions, service providers, and any other entity that store, process, or transmit credit-card and cardholder information.

Why Businesses Need to Be PCI DSS Compliant
The challenges of building and maintaining a PCI DSS–compliant network are many and depend on several factors—for example, the type of software used, the network setup, and the procedures in place. If organizations that process credit-card payments and store cardholder details fail to build PCI DSS–compliant networks and computer systems, they risk being fined up to $500,000 per month—or even worse, having their trading licence revoked.

This white paper explains how using Parallels Remote Application Server (RAS) can help organizations build scalable PCI DSS–compliant networks and also save on costs and administration overheads.

PrinterLogic and IGEL Enable Healthcare Organizations to Deliver Better Patient Outcomes
Healthcare professionals need to print effortlessly and reliably to nearby or appropriate printers within virtual environments, and PrinterLogic and IGEL can help make that an easy, reliable process—all while efficiently maintaining the protection of confidential patient information.

Many organizations have turned to virtualizing user endpoints to help reduce capital and operational expenses while increasing security. This is especially true within healthcare, where hospitals, clinics, and urgent care centers seek to offer the best possible patient outcomes while adhering to a variety of mandated patient security and information privacy requirements.

With the movement of desktops and applications into the secure data center or cloud, the need for reliable printing of documents, some very sensitive in nature, remains a constant that can be challenging when desktops are virtual but the printing process remains physical. Directing print jobs to the correct printer with the correct physical access rights in the correct location while ensuring compliance with key healthcare mandates like the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Healthcare Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) is critical.

Healthcare IT needs to keep pace with these requirements and the ongoing printing demands of healthcare. Medical professionals need to print effortlessly and reliably to nearby or appropriate printers within virtual environments, and PrinterLogic and IGEL can help make that an easy, reliable process—all while efficiently maintaining the protection of confidential patient information. By combining PrinterLogic’s enterprise print management software with centrally managed direct IP printing and IGEL’s software-defined thin client endpoint management, healthcare organizations can:

  • Reduce capital and operational costs
  • Support virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) and electronic medical records (EMR) systems effectively
  • Centralize and simplify print management
  • Add an essential layer of security from the target printer all the way to the network edge
Gartner Market Guide for IT Infrastructure Monitoring Tools
With the onset of more modular and cloud-centric architectures, many organizations with disparate monitoring tools are reassessing their monitoring landscape. According to Gartner, hybrid IT (especially with IaaS subscription) enterprises must adopt more holistic IT infrastructure monitoring tools (ITIM) to gain visibility into their IT landscapes.

With the onset of more modular and cloud-centric architectures, many organizations with disparate monitoring tools are reassessing their monitoring landscape. According to Gartner, hybrid IT (especially with IaaS subscription) enterprises must adopt more holistic IT infrastructure monitoring tools (ITIM) to gain visibility into their IT landscapes.

The guide provides insight into the IT infrastructure monitoring tool market and providers as well as key findings and recommendations.

Get the 2018 Gartner Market Guide for IT Infrastructure Monitoring Tools to see:

  • The ITIM market definition, direction and analysis
  • A list of representative ITIM vendors
  • Recommendations for adoption of ITIM platforms

Key Findings Include:

  • ITIM tools are helping organizations simplify and unify monitoring across domains within a single tool, eliminating the problems of multitool integration.
  • ITIM tools are allowing infrastructure and operations (I&O) leaders to scale across hybrid infrastructures and emerging architectures (such as containers and microservices).
  • Metrics and data acquired by ITIM tools are being used to derive context enabling visibility for non-IT teams (for example, line of business [LOB] and app owners) to help achieve optimization targets.
vSphere Troubleshooting Guide
Troubleshooting complex virtualization technology is something all VMware users will have to face at some point. It requires an understanding of how various components fit together and finding a place to start is not easy. Thankfully, VMware vExpert Ryan Birk is here to help with this eBook preparing you for any problems you may encounter along the way.

This eBook explains how to identify problems with vSphere and how to solve them. Before we begin, we need to start off with an introduction to a few things that will make life easier. We’ll start with a troubleshooting methodology and how to gather logs. After that, we’ll break this eBook into the following sections: Installation, Virtual Machines, Networking, Storage, vCenter/ESXi and Clustering.

ESXi and vSphere problems arise from many different places, but they generally fall into one of these categories: Hardware issues, Resource contention, Network attacks, Software bugs, and Configuration problems.

A typical troubleshooting process contains several tasks: 1. Define the problem and gather information. 2. Identify what is causing the problem. 3. Fix the problem, implement a fix.

One of the first things you should try to do when experiencing a problem with a host, is try to reproduce the issue. If you can find a way to reproduce it, you have a great way to validate that the issue is resolved when you do fix it. It can be helpful as well to take a benchmark of your systems before they are implemented into a production environment. If you know HOW they should be running, it’s easier to pinpoint a problem.

You should decide if it’s best to work from a “Top Down” or “Bottom Up” approach to determine the root cause. Guest OS Level issues typically cause a large amount of problems. Let’s face it, some of the applications we use are not perfect. They get the job done but they utilize a lot of memory doing it.

In terms of virtual machine level issues, is it possible that you could have a limit or share value that’s misconfigured? At the ESXi Host Level, you could need additional resources. It’s hard to believe sometimes, but you might need another host to help with load!

Once you have identified the root cause, you should assess the impact of the problem on your day to day operations. When and what type of fix should you implement? A short-term one or a long-term solution? Assess the impact of your solution on daily operations. Short-term solution: Implement a quick workaround. Long-term solution: Reconfiguration of a virtual machine or host.

Now that the basics have been covered, download the eBook to discover how to put this theory into practice!

Mastering vSphere – Best Practices, Optimizing Configurations & More
Do you regularly work with vSphere? If so, this free eBook is for you. Learn how to leverage best practices for the most popular features contained within the vSphere platform and boost your productivity using tips and tricks learnt direct from an experienced VMware trainer and highly qualified professional. In this eBook, vExpert Ryan Birk shows you how to master: Advanced Deployment Scenarios using Auto-Deploy Shared Storage Performance Monitoring and Troubleshooting Host Network configurati

If you’re here to gather some of the best practices surrounding vSphere, you’ve come to the right place! Mastering vSphere: Best Practices, Optimizing Configurations & More, the free eBook authored by me, Ryan Birk, is the product of many years working with vSphere as well as teaching others in a professional capacity. In my extensive career as a VMware consultant and teacher (I’m a VMware Certified Instructor) I have worked with people of all competence levels and been asked hundreds - if not thousands - of questions on vSphere. I was approached to write this eBook to put that experience to use to help people currently working with vSphere step up their game and reach that next level. As such, this eBook assumes readers already have a basic understanding of vSphere and will cover the best practices for four key aspects of any vSphere environment.

The best practices covered here will focus largely on management and configuration solutions so should remain relevant for quite some time. However, with that said, things are constantly changing in IT, so I would always recommend obtaining the most up-to-date information from VMware KBs and official documentation especially regarding specific versions of tools and software updates. This eBook is divided into several sections, and although I would advise reading the whole eBook as most elements relate to others, you might want to just focus on a certain area you’re having trouble with. If so, jump to the section you want read about.

Before we begin, I want to note that in a VMware environment, it’s always best to try to keep things simple. Far too often I have seen environments be thrown off the tracks by trying to do too much at once. I try to live by the mentality of “keeping your environment boring” – in other words, keeping your host configurations the same, storage configurations the same and network configurations the same. I don’t mean duplicate IP addresses, but the hosts need identical port groups, access to the same storage networks, etc. Consistency is the name of the game and is key to solving unexpected problems down the line. Furthermore, it enables smooth scalability - when you move from a single host configuration to a cluster configuration, having the same configurations will make live migrations and high availability far easier to configure without having to significantly re-work the entire infrastructure. Now the scene has been set, let’s get started!

Forrester: Monitoring Containerized Microservices - Elevate Your Metrics
As enterprises continue to rapidly adopt containerized microservices, infrastructure and operations (I&O) teams need to address the growing complexities of monitoring these highly dynamic and distributed applications. The scale of these environments can pose tremendous monitoring challenges. This report will guide I&O leaders in what to consider when developing their technology and metric strategies for monitoring microservices and container-based applications.
As enterprises continue to rapidly adopt containerized microservices, infrastructure and operations (I&O) teams need to address the growing complexities of monitoring these highly dynamic and distributed applications. The scale of these environments can pose tremendous monitoring challenges. This report will guide I&O leaders in what to consider when developing their technology and metric strategies for monitoring microservices and container-based applications.
How to Get the Most Out of Windows Admin Center
Windows Admin Center is the future of Windows and Windows Server management. Are you using it to its full potential? In this free eBook, Microsoft Cloud and Datacenter Management MVP, Eric Siron, has put together a 70+ page guide on what Windows Admin Center brings to the table, how to get started, and how to squeeze as much value out of this incredible free management tool from Microsoft. This eBook covers: - Installation - Getting Started - Full UI Analysis - Security - Managing Extensions

Each version of Windows and Windows Server showcases new technologies. The advent of PowerShell marked a substantial step forward in managing those features. However, the built-in graphical Windows management tools have largely stagnated - the same basic Microsoft Management Console (MMC) interfaces had remained since Windows Server 2000. Microsoft tried out multiple overhauls over the years to the built-in Server Manager console but gained little traction. Until Windows Admin Center.

WHAT IS WINDOWS ADMIN CENTER?
Windows Admin Center (WAC) represents a modern turn in Windows and Windows Server system management. From its home page, you establish a list of the networked Windows and Windows Server computers to manage. From there, you can connect to an individual system to control components such as hardware drivers. You can also use it to manage Windows roles, such as Hyper-V.

On the front-end, Windows Admin Center is presented through a sleek HTML 5 web interface. On the back-end, it leverages PowerShell extensively to control the systems within your network. The entire package runs on a single system, so you don’t need a complicated infrastructure to support it. In fact, you can run it locally on your Windows 10 workstation if you want. If you require more resiliency, you can run Windows Admin Center as a role on a Microsoft Failover Cluster.

WHY WOULD I USE WINDOWS ADMIN CENTER?
In the modern era of Windows management, we have shifted to a greater reliance on industrial-strength tools like PowerShell and Desired State Configuration. However, we still have servers that require individualized attention and infrequently utilized resources. WAC gives you a one-stop hub for dropping in on any system at any time and work with almost any of its facets.

ABOUT THIS EBOOK
This eBook has been written by Microsoft Cloud & Datacenter Management MVP Eric Siron. Eric has worked in IT since 1998, designing, deploying, and maintaining server, desktop, network, and storage systems. He has provided all levels of support for businesses ranging from single-user through enterprises with thousands of seats. He has achieved numerous Microsoft certifications and was a Microsoft Certified Trainer for four years. Eric is also a seasoned technology blogger and has amassed a significant following through his top-class work on the Altaro Hyper-V Dojo.

Digital Workspace Disasters and How to Beat Them
Desktop DR - the recovery of individual desktop systems from a disaster or system failure - has long been a challenge. Part of the problem is that there are so many desktops, storing so much valuable data and - unlike servers - with so many different end user configurations and too little central control. Imaging everyone would be a huge task, generating huge amounts of backup data.
Desktop DR - the recovery of individual desktop systems from a disaster or system failure - has long been a challenge. Part of the problem is that there are so many desktops, storing so much valuable data and - unlike servers - with so many different end user configurations and too little central control. Imaging everyone would be a huge task, generating huge amounts of backup data. And even if those problems could be overcome with the use of software agents, plus de-deduplication to take common files such as the operating system out of the backup window, restoring damaged systems could still mean days of software reinstallation and reconfiguration. Yet at the same time, most organizations have a strategic need to deploy and provision new desktop systems, and to be able to migrate existing ones to new platforms. Again, these are tasks that benefit from reducing both duplication and the need to reconfigure the resulting installation. The parallels with desktop DR should be clear. We often write about the importance of an integrated approach to investing in backup and recovery. By bringing together business needs that have a shared technical foundation, we can, for example, gain incremental benefits from backup, such as improved data visibility and governance, or we can gain DR capabilities from an investment in systems and data management. So it is with desktop DR and user workspace management. Both of these are growing in importance as organizations’ desktop estates grow more complex. Not only are we adding more ways to work online, such as virtual PCs, more applications, and more layers of middleware, but the resulting systems face more risks and threats and are subject to higher regulatory and legal requirements. Increasingly then, both desktop DR and UWM will be not just valuable, but essential. Getting one as an incremental bonus from the other therefore not only strengthens the business case for that investment proposal, it is a win-win scenario in its own right.
Taking Steps to Prevent Your Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Plans from Being Derailed
With so many moving pieces involved in business continuity and disaster recovery planning, anticipating the downstream impact of new SAN arrays, hyperconverged systems, and disaster recovery site relocation is increasingly more difficult. Download this white paper to learn how DataCore™ SDS services help you adapt your safeguards accordingly in the face of these common initiatives.

With so many moving pieces involved in business continuity and disaster recovery planning, anticipating the downstream impact of new SAN arrays, hyperconverged systems, and disaster recovery site relocation is increasingly more difficult. Download this white paper to learn how DataCore SDS services help you adapt your safeguards accordingly in the face of these common initiatives and business challenges:

•    Storage Array Replacement
•    Mergers and Acquisitions
•    Cloud Replication
•    Hyperconverged Infrastructure
•    Multi-Site Metro Cluster

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