Monday, 16 May 2016

New Trainee: Khatelay Sheriff

My name is Khatelay D. Sheriff. 

I'm a Mauritanian born Liberian. I was born unto the union of Mr & Mrs Sheriff in a small village called Bolahun in Lofa County. 

I gained my high school education at the College of West Africa (CWA ). 

In 2010 the same year I enrolled at AMITY UNIVERSITY, Uttar Pradish of India studying for BSC in I.T. After a successful three years of study, I got my first major university degree (BSC) in Information Technology (I.T) in 2013.

I was assigned to do my internship with cellcom GSM Liberia but it was unfortunate that I couldn't materialise the opportunity due to some family engagement. 

I worked for Right to Play for few months & resigned as an I.T administrator to help manage a family business. 

I worked as an assistant manager for four years & resigned in 2016 to pursued my career in the I.T field. 

As a youngster, I really used to love everything about radio, from fixing & repairing FM radios to even dreaming of being a radio announcer. 

In 2009, after finishing the national examination test I needed to wait for three months for the examination results and the exam results was very important because it's based on the outcome of the results that will determine my university career. The wait was too long so I decided to take computer classes to get familiar with the basic computer knowledge and that was when I became more passionate about doing advanced courses. 

However, it all started with technology. Like many young people out there, I went through different phases in life. I love innovation & I can't do without social media in this 21 century. I love to visit I.T companies sites to get updates about new inventions. 

On April 10, 2016, I visited New Africa Technology Company (NATC) website, one of Liberia's best & leading IT service provider. 

I applied for an entry level position. 

What motivates me more is the level of the exceptional team at the company. 

I'm a detail-oriented, organised and self-sufficient person. 

I see myself as a respectful, trustworthy and hard working person. 

I believe knowledge is power and I'm ready to take instructions from my bosses & my colleagues to share and achieve New Africa Technology Company's (NATC) goals. 

I'm very pleased to work for NATC as trainee, once again thank the entire team for giving me the opportunity, I'm eager to make possible contributions for the company.

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Ladies who run NATC

Here's a picture of the ladies of NATC and I would like to pay a tribute to the women who help things to run smoothly. 

Musu Freeman is my daughter Kavita's Nanny but she's also our Office Assistant. She came on board last year around May or June. She's helped us with filing, cleaning, checking the generator's fuel level, marking LEC readings, running between the residence and office, and, even goes to buy fuel for both our generators. She brings me endless cups of tea, too. She is extremely efficient and, without her, things are slow because no one knows how to do what she does so quietly without making the fuss that guys do! 

Rita is our Trainee and she's joined NATC in September or October last year 2015. She's helped out with regular maintenance, call outs, and installations. She's been handling the Prisons Software project solo. And, of course, she helps with office cleaning and guests too.

And, then there's Kavita without whom our office would be dull, cheerless and boring.  

Here's to the women of NATC!

Left to right: Musu (Nanny/Office Assistant), Rita (IT Trainee), Kavita (Chief Techie) and Farzana (CEO)

Monday, 9 May 2016

Installation of Server 2012 Active Directory

Dear readers,

I am studying (MCSA Server 2008) but is quite exciting to know that technology is getting advance every day.

During the beginning of April last month, we give a recommendation to one of our clients to backup all data from the server and reload a new (OS) Operating System. The client agreed and scheduled a day for us. We got on site with our software and was ready to go but to my utmost surprise, our department head pulled out Window Server 2012 CDs from our software bag and this was how we carry on the installation. This was my first time installing Server 2012 and I was so eager to get familiar with the new features Microsoft has to offer in this OS.

On Installing a Windows 2012 Server and then promoting it as the first domain controller in a new Forest.  Even though the logical steps haven’t really changed dramatically since the introduction of Windows 2008, the interface has especially with the new look.  So let’s begin our journey with Windows Server 2012 as this will be the first of many articles on configuring different components that Windows Server 2012 has to offer.

Installing Windows Server 2012

The first step is to boot up from the CD or ISO image and select your language settings.

Select your Language and input options and then click on Next.

Click Install.

Select the operating system you want to install.  I have selected Windows Server 2012 Release Candidate Server with a GUI.  The other option is server core which was first introduced in Windows 2008 and is a minimal install with no GUI but provides remote management through Windows PowerShell and other tools.

Click Next. 

Accept the License terms by checking in the box below.

Click Next.

I am performing a new installation of Windows Server, so I had click on Custom.

Partition your drives and then click next.

The installation will eventually re-start your Windows Server where it will go through the final stages of preparing the environment for first time use.

You will eventually be prompted to enter a password for the built-in Administrator account.

Click Finish.

You will now be presented with the new Windows Login Screen, which is a fair change to what we have been accustomed to with previous releases of Windows Server.

Hit Ctrl – ALT – Delete to sign in, and enter your password.

You will be presented with the new Server Manager Screen which really simplifies the administration and configuration of your new server.  Our main goal for this article is to configure Active Directory and its related services such as DNS.

First thing I want to do is change the computer name.  Windows goes ahead and provides a default unique name in the form of WIN-<random characters>

To do so, from the Server Manager > Dashboard screen, click on Local Server and then click on the computer name hyperlink.

This will take you to the all familiar System Properties. 

Click Change, enter a more desirable Computer Name and then click OK.

You will then be prompted to restart your computer to apply the changes.  Click Ok and then Click on restart now.

After your computer has restarted, we will be presented with the Server Manager Screen.  Now we are ready to configure this server as an Active Directory Controller.

Adding the Active Directory Domain Services Role. 

From the Dashboard click on “Add roles and features”.  You will be presented with the “Before you begin screen.  Click Next.  In the “Installation Type” screen click on “Role-base or feature-based installation”.

Click Next.

You will be presented with the following screen asking you to select a destination server.  This is a new feature of Windows 2012 where you have the ability to deploy roles and features to remote servers and even offline virtual hard disks.

In our case, we are selecting the current server from the server pool.

Click Next.

We are now back in familiar territory (if you have worked with Windows 2008 Server) and we will select the “Active Directory Domain Services” and DNS Server if it hasn’t already been provisioned.

You will then be prompted to add features that are required for Active Directory Domain Services.

Click on Add Features.

Click Next.

If you want to add additional features, you can do so from the next screen, otherwise click Next.

You will now be presented with the Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS) screen outlining some information about AD DS and its requirements.  You will notice that DNS is a MUST and has always been the case.

Click next.

You are now provided with a summary of installation selections.

The installation will now begin.

Upon completion you will be presented with an installation succeeded message.

Click Close.

Back in Server Manager, you will notice that AD DS has been added to the left navigation tree.  Click on it and then click on ‘’More’’ on the right navigation pane where it states that Configuration is required for Active Directory Domain Services.

You will now be presented with the All Servers Task Details, in which you will click on Promote this server to a domain controller under Action.

The Deployment Configuration screen appears and we will select “Add a new forest” as this is the first domain controller.

Enter your Root domain name and then click ‘’Next’’.

The following screen will then appear in which you will enter and select your Domain Controller Options.

You will then get the below warning in which you can ignore for now.

Click Next.

The NetBIOS domain name will then be inputted automatically.  In the event of a conflict, it will suggest an alternative by appending the original name with a 0.

Click Next.
Confirm or change the locations of your database folder, log folder and SYSVOL folder.

Click Next.
Review your selections and then Click ‘’Next’’.

If all of the prerequisites checks have passed successfully, you will be able to click on Install to proceed.

Click Install.

The installation will now proceed and you will see the progress being displayed.

The computer will most likely restart on its own to complete the installation so don’t be alarmed if it does.  You will receive a brief warning advising so.

Upon restart, you should be able to login using your domain credentials for the user administrator.
So let’s add our first user!  We can do so via the new Active Directory Administrative Center or via the well known Active Directory Users and Computers.  For something different, lets try the former.
Once Server Manager has launched, click on Tools > Active Directory Administrative Center
You will be greeted with the below Welcome screen.

Click on your domain on the left navigation pane, (local)

Let’s begin by creating our first Organizational Unit that will house our corporate users (I am not a fan of using the default Users).  On the right navigation pane under Taks > <domain name> click on New and then select “Organizational Unit”.

Enter the mandatory details.

Click OK.

This will immediately create the Organizational Unit in the designated location.  Double click on your newly created Organizational Unit and on the left navigation pane, select New User.  The below screen appears in which you will fill in the necessary details.

Make sure you scroll down to the bottom and fill in all the necessary sections such as Groups, Profile Settings and Organization settings.

Once completed, Click OK.

Your newly created user will now be listed in the middle navigation pane.

As you can see it is relatively straight forward configuring your first domain controller in a new forest using Windows Server 2012, in particular if you have had experience with Windows Server 2008.

The team at New Africa Technology Company are proficient and certified with all version of Windows Server dating back to 2000, 2003, 2008 and 2012. 

by Daniel Collins

Thursday, 5 May 2016

Disrepair, Repairs, Maintenance and other daily headaches

Our green gate almost fell out and a couple of its wheels got dislodged from their rails. Here are photographs of the repairs. 

Repairs and maintenance takes up more time than one would like. One wonders why things go into disrepair so easily and often in Liberia. Is it use of sub standard materials or lack of skilled mechanics, plumbers and welders? Or, is it the harsh climate with 6 months of torrential rain and year-round humidity? 

It makes one wonder whether Liberia's architecture and building standards will improve and, even whether more innovative styles of building and materials will flourish that would align with the tropical climate and environment of Liberia.

Wednesday, 4 May 2016

Intro of Isaiah Yancy

by Isaiah Yancy

Hello there. My name is Isaiah Shad Yancy, also called DJ Zekie. Born and raised as a Liberian, I like music, reading and science.

I was born in Maryland County, Republic of Liberia, spent my early days running from political figures’ greed over money and power. Forced to be a refugee at an early age but determined to come back and build my home one day, I moved back to Monrovia in November 1995. I completed high school and University in Monrovia and had since been contributing to the society through music, arts, and teaching.

I am one of the founders of the new wave of Liberian music, HipCo.  I also contributed to the Ebola recovery period wherein a team of young Liberians, few prominent citizens and me developed and produced the concept of “Jue Kpeh” – The Ebola Recovery Song. The song was engineered, mixed and mastered by me and it featured a lot of talented Liberian artists. Having shared stage with international acts like Wizboy and Van Vicker, this gives my artistry a standardized essence.

I also contributed to education wherein I taught Chemistry and Mathematics at Assemblies of God Mission High School for two years and Chemistry and Biology at The Haywood Mission institute. Also did some Laboratory work with LABCHEM and UMU wherein contributing to science and research in Liberia.

I have worked in the entertainment business for a while; worked also in education & research and now I’m bringing all that experience to the IT world. I think New Africa Technology Company is the niche I have searched for my whole life. For the first time in Liberia, I have found a company that hires on merit basis alone, operates with schedule and sets the standard of a business operating in the 21st century. I always dream about working for a company that provides the opportunity for growth and development in young professionals. As a new member of the team, I hope to strive and climb the ranks professionally for the advancement of my career.

I love my team here.

NOTE: If it is worth adding; As my hobby, a radio station in Monrovia, Liberia, Hott 107.9 fm, currently airs my mix show every Tuesdays and Thursdays at 9pm – 12 midnight, GMT. The show can also be heard online: as the radio transmits online in real time.