my development toolkit

My daily tool kit – IT gadgets and software – #vDM30in30

I have currently spent a lot of time visiting different customer sites and working with them to build up a picture of their environment and such. Usually with the aim to provide a design around architectural changes that we would recommend to move their environments forward.

So I thought I’d give a short list of some of my day-to-day tools, this isn’t a comprehensive list, and I spend most of my time working with VMware. So take this with a pinch of salt!


Wera 10000v Screwdriver set – Handy set of screwdrivers, I know most people opt for a multi-driver, but I’ve been on some sites where the cabling and power has been questionable. I wouldn’t say these are the toughest tip drivers around, but I’ve had them a few years and they have lasted.


iFixit Pro Tech kit – More for when I’m tinkering than actual work, I bought this because of the completeness of the kit, the quality is around 7.5/10, the tweezers ends are a little weak, but I’ve no real complaints.


Pen with an LED Torch on one end – So I got mine off a vendor as a giveaway at an event, but they are handy, especially when cable tracing, the pen for making your notes, the LED torch for seeing down those cracks and holes.

ok that’s the end of this bit before I bore you


AngryIPScanner – everyone has their favourite IP scanner, I usually end up using this one.


Dell DPACK – Ok it’s a partner tool, but pretty much everyone uses this as a quick way to get storage statistics over a 24 hour period. Dell have recently updated this tool, so you can run the 24 hour sessions multiple times and bring all that information together.


Microsoft Assessment and Planning (MAP) Toolkit – So this is the Microsoft one, it covers multiple area’s, but monitor all your servers and desktops, collate and manipulate that data for either server/desktop virtualisation, or moving those workloads into the (Azure) cloud. I’ve sometimes found issues with the consolidation report, but you can usually see through them and come to a reasonable assessment.

microsoft assessment and planning toolkit

RVTools – Quickly pull a lot of information out of vCenter/ESXi into an Excel spreadsheet, great for summarizing configured values such as all VMs memory and HDD space.


VMware Flings – There is too many great snippets of software to mention, but the community and VMware just keep producing great content to enhance the platform, so its worth checking this site every month!

vmwareflingsESXi Embedded Host Client Example

Microsoft Office Suite – Where would we be without the popular suite of tools, (yes I know there are alternatives). Mainly Word, Excel and Visio for me, which you can see certain uses in my how to document posts.

Microsoft Remote Administration Server Tools – Because I need to manage the various components, you can also right-click the tools and run as another user and connect to different domains. For some of them.

Bootable USB Creator – Various ones out there, I use LiLi due to a recommendation.

NotePad++ – For when you need something a little better than notepad, great for displaying large log files.


BareTail – Real time logging software, great for breaking down live logs and auto highlighting certain lines such as those with the word “error”. You could look at CMTrace which is free but part of the System Center Toolkit.

baretail example


VMwareHealthCheckScript – This one has to be my favourite script, I usually run it after every install, and again before any troubleshooting, as it shows you the in-depth configuration of your VMware estate. So I can easily pinpoint any customer made changes.

vCheck – Another fantastic script that started off for VMware, but has split out further. Great for daily summaries.

Carl Websters Scripts – A number of great scripts here, my favourite is the AD Inventory

SQL Power Doc – How do you document an SQL install and where do you start? Especially if you haven’t installed it yourself. Well this script is the answer, it provides brilliant deep dive of the inner configuration of SQL.

Get-Hyper-V Script – Occasionally I have to deal with Hyper-V, (when converting to VMware of course) so this script provides a nice collated output of the environment.

Well I hope that this helps someone out there.


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