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Exchange Cumulative Update breaks auditing

Wed, 01 Feb 2017 14:15:31 GMT
We have discovered earlier today that the latest Exchange cumulative updates released in December 2016 may be breaking Exchange auditing. We are currently testing the issue internally along with a few of our customers who have reported the same issue.  As of this time, installing the latest cumulative updates may break Exchange auditing which will break LOGbinder for Exchange.  Please visit our Knowledge Base for further details and steps to check if you are affected.

December 2016 LOGbinder Newsletter: New version of LOGbinder for SQL Server

Fri, 23 Dec 2016 10:48:01 GMT
In June 2016 Microsoft released SQL Server 2016 but due to a bug in their Exchange 2016 release, we wanted to make sure that we performed very extensive testing of this latest version of SQL Server and its new auditing features to make sure we didn’t discover any bugs there too.  We also performed very stringent testing of LOGbinder for SQL Server to make sure that our software continues to meet and exceed our internal standards.

With the release of SQL Server 2016 came not only many new features but also some new audit events. These include audit events related to committing and rollback of transactions, handling master keys, column encryption keys, database scoped credentials, as well as events related to external data sources (think, for example, Hadoop), external file formats and external resource pools.

LOGbinder for SQL Server 3.0 includes the ability to handle these new events as well as many other improvements. Here are some of the highlights:

  1. Support for SQL Server 2016
  2. New installer – Our new installer automates some of the prerequisites required during the installation process.  Installation time is now just a couple of minutes.
  3. Improved service resilience – We have improved on the delay that was reported by some customer when restarting/starting/stopping the service.
  4. Purge processed files - We have added a new option to purge SQL audit files that are no longer being used by SQL Server and have already been processed by LOGbinder.
  5. Enhanced application activity events - Information events written to the Windows Application log now include statistics including entries exported, elapsed processing time and events per second (EPS).

These are just a few of the improvements in this release of LOGbinder for SQL Server. For full details, check the release notes below.

Customers with current support and maintenance contracts can access the latest version at the link below.  To upgrade to the latest version just run the installer on top of the previous version.  No data or settings will be lost. Please note you will need to request a new license key for this version.  You can do so by clicking on File in the LOGbinder Control Panel, then License and send the license information to licensing@logbinder.com.

Related information

Thank you for your hard work in protecting sensitive information, and thank you for your support!


October 2016 LOGbinder Newsletter: New version of LOGbinder for SharePoint

Mon, 31 Oct 2016 14:05:41 GMT

One of our team members was recently reminiscing about a past IT career and how at their organization SharePoint was a document storage facility hosting timesheets, resumes and the weeks’ cafeteria menu.  Years later, SharePoint has become a widely-used workflow platform for critical business processes and a clearing house for sensitive unstructured data.

Over the years, as we have had more interactions with our customers and audience, we have become convinced that SharePoint security auditing is a requirement for the millions of SharePoint customers around the world.  It seems that on a monthly and weekly basis we are hearing reports of more information leaks and data thefts.  You need the ability to open up closed applications like SharePoint and Exchange and see who’s doing what.

In May 2016 Microsoft released SharePoint 2016 but due to a bug in their Exchange 2016 release, we wanted to make sure that we performed very extensive testing of SharePoint auditing to make sure we didn’t discover any bugs there too.  We also performed very stringent testing of LOGbinder for SharePoint to make sure that our software continues to meet and exceed our internal standards.

What is new in LOGbinder for SharePoint 2016?

  1. Support for SharePoint 2016 On-Premises
  2. New installer – Our new installer automates some of the prerequisites required during the installation process.  Installation time is now just a couple of minutes.
  3. Improved service resilience – A few customers have reported to us that from time to time the LOGbinder service is stopped.  The detailed service logs showed that delays between SharePoint and the farms’ SQL Server were causing timeouts. These timeouts were being reported by SharePoint and were long enough to negatively impact the LOGbinder service.  Now the LOGbinder service will handle these interruptions with less impact.
  4. Weird username prefixes removal – Some customers were wondering why they are seeing weird characters prefixing usernames in the logs.  You can find more info about it here.  We have included an option to remove the claim type characters from the data.
  5. Site collection selection – Managing a handful of site collections is easy.  Some customers though have thousands and thousands of site collections being monitor.  Now you can use CTRL-A to select all site collections in the LOGbinder input.

These are just a few of the improvements in this release of LOGbinder for SharePoint.

Customers with current support and maintenance contracts can access the latest version at the link below.  To upgrade to the latest version just run the installer on top of the previous version.  No data or settings will be lost. Please note you will need to request a new license key for this version.  You can do so by clicking on File in the LOGbinder Control Panel, then License and send the license information to licensing@logbinder.com.

Related information

·         Release notes

·         Download

·         Getting Started Guide

·         Support



LOGbinder for Exchange 3.3.5 Released

Wed, 13 Jul 2016 18:15:30 GMT
We are happy to announce the release of the latest update to LOGbinder for Exchange.  The latest update, Version 3.3.5, introduces some improvements as well as a few bug fixes.  We know that some of our customers that utilize the LEEF Syslog output may have had a few issues with the format of the LEEF output.  This latest release fixes that issue.  We have also created a more robust installer for LOGbinder that automatically configures many of the prerequisites that previously had to be configured manually.  Click here to see a list of all of the latest enhancements and bug fixes.

In conjunction with this release, we have also added a new support section at LOGbinder.com that we will be keeping up-to-date with the latest news, bulletins and features of the entire suite of LOGbinder products.


LOGbinder for SharePoint Restricted Lookups Option

Wed, 06 Jul 2016 14:55:50 GMT

LOGbinder for SharePoint by default makes every effort to fully translate and enrich SharePoint audit events through so called "lookups" where-in LOGbinder makes extra queries to SharePoint to obtain this information.  But there is a cost/benefit relationship to be considered.  Some events in the native SharePoint audit log include fields that are of low or no value to end users at many organizations.  Each field in the native log, including these low or no value fields, requires a lookup by LOGbinder to resolve the native SharePoint data in to user friendly data.  

For example, below is a sample of LOGbinder for SharePoint event ID 13: 

Document checked in
Occurred: 6/25/2016 1:13:04 PM
Site: http://sp2010-sp
User: Administrator
Object
  URL: Shared Documents/FinancialData.xlsx
  Title: n/a
  Version: 1.0 

As you can see in the above event, the “Title” field returned from SharePoint is “n/a”.  This is obviously of no value to the end user.  Since SharePoint includes these low/no value fields, LOGbinder for SharePoint includes an option to intelligently restrict the number of lookups it processes resulting in increased performance of LOGbinder.  You can manage the amount of SharePoint lookups by opening the LOGbinder Control Panel selecting File and then Options.  The amount of lookups performed by LOGbinder can be customized by choosing a value under “Amount of SharePoint lookups.”  See figure 1 below.

 
Figure 1: Managing the amount of SharePoint lookups

The fields that are affected (with the exception of the “Restrict all lookups option”) are all child fields of the targeted object.  “URL” is the most important field included in the events and that field is always reported except on some permission change events and only if the “Exclude high/medium-cost” option is selected. 

Most organizations who need to speed up LOGbinder can safely use the “Exclude high-cost lookups” option without losing significant audit information.  Please note that the “Exclude high/medium-cost” option does adversely impact permission change events. 

We have created a document that explains outlines which fields are affected depending on which option is selected when managing the amount of SharePoint lookups.  You can find a link to the document on the LOGbinder for SharePoint resources page or by clicking here.


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