Documenting Windows infrastructure for an IT department


Technologies Used: Visio, SnagIt, Personal Brain mind-mapping software, Exchange 2003 & 2010, Remote Desktop, Google Postini, Active Directory, ActiveSync, Outlook Web Application (OWA), Sharepoint, Windows Server 2003

Dates: 9/2012 to 11/2012

Samples:  (Confidential, but I might be able to reveal short excerpts of these docs in person).

An IT company hired me to document email architecture for a major international media company.  This media company had three administrative groups for running Exchange in 3 different data centers. Two were running Exchange 2010, and  one was running Exchange 2003. But  all administrative groups shared Active Directory  Resource to allow all users and distribution lists. The media company used public folders, ActiveSync and OWA; the Exchange 2003 data center (which I documented most thoroughly) used clusters and Storage Groups on Storage Area Networks (SANs); it also ran servers for  message archiving, web proxying, faxing, Blackberry,  business continuity and antivirus. It also used Postini (a Google Enterprise app) for  email security.

The Exchange 2003 data center  was constantly experiencing  outages and needing to implement stopgap fixes. Also, the media company lacked any documentation of what the current system was like (because a key Administrator had recently left).  My job was to talk to  current Exchange administrators and outside Exchange experts to write a 12 page technical white paper recommending short and long term solutions to upper management. I also wrote a 25 page Technical Design Document which documented all major system components of the 2003 data center plus all the configuration settings for the Exchange bridgehead/frontend/servers, system policies, connectors and message formats.

An important part of my job was producing system architecture diagrams  to illustrate the ways that different components interacted with one another. These diagrams  could be used as quick references by management and support staff to understand the implications of any proposed action.

Writing system docs & related training material


Work Samples (Diagrams): Process Flow Diagram Sample 1, Sample 2, Sample 3

Work Samples (Technical and Conceptual Overviews): Identity Management and Person Maintenance in CSMART (PDF)

Primary Tools Used: Microsoft Office, SnagIt, Gimp, LibreOffice Draw, TestComplete.  Also used: Enterprise Architect, Share Point,  Team Foundation Server, SQL Server Management console

Dates: April 2011 to April 2012.

As part of the training team, I prepared system docs and user docs for a case management software being designed by an outside IT company (Sogeti)  for the City of Houston Municipal Court System. I interviewed software developers, testers, subject matter experts and business analysts for information. My deliverables included an installation guide,  5-7 page technical overviews on  selected topics, process flow maps and reference guides.  I also prepared a “freshman orientation” packet of introductory information for new developers and IT staff on the project.

I supported other instructional designers with various tasks. One important task was using TestComplete software to load data automatically into the software for classroom exercises. I wrote automation scripts, documented the process and worked closely with other trainers to estimate  data needs for future classes. I also assisted in the training of new trainers.

The backend technologies behind the software product being developed  were .net, Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF), SQL Server, Object-Relational Mapping (with Entities Framework), Onbase Enterprise Content Management as well as several internal systems for the City of Houston.

For managing my own deliverables, I used Share Point every day and DropBox for file syncing and backup.