David Overton's Blog and Discussion Site
This site is my way to share my views and general business and IT information with you about Microsoft, IT solutions for ISVs, technologists and businesses, large and small. I specialise in Windows Intune and SBS 2008.
This blog is purely the personal opinions of David Overton. If you can't find the information you were looking for e-mail me at admin@davidoverton.com.

To find out more about my Windows Intune BOOK - Microsoft Windows Intune 2.0: Quickstart Administration click here

To find out more about my SBS 2008 BOOK - Small Business Server 2008, Installation, Migration and Configuration click here

Browse by Tags

David Overton's Blog

Buy my books

Windows Intune:Quickstart Administration


This is the RAW book (Read as Written).
Click here for more information
Buy or pre-order today

SBS 2008 - Installation, Migration and Configuration

Small Business Server 2008 – Installation, Migration, and Configuration

Buy today in book or e-book form

Request a Review Copy

Twitter

Syndication

  • Office 365 integration module beta for Windows SBS 2011 Essentials

    Hi, I just saw this on the wires and wanted to share it, although please note that this build is for evaluation purposes only. You should not install this in a production environment. Microsoft does not license you for, nor support installing in these environments. You can download the preview package from by navigating to it in the download section of the connect site or by using this link . Please refer to Release Documentation for installation and uninstallation instructions. Feedback is very important to Microsoft. In order for Microsoft to gather feedback on any issues encountered while using this build, please submit all bug reports for this release using the bug reporting form on MS Connect , via the http://connect.microsoft.com/SBS web site. It goes without saying that in order to participate in the Beta Program you need to be signed up on the connect site. Thanks David Technorati Tags: SBS 2011 , Office 365 , Cloud , Microsoft , SBSC
  • It has been a while on the blog

    Well hello again, I've been away for quite some time - work has been very time consuming and two members of my family have required some dedicated attention while they have not been feeling well (and no, no swine flu). I'm hoping to start finding more time to "do" the blog and potentially a "tips and tricks" section for SBS 2008 based on my learning's to date. I do still have quite some work backlog, but I'll try to post some of the blog backlog too - I have hundreds of items to post!! See you soon - and keep the questions coming. David
  • Where to buy Small Business Server 2008, Installing, Migrating and Configuring book

    I've had a few people ask where they can buy my book so I thought I would lay out the options. You can always purchase both the book and / or the e-book from Packt Publishing at this address however for those who wish to buy elsewhere, you can. Book or eBook Free shipping! US, UK, Europe & selected Asian countries This is the RAW book (Read as Written). More Information here To buy or pre-order, click here Book and eBook. Pre-order now! Print only price £27.89 save 10% eBook only price £13.19 save 40% Amazon in UK Amazon in USA Anywhere in the world Anywhere in the world I hope you enjoy the book. For a brief summary of the chapters go here and you can preview a chapter from the book here -(Sample Chapter 4 Installing SBS 2008 and Connecting to the Internet [2.0 MB]) . If you wish to request a copy to review, look at the Request a Review Copy page. I have now embarked on my 2nd book project and you can find out more about it here - http://davidoverton.com/blogs/doverton/archive/2011/08/27/windows-intune-book-update.aspx . I have also included a link to buy the RAW version in the above table too! Thanks David Technorati Tags: SBS 2008 , Small Business Server 2008 , Installing , Configuring , Migrating , Microsoft , Book
  • How to encrypt backups and optionally the system disks on Windows Server 2008 and SBS 2008 and Windows Vista too

    Hi, someone asked in the forums how if the backups on SBS 2008 and Windows Server 2008 were encrypted and the answer is no, even if the drives being backed up are BitLocker protected ( more details here ). However you can get encrypted backups with a bit of effort. To do this you will need to at least BitLocker enable your removable drives and optionally your system disk. I used the information at http://blogs.msdn.com/askdavid/archive/2007/06/08/enabling-bitlocker-on-removable-drives-usb-flash-drives-usb-hard-drives.aspx as a guide to putting together what I needed to do, so many thanks David Chandra for this. This same process can also be used on Windows Vista There are a couple of snags however and you need to work out which scenario you wish to have (if you have a TPM chip then option 2 & 3 can be replaced with entering a key into the TPM prompt: encrypt just the backup disks you will need to run a script each time a volume is added back to the system encrypt the system disk and the backup disks and you will need a USB key or key information to be entered every time you reboot the server encrypt the system disk and the backup disks, but store the system unlock information unencrypted on the server so you do not have to enter decryption information every time. Given the choices above the steps are as follows (they build from option 1 through to option 3): Option 1 Add BitLocker to the server Encrypt the Backup Hard Disks Add an unlock script Option 2 Prepare the system disk for BitLocker encryption Encrypt the system Option 3 Store the unlock key on the boot partition for automatic use Option 1 (encrypting the backup disks) You will need to repeat the steps below (excluding adding Bitlocker to the system) for each disk you want to encrypt. You can do this to an existing disk or a new disk. Add Bitlocker role To start this task we need to add the BitLocker role to SBS 2008. While BitLocker is built into Windows Server 2008 it is not installed. To install it start Server Manager from the Start Menu and then scroll...
  • SBS 2008, Installing, migrating and configuring BOOK now available to pre-order

    [updated 2nd May 2009] Hi everyone. My SBS 2008 book is in now available to order. Details below. If you want to ask questions once you have the book, go to http://davidoverton.com/r.ashx?13 . To order the book click http://davidoverton.com/r.ashx?1M Small Business Server 2008 – Installation, Migration, and Configuration David Overton Set up and run your small business server making it deliver big business impact · Step-by-step guidance through the installation and configuration process with numerous pictures · Successfully install SBS 2008 into your business, either as a new installation or by migrating from SBS 2003 · Configure hosted web sites for public and secure information exchange using Office Live for Small Business and Office Live Workspaces · An illustrative book for people with basic technical skills and no SBS background In More Detail Available April 2009. Order now! Cover price £24.99 Packt Special Offer £22.49 save 10% Multi-buy Discount £20.49 save 18% Hurray David Technorati Tags: SBS 2008 , Small Business Server 2008 , Book , Personal , If you only read one blog today , SBSC , Microsoft
  • SBS 2008 Migrations from SBS 2003 – Keys to Success from the Official SBS Blog

    I started to write about this at SBS 2003 to SBS 2008 migration thoughts and issues and Active Directory Health Checks , but after some discussion with the SBS team at Microsoft we now have much more: The Official SBS Blog : SBS 2008 Migrations from SBS 2003 – Keys to Success The purpose of this post is to help you complete your SBS 2003 migrations to SBS 2008 successfully on the first attempt. ……………… much, much more Use this information if you have a non-standard implementation or are concerned about the success of a migration. ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , SBS 2003 , SBS 2008 , Migration , SBSC , Small Business Server 2008
  • Catalog of Windows Small Business Server 2008 Installation Error Messages

    So there I was talking about migration issues and Chris Pucket pointed to this GREAT store of error messages and resolutions for SBS installs.  I've copied the links for now, but expect them to be updated over time!! Still let me know Migration issues on the link above! Catalog of Windows Small Business Server 2008 Installation Error Messages This topic links to information about errors that you might encounter while installing Windows SBS 2008. If you encounter an error that does not appear on this page, see “Troubleshooting Windows Small Business Server 2008” in the Windows Small Business Server Technical Library (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=111318). Click a link to view information about that error message. An error occurred while installing or configuring a Windows SBS 2008 application An error occurred while promoting the server to a domain controller Anti-spam agents for Exchange Server 2007 cannot be installed Anti-spam automatic updates for Exchange Server 2007 cannot be configured Anti-spam settings for e-mail cannot be configured Cannot create the Active Directory structure required to create users, groups, and computer accounts for Windows Small Business Server 2008 Cannot enable network discovery Configure Windows SBS SharePoint Site E-mail antivirus template settings were not applied E-mail distribution groups cannot be created E-mail notifications about the folder quota are not configured Exchange ActiveSync mailbox policy settings cannot be configured Exchange Server 2007 backup and recovery cannot be configured Exchange Server 2007 cannot be installed Exchange Server 2007 tasks cannot be configured Folder Redirection is not configured Gadgets are not configured HTTP Proxy is not installed Incoming and outgoing e-mail for Windows SharePoint Services cannot be configured Internet Information Services (IIS) was not configured Organizational units in Active Directory Domain Services cannot be configured Organizational units in Active Directory Domain Services cannot be created Remote...
  • SBS 2008 Update Rollup 1 Released to fix Vista AV reporting issue and GoDaddy domain registration issue

    Hi everyone, the first roll-up of fixes for SBS 2008 shipped today. It addresses some minor issues, which is good, but always worth being aware of. From the Official SBS 2008 blog SBS 2008 Update Rollup 1 Releases Today Windows Small Business Server 2008 Update Rollup 1 releases today. This rollup package addresses the following issues in Windows Small Business Server 2008. Issue 1 The Security tab in the Windows Small Business Server 2008 Console incorrectly reports the spyware and malware status of Windows Vista Service Pack 1-based clients that are joined to a domain. Specifically, some security applications are reported as incompatible in the antivirus and malware status that is reported. Issue 2 The Internet Address Management Wizard exits unexpectedly when you register a domain name. This issue occurs when you select GoDaddy.com as the provider, and then you click Register Now How to obtain this update This update will be available from the Microsoft Update Web site: http://update.microsoft.com More Information http://support.microsoft.com/KB/958715 The Official SBS Blog : SBS 2008 Update Rollup 1 Releases Today ttfn David Technorati Tags: SBS 2008 , Vista , Windows Vista , Updates , GoDaddy , Anti-virus , Anti-Malware , System Updates , Microsoft , SBSC , Community
  • How to create a VPN on Windows Vista to connect to a Windows Server, such as SBS 2008

    I was going to include this in the book, but decided it was not quite the right subject matter, so I've decided to post it on the blog. SBS 2003 had a pre-defined tool for VPNs. The tool exists in SBS 2008 to produce the same tool, but you have to configure it by hand. This is covered in this blog entry here . If you are on a client machine and you need create a VPN connection, or you are a user and want to create a VPN on Windows Vista, follow this guide. Start at the Start menu . Press the Connect To button to start the process. You will be told that you are already connected to a network, but you will need to create a new connection. Do this by selecting the Set up a connection or Network option and press Connect . In the Choose a connection option screen, select the Connect to a workplace option and press Next . Now select Use my Internet connection (VPN) . The Internet address is that for your remote server. If you are using Small Business Server 2008 (SBS 2008) this will likely be "remote." and your e-mail domain, so for example if your e-mail was david@davidoverton.com then it would be remote.davidoverton.com . In the Internet address box type your address. Now type a description. For me, I would also suggest ticking the box Don't connect now; just set it up so I can connect later . Press Next to continue Type in your User name and Password . While you can tick the box Remember this password it is a security risk as anyone using your computer can then connect to your work domain without knowing your password. You will also need to know your domain name. If you do not know this right click on Computer in the Start menu and select properties . When the screen appears your domain name will be shown. Enter this information into the Domain (optional) box. You are now ready to connect. Press Connect Now to start a connection. Next time you press Connect To from the Start menu you will see your VPN in the list. Select it and press Connect . If your User name or password are not present (if you followed...
  • Citrix Access Essentials, SBS 2008, EBS 2008 and you - Birmingham, 10th Feb

    As many of you know I work with Citrix in the UK. While their product is not appropriate for 100% of the SBS & EBS market, if you would like to know more about the opportunity when you are a Citrix Partner and specifically about Access Essentials for SBS and EBS, you should attend this event. There is also a great prize too :-) If you want to see a blog all about Citrix then look at their official blog here and if you want to see someone in the community talking about his area then look at Brian Madden's info here. www.citrixpartneraccelerator.co.uk Find out how your business could join the fast lane in 2009 by becoming a Citrix partner. It's an exciting time to be part of the Citrix Partner Network™: in the last year we launched new virtualisation solutions, expanded our partnerships with the world's top hardware and software vendors and added new incentives to channel programmes. At our Citrix Partner Accelerator event, you'll learn how these investments could help you develop your business - by offering your customers the most powerful and comprehensive value-added application delivery infrastructure solutions in the market. Get up to speed with Citrix We'll bring you up to speed with the latest Citrix vision and strategy and give you the inside track on new Citrix and partner offerings that could help you stay competitive in 2009. Understand the latest developments within Citrix and in the wider market with keynote speeches from senior Citrix executives. Learn how you can develop new business opportunities by working together with Citrix. Experience the newest application delivery infrastructure solutions through demonstrations and proof of concepts in the technical sessions. Connect with Citrix employees, Citrix Distributors and Citrix Alliance Partners who could transform the way you do business. Focused Workshops for new resellers on developing your business with Citrix, plus a Citrix Access Essentials for Microsoft focused partners and a Citrix strategic sales workshop for those...
  • SBS 2003 to SBS 2008 migration thoughts and issues

    I've been part of a lively debate on the Yahoo UK SBS Group about how to migrate from SBS 2003 to SBS 2008 and what the issues are.  The information I have so far is good, but I need much more to take it to the product teams. For sure, the issues so far are: Concerns around the "state" of AD before a migration is started - how do you check it - look at this blog post Concerns around the Exchange migration in terms of time taken and failure scenarios - how to remove the chances of this? Concerns around "on-site" versus "off-site" strategies Concerns around recovery options in the event of failures (restore from backup not being ideal if you want it diagnosed) My problem is that I have no data to take to the Microsoft product teams, which means I can't ask them to fix things so this is a two fold open invitation. If you have had an issue, share it via comments below, but also PLEASE e-mail ( doverton@microsoft.com ) as well so I can get in touch with you and potentially the product teams too.  If you put your mail in the blog then others can see it.  You are also welcome to just e-mail me, but then there will not be discussion in public, which might be a shame. Share other concerns so I can get them documented and addressed, but also use the Microsoft support - you can always send me the SR numbers if you want me to tie them together. That is it - may the knowledge sharing continue!   David Technorati Tags: SBS 2003 , SBS 2008 , migration , Microsoft , Small Business Server , SBSC , Community , Partners
  • How to upgrade (migrate) from SBS 2003 to SBS 2008 on the same system without using a swing migration

    Someone posted this question on a discussion group at work and it got me thinking. If you bought a nice new system over the last 2 or so years in preparation for SBS 2008 (Cougar as was or even SBS v.Next) and had it installed with SBS 2003 you've probably heard that SBS 2003 to SBS 2008 is a 2 box migration and needs the Swing technique to do an on box migration. I've come up with a much simpler solution, but your hardware might need some additions to make it work. So here is what you need: Box with 6GB of RAM minimum (4GB for SBS 2008, 1GB for SBS 2003 and 1GB for Hyper-V server). 1 new disk for SBS 2008 system disk and 1 disk to hold Hyper-V (which could be small if desired or temporary) System that meets the minimum system requirements of Hyper-V ( http://www.microsoft.com/servers/hyper-v-server/system-requirements.mspx ) You need to ensure your hardware is really up to spec and is fit enough that you want your new SBS 2008 system to run on it for the next 2+ years, otherwise this may well be a false economy. The process in outline is below. If you need more detailed information, let me know and I'll knock something up (as well as this may possibly end up in the book) Take a full system backup before starting Take existing system and add RAM and 2 disks Install Hyper-V Server onto 1 disk Install Hyper-V manager onto a client PC ( see here for details ) Configure the network to all nodes can connect to a real physical network that has your internet router and firewall on it Configure a virtual machine with pass-through disks that point to each of your SBS 2003 disks. To make a disk visible in Hyper-V console as a pass-through see here . Only configure approx 1GB of memory as you only need it to run well enough to perform a migration. Start and boot the SBS 2003 VM. Check that all services start (or can be started if there is a timing issue) and that all data is available. Install the integration Services Setup disk, run the setup and reboot when asked Create another virtual machine with 4GB of RAM that...
  • David Overton's first book - Installing and Configuring SBS 2008, including migration from SBS 2003

    [updated 5th May 2009] Hi, If you are interested in ordering a copy, click here and you will be taken through to the Packt Publishing ordering page, with a choice of electronic (e-book in for form of a PDF) or Softback traditional book or both available for immediate shipment . If you are interested in other locations, click here . For a small amount of information on each chapter, see the items below. Introductions Introduction to SBS 2008 Preparing to migrate from SBS 2003 Installing SBS 2008 and connecting to the Internet Migrating systems and settings from SBS 2003 Migrating email from Exchange 2003 to Exchange 2007 Migrating the CompanyWeb SharePoint site Migrating users and data from SBS 2003 Configuring your services Securing your server Managing users and their computers Working with SBS Services as a user Introduction to SBS 2008 management The chapter flow is well described by this picture: To order the book click http://davidoverton.com/r.ashx?1M Small Business Server 2008 – Installation, Migration, and Configuration David Overton Set up and run your small business server making it deliver big business impact · Step-by-step guidance through the installation and configuration process with numerous pictures · Successfully install SBS 2008 into your business, either as a new installation or by migrating from SBS 2003 · Configure hosted web sites for public and secure information exchange using Office Live for Small Business and Office Live Workspaces · An illustrative book for people with basic technical skills and no SBS background Cover price £24.99 Packt Special Offer £22.49 save 10% Multi-buy Discount £20.49 save 18% The book has many screen shots in it to keep things clear. I'm also relying on a group of people to help me keep it on track. They are (in alphibetical order): Alex Stanier - IT 4 Business - http://www.stanier.co.uk/ Gavin Barkey - EJC.IT - http://www.ejc.it Ian Watkins - Oxbridge Technologies - http://www.oxbridgetechnology.co.uk/ Leslie...
  • Office Small Business 2007 – get up to 25% off in the UK

    I saw this at the Special Offers site from the Small Business team and thought I would share. Office Small Business 2007 – get up to 25% off Buy Office 2007 Small Business Edition before 17 January and you can get a discount of up to 25%. Enhance productivity in your workplace and manage tasks and your customers more efficiently with Microsoft Office Small Business 2007. Excel, Word, Publisher, Outlook and PowerPoint provide all the tools you need to give your business a professional edge. (Offer applies to FPP (Fully-Packaged Product) only, ie not via volume licensing or OEM etc.) Availability: UK Small Businesses Valid from: December 21 2008 Offer expires: January 17 2009 How to buy: Equanet: Microsoft Office 2007 Small Business CD Equanet: 2007 Version Upgrade Grey Matter: Microsoft Office 2007 Small Business CD MacWarehouse: Microsoft Office 2007 Small Business CD MacWarehouse: 2007 Version Upgrade Microwarehouse: Microsoft Office 2007 Small Business CD Microwarehouse: 2007 Version Upgrade PC World Business: Microsoft Office 2007 Small Business CD PC World Business: 2007 Version Upgrade WStore: Microsoft Office 2007 Small Business CD MS Store: Microsoft Office 2007 Small Business CD Hopefully it will make a nice present for the New Year. Have a Merry Christmas!! David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , Small Business , Office 2007 , Offer , Partners
  • SBS 2008 Forefront Virus protection for e-mail Errors or Warnings - “At least one of the engines enabled for update has not been updated in the last week” – how to solve

    My SBS 2008 installation is pretty good, but one area I’ve noticed some problems was with ForeFront. I either had errors or at best warnings all the time about the scan engines. I would go and hit a manual update, but the bar would be 30-90% across and suddenly stop. When I looked in the event log I could see errors like these below. Searching the internet delivered me the KB article http://support.microsoft.com/kb/939411/en-us which talks about timeout issues, however even with the recommended change things did not resolve themselves. Source: GetEngineFiles Event ID: 6014 Level: Error Description: Microsoft Forefront Server Security encountered an error while performing a scan engine update. Scan Engine: AhnLab Update Path: http://forefrontdl.microsoft.com/server/scanengineupdate/x86/AhnLab Proxy Settings: Disabled Error Code: 0xC0001F58 Description: The operation timed out. Source: Microsoft Forefront Security Event ID: 7003 Level: Warning Description: Not all of the selected engines enabled for updates successfully updated at the last attempt Source: GetEngineFiles Event ID: 6012 Level: Error Description: Microsoft Forefront Server Security encountered an error while performing a scan engine update. Scan Engine: Kaspersky5 Error Code: 0x80070102 Description: Unable to acquire the scan engine update mutex within the designated timeout period. The fix was to realise that the timeout value in the KB was still too slow. The KB recommended creating a DWORD called EngineDownloadTimeout in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\Forefront Server Security\Exchange Server and setting the value to 600 decimal for 10 minutes. I’ve now set mine to 900 (384 hex) for 15 minutes and finally all the updates have succeeded. While the console has not shown the change just yet, looking at the events in the event log show that indeed everything is now up to date. ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , SBS 2008 , ForeFront , Security , Updates , Tips , Support
  • Nick King – Microsoft corp SBS God in the UK on 7th November!!

    Hopefully you have seen this elsewhere, but if not….. 7 th November 2008, Reading: TechNet Exclusive! Hear from the guy that brought you Microsoft’s enterprise computing to small and medium businesses An exclusive opportunity to meet Nicholas King, Technical Product Manager from Microsoft Corporation before the launch of the  Windows Essential server solutions offerings, Small Business Server 2008 and Essential Business Server 2008 on November 12 th . Hear Nicholas and Jamie Burgess  advise on why these solutions have been created and why it is still important to invest in solution infrastructure in  economic uncertainty. With the assistance of Jamie they will go into some technical detail around the two products that make up Windows essential server Solutions. 1. Windows Small Business Server (SBS) 2008 is an all-in-one server solution designed to help you keep your data more secure and your company more productive. It provides many of the features used by larger companies, such as e-mail, Internet connectivity, internal Web sites, remote access, support for mobile devices, file and printer sharing, backup, and restore—all at one affordable price Premium version also provides advanced support for line-of-business applications. 2. Windows Essential Business Server (EBS) 2008 is an all-in-one integrated multi-server solution designed and priced specifically for midsize businesses. EBS provides the essential technology needed for a highly secure and reliable infrastructure. Powered by Windows Server 2008 technology, it combines software for management, messaging, and security features into one integrated server solution that is designed to dramatically reduce IT complexity and improve efficiency across the business, putting IT in control with a centrally-managed network platform.  Join us to get a technical overview of Windows EBS 2008, learn about the server requirements, and find out more about the integrated technologies and architecture.  Finally after covering the key ways to deploy and...
  • SBS 2008 now available for download on MSDN

    Hi there folks, so following on from my recent post on the fact that SBS 2008 has released to manufacturing (which means it will be in the shops soon), I saw today that SBS 2008 is now available to download from MSDN : I did notice that there is currently a slight mis-print in that it appears there are two disks for the x86 Windows Server 2008 disk, where as the 2nd one is actually the x64 disk (as noted in the ISO number).   It is also worth stating that for SBS 2008, to remove any issues around “Compatibility”, for those applications that are fussy, simply run them on the premium server which is Server 2008, so runs anything that you could run on Server 2008.   Go grab if you can’t wait to get it any other way … note that you only need disk 1 to install, but the rest to understand recovery and Premium solutions.   Thanks David Technorati Tags: SBSC , SBS , Small Business Server 2008 , Small Business , Developer , MSDN , Partners , Microsoft , Download , SBS 2008
  • Just in case you missed it SBS 2008: Released to Manufacturing and date for launch set

    I know I am very, very, very behind the times on  this, but just in case you missed it …  This means that SBS Cougar is now completely done and now a 100% SBS 2008!! The Official SBS Blog : SBS 2008: Released to Manufacturing! On behalf of the SBS team, I am extremely pleased to announce that Windows Small Business Server 2008 software has been finalized! Today both SBS Standard and Premium are being released to manufacturing, which means we begin the process of finalizing international versions, creating media, building packaging, delivering the product to distribution channels and handing it off to our OEM partners, so it will be widely available by our November 12 launch. (More information about launch will come in the future.) <snipped> We invested in a number of different areas for this release; here’s the big picture of the themes and features in SBS 2008: For IT managers and technology consultants:  · Microsoft’s newest server technologies: Powerful and more secure infrastructure that was rebuilt from the ground up. · IT made easy:  Deployment, setup and administration is dramatically simplified and improved. New tools to manage domain names and data folders.  New single CALs make SBS 2008 licensing more flexible and cost-effective. · Improved Manageability: Monitoring across both servers and client PCs. Customizable, remotely-accessible reports via e-mail and mobile devices · Application Platform: SBS 2008 Premium Edition is an ideal platform for critical business applications, via SQL Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 on a second hardware server For small business owners and employees:  · Greater security: Trial subscriptions to Microsoft Forefront Security for Exchange Server and Windows Live OneCare for Server. Extensibility model for easy reporting of 3 rd party protection applications. · Better data protection: New block-based server protection technologies that can complete backing up your server in minutes rather than hours. · Simple, easy online marketing and commerce...
  • How long is the grace period on SBS 2008 (how long can you evaluate SBS 2008 without entering a product key)

    I saw this one come up internally and externally, so I thought I would share the answer.  Remember that SBS 2008 is built on Windows Server 2008, Exchange 2007 and SQL 2008 (for the premium edition).  This means that you are bound by the limits of those products.  For SBS Standard this is Windows Server 2008, which is 60 days that can be extended to up to 240 days using the rearm process documented in the KB article http://support.microsoft.com/kb/948472 . SQL2008 has a trial period of 180 days, so if your evaluating SBS 2008 Premium edition you are limited by that.   ttfn   David Technorati Tags: SQL 2008 , Windows Server 2008 , SBS 2008 , SBSC , Partners , Microsoft , Eval , Evaluation , Trial
  • SBS 2008 & EBS 2008 – Virtualisation Webcast

    You can access the webcast at https://training.partner.microsoft.com/plc/details.aspx?publisher=12&delivery=249912# As a quick recap, Microsoft see’s virtualisation as more than than just machine virtualisation.  In the Microsoft, virtualisation is split into: Presentation Virtualisation – What would have previously been known as Terminal Services Application Virtualisation (App-V) – Where applications are “streamed” to your desktop or terminal services presentation without being installed Machine Virtualisation (Desktop aka VDI or Server) – what most people think of as “Virtualisation” Virtualisation will be supported in for a set of scenarios with SBS 2008 and EBS 2008.  The first thing to understand is that the primary node has a large load on it and is not an ideal candidate to act as a host for virtual machines.  You also need to understand that the host can’t really be part of the domain if the primary node of SBS is virtualised on it as there are all sorts of nasty issues around dependency issues. You might want to run some virtualisations scenarios to enable: Enable more “servers” to be run on a single server Enable greater flexibility in migration and DR between machines Enable greater remote access capabilities to desktops or applications via Desktop or Presentation virtualisation So what was announced: SBS 2008 Premium Edition’s 2nd box can be a Presentation Virtualisation host – i.e. run TS on the 2nd box and use the gateway functionality on the 1st system SBS 2008 Premium Edition’s 2nd box can be a Machine Virtualisation host.  This box can run as both a host and guest, providing the host is used to simply run the Hyper-V role.  Both the 1st and 2nd SBS systems can be run as guests on the host. There are some other gotchas that need to be considered: The backup on SBS is based on USB removable disks, however the USB disks are not passed through to the virtual machine in the same way so you need to look at other strategies, such as creating a large VHD in the USB disks and...
  • Can't find the WSS (Windows SharePoint Services) sales and marketing toolkit for SBS 2003 - here it was

    I've had someone ask me about the WSS toolkit that was referenced at How to Sell, Deploy, and Build Business with Microsoft Windows Sharepoint Services 3.0 and SBS 2003 R2 . The download location has moved to http://www.partnersalesresources.com/Pages/sbskit.aspx# . ttfn David Technorati Tags: Windows SharePoint Services , WSS v3 , SBS , SBS 2003 R2 , Microsoft , Partners
  • I’ve been asked to write a SBS 2008 book … and it is “in progress”

    I know this is a bit early, but I’ve been asked to write a SBS 2008 book.  I aiming it at those who are not super dooper IT experts, along the lines of the level I blog at, with more explanation for some areas.  I’m awaiting final comments from a solicitor and then hopefully I can sign the contract and then it is count down.  I hope to have finished the book by January, but that might be a bit optimistic!!   I’ll update you as I progress with the book.  If anyone wants to share thoughts, your always welcome, although I can’t promise things will get incorporated.   ttfn David Technorati Tags: SBS 2008 , Book , Personal , Microsoft , Small Business Server 2008
  • SBS 2008 and EBS 2008 and the Action Pack

    I’ve been asked many, many times “Will Small Business Server 2008 or Essential Business Server 2008” be in the Action Pack. The simple answer is “ YES” . As to when, well that depends on the RTM of the actual products, however, we’re trying to get them in as early as possible. Thanks David Technorati Tags: Action Pack , SBSC , Microsoft , SBS 2008 , EBS 2008 , Partners , Support and Tools
  • How to migrate from SBS 2003 to Small Business Server 2008 (SBS 2008)

    I’ve spoken about migration several times now for SBS 2008 . The short answer is that migration from one box to another is vital. If a customer wants to do migration on the same box, then this is either expensive (and a very long process) or something that requires moving the server temporarily to another system, or as I prefer, virtualising it. Of course, SBS 2003 is not necessarily supported in a virtual environment, but since all we want to do is migrate from it, not “run it”, this should help you get over this. The details of the process can be found in the Windows Small Business Server 2008 technical library . One of the MOST IMPORTANT things to understand is to create the answer file. This is covered in the migration help below: Windows Small Business Server 2008 Migration Help ( Download ) Provides step-by-step instructions for migrating from Windows SBS 2003 or 2008 to Windows SBS 2008. Last Updated on June 30, 2008 Windows Small Business Server 2008 Product Help ( Download ) Provides step-by-step instructions for using the Windows SBS 2008 server software. Last Updated on June 30, 2008 Downloadable documentation for Windows Small Business Server 2008 Before you start – what you need to remember SBS 2008 is a 64-bit solution requiring x64 capable hardware There is NO 32-bit to 64-bit “in-place” upgrade solution SBS 2008 Standard is a single server solution, while SBS 2008 Premium includes the license and software for a 2nd Windows Server system (as part of the domain) SBS 2008 Premium edition does NOT have ISA as part of the solution. SBS 2003 Premium customers with Software Assurance will be able to “make good” their ISA licenses for a limited amount of time after SBS 2008 is released. SBS 2008 Premium edition has the option to use SQL 2008 Standard edition on either server. SQL 2008 can be downgraded Migration options at high level Add a new server to existing SBS 2003 domain and either Remove old SBS 2003 server Purchase SBS 2008 Premium edition and make old server 2nd server using the license as part of...
  • Microsoft wants to know what you want for the UK SBS 2008 Launch? Time to stop saying you want it better and time to start saying what you actually want and would use!!

    One thing I have never been accused of is holding back my opinion and on the Yahoo Groups recently there has been some discussions around what Microsoft has done for partners. As part of the discussion this blog post from Sonal, the UK Product Manager for SBS 2008 and EBS 2008, came up with a question around what do partners want to see in a UK launch. I thought people who read this blog might like to pop over to Sonal's blog and give a voice to their wants. I've seen suggestions from free beer, which was a Joke I was later told, to license pricing, features and benefits, how to up-sell/cross-sell. The problem with the later items is that they are simply personal to the business doing the selling - why have an upsell to mobile devices if your business can't facilitate it? What do you want to see at the UK SBS 2008 Launch? In May 2006 we had a server event for guys (and gals) who sell server - specifically Small Business Server. We split the event into two - the morning event was for those who were new to selling SBS and the afternoon track was for those who already have a great deal of experience in selling SBS. Both sessions went down a storm where we covered off all sorts from market analytics to Windows Mobile with SBS. With the learnings from that event and feedback from YOU, we're hoping to do it again - but better. So, while James tries to uncover how you want your content delivered, I'm keen to understand what exactly it is that you need from us. And it may seem obvious to you. But tell me anyway. As we plan the UK launch event for around the September/October timeframe, it would be really helpful to hear from you on what you need from us - either at the potential launch event, or before that via webcasts. <snipped - contact details on Sonal's blog> SBS stuff and then some... : What do you want to see at the UK SBS 2008 Launch? ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , SBS 2008 , SBS , Small Business , Small Business Server 2008 , Marketing , Community , SBSC , Partners
  • Small Business Server 2008 downgrade rights questions and answers

    Last night I was at the Merseyside Partner group in Liverpool and once question that got asked again (and was in TPV and London too) was around downgrade rights from SBS 2008 to SBS 2003, so I dug for about 30 seconds and found these items on the Licensing FAQ site Microsoft Windows Small Business Server 2008 : Q: What are downgrade rights? How do I exercise them? A: Downgrade rights, in general, means that you can use an earlier version of the software acquired. For Windows Small Business Server, this means you are allowed to install and use Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2 Premium Edition instead of Windows Small Business Server 2008 Premium Edition, which is what you purchased. You can also install and use Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2 Standard Edition instead of Windows Small Business Server 2008 Standard Edition. At any time, you can install the software you purchased and cease to use the earlier version. If you obtained your server with Windows Small Business Server preinstalled from a partner or OEM, in order to exercise your downgrade rights you must already have the earlier versions of Windows Small Business Server media available. If you purchased Open Licensing, Volume Licensing, Software Assurance, or the full retail product of Windows Small Business Server 2008, contact Microsoft fulfillment services in your region. Q: Are my Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2 CALs valid to use to access my Windows Small Business Server 2008 network? A: No. You must have the CAL version that matches the version of the server software you are running. That is, if you have a Windows Small Business Server 2008 domain, you must have Windows Small Business Server 2008 CALs. Note: If you choose to run an earlier version of the server software (by way of using downgrade rights), you would still be in compliance with your license by acquiring Windows Small Business Server 2008 CALs. Q: How do I obtain CALs for earlier versions of Windows Small Business Server when they are discontinued? A: You will need to purchase...
  • Moving SBS 2003 to new hardware or performing a migration – Update (QFE) to give you longer to do it (21 days up from the 7 days)

    From The Official SBS Blog : Small Business Server 2003 Migration Update 943494 Released , a slightly old post, but something work highlighting – how to have 2 SBS boxes on the same network for 21 days. Small Business Server 2003 Migration Update 943494 Released [Today's post comes to us courtesy of Justin Crosby] The software license terms for Windows SBS enforce a limitation that permits the presence of only one Windows SBS server in the domain. However, there is a grace period where you can have a second SBS server in “join domain” type migration scenarios. This grace period is 7 days. In some situations, this grace period may not be long enough to properly complete the migration. This software update extends the allowable grace period for the supported scenarios from 7 days to 21 days. Please plan accordingly, aim to complete your migration within 7 days and only use this update for situations where it is needed. Remember, i f you hit the 21 day limit there is nothing that can be done to extend the limit any further. Important: We strongly recommend that you complete all migration tasks before you demote the Windows SBS domain controller to a member server. Once you demote the Windows SBS domain controller to a member server, the grace period is reset back to 7 days or whatever is left from the 21 days (whichever is less) . The update is available at: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyId=64903D3C-3264-418D-9199-2963A599E268 The KB is available at: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;943494 For more information on migrating Windows Small Business Server 2003 to new hardware please see: http://technet2.microsoft.com/WindowsServerSolutions/SBS/en/library/62e2094e-ad4e-4227-b20e-97a716ed7c861033.mspx ttfn David Technorati Tags: SBS 2003 , SBS 2008 , Small Business , Microsoft , SBSC , Updates , Tips
  • SBS 2008 systems limitations and functions are the same as Windows Server 2008

    With SBS 2003 R2, some of the Windows Server 2003 R2 features were not included. I asked today where we were with SBS 2008 and the CPU, Memory and feature lists are, so I am told, the same. On the page http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2008/en/us/compare-specs.aspx it talks about the max number of procs, memory etc for Windows Server 2008 Standard. You should use these to represent SBS 2008, however, note SBS 2008 has it’s own minimum requirements. See below for the important points KEY: = Not Available = Available Specification Standard Enterprise X64 Sockets 4 8 X64 RAM 32 GB 2 TB Failover Cluster Nodes (Nodes) 16 Fault Tolerant Memory Sync Cross-File Replication (DFS-R) Network Access Connections (RRAS) 250 Unlimited Network Access Connections (IAS) 50 Unlimited Terminal Services Gateway 250 Unlimited Virtual Image Use Rights 1 4 The features of Windows Server 2008 that are in Standard Edition can be found here - http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2008/en/us/differentiated-features.aspx which should also be a list of what is in SBS 2008. Bear in mind that the product has not released yet, but it appears to be going this direction. ttfn David Technorati Tags: SBS 2008 , Small Business Server 2008 , Small Business , Limitations , Windows Server 2008 , SBSC , Microsoft
  • Proof that SBSC partners can grow from 1-man businesses into Microsoft Certified Partners – and still be good for small business – congrats Richard Tubb

    I remember the name Richard Tubb being mentioned a few times over the last 2 year and remember him on some of the Live Meetings I delivered and then he launched his blog. One thing that was apparent from his questions, contacts and especially his blog is that this is a man that “got it”. Now there are a few others that I believe live and breathe this attitude and to name some and miss others would be bad, so I wont name any (if you want to know if your on my “I love you man” list, drop me an e-mail, but I’ve probably told you or made time for you, which is a good hint), but one thing about living your life by certain principles is that you still have to live your life. By got it, I mean: is solution, not product oriented Is value sensitive, not price sensitive Believes in the value of the community Is prepared to stand up and be counted for his opinion – which is his, not others Will tell you when he things you are talking… erm… rubbish!! Believes in good processes (eg service plans, documentation etc) If you look at his blog, you will see the above, so it is nice to see the business grow and achieve an amazing milestone. Richard is still a great SBSC partner, but now he is ALSO a Microsoft Certified Partner. Well done - TubbBlog: Netlink IT achieves Microsoft Certified Partner Status I'm chuffed to announce that Netlink IT achieved Microsoft Certified Partner Status this past month gone. After striving to reach the level this Certification demanded for quite some time, the achievement of reaching the goal-post almost got lost in the business that taking on new staff, moving into a new office and re-organising the business brought on! It was March 2006 that Netlink IT became a Microsoft Small Business Specialist Partner - and two years on I think that the SBSC certification , and in particular the benefits of working with the community that surrounds the "blue badge" from that certification, have significantly helped me to grow the company to the stage it's at now. I'm hoping that Microsoft Certified...
  • Configuring OneCare for Servers in SBS 2008

    The Console setup process ( Once SBS is set up, how to do the basic configuration through the management console ) sets up SBS 2008 for use. OneCare for Servers provide anti-malware capabilities and is an important part of the system integrity. SBS 2008 comes with a trial of OneCare and so far I’ve found it very effective. Setup today requires two updates that it downloads and applies itself: Notice that the initial configuration immediately informs you that you need to update Start the process, tell OneCare which country you are in and and accept the EULA. The download starts, updates and finishes If you have an activation key, or wish to purchase one you carry on through the process, switching to a web site to complete the process Note, DO NOT try to activate your trial in the Technical Preview unless you have already been provided with a key If you have been going through the Console in order then this is it baring the enabling of Office Live. Finally, all the SBS 2008 entries can be found at http://davidoverton.com/blogs/doverton/archive/tags/SBS+2008/default.aspx ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , SBS 2008 , SBS , Tips , SBSC , Small Business , Small Business Server 2008 , Community , Partner , Console , One Care , Security , Anti-Virus , Anti-spam
  • Set up Microsoft Office Live Small Business Web sites

    The Console setup process ( Once SBS is set up, how to do the basic configuration through the management console ) sets up SBS 2008 for use. One of the options is for a spit personality Office Live for Small Businesses solution. Why split, well the e-mail items are held on the SBS 2008 Exchange server, as will the report site services, but the public web site and WSS external collaboration sites will be hosted on the Office Live servers. This means that things like DNS need a bit more management, but that can all be handled for you. This is how I configured mine: Start the process from the console and say I want a new site. Since SBS 2008 already knows the external address of the SBS box, it offers to enable the DNS to be redirected to Office Live for the www.mydomain.com address We then get into the Office Live sign-up process via the web. One word of note here, I had installed the box as a US system, not a UK system, so it took me to the US site. If you change the language settings in the browser (Tools/Options/Language) to EN-GB, then you will get the UK site. You can see form the pictures below that the sign-up process is simple and secure. Once you have finished on the web site it all you need to do is to complete the sign in details below. Now for me, that was not the end of the story – the verification e-mail was simply not arriving, even though I requested it to be resent several times. Eventually I discovered it was the spam filter settings rejecting the mail. I have reported this as a bug into Microsoft, but in the mean time, to overcome the situation, have a look at How to change spam settings on Exchange 2007 / SBS 2008 to enable some / all / more spam to be delivered to an account for analysis to see how I resolved it. One again that is it for this stage. Finally, all the SBS 2008 entries can be found at http://davidoverton.com/blogs/doverton/archive/tags/SBS+2008/default.aspx ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , SBS 2008 , SBS , Tips , SBSC , Small Business , Small Business Server 2008 , Community...
  • EBS 2208 and SBS 2008 Upgrades & Migrations from SBS 2003 and SBS / EBS 2008

    I saw over on Nicholas's blog post - Nicholas King : EBS/SBS Upgrades & Migrations that he has started to answer some of the questions around system upgrades and migrations. Below are some snippets of key information he has shared. Read his blog post for more. However, key thoughts for me are: 1) no in box SBS 2003 -> SBS 2008 upgrades. This is a box to box migration process. If you have SA or FPP copies of SBS 2003 then you can potentially do a P2V and then migrate from the virtual image. If not, I would consider running a VM of Windows Server to enable you to move the domain at least 2) Moving from one box to another (eg hardware upgrades in the future) are now supported. This can potentially be used to go from a RC0 build to RTM, but it is not tested or supported, however that does not mean it will not work!! 3) There is a GREAT document linked below that describes a migration in glorious detail EBS/SBS Upgrades & Migrations Recently I had several people ask me whether it is possible or supported to do a build to build migration or upgrade from the RC0 of either SBS or EBS to RC1 or even RTM. Migration and Upgrade are two words often used interchangeably. Technically as you know they have some very specific meanings. Upgrade means to take the existing code base and then lay binaries over the top of, or underneath of (believe it or not this is how Vista does it!) the existing installation effectively taking the old installation and making it the new, whilst maintaining the existing configuration. Migration means setting up a completely new environment and then transferring the settings, user data and environment functionality to the new setup. Upgrades are not something we design, test or develop for either SBS or EBS . For RTM our research points to the fact that most installations have new hardware on site, and added to that the SBS architecture change from 32-bit to 64-bit prohibits us from doing in place upgrades. EBS is V1 so no upgrade requirement there. This leaves migrations, I need to be...
  • Want to legally download Microsoft Software (Vista, Office, Works, Maths and Expression) - go to the www.MicrosoftStore.co.uk (UK & Germany for now)

    I would have put money on this not happening this year, but finally there is a legal place for people to download full copies of Microsoft products. Go to http://www.MicrosoftStore.co.uk and you can buy software and download it there and then. At the moment this is limited to the UK and Germany, but I would personally expect it to go broader like all Microsoft ventures! I suspect the list of products will also expand. ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , Windows Vista , Office 2007 , Works 9 , Expression , Buy , Download , Shop
  • SBS 2008 and EBS 2008 video recordings of presentations from the SMB Summit 2008

    If you have looked at the information on setup and install at SBS 2008 Install process (in pictures) and wanted more information then these presentations will be of extreme use to you. They cover both SBS 2008 and EBS 2008. I particularly liked the setup and migration and messaging sessions. SBS 2008 product related sessions SBS 2008 Overview SBS 2008 Setup and Migration Networking Setup and Getting Started Tasks Administration and Management Networking Messaging Storage Management - Backup, Restore, and Server Storage Health and Monitoring Client Experience EBS 2008 product sessions Essential Business Server Overview Installation and Migration Administration and Management Security and Messaging Implementation Differences (between EBS 2008 and SBS 2008) If you want to see more of the information on SBS 2008 , click the link on the left ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , SBS 2008 , EBS 2008 , Small Busines Server , SBS , Essential Business Servers , Event , SMB Summit , Partner , Community , Small Business , SBSC
  • If you are a Microsoft partner who sells SBS, then please fill in the Windows Small Business Server 2008 Community Survey

    Kevin asked a couple of weeks ago if I could share this – so I’m sharing :-) The Windows Small Business Server 2008 WW Community Survey is live This is the third year we have published an SBS WW Community Survey to the SBS Community. Because of the previous surveys, we have made some adjustments in our community engagement. To name a few; we really worked on putting more focus on the Official SBS Blog. Our Sustaining Engineering team runs mini betas with our MVPs before KB's and Bug Fixes are released via Windows Update. We try to get more involvement in our techbetas from our User Groups. The list does go on. To the survey, the SBS Product Team would like to hear from the Windows SBS Community again. This survey is completely anonymous. In fact, some of you may have to sign out from Live in order to take the survey. So, if you get a PAGE NOT FOUND error message, please log out of Live and click on the link to the survey again. We want to know how valuable your experience is with the community resources and information that is available to you today as a member of the Windows SBS Community. We also want to know what you think could be done to improve your Windows SBS Community Experience. Please take a couple of minutes to provide us your candid feedback via this survey and let us know what you think. SBS WW Community Survey 2008 Thanks in advance for your feedback. Kevin Beares Community Lead - WSSG The WSSG Community Lead Blog : The Windows Small Business Server 2008 WW Community Survey is live Please fill it in David Technorati Tags: SBS 2008 , SBS 2003 , Small Business , SBSC , Partner , Microsoft , Community
  • How to configure server backup in SBS 2008

    [updated due to Vlad's link] - to see the rest of the articles on SBS 2008 click here SBS 2008, like SBS 2003, comes with a server backup tool. Unlike SBS 2003, this one supports USB drives as a great removable solution,but does not support tapes. Tapes are not really required unless you need good archival solutions as keeping a rotation of tapes in a warehouse for 10 years would be more cost effective than keeping a stack of USB drives. The Console setup process ( Once SBS is set up, how to do the basic configuration through the management console ) sets up SBS 2008 for use. As you work down the list in the console you will come to backup. The process to enable this is all quite simple: The 1st time I ran the tool I did not have a removable drive attached to the system, so it failed to start the process properly I then attached my 500GB external drive and started again. I picked my device and gave it a name: Chose what got backed up (note that everything from the system drive gets backed up!), when and then confirm everything Since the backup drives are formatted, you are given one last chance, then off it goes That completed the process before you move down the list. Finally, all the SBS 2008 entries can be found at http://davidoverton.com/blogs/doverton/archive/tags/SBS+2008/default.aspx ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , SBS 2008 , SBS , Tips , SBSC , Small Business , Small Business Server 2008 , Community , Partner , Console , Backup and Restore , Backup
  • How to configure a Smart Host for Internet e-mail in SBS 2008

    The Console setup process ( Once SBS is set up, how to do the basic configuration through the management console ) sets up SBS 2008 for use. Once the internet facing services are set up you might have to enable “Smart Hosts” – which basically means that your e-mail is sent out via your ISPs mail server. This is a simple process which I have documented below: Since I am using NTL / Virgin media as my provider, I had to send via mail.ntlworld.com. Do this and and hit next and then the system will send mail this way. That is it. One again that is it for this stage. Finally, all the SBS 2008 entries can be found at http://davidoverton.com/blogs/doverton/archive/tags/SBS+2008/default.aspx ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , SBS 2008 , SBS , Tips , SBSC , Small Business , Small Business Server 2008 , Community , Partner , Console , E-mail , Smart hosts
  • Setting up services for the internet in SBS 2008 console (domain name, web site, Remote web workplace, e-mail)

    The Console setup process ( Once SBS is set up, how to do the basic configuration through the management console ) sets up SBS 2008 for use. Once the internet settings are completed, the next big steps is setting up the internet facing services. This is the process I followed: 1) The 1st time I had to create a domain for my server 2) I chose to do this using the provided tools (this then provides DNS management of www.domain.com going to Office Live, but remote.domain.com going to this server and the MX record pointing to the SBS box too. 3) Once you have chosen your provider you go off to a web page to purchase the domain 4) Then you enter your login details It you already have a domain then the process looks like this: 1) Enter your domain and provider details 2) confirm the details and enter them as per step 4 above Continue the process from above as the tool configures the system. Note that if your router does not accept UPnP (or it is turned off, as per mine), then you will get the warning and errors shown in the middle picture below One again that is it for this stage. Finally, all the SBS 2008 entries can be found at http://davidoverton.com/blogs/doverton/archive/tags/SBS+2008/default.aspx ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , SBS 2008 , SBS , Tips , SBSC , Small Business , Small Business Server 2008 , Community , Partner , Console , Set up internet services
  • Setting up your internet connection in SBS 2008 console

    The Console setup process ( Once SBS is set up, how to do the basic configuration through the management console ) sets up SBS 2008 for use. One of the first steps is setting up the internet connection. This is the process I followed: The routines automatically detected the router IP address – I had not set it anywhere Then finished off The process of enabling others to communicate with SBS and setting up firewall etc can be found here . Finally, all the SBS 2008 entries can be found at http://davidoverton.com/blogs/doverton/archive/tags/SBS+2008/default.aspx ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , SBS 2008 , SBS , Tips , SBSC , Small Business , Small Business Server 2008 , Community , Partner , Console , Connect to the internet
  • Simple items in the SBS 2008 Console setup

    The Console setup process ( Once SBS is set up, how to do the basic configuration through the management console ) has a few items that are just one or two screens, so rather than dedicating a separate post to them, here they are by themselves: There are then the following steps that took me about 20-mins to complete: 1. Read the document on how to use the SBS console 3. Accept the Customer feedback option 5. Adding a trust certificate (I don’t have one, but I’ll show you the screen shot) ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , SBS 2008 , SBS , Tips , SBSC , Small Business , Small Business Server 2008 , Community , Partner , Console
  • Once SBS is set up, how to do the basic configuration through the management console

    [updated 5th June 2008 - as last 2 sections now online] I saw Vijays’s post on SBS 2008 RC0 Installation Walkthrough (which points to this post – walkthrough ) and while this article has much good information, I had grabbed the install process in screen shot again :-) There were a few interesting points that I thought I would share too: Once the install has finished, you need to do the post install configuration: If you have done it right you will see a screen like this: If you have had a number of problems in the install then you will see something like this: and then . I got this by hitting the power button on the keyboard while the setup was running and while I said “no” to the “do you want to shutdown” prompt, it appears it killed the setup process in the background. If you get this sort of setup, I spent a few hours trying to resolve and while I did re-install exchange and then load ForeFront, it was easier to just re-format and start again. OK, so if it is working the console should look like this: There are then the following steps that took me about 20-mins to complete: Read the document on how to use the SBS console Connect to the Internet Accept the Customer feedback option Set up the Internet address Configure a Smart Host for Internet e-mail Adding a trust certificate (I don’t have one, but I’ll show you the screen shot) Configure server backup Configure Windows Live OneCare for Server Set up Microsoft Office Live Small Business Web sites Finally, all the SBS 2008 entries can be found at http://davidoverton.com/blogs/doverton/archive/tags/SBS+2008/default.aspx ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , SBS 2008 , SBS , Tips , SBSC , Small Business , Small Business Server 2008 , Community , Partner
  • SBS 2008 Install process (in pictures)

    Having announced the SBS preview at SBS 2008 RC0 Public Preview I’ve tried to capture the SBS install process in pictures – I don’t think it needs much explanation. If you have an OEM then much of this will be resolved by the Answer kit. To find out about the OEM install process, have a look at TechNet Edge Video- SBS 2008 setup . Other blogger's have covered the release: http://sbs.seandaniel.com/2008/05/windows-small-business-server-2008_28.html http://blogs.technet.com/windowsserver/archive/2008/05/28/announcing-small-business-server-2008-rc0-public-preview.aspx http://blogs.technet.com/sbsaustralia/archive/2008/05/29/sbs-2008-public-beta-now-available-come-get-it.aspx SBS 2008 starts with something akin to Windows Server 2008 and / or Vista Setup Once this is completed, there are extra steps that are specific to SBS 2008: It is possible that your system does not meet quite the right specification – mine has less than 4GB of RAM, while not a blocker, is a warning! You need to set the clock correctly (time and time zone) to ensure all the certificates work correctly Install updates is a good idea!! Some more installs Enter the information about your organisation Now it tries to name your domain, user etc. The marketing messages while install happens: That is the setup part of the process done. The next entry will be the SBS console process to finish the install (and a few mistakes I made). See all the other SBS 2008 items at http://davidoverton.com/blogs/doverton/archive/tags/SBS+2008/default.aspx ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , Partners , SBS 2008 , SBS , Small Business , SBSC
  • SBS 2008 RC0 Public Preview

    From the official blog – the preview is now available for download After extensive development and private evaluation, I’m pleased to announce that a public preview of Windows Small Business Server 2008 RC0 is now available. Windows SBS 2008 is the next major release in the Windows Small Business Server product family, and it offers a wave of new features for technology consultants and small business owners. There are too many updates and changes to list in one post, but here are some highlights: A new setup and administrative experience that has been re-designed to make initial deployment and day-to-day management significantly easier Many new management features such as extensible monitoring reports, and tools to manage internet domain names, data folders, certificates and more A revamp of the Premium Edition to include both SQL Server 2008 Standard Edition technologies and a 2nd copy of Windows Server 2008 A new server backup wizard built on the Windows Server 2008 block-based backup technologies, which allows you to back up your server in minutes rather than hours A redesigned Remote Web Workplace with new features such as custom links, logos and user to computer mapping Built-in anti-virus and anti-spam support with 120-day trial subscriptions to Microsoft Forefront Security for Exchange Server and Windows Live OneCare for Server Integration with Microsoft Office Live Small Business to simplify setup and management of professional Web sites and extranets And of course, updates to Microsoft’s newest server technologies: Windows Server 2008, Exchange Server 2007, SQL Server 2008, Windows Server Update Services v3, and Windows SharePoint Services v3 To learn more about the product and to enroll in the public preview program, please visit http://technet.microsoft.com/evalcenter/cc184870.aspx . The Official SBS Blog : Announcing Small Business Server 2008 RC0 Public Preview See all the other SBS 2008 items at http://davidoverton.com/blogs/doverton/archive/tags/SBS+2008/default.aspx ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft...
  • Get a makeover for your Office Live Site as well as a Dell Laptop and cash too!

    I just saw this over at https://microsoft.eprize.net/officelivesaveoursiteuk/index.tbapp and thought I would share. We are offering a makeover, £540 in cash and a Dell Laptop. If you have a site, or know someone who does, then forward this on to them. ttfn David Technorati Tags: Office Live , Small Business , Competition , Microsoft , Office Live Small Business
  • Pricing for SBS 2008 and Essential Business Server 2008 released (US FPP) and public beta for EBS, with public beta for SBS 2008 to follow

    My blog has been quiet recently – think of it as a the quiet before the storm (or I’ve been maxed around quarter and year end business, family and partner visits to the US). Anyway, this has crept up on me before I re-installed my server, so I thought I would just share the love. Microsoft Announces Public Preview and Pricing for Windows Essential Server Solutions Today Microsoft announced the following prices for the Windows Essential Server Solutions family: Windows Small Business Server 2008 Standard Edition software, including five CALs, $1,089 (U.S.); additional CALs $77 each (U.S.) Windows Small Business Server 2008 Premium Edition software, including five CALs, $1,899 (U.S.); additional CALs $189 each (U.S.) Windows Essential Business Server 2008 Standard Edition software, including five CALs, $5,472 (U.S.); additional CALs $81 each (U.S.) Windows Essential Business Server 2008 Premium Edition software, including five CALs, $7,163 (U.S.); additional CALs $195 each (U.S.) We also announced availability of the public beta, which is available here: http://www.MultiplyYourPower.com Since I know this will raise some eyebrows I thought I would jump in early: Yes the price has gone up, but so has the value of what is in the box. In many scenarios, due to the single CAL purchases and reduction in Standard CAL prices, the solution will cost less for a customer than SBS 2003 today The Premium product now has a copy of Windows Server 2008 Standard Edition in it to enable SQL on a 2nd server, Terminal Server solutions and more. The Exchange and management components need to stay on the 1st server You ONLY need a Premium CAL for users who are accessing SQL, so if you don’t access SQL, then you can use the Premium product without having to move to Premium CALs, saving you money Happy to hear more about this – I will be discussing the product at the London and Liverpool group meetings over the next month. ttfn David Technorati Tags: Small Business Server 2008 , SBS 2008 , SBS , SBS 2003 , SBSC , Microsoft
  • How to sell Hosted CRM (CRM Online) in the UK and still retain your customers and a good profit – by working with Increase CRM

    [updated with contact details at 16:38] I have a partners or two that are looking to implement CRM internally and through the conversations about how they could do this came to know of the guys at Increase CRM. The good folks at Increase CRM seem to understand how SBSC partners think because the offerings they have for referral and resellers seem to be quite good to me. if you want the brochure on the subject, let me know, but here is the important piece for partners: What is the Referral Program? Partners in the Referral Program refer their customers to Increase CRM and we offer hosted Microsoft Dynamics CRM and support services directly to the customer. Typically, the partner will provide implementation consulting services and may choose to provide first and second line support. Referral Partner Commissions The Referral Program guarantees partners commissions from any customers referred to Increase CRM: Subscribers Commission 5-10 100% of the first month’s subscription fees 11-50 200% of the first month’s subscription fees 51+ 300% of the first month’s subscription fees What is the Reseller Program? Partners in the Reseller Program resell Increase CRM’s hosted services under their own brand and Increase CRM does not contract with their partner’s customer. Typically, the partner will provide all the implementation consulting, user support, system administration and billing services to the customer Reseller Wholesale Fees The Reseller Program guarantees partners a low wholesale fee for hosted Microsoft Dynamics CRM that partners can mark-up and offer to their customers, as described in the table below: No. of Users Reseller Partner User Subscription Fee 1 to 250 £30 per user per month 250+ Available on request Comparison of the Partner Programs The table below compares the two partner programs: Responsibility Referral Partner Program Reseller Partner Program Marketing Partner Partner Sales Partner Partner Setup Increase CRM Increase CRM Implementation Partner Partner First line support Increase CRM or partner Partner...
  • UK SBS group meeting in Manchester on Wednesday 23rd April 2008

    I just saw this from Chris Parks and thought I would share with a wider audience: Folks, Just a quick reminder of the meeting this Wednesday at One Central Park, Manchester M40 5WW, 18:30 ... Attending from Microsoft are David Overton, Danny Ovens and myself. Hope to see you there :) Also, a huge thanks to those who’ve either joined the online network or sent me back their profiles so far...some of them have been enlightening and some of them downright intentionally hilarious!!! (Please feel free to send through today if you get chance and haven’t done so yet :) Regards, Chris Parkes Technology Adoption & Solutions Specialist thanks David Technorati Tags: Small Business , SBSC , SBS 2003 , SBS , Manchester , Community
  • Where will your customers be looking for solutions – will they stick to on premise, or will they move towards a S+S or SaaS solution not from you?

    I know the table above is really, really simple, but I wanted to start the ball rolling – I have been thinking about this for ages!! Let me explain the diagram. The horizontal axis signifies how much of a solution is hosted. An example of this might be Office Live or Hotmail, where almost all of the solution is hosted. We then have the “on premise” or on-site IT going vertically. For most people, this is solutions like SBS 2003. A typical S+S solution might be MS CRM Online which has online components, but also enables you to go off-web and use Outlook or one of the mobile clients when on the road. While many thought on-line would be the next best thing even the king of on-line, Google, have recently admitted that it would not always be the answer in the posting they made on April 1st. Steve Clayton did the leg work and checked this was not form of April fool too!! Even the NY Times is talking about it, which to me says it really is going mainstream - http://www.nytimes.com/idg/IDG_002570DE00740E180025742400363509.html . Ok, so that is the picture out the way, now lets talk about the question. Which question you ask… well, this one: Will any of your customers be running in the “S+S or hosted” marketplace in 5+ years time? Now while that is a good question, I expect most of you will say … some, definitely not all, but some. How many customers can you afford to lose to a S+S provider? Now this leads to an even bigger question …. What will you have done to ensure they are still your customers, as opposed to someone who is skilled in S+S? Personally I find this question much more concerning as many people can’t articulate any plans they have to capture these customers!! So what do I suggest … If you are a services partner I recommend you start to look at SaaS services like Office Live that are slowly moving towards S+S or S+S services like CRM online and start to plan how you could add value to them and make money in the future. If you are an ISV, then now is the time to start to look at services like the Sync Framework...
  • Dear Susan … It is 75 CALs, but recommended for 50 users … reply to "Tom"? We'll need you to dispel another myth. - The Official Blog of the SBS "Diva"

    Susan has raised a really good point and something that is often misunderstood about SBS – and this ties in to SBS 2003 AND SBS 2008. What is the problem … Here is what Susan put… is SBS designed for 50 or 75 CALs? "Tom"? We'll need you to dispell another myth. March 11, 2008 Windows Small Business Server 2008 – HOT! Prepare for New Server-Solutions Business < http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=8493173 > Windows Small Business Server (SBS) 2008 is coming in the second half of 2008. The enhanced platform, part of the new Windows Essential Server Solutions family, is built on the Windows Server 2008 operating system and includes Microsoft Exchange Server 2007, Microsoft SQL Server 2008, and Windows SharePoint Services 3.0. With SBS 2008, you can deliver cost-effective, manageable, enterprise-class technologies to your small-business customers with up to 50 75 workstations or devices,and grow your server-solutions business. " Tom "? We're going to need you to dispell another myth that has already been started. It's not 50, it's 75. There's no change in cal count from SBS 2003. "Tom"? We'll need you to dispell another myth. - The Official Blog of the SBS "Diva" The answer is that SBS can run with up to 75 CALs, but the risk of hitting that limit is not good, so we recommend if someone is buying a new system for them to go with 50 CALs as a limit to give headroom. If they expect the server to last 3-6 years, the potential of hitting the top is there and the experience when they do is not great. Now I know that we have the transition pack for those that hit the limit, but this is about a simple positioning statement that people can understand. So, 75 CALs limit is still true, but the recommended (as it is for SBS 2003 today) is still 5-50. You will also notice that EBS has a recommended coverage of 25-250. ttfn David Technorati Tags: SBS 2003 , SBS 2003 R2 , SBS 2008 , Licensing , Microsoft , SBSC , Community
  • Manchester SBS Group (Kick Off Meeting) - 27th March 2008 - be there to see how it all starts again - with Chris Parkes, Ceri Thomas and me

    Ceri Thomas is planning a new group in Manchester and Chris Parkes will be there to host things with him for the 1st meeting. I will also be there slightly later in the evening. Below is the mail sent out by Danny Ovens to SBSC members in the area, but all are welcome. Dear Partner New: Manchester SBS Groups (Kick Off Meeting) What is the purpose of the SBS User Group....? SBS User Groups are partner meetings, run by partner, for partners. They are an independent forum that enable partners to meet one another, share best practice, learn how to better engage with IT Vendors and also hear directly from Microsoft about our products and strategies. · Partner to partner networking – how can collaborating, learning what successes others have had, sharing problems and concerns or working as a group help your business · Connect with Vendors – The group can invite Microsoft and others to attend and present to your agenda...be heard! · Plugged in to Manchester Northwest activities – We’re increasing our engagement with partners in the Northwest through events and communities and we’ll keep the forum updated with relevant news · Ability to shape the agenda of the User group in future – What works for you...? Influence the agenda to reflect your needs. The first meeting is being held in Manchester on the 27 th March and if you’d like to register your attendance please do so through the voting buttons above. [to vote from this blog entry, click here: Yes, I'd like to attend I would like to attend but can't make this date I would not like to attend thanks ] Date & Time: Thursday 27 th March, 18:30-21:00 Agenda: 18:30 Welcome, introductions. 19:00 Microsoft Update 19:45 Partner Roundtable – Issues, concerns & successes 20:45 AOB – Agree Next meeting agenda 21:00 Close Venue: One Central Park, Manchester M40 5WW Host Partner Your host partner for the evening will be Ceri Thomas (168tech.co.uk) from 168tech and he will be supported by Chris Parkes, Microsoft Technology Adoption & Solutions Specialist and Dave Overton...
  • Office Live Workspace Update for Windows Vista to enable "Open From" and "Save to" menu items in Office Word, Excel and PowerPoint

    One little feature that others might have missed with the new release of Office Live Workspace is the two nifty buttons for Office to enable direct access from the Office Live Workspace Update for Windows Vista The Office Live Workspace Update installs three Windows Vista updates (KB945435, KB945145, KB933860) and one Office 2007 update to ensure optimal performance on Windows Vista when using Microsoft Office Word, Excel, and PowerPoint with Office Live Workspace. The update improves the performance of opening and saving Workspace documents from these Office programs. In some cases, the update also resolves problems with "Open from Office Live" and "Save to Office Live" functions of the Office Live Add-in . This update is only needed for computers running Windows Vista. Download details: Office Live Workspace Update for Windows Vista ttfn David Technorati Tags: Live , Office Live Small Business , Office Live , Office Live Workspace , Vista , Windows Vista , Save to , Open From
  • Office Live Workspace is now available (in beta) for all - aka Windows SharePoint Services for all small businesses

    According to the site Workspaces (WSS for Office Live users) is now not quite out of beta, but still has a lot to offer: Anywhere Access Save 1000+ Microsoft Office documents in one place Access them from almost any computer with a Web browser No more flash drives or sending yourself documents via e-mail Learn more Share with Others Invite people to your workspace You control who can view, comment, and edit your documents Stop manually merging versions from multiple people Learn more Extend the Microsoft Office Experience Open and save files directly from Word, Excel, and PowerPoint Synchronize contact, task, and event lists with Outlook No need to learn a new program Learn more In terms of what is actually new: Public availability of Office Live Workspace beta at http://workspace.officelive.com with immediate access and no waitlist (English language version only) The easy way to save Office documents to/from the web Organise documents and projects online and work on them from almost any computer (full Firefox support) Invite others to view, edit or comment on documents and workspaces Full document versioning and time-stamping View and comment on documents in the browser, even if Office is not installed Create simple Web notes and Web lists (export to Excel and/or synch with Outlook) Share screen and documents in real time through integration with Microsoft SharedView Brand new features, such as an activity panel, notifications, direct links and multifile upload While this is all very nice, there is actually some excellent materials, including videos and more explaining much at Permanent Link to Microsoft Office Live Workspaces Goes Live and some commentary about Google vs Office Live here and from Tech Radar here which goes as far as to say: Microsoft has launched its equivalent of Google Docs - but without the ability to edit documents. It’s left the actual editing of documents to Office itself and offers Office Live Workspace as a way for individuals and small businesses to share files on the web. A nifty Office...
  • More ways to engage with customers using the Microsoft advertising campaigns

    [updated 4th March] Many people congratulated Microsoft after the Mr Busy campaigns allowed partners to drive their customers back to them using a MS campaign. Well, this is now being repeated for a number of campaigns. Today I found the click and go site to get them all ( http://www.campaigns.arvato-services.com/ ). You can get 200 post cards or 1,000 e-mails for free and then a low price for additional cards/ e-mails if required. The campaigns covered include: Business Productivity Customer Acquisition and Retention Security and Reliability Small Business PC Mr Busy This method of engaging is not new to the Small Business team and others have covered this before (eg Susanne here ), but it is worth re-highlighting this now as some of the campaigns have been renewed, so go back and visit the site!! ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , Marketing , Campaigns , Business Productivity , Customer Acquisition and Retention , Security and Reliability , Small Business PC , Mr Busy , Partner , SME , Small Business Server 2008 , Mid-Market
  • Microsoft Office Live Small Business v2 - have you got it already?

    This happened a couple of weeks ago, but it is always worth sharing the improvements in Office Live. Not only do we have this going on, but we also have the beta of Workspaces progressing. Remember, your customers could benefit from Office Live and if you don't offer it, someone else might just offer them Office Live or something else, blocking you out from that customer as they grow in size. Microsoft Office Live Small Business is the award-winning, easy-to-use suite of Web-based software and services designed to help small businesses affordably take, promote and manage their businesses online. Used by nearly 600,000 customers worldwide, Office Live Small Business is available in the US, UK, France, Germany and Japan. The service also provides an excellent environment within which partners can build industry-specific solutions. Office Live Small Business is now available with : Full Firefox 2.0 support for PC & Mac Easy-to-use Website Designer tool or use html/3rd party design tools Outlook Connector for offline synching of email, calendar, contacts & tasks Mobile access to email, calendar and contacts from Windows-Powered SmartPhones or PocketPCs Solutions Packager for Web designers FREE when you sign up : Domain name * 500MB fully hosted Website Up to 100 email accounts Contact Manager Document Manager Project Manager Workspace * (.co.uk free for the first 2 years or .com, org, net, .eu free for the first year) Additional affordable features : E-mail marketing beta Search marketing More storage, users and tools Simple Windows Live ID signup process. No need to validate with a credit card any more ! What are you waiting for ? Read more details and signup now at : smallbusiness.officelive.com See what you can do with it. David Technorati Tags: Small Business , Office Live , Office Live Small Business , Web site , domain , e-mail , workspaces , document manager
  • Answers to some of the questions about SBS 2008 (32-bit 2nd server, SCE, beta upgrades, migrating users

    [updated 23rd Feb 2008] After posting on SBS 2008 the other day I've had a few questions, so here are some answers Can the 2nd server be x64 or x86 (32-bit) and can it be used for Terminal Services / Hyper-V / a.n.other purpose The 2nd server can be 32 or 64-bit. It is essentially Windows Server 2008 Standard edition, however it does check it is part of a SBS domain. Therefore it can be used for almost anything a Windows Server can be used for (and SQL can be loaded on it too) Why was System Center Essentials removed from SBS 2008 The short answer is that this was not the right product for SBS owners, however SBS can be used / works with SCE. For this reason SCE can, for example, be loaded on the the 2nd server Can I install SBS 2008 beta (cougar) in my production environment and upgrade to RTM when it releases The answer here is one about the fact that betas are betas and have bugs, so there are risks. Officially the answer is “don’t consider using Cougar beta in your production environment unless you are on the TAP as any problems / migration / upgrades will be unsupported. Should you do so, your only access to any support and guidance will be via the newsgroups” If someone has recently purchased hardware for SBS 2003, can they move to SBS 2008 SBS 2008 has migration wizards that will enable the move from one machine to another. For those where they wish to use existing hardware there is NO in-place upgrade, however you should be able to do the following (assuming the hardware is x64 capable): 1) Copy their existing setup to a virtual machine 2) Install SBS 2008 onto the original hardware and use the migration tools to move SBS to the same box or 1) Backup their SBS 2003 system 2) Install SBS 2008 on the existing hardware 3) Add data back from backup (this is a manual process) Can SBS 2008 be used with Hyper-V Yes, we’re in the process of testing which virtualization scenarios SBS 2008 and EBS 2008 will support, and will provide more information in the future. Can SBS 2003 CALs be used with SBS 2008 No, SBS...
  • More information on SBS 2008

    I was reading over at Sean Daniel's blog about more info on SBS 2008 and realised there are a couple of pages you need to look at ( Learn more with a product overview ). I've also posted some answers to questions here . Affordable, Integrated Solution Windows Small Business Server 2008 is designed for small businesses. It is designed to work with existing technology, build on Microsoft best practices, and delivers a comprehensive network at an affordable price. Have virtually anytime, anywhere access to your business desktop; including e-mail, files, business applications, and more. Share resources and equipment, such as Internet access, printers, and fax machines, to get the most value from your technology investments. Enjoy compatibility and scalability. As your business needs to change, Windows Small Business Server 2008 can change with you--easily add users, servers and applications, or expand into other Microsoft technologies. Work more efficiently and add more value to your business with an integrated administrative console. Work confidently with a top performing network based on Windows Server 2008 technologies. Protect Your Business Data Windows Small Business Server 2008 helps protect your vital business information from loss, by automatically backing up the computers and servers in your network and helping enable you to recover accidentally deleted files. Use anti-virus and anti-spam protection to help protect your information from malicious attacks, viruses, and spam. Keep your computers and servers current and your network healthy and up to date with the latest updates. Get better control over your business and business information with daily and weekly reports alerting you on the health and security of your technology. A single administrative console gives you or your IT consultant a daily view of PCs and servers and makes it easier to manage common IT tasks. Get an at-a-glance snapshot of the security and health of your PCs and servers from a 'green check' report. Grow Your Business Capacity...
  • Microsoft Windows Essential Server Solutions - Which one is right for you?

    There is lots of information on how to choose the right Essential solution for you (SBS Std, Premium, EBS Std or Premium. A quick sample can be seen below (there is much more on the web site): Which Solution Is Right for You? Learn how the Windows Essential Server Solutions are designed to fit specific needs for small and midsize business. Find which solution will be the right choice for you and your company’s needs. Remember, each business is unique – consult your Microsoft Certified Partner to help determine the best solution for you. Your Need Windows Small Business Server 2008 Windows Essential Business Server 2008 Standard Edition Premium Edition Standard Edition Premium Edition Company Size and Growth Our company needs a secure network for 250 or fewer users today Microsoft Windows Small Business Server 2008 supports up to 50 users or devices. Microsoft Windows Essential Business Server 2008 supports up to 250 users or devices. Our business is growing at a fast pace and our IT needs are expanding. As your business needs change, these products provide a “technology building block” for additional servers and a seamless transition to the full line of Microsoft Server products, using Transition Packs. We recommend you decide based on your 1-yr and 2-yr growth plans, as well as on your current and future application and performance needs. We are acquiring other companies and need to connect with their data and email immediately until we can incorporate everything into our server network. The Windows Essential Server Solutions products are meant to be the primary network and email system and not a down-level branch office or subsidiary solution. ttfn David Technorati Tags: Small Business , Small Business Server 2008 , SBS 2008 , Windows Small Business Server 2008 , SBSC , Microsoft , Partner , Community
  • Small Business Server 2008 (formally known as Cougar) announcement

    Today is the start of the Server 2008 PR ramp up. I can today tell you a bit more about Cougar, as was, or SBS 2008 as it will be, the new "family" that SBS is part of and a bit more on Windows Essential Business Server 2008 (aka Centro). Hopefully there will be a couple of surprises and also confirmation of some of the rumours around there. I've sliced the press release made today into 3 sections. This blog entry is based on the SBS 2008 section of which there is an extract below of some key points. The whole press release can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2008/feb08/02-20EBFamilyPR.mspx . Windows Small Business Server 2008 Multiplies Business Growth Windows Small Business Server 2008,previously known by the code name “Cougar,” is ideal for organizations with up to 50 PCs, helping them protect business data, expand business productivity and present a professional image to customers. The new version adds a range of features and capabilities to the current, award-winning Small Business Server 2003 R2 product, and is also an example of Microsoft’s “software plus services” vision. For small-business owners and employees, Small Business Server 2008 provides increased security and protection with one-year trial subscriptions to Microsoft Forefront Security for Exchange Server Small Business Edition and the new Windows Live OneCare for Server, and with dramatically simplified server and PC backup technologies. Small Business Server 2008 also integrates with Microsoft Office Live Small Business to simplify setup and management of professional Web sites and private online work spaces. Enhancements to Remote Web Workplace, integration of Windows SharePoint Services 3.0, and support for the latest Windows Mobile devices will help employees work remotely and collaborate effectively. For IT managers and technology consultants, Small Business Server 2008 deployment, setup and administration is greatly simplified and improved. A powerful administration console, new monitoring across servers...
  • Windows Essential Business Server announcement

    Today is the start of the Server 2008 PR ramp up. I can today tell you a bit more about Cougar, as was, or SBS 2008 as it will be, the new "family" that SBS is part of and a bit more on Windows Essential Business Server 2008 (aka Centro). Hopefully there will be a couple of surprises and also confirmation of some of the rumours around there. I've sliced the press release made today into 3 sections. This blog entry is based on the Essential Business Server 2008 section of which there is an extract below of some key points. The whole press release can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2008/feb08/02-20EBFamilyPR.mspx . <snipped> Windows Essential Business Server 2008 for Midsize Companies Windows Essential Business Server 2008 is designed for the needs of midsize organizations with up to 250 desktops, helping IT professionals take control of their systems, reduce time spent “fighting fires” and focus more on strategic efforts to drive business growth. The solution includes built-in IT best practices and provides a unified console for management of key workloads and product licensing, which makes IT budgeting and purchase simpler and more predictable. Windows Essential Business Server combines the technologies of Windows Server 2008, Exchange Server 2007, Forefront Security for Exchange Server, System Center Essentials 2007, the next version of Internet Security and Acceleration Server and, in the Premium Edition, SQL Server 2008 technology. The product will be demonstrated on IBM BladeCenter S and HP BladeSystem c-Class c3000 hardware at the “Heroes Happen Here” launch on Feb. 27 in Los Angeles, and is slated for availability in the second half of 2008. <snipped> More information about Windows Essential Server Solutions is available at http://www.microsoft.com/essential and http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/presskits/serversolutions . Now much of this is a repeat of what we already know, but I felt I should share it: Based on x64 technology Capable from 25-250 users, so does...
  • "Windows Essential Server Solutions family of products" announcement

    Today is the start of the Server 2008 PR ramp up. I can today tell you a bit more about Cougar, as was, or SBS 2008 as it will be, the new "family" that SBS is part of and a bit more on Windows Essential Business Server 2008 (aka Centro). Hopefully there will be a couple of surprises and also confirmation of some of the rumours around there. I've sliced the press release made today into 3 sections. This blog entry is based on the "family" section of which there is an extract below of some key points. The whole press release can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2008/feb08/02-20EBFamilyPR.mspx . To help small and midsize organizations improve business efficiency, increase productivity and drive growth, Microsoft Corp. introduced the Windows Essential Server Solutions family of products, built on Windows Server 2008 and the newest Microsoft server technologies and services. The company also unveiled details about the newly named Windows Small Business Server 2008. The Windows Essential Server Solutions family includes Windows Small Business Server 2008 and Windows Essential Business Server 2008 for midsize companies. Microsoft conducted extensive research and gathered in-depth feedback worldwide to design the solutions, in order to meet the unique needs of small and midsize customers and partners. The products integrate the technologies of Windows Server 2008, Microsoft Exchange Server 2007, and other Microsoft products and services into all-in-one solutions that are reliable, easy to manage and able to grow with customers. “There are 31.9 million small businesses and 1.2 million midsize companies worldwide in need of powerful IT solutions, * and they typically have very small IT staffs, or none at all,” said Bob Kelly, corporate vice president at Microsoft. “Windows Essential Server Solutions make the benefits of enterprise-class IT accessible, affordable and simpler for smaller organizations and their technology advisors.” Windows Small Business Server 2008 Multiplies Business...
  • Bye Bye Jen Brinton, Hello Lisa and Chris for the UK SBSC and small business partners

    I saw this mail (I have been out the country) while I was away and thought I would share it with those of you. For those of you who don't know who Jen is, she was the person behind the SBSC programme in the UK and was part of the fighting force to get you things like Demo Showcase. Now strangely enough, Chris, some of you will have met - he is a great mate of mine, technical and also the hero of the Demo Showcase. He is known for getting passionate about technology and it being used correctly, so he is an ideal person to get to know! Anyway, here was the e-mail to SBSC members: New Faces as Microsoft Hi All I wanted update you all on some new faces at Microsoft who will be focused on the Small Business Specialist community as part of our continued focus to increase investment in this area. I would also like to take this chance to let you know that I am sad to have to say good-bye to you all! I have thoroughly enjoyed my time as SBSC programme manager and will miss working with you all, however I will be transitioning now to a new role. Firstly I would like to introduce Lisa White to you. Lisa brings a wealth of experience working in IT and the software industry both at Microsoft and beyond. She will be responsible for the small business specialist community going forward as well as having a broader remit around focusing on fostering a strong sense of community within the Microsoft channel. Her first day in her new role will be March 10th. Secondly I would also like to introduce Chris Parkes to you. He is a partner technical specialist who you will soon have the chance to meet. He will be focused on evangelizing Microsoft’s core technologies within the Small Business Specialist Community and brings a huge amount of expertise in the area – many of you know him already! Microsoft’s commitment to the SBSC programme remains strong with a specific focus on continually improving the value that partners receive from the programme. There is a great deal of internal support for the SBSC community and we’re looking forward...
  • Import and export business data in Business Contact Manager 2007 - Outlook with Business Contact Manager - Microsoft Office Online

    Again, something I have been asked before - how to get data into and out of BCM - have a look at Import and export business data in Business Contact Manager 2007 - Outlook with Business Contact Manager - Microsoft Office Online Import and export business data in Business Contact Manager 2007 You can use the Business Data Import and Export wizard to import (import: To bring information from one system or program into another. The system or program receiving the data must somehow support the internal format or structure of the data.) data into or export (export: To copy your Business Contact Manager for Outlook business data to a file of a different format for use in a database, a spreadsheet, or another program.) data from Business Contact Manager for Outlook 2007. What do you want to do? Import data Export data Use the wizard to update an existing database with information from another database ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , BCM , Business Contact Manager , Office 2007 , Office System , CRM , Small Business
  • Business Contact Manager Team Blog - good information, including SQL and VBA tools, Smartphone and product information

    I was hunting for an answer to a questions someone asked me and I came across this the BCM Team Blog. Below are some of the recent posts. It is worth adding to your RSS feed list. Troubleshooting BCM for Pocket PC/Smartphone Get Business Contact Manager with Outlook Standalone How to Change BCM Polling Interval? Happy Holidays Business Contact Manager for Outlook 2007 SP1 is Live Business Contact Manager Team Blog ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , BCM , Business Contact Manager , Office 2007 , Office System , CRM , Small Business
  • Do you have a good story to tell about you, your customer and the use of Microsoft technology? If so, get your name up in lights (well, the web) and get Microsoft to tell everyone about it

    Microsoft is currently looking for Small Business case studies about how customers use Microsoft products. These case studies include the name of the partner used to install the solution and so are a great way of generating completely free publicity. Case studies are mainly targeted at a customer audience and will be used on our customer website's, in newsletters, in collateral and sometimes in the press. If you would like to nominate any of your customers please go to www.articulatemarketing.com/partner.html and fill in the short form with their details. After you have submitted their details no further work is required from you as we will contact the customer directly for a short interview. Both yourselves and the customer will then be able to review any case studies before they are used. ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , Small Business , Case Studies
  • New Small Business Oriented blog - Microsoft Police (entry on licensing) and Vista bloody Vista (who's fault is it when things don't work on Vista)

    Susanne Dansey pointed this out to me - Dave is doing some excellent blogging! I like both these entries from January. One discussed the rights and wrongs of what to do with a customer who will not license legally. My personal opinion here is that if they won't pay a software company, how long until they will avoid paying the services company for a quality job. Dave's second post is dealing with someone who has been told that Vista is poor and blames anything that does not work under Vista on Microsoft. I'm not saying that Microsoft is never to blame, but it is nice to see posts like this coming out of the woodwork. Microsoft Police There has been a lot of chatter in the newsgroups recently about Microsoft licensing and what to do if you think the legality of clients software is suspect. Here is my opinion. Funny that, it being my blog Simple, get them to become legitimate (or legal) or walk away. Let’s clarify this. Why I said legitimate or legal is because these can be two separate things. Why? well frankly, just because Microsoft and it’s lawyers say something should be the case, it doesn’t mean that it is the law. <snipped - click link above to read more> Vista, bloody Vista! I was having a friendly discussion in the pub at the weekend and was introduced to a college lecturer. He spoke quite fluently about IT in his college even though he admitted he is not very technically minded. Then it came…Why Vista he asked, it knackers things, so his techie people tell him? Windows 98 which he has at home is fine GRRRR! Except, it isn’t fine. His PC was falling apart at the seams, things just weren’t working. The more I questioned the more it became like a broken record. Why had Microsoft not left things alone. The fact that his quite clearly 18million year old dial-up modem wasn’t working was obviously Microsofts fault. They only update things in order to screw money out of poor victims like him. (This did stay friendly I hasten to add and many more pints were...
  • Report: Small businesses moving to Vista fastest | InfoWorld | News | 2008-01-14 | By Elizabeth Montalbano, IDG News Service

    Yes this is a US report, but I believe a similar move is happening in the UK Nearly half of businesses polled in a recent survey are in some phase of updating to Vista, and of those companies, 53 percent are small businesses By Elizabeth Montalbano, IDG News Service January 14, 2008 Nearly half of businesses are in some phase of preparing to update desktops to Windows Vista with small businesses moving the fastest to implement the OS, according to a new report released Monday. The number of organizations evaluating and testing Vista increased from 29 percent in February 2007 to 48 percent by early November 2007, found the report, commissioned by reseller CDW and based on information collected by Walker Information from 772 IT decision makers. Moreover, about 35 percent of companies are currently implementing or have implemented Vista already, compared to 12 percent last February, the report said. The report is the third of a wave of reports on Vista adoption that CDW has done since the OS was in its final testing phases in October 2006. In the latest phase of release, which tracked Vista adoption from October 31 until Nov. 7, 2007, small businesses comprised 53 percent of those companies either using or evaluating Vista. The higher-education segment came in second, with 49 percent reporting that they are evaluating or using the OS, while medium-to-large businesses were third, with 48 percent. Because of lingering hardware and application compatibility issues between existing company IT assets and Vista, CDW still advises customers to move to Vista on a case-by-case basis, said David Cottingham, director of product and partner management at CDW. In the case of small businesses, they may not have the application or hardware dependencies on Windows XP that larger businesses have. "There are still definitely concerns when you get into custom applications in industries that will run on XP," he said. "If [companies] have custom applications that don't run on Vista yet, they're going to stay on XP...
  • SBS 2003, Virtual Server and / or Terminal Services and why use virtualisation and the risks to consider

    I need to take my hat off to the PSS guys in India. I "met" Girish on the Microsoft internal aliases and then delivering a Technet chat. I've since seen him post some great blog posts, but also answer key questions in various SBS forums. Alex recently asked the question: They (well I) think it is time to virtualise the three SBS servers that support their three micro businesses (plus a terminal server each). Lower energy costs (down to 1 server from 3), quieter in their office. Girish has recently blogged something that would help implement this: Content Released: Deploying Terminal Services in a Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2 Environment Deploying Terminal Services in a Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2 Environment This document updates and replaces both "Deploying Windows Server 2003 Terminal Server to Host User Desktops in a Windows Small Business Server Environment" and "Installing Virtual Server 2005 R2 on Windows Small Business Server 2003 with SP1." Kudos to SBS UA team and the SBS Support Staff. Now, he also commented in the SBS forum with some great advice: There are a huge number of caveats that make this a very complex and usually disappointing option. Make sure your understand these KBs: 909840 Windows SharePoint Services and SharePoint Portal Server 2003 do not support Virtual PC and Virtual Server for production environments http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;909840 840319 A list of supported host operating systems that you can use to run Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;840319 897613 Microsoft Virtual Server support policy http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;897613 320220 Support policy for Exchange Server 2003 running on hardware virtualization software http://vkbexternal/VKBWebService/ViewContent.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;320220 897614 Windows Server System software not supported within a Microsoft Virtual Server environment http://vkbexternal/VKBWebService/ViewContent...
  • Download the "How to Sell, Deploy, and Build Business with Microsoft Windows Sharepoint Services 3.0 and SBS 2003 R2" now

    I have been asked about this loads of times, but for those of you who want to know more about using WSS v3 and SBS 2003, the guide is finally here at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=59acc518-023e-43c3-b8f3-378c5e387461 . How to Sell, Deploy, and Build Business with Microsoft Windows Sharepoint Services 3.0 and SBS 2003 R2 Partner tool to create solutions using Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 and Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2. File Name: Selling_WSS_and_SBS_Kit.zip Date Published: 11/15/2007 Overview A new partner enablement tool helps you create solutions using Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 and Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2. Access the toolkit’s resources—including a process cookbook, technical documentation and marketing materials—to learn how to build your business by selling and deploying customized solutions. ttfn David Technorati Tags: SBS 2003 R2 , SBSC , WSS v3 , WSS , SharePoint , Windows SharePoint Services
  • Action Pack - you now have to take an exam to qualify ... so do so!

    I suspect that you will have seen this everywhere before, but just in case, see below - notice that SBSC and Web Developers, designers and agencies get an even more valueable kit: Enhancing the value of Microsoft Action Pack Subscription In response to feedback from our partners, on 30 November 2007 we will unveil a new renewal and subscription procedure, as well as launch two new special edition kits. This is all part of our continual effort to enhance the value of the Microsoft Action Pack Subscription (MAPS), our quarterly toolkits of software and resources that help our Registered Partners stay competitive, meet their sales goals and grow their business. Essential courses and assessments Starting 30 November, new MAPS subscribers must take an online course and pass an assessment (with a score of 70% or higher). From 1 March 2008, those partners that would like to renew their subscription will also be required to take an online course and pass an assessment. Most courses run for an hour, while our straight forward assessments take just 30 minutes. All are 100% subsidised. Launch of special edition kits We're launching two new editions, supplementary to the standard Action Pack kit and offered to qualified partners up to twice per year, at no additional cost. They include: Small Business Specialist Community toolkit for actively enrolled Microsoft Small Business Specialist Partners. Toolkit for Web developers, designers and agencies. Ideal for partners wanting to build a business practice with Web offerings. If you have any questions regarding your current Action Pack subscription, please call the Regional Service Centre on 0800 917 3128 . ttfn David Technorati Tags: Action Pack , SBSC , Web Developers , Developers
  • What is in Office Accounting for accountants... well, multiple account views, sharing, customisation and more, but it is not an practice management solution

    I saw that someone said on one of the online forums that there was not anything in Office Accounting for Accountants. I beg to differ. This product is not something that offers anywhere near the same capabilities of someone like Iris for Practice Management - it is not designed to do so, it is aimed at small businesses who want a simple to use accounting package and then a tool for accountants to simply extract and manage data from it. I am not an accountant, but Microsoft offer several areas for Accountants with Office Accounting: Ability to customise the product to brand it for a specific organisation, such as an accountant, ISV or partner Ability to monitor several people's accounts from the one place and gather updates via an secure online process (through Office Live) Client sends accounts to accountant, continues using them and then the changes are synchronised back from accountant without data loss Run payroll for multiple clients Single Journal entry with VAT that spans multiple dates, customers and suppliers Full audit on transactions and modifications to spot fraudulent actions easier Ability to produce a number of the reports that accountants may well want to automate A Microsoft backed network designed to listen to the needs of accountant and deliver further benefits for them - aka Microsoft Professional Accountants' Network which also provides the following software and support benefits: Free Support Free unlimited support until September 2009 Access to managed newsgroups Access to invitation-only training events specifically for accounting professionals Free Software One complimentary license of Microsoft Office Accounting Professional 2008 One complimentary license of Microsoft Office Small Business Edition 2007 All in all I would say that was quite a lot for something that is potentially free for customers and free for accountants!! ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft Office Accounting , Office Accounting , Office System , MPAN , Microsoft Professional Accountants Network , Accounting , Accountant
  • Data recovery for small businesses by true professionals

    A while back I had the pleasure of working with some guys in one of the UK's largest and probably most capable data recovery companies. They did everything from simple recoveries to physically broken media recovery and proved that the excuse "the dog ate my homework Mrs Teacher" could be proven and recovered from. Well, that was then. Now a group from this company, including Justin who I worked with have broken away to create their own small business and they continue to offer a huge amount of experience and are keen to work with SBSC partners to build their network and solutions. They offer 8 people each with years of experience from one of the leading recovery vendors Clean blench facilities for handling all levels of hardware related data recovery from all storage media. No fix no fee and trade pricing from less than £200 [ed: they did name a price, but I decided you could go talk to them to learn more] . Flexible service options. Standard services turnaround in an average of 2-3 days. Computer forensics and electronic discovery capabilities also. Justin said to me "I am sure you are aware of lots of companies offering data recovery services at the logical or software fix level, but we are really into the physically damaged drives with issues such as burn out chips on the PCB, head crashes or even seized bearings that most smaller DR companies have issues dealing with." I've used them for both simple and complex recoveries and it was always worth it. To contact them go and have a look at Palmer Data Recovery or can also e-mail Justin directly at jreynolds@palmerdata.com . ttfn David Technorati Tags: Data recovery , Small Business , SBSC
  • Where to get lots and lots of information on BCM (Business Contact Manager) 2007

    I found this blog and realised several things. 1) The Brelsford family (no, they are not related) are very good in the small business space. 2) I now have a BCM 2007 hero. Who am I talking about? Bill Brelsford - http://blog.rebarbusinessbuilders.com/about.html - who says "For the past 20 years, I have been working with and for small businesses in a variety of roles." I love BCM and here are some of the things he has written about BCM. It is worth noting that Bill does not just write about BCM, but many things including marketing and many other issues that a small business would face. BCM: Setting Up Marketing Campaigns in BCM Tracking Customer Anniversary Dates in BCM Getting Started Managing Suspects in BCM Small Business CRM It has to be worth a look. ttfn David Technorati Tags: Business Contact Manager , BCM , Small Business
  • Microsoft's Small Business Blog : Fancy winning £5,000?

    I saw this at Microsoft's Small Business Blog : Fancy winning £5,000? and thought I would pass it on. Fancy winning £5,000? We’ve just launched the Microsoft Office Live £5,000 prize draw and you’re amongst the first to hear about it. You have the chance to win £5,000 or one of several £100 Amazon gift cards. Just click the link and enter the prize draw at https://microsoft.eprize.net/officeliveuk . If you haven't explored Office Live yet it really is worth spending some time looking at what it could do for your business. Microsoft Office Live is a set of Internet-based tools aimed at helping small businesses to quickly and easily create a professional web presence. ttfn David Technorati Tags: Small Business , Office Live
  • Office Accounting Professional 2008 ships in the UK ... download the free Express version, buy or try the Professional version for extra features (Multi user, SQL support, sales order, purchase order etc) and also sign up for online services (Paypal, BACS

    Microsoft Office Accounting Professional 2008 It is finally here!! There are 2 major versions - the free version and the paid for version, plus a number of add-on services you might want to buy too. You can get lots of information at http://www.msofficeaccounting.co.uk/default.aspx and if you are an accountant then the Microsoft Professional Accounting Network is for you ( http://accounting.microsoft.com/mpanuk.aspx ). You can download the Express Version here: You can Download Free Trial here It says about itself: Microsoft® Office Accounting Professional is an easy to use, comprehensive accounting package that works with other Office applications you already know. Easy to learn and use Works just like Word, Excel and Outlook Get started in minutes with wizards that import your data Save time managing everyday tasks Share and reuse data across Word, Excel and Outlook Manage customers, suppliers, employees and stock Pay bills, track expenses, send invoices and bank online Get a complete view of your business Run customisable reports so you always know how you’re doing See all your important data in one glance with the Digital Dashboard Get reminders of important deadlines, pending bills and overdue invoices Product Overview information is available here: Product Overview Product Overview Below are the product features and the comparison between the 2 versions Top Features Click for details Get up and running in minutes Import data from Sage © or Excel * Choose from dozens of business templates to set up your company Work in the familiar Microsoft Office interface Visit the Resource Centre to get help with common questions Save time on everyday tasks Track your income and expenses Manage customers, suppliers and employees Print cheques, create quotes and invoices Bank online and download transactions Get paid faster with PayPal invoices Get reminders for recurring documents and activities Save time with Office integration Track billable time, create quotes and send invoices in Outlook Export reports to Excel with one...
  • Do you know who should be the British Small Business Champion 2008? If so, you might want to read this press release as it also carries a £10,000 prize

    My good friend Peter Scargill is the IT Chair at the FSB ( http://www.fsb.org.uk ) who have spent a good deal of time adopting Microsoft Technology. While looking at their recent press releases I noticed that they have the Small Business Champion 2008 competition running. FSB launches British Small Business Champions 2008 Date: Monday, November 12, 2007 Ref: PR 2007 83 FSB News Release PR/2007/83 Issue date: Monday 12 November 2007 FSB launches British Small Business Champions 2008 The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) today launches British Small Business Champions 2008 (BSBC) to coincide with the start of Enterprise Week. BSBC is the only national awards scheme solely for small businesses. Entries are invited from thriving businesses that are well run and highly regarded by staff and customers. Businesses have to have been trading for at least five years at the time of entering and employ no more than fifty staff. Across the UK, six Area Champions will be chosen and these six businesses will go forward to the national final. One business will be chosen as the National Champion and scoop the top prize of £10,000. For BSBC 2008 there are two additional categories: Young Entrepreneur and Most Promising New Business, both sponsored by AIMS Accountants. These have been chosen as a way for the FSB to show support for the new generation of up-and-coming businesses. Entries in both will go straight to national judging. BSBC was launched by the Federation of Small Businesses in 2002. It is now firmly established as the most prestigious and highly valued of business awards for the small business sector. What former winners say about BSBC: “Entering BSBC is a good exercise for you and your business. It makes you focus on what is good about your business…and helps you identify any weaknesses. I hate forms. Running a small business we have so many. The BSBC one was pretty straightforward.” Graham Barnard, The Happy Hutch Company, BSBC National Champion and Northern Area Champion 2007. continued at FSB Press Releases Got to...
  • UK SMB Girl » DemoShowcase goes SBSC

    This is old news, but in-case you have not seen it, here we go. The Demo Showcase is an extremely valuable sales and learning tool, but it is also a benefit of the being a Certified Partner. Most SBSC partners are not Certified partners though, so this is a great win. DemoShowcase goes SBSC October 25th, 2007 Great news! Microsoft Corp. have finally allowed one of the greatest tools that bridges the gap between the techies and the sales teams. Vijay announced it on his blog after the much anticipated Worldwide SBSC PALs meeting. Thank you to Nigel Postings and Chris Parkes for taking the feedback the Community has been generating over the last few months regarding this and helping to make a difference with the big guns. Keep an eye out for it in your Action Packs (I assume?) UK SMB Girl » DemoShowcase goes SBSC ttfn David Technorati Tags: SBSC , Demo Showcase
  • Microsoft lends a tech hand to U.K. startups

    I feel very close to this team... they sit just down a bit from me :-) All good stuff, plus go to the website if you have something you think could be a candidate. Microsoft lends a tech hand to U.K. startups Microsoft's Startup Accelerator Program will help startups use software technology such as Silverlight and Live Services</WEBTEASER _extended="true"> By Jeremy Kirk, IDG News Service Microsoft will assist U.K. startups in using its software technology under a program launched on Monday by CEO Steve Ballmer. The Startup Accelerator Program will include technologies such as Silverlight , Microsoft's multimedia browser plug-in, and Live Services , a group of Web-based applications. Microsoft will also offer assistance in business development, marketing, and sales. Microsoft stands to gain momentum if startup companies are successful in building applications based on its technology. The program could also put Microsoft closer to key startups with technology that Microsoft would rather buy than develop itself. At least five companies have joined the program so far: Ether Digital, which has a platform for video content over IP; Zebtab, which has a desktop video application; Corebridge, involved in customer relationship management and communication software; ViaPost, which focuses on electronic document delivery; and Miomi, with a Web site that lets people mesh their own content with interactive timelines. Microsoft already has the U.K. Emerging Business Team , which works with startup companies and venture capital organizations. Microsoft lends a tech hand to U.K. startups | InfoWorld | News | 2007-10-01 | By Jeremy Kirk, IDG News Service ttfn David Technorati Tags: Startups , Microsoft , Silverlight , Live Services , UK
  • Be there or be square - Westcoast Small Business Forum - 29th November, Reading

    What can I say - an amazing line up of presenters, plus a chance to throw pies at me as I do a song and dance for 1 hour. Seriously though, look at the agenda and wonder how you survived without it!! Westcoast Small Business Forum Get yourself booked onto our Small Business Forum which takes place on November 29th at Microsoft’s Thames Valley Campus. Spaces are limited (unless you’re happy to sit on laps?!) so get yourself booked on now. First come, first served. Full details are available by clicking here . We’ll be updating it with a few more events that are coming up this year in the UK that we think you’ll be interested in. Look forward to seeing you there! Oh, and guess who’s also found another site to blog on… UK SMB Girl » Westcoast Small Business Forum ttfn David Technorati Tags: If you only read one post today , Small Business , SBSC , Community , Westcoast , Event
  • What's In A 'Small-Business' Label? - Forbes.com

    I saw this and thought I would share it. As small business partners we need to decide what the "Small Business" means and tell our partners and customers. It is not about sticking a label on something that fits everything, but actually customising it for the real small business customer. And I don't mean the less than 1,000 person business, but the sub 100, sub 50 and even sub 10. It is worth reading the rest of the article to see what is said about brand and laptops. What's In A 'Small-Business' Label? Lisa LaMotta , 09.12.07, 6:00 AM ET It's one of the oldest marketing tricks in the book: Make the same product, but sell it to a new audience. That's what large retailers and manufactures have been doing lately to tap the lucrative small-to-medium-sized business (SMB) segment. Last month, for example, Best Buy (nyse: BBY - news - people ) added a Professional Series label, which signifies products putatively geared for small businesses, though many have mass appeal as well. Dell Computer (nasdaq: DELL - news - people ) insists its new Vostro line of notebooks is perfect for small fries, while virtually all the options are available on other machines. And AT&T (nyse: T - news - people ) sells the same telephone and cable connections under the SMB banner as they do for plain old consumers. Can you blame these guys? See-through as this strategy sounds, it's also very effective--and perfectly legal. As long as companies aren't making any false claims (after all, these products aren't not appropriate for small businesses), the Federal Trade Commission has no beef. <snip> To be fair, many products bearing the "small business" moniker work just fine. But it's a bit of a stretch to claim that many of them are specifically tailored for that segment. “A phone line is a phone line," admits John Reagan, vice president of business marketing for AT&T. Some so-called small-business products deserve the distinction more than others. Take Microsoft 's...
  • BT launches free business tools | CNET News.com

    If you like the look of Microsoft Office Live for Small Business and Office Live Workspaces, then you might also like this from BT. It looks even more like understanding how to build a business on the back of Windows SharePoint Services is going to be vital in the small business space! BT launches free business tools U.K. telecom company offers BT Business Builder, which bundles free management applications for small businesses. By David Meyer Special to CNET News.com Published: September 11, 2007, 8:34 AM PDT U.K. telecom company BT Group has added a set of business-management tools to its portfolio of free hosted applications for small businesses. BT Business Builder incorporates bookkeeping, invoicing, sales, planning, payroll, human resources, and health and safety tools, together with a news-alert service covering new business legislation. <snipped - go to site to see more >BT, which is gradually shifting its image from telecommunications incumbent to global IT services giant , has already launched several hosted services for small businesses this year. BT Tradespace, launched in April, is a free social-networking and marketing facility designed to let small business set up an online presence easily via a series of templates. BT Workspace, launched in January, is a Microsoft SharePoint-based collaboration tool. BT launches free business tools | CNET News.com Other related items include http://blog.echosign.com/2007/07/btmicrosoft-all.html and http://ukbroadbandfinder.blogspot.com/2007/10/bt-tradespace-new-features.html thanks David Technorati Tags: BT , WSS , SharePoint , Workspaces
  • The UK SBS Back to Basics Tour

    This will be the 1st one of these tours that I have not attended for four years. Sad times, however that doesn't mean that Mark, Sven and everyone else will not do an amazing job (in fact, to suggest otherwise would be incredibly arrogant of me). So come and see how they can help you sell more and solve more problems over the next 9 months before the end of "FY08" inside Microsoft. "FY09" is of course when SBS Cougar is due to ship, but more on that later on in "FY08"!!! SBS 'Back to Basics' New to selling Microsoft Small Business Server? Or looking for interesting ways to approach selling a Small Business Server solution to your customers? Our 'Back to Basics' seminars cover common configurations, building servers with SBS, and looking at Windows SharePoint Server as a great solution-based approach to SBS for your customers. Small Business Server OEM Pre-Installation Kit: 9am, 30 October Common Configurations with Small Business Server: 4pm, 30 October Windows SharePoint: 9am, 31 October Small Business Server OEM Pre-Installation Kit: 9am, 6 November Common Configurations with Small Business Server: 4pm, 6 November Windows Sharepoint: 9am, 7 November ttfn David Technorati Tags: SBS 2003 R2 , Training , Windows SharePoint Services
  • Microsoft unveils more online services and additional features for Office Live

    You may well have missed this on Microsoft Press Pass, but I think all partners should read this and work out if there is even more opportunity for them. It was introduced under a title that might not have caught your attention: Microsoft Charts Its Software Services Strategy and Road Map for Businesses Company introduces “Online” services and Microsoft Office Live Workspace, solutions that combine client, server and services offerings to deliver connected computing options for people and businesses. REDMOND, Wash. — Sept. 30, 2007 — Microsoft Corp. today laid out the next phase in its strategy for online services, offering a road map for new offerings that synthesize client, server and services software for people and businesses. These offerings will combine elements of client-based programs with software that runs large servers and new services delivered over the Internet. The offerings announced expand Microsoft’s existing portfolio of software plus service solutions — solutions that weave together the best of software and Internet services to provide a new generation of rich, seamless experiences that are personalized, integrated and available online anywhere. This approach gives individuals and organizations greater freedom of choice in how they interact with the people, information and activities they value most. Microsoft plans to deliver a wide variety of new solutions during the coming months under two key families of service offerings: “Live” and “Online.” “Live” services from Microsoft are designed primarily for individuals, business end-users and virtual work groups. Live offerings span entertainment, communication and productivity. These services emphasize ease of use, simplicity of access and flexibility, and are ideally suited for situations where people either don’t have access to professional technical expertise or don’t require high levels of system management. “Online” services are for organizations with more advanced IT needs where power and flexibility are critical. Online services from Microsoft...
  • SBS rebates for partners - get up to $225 back per installation - and don't complain that we only do these in the USA - this is available in many countries, including the UK too

    I just know when a rebate offer goes up on the Microsoft web site that I will get an e-mail asking if it will be available in the UK. For this one the answer is most definitely YES. To prove that it is not a waste of time, I need you to USE the offer, i.e. sell SBS and claim back you money, CALs or D-Link wireless router. Below are the details from the UK web site, but if you go to http://www.sbsoffers.com you will be able to select your country. Since this is a limited time offer, the more you sell now, the more you make - you can make up to 50 claims under this offer!! Take advantage of these offers when you provide on-site, deployment services for Windows ® Small Business Server 2003 R2! Don’t miss this opportunity! From September 1, 2007 to December 31, 2007, the on-site services you may already provide to customers to deploy Microsoft ® Windows ® Small Business Server 2003 R2 could make you eligible to receive some great rewards. Provide on-site deployment services to your customer between September 1, 2007 and December 31, 2007. Submit your valid Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2 Certificate of Authenticity or Volume License Number and then upload, fax or mail your deployment services invoice Choose which offer you would like to receive! Server Rebate Offer - UK rebate site ttfn David Technorati Tags: If you only read one post today , SBS 2003 R2 , Rebate , SBSC , Partners , Microsoft
  • SBSC and small business partners get a chance to find out more about the market they sell into and Microsoft technology that is here and coming

    Want to talk to Microsoft and hear where we see the market, opportunities and key technologies? Then get to one of these (there are even more dates on the web site) :-) We are taking to the road to see you, our partners! Jump in the driver's seat and join us to find out how we plan to get your business motoring. A top Microsoft technology and business team will map out the latest developments in the server and desktop markets and take you on the journey from market opportunity to technical 'how to' demonstrations. We'll get under the hood of Windows Vista and the 2007 Microsoft Office system, along with the Office Ready PC, giving you detailed insights to get your business moving. And of course, we'll be outlining the route ahead for the new Windows Server 2008, with its built-in web and virtualisation technologies for increasing the reliability and flexibility of your customers' server infrastructure. Additionally we will be running exclusive SBSC pre-sessions at four of the locations so be sure to make one of these events by signing up using the links below: 1. Wednesday 10 th October – Cardinal Place, London 2. Thursday 11 th October – TVP, Reading 3. Wednesday 17 th October – Park Plaza, Nottingham 4. Tuesday 23 rd October – The Lighthouse, Glasgow And, importantly, we'll have the chance to meet. We want to know what you think, how you see the industry and the challenges you face. It's only with the direct feedback from you, our partners, that we can be sure we are on the right road. So, please join the whole team: technical, sales, marketing and business development, over beer and pizza to chat through the journey! Yours sincerely, Jennifer Brinton SBSC Programme Manager Microsoft ttfn David Technorati Tags: SBSC , System Builder , Vista , Office 2007 , Windows Server
  • 1st SBS webcast from series of 3 - SBS & the OEM Pre-installation Kit (OPK) by Sven

    I should have posted this information a few days ago, but I am making up for it now. Anyway, Sven's presentation can be found at http://uksbsguy.com/files/folders/events/entry4621.aspx and he has also gracefully provided a number of scripts to make the install even simpler which can be found at http://uksbsguy.com/files/folders/events/entry4622.aspx . Enjoy David Technorati Tags: SBS 2003 R2 , OPK
  • Windows Live Hotmail will soon bring you more of your requests, better performance, huge amounts of storage, de-dupe of contacts, message forwarding, Out of Office and much more

    You can tell from the title the favourite things I have found testing the latest version of Hotmail - well it is now public - we start rolling these features and more out over the Hotmail clusters. For more information look at the Ellie Powers-Boyle blog post Your mail is here, come and get it!: August: Hotmail will soon bring you more of your requests, better.performance . Obviously if you are a Office Live customer then you will also see these changes coming to you. For the international of us, I have called "Vacation Replies" Out of Office - you know what I mean then :-) 13 August August: Hotmail will soon bring you more of your requests, better performance We went out of beta in May, and we’re already releasing something new. Today, these new features will begin to roll our gradually to all our customers over the next few weeks, so if you don’t immediately see them, be patient, they’re coming! It’s a fun time to be working on Hotmail. We already did a ton of work to get the basics ready to get out of beta, so now we’ve been able to add some more of the extras that our more advanced users have been asking for. We’re continuing to collect feedback and using it to guide which areas of the product to improve next. Thanks to all of you who were beta testers, have clicked the “feedback” link in Hotmail, or leave constructive comments on the blog. We’re listening! Performance : We’ve been hearing you loud and clear across the world: speed is one of the most important aspects of a web-based email service. We’ve spent more time in this release identifying what parts of the product are slowest and fixing those. We hope that you notice an improvement when this update is released to your account, and we’ll continue our work on performance in future releases. Quality of Service : Our last release went quite smoothly, and we’ve been continuing to monitor the live site to make sure that we’re providing e-mail that is reliable – you always want to be able to get to your mail, and we hear you! More storage! Just when...
  • SBS Technet Chat Transcript published

    Hi folks, this is a really simple one - I had the pleasure of answering some questions at a TechNet chat a few weeks back - that chat has now had a polished transcript published on the web at http://www.microsoft.com/technet/community/chats/trans/sbs/07_0713_tn_sbs.mspx . thanks David Technorati Tags: SBS , SBS 2003 , SBS 2003 R2 , Technet , Chat
  • Microsoft, web services, new business models and small business

    In the IT market the term "change is the only constant" has been around for years (well, certainly since I left ICL where change was not constant, but that was due to the contract that dictated that everything did not change, so fell behind). Note, this post is purely the ramblings from my mind, not a statement from Microsoft in an Official or Unofficial capacity We've seen big iron, then smaller systems, the rise of SMP, the reduction in IT hardware and software costs for solutions, the rise of Microsoft servers, client server, 3-tier, clustered computing, multi-core and now internet enabled computing. There is much more, of course, to come, but how we deliver IT to customers has changed too. Of course, this is all generalised and some people have always been at one end or the other, but general acceptance is always shifting - remember the ASP business model of the late 90's - dead, yet here it is again with Software as / plus service. The pricing of some services even appears to be £0, yet you pay by clicking on adverts or by others buying adverts for you to see. Business Models Google and salesforce.com have once again shown that non-distributed computing means that a central failure grinds everything to a halt, just as Terminal based computing did before SAS was being considered. While you can architect to reduce these impacts, when they happen, hundreds to millions of people are impacted and if that is your business, it can be fatal. Once upon a time it was building PCs, then custom PCs, then servers, then core infrastructure, now ICT. However this is all the technical "stuff". We now deliver solutions more than just boxes (I know some always did) and the need to move beyond core infrastructure is a business necessity if you have not already moved this way. Excitement about a new "gizmo" (OS, application, gadget etc) is now tempered with "So what can it do to improve my business and is it worth it." One of the conversations I have had repeatedly with partners over...
  • Why should a small business use Office 2007

    Once again I thought I would put pen to e-paper on the top reasons I give people to move to Office 2007. I don't think there are many businesses out there that use a PC and don't use some form of office productivity suite and while most use Microsoft Office XX (where XX could be 97, 2000, XP or 2003), some use other products that in my opinion just don't compare for a business that wants to look great and work efficiently. With Office offering a massive choice of products and features, these are the headlines I use when talking to people. For those with a version of Microsoft Office, but not 2007 More Professional and Impressive documents and materials Use Microsoft Publisher 2007 to build sales and marketing materials that look agency made, but are actually in-house work The updated Microsoft Word 2007 has many features to ensure your documents have a professional, consistent look and feel throughout the whole document conforming to your brand goals (no matter how big or small they might be). The readability tests will also share with you how easy it is for someone to understand the document. Writing can be so unengaging, yet pictures are often very time consuming to get right. Using the new text features, features such as subtle shading or reflections or glowing words are a click away and can make text dazzle. For the words that can be better communicated in a picture the impressive Smart Art feature can take a simple list and turn it into a process diagram, or an organisation chart and all with any of the new professional style schemes to be sure to enhance the impact. Most people can recognise an "old" Excel charts - the colours are bland and the charts often quite flat. For this very reason the charts in Office 2007 have been given a significant facelift to ensure they look professional, while still conveying the information they are supposed to. While sending an Office document to someone is very common, sometimes you want to be able to send something they can't edit, such as a price...
  • Why should a business get Windows Small Business Server 2003 (SBS) to help their business

    I have been asked this many times and had promised to put these things down on paper (well e-paper), so now I am. This is my thoughts on why someone should buy SBS and also how I would sell it if I was selling it. Obviously there is much more that can be said and tailoring a solution to a customers needs is vital, but if presenting at an event or describing it on the radio, this is what I would say. Windows Small Business Server 2003 (SBS) is priced lower than other Microsoft servers to enable a small business to get the benefits of servers without any functionality compromise. We have even enhanced the product to put MORE in there than a standard Windows Server. To enable this price benefit Microsoft has put some limits (see below) on how SBS can be used which basically stops big businesses from using it, however you can cash in your investment in SBS and buy an Enterprise server should you ever need to and use the "cashed" in value to make the Enterprise server easier to afford too. Having said all that, the functionality limits rarely impact a small or smaller mid-market business and some of them are very technical. The Limits Only 1 SBS server in your business, but you can add as many other Windows Servers to your SBS network 75 or less licenses - a license can be a user or a device, but they cost the same so in 98% of cases user licenses would be the best Technical restrictions - SBS must be the "root" of the domain (rarely a problem in small businesses) and there can be "no server trusts" (again rarely a problem in small businesses) If you don't already have a server Share your files, printers, internet connection, fax and more without limits, while choosing who can read and modify information and who can't see it at all Enable strong security on PCs and Notebooks with a common password for each person on all machines, security updates automatically delivered all machines and all internet access protected by a server firewall Professional e-mail addresses for everyone in...
  • How to find and use an Accounting template to use with Office Excel 2007 and then change it from US to UK currency, change the formatting of dates and drag lists (or Excel Tips and Tricks 1) - all in a Video presented with Silverlight

    The Video I have delivered a number of Vista and Office demos over my time, so I decided to record a number of them for others to borrow, use, learn from or anything else they choose. This video covers the following subjects in enough detail for people to hopefully understand what they need to know on how to use these features in Excel 2007 and apply them to all of the Office 2007 applications: Find a template and use it - I use an accounting template as it is based on Office 2003 and US based Change the currency cells from dollars to pounds using find and replace for formatting Change the date formatting from US to UK Dragging a list across a range of cells to give column a different month To see the Excel 2007 Video played using Silverlight (just try it) click here *. If you want to download it as a WMV file then head over to the new bCentral - the UK Small Business Center on MS.com - It is on this page as an Excel Accounting sample: * it will take a few moments to open if you have Silverlight installed and require you to download Silverlight if you don't, but it is a 1MB download How I made it I simply ran through part of my normal demo talking as I went. When presenting to an audience it is easy to correct anything you do without anyone caring, however I tried to fix up the videos so this was not a problem. This has one drawback which is that the sound is not that good (one of those things I want to fix, but have not yet got round to) due to editing & cutting of the videos. I find it really hard to talk and move the mouse to the right place at the same time without a fluff in either my words or my mouse movements. Having captured the video is was simple to turn them into "Silverlight" Videos that were hosted on the Silverlight Streaming site for your pleasure - if you like them I can do more. Feel free to re-record the audio and play for your customers of make as a download for them. I have cut 10 videos to date and will release them over the next 2 weeks. The videos cover: For Vista - How to...
  • bCentral Moved - now the Microsoft Small Business Centre AND a new blog too

    I blogged about this a week or so ago, but the new site is now up and running and looks pretty fabulous. Click the Image to get to the new site. You can see that it is split into two sections, for those starting a business and those growing a business. Have an explore to find out what is there that you or your customers can use. Remember that bCentral was able to draw over 1/4 million UNIQUE visitors in a month, so your customers might well be on the list. The new blog can be found at http://blogs.technet.com/smallbusiness/default.aspx - it already has some excellent entries which I will be referring to soon. ttfn David Technorati Tags: bCentral , Microsoft , Small Business
  • How to copy files to a DVD / CD, Use the recycle bin, Use previous versions for files and Use the built in Vista backup tools - all in a Video presented with Silverlight

    The Video I have delivered a number of Vista and Office demos over my time, so I decided to record a number of them for others to borrow, use, learn from or anything else they choose. This video covers the following subjects in enough detail for people to hopefully understand what they need to know on how to use these tools: Use of the recycle bin Use of shadow copies to undo changes to a document Use of the DVD writing tools to copy and update files on a DVD Use of the built in Vista Backup tools To see the Backup Video played using Silverlight (just try it) click here *. If you want to download it as a WMV file then head over to the new bCentral - the UK Small Business Center on MS.com - It should appear on this page soon. * it will take a few moments to open if you have Silverlight installed and require you to download Silverlight if you don't, but it is a 1MB download How I made it I simply ran through part of my normal demo talking as I went. When presenting to an audience it is easy to correct anything you do without anyone caring, however I tried to fix up the videos so this was not a problem. This has one drawback which is that the sound is not that good (one of those things I want to fix, but have not yet got round to) due to editing & cutting of the videos. I find it really hard to talk and move the mouse to the right place at the same time without a fluff in either my words or my mouse movements. Having captured the video is was simple to turn them into "Silverlight" Videos that were hosted on the Silverlight Streaming site for your pleasure - if you like them I can do more. Feel free to re-record the audio and play for your customers of make as a download for them. I have cut 10 videos to date and will release them over the next 2 weeks. The videos cover: For Vista - How to copy files to a DVD / CD, Use the recycle bin, Use previous versions for files and Use the built in Vista backup to check for Updates in Windows Vista use the new Security features in Vista and Internet Explorer to...
  • How to add a trade-in line item (i.e. give cash back to discount a deal) to BCM 2007

    Someone asked me how to do this and I discovered that you can't have a negative discount percentage, negative quantity or negative price. So this makes it impossible to do... well, no, but it is not quite as easy as we would like. To make it work you need to create a Product and Service csv file to import to make it work. Here are the step by step instructions on installing it and using it. Installing the trade-in items Go to the BCM menu and select the Product and Services menu item Press the import button at the bottom of the dialog to get the screen shown on the left Create a csv file on your desktop called tradein.csv (start / run "notepad %homepath%\tradein.csv") Copy and paste the text below into the text file and save Trade In (10000), Trade in, -10000 Trade In (1000), Trade in, -1000 Trade In (100), Trade in, -100 Trade In (10), Trade in, -10 Trade In (1), Trade in, -1 browse the csv file on your desktop and press import Job done Using the trade-in items in an opportunity Now we have these line items, all you do is select them in an opportunity and use % discounts to make them fit. For example, if you wanted to give £2,000 discount, simply add the trade in (1000) qty 2 to the opportunity. You can add a higher number and then discount down, so for example if you want to add a trade in of £39,000 then you would discount by 2.5% and have a qty of 4 for trade in (10000) - see the picture on the left. Hopefully this little kludge will enable you to do trade-ins. ttfn David Technorati Tags: BCM , Business Contact Manager , Office 2007 , Trade Ins , Discounts , How to
  • Worldwide Partner Conference - WPC in Denver - what I know so far - Dynamics CRM Live

    Microsoft Announces Product Offerings and Customer Early Access Program for Microsoft Dynamics Live CRM - This could be huge - $44 per calendar month per user for Professional CRM and $59 for Enterprise edition (Professional Edition plus offline support)!!! Then, when you thought it was not so good for partners, look at the models: With the new Live service, partners in the Microsoft Dynamics CRM ecosystem will have new opportunities to deliver value to their customers and to drive revenue for their businesses by developing and deploying solutions across the three deployment options — Live, on-premise and partner-hosted models . For revenue in the new Live model, partners will be compensated on a recurring basis, not a one-time basis; each year they will receive 10 percent of the yearly Software as a Service (SaaS) subscription revenue for each customer for whom they are the partner of record. During 2008, a special incentive will allow partners to receive 15 percent of the SaaS subscription revenue for that year Steve from BMS noted the following: Microsoft WPC 2007 notes at BMS Blog: SBS Consulting in the UK Dynamics CRM Live launched Live Demo by Brad Wilson - General Manager for CRM Ability to download and completely remodel the CRM environment via partner provided XML templates Direct competitor for salesforce.com etc. Early adopter program Only available through partners Focus on making revenue from consultation ttfn David Technorati Tags: WPC , Partner Conference , Dynamics , CRM , CRM Live , Live
  • Worldwide Partner Conference - WPC in Denver - Small Business Symposium and more

    I'm not there, so can't tell you what they said, but I can point to others who have and point you to their blogs: WWPC PreDay Recap MAPS Training Requirement for MAPS WWPC Cougar WWPC Small Business Symposium WPC Small Biz Symposium Kicks Booty At the Small Business Symposium http://www.iqubed.biz/blog/2007/07/04/countdown-to-microsoft-wwpc-07/ ttfn David Technorati Tags: SBSC , WPC , Partner Conference
  • WPC Partner Conference in Denver - what is on and how to follow it even if you can't be there

    The Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference is an amazing opportunity to understand what Microsoft is planning on doing for its partners over the next 12 months, what changes will be happening to our products, look Microsoft in the eye and ask your question and to build relationships with other partners and people inside Microsoft to benefit your business. Some of the speakers include UK Small Business partners, such as Susanne Dansey , Gareth Brown and Andy Trish . They represent two areas of the community and their own companies, Westcoast a Microsoft distributor aiming at the small business end of the partner market and thriving, now Gold Certified SBSC partners who two years ago were not on Microsoft's radar and have made being a SBSC partner a real benefit. In terms of what is on that is just for small business partners we had the Symposium yesterday. As to what was expected, here is the small business blog http://blogs.msdn.com/mssmallbiz/archive/2007/07/03/3677168.aspx Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference: We know many of you will also be participating in the Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC) beginning Tuesday, July 10. There are several special activities planned especially for small business partners that you will want to add to your Conference schedule: · Network with your peers before you arrive by joining the Small Business Discussion Group . This group is hosted on WPC Connect and is a great way for you to stay current, share ideas, and discuss what you have seen and heard at the conference. · Also check out the Small Business Specialist Community Blog on WPC Connect to get an early glimpse of what to expect at both the Small Business Symposium and the Worldwide Partner Conference. Visit the Small Business Partner "Yellow" Lounge . This lounge is a gathering place for connecting with people who care about small business as much as you do. The Lounge is located across from Lobby F, near the 14th Street entrance to the Convention Center. C ome chat with Microsoft about small business technologies...
  • David Overton moving on to pastures new

    With a tear in my eye the time has come for me to move my stick hut somewhere new. I have loved working in and with the small business community and with a set of awesome partners who can complain and nag, but normally with good cause and that are more willing to say thank-you and "good job" when the time is right. To you all I take my hat off for making me feel so welcome. As a legacy we now have SBSC up and running, partner groups that support themselves, a voice into Microsoft from the smaller end of the partner community and a better understanding of the motivations of both Microsoft and our partners. We also have a new level of engagement with customers. I wish I could take credit for all of this, but I am just a figurehead for a great team of people inside Microsoft. A nice chap called Mark in the OEM team will be helping to drive Cougar knowledge through the community when the time comes (no, this is not the time yet, trust me), SBSC has been supported by Jen as many of you would have seen from the e-mails and SBS has a product manager who cares in the form of Sonal. Finally campaigns like Mr Busy prove that while we still have some implementation details to improve on, the ideas are getting better and better and the team responsible for these will continue to push forward on this front. They say you can take the boy out of the small business, but not small business out of the boy and this will be true for me - the blog will continue and I will still try to be a voice of reason and rant as I feel appropriate and pass on comments to the right people internally within Microsoft, just realise that I have less time to do this now. This points to the fact that I will still be with Microsoft. My next challenge is to help those ISVs (Independent Software Vendors) who wish it to move further along a path with Microsoft to do so, whether they already work with us today or not. This should be a fun challenge - viewing all of the Microsoft world as a platform rather than a solution, but this is something I have...
  • New Microsoft UK Small Business Blog and bye bye bCentral

    Well, we are in a new financial year and the small business team has undergone several changes. While internally things are being shaken around a bit (as every year - there should be more news soon on this), the web site bCentral is being moved and there is a new pretty cool blog to go visit. Much more business than my blog today. The new website should be up in a day or two and the blog is http://blogs.technet.com/smallbusiness/ . I will be contributing to it every so often, so expect some more here. ttfn David Technorati Tags: if you only read one post today , bCentral , Small Business
  • Vlad Mazek - "What is service management" and "how to avoid being hit by a truck when it is most inconvenient"

    I love Vlad's straight talking. If you get a chance read the whole of the blog entry Vlad Mazek - Vladville Blog » Blog Archive » Windows Server 2003 SP2 EEULA & CYA because as far as I am concerned he is preaching to the converted. I will stand by my view that Service Packs are tested as much as possible, but you need to do your own validation (see Who should test software and service packs - I think vendors,customers and partners - others thi ) to ensure that your application vendor is also happy to support their products on that service pack. If you only have MS products, check the release notes AND SUPPORT.MICROSOFT.COM as both may well have important information. I've extracted part of Vlads process to avoid a bloody head - read his post for more as people like Susan Bradley wishes she had :-) However, a part of me wonders just how heavy the rock was. You know, the one that he was under since Microsoft started releasing service packs. As painful as the above is to read, and as painful as this process has been for him, this outlines the fundamental lack of respect for change management we have in the IT industry. First , where is the full backup of the server that this was done on. At the very least this would have allowed him to take the server back to the last known good configuration. Second , where is the test system on which he checked Act 6.0 for compatibility? Third , never change more than one thing. If you installed the Service Pack and it broke things, do not proceed to install drivers (that likely have not been tested with the said service pack) and do more exotic changes. Fourth , test, test, test, test. Forget about the stuff you should have done before you patched, too late to setup a test vm, too late to do a full backup, too late to check the app vendor for advisories related to the patch, too late. You’re patched, there is a whole new world on your network. Isn’t the first thing to check all the workstations and rerun MBSA, performance testing, reset the performance counter on both...

(c)David Overton 2006-13