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.  

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  • 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
  • If you liked the Deep Zoom (aka Sea Dragon) tool, then you will be blown away by the preview of the Deep Zoom Composer

    I created my Star Wars Deep Zoom preview and really liked it, but then contacted the author of the site to see how I could add more pictures and control the layout &/or host it myself. Normally when I ask these sorts of questions I get a response about "later" and "out of beta", but instead I got pointed to these 3 articles and I have to say Wow!! You can see what someone can do with this technology at The Hard Rock Cafe - http://memorabilia.hardrock.com/ Download the Preview of the Deep Zoom Composer What is the Deep Zoom Composer? Deep Zoom Composer allows you to quickly import your own images, arrange and position them to your liking, and export the final output as either a Deep Zoom Image or Collection that can be fed into Silverlight's MutliScaleImage control. This means that you too can use your own images and display them using our Deep Zoom technology. Download the Deep Zoom Composer However, having done this I needed a simple user guide. At this point the blog Expression Blend...
  • Technical RollUp : March 2008 - Technical Rollup Mail - Platforms (Windows, virtualisation, Active Directory, Core, Debugging, Terminal Services, Vista SP1 changes / new / implementation guides)

    As always, from the Technical RollUp : March 2008 - Technical Rollup Mail - Platforms blog posting. I've removed all the KB article stuff and it is worth pointing out that towards the end of the list are all the docs associated with what has changed with Windows Vista SP1: Blogs and information Windows Virtualization Team Blog http://blogs.technet.com/virtualization/ The World Simplified is a Virtual World http://blogs.technet.com/virtualworld/ Ask the Directory Services Team http://blogs.technet.com/askds/ Ask the Performance Team http://blogs.technet.com/askperf/ Microsoft Enterprise Networking Team http://blogs.technet.com/networking/ Ask the Core Team http://blogs.technet.com/askcore/ Microsoft Advanced Windows Debugging and Troubleshooting http://blogs.msdn.com/ntdebugging/ Terminal Services Team Blog http://blogs.msdn.com/ts/ The Hot Blog http://blogs.technet.com/hot/ Downloads Windows Server Update Services 3.0 SP1 Windows Server Update Services 3.0 Service Pack 1 (WSUS 3.0 SP1) delivers updates to...
  • Announcing the Retirement of the Partner TDT and Release of New Product Demos Resource

    Chris Parkes sent a mail round internally telling us about MORE resources & demos etc available to partners. Chris has written about it on his blog (discovered this after I wrote this - here , there may be some comments on his worth reading, so double check!!) The Demo Showcase has been extended to include Deep Dive/Product virtual environments *which are available to all partners * Only Demo Showcase remains as the Gold/Cert benefit moving forwards... The following are now available for immediate download: 2007 Microsoft Office System 47 Hands-on Labs 25 demonstrations Microsoft Forefront and System Center Demonstration Toolkit Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager Microsoft System Center Operations Manager Intelligent Application Gateway Microsoft Forefront Security for Exchange Server Forefront Client Security Microsoft Business Intelligence Demo (Data warehousing, reporting and analysis, performance management) Microsoft Office PerformancePoint Server 2007 Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007...
  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 VPC Image

    I saw this and thought I would share for those who had not seen it - Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 VPC Image Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 VPC Image Get familiar with the upcoming Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 release: Preview Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 in a Virtual PC (VPC) image. Overview This Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 preview leverages Release Candidate (RC0) code in a Virtual PC image. The demo is designed as a one-computer setup with Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 server and Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 client for Microsoft Outlook. Note: Although the image can be utilised on a single PC or laptop computer, it is strongly suggested that the image be run using an external USB 2.0 hard drive for best performance. If you do not have an external drive, you can run the image locally on the host computer; however, you will experience a decrease in performance. Contents This VPC contains the following: Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 (RC0) Microsoft Dynamics CRM Laptop and Desktop Client Microsoft Dynamics CRM SDK (C:\CRM Tools\SDK...
  • Photos, photography, JPEG XR, Photosynth, the future of photography and Seadragons - why all the excitement?

    It's funny working in an industry where if you are not going at 50,000 miles an hour you are considered to be standing still. One area where Microsoft is speeding along is photography. In this post I will explore the announcements, the demos, short and long term products and then the future that lots of people are beginning to see. For me, the fact that people are already seeing such a future and its possibilities is very exciting (both the visions and the fact they are having them without drugs!! (humour)) Look at the recent events: Raw photo support in 2005 - Microsoft and Imaging Industry Leaders Unveil Support for Digital Photo HD (which some people thought was a JPEG killer.. tut tut) - HD Photo - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia JPEG XR - JPEG committee supports Photo HD as next gen JPEG TrustedReviews - Official Jpeg Successor Is Microsoft's HD Photo Now this is all very nice, but so what - a better format for bigger pictures, that could be a bit like FAT disks getting FAT32 format, but it is not...
  • 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
  • An update from Vijay on the SBSC PALs Quarterly Conference Call and further evidence that Microsoft might sometimes be slow to react to feedback, but it does react and the results are often good

    I saw this post of Vijays ( » SBSC PALs Quarterly Conference Call ) and thought it was worth highlighting some of it: Michael Risse, VP of the Small and Midmarket Business Group has issued an open letter to SBSC Partners about the issues with Solution Finder. Demo Showcase 2007 will be available to all SBSC Partners, shipping this December. I clarified that it will be the Virtual Server Images and not just the canned simulations and Andrea said it will be the full versions. The Managed Newsgroups are now 24 hour in the UK and other selected countries from last week. Special Edition Toolkit will ship in December provided you are a SBSC Partner before 30 November. You will get Vista anytime upgrade to Ultimate from Business, eval of Forefront for Sharepoint/Exchange, Demo Showcase 2007, Brand Tools, Viral Videos, Licensing Guidance, printable Small Business Guide. Customer Campaigns around the following areas (hopefully call to action will be go to a SBSC Partner but depends upon how Microsoft UK implements them...
  • Microsoft Windows security tools, Server 2008 readiness, step-by-step guides, virtualisation updates, synctoy beta, VHDs and LOTS on the new Terminal Services

    This is an extract from the TRM blog which can be found here http://blogs.technet.com/trm/ . I have removed the KB article list and some items which I don't think are relevant to small business / ISV partners, however the full info can be found on the blog page too. News Microsoft Security Assessment Tool 3.0 The Microsoft Security Assessment Tool (MSAT) is a risk-assessment application designed to provide information and recommendations about best practices for security within an information technology (IT) infrastructure. http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=7623431 Start your Microsoft Windows 2008 Readiness Right Here Focus on readiness for Windows Server 2008 now, and you can be the one who stands out when initiatives happen - and when promotion decisions are made. Let Microsoft Learning resources give you the head start you need to transition your skills and credentials to the latest Windows Server technologies - from free elearning clinics and free ebook downloads. http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=7623432...
  • A selection of WPF-based (Silverlight) applications

    I saw this blog entry and just had to share it - a number of Silverlight application (don't know how many will work with the updated Silverlight builds) - WPF Cornucopia - A selection of WPF-based applications . Below are some of my favourites. There are many more on the blog entry Some cool WPF and Silverlight applications that you can download or play with today. The deployment model has been added so that you know what you are getting into as far as installation goes. Lots are using ClickOnce .application files and .xbaps, so installation is trivial! My Web Pages Starter Kit New with Silverlight Demo (Web Application) New York Times Reader Next-generation online reading experience for the NY Times (MSI) Microsoft Calendar Printing Assistant Generate printed calendars from your Outlook schedule (MSI) Microsoft Expression Blend Designer tool for building WPF experiences (MSI) Microsoft Expression Design Illustration and graphic design tool (MSI) Microsoft Windows Live for TV 3D access to Messenger contacts...
  • Windows Client (Vista and XP) - Active X installer service, Volume Activation Tool, Diagnosing XP crashes, modifying the boot configuration parameters

    If you use volume licensing with Windows Vista then you need to be aware of the tools to manage them - it is not as simple as it used to be as you now need a management tool inside the business. VAMT answers this as does Desktop Management. Then we have some webcasts on slow networks, diagnosing crashes in Windows XP (although many of the techniques work for Vista too), backup and restore in Vista, using the ActiveX installer Service and Boot config parameters VAMT 1.0 (x86) The Volume Activation Management Tool enables IT professionals to automate and centrally manage the volume activation process using a Multiple Activation Key (MAK). VAMT v1.0 is only available as a US-EN (x86) release. Best Practices on Managing Windows Vista Desktops Get best practice guidance for managing Windows Vista desktop operations. Windows Vista Service Life-Cycle Management (WVSLM) provides concise guidance to help minimise the total cost of ownership of desktop infrastructure. Process guidance and document templates help make service...
  • How unified communications could be with Exchange 2007 and Office Communications Server (OCS)

    Unified Communications, VoIP, IM, e-mail, messaging, call redirecting, talking to your calendar - so hard to explain in words, so easy to watch in this short demo. A bit cheesy, but it works ttfn David Technorati Tags: Unified Communications , Exchange 2007 , Office Communications Server , VoIP
  • Slides from todays Webcast on Windows SharePoint Services on SBS (WSS v2 & WSS v3)

    Today I did my last Webcast on SBS. It was the 3rd of a 3 parter on SBS. Part 1 was about how to use the OPK, part 2 was on Configuring SBS. I will post links to part 1 & 2 later today, but thought I would get the last one out 1st. If you watched the Webcast you will know that explorer crashed on my machine stopping the demos with word and excel working, which was not desired, but I did load 2 beta patches onto my system yesterday, so now the diagnosis as to wether that was the problem begins. Anyway, if you want the slides set they can be found here . Some of the useful links from the deck are: WSS v2 Office 2003 web parts (the last ones) http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=38be67a5-2056-46a1-84b1-337ffb549c5c&displaylang=en Samples and information http://www.sharepointcustomization.com/wss/articles.htm Enable Office 2007 support http://uksbsguy.com/blogs/doverton/archive/2007/03/13/how-to-get-companyweb-windows-sharepoint-services-v2-to-work-with-office-2007.aspx Backup and restore...
  • 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...
  • How to use Office Outlook 2007 with any internet connection and how to access Outlook Web Access from any web browser - 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 Outlook via a web browser and via an internet connection: Outlook Web Access with recent browser (IE5 or above) Outlook Web Access basic or lite edition for low speed internet connections Configure Outlook to use RPC over HTTP To see the video played using Silverlight (just try it) click here *. I am hoping that in the near future that the WMV file will be available at new bCentral - the UK Small Business Center on MS.com. At the moment it is not available there, but a copy can be found here * 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...
  • How to use the new Security features in Vista and Internet Explorer to stop malware (spyware and viruses) from infecting your computer - 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 Windows Vista and understand how to be a little safer online: Phishing protection in Internet Explorer ActiveX blocking in Internet Explorer Windows Defender in Windows Vista To see the video played using Silverlight (just try it) click here *. I am hoping that in the near future that the WMV file will be available at new bCentral - the UK Small Business Center on MS.com. At the moment it is not available there, but a copy can be found here * 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...
  • 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...
  • 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...
  • System Center Essentials web casts

    To follow up on the SCE information - please note that once a webcast has run it is normally available for "on demand" viewing. Manage the IT Environment of Your Mid-Sized Business More Efficiently Discover Microsoft System Center Essentials 2007, the new unified IT management solution specifically designed for mid-sized businesses. In this webcast, we provide an overview of System Center Essentials 2007 and demonstrate how it enables IT professionals to manage their IT environments proactively by simplifying tasks and automating complex tasks from a single console. Learn how the built-in troubleshooting and asset inventory can help you save time and increase productivity while maximizing the availability of a secure IT environment. Presenter: Pete Zerger, Consulting Practice Partner, AKOS Technology Services http://msevents.microsoft.com/CUI/WebCastEventDetails.aspx?culture=en-US&EventID=1032336459&CountryCode=US Managing a Microsoft Infrastructure Meet availability and performance requirements...
  • How I created my popfly carousel

    If you go to the blog entry on Microsoft Surface you will be asked to install Microsoft Silverlight. When you do so you will see a carousel effect to show the 12 Surface pictures. As many of you know I am NOT a developer by any means, so I thought I would show you what I had to do to get to the finished product - it is not hard at all. 1st off I signed up for a Popfly account at http://www.popfly.com and was lucky enough to get an account very quickly. OK, so I dropped 3 blocks onto the screen - one to read the RSS fead of the Surface pictures, one to pull out the picture urls and one to display them. That was it (well I did drag those blue lines across too) Here is what I put in the RSS feed Here is what I put in the filter Here is what I put in the carousel initially (I changed it to a more complex piece of code later to change the screen resolution of the images it pulls down) that was it. That is why popfly is so simple to combine things together. ttfn David Technorati tags: popfly , mashup , silverlight
  • Trial Software Kit for Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2

    I was recently asked how to get a trial of SBS. You can't download one, but as a customer you can order one here. Note that if you go to the international pages you might have to scroll around a bit to find the right bit of information. If you are a partner and wish to give them to use them with your customers then you only need one copy as you can re-use the key we provide you and you can get it from the Partner Marketplace For customers: Trial Software Kit for Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2 North America – Order your CD package here. Other Locations – The SBS 2003 R2 Trial is not generally available outside North America. Please select your country from the SBS Worldwide page to determine whether the trial software is available in your location. For Partners: Partner MarketPlace - eg Market - Partners - Microsoft UK You searched for items of collateral related to the Small Business Server (SBS) group. To add items to your order, select a quantity from the drop down box. Description Type Audience Price...
  • Using Silverlight to tattoo my hand with SBSC - more demos, community and more

    I was watching the MIX Keynotes, which just blew me away with the news regarding speed of deployment, platform options, browser options, developer options, demos and just sooo much more. It is just worth going to http://visitmix.com and watching the keynotes - it will really blow your socks off. Using one of the demos from http://silverlight.net/samples/1.0/Ink-Tattoo-Studio/default.html I just tattoo'd my hand using a web based app - this is something I would expect from a client app. enjoy David
  • Job aids (things to help you do your job) with Microsoft Office 2007

    2007 Microsoft Office System Be productive while using the new versions of Microsoft Office desktop applications. · Microsoft Office Fluent User Interface Get Started · Microsoft Office Charts and SmartArt Get Started · Microsoft Office Styles Get Started · Microsoft Office Tasks Get Started · Microsoft Office Tasks Learn More Everyday Work Discover best practices for working with e-mail, organizing your time, and more. · Windows Vista and Microsoft Office Work Smarter Checklist · InfoPath 2007 Forms Get Started E-mail · E-Mail Basics Get Started · Outlook 2007 E-Mail Signatures Get Started · Outlook 2007 E-Mail Rules Get Started · Outlook 2007 Out of Office Assistant · Delegating Outlook 2007 Access Learn More · Outlook 2007 and SharePoint Server 2007 Integration Overview · Outlook 2007 and SharePoint Server 2007 Integration Get Started · RSS (Really Simple Syndication) Overview · Subscribing to Web Content with RSS Time and Task Management · Microsoft Office Tasks Get Started · Microsoft Office Tasks Learn More...
  • Help to make the Office 2007 document type a standard (Open XML) - click the link

    I love standards - they make life easier. TCP is one, ODF is one, SNA is one, ASCII and EBDIC are. Even PDF is one. It just makes life easier. In this connected world standards are a good thing and sometimes more than one standard is very good. Microsoft has offered the Open XML (Office 2007 document format) as a standard too. We can have it as a standard in a short time frame or a long time frame. I want you to sign the petition to help it happen in the short time frame. Even Novell are supporting this as they see it as just making their customers lives easier. Go here and sign the petition to help move things forward in the short time frame. If you want to see how developers could use the standard have a look at http://openxmldeveloper.org/posts.aspx . You might wonder why I am asking you to do this. Well I've read the text at the microsoft.com site on Open XML and I like the idea of this being a public standard that people can write to without having to pay for the right to do so and the knowledge that...
  • Do you want to trial Exchange Server 2007, perhaps talk to the server? If so, look at the Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 Hosted Trial

    I saw this over at Henrik's blog and throught it might be of interest to the SBSC community. I like this. While I discovered that demoing something like this using a free VoIP service was a bad idea, using OK quality phones delivers an amazing experience. Obviously we will not see Exchange 2007 embedded in SBS until Cougar ships, it can still be provided as a hosted service, on a 2nd machine or for a partner internally using the Action Pack copy that should ship next month (fingers crossed). For more information, pop over to Henrik's blog on the subject, including the link to the trial. Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 Hosted Trial Like it was the case right after Exchange 2003 RTM, you can also sign up for an Exchange 2007 tempoary account… “Welcome to the Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 Hosted Trial web site. You can create a temporary account to experience the features of Exchange Server 2007 which will stay active for 5 days. Your account will be pre-populated with sample messages, calendar appointments and a...

(c)David Overton 2006-18