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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  • 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...
  • Worldwide Partner Conference - WPC in Denver - what I know so far - Office Live and Windows Live as a platform for partners to build on

    Office Live is already a great success, but today Microsoft announced even more to make it a business for partners to make success for them and their customers. We've released information about partners, solutions and using Windows Live, sample sites and more information on how to make it a business success. Have a look at Microsoft Office Live Launches Partner Program, Helps Partners Reach Small Businesses for more information. Add to this the extra opportunities that Windows Live also brings and the new tools to build on there too ( http://partner.live.com/windowslive/ ) and you really start to get something amazing. The press release Microsoft Office Live Launches Partner Program, Helps Partners Reach Small Businesses includes a reference from Solution Canvas: Solution Canvas is a Glasgow, Scotland-based Microsoft Gold Certified Partner that uses the Microsoft Office Live platform to host justia, a powerful practice management system for small legal firms. justia offers a cost-effective solution that provides...
  • 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...
  • Technet Answers on licensing Office 2007 for Terminal Server and Disaster Recovery licensing

    I was reading the latest Technet newsletter and saw this and thought I would pass on these two items: 2. How do I license Microsoft Office so my users can access it over Terminal Service? Microsoft has produced a Word document (126Kb) that discusses the options available to customers who would like to configure access to Office in this way. 3. How does Microsoft license its products for use in a disaster recovery situation? View the guide to "Cold" Server Back-Up for Disaster Recovery" . ttfn David Technorati Tags: Licensing , DR , Disaster Recovery , Office 2007 , Terminal Services
  • How to customize Business Contact Manager 2007 forms in Outlook 2007

    I found this on the Office Website when someone asked me about form customisation for BCM. I thought I would share it. Demo: Customize Business Contact Manager forms You can customize Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 with Business Contact Manager forms by adding fields and list items (drop-down lists) that are unique to your business. You can customize the following types of forms: Account Business Contact Opportunity Business Project You can customize drop-down lists by clicking Edit this list and then adding your item to the list. Watch this short demo to see how to customize a Business Contact Manager for Outlook form. How to do it (text version) Customize your Business Contact Manager forms through user-defined fields Customize drop-down lists on Business Contact Manager forms Demo: Customize Business Contact Manager forms - Outlook - Microsoft Office Online ttfn David Technorati Tags: Business Contact Manager , BCM , Customise , Customize
  • Spreadsheets and documents based on standards - OpenXML and ODF, ODF and Excel or all 3

    I have been using and referencing standards for a long time. They are great. C# is an ECMA standard for example as are parts of .Net which is how project Mono has managed to come great strides in delivering part of the .Net experience on non-Microsoft platforms. Also my 1st job out after University was writing document converters. So there are two things here - one, what is wrong with more than 1 standard - we have several for networks, several for character sets. Often one standard will work where another will not. Nearly always one standard is driven by an interested party. Open Office is very keen to see greater adoption of ODF. Microsoft is very keen to seen greater adoption of OpenXML. OpenXML is already a European standard (ECMA) and one of the nice things about that is the stability you are offered if you are developing against it. There is no requirement to have Office to use this file format. OK, so we could say "lets not use the European standard and create a similar one, but not quite the same"...
  • Darren Strange of Office 2007 / 12 fame talks about Max Office document converters and the the role of beta software

    I saw this and thought those of you with Mac customers might find this useful if Office 2007 is around or potentially around in their businesses. Also of note is the fact that beta, trial and RTM seems to be very blurred today. Do you ever deploy beta code? I do, often in small environments with big warning labels, but I do do it. Following on from some of your less than exuberant feedback about the new Mac converters, I looked into it. To summarise, the Mac BU have released the beta 1 of the file format converters of Office for Mac. You can download the converter for Word documents here . More info is at the ever useful macmojo blog First thing to point out is that this is a BETA and also that it is a BETA 1. There is a bug-ette in that apparently it doesn't handle some reserved characters from non-english languages or some special Unicode characters such as ™. Any docs that have these characters seem to screw up or don't convert at all. Apparently the issues with Unicode was documented in the help with...
  • Microsoft Office Outlook Connector Beta (how to connect Office Live Basics or Windows Live Hotmail to Outlook)

    Don't you love the way the title of a product described what it is? While this product does what it says on the tin, it misses out the most important thing - what can you connect Outlook to. The answer is e-mail and contacts based on our Hotmail service, so this includes OfficeLive. If you sign up to one of the subscription OfficeLive services (i.e. you pay us to use it) then you get a connector which can do all this AND synchronise your calendar items too. Once in Outlook you can do all the searching, filing and manipulation you want to do. Today you can now download the beta of the next version of the Microsoft Office Outlook Connector. Download: Microsoft Office Outlook Connector (Beta) The Microsoft Office Outlook Connector is designed to let you access your Windows Live Hotmail account through Outlook 2003 or Outlook 2007. You will be able to download and install the Connector to sync up your email and contacts in Windows Live Hotmail for free. However, if you are a paid subscriber of MSN Premium, Office...
  • Go to MSN today to see a great Office 2007 advert - interact with the web page using a Word 2007 ribbon - today only 12th June

    This is a quick one - hope along to http://uk.msn.com and today you will be greeted with the Office 2007 ribbon bar. You can change the formatting of the picture or the MSN section at the top using the live preview function of Office 2007. This will be 24 hours only I am told, so about 14 3/4 hours left! Image changes as you hover over the formats - available in Office 2007 and now MSN UK for the day!! We also have style changes on the headers. ttfn David Technorati Tags: MSN , Office 2007
  • Whatever happened to FrontPage and what has it got to do with SharePoint Designer or Web Expression

    I seem to be being asked this a lot, so I thought I would pop up my simple answer: FrontPage has been both extended and then split into two products. We now have SharePoint Designer which is one child of FrontPage, but obviously ideally suited to modifying SharePoint (and OfficeLive) sites and then we have the “any type of web page editor” which is Expression Web. If you look at http://www.microsoft.com/products/expression/en/web_designer/fpwd_faq.mspx you will also see: How is Expression Web different from Microsoft Office FrontPage 2003? Expression Web builds on Microsoft Office FrontPage® 2003 technologies to provide an unprecedented level of support for creating standards-based Web sites. Valuable feedback from customers like you have helped us create a new product that fully supports Web standards such as Extensible Hypertext Markup Language (XHTML), cascading style sheets (CSS), and Extensible Markup Language (XML). If you are familiar with FrontPage, then you will find Expression Web easy to use. Expression...
  • Office XP, 2003, 2007 feature comparison for small businesses

    I saw this on the Small Business site in the US and thought it was an excellent tool as to what has changed between the versions of Office from XP through to Office 2007. Simply go to http://www.microsoft.com/smallbusiness/products/wowpc/CompareOffice.aspx and click out the tabs to get the details. Ttfn David Technorati Tags: Office System , Office 2007 , Office 2003 , Office XP , Comparison , Small Business
  • Getting data out of or into Office 2007 documents just got easier with the Open XML gets an SDK

    If you are still undecided in the Open XML debate, or decided but want tools to make it easier then hop over to James blog and have a look at Views on Windows Vista : Open XML gets an SDK : Yesterday Microsoft announced a SDK (Software Development Kit) for SDK which allows developers to create code which works well with the Open XML thanks to the libraries, samples and documentation provided by the SDK. You can download the SDK here . If you now think that having this as a standard is a good idea, please go to here to add your vote. ttfn David Technorati tags: open XML , Office 2007 , Office System
  • Do you want to ask Microsoft the hard questions on Vista and Office before you sell them to your customers - well now you can in June - Live!!

    Your Office and Vista questions answered We are offering UK partners the opportunity to talk directly to one of Microsoft Europe's leading technology specialists in a series of online Q&A sessions. These sessions will seek to answer the nitty gritty questions you need to answer to transition your customers over to Windows Vista and Microsoft Office 2007. Book your place now. Register for 4 June Register for 5 June Register for 6 June Register for 7 June Register for 8 June ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , Vista , Office , Partners
  • Clint Covington: Software design, Microsoft Office Access : Cool As Ice uses Office Live and Access 2007 with custom ribbon

    I saw this and thought you might like to see how one ISV has joined Office Live and an Access application. Web access and rich client applications. Nice!! Here is some information about the Access 2007 application that I’ve developed for Cool As Ice, which is a leading Norfolk-based supplier of air conditioning and refrigeration here in the UK. Cool As Ice wanted a bespoke customer contact system that they could use to hold data securely yet allow their workforce to use that data on their laptops, including adding and altering data, i.e. not just a read-only copy. Access 2007’s integration with Sharepoint meant it could provide the basis for a good solution. The application holds its data in a workspace that is part of my company’s Office Live site. The choice of Office Live to provide the SharePoint part of the solution means that their data is secure and that Cool As Ice do not need to get involved in organising that part of the solution, concentrating instead on the things they do best. Backups of data are...
  • If you want to get UK dialect words into the Microsoft dictionary then send the words asap (by 31st May)

    I have only just seen this in my inbox, but it looks worth doing!! Do you have a ‘benny’ if you can’t find ‘owt’ in your familiar local lingo when you are writing documents and letters? To celebrate the launch of the 2007 Office system and the richness of the British language, Microsoft has partnered with the British Library to develop a series of online dictionaries made up of local dialects...and we want you to contribute! How many people talk about ‘hoying’ a ball or even taking a ‘crib’ when they have a cup of tea? With an ever increasing mobile population, Microsoft and the British library and keen to preserve local identities and heritage. Jonathan Robinson, curator of English accents and dialects at The British Library says: “Britain has a rich heritage of different accents and dialects and, contrary to popular opinion, there is still a great deal of lexical diversity across the UK - where else would you find the words ‘cob’, ‘batch’, ‘bun’, ‘barm cake’, ‘stotty cake’, ‘scuffler’ and ‘bread cake’, all meaning...
  • Chris Parkes: Microsoft Office Word 2007 and OpenOffice.org 2.2.0 Mail Merge Comparison

    I know I need to wear my flame proof shorts for posting this, however, Chris has done an amazing post comparing the pain, process and time of doing a mail merge in Office 2007 and Open Office. He found that something that he could do without trouble in Word was not easy to understand and ONCE ALL SETUP, still took five times longer to then just process itself. When time is money, this pays for itself in Office 2007 (or 2003 or XP :-) ) All in all, the whole process took just under fifty minutes , five times longer than it did using Microsoft Office Word 2007 although this was considerably longer on my first few attempts as I struggled to locate the functionality in OOo and how to put the whole thing together. The conclusion... The time taken to complete essential tasks therefore is extremely important. If organisational end users were to be so unproductive then staffing overheads would considerably increase. Whereas Microsoft Word 2007 handled the process with the minimum of fuss and flexibility, using OOo actually...
  • OneNote Calendar at OneNote PowerToys to view your notes against the day you wrote them

    I saw this and knew it was an awesome tool! Josh Einstein, the developer of TEO 3.0, has created a nifty new application for OneNote. The OneNote Calendar gives you a calendar view of all of your notes, allowing you to view them by when they were created or modified. There is a preview pane that allows you to view your notes. More good news. It is free. Source: Josh Einstein’s OneNote Calendar at OneNote PowerToys
  • Want Microsoft to get you leads - this is how you do it

    One of the most commonly asked questions is "How do I get Microsoft to send me leads?" While we run campaigns that point people to the bCentral site and the find a small business IT advisor process some want more direct action. Well, using the Mr Busy campaign you can now get us to carry our a campaign on your behalf. Yes, that is right, we will carry out a campaign on your behalf to people you want to - either by e-mail (EM) or post (DM). The process is really simple - go here and read the instructions. For the Post Card campaign we know that using post cards effectively communicate with your customers and provide short and focused information. You can customise the postcard with your company details, your logo and a relevant web URL and phone number. We advise that the URL you supply has information about the IT healthcheck to increase the number of customers then contacting you. Your postcards will be sent directly to your customers in a neutral envelope within five business days of you submitting...
  • How to do mail merge letters and labels in Office 2007

    I got a mail on this today, so thought I had better drop a quick note. The Office 2007 web site has a great search system that got me an answer straight away that includes screen shots to make it real simple. (I searched on the site for mail merge and then picked Word 2007 from the product picker). Please note that you can also e-mail merge to result in a number of e-mails being sent (perhaps with a newsletter) and that if you use publisher then you can also do things like put in place web links that have a unique identifier so you can tell who clicked on them. The answers can be found at: http://office.microsoft.com/en-gb/word/HA100819761033.aspx?pid=CH100626281033 for the letters http://office.microsoft.com/en-gb/word/HA101091611033.aspx?pid=CH100626261033 for the labels ttfn David Technorati tags: mail merge , word 2007 , Office 2007
  • Installing Office 2003 and Office 2007 on the same system

    [updated 16:42 9th May 2007 with url for MS Support of this] [updated 9:45 22nd July 2007 with url to fix for install dialog coming up with word] I was recently asked in Office 2003 and Office 2007 can co-exist on the same system. The answer is yes, except for Outlook which as in previous versions get a little precious if this is attempted (it will not let you do this, btw). You can choose to have them both installed to the same drive or one to an external hard drive, it does not matter. The key option is when installing Office 2007 is to customise the options and select to NOT uninstall the previous versions. When you install both copies of Office to be installed on 1 machine that switching between Word 2003 and Word 2007 will result in an install dialog box coming up. See How to get rid of the installer / configuration dialog when running Office 2007 and Office 2003 on the same system - for Vista and other versions of Windows to fix this. For more support information, look at http://support.microsoft.com/default...
  • May security updates for Server DNS and Office 2003/2007 and IE7. Also Quicktime needs an update

    I did a quick scan and it seems that this month Office is the main target of updates, along with one critical one for Windows Server (for DNS RPC attack) and one for IE7. Worth a quick download and install :-) I also got this in the mail today: Apple QuickTime 7.x must be upgraded to 7.1.5 or higher. On the security updates: Microsoft is releasing the following new security bulletins for newly discovered vulnerabilities: Bulletin Number Maximum Severity Affected Products Impact MS07-023 Critical Microsoft Excel (all currently supported versions) Remote Code Execution MS07-024 Critical Microsoft Word 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004 (Mac) Remote Code Execution MS07-025 Critical Microsoft Office (all currently supported versions) Remote Code Execution MS07-026 Critical Microsoft Exchange (all current versions) Remote Code Execution MS07-027 Critical Internet Explorer - all current versions on all currently supported versions of Microsoft Windows Remote Code Execution MS07-028 Critical CAPICOM, BizTalk Server Remote Code Execution...
  • How to remove those spaces before, after and inbetween paragraphs in Word 2007 (Part of Office 2007)

    I got this mail on the blog today, so decided I would post a solution: 2007 Vista Student and Office Edition does not allow me to create one line spacing in Address Headings but okay within the body of the letter, is this a glitch. I have never experienced this in my former Word Programs. In the dialog box it does specify single spacing. Any advice would be appreciated I have created a simple document and you might notice that there is a big gap between each sentence. This is caused by both line spacing and space before or after the paragraphs. I will walk you through the process I went through to make things look less spaced out. To do all of this I will be using just one icon on the ribbon bar - the one circled below If I hover over this, you can see it is for line spacing. The 1st thing I did was highlight my text and try setting the line spacing to 1.0 - you can see the result is that the text is slightly closer together. Next I clicked the "Remove Space Before Paragraph" option and you will notice...
  • What is the difference between an Outlook contact and a Business Contact Manager (BCM in Office 2007) contact

    I was asked this by someone today and thought I would show you the differences BCM Contact General Page followed by the Outlook Contact General Page: There are lots of differences, but the big ones are: Information Source - where did it come from, how did you get this contact and which account started it. Classification - Is this a lead and is the person still "active". Also who is managing this person, what their credit rating is and whether there is a payment issue BCM Details Page followed by the Outlook Details Page: A host of job related information and then a section for personal information about the person, plus a huge comments section. There is also the communication preferences piece and the ability to suppress mailings (do not call, do not e-mail, do not fax, do not mail (write to on paper)). Finally the BCM (only) History Page: Some of this information can be automatically generated, so for example, the e-mail items can be auto generated whenever you mail, or they mail you. ttfn David Technorati...
  • Which 2007 Office Application Are You?

    I did this " Which 2007 Office Application Are You? " and apparently I am Excel You are Excel 2007! People trust you to find the right answer. They call you "the wizard" and are in awe of your PivotTable. When you say you love functions, it's understood that you're referring to spreadsheets, not social events. You import and export with ease, always maintaining balance. Thanks to your mastery of numbers, people are constantly asking you for help with their own budgets. With the new Microsoft Office Excel 2007, you'll see how those people can get their own answers - better and faster. They will be amazed that they, too, can create a new chart with only five clicks. You may not have been known as a trendsetter, but your ability to use conditional formatting to "see" new trends was well worth any wait. You can analyze the impressive productivity and efficiency gains in Excel 2007 and prove that the benefits justify the costs. Your favorite new feature in Office 2007 is likely...
  • Speed issues with large OSTs & PSTs patch for Outlook 2007 Available

    I saw this over at the The Official SBS Blog and thought I had better tell everyone about it given the traffic on the web page. Once you apply this patch you might get an BCM (Business Contact Manager) error if you have installed it - to fix this, go look at My BCM Updates Post and grab the one about "Outlook 2007 with Business Contact Manager: Prevent error message about version mismatch when certain Office 2007 applications are launched". [Today's post comes to us courtesy of Mark Stanfill] There is a new patch available for Outlook 2007 that fixes performance issues with large PSTs/OSTs. We highly recommend applying this patch on all systems with Outlook 2007 installed. If you are preparing a new installation, this patch should be applied in addition to the steps outlined in http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;926505 . Direct Download: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=c262bcfd-1e09-49b6-9003-c4c47539df66&DisplayLang=en KB article: http://support...

(c)David Overton 2006-18