Sunbelt W2Knews Electronic Newsletter
The secret of those "who always seem to know" - Over 500,000 Readers!
Mon, Jul 29, 2002 (Vol. 7, #52 - Issue #383)
.Net Release Candidate 1 - First Impressions
This issue of W2Knews contains:
- EDITORS CORNER
- OK, How Many WinXP's were sold?
- TECH BRIEFING
- Admin Console Feedback Wanted
- MS Will Fight Spam, But For $10 A Month...
- NT/2000 RELATED NEWS
- .Net Release Candidate 1 - First Impressions
- NT/2000 THIRD PARTY NEWS
- NSI Software Introduces Latest Double-Take 4.2
- Today's Security Tip - Evaluate Before You Patch
- Would Your Company Pass A Full GLBA Audit?
- Close Your Number #1 Security Hole ? Your Users' Passwords.
- W2Knews 'FAVE' LINKS
- This Week's Links We Like. Tips, Hints And Fun Stuff
- PRODUCT OF THE WEEK
- Universal Command Guide for Operating Systems
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OK, How Many WinXP's were sold?
Microsoft just announced this week that they have sold a whopping
46 million Windows XP licenses. Not too shabby. Of course they claim
that this is the fastest-selling Windows ever, but they include all
the OEM pre-installed licenses in that. So really, what's the big deal.
Still, the vast majority of this is consumer. WinXP in the enterprise
is very, very slow going. And for good reason. It's finicky with
the hardware it is running on. Remember the AMD Dual-CPU motherboard
we put together and that I'm writing this on? Well I've had a bunch
of bluescreens on it, caused by faulty drivers for the video card,
the sound board and now we have replaced the power supply in an
attempt to get rid of them. I'm back to saving my files early and
often. Sigh. I have threatened our tech guys that one more BSOD and
I'm going back to W2K. [grin]
And sure, OK, we know very well that it's all a matter of the Hardware
Compatibility List, and approved drivers, and tested configurations
but W2K never gave me this much hassle. My conclusion: only run WinXP
on hardware that is thoroughly tested or simply buy it preinstalled
on workstations whenever they need replacement. And for the office
environment, set the default for the W2K GUI, not the new one. The
learning curve for the new GUI is just not worth it in the business
(email me with feedback: [email protected])
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Admin Console Feedback Wanted
Most of you guys are using a multitude of admin tools. Many of these
have some sort of central admin console associated with them, which
is supposed to save you time. In many cases these consoles become
a pig, are burdensome and non-intuitive. You have an opportunity to
give us some feedback on how you'd like the central admin console of
iHateSpam to look like. We want to have this thing done in about 2-3
months. The general idea of what it will do is the following:
But let us know how you'd like to have this look. Our earlier survey
shows that an MMC snap-in would be preferred by the majority, but
everything is open. What management features would you like? Want
it in the form of a Windows GUI? Web? Both? Give us your thoughts,
and what has worked for you in the past (and still does). Thanks in
advance! Email me: [email protected]
- Allows you to propagate iHateSpam to various desktops.
- Allows you to propagate your own rules to desktops running iHateSpam.
- Provide statistics on your client installations of iHateSpam.
MS Will Fight Spam, But For $10 A Month...
The Seattle times came up with this novelty. MS may have figured out
a good way to filter out the junk e-mail clogging your systems, but it
will cost at least $10 a month to use the technology. Ouch.
MSN 8 will introduce a filtering system, the latest version of the
company's Internet service. It is expected in October. For the first
time, starting with version 8, Microsoft will offer the new features
of MSN only to subscribers, although it will continue to provide free
access to the basic MSN Internet portal. Full article here:
As an aside, iHateSpam is a one-time license fee, with normal 25%
maintenance per year and advanced junk mail filtering intelligence as
part and parcel of the product. No subscription needed.
NT/2000 RELATED NEWS
.Net Release Candidate 1 - First Impressions
Well, RC1 is here. The Keywords is CPP or Customer Preview Program.
(The same thing has existed for 2000 and XP). Jim Allchin called
the thing rock solid and so it is no longer called beta. Well, let's
try to break it then! Anyone wanting to guess the amount of bugs
still in there? ;-).
Allchin did not commit to a specific ship date. Among the interesting
features in the new .NET Server (which is widely anticipated to ship
by year's end): 8-node clustering, incremental improvements in Active
Directory. These include a domain re-name capability, a schema redefine functionality, advances in replication, AD cross-forest trust
capabilities, an Internet Connection firewall, IIS 6 and ASP.NET.
Additionally, Allchin said, corporate customers can expect Windows
.NET Server to maintain user identities across servers regardless
of the authentication method. Again, no specifics such as pricing
and exact ship date were available.
Microsoft announced that they decide to break out all the real-time
collaboration and communications stuff like digital meetings,
instant messaging, group collaboration, information-agent tech
into a separate server called the RTC server instead of as part of
.NET. The code name for this RTC Server is code-named Greenwich.
If you are not clear about what .NET is all about, BillG just clarified
it again for all us confused newbies: "software to connect information,
people, systems and devices". Oh, well, why couldn't you have told
me earlier? [grin]
BillG commented about .NET that the rollout has slow to catch on and
a bit uneven. Some parts of .NET are being broken out or repositioned
as either standalone services or .NET servers.
The next major wave of technologies is going to be called "Yukon".
This is after the code name of the next major release of SQL. That
version is slated to have a unified storage architecture.
And the real long-term is called the "Longhorn wave". This is named
for the next major release of Windows. In this architecture, all OS-en,
applications web services are integrated in how they store, present
and manipulate data. The big one day meeting though could be summarized
though with: hype, little substance, little that's new and noteworthy.
On the database front, MS released some tools to connect NET to the
Oracle database, and there is one planned for IBM's DB2 as well.
You can get your RC1 over here, either as CD or download:
THIRD PARTY NEWS
NSI Software Introduces Latest Double-Take 4.2
NSI Software has released version 4.2 of Double-Take, the company's
award-winning data replication and high availability software. As
a customer under maintenance, you are entitled to receive an upgrade
to the 4.2 version free of charge to be used in sales efforts,
demonstrations, training and testing. A sample of the new features
of Double-Take for Windows version 4.2, include the following:
To download the upgrade you will first have to go to:
- Improved Memory Management: higher performance
- Improved Target retry handling and queue usage alert thresholds
- Enhanced displays about connection status.
to request a new activation code for the 4.2 release. A new activation
code will be sent to you enabling you to download the update
and on-line manuals at:
You can download the new eval from the Sunbelt website at:
Today's Security Tip - Evaluate Before You Patch
A recent Computerworld security report stated that one of the best
ways system admins and security managers can save time and legwork,
is by investing in security software that keeps a log of patches
installed on each PC and server. The software can also confirm that
patches are running and will prioritize vulnerabilities.
Selecting the most effective patch management software to help
enforce your security policies can be an overwhelming task.
Worldwide, corporations annually spend more than $2 billion to
investigate, prioritize and deploy patches to erase security
vulnerabilities, according to a recent study by Aberdeen Group.
Klipsch Audio Technologies relies on St. Bernard Software's
UpdateExpert(tm) to identify servers and PCs that need patches,
scheduling upgrades after business hours. "Something that would
have taken six people four hours to do, we can set up in 10 minutes
and not have to worry about it," says Mike Fulton, network manager.
UpdateEXPERT is a software patch management tool that scans networks
for missing hotfixes and fixes discovered weaknesses. It features an
exclusive database of patches that are researched, evaluated, and
tested in-house. The product does not require a client agent for
remote deployment or installation. Download eval here:
Would Your Company Pass A Full GLBA Audit?
Analyzing responses from over 1000 financial organizations worldwide
to measure employee understanding of corporate information security
policies and, in turn, measure the effectiveness of existing security
awareness programs, the SAI Report rated participating organizations
with a "D" or "unsatisfactory" grade when it comes to appropriate
security awareness and behavior.
The SAI Report concludes that current practices and procedures fail
to correlate to higher security awareness among employees. The
financial services organizations that participated in the SAI received
an average of 65.7 out of 100 respectively, which resulted in a "D"
or "unsatisfactory" grade. PentaSafe announces their new VPC
Financial Services Content Module that assists organizations in:
Become compliant with GLBA policy and awareness requirements - Check
out our Policy Center tool and the Financial Services Content Module:
Fill out the form and a system engineer will get in touch with you
for a fast and to-the-point walk-through.
- developing, maintaining, and communicating their privacy and security policies,
- reducing their level of legal liability from "people" errors
- assessing their level of GLBA and FFIEC compliance,
- measuring employee awareness levels, and
- understanding and accessing all the Financial Services regulations and federal agency guidelines.
Close Your Number #1 Security Hole ? Your Users' Passwords.
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Enhances Existing Security
Password Bouncer provides additional password policy rules not found
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Delivers Immediate Enterprise Protection
Password Bouncers' rapid installation and policy distribution engine
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Download the free 30 day full evaluation version from:
This Week's Links We Like. Tips, Hints And Fun Stuff
I'm not making this up. Researchers see a future in microchips made
from chicken feathers? Yup.
A novel and quite brash way to get rid of your personal debts [grin]
What is the one feature that Terminal Services lacks? File Copy! No more
with this little useful tool
Do you feel lucky, pigeon? Well do ya? How to Build Your Own Laser.
PRODUCT OF THE WEEK
Universal Command Guide for Operating Systems
The ultimate operating system reference: Over 8,000 commands and 57,000 command options from every major operating system -- Windows, UNIX, Linux, NetWare, Macintosh and DOS. If you're a systems professional, chances are you're pretty familiar with commands in at least one of these operating systems. But what happens when you need to get up to speed on an operating system you don't know? This ingenious reference will have you up and running in no time. It describes and illustrates every command in every commonly used operating system, and cross-references each command to the equivalent commands in other operating systems. The Universal Command Guide for Operating Systems bridges the gap between all operating systems by cross-referencing commands between the many different operating systems that exist today.