Premiere Dallas-based Microsoft Call Center is the Latest Victim of
If you have an enterprise-level support agreement with Microsoft,
then there's a good chance that you've talked to one of the crack
PSS support pros at the Microsoft call center in Las Colinas,
Texas (Las Colinas is just a few miles from downtown Dallas). The
center has been answering those tough questions for years and some
of us have forged relationships with the support personnel there.
If you've noticed that some of PSS folks that you've worked with
closely over the last few years don't answer your emails anymore,
it might be because they lost their jobs. Rumor has it that the center is slated for shutdown sometime in
2004 and that those jobs are being outsourced to India. We can't
say for sure, but we're thinking about learning Hindi, just in case:
Thinking of Applying a Patch? Please TEST it First
The only thing sadder than a man whose wife just left him and took
his dog and his pickup truck is the fellow who just cratered his
production Exchange Server by applying an untested security patch.
With the huge number of "fixes" that are released, there are bound
to be a few that end up breaking things instead of fixing them.
Check out this problem that Ken Olson shared with us regarding the
latest RPC patch:
"I installed the fix on an SBS2000 server that was connected to a
WinFrame 1.7 server (based on NT 3.51) and that is not a good
combination. I'll grant you that it is not a common combination
but I got random intermittent communication errors between the two
servers. Fortunately, the error messages on the 3.51 box referred
to an RPC communication issue so I figured out what the problem was,
uninstalled the patch and everything was back to normal. Just
thought you should know."
Stay tuned for more patch related horror stories next week.
Mark Minasi Webcast: "When is an Operating System Obsolete?"
Are you one of those "old school" admins who subscribe to the adage
that if it's not broke, there's no need to fix (or upgrade) it?
You're not alone.There are untold thousands of shops still humming
along on Windows NT 4.0. They've finally gotten everything working
right after years of fiddling around with the thing and they're
perfectly happy sitting safe and secure, far from the cutting edge.
The problem is that Microsoft is planning to pull the rug out from
under them. If you're one of them, you'll want to check out Mark
Minasi's September 16th Webcast. Mark will give you some advice on
how to stay afloat even as the current tries to push you upstream
toward an upgrade against your will:
New Dfs Enhancements in Windows Server 2003 Could Cut TCO
The Distributed File System (Dfs) introduced with Windows 2000 got
a bit of fanfare before the OS was released, but you didn't hear
much about after it hit the streets. It might have been because
more people swore at it than by it. If you're one of those folks
who found Dfs to be a disappointment, especially in the performance
department, take heart. Dfs's sullied reputation might be in for a
change, with the improvements Microsoft has made to it in Windows
Do You Believe Windows Server 2003 Sales Outpace Windows 2000? Maybe Not
Last week we mentioned that it appeared as if Windows Server 2003
sales were outpacing Windows 2000 sales. We thought perhaps it was
related to the current economic upswing. Although that made us feel
good, our little rush of happiness was short-lived. W2knews readers
quickly handed us a clue-stick as to what might be going on. Here's
what Marc-Andre D'Amour had to say about the issue:
"I saw in the last W2Knews that Windows Server 2003 sales are out-
pacing the sales of W2K. I'm a reseller and I know why: We cannot
buy Windows Server 2000 licenses anymore, we are selling 2003
licenses (which are backward compatible) with a W2K media kit and
we install Windows 2000. The only way to sell W2K Server is to sell
retail boxes. And we only sell open licenses because it is less
expensive. Microsoft can say that the new OS is growing fast, but
we all know the fact that Windows 2000 is dominant. Thanks for your
attention and continue the good work!"
Our thanks to Marc-Andre for a new perspective from the resale
insider's point of view.