Vol. 11, #25 - Jun 16, 2006 - Issue #581
Gates Announces Retirement / Tech.Ed 2006 Roundup
- EDITORS CORNER
- End Of An Era: Gates Announces Retirement
- Tech.Ed 2006 Roundup
- Quote of the Week
- ADMIN TOOLBOX
- Admin Tools We Think You Shouldn't Be Without
- TECH BRIEFING
- The Seven Most Important Tech.Ed Items
- End of Support: Microsoft's Service Pack 1
- Possible Explanation For "Self-Spam"
- Vista Resources
- Step-by-Step Guide: Exchange Server Capacity Planning With Performance Monitor
- WINDOWS SERVER NEWS
- Microsoft Adopts Forefront Brand for Business Security
- WINDOWS SERVER THIRD PARTY NEWS
- No More Renaming Attachments And Beating The Filter
- And Who Won the WinIT Pro Best Of Tech.Ed Awards?
- Double-Take Software Announces Management Pack for MOM
- WServerNews 'FAVE' LINKS
- This Week's Links We Like. Tips, Hints And Fun Stuff.
- WServerNews - PRODUCT OF THE WEEK
- BOOK: Hacking Web Applications Exposed Second Edition
Groupware is not that difficult - with Kerio MailServer
"I especially liked Kerio MailServer's seamless support of the
groupware features I'm used to getting from Exchange:
calendaring, event notification, shared private folders, tasks,
and synchronization to handheld devices for Outlook (by way of
Kerio's Outlook Connector), WebMail, or Mac Entourage clients,"
comments a reviewer in the recent Windows IT Pro article that
gives the product 4.5/5 stars. Continues...
End Of An Era: Gates Announces Retirement
After yesterday's close of the markets, BillG, now 50, announced that
in two years he's going to go 'full-time' giving away his money. MS
announced a succession plan, where Ray Ozzie will become Chief Software
Architect immediately. Gates will remain the company's Chairman for
the foreseeable future. CTO Craig Mundie would assume the title of
chief research and strategy officer, and work closely with Gates
over the next two years to oversee the Redmond R&D. Ozzie is well
respected both outside and inside MS, and will do well for sure.
Gates talked about Ballmer and said he couldn't have asked for a
"better business partner or a better friend," not to mention the
"best CEO for Microsoft that I could imagine." There will be change
at MS in the coming years!
Gates to a large degree singlehandedly wrought a revolution in the
IT industry. I remember well the time that word processor files were
simply not compatible with each other, none of them. They all had to
be converted all the time to different applications. That all changed
with industry standardization to Microsoft products. But he grew up
in the era of selling boxes for a profit, and that business model is
disappearing. Ray Ozzie in his very first speech, immediately started
talking about Software as a Service (SaaS) and that is where we are
moving towards in a hurry.
Tech.Ed 2006 Roundup
It was a great show in Boston! I met many of you and thanks for all
the kudos I got. It's still fun writing this newsletter every week,
even after 10 years! The weather was great, tons of enthusiastic
and smart people at the new Convention center, and a lot of very
interesting sessions. Microsoft unveiled a new security brand called
Forefront that they will use as an umbrella for several existing
tools. One of these is Windows Client Protection rebranded to
Forefront Client Security, which they claim will see the light of
day in 2007. I got a demo, more about that below.
The big $25K Home Entertainment Center give-away was a blast. We
had over 2,000 people crowding around the booth and the lucky winner
was blown out! We'll have a whole bunch of pictures and a video in
the next issue of WServerNews. See you perhaps in 2007: New Orleans?
If you could not make it this year, here's VirtualTechEd with an
enormous amount of data to browse and videos to watch:
Quote of the Week
"Absolute truth is a very rare and dangerous commodity in the context
of professional journalism." -- Hunter S. Thompson
The Seven Most Important Tech.Ed Items
It was hard to keep up with it all, and also be at the booth to talk
to everyone, but here are the things I think were the highlights, (no
1) The first beta of the newly renamed System Center Operations Manager,
formerly Microsoft Operations Manager, and the first community technology
preview (CTP) of SQL Server Everywhere. (a slimmed-down version of MS's
database for mobile and embedded applications).
2) Microsoft announces Forefront. A series of applications that are
supposed to simplify security. Examples are ISA Server and Antigen
that are rebranded under the Forefront umbrella. Next year they expect
Forefront Client Security that does antimalware and antivirus. More
about the demo I got further below.
3) The Tech.Ed 2006 Keynote
This replay of the speech by Bob Muglia is interesting from the
perspective of looking at the future, checking out what the current
hype is, and see some demo's that show a glimpse of things to come.
Since Ray Ozzie is going to take over from Bill Gates, it's interesting
to see what he has to say as well. Warning, this is a 2 hour 20 min.
4) The Virtual Press Room
This Tech.Ed 2006 press room shows you all the stuff that was
announced, and gets you straight to the keynote speeches:
5) The new Microsoft Certified Architect Program
Microsoft is now taking applications for 250 slots in its new Microsoft
Certified Architect program, designed for experienced IT people who have
married their technical skills with their business savvy to accomplish
company goals. More at:
6) Who -is- Ray Ozzie? BillG's Successor As Chief Architect
So here is an article about Ray's vision about the future with
Software as a Service. Read this article about what he calls
technology disruption at SearchWinIT:
7) Scripting with Windows PowerShell
Scripting for Windows PowerShell (formerly known as Monad) brings together
resources for system administrators who are interested in learning about
the Windows PowerShell command line and scripting environment. Like Windows
PowerShell, this section of the Script Center is under active development.
End of Support: Microsoft's Service Pack 1
On July 11, 2006 and October 10, 2006, Microsoft will end all public
assisted support for Service Pack 1 (SP1) (see affected products).
After this date, Microsoft will no longer provide any incident
support options or security updates for this retired service pack
under the policies defined by the Microsoft Support Lifecycle policy.
To enhance the security of your computer and to continue to receive
updates for the products, it is recommend you upgrade your computer,
for free, to newer Service Packs. More on this at the MSMVP site:
Possible Explanation For "Self-Spam"
Are your users complaining about receiving spam from themselves,
and it's only a few numbers in the subject line and body of the
message? SANS reports that the messages themselves are not malicious,
but one expert suggested that the mass emails could be the work
of a botnet herder, checking the quality of his email lists, finding
which messages bounce and which don't. The mailers could be setting
the stage for a new worm that will be released. Keep your systems
free from viruses and spyware, and update your patches.
Read about Vista's security features, release date updates, Gartner's
predictions and more. And get a Vista security tip from site expert
Brien Posey. He'll discuss some of the new security features and the
impact that they will likely have on you. At SearchWinIT.com:
Step-by-Step Guide: Exchange Server Capacity Planning With Performance Monitor
Don't let growth-related performance issues and outages catch you by
surprise. This step-by-step guide will teach you how to use the
Performance Monitor tool for Exchange Server long-term capacity
planning and trend analysis. At: SearchExchange.com
||WINDOWS SERVER NEWS
Microsoft Adopts Forefront Brand for Business Security
Redmond announced a new brand - Forefront - for several of its
existing and expected security business products. The new line
consists of Forefront Client Security (FCS), the former Microsoft
Client Protection, which promises to deliver antimalware and
AV for business desktops, laptops and server OSen. There is an
early beta out with a select few and a public beta is planned
late this year. The final product they say is scheduled for the
first half of next year. We'll believe it when we see it. Count
on it a year from now, maybe.
I had a demo of that early FCS beta at Tech.Ed. It looks like a
completely revamped version of the old Giant engine with the GCAD
AV thrown in. It's AD and Group Policy driven, and needs a SQL
back-end. Ultimately only SQL 2005 will be supported. Some MOM
modules will be pre-installed with the FCS. It looks like they
built in a MOMpack so it talks to MOM natively. Updates will go
via SMS or WSUS. Malware and AV will be updated together. From
what I can see, this is geared to medium to large companies.
There will be some more Forefront Security products, like for
Exchange Server and for SharePoint. These are new versions
of Sybari's Antigen software, resulting from Redmond's Sybari
acquisition last year. They will also pull ISA Server under
the Forefront umbrella, with a ISA Server 2006 due in September.
Windows Live OneCare will remain Microsoft's brand for home PCs.
We had a look at the new Antigen. It now has a whole slew of
AV engines you can choose from, and some small other changes
to do with integration, but you are looking at 95% of the old
code from what it seems. Except that it's now a MS product, and
that we get anecdotal reports from customers that the yearly
maintenance has gone significantly up in price. More about that
later. My opinion? Having eight AV engines is overkill, and
is like having a 16-cylinder car engine. Nice to boast about
in marketing, but how about the resource consumption?
Oh, and as per the new Software as a Service (SaaS) strategy,
they are going to charge you for Antigen for Exchange per user
per month, forever. Nooooooooo!
Here is the Forefront Client Security Vaporware Data Sheet (PDF):
||WINDOWS SERVER THIRD PARTY NEWS
No More Renaming Attachments And Beating The Filter
A lot of people at Tech.Ed were happily surprised with the fact
that Ninja was able to look into the file header and could see
if an attachment was renamed. That stops users from bypassing
Ninja. But even better was the fact that the whole thing is
policy driven. So you can allow developers inside your outfit
exchange .exes if they want, but only internal and not to the
outside, or not from the outside in.
The best is that you can get Ninja's attachment filtering for
free for two years. Yup, the full thing, and no charge for 24
months. Ninja supports Exchange 2000/03, runs on over 1,000
production servers (climbing fast) and you can download it here:
And Who Won the WinIT Pro Best Of Tech.Ed Awards?
At Tech.Ed they were announced at the Windows IT Pro party
on Wednesday night. Congrats to all the winners. I'll list
the category, with each winner underneath:
- Business Intelligence Systems:
ICS Limited with RSInteract
- Database Development and Administration:
Quest Spotlight for SQL Server
- Development Tools:
Neverfail for Sharepoint
NetIQ's Security Manager
- Software components and Middleware:
Component One's Sudio Enterprise
- Systems Management and Operations:
- Most Innovative:
Polyserve's DB Util for SQL Server
- Best New Product:
Altiris Software's Virtualization Solution
Double-Take Software Announces Management Pack for MOM
For Faster Issue Resolution and Higher Levels of Operational
Intelligence. Since Double-Take is the FIRST real-time replication
and failover solution to integrate with MOM, this is news everyone
needs to know. It shows their leadership in the business. Among
several new features, the Double-Take Management Pack for MOM
The MOM-pack will be a download on the DT support site.
- MOM alerts triggered by Double-Take events
- MOM alerts triggered by Double-Take performance counters.
- Product knowledge compiled from Double-Take Software Technical
Support to help solve problems.
- Double-Take focused Views for the Operator Console that display the
server state, alerts, and events for all Double-Take servers.
||WServerNews 'FAVE' LINKS
This Week's Links We Like. Tips, Hints And Fun Stuff.
- If you have a fat pipe, this video is worth downloading (95MB),
but it's worth watching this stuffed bear in a remote control
model airplane (WMV and direct link):
- You know that a bottle of coke and mentos together cause a geyser
of up to 20 feet, right? Here is a girl in the UK that's going to
try it in a different way: [safe for office environments]
- Ron Markezich, Microsoft's Chief Information Officer, discusses
Microsoft's "dog fooding" program and he eats some of his own:
- This is an advanced programmable robot that can walk, run, kick,
stand on one leg, turn cartwheels, and dance right out of the box
(watch performance video).
- This site is a spoof on a popular UK Government website:
- Eugene's Kasperski's Blog on changes in the AV industry
||WServerNews - PRODUCT OF THE WEEK
BOOK: Hacking Web Applications Exposed Second Edition
Here is how they promote the book. I have a copy. It's good!
Since 1999, Hacking Exposed has educated millions of readers about
the ease of hacking into computer networks and systems. Hacking
Exposed: Web Applications 2 shows you how to meet this challenge
with the two-pronged approach adapted from the original Hacking
Exposed, the best-selling digital security book of all time.
First, we catalog the greatest threats your web application will face
and explain how they work in excruciating detail. How do we know
these are the greatest threats? Because we are hired by the world's
largest companies to break into their web applications, and we use
them on a daily basis to do our jobs. Once we have your attention
by showing you the damage that can be done, we tell you how to
prevent each and every attack. More at: