As I’ve said before I’m a bit unsure about whether IT Pros have the time or inclination to watch technical videos. With our shortened attention spans and demands on our time I am very sure that watching an hour long or even half hour video is going to be watched very often.
So James and I cam up with a cunning plan to use my drawings and his deeper knowledge of Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 to make …er.. some more videos. However to make these much more useful we have taken a chainsaw to our demos and hyperlinked them all together on YouTube. All you need to do is click on what interests you and when you’ve finished just go back up the menu.
The start video is here..
This isn’t going to cover anywhere as much detail as you’ll get by coming to the UK launch event at Wembley on 6th October so you should try and make time to get to that if you can by following these links.
Finally thanks to Tony Hart and Vision On for the inspiration to take up art and Microsoft SongSmith for the royalty free music!
I am part of a small team preparing for the launch of Windows 7, its big brother Windows Server 2008 R2 and Exchange 2010 on 6th October at Wembley stadium. I volunteered to be the producer as I am not presenting, and this essentially means that I’ll get the blame if you don’t have a great event.
We have a server track and a desktop track with 45min – 1 Hour sessions from the top Microsoft UK experts who are working with the customers who are already deploying Windows 7 etc.
Demand is going to be high for this as and even with 1400 or so places available you really need to register now if you want to attend..
See you there!
When I am not doing the day job I like to draw and paint to relax so I have combined a bit of business & pleasure for the SQL Bits Goes West conference by doing a few cartoons for them…
As you can see the event has grown to three days. While there has always been a deep dive, paid for training day, there is now a paid for day (the cost depends on how early you register) specifically for SQL Server 2008 and R2.
I am expecting to speak on the 2008/R2 day specifically on Report Builder 3, but I imagine the main draw will be Donald Farmer, who is not only a very engaging speaker he is also pretty much Mr BI in the Microsoft product team. The organisers have also managed to persuade Thomas Kejser of the SQL Customer Advisory Team (SQLCAT) to present as well and so you can be assured of some deep technical content.
I see a lot of comments on Twitter making comments about how hard SQL Server is to install and so I thought I would go through a simple installation based on the August Technical Preview, SQL Server 2008 R2. I also used the latest operating system Windows Server 2008 R2
We are also having a debate internally about the relative usefulness of videos & blogging and so my walkthrough is available in three formats
I can easily look at the numbers of hits against each of these links but some comments about what format you prefer to consume technical information would also help.
A simple top tip I got form James O’Neill to get a bit more oomph out of your laptop is to ram in a an SD Card for ready boost when you’re not loading up your photographs. This feature came in with Vista and is still there in Windows 7, and is a caching technology to service random disk reads. It’s smart enough to realise you’re using a large file and wlil go straight to disk for this as flash type devices are typically slower than normal disks for sequential access.
If you haven’t got AutoPlay enabled then right click and select AutoPlay..
Select Speed up my System
Dedicate it to Readyboost..
and your done.
and as you can see it’s in now showing full. BTW I saw a 2x pack of SanDisk memory for £12 in Tescos at the weekend.
James also reckons this works well for hibernate as well if you have a large enough card. I like the idea of using an SD card because it doesn’t project out of the machine and doesn’t take up a valuable USB port. I also notice that on some netbooks their are two SD slots possibly because the manufacturers have foreseen this.
Embarrassingly my other top tip is to wedge a bit of cardboard under your DVD drive bay to stop the huge noise it makes when playing a film DVD!
While all of us IT Professionals work hard to make the infrastructure as secure as possible, we largely have to live with the security we are given, be it in the operating system, attendant drivers, or applications.,
Of course it’s developers who create all of this software, and while this skill has not been on my CV for ten years I was interested in how security is baked into software like SQL Server 2008 and Windows. So armed with a video camera I button-holed Glenn Pittaway, Group Program Manager of the Security Development Lifecycle (SDL) in Microsoft..
The SDL methodology is now at the core of all development work that has an internet facing element (i.e. virtually everything!) at Microsoft. You might argue that this gives this gives Microsoft developers an edge over the competition as they can write more secure code more quickly, however these same SDL resources are also publicly available.
Because security is only as good as the weakest link and because a user simply isn’t interested in the detail they just want to work, shop, search and love. For example I saw that Adobe was having some issues with the alerts around updating applications based on AIR. You would think this would cause a bit of mirth amongst my fellow Micrsofties when in fact we would rather help Adobe resolve these kinds of issues so that security gets taken out of the equation to decide on what application to run and make Windows as safe and secure as possible.
So if you work with those developer types can I suggest that you point them to my 12 minute SDL video if they aren’t using it already, so that their stuff isn’t the weakest link in your organisation.
The first publicly available technical preview of SQL Server 2008 R2 has just been released to TechNet / MSDN subscribers. As with the development of SQL Server 2008 each successive CTP will have more features in.
This CTP’s main feature is the Report Builder 3, and also included multiple machine management and support for 256 cores (which need Windows Server 2008 R2 as well).
So no Gemini preview this time around, which is partly due to the dependency on Office 2010 which hasn’t yet been made the subject of a beta as yet.
I haven’t seen this beta on our internal shares so I will be downloading really soon to see whether what has happened to Report Builder myself!
Chris Webb MVP can, to quote a friend of mine can, “Make MDX sound interesting”. I have to say when I first when on a course on MDX the tutor went for the “Make MDX confusing and boring” approach.
Chris has recently coauthored a book on Expert Cube Development with Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Analysis Services with Marco Russo and Alberto Ferrari who are the experts on many to many fact tables and run SQLBI. I mention this not because they sent me free copy (but thanks anyway!) but because it fills a huge need for anyone wanting to jump into the fascinating world of the cube.
What bought this home to me was a conversion with a small developer outfit last week who were trying to get some telemetry together to measure energy efficiency. They are very competent developers and understood their data well. But they had a brief from the client to provide an excel analysis capability of that data and didn’t really know what how to go about doing this.
I could direct them to the 2 Kimball books on my blog bookshelf, but this new book gives you the practical advice on implementing Kimball (and Immon as well) into real cubes that not only give users the insight they need but are fast and easy to maintain. So my advice to Marcus will now be to splash out on this book.
The only problem I have with the book is that the “Expert” in the title may put off the newbie to BI. In fact I think this book is even better for them as it helps get a BI project get off to a good start which is then developed in the book as it dives into the dark corners of MDX, many to many fact tables, partitions etc.
While I am on the subject of Chris Webb, he’s also one of the organisers and speakers at SQL Bits, so you might want to register for the next event in Newport on 19-21st November.
Microsoft’s approach to stuff is to ship the basic product as part of a license and then provide you with lots of other add-ins, packs, resource kits and so on which are all free to use on top of what you just paid for e.g.
This is good for IT professionals, because it doesn’t clutter up the operating system/ application with stuff you don’t need, it's good for Microsoft and the IT Professional, because these can be continually updated and enhanced independently of the application. The only downside is that you need to know where to find these extras and install them seperately.
Sometimes it’s not the add-on or gadget you need it’s simply knowing how to make the best of the product, so you need to know where to find the virtual labs or the relevant whitepapers.
To make all this a little easier Alex Ball has created a special page on TechNet with all this on..
We hope it’s a definitive list, but if you find something we’ve missed please let us know - we are only human.