November, 2007

  • Windows Essential Business Server - aka Centro

    Kevin Beares announces the new name of Windows Centro onto his blog, yes it will be Windows Essential Business Server. Seems like they forgot to add a calendar year to it :)

    Here is an excerpt of the announcement:

    We have a new name!

    Windows Essential Business Server is the new Microsoft server solution for small to medium businesses, with 50 to 250 client computers in their organizations.

    Windows Essential Business Server offers a standardized server configuration that is designed to meet the needs of most midsize businesses. The configuration is optimized to meet the currently recommended practices for networking, security, collaboration, and remote access. The tightly integrated Windows Essential Business Server simplifies setup, migration, and licensing for Microsoft infrastructure server products that a midsize business uses most frequently. Most network services and resources are managed through a single Windows®Essential Business Server Administration Console, which is accessible from anywhere on the network or remotely over a virtual private network.

    If you are interested in joining the Windows®Essential Business Server upcoming Beta 2 effort;

    1. Please go to,

    2. Click on Invitations and sign in with your Windows Live ID (Passport ID).

    3. Enter the following invite ID: EBSE-VKDP-276Y.

    4. You will be asked to take a short survey. 

    5. Once you complete the survey we will evaluate your application for participation in the Techbeta.

    6. Then look for an email from with further details.

    If you are going to TechEd IT Forum then you should look after the Centro sessions that have been planned in my track.

  • Performance Point Server 2007 Training Recourses

    Walter Stiers a colleague of mine points to some online training resources for Performance Point server.

    Building a planning budgeting or forecasting application

    • Module 1: Business integration
      video | workbook
    • Module 2: Architecting a PerformancePoint Server2007 planning application
      video | workbook
    • Module 3: Fundamentals of a planning application
      video | workbook
    • Module 4: Building business models and data dimensions
      video | workbook
    • Module 5: Data Loading
      video | workbook
    • Module 6: Managing roles and security in a planning application
      video | workbook
    • Module 7: Fundamentals of the Excel add-in for PerformancePoint Server 2007
      video | workbook
    • Module 8: Embedding rules and calculations into a planning application
      video | workbook
    • Module 9: Planning process management and workflows
      video | workbook

    Building a scorecard, dashboard, or analysis application

    • Module 10: Fundamentals of monitoring and analyzing data with PerformancePoint Server 2007
      video | workbook
    • Module 11: Fundamentals of dashboarding, scorecarding and analytics
      video | workbook
    • Module 12: PerformancePoint Server 2007 elements for monitoring and analysis
      video | workbook
    • Module 13: Building dashboards with PerformancePoint Server 2007
      video | workbook
    • Module 14: Managing security in dashboards, scorecards and analytic
      video | workbook

    Thought it might be interesting for some of you!

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  • Create your own IM button to put on your blog or mail signature

    I just noticed a blogpost about how to create your own IM button that you could put onto your blog or e-mail signature. It's very easy to do just go to and create your own button.


    Once you have created your button, it is also easy to add it to your Windows Live Space, Outlook, Hotmail or Windows Live Mail.

    I've created a button and putted onto my blog, feel free to add me if you want to connect with me.


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  • TechEd IT Forum 2007 Review

    WoW it has been an amazing week at TechEd IT Forum 2007 for the first time I was not an attendee neither working at "Ask The Experts" booth but working as a Track Owner for the Windows Server Track. I was not aware how much work a track owner still have to do once the event is going on. The first three days of the event I reviewed one slide deck after another, talked to speakers about what to deliver and reviewing some of the demo's they planned to deliver.

    The feedback you give us as an attendee is very valuable. Every day we went through the feedback to see where we have to work on to try to increase the session satisfaction. It has been a hell of week running from one session to another to see some of the speakers in action, feel the vibes of the session itself and from time to time it even can go wrong for the most experienced speakers amongst us. For Example John Craddock had issues with his keyboard the "0" key was stuck and when he tried to type in a 0 he got multiple of them, quite difficult if your password contains a "0". John experienced as he is managed to work around that. The weird thing is he couldn't reproduce this anymore after his session fortunately everything went fine during his redelivery.

    So after the first days of slide deck reviewing we had a bit more time to do other things for me it has been networking with corp Product teams as I am planning the Belgian TechDays 2008 (12 and 13 March) I always can use good speakers.

    On Wednesday evening we had the Belgian & Luxembourg Country drink which was very enjoyable and gives me the possibility to connect with some of the almost 200 Belgians and Luxembourg attendees.

    On Thursday I had the blogger panel discussion at lunch time, it was fun to do although the number of attendees was very low. In the afternoon we ran the Green Data Center panel which was the most appreciated panel during the whole event, which pleases me because Kevin Sangwell and I put a lot of time and energy to put together this panel.

    Just before the blogger panel there was the final of Speaker Idol and guess what yes a Belgian Exchange MVP Ilse Van Criekinge won this contest which made me happy because I know how passionate Ilse is and all the hard work she does to keep her UserGroup ProExchange running and most of all I knew it all the time that she is a good speaker and had a chance to win this contest.


    Again Congratulations Ilse! I am really looking forward to come and listen to your breakout.

    Ilse her session will be posted really soon onto the ProExchange website.

    Update: Here is Ilse her session.


    On Friday we had the last sessions of the event and for me the last was the first one I attended, mmm I will have to catch up when all videos are posted onto the TechEd IT Forum website or when the DVD arrives.

    Being a track owner took a lot of my time on top of all the things I still have to do for the local IT Pro's, it was worth it I learned a lot, networked a lot and had a lot of fun and most important of all the feedback received on the Windows Server Track was awesome. Thanks and hopefully I will be a track owner again next year!

  • WinSec UG event Nov 27: Intelligent Application Gateway 2007 (IAG)

    WinSec UserGroup organizes their second event about IAG 2007 (Intelligent Application gateway).

    Intelligent Application gateway 2007

    The session will exist of :

    • Overview of IAG 2007, including the main differences with ISA Server 2006
    • Demo of IAG 2007 : Protecting SharePoint 2007 with IAG 2007
    • Product Overview by a partner (TBA)
    • Roadmap of IAG 2007

    You'll find more details on our website (

    When: Tuesday Nov 27th - Doors Open 18h - Session start 19h

    Where: This event will be organized at the offices of Microsoft Belgium.

    Route description to Microsoft Belgium (av. Culliganlaan 1A, Diegem):

    To subscribe to the events, send an email to


  • BIWUG UG Event Nov 29: MOSS 2007 and OpenXML file format explained

    BIWUG organizes another session around different topics see below.


    18:00 - 18:30 Registration and welcome

    18:30 - 19:30 How to do branding in MOSS 2007 with master pages and themes by Joost Feyen

    Join this session to get a walkthrough of the different customization and branding options in
    Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 and Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007.
    What effort does it take to brand SharePoint? What about accessibility? When to use SharePoint Designer?  This is an interactive session where you can discuss best practices and guidelines.

    19:30 - 19:45 TechEd Experiences by Marc Pollentier

    19:45 - 20:00 Break

    20:00 - 21:00 The Open XML File Format Explained by Wouter Van Vugt

    Wouter Van Vugt is a well-known Open XML expert and MVP XML who wrote the book "Open XML - The Markup Explained". He will deliver a high-level session which will show you where you can actually use Open XML in your projects. This session is especially interesting for project managers, technical sales and architects who want to know what Open XML is all about.

    Event location: Ordina, Boomsesteenweg 28, B-2627 Schelle (Antwerpen)

    Register for this event


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  • IT-Talks UG Event Dec 8: Configuring, operating and backing up virtual platforms

    IT-Talks organizes another event around Virtualization.clip_image005[1]

    Configuring, operating and backing up virtual platforms

    Topics of the Day:

    • Configure and operate virtual platforms (Manu Verzelen)
    • Virtualization in a data center (Kurt Ghekiere - RIS<)">>)
    • Application Virtualization (Tom Gaens – Itefficiency<)">>)
    • Vmware ESX and what is new in Microsoft Virtualization
    • Backing up virtual platforms
    • Practical experience with Virtualization in a data center
    • SoftGrid application Virtualization

    Where: Spes Nostra - Koning Albertstraat 50 - 8520 Kuurne

    When: Sat Dec 8th - 10:00 - 17:30

    Do you want to register for this event? Send a mail to, Check out the the IT-Talks UG site for more information

  • VMRCplus 1.6.0 available on Microsoft Download Center

    What's new in VMRCplus 1.6.0?

    • The UI reflects Virtual Server terminology.
    • VMRCplus now offers configuration of scripts on both the Virtual Server and Virtual Machine level.
    • VMRCplus offers configuring promiscuous mode on the network so you can trace traffic in the virtual switch. This is something Virtual Server does not offer in the web administration UI.

    Of course there have been minor enhancements like storage of Console Manager coordinates, conflict handling when a shortcut already exists (something Virtual Server fails to resolve).

    The COM and LPT port assignment logic has been fixed (most of it did not work).
    The x86 installer package no longer installs on x64. This has been done to prevent issues with 32-bit VMRCplus on 64-bit Virtual Server.

    Error handling has been enhanced and several issues have been fixed.

    Source:VMRCplus in TechNet Magazine!

    Download VMRCplus


  • Operations Manager 2007 Service Pack 1 Release Candidate

    The product team is excited to announce the availability of the Operations Manager 2007 Service Pack 1 Release Candidate, on Microsoft Connect.

    The key goals of this public distribution of the Service Pack 1 RC is to gain additional feedback from production deployments, to satisfy customers who are awaiting a stable product before the end of the year, and assure that the final RTM is of the highest possible quality. The RTM of Service Pack 1 is targeted for mid-February 2008, and will:

    • Address critical customer initiated issues, including a roll-up of all hotfixes.
    • Improve the ability to deploy and use Operations Manager 2007.
    • Enhance the supportability of Operations Manager 2007.

    This Service Pack 1 RC is a publicly available release that is fully supported, and which will be fully upgradable to the final RTM version of the Service Pack. Support options include:

    To learn more about the service pack and to download the release candidate do the following:

    • Go to and sign-in with your Live ID
    • Click on the "My Participation" link
    • Select the "System Center Operations and Service Management" link

    For customers who were not already part of the OpsMgr beta they can sign-up via the page.

  • Windows PowerShell 2.0 Community Technology Preview

    Release Highlights

    This is a summary list of features added for the CTP of Windows PowerShell 2.0.  More descriptions are found in the "What's New in Windows PowerShell 2.0 CTP" link below, in the Release Notes and in the “about” files that ship with the release.

    • Compatibility with PowerShell 1.0
    • PowerShell Remoting
    • Background Jobs
    • ScriptCmdlets
    • Data-only Language
    • Script Internationalization
    • Script Debugging
    • New APIs for extracting Metadata from Commands and Parameters
    • New Parser Tokenizer API
    • New PowerShell Hosting APIs
    • Pools of Runspace
    • Restricted Runspaces
    • Graphical PowerShell
    • Out-GridView cmdlet

    Additionally a number of improvements have been made to existing Cmdlets and capabilities, including:

    • Changes to TabExpansion function
    • New parameters added to Select-String
    • Updated Type Adapters
    • Improvements to Get-Member
    • Improved ADSI support
    • New parameters added to Get-WMIObject
    • Improved Bitwise Operators (int64)

    For details checkout this blog: What’s New in Windows PowerShell 2.0 CTP

    Download Windows PowerShell 2.0 CTP


    This software is a pre-release version. It will not work the way a final version of the software does. Features will change before final release. See the blogs below and the Release Notes for further information on restrictions.

    CTP != Beta !
    Platform Requirements

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  • Windows Live Writer RTM

    I have been using this tool since the first internal release and so far I don't want to use another one. Now Windows Live Writer 2008 is finally available for everyone. Enjoy this tool.

    Download Writer 2008

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  • Windows Server 2008 Technical Overviews

    These technical overviews provide IT Professionals with information about how a Windows Server 2008 technology works. They may also cover design and planning considerations and basic setup and operating instructions. 

    The download contains the following documents:

    • DNS Server Global Query  Block List
    • Installing and Configuring and Troubleshooting the Microsoft Online Responder
    • What's New in Failover Clusters
    • What's New in Terminal Services for Windows Server 2008

    Download: WS2008 Technical Overviews

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  • Barcelona here I come :)

    I'm leaving tomorrow morning very early in the morning to TechEd IT Forum in Barcelona one of our biggest events in EMEA. During the past couple of months I have been working together with the other members of the content team to shape up the Windows Server Track. I hope you all will enjoy the sessions in the Windows Server track. If you want to have a chat, coffee, beer during the event just give me a call +32 477 36 26 37 and I'll arrange something.

    On Monday we are going to kick off the event with more than 5200 attendees, it's always great to see so much IT Pro's together.

    So expect either blog silence due to all the work that still have to be done or multiple blog posts about my week in Barcelona. Either way I will enjoy my week make sure you do too.