The Electric Wand

Thoughts of a technology enthusiast.

March, 2007

  • Windows Live Mail Desktop - replaces Outlook Express for Hotmail use

    I've been running the "dogfood" version of Windows Live Mail Desktop (WLMD) for a while now, and found it to be really stable and usable. It's basically a superset of the built-in Windows Mail application from Windows Vista, which supercedes Outlook Express...
  • ZDNet sings praises of Office Communications Server beta

    Like probably millions of other people, I get the daily ZDNet Tech Update Today (since long before RSS brought news feeds to the masses...) and was floored a little by David Berlind's column today. I think David's a good commentator - normally sails between...
  • Hosting of applications - the inevitable future?

    I've been musing over some medium term IT trends lately and one idea that keeps coming back into frame is the seemingly inevitable trend towards hosting of applications. Take Exchange, as just one example... Hosted Exchange * has been available for years...
  • Batch-convert Office files to 2007's Open XML format

    A customer asked me the other day if Microsoft was ever going to build batch-conversion facilities to take old format files that live on a network fileshare, and convert them to the newer XML-based formats - his reasoning was the sometimes considerable...
  • Is that a Zune in your pocket...?

    (or are you just pleased to see me) OK, after talking about media players just over a month ago , I couldn't stop myself from buying a Zune when I was in the US last month (no willpower). At $249 + tax, with the exchange rate currently so favourable,...
  • Exchange 2003/2007 clustering & high availability

    The Exchange development team have done a nice job of expanding the high availability options with the 2007 release. With Exchange 2003, the only real HA design was to use what is now known as a Single Copy Cluster (SCC) - ie. there's one copy of the...
  • Water, Water everywhere, nor any drop to drink

    So it's been a quiet week on The Electric Wand, largely because of the fact that I woke up the other day and looked out of the front of my house to see... leaving the entire downstairs floor soaked in water, and the footwells of one of the cars with a...
  • Shortcut to quickly set your voicemail greeting in Exchange 2007 UM

    I love the Exchange UM system my voicemail is supplied by, though it can take a while to navigate using voice commands if all you want to do is set your voicemail greeting. I (like a lot of people in Microsoft UK) set the greeting every day to set expectations...
  • Free domain name, web site + email address with Office Live Basics beta

    I got given a card yesterday proclaiming an offer of free domain name, web site and email service, all hosted by Office Live Basics, which is in beta at www.officelive.co.uk : Sounded too good to be true, but literally minutes later I was logging...
  • Calibri: a font like no other...

    Someone asked me a semi-bizarre question today: the new fonts which are in Office 2007 and Windows Vista, especially Calibri (which, I must say, I think looks great)... Can they be installed on older versions of Windows or Office? I had never really appreciated...
  • Is your email compliant with the (UK) Companies Act?

    A semi little-known fact... as of the 1st January 2007, the rules for UK companies regarding business stationery changed. Just like every registered company is bound to include certain information (the registered office, the geography of registration...