The conference has officially begun in Barcelona, with over 5,000 IT pros, Microsoft employees, and partners talking about currently available Microsoft products and those due to be released in the coming months.  It's going to be a busy week, full of lots of detailed technical information.  (For those of you attending, please look me up during the week, at the very least to just say "hi".)

In the opening keynote, official announcements were made about:

  • System Center Configuration Manager 2007, now available.
  • System Center Data Protection Manager 2007, now available.
  • System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2007, now available.
  • New System Center Server Management Suite Enterprise Edition licensing options.
  • The official name of Windows Server virtualization: Hyper-V.
  • Licensing and prices for Windows Server 2008, including versions that contain Hyper-V.  The price difference between Hyper-V and non-Hyper-V versions: $28.
  • A new online community for IT pros, called TechNet edge.
  • The Microsoft Deployment solution accelerator, something near and dear to me :-)  (Bill Anderson did a nice demo of Microsoft Deployment during the keynote, showing some of the new server deployment capabilities.)
  • Upcoming virtualization-related solution accelerators.
  • A new System Center Alliance for ISVs and partners offering products that extend and enhance the System Center products.
  • Etc.

See the official press release at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2007/nov07/11-12ITForumPR.mspx for all the details.

I have a few sessions scheduled during the week:

  • CLI308, Microsoft Deployment and System Center Configuration Manager 2007 for Client Deployment Walkthrough, Thursday 10:45-12:00 in room 113.
  • SRV323, Windows Server 2008 Microsoft Deployment Overview 1: Microsoft Deployment Overview, Thursday 13:30-14:45 in room 113.
  • SRV324, Windows Server 2008 Microsoft Deployment 2: Lite Touch Installation (LTI) Demonstration, Friday 13:30-14:45 in room 112.
  • CLI05-IS, Notes from the Field: Examples of Deploying Windows Vista and Customizing Microsoft Deployment (formerly BDD) Tools and Processes for the Enterprise,
    Thursday 15:45-17:00 in Room 130.
  • CLI08-IS, What’s New with Microsoft Deployment Tools: Technical Discussion with Deployment Solution Developers and Experts, Friday 09:00-10:15 in Room 132.

Lots of fun :-)