Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Microsoft Shared Computer Toolkit

Thought this was interesting, the Microsoft Shared Computer Toolkit has been released in Beta.
This tool is primarily designed for small businesses in order to help them lock down their shared computers even if they don't have Active Directory.

Download and information from here

The main tools are as follows.

A Windows Disk Protection Tool designed to protect the core operating system and program files from being permanently modified;

A Windows Restrictions Tool that allows for the tailoring of individual users' profiles. Among the variables that can be locked down: access to the command prompt, Internet Explorer settings and the Registry Editor;

A User Profiles Tool that enables the simple creation and deletion of user profiles on a shared computer;

An Accessibility Tool that lets users customize their environments with things like high-visibility backgrounds, StickyKeys, etc.

The toolkit will work with the Windows XP Service Pack 2 release of XP Home, Professional or Tablet

Thursday, June 23, 2005

HP/Microsoft Worldwide SMB Nation Dublin Style

Have to say, I really enjoyed today's (yesterday at this stage) presentation. I found what Harry B had to say about passive income and trying to move away from the sole proprietor model very interesting.

If you are providing services around SBS or even considering it I would reccomend attending this one dayer if it's in your locality

The idea of being able to use the solution accelerators to provide a teaching framework and maybe even act as an operations manual to a new staff member is very appealing.

Link to solution accelorator from Microsoft

I have to say the highlight for me was meeting a lot of like minded individuals and getting some really get ideas from everyone I managed to talk too.

Not to say the free drink and food wasn't welcome at the end of the night, thanks Jordan from IPromptu. I want at least 1 NFR copy of vonexus or I'm moving to the dark side (funny I always thought the dark side was the M guys and not the L guys if you know what I mean.

Nick true to his word has already setup the listserver for SBSIRELAND.COM which hopefully can act as a jumping off point for an SBS Usergroup that could benefit all of us.

Colin thanks for hosting the event and thanks for the kind offer of a room in Microsoft to host the Usergroup Meetings.

Harry http://www.smbnation has also given us some of his books to provide as prizes during our first year, great stuff.

Don't worry guys I have already gone chasing the DVD with the SBS SP1 VPC image that Harry mentioned with the hope we can give this away to attendees at the first meeting.

Don't usually have my commercial web site pointing here but to be honest I would like to at least temporarily make this blog my focus on the web and would love to hear your comments and would love to get any contributions that you think would be worth sharing.

Unfortunately have not managed to get a Beer sponsor yet but trust me I'm working on it :-)
anyone got a pub as a customer ?

Please throw comments, suggestions abuse as you see fit

Regards Mark

Monday, June 06, 2005

Exchange 2003 SP2 I Can't wait

It's time to go to sleep here in Ireland, but I had to blog about this, What's the excitement about a service pack I hear you say well simply this, as soon as you apply Service Pack 2 for Exchange 2003 scheduled for release second half of this year

the single mailbox store limit in Exchange which has always been 16gb will increase to 75 GB that's a huge increase I think you will agree, does this apply to SBS well yes it does, will this make a huge difference you betcha it now means more SBS consultants can with confidence chase larger clients knowing that Exchange will not be the weak link anymore. Lets be clear 16GB 7 years ago was more than enough for 50 or 60 users however given how we use our mailboxes today it's not enough and to be honest this limit has stopped me on more than one occasion putting in SBS and I am delighted to see Microsoft have addressed this issue finally. Michael Klein in the new Advanced Windows Small Business Server 2003 Best Practices book published by Harry B's SMB Nation highlights this as a major squeeze point for larger companies.

Talking about the book I am really impressed how detailed and techie the content is, coming from an enterprise background I expected the content to be good but I didn't expect to be pushed hard technically, boy was I wrong, I have to say all the chapters I have read so far have been fantastic, Kevin's on faxing was spot on, Susan's on security blew me away very detailed and a huge number of great tools mentioned. Susan I think you managed to teach and catch that fish !. Michael's exchange chapter gave me loads of new material and made me really enjoy learning new tricks with Exchange.

To be honest I cannot seem to get away from SBS and how working with it and it's users still manages to keep my enterprise skills sharp. To be honest I beginning to think an SBS consultant has to work harder for a living than his or her large enterprise peer.

Comments. heckling any feedback all welcome