Archive 14

office    Deploying Microsoft Exchange 2000 Server Clusters (Nov 20)

Windows Clustering is a Microsoft Windows® 2000 Server feature that administrators can use to achieve continuous availability of server resources. Read this Exchange Online Book to help you understand how Exchange 2000 uses Windows Clustering and how to:

  • Plan for and create Exchange 2000 clusters

  • Monitor the performance of Exchange 2000 clusters

  • Maintain the availability of Exchange 2000 clusters

Download: Deploying Microsoft Exchange 2000 Server Clusters

office    Microsoft Operations Manager (MOM) Management Pack for Microsoft Office SharePoint Portal Server 2003 (Nov 20)

The Microsoft Office SharePoint Portal Server 2003 Management Pack module monitors events placed in the Application event log. This Management Pack module highlights events that may indicate possible service outages or configuration problems, so you can quickly take corrective or preventative actions. For example, this Management Pack module alerts you of the following critical conditions:

  • Data backup or restore fails

  • Core services such as search, alert notifications and administration are not running

  • Content source crawl fails

  • Search propagation of one or more content indexes fails

  • Audience compilation or profile import fails

This Management Pack module quickly brings any failures or configuration problems to your attention, increasing the availability and performance of SharePoint Portal Server. This Management Pack module provides the knowledge and expertise you need to leverage Operations Manager for immediate return on your investment.

Download: Microsoft Operations Manager (MOM) Management Pack for Microsoft Office SharePoint Portal Server 2003

office    Steve Ballmer Microsoft Office System Launch Video: Productivity in the Digital Decade (Nov 20)

Recorded in Orlando, Florida on October 21, 2003, see Microsoft chief executive officer Steve Ballmer’s keynote presentation for the Microsoft Office System launch.

Download: Steve Ballmer Microsoft Office System Launch Video: Productivity in the Digital Decade

office    Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services Management Pack Guide (Nov 20)

This document describes the monitoring scenarios that are supported by the Microsoft® Windows SharePoint Services Management Pack and includes detailed instructions for deploying, configuring, and tuning the Management Pack. This guide also includes operational guidance and reference information that lists the contents of the Management Pack.

Download: Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services Management Pack Guide

info    Consumers plagued by opt-in marketing spam (Nov 19)

Anger mounts over junk mails from businesses, but EU laws look set to make the problem worse.

Over half of all opt-in marketing emails are irrelevant, inappropriate and little better than spam, according to a recent poll of internet users. One in six of all spam messages received by UK internet users is junk sent by businesses to consumers who have signed up to receive news and special offers. But the survey, conducted by customer-profiling software firm NCorp, found that seven out of 10 of the 500 consumers questioned would have “little hesitation” in transferring their business to another company if they were consistently sent ‘second degree spam’ after signing up to an electronic mailing list.

Two out of five respondents said they found marketing as annoying as double-glazing salespeople. Only one in five marketing emails contains content tailored to a recipient’s preferences and interests. And an overwhelming majority – 96.5 per cent – of the survey’s respondents said companies should have a duty of care to only send out marketing information and offers by email that they know will be relevant and of interest to the recipient.

“Sending spam is completely socially unacceptable, whatever form it takes,” said Martin Blackburn, managing director of NCorp. Consumers feel extremely let down when they are consistently sent irrelevant and inappropriate content after giving a company their permission to be emailed, he added. But he warned that the problem of second degree spam was set to worsen as new UK and EU legislation effectively banned unsolicited communications. “Hardcore spammers will therefore seek to cover themselves by using opt-in mailing lists. This means honest businesses will have to work even harder to win over the trust and confidence of consumers,” he said.

View: Consumers plagued by opt-in marketing spam

office    Huawei Teams With Microsoft (Nov 19)

Stepping up the pressure on Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) in the VOIP equipment market, China’s Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. has announced a partnership with Microsoft Corp., a move analysts say is bound to raise the hairs on Cisco’s neck.

Cisco and Huawei have been at loggerheads since the incumbent provider slapped a lawsuit on Huawei, accusing the company of violating copyright laws and stealing intellectual property to use in its products and support materials. Cisco recently halted the suit pending an independent review of Huawei products, after Huawei said it had changed its source code.

Now Huawei is back on the offensive, teaming up with Microsoft in China, where the two firms will sell an integrated package of next-generation network equipment from Huawei coupled with Microsoft’s Exchange Server 2003. Dubbed U-SYS WorkSpace, the offering is aimed at carriers looking to offer IP Centrex and other hosted IP services like Microsoft Exchange.

View full story: Huawei Teams With Microsoft

office    Microsoft Connecting Web Conferencing with IM (Nov 19)

Next month, Microsoft Corp. is planning to release an update to its Office Live Meeting 2003 that will integrate it with Windows Messenger so that users can initiate Web conferencing sessions right from the enterprise instant messaging client. In an interview with during the Comdex trade show here, Microsoft officials said the move is one of many that the software maker is planning to more deeply integrate its various products with Live Meeting, the renamed Web conferencing service it acquired from PlaceWare Inc.

The Redmond, Wash., company plans to go as far as to introduce in 2005 a server-based version of Live Meeting, something the company hinted at when it introduced Live Meeting 2003 in September. While details are still being worked out, the server version will either be a stand-alone offering or a feature within Microsoft’s Office Live Communications Server presence and IM software introduced with Office System 2003 in October, said David Hastie, product manager in the real-time collaboration group.

Any server version also would work in conjunction with the hosted service so that enterprises could mix and mingle their approach by, for example, using the server software with internal employees while connecting attendees from outside the enterprise through the hosted service, Hastie said.

View full story: Microsoft Connecting Web Conferencing with IM

office    Updated: Windows SharePoint Services Administrator’s Guide (Nov 19)

Version 1.2
Includes updated “Capacity Planning” topic.

This download contains information about managing Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services, including:

  • Planning

  • Deployment Scenarios

  • Installation

  • Security

  • Configuration

  • Administration

  • Backup and Migration

  • Maintenance

  • Customization

  • Troubleshooting

  • Reference

Download: Windows SharePoint Services Administrator’s Guide

office    Outlook 2003 Performs Slowly or Stops Responding When Connected to Exchange Server 2003 Through HTTP (Nov 18)

When you use Microsoft Office Outlook 2003 to connect to a Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 e-mail server by using a remote procedure call (RPC) over HTTP, Outlook 2003 may perform slowly or stop responding (hang).

This issue may occur in one or both of the following scenarios:

  • The Bypass proxy server for local addresses check box is selected in the Microsoft Internet Explorer options, and the HTTP connection to your Exchange Server 2003 e-mail server can be made through the HTTP proxy server on the network that you are connected to.

  • Outlook 2003 has issued a local RPC call that is waiting for a remote RPC call to complete. This problem is more noticeable when you are using a slow network connection.

View KB article: Outlook 2003 Performs Slowly or Stops Responding When Connected to Exchange Server 2003 Through HTTP

howto    Added Content: Adding Sound to Your E-mail (Nov 18)

Adding sound to a mail message in Outlook Express is pretty straight forward; Forward-> Background-> Sound. In Microsoft Office Outlook it isn’t that straight forward at all. It is even quite hard to find. Probably because Microsoft Office Outlook is targeted to a more business public than a home user one. But if you look a bit closer you’ll find that you can do a lot more fun stuff Microsoft Office Outlook than Outlook Express. This guide not only instructs you how to add a sound to an e-mail but also leads you to options to let you add stuff like scrolling text or even a movie!

View: Adding Sound to Your E-mail

info    Microsoft Anti-Spam Virtual Press Room (Nov 18)

Yesterday Microsoft launched the Microsoft Anti-Spam Virtual Press Room. This site has been designed to provide you with all the latest news and information about Microsoft Corp.’s efforts to work with customers, partners, government, law enforcement and industry to help solve the spam problem for e-mail users.

View: Microsoft Anti-Spam Virtual Press Room

office    Mail server flaw opens Exchange to spam (Nov 18)

Administrators of e-mail systems based on Microsoft’s Exchange might have spammers using their servers to send unsolicited bulk e-mail under their noses, a consultant warned this week.

Aaron Greenspan, a Harvard University junior and president of consulting company Think Computer, published a white paper Thursday detailing the problem, discovered when a client’s server was found to be sending spam. Greenspan’s research concluded that Exchange 5.5 and 2000 can be used by spammers to send anonymous e-mail. He says even though software Microsoft provides on its site certifies that the server is secure, it’s not.

“If the guest account is enabled (on Exchange 5.5 and 2000), even if your login fails, you can send mail, because the guest account is there as a catchall,” he said. “Even if you think you’ve done everything (to secure the server), you are still open to spammers.”

Microsoft, however, said the problem is relatively minor and that the company hasn’t had many complaints. “This particular method of sending spam relies on specifically configured servers or is leveraging weaknesses in the protocol itself,” the software giant said in a statement issued in response to questions from CNET “The fact is that Microsoft has not received a lot of calls from customers that have experienced problems detailed by Think Computer.” Moreover, the company said the issue doesn’t affect the latest version of the software, Exchange Server 2003.

View full article: Mail server flaw opens Exchange to spam

info    Microsoft’s Protect Your PC Campaign Gains New Industry Partner (Nov 18)

Today at COMDEX Las Vegas 2003, Microsoft Corp. announced continuing industry support for its Protect Your PC campaign, demonstrated by a new anti-virus and firewall offering from Computer Associates International Inc. (CA). Starting today, CA will offer its eTrust EZ Armor consumer anti-virus and firewall desktop security suite, including free updates and signatures for a year. The special CA offer includes one year of personal firewall and antivirus protection, including daily virus signature updates. The free software will be available for download through June 30, 2004, from the CA Web site and can be accessed via a link from Microsoft Protect Your PC Web site. CA joins other leading vendors working with Microsoft to increase awareness and education about PC security among customers.

The Protect Your PC campaign is designed to help consumers understand a few simple measures they can take to decrease threats from viruses and other malicious attacks. Customers are encouraged to take three key steps to protect their PCs:

  • Use an Internet firewall on all PCs and laptops

  • Update their computer

  • Use up-to-date anti-virus software

View: Microsoft’s Protect Your PC Campaign Gains New Industry Partner

other    New Hotmail demo (Nov 18)

Two months ago I posted you a demo of the new Hotmail. Now there is a second demo available. It shows new Hotmail features like Calendar and Calendar sharing. The Contacts area has gotten a nice update as well.

View: Old demo (you must be logged on to Hotmail first)
View: New demo

info    Microsoft Announces the Next Version of the Tablet PC Operating System (Nov 17)

Today at COMDEX Las Vegas 2003, Microsoft Corp. announced Windows® XP Tablet PC Edition 2004, the latest version of its Tablet PC operating system. The new version features deep integration of pen support in Windows XP, making it easier to create text anywhere in Windows and familiar Windows applications. In addition to recently announced tools in the Tablet PC SDK that enable them to create pen-aware Web pages, the new operating system now offers software developers a rich set of capabilities to deliver innovative software applications based on the Tablet PC platform.

Key features of Windows XP Tablet PC Edition 2004 include the following:

  • Enhanced “ink to text” experience throughout Windows and in any Windows application, makes the pen a mainstream input device. Inserting text is easier with the new Tablet PC Input Panel (TIP), and word and case recognition is improved. Developers and users can even add “rules” for how handwriting should be recognized in certain text fields (e.g., e-mail messages, addresses, URLs).

  • Integration in Microsoft Office 2003 and Office OneNote 2003 offers enhanced productivity by allowing users to annotate anywhere in Microsoft® Office Word, Excel or PowerPoint® 2003, and send handwritten e-mail in Office Outlook® 2003. OneNote (TM) on the Tablet PC brings together ink, text and Web content in one application.

  • New capabilities enable developers to create powerful productivity applications. Developers can integrate pen and ink in Web-based line-of-business solutions. Companies such as FranklinCovey Co. and Corel Corp. are deeply integrating pen and ink in their applications. This support makes ink as natural to use as text or any other feature.

View full PressRelease: Microsoft Announces the Next Version of the Tablet PC Operating System
View: Q&A: Inside the Next Version of the Tablet PC Operating System