A critical PDC for Microsoft

I’m in Los Angeles for Microsoft’s Professional Developer’s Conference – one that has a strangely subdued build-up. I have been to many PDCs but this one is different. One thing I’ve noticed is that a combination of the difficult economy and a rumoured shortfall in attendance has resulted in some obvious slimming-down: flimsy bag, no

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Xobni makes its point on the streets of LA

I’m in Los Angeles just before Microsoft’s Professional Developers conference, where one of the themes will be Office 2010 and its new features. Yesterday though the streets near the conference centre were full of “ambassadors” for Xobni, handing out T-shirts to attendees going to pre-conference events and promising a chance of cash prizes if you

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Have Windows OEM vendors learnt anything from Apple?

I’ve just set up a new consumer Windows 7 PC – it was HP’s Compaq Presario CQ5231UK, not bad value at £399 (VAT included) with Core 2 Duo E7500 (2.93 Ghz), 3GB RAM, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit – yes, 64-bit Windows really is mainstream now – 500GB hard drive and NVIDIA G210 graphics.

For

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Google’s new language: Go

Google has a new language. The language is called Go, though issue 9 on the bug tracker is from the inventor of another language called Go and asks for a name change. Co-inventor Rob Pike says [PDF] that Google’s Go is a response to the problem of long build times and uncontrolled dependencies; fast compilation

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Surveys are useless

I’m at Microsoft Tech-Ed in Berlin where 7000-odd IT admins and developers (though more admins) are looking at Microsoft technology.

I was browsing round the stands in the Technical Learning Centre here when I came to one where the technical documentation team at Microsoft was handing out a survey. Fill in the survey, get a

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Love and hate for Microsoft Small Business Server

I’ve just completed a migration from Small Business Server 2003 to 2008. I’ve worked on and off with SBS since version 4.0, and have mixed feelings about the product. It has always been great value, but massive complexity lurks not far beneath its simple wizards.

The difficulty of migration is probably its worst feature:

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Migrating to Hyper-V 2008 R2

I have a test setup in my office which runs mostly on Hyper-V. It is a kind of home-brew small  business server, with Exchange, ISA and SharePoint all running on separate VMs. I’ve followed Microsoft’s advice and kept Active Directory on a separate physical server. Until today, Hyper-V itself was running on Server 2008.

I’m

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Sophos Windows 7 anti-virus test tells us nothing we don’t already know

Sophos is getting good publicity for its latest sales pitch virus test on Windows 7. This tells us:

We grabbed the next 10 unique samples that arrived in the SophosLabs feed to see how well the newer, more secure version of Windows and UAC held up. Unfortunately, despite Microsoft’s claims, Windows 7 disappointed just like

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The cloud in education: Google Apps vs Live@Edu

I’ve been researching the use of cloud apps in education for a talk I am giving next week. I’m normally more business-focused, and it’s been interesting to uncover another area where Microsoft and Google are in hot competition. Both companies are happy to give educational institutions free cloud email and collaboration services; and the offer

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Ubuntu Linux: the agony and the ecstasy

Just after writing a positive review of Ubuntu Karmic Koala I noticed this piece on The Register: Early adopters bloodied by Ubuntu’s Karmic Koala:

Blank and flickering screens, failure to recognize hard drives, defaulting to the old 2.6.28 Linux kernel, and failure to get encryption running are taking their toll, as early adopters turn to

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