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Archive for November, 2009

Forefront Threat Management Gateway 2010 RTM’s

Posted by Christian Dam on November 17, 2009

The Forefront TMG team has announced they have submitted the final bits to RTM. Well done!

More information here:


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SharePoint 2010 Installation instructions and a warning

Posted by Christian Dam on November 16, 2009

Jie Li posted some good installation instructions here that describe how to get the new bits installed. Note the warning saying that this version is not supported and that you cannot upgrade to RTM from this version.

At this point it is not clear to me what this exactly means. During the CTP phase the question about a supported upgrade path was discussed, but as far as I remember (I haven’t checked for a new status in a while) the intention/hope was that it would be the same as was the case for MOSS: that content database migration would be supported from Beta 2 and forward. Now, I have my doubts but I am sure we will get more enlightened in the coming days.


According to Jie Li’s comments upgrading from this beta to RTM is indeed not supported, not even a content database migration. Bad news, indeed!

From the comments:
If you are exporting/importing content that means you are “migrating”. It would be fine. However attach a beta content database to RTM will not work.

There’s no public RC plan that I’m aware of.

In past experience with 2007 beta – rtm upgrade, a lot of issues were caused by the beta content. there’s garbage remaining even after SP2. It is still a good time to trial your code and deployment, just don’t use beta in production envoriment.

Posted in Office 2010, SharePoint 2010 | Comments Off on SharePoint 2010 Installation instructions and a warning

Office 2010 client and server bits available on TechNet!

Posted by Christian Dam on November 16, 2009

This is it, guys! The bits are available on TechNet:

  • Office SharePoint Foundation Server 2010 Beta (formerly WSS)
  • Office SharePoint Server 2010 Beta
  • Office Business Contant Manager 2010 Beta
  • FAST Search Server SharePoint 2010 Beta
  • Office Professional Plus 2010 Beta
  • Office Project Server 2010 Beta
  • Office Project Professional 2010 Beta
  • Office Search Server Express 2010
  • Office SharePoint Designer 2010 Beta
  • Office Web Applications 2010 Beta
  • Office Visio Premium 2010 Beta

I can’t wait to see what improvements that are implemented compared to Beta 1/CTP!

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TechEd 2009 Day 3

Posted by Christian Dam on November 11, 2009

Today was kind of slow for me regarding sessions. I had only three sessions scheduled together with a participation in a focus group on Implementing and Managing a Web Server Infrastructure.

 The first session was about Social Computing in SharePoint 2010. Based on the feedback from our participation in the SPC2009 I was hoping to be blown away and to see a lot of cool new features – and a lot of features that are not ready to play with in Beta 1. Unfortunately the presenters demo environment was performing extremely poor so quite a lot of the demos wasn’t really useful but the he still managed to get his ideas across. Nothing much new was revealed, though, except for the Organizational Browser. The Organizational Browser is a built-in Silverlight application that present the people in the profile database in a hierarchical manner. This is extremely cool and I can’t wait to play with it and see if it as useful as it looks.

My second session was originally about Search in SharePoint 2010 but I was tempted by an Interactive session called “The Role of the Software Architect: Caring and Communicating”. The session was hosted by Magnus Mårtensson who also wrote the TechNet article of the same name. Even though I am not a Software Architect but an IT architect I figured I could still gain some insights as we can all get better at communicating (and caring, I suppose 😉 ). I wasn’t wrong! It was a great session with a lot of audience participation. It turns out Magnus it a speaker who knows how to capture an audience. First, he changed his shirt from the blue Microsoft Speaker Shirt to a highly flower decorated Hawaii-shirt to demonstrate that in this session we were all learning. Second he opened a big box of Swedish chocolate (Magnus is Swedish as you might have guessed) which he used to bribe people to contribute. Cheap tricks? Maybe – but it worked! A lot of people chipped in, sharing experiences and soon a vivid discussion was talking place. I think the Interactive Session format is brilliant as it is not just one way communication. Further more it tends to be closer to real world scenarios as “real” people get involved in the session. I have been to a couple already and I have a few more lined up in the coming days. However, the physical planning at TechEd this year simply doesn’t do the session justice as all the Interaction Sessions share the same enormous room with only paper-thin walls to separate the session from other conference activities. This is a shame and I hope next year the session will get dedicated rooms as was the case in Barcelona.

My third session was “Secure Endpoints from Emerging Threats Using Business Ready Security from Microsoft Forefront”. By itself it was a good session describing how Forefront Threat Management Gateway and Forefront Client Security can help protecting the end point. It was well presented and the demos ran smoothly for a change. However, it was roughly the same content as some of the other session about Forefront I have seen this year, so I didn’t learn anything new. Oh, wait – hang on. One thing struck me after the session: at TechEd some of the Forefront sessions mentioned some sort of service bus that all the Forefront components use to communicate internally. The deeper meaning being that when one component notices anything suspicious it can alert the other components so they can react appropriately, e.g. start a virus scan on all clients or shut a machine’s port off on a switch. Maybe I have just attended the wrong sessions this year, but I have not seen this mentioned anywhere. I wonder if this functionality have been dropped … or maybe I a, just getting old and imagine things … I don’t know, but I’d better check my notes from last year *making mental note to self*

The last session was suppose to be a focus group session about “Challenges of implementing and managing a Microsoft web infrastructure”. Despite having told Microsoft that I am a SharePoint Admin / IT architect I was accepted into the focus group so I naturally assumed it had something to do with SharePoint. It turned out it didn’t. Luckily for me – and the focus group people – we talked about it before the session, so I could get out in time and not waste anybody’s time. I just hope Microsoft doesn’t have a three-strikes-and-you’re-out-rule, because if they do I am in trouble: I complained about the key-note, I skipped a special Danish event on IIS 7.5 (due to unfortunate planning by Microsoft I claim) and now this 🙂

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TechEd 2009 Day 2 – Part II

Posted by Christian Dam on November 11, 2009

Well, the product demos wasn’t any good as the demo environment didn’t behave very well, so some of the demos didn’t really get the proper points across.

However, my final two sessions of the day really delivered big time! The first session was about Capacity and Performance planning in SharePoint 2010. It was hosted by some of the old-time favorites Todd Klint and Shane Young, and although the session title was slightly misleading it was very good none the less. The title was misleading since Microsoft hasn’t released any performance guidance for SharePoint 2010 yet and Todd and Shane couldn’t really bring any new numbers to the table. So for know, the old guidance numbers should still be used with respect to the database sizes (don’t exceed the 100GB recommendation etc) and the new numbers for supported items in a list doesn’t change that.

What is changing, though, is the numbers of servers and the memory requirements. No new numbers yet, but when I talked to Shane after the session he mentioned a customer with 200-300 customers that is implementing WFE’s with 16GB of memory and 24GB memory for the SQL backup. This is overkill in most scenarios, obviously, what I took away from the session was that definitely more servers are needed to support all the new functionality and those servers should be a lot beefier than before!

My last session was about Claims Based Authentication hosted by David Chappel. Even though the session was a repeat of a session David did at TechEd 2008 it still was very inspiring. It was all about identity management, federation services, CardSpace and Windows Identity Foundation and how these technologies can be implemented to allow for true federation between organisations and applications. Since it was an “old” session, SharePoint 2010 was obviously not mentioned but I reckon this is how the Secure Store service Web Apps are implemented in SharePoint 2010 – can’t wait to try that stuff out 🙂

Two killer sessions but the highlight of the day was still the GIGANTIC schnitzel we enjoyed at dinner! Schnitzel is king!

Posted in TechEd | Comments Off on TechEd 2009 Day 2 – Part II

TechEd 2009 Day 2 – Part I

Posted by Christian Dam on November 10, 2009

Well, today seems to be almost about security for me. I have decided to see five sessions and the four of those are about security.

The first session was an introduction to what Microsoft refers to as Business Ready Security. Business Ready Securiy as all about shifting the perception of security from being blocking, expensive, and limiting to being enabling and value-adding. The point being that if users can securely access the network from anywhere, she will become more effective and productive. Using the right mindset and – obviously products – the infrastructure will become simpler to deploy, easier to manage, and cheaper to use. As an example the ForeFront security suite is part of the Enterprise CAL which roughly cost $225/user and building the same funktionality with third party products will according to the marketing slide cost up to $775, and the Enterprise CAL even includes SharePoint and Exchange!

My second session was about the new Unified Access Gateway – the UAG. There are two egde firewall about to be released (bort are currently in RC0): Forefront Threat Managemet Gateway is the next version of ISA Server 2006 and Unified Access Gateway is the next version of Intelligent Application Gateway 2007 (IAG).

Besides general product improvement, Microsoft is really puching DirectAccess which is a core feature of Windows Server 2008 R2 and supported by TMG and UAG. From the demoes is looks really cool as it enables users to get access to everything from anywhere. It is slightly comploicated to set up since it seems to being relying heavily on IPv6 and certificates, IPv6 internet access is not available in many places, IPv6 to IPv4 translations must be enabled as well.

The third session is about to start. It is a 30 minutes product demo about end-to-end security using the Forefront suite. Should be good fun!

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TechEd 2009 Day 1 – Part II

Posted by Christian Dam on November 9, 2009

Joel and Todd saved the day!

As expected, Joel Olesons session was almost as good as hoped and it definitely saved the day. Joel invited his good friend, Todd Klint, to join him and the co-presented the session. Todd is co-author of the best SharePoint book published in 2009, Inside SharePoint 2007 Administration and is a die-hard SharePoint administrator.

 Together they make a great team and it is obvious that they enjoy talking about this stuff. The session itself was in the Database Track and as purpose to bring SQL DBA’s and SharePoint administrators closer together by bringing some of the pitfalls and challenges out in the light.

I will not go into details about the session itself as I expect Joel will publish the slides at some point. However, as I have recently blogged about, it is commonly perceived as best practices to limit the content databases to 100GB. When talking about how this limit was established, Joel kind of hinted that is was because the backup tapes used by Microsoft IT in those days could only contain 100GB of data and that MSIT had found that restoring backups spanding multiple tapes had proved difficult and often failed 😀

The key note was unfortunately a huge disappointment and we left after 30 minutes as did MANY others as well. It seemed unnecessary to invite three customers on stage to do an interview session of their challenges. It made no sense to me! I was expecting insights and thoughts about the strategy, product announcements and stuff like that. Maybe all that was covered later in the key note and I missed it. I guess I’ll never know.

I am hoping for more quality in tomorrows sessions and with the sessions lined up, I am feeling confident that quality will be delivered!

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TechEd 2009 Day 1 – Part I

Posted by Christian Dam on November 9, 2009

For the first time in years, if not for the first time ever, the TechEd event is being held as one event where IT Pro’s and Developers are participating in the same conference. I am not totally convinced it a good idea as it seems to have a bad influence on the event selection. Very few level 400 events and only a handful or so level 300 events.

On top of that the event is starting Monday at 9AM and not Monday at 2PM which had the unfortunate effect that 5000+ people trying to check in between 8.30 and 9AM. I was naturally on of those 5000+ people so I missed the first 30 minutes of the first session. Luckily it was just a simple SharePoint 2010 overview session which was marketing/demos and it didn’t really reveal anything of interesting besides the presenter ran on a newer version of SharePoint 2010 that looked more stable and more finished than the version I have access to.

Still feeling grumpy from the 40 minutes queuing I decided to skip the following SharePoint 2010 session for IT Pros assuming it would also be marketing/demos and I went for a session called “Useful hacker techniques: Which part of hacker’s knowledge will help you as an IT administrator”. That was an unfortunately selected title to say the least. Although the presenter, a polish girl, had one or two good points, the rest was a complete waste of time. The most embarrassing moment was when she showed that the evil guys could replace a service executable on a server if they 1) had access to the box, and 2) had full permissions on the folder where the executable is located … Geez …

Anyway, the next session is by Joel Oleson, and I know he won’t disappoint 🙂

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