Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Windows Server 2012 I hate your start button ...

Windows Server 2012 I hate your start button but I love your virtualization capabilities. I'm hoping my organization will be able to take advantage of your increased number of remote desktop connections, from the current OS we are using. I'm also totally stoked to use your virtualization failover services although I doubt my management will allow me to do that except for Sunday morning at 4am.

I tried [windowskey]+r and I did not get a run prompt, that better have been a fluke. There is no reason to take away my shortcut keys, it is just going to make more work for me to figure out how to put them back into the image. Edit, I just checked again and it was a fluke, but this lack of a my computer icon on the desktop is really throwing me. Hopefully the RTM has the ability to put a Computer icon and some other customizations that some of us admins have gotten used to, on the desktop. Fortunately all of the run commands such as mmc, services and calc are there, although I see you've taken my beloved charmap away. I see we are also back to a boxy, unasthetically pleasing look as a default, of which I can deal with because that graphic rendering is probably just additional overhead and it harkens back to my favorite OS of all time, Windows 2000.

All in all, I think you and I have a lot of potential Windows Server 2012. As long as you run my code and programs well, which I see no problem with because you are running .net 4.0, I'll be mostly happy. It make take a while to get used to your GUI changes, and I may never like them since I am much more efficient with a my computer desktop icon, but I'm willing to give it a chance if you are.

** UPDATE ** On a windows 8 laptop, I've installed http://www.classicshell.net/ . I'm not sure how keen management will be with having this on production boxes, but if you can sneak it into the default profile the Classic Shell is spectacular.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 Released!

Microsoft has recently released Exchange Server 2013 Preview as well as an Outlook 2013 preview. I cannot go into all the changes in the Exchange Server 2013 Preview release but some of the things you can expect are:
  • Smart Search that learns from your communication and collaboration interactions.
  • Social integration of contact data from multiple sources to provide a single contact view.
  • A new look for Outlook and OWA with A touch aware streamlined UI for OWA and Offline Access in OWA 
  • Improved integration with SharePoint 2013 and Lync 2013
  • Improved E-Discovery searching across Exchange Server 2013, SharePoint 2013, Lync 2013 and Windows File Share
  • A redesigned resilient deployment.
Prerequisites for deploying Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 include:
  1. First join the computer to the appropriate internal Active Directory forest and domain.
  2. Make sure that the functional level of your forest is at least Windows Server 2003, and that the schema master is running Windows Server 2003 with SP1 or later
  3. The full installation option of Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 must be used for all servers running Exchange 2013 Preview server roles or management tools.
  4. You should also uninstall 64-bit version of Microsoft Visual C++ 11 Beta Redistributable.
Please note that Mailbox and Client Access Server (CAS) Roles are the only choices. The transport pipeline in Exchange 2013 Preview is now made up of several different services: the Front End Transport service on Client Access servers, the Hub Transport service on the Mailbox servers, and the Mailbox Transport service on the Mailbox servers.

RPC is no longer a supported direct access protocol. Outlook connectivity uses RPC over HTTPS.

There are also standalone Help Files for Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 Preview, Microsoft Exchange Online Preview, and Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 Preview Hybrid Deployments release as well as a Resource Page that has more information.

You are encouraged to send feedback to Microsoft using the Exchange Server 2013 Feedback option.

More information will be revealed at the upcoming Microsoft Exchange Conference (MEC) in Florida from September 23rd to 26th 2012. I hope to be in attendance at my first MEC.

You can engage in the discussions at the forums. I will be reading and maybe posting there also.

Please note due to the nature of this product information and links can be changed without warning.