TechEd 2005 Day 5

Instead of going to a morning session, I participated in an Exchange Focus Group, looking at features and feature names for the upcoming Exchange 12. it was a great chance to provide some feedback. Plus you get a gratuity from Microsoft for participating. You can pick anything from software, like Microsoft office, to wireless keyboards and mice and other things.

The focus group went a bit long, so I worked in the CommNet until lunch, then afterwards attended “MGT410 Advanced Tips and Tricks for Getting the Most Out of Windows Server Update Services”, “DSK215 Longhorn Client Deployment”, and “DSK210R Longhorn Client Security Advancements”. Both Longhorn sessions have me really looking forward to getting my hands on Longhorn Beta 1 when it is released. The changes they have made to deploying the OS with the introduction of the WIM file and other changes will make my life much easier. Having images which can be deployed, independent of the HAL, will halve the number of images I have to maintain!

The security improvements they are making in Longhorn should go a long ways to addressing a lot of the criticism they currently receive about Windows security. Making it possible for users to work in Windows without having to be logged in as an admin all the time is a significant improvement. The key is going to be getting folks to upgrade when Longhorn is available, especially the home user.

The party at Universal Studios was a fun way to spend the evening. I’ve visited Universal Studios in Hollywood several years ago, but never visited the Orlando park. The food was pretty good, at least what they were serving in the restaurants. I heard the buffets out in the street were so-so. Rides were mixed, The Mummy, Shrek in 4D, men in Black Alien Attack, and Terminator 2 3D were all fun. Jaws was OK. Our boat captain had an incredible shrill voice and it was excruciating to listen to him shriek and scream his way through his script. Twister was a waste of time and listening to Bill Paxton go on and on about tornadoes and what an awesome force of nature they are just made it worse.