Monthly Archives: June 2006

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Patching Podcast has been uploaded for your listening pleasure

… and if anyone has any issues hearing me while mowing their lawn…just holler….a short 6 minute podcast on security patching news in the SBS world


http://www.acidplanet.com/artist.asp?podcast=1075|2&t=6736


06-025 re-released but unless you are seeing issues.. don’t repatch is the biggie…

Susanne and Community at the Small Biz Symposium

You going to Boston for the World Wide Partner Conference?  If you are make sure you give Susanne Dansey a big HI!

She’ll be in Boston at the Small Business Symposium giving a talk on Community…

  •  How and what the UK & Irish community is

  • Successes so far from the UK & Irish community (impressive growth, case studies from partners)

  • Vendor relationships (with HP, MS, CA etc and how we can lobby them to build better relationships with us)

  • Worldwide successes (video example of Nick Pieters and quotes from partners across the globe about their positive experiences from the community) as well as my view on what works and what doesn’t and why we are a strong network

  • Where to go and how to join (SMB Nation, blogs, forums, events, sbsgroups.com etc)

She’s got a room assigned to her.. but let’s see if we can get her a standing room only for her community talk.. I’ve got Cockroach Community Cards and Buttons heading her way (via Vlad and Chris) so make sure you ask her .. we’ve customized them for a more International Community view but I think you’ll find them very helpful!


(Both the WWPC and the Small Biz Symposium are both sold out… Vlad will be there blogging.. so I’ll be watching his blog for the onsite photos and news.

So that’s what Dana’s been up to…

So Dana Epp already worked on and came out with a ISA tool that really adds a ton of better reporting to my ISA server… but he blogged about what he’s working on next…the answer to my ‘risk’ question from yesterday…he’s working on a two factor plug in for RWW… that looks really cool…

If you are looking at the blog from the web site… I’ve gone to girly pink

…and I need to also disclose how the “SBS Diva” started.. you see I was helping David Coursey out with his SBS 2003 server and in a review he called me the “SBS Diva” and well it just stuck… so since we just added some new blog skins.. I decided to redecorate with a smidge of pink around the place…but… if you CAN see the fact that I changed the blog colors around and that DOES mean you are viewing this on the web.. maybe instead you should be viewing this on a RSS reader instead…


From a Sharepoint web part to RSS Bandit to Newsgator to IE 7 (yeah yeah it’s a beta.. I know …) don’t read this blog from a web browser… get it via the feeds…


P.S.  If you are wondering..the “E-Bitz” comes from a two part nickname as well.. Bitzie because I have short hair.. and “E” because .. well.. I can find just about everything and anything online….

Sydi updates – VERY cool network documentation tools

I’ve used this tool before and it’s really cool.. and I forgot to blog that it’s been updated…check it out!

You can download SYDI-Server 2.0 from the SYDI website:
http://sydi.sourceforge.net

Post on his blog concerning this release: 
http://ogenstad.net/2006/06/26/sydi-server-20-released/
…and Patrick knows me too well…
http://www.zipped.org/misc/stuff.php?vln=52

Service pack 3 for SBA 2006 and BCM

Service Pack 3 for SBA/BCM
This service pack provides the latest updates to Microsoft Office Small 
Business Accounting 2006 and Microsoft Office Outlook 2003 with Business 
Contact Manager Update.

http://support.microsoft.com/?scid=kb;en-us;920115
(and is it just me or is that KB blank?… okay now it’s resolving 
as it should.. must have been sunspots or something)
Okay do I need more dew or what?  Terry pointed out that the 
headline read SBS not SBA…uh sorry about that

Needing more options for patching tools?

So you want to start a patch management process…but you don’t think your micro biz clients will install R2?


Check out this info from Shavlik—- 

Microsoft updated their guidance today concerning support for MBSA and
customers running legacy Operating systems and applications (iow, all
the systems not supported by WSUS). Microsoft posted this guidance on
the MBSA web page http://www.microsoft.com/mbsa

In response to Microsoft’s announcement, Shavlik is offering a free
commandline scanner product to the security community. Shavlik NetChk
Analyzer for Microsoft (SNA) is the latest incarnation of Shavlik’s
agentless hfnetchk scan engine. This scanner is backwards compatible
with MBSACLI.exe /hf – you can drop the new scan engine into your MBSA
scripts without any changes required. The SNA scan engine also adds many
new features that weren’t part of the original MBSA scan engine. (more
information on the new feature set is available here:
http://xml.shavlik.com/SNAReference.pdf)

The SNA for Microsoft engine scans and reports on patch status for
Microsoft Operating Systems and applications, including remote scans of
Office 2000 through Office 2003. The scanner supports an unlimited
number of hosts and will not time out.

In addition, Shavlik is offering a version of the Shavlik NetChk
Analyzer that includes support for non-Microsoft products like Adobe,
Flash, Firefox, and others, as well as support for non-security
Microsoft patches. This version is available for free for one year and
will support scanning 25 clients at a time. Lastly, Shavlik is now
offering a free, one year 10 seat license of Shavlik NetChk Protect that
will perform patch scanning and deployment (and anti-spyware
management).

Additional information about these offerings, including links to
download these products is available here:
http://www.shavlik.com/mbsa.aspx


Regards,

Bob Peterson

To /3 gig or not to /3 gig revisited

The Official SBS Blog : Using the /3GB Switch with SBS 2003:
http://blogs.technet.com/sbs/archive/2006/06/30/439628.aspx

Mark posts the SBSized answer to “do we use the /3 gig or not?” on our SBS boxes.


Okay so now that that religious argument is now on a blog…. now what to we do to entertain ourselves for a Friday?

The real misconception about WGA

Earlier today there was chatter about the impact of WGA.. Windows Genuine Advantage… and how we didn’t like the fact that Microsoft deemed the “piracy patch” as a critical patch, and when it failed, it had security implications because the computer user would disable automatic updates.


Already there’s been a lawsuit filed against WGA.. and folks don’t like it’s ability to phone home.


But what I really don’t like about it is the fact that it breaks the trust of patching.  It’s not a security update… and it’s certainly only critical of a patch to Microsoft.. and the fact that the first ‘drop’ of it was a beta that was not clearly communicated to those of us who got that WGA update just was one of those moments that as a customer of Microsoft you just want to say to someone, somewhere… what WERE you thinking?


As a result… poor Alex is going to bear the brunt of my “What WERE you thinking?” post.


It was deemed ‘critical’ by you so that if someone was running with Automatic updates turned on ..which … hello Microsoft that’s what you tell us to do… they would not have any other choice but to have it automagically installed. 


To whomever was the Product Manager who gave the go-ahead to place this WGA update into the “critical” section, shame on you.  Shame on you for approving a beta patch to be offered up as a critically needed patch.  Shame on you for not informing folks appropriately.  Shame on you for not providing appropriate support mechanisms.


What is the support mechanism you are told to use?  Web email interface.  With a one business day turn around.  Business day. 


Microsoft just remember that as you are building out that live.com stuff that the more you don’t need a specific operating system.. the less we’ll be tied to Windows.  Don’t make your distrust of your own customer so great that we lose trust in you.


The upper “high priority patches” are ..by your own words… to protect your computer against security threats and performance problems… so how is a tool that makes sure that the legally purchased computer that “I” bought a security threat or a performance problem?


Select High-Priority Updates

To help protect your computer against security threats and performance problems, we strongly recommend you install all high-priority updates


Microsoft.. your job one in trustworthy computing is to minimize the need for patches.

Job two is to increase our trust in those that you recommend we install.


You just made the job of those of us who urge people to patch just a little bit harder.


Way to go there guys…


 

Solution Selling online

I think this is the thing that Dave (from the SBSShow) talked about that he really liked….


Microsoft Solution Selling for Partners Online:
https://partner.microsoft.com/40016089


The MS solution selling training… and it looks like it’s only $60 for the training.


Check it out…


When finished, users will be able to:

  • Identify and diagnose customer critical business issues
  • Change a customer’s biased vision of a competitive offering
  • Gain access to decision-making authority
  • Create and demonstrate value at every step of the sales cycle
  • Shorten the sales cycle
  • Close opportunities more effectively and efficiently

Pssst..the site works for me? Do you need your cookie to be US based?