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3 CommentsMicrosoft to move graphics outside OS kernel in Windows Vista

December 17th, 2005 by Patrick S

The long and the short of it (the article @ techworld regarind Vistas new gfx idea)

“Microsoft will move the graphics for its next version of Windows outside of the operating system’s kernel to improve reliability, the software giant has told Techworld.

Vista’s graphics subsystem, codenamed Avalon and formally known as the Windows Presentation Foundation, will be pulled out the kernel because many lock-ups are the result of the GUI freezing, Microsoft infrastructure architect Giovanni Marchetti told us exclusively yesterday.

The company has already announced to developers that most drivers, including graphics, will run in user mode – which means that they don’t get access to the privileged kernel mode (or Ring 0). At this level, a process can do anything it likes, including overwriting memory that doesn’t belong to it. The result of such overwriting by (usually) buggy code is often a system crash. So the move should result in greater reliability, because crashing drivers cause some 89 per cent of system crashes in Windows XP, according to Microsoft. When run in user mode, they won’t be able to bring down the entire system.

The shift of the UI into user mode also helps to make the UI hardware independent – and has already allowed Microsoft to release beta code of the UI to provide developers with early experience. IT also helps make it less vulnerable to kernel mode malware that could take the system down or steal data. In broader terms, this makes Windows far more like Linux and Unix – and even the MacOS – where the graphics subsystem is a separate component, rather than being hard-wired into the OS kernel.”

Posted in MS News, Windows Vista | Comments Off on 3 CommentsMicrosoft to move graphics outside OS kernel in Windows Vista

Virtual Server 2005 R2 Enterprise Edition – Available for Beta Participants to Download!

December 15th, 2005 by Patrick Elliott

If you were a beta tester for Virtual Server 2005 SP1– check your email!

Today Microsoft has sent testers instructions for redeeming their FREE copy of Virtual Server 2005 R2 Enterprise Edition — both x86 and x64 versions!

The Enterprise Edition of Virtual Sever 2005 R2 provides the same features as the Standard Edition. Virtual Server 2005 R2 Standard Edition supports machines with up to 4 processors, while Enterprise Edition supports up to 32 processors.

Read the specifications of Virtual Server 2005 R2 here

Offer good only to registered participants of the Microsoft Beta Tester program. Limit one complimentary copy of Virtual Server 2005 R2 per person, original PIN and/or e-mail address. This offer is non-transferable and not available to employees of Microsoft Corporation. This offer expires on March 30, 2006 and is not redeemable for cash.

Check your email!

Patrick Elliott

Posted in Beta News, MS News | 3 Comments »

Upcoming Windows Server2003 R2 Branch Office Chat!

December 15th, 2005 by Patrick Elliott

Live Branch Chat: Administering and Maintaining the Branch Office Technologies

Please join us in this chat with Microsoft’s Branch Office team and learn how to streamline management of replication with Windows Server 2003 R2!

12/16/2005 10:00 AM (Pacific Time / GMT -8)

12/16/2005 11:00 AM (Pacific Time / GMT -8)

This chat will focus on the day to day operations that administrators will go through after the solution is deployed. We will discuss configuration, delegation, determining the state of replication, monitoring and best practices that will help administrators keep branch users happy.

Posted in MS News, Windows Server System | 1 Comment »

MSBLOG to move to Windows Server 2003 R2 RTM soon

December 14th, 2005 by Patrick Elliott

Hello everyone!

Early next week, prior to my departure to the other side of the world (laughs), I’m going to switch the server over to Windows Server 2003 R2 RTM.

MSBLOG is currently running on Windows Server 2003 Standard Edition SP1 on top of Microsoft Virtual Server 2005.

Q. Why make the change?
A. We all worked so hard to test Windows Server 2003 R2, so I thought the blog deserved to be running on it.

Q. What does this mean for the blog?
A. Nothing, except maybe 20-30 mins of downtime during the switch. I will have done all the pre-deployment testing required prior to beginning the physical switchover.

Q. Will the interface, logons, etc. be the same?
A. Yup. I’m migrating the entire blog and AppServ software over to R2. It will simply be running on a new machine.

Q. What happens to the old MSBLOG server?
A. It magically vanishes and frees up lots of RAM for me to test other things on.. It has always been a virtual machine anyway. This time it will be a physical server running Windows Server 2003 R2!

Posted in Computing, Introductions | 6 Comments »

MSBLOG team to visit Dell Laptop Factory

December 14th, 2005 by Patrick Elliott

Patrick Elliott / MSBLOG

It’s in the works folks — looks like two of us from the MSBLOG team will get to visit the Dell Corp. Penang, Malaysia laptop factory:

Dell Penang, Malaysia Factory

I got the idea to visit this factory when I was in Austin, Texas the other week at Dell’s Corporate Headquarters there — and also the home to their desktop manufacturing center. Basically, if you order a Dimension or OptiPlex, its made here in the US. If you order a Latitude or Inspiron, its made at the Malaysia factory.

I just want to know what they do with the systems that maybe work … say 85% of the time? I’ll be happy to take it off their hands…

Going to have to plan this to be on a Friday so that Mr. Gan will be able to come along as well…

Posted in Computing, Daily Life | 6 Comments »

Dec 13: Windows Live Messenger Beta – Released

December 13th, 2005 by Jabez Gan [MVP]

Today, the cat is out of the bag!

You: “Which cat? What Bag?”

The Windows Live Messenger Cat is out of the Microsoft Bag!

You: Cats? Bags? What are you talking about?

I don’t know, it’s an expression, work with me.

You: What if I’m allergic to cats? And have bag-a-phobia?

Seriously, it’s just the expression I’m using to announce that:

Windows Live Messenger Beta has been released to users…

(…Well, some users anyway.)

Windows Live Messenger Beta is now available for use and testing to a limited set of users in the US, UK, Japan, Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Brazil, Korea, Netherlands, and Spain. More and more of you will be invited to join over the coming weeks/months.

Source: MessengerSays

Posted in Windows Live Messenger | 4 Comments »

Tester Gear up for WLM launch this week.

December 13th, 2005 by Patrick S

Testers are receiving their invites for the next version of Microsoft’s consumer instant-messaging service. It’s still unclear whether this version supplants Windows Messenger, but it is certain that it will provide additional VOIP support. Microsoft is expected to make available to testers this week the first beta version of its Windows Live Messenger instant-messaging service. According to a posting on the MSN Messenger enthusiast site, Microsoft will launch the first Windows Live Messenger beta test on Tuesday, December 13.

Read more here…

Posted in Windows Live, Windows Live Messenger | Comments Off on Tester Gear up for WLM launch this week.

Developments In The Microsoft Windows Vista CTP

December 13th, 2005 by Patrick S

Few alittle notes about Vista’s December CTP’s Release….

* The December CTP is not Code Complete.

* The December CTP is not Beta 2

* The December CTP is not a Public Beta

* The December CTP is an almost Code-Complete build. Microsoft has verified that it will be closely followed by an internal
code-complete build, and only then will Beta 2 (in code-complete stage) be released.

* No one knows the Build Number of the December CTP. Yep, not even Paul.

* A CTP is simply an internal build that goes through a series of steps and preps to convert it to a code-complete build.

* Any build can (if MS so pleases) be made into a CTP. It probably does not take too long to convert a build to CTP, relatively speaking.

* If major glitches are found in the build intended to be released as a CTP, Microsoft simply converts a later (or earlier for that matter) build to the CTP. Despit people’s (no names please =P) calims, they do not have the CTP, and nor will they until it is distributed to the Tech Beta testers as the CTP.

* The December CTP will have bugs, it will not have complete upgrading support from XP, nor will it contain Windows Update.

* The sources for all of these claims are documented from official (public and private) discussions with Microsoft officials, unlike many other sources on the net.

Source: Deansweb2004

Posted in Windows Vista | Comments Off on Developments In The Microsoft Windows Vista CTP

TechNet Quarter 3 FY06 Downloadable Documents

December 13th, 2005 by Patrick S

Microsoft have made available a download to TechNet Quarter 3 FY06 Documents. Worth a read…

Download Here

Click Here to see more…
Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in MS News | 1 Comment »

How Microsoft uses Active Directory Federation Services from Windows Server 2003 R2

December 12th, 2005 by Patrick S


This card describes how the Microsoft Corporation Information Technology group (Microsoft IT) uses Microsoft Windows Server 2003 R2 Active Directory Federation Services (ADFS) to provide a single sign-on (SSO) experience for users accessing the cross-domain resources of eCompanyStore, which operates the Microsoft online and physical company stores.

Download HERE

Posted in Windows Server System | Comments Off on How Microsoft uses Active Directory Federation Services from Windows Server 2003 R2

Name speculation for Windows Server Codename Longhorn

December 12th, 2005 by Zack Whittaker

Please note: I, once again, am only speculating. This information is straight out of this crazy head of mine and has not been confirmed in any way, shape, or form. If you wish to link to this entry, please also warn that this information might not even be remotely correct. Thanks! 😀

We already know for a fact, that the next server operating system from Microsoft, dubbed “Windows Server Codename Longhorn” is definately not going to be fully named as anything to do with Vista whatsoever, so we can happily scrap:

Windows Vista Server (it won’t have the ‘clarity’ or ‘clearness’ of Vista)
Windows Server Vista (it’s a server OS, they can’t dubb it after the client)
Windows Longhorn Server (they won’t name it after the codename)
Windows Server Longhorn (the codename again still exists)

However, I’ve been thinking and some possible answers may well be:

Windows Live Server 2007 – after the new wave of Windows Live technologies
Windows Server Live 2007
Windows Server Live – again, after the Windows Live stuff, but with the year.
Windows Live Server
Windows Server 2007 – maybe after the Windows Server 2003 naming style
Windows 2007 Server – maybe after the Windows 2000 Server naming style

I know a lot of those are pretty much the same as each other, but to be honest, a name for a product is very specific, and if two words aren’t the right way round, it could easily be the other way round. Look how Windows 2000 Server evolved into Windows Server 2003 you see… I have a point 😉

Posted in Windows Vista | 3 Comments »

The end of MSN Passport?

December 12th, 2005 by Zack Whittaker

Some information passed to me via email earlier on, suggests that within the first half of 2006, MSN Passport may be completly removed, replacing it a new version of “something” which will handle everyone’s current Passport details. At the moment, it is unconfirmed and cannot be verified yet, but I will certainly keep on top of this and find out as soon as I can.

I think by the time that Windows Live Mail (formerly Hotmail) is released, the new Passport-style-engine will be ready to use, however this is totally unconfirmed. Only a year or so ago, Passport 11 was released of which is at it is now; new interface, new Account Settings, many more options etc.

Posted in Windows Live | 4 Comments »

Now i know the feeling..

December 11th, 2005 by Patrick S

Now I do know the feeling of what it is like to be ripped of!!!

Since R2 was my Microsoft first beta I never realized the feeling…The feeling of being ripped off…After spending tedious hours of pain staking bug testing on Windows server 2003 R2, filing bugs, communicating with R2 Dev’s etc- putting in your heart and soul into a beta that meant so much to you regardless of other commitments…

Then one night you are surfing the net and you see torrents all over the place e.g. Hundreds of Torrent sites. This really makes my blood boil.
I have never been in a beta that has been ripped off before in an act of blatant piracy but now I know the feeling-The feeling that something has generally been stolen from you. Especially only a few days since RTM!

R2 meant a lot to me…I met great people and generally had a good time-I know you may be thinking that I am sad but regardless of what you think, I am pretty sad and annoyed by this sort of activity. But I guess I will have to learn to live with it… The unavoidable threat of piracy-There is plenty more where that came from 🙁

Patrick S

Posted in Daily Life, Windows Server System | 2 Comments »

World Network Speed Record Broken for Third Consecutive Year

December 10th, 2005 by Patrick S

“An international group of scientists and engineers have broken the world network speed record for the third consecutive year. The team consists of physicists, computer scientists, and network engineers from the California Institute of Technology, the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center, Fermilab, CERN, and the University of Michigan, and includes partners at the University of Florida, the Brookhaven National Lab, Vanderbilt University as well as international participants at the University of Manchester and UKLight in the United Kingdom, Rio de Janeiro State University, UERJ and the State Universities of São Paulo, USP and UNESP in Brazil, Kyungpook National University and KISTI in Korea and the KEK Laboratory in Tsukuba, Japan.

The record was broken during the SuperComputing 2005 Bandwidth Challenge at a demonstration that achieved a peak throughput of 151 Gbps and recorded an official mark of 131.6 Gbps which was measured by the Bandwidth Challenge judges on 17 of 22 fiber optic links used by the team. This beat their previous record of 101 Gbps peak by 50 percent. Breaking it down in terms that we can all understand, this would be the equivalent of serving 10,000 MPEG2 HDTV movies simultaneously in real time or transmitting all of the printed material in the Library of Congress in 10 minutes.”

Source: Neowin

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on World Network Speed Record Broken for Third Consecutive Year

Microsoft says some customers may have downloaded the wrong Server 2003 R2 Evaluation software

December 10th, 2005 by Patrick Elliott

From an email sent to all who downloaded the trial of Windows Server 2003 R2:

Thank you for downloading the trial software version of Windows Server 2003 R2. We want to ensure that you are running the Release to Manufacture (RTM) version of the software. As the result of some technical issues on between December 7 and 8, some customers might have downloaded the incorrect version of the trial software.

Click here to see more…

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in MS News, Windows Server System | 4 Comments »

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