Want Your Staff To Learn About Windows 7 and Server 2008 R2?

September 18, 2009 6 comments

I got an interesting email from a major software publisher the other day.  They develop, sell and support solutions that run on the Windows platform.  Their integration with Microsoft is pretty tight and it’s important for their support staff to know about Windows Server Active Directory. 

The Irish Windows User Group is running a session on Windows Server 2008 R2 Active Directory on September 25th at 09:30GMT.  The presenter is Microsoft Ireland’s Wilbour Craddock.  We’ll be running it as an in-person event but there will also be a live webcast. 

The leader of this company’s EMEA support team asked if it would be OK to set our LiveMeeting webcast on a projector and speakers.  He had a team of 30+ staff that he wanted to attend the session so they could start learning about the new functionality.  He also said he was thinking of getting other support teams in other regions to do the same thing.  What an absolutely brilliant idea!  He asked if this was OK?  Absolutely.  If one person on his site managed the keyboard to ask questions our moderator would read them out to the presenter so they could be answered.  Now this company’s support staff could virtually attend the session without a massive road trip and abandoning the office.

So if you want to do something similar:

  • Set up a PC with LiveMeeting installed on it in a meeting room and tune into the web cast.
  • Set up a projector and decent external speakers for the PC.
  • Assign one person to locally moderate questions and type them into the LiveMeeting client.

It’s a simple and cheap way to start the education process for your staff.

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Microsoft Ireland Windows 7 & Windows Server 2008 R2 Launch Events

September 11, 2009 7 comments

Microsoft Ireland has announced the launch events for Windows 7 and W2008 R2.  Like with the TechDays tour earlier this year, there will be events in Galway, Cork, Belfast and Dublin.  The day is split into two events: a technical session aimed at the business during the afternoon and an event in the evening aimed at using Windows 7 at home.  You have to register for each event if you want to go to both.

Each attendee will receive a free copy of Windows 7 Ultimate.  It’s a legit copy you’ll be able to use.  Seats are limited and demand will be great.  That’s why Microsoft has set up a lottery for the tickets instead of the usual first-come, first-served approach.  Anyone who is already a member of the Windows user Group in Ireland will have gotten a special registration code in their mail in the last few minutes.  That will give them a better chance to get a seat because community members have a reserved allocation of seats.

I’ve been a part of the planning of the events.  I can promise that the focus is demo, demo, demo.  No one will die from allergic shock to PowerPoint.  There is a huge effort to squeeze as much as possible into the events as possible.  The Windows User Group will be trying to follow up these events in the coming months to add more detail and to cover functionality that couldn’t get squeezed into the time available at the launch events.

Here is the communication from Microsoft:

“Join us at the Windows 7 Technical Community Launch and be part of Windows history! Windows 7 is launching all over the world in the coming weeks and Microsoft Ireland are offering IT Professionals and Developers in your area, a chance to see the operating system uncovered.

Click the links below to go the event page, where you can *register your interest.

Windows 7 Technical Community – General Launch Session
Galway 28th September
Cork 30th September
Belfast 13th October
Dublin 15th October

Microsoft @ Home with Windows 7
Galway 28th September
Cork 30th September
Belfast 13th October
Dublin 15th October

*Places allocated on lottery basis one week before each event.”

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Follow Up: 2008 R2 Hyper-V and VMM 2008 R2 Webcast

September 9, 2009 10 comments

Thanks to everyone who tuned in and helped advertise the session that was just run on Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V and System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008 R2.  As promised, it was a quick session.  We focused on the new features. 

For those of you who were not able to make it, you can fine an online recording of the session here.

The presentation is posted here:

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Follow Up From Unattended Installation Webcast

September 2, 2009 9 comments

Thanks to David Gargan for trying to moderate – if only I hadn’t muted my speaker *embarrassed* I couldn’t hear David when he was moderating the question.

As promised, you can find the unattended answer file (autounattend.xml) for a silent installation of Windows 7 Professional here.  Just be sure to stick in a product key and change the regional settings to suit your organisation.

The webcast was recorded and is available here.  It’s around 47 minutes long.

Thanks to you folks who tuned in.  We’ll be back next week (better organised!) with a session on Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V and VMM 2008 R2.

– Aidan.

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Webcast Event: Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V and VMM 2008 R2

August 17, 2009 Comments off

With Windows Server 2008 R2 comes a new version of Hyper-V, Microsoft’s enterprise hypervisor virtualisation solution.  It brings new performance gains, better power management, Cluster Shared Volumes to allow many hosts to run many virtual machines on a single drive and, of course, the much anticipated Live Migration.

With a new version of Hyper-V comes a new version of System Center Virtual Machine Manager (VMM), 2008 R2.  Still in release candidate stage, VMM 2008 R2 takes advantage of the new features in Hyper-V and brings some added improvements.

This quick session will run through the new scalability improvements and features of Hyper-V and VMM 2008 R2.

There’s no charge. All you’ll need to do is install the free Live Meeting client and join us when we start the session. The session URL is: https://www.livemeeting.com/cc/usergroups/join?id=W2008R2Hyper-v&role=attend 

When and Where?

This is an online only event.  It will be on September 9th at 20:00 (8PM) GMT.  That’s 21:00 CET and 15:00 EST.

We expect the session to run for around 45-60 minutes.

About the Speaker

Aidan Finn has been working in IT since 1996.  He has worked as a consultant and administrator for the likes of Amdahl DMR, Fujitsu, Barclays and Hypo Real Estate Bank International where he dealt with large and complex IT infrastructures.  More recently Aidan has been working in the server hosting and outsourcing industry in Ireland where he has focused on server management and virtualisation.  Currently he is working for C Infinity (http://www.cinfinity.ie/), an outsourcing services company in Ireland, where he is the Systems and Infrastructure Manager.  Here he has been working with Hyper-V and Microsoft System Center as part of an advanced server deployment and management infrastructure.  Aidan is the leader of the Windows User Group in Ireland.  Aidan was award an MVP status in 2008 with the Configuration Manager expertise. In 2009 he was re-awarded the MVP status with an expertise in Virtualisation: Systems Management. Aidan is an active blogger (http://joeelway.spaces.live.com/).  When Aidan isn’t at work he’s out and about with camera in hand trying to be a photographer (http://www.aidanfinnphoto.com/).

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Webcast Event: Unattended Installs Of Windows 7 & Server 2008 R2

August 17, 2009 Comments off

The webcast was recorded and is available here.  It’s around 47 minutes long.

With the release of Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 it’s time to consider our deployment options. Whether you’re building a virtual lab environment on your PC or deploying a new desktop build to hundreds of thousands of PC’s, you don’t want to become a “progress bar engineer”. Using an answer file you can run unattended installations to eliminate those questions during an installation. You can also use these answer files to customise more advanced installation offerings from Microsoft.

This quick webcast will go through:

  • Some of the theory behind installing Windows
  • Creating an answer file for an unattended setup
  • A demonstration
  • Advanced deployment options

At the end of the session, you’ll even get a complete unattended answer file for deploying Windows 7.  Everything we show in this session will also be applicable to Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008.

There’s no charge. All you’ll need to do is install the free Live Meeting client and join us when we start the session. The session URL is: https://www.livemeeting.com/cc/usergroups/join?id=KQ28W8&role=attend&pw=d%23Cx2w%5C%23q

When and Where?

This is an online only event.  It will be on September 2nd at 20:00 (8PM) GMT.  That’s 21:00 CET and 15:00 EST.

We expect the session to run for around 45 minutes.

About the Speaker

Aidan Finn has been working in IT since 1996.  He has worked as a consultant and administrator for the likes of Amdahl DMR, Fujitsu, Barclays and Hypo Real Estate Bank International where he dealt with large and complex IT infrastructures.  More recently Aidan has been working in the server hosting and outsourcing industry in Ireland where he has focused on server management and virtualisation.  Currently he is working for C Infinity (http://www.cinfinity.ie/), an outsourcing services company in Ireland, where he is the Systems and Infrastructure Manager.  Here he has been working with Hyper-V and Microsoft System Center as part of an advanced server deployment and management infrastructure.  Aidan is the leader of the Windows User Group in Ireland.  Aidan was award an MVP status in 2008 with the Configuration Manager expertise. In 2009 he was re-awarded the MVP status with an expertise in Virtualisation: Systems Management. Aidan is an active blogger (http://joeelway.spaces.live.com/).  When Aidan isn’t at work he’s out and about with camera in hand trying to be a photographer (http://www.aidanfinnphoto.com/).

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Jeremy Moskowitz Live Webinar

July 14, 2009 8 comments

Jeremy is a GPO and Active Directory guru, trainer and author.  He’s doing a live webcast on July 21st at 2.30 PM EST.

“You work hard. Too hard. Is there a way to leverage your existing investment in Active Directory and Group Policy to do the hard jobs so you don’t have to? In this free, concise webinar, Group Policy MVP Jeremy Moskowitz, founder of GPanswers.com, will show you that it doesn’t have to be hard to do the "tough stuff."

In this webinar, we’ll focus on something you do every day: software deployment and management (and how it doesn’t always have to be a chore). Learn what’s new in Windows 7 to help put even tighter controls on your applications and see how you can put processes around the deployment and management of applications like never before. At the end of the webinar, Jeremy will open up the webinar for questions and answers.

This webinar is sponsored by Specops Software.

It’s gonna be fun; so, hope to see you there”.

You need to register for this online event.

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