Month: November 2009

New Windows 7 certifications live (70-685 and 70-686)

At last the Microsoft  Certified Professional page show that I have passed both Windows 7 beta exams, named 71-685 Windows 7 Enterprise Desktop Support Technician and 71-686 Windows 7 Desktop Administration. These exams went live November 20th with the numbers 70-685 and 70-686 and if you have already taken 70-680 i recommend you look into these two new exams.

Previous information telled us that to become a MCITP for Windows 7 one would need to pass not only 70-680 and 70-686 but also an external test from a third party source. Now it seems that this has changed and to become “Enterprise Desktop Administrator 7” all you need is passing 70-680 and 70-686. At least that’s what it says on my transcript and the notes about the third party demand has been pulled from the leaning site. More information about the 70-686 and 70-685 exams!

Office 2010 beta for everyone

Office 2010 beta was just about a couple of hours ago released to the public. Anyone can now download and try the newest Office system from Microsoft. I really like the new features in Outlook 2010 in particular, with the very much improved conversation view which is fantastic. Download and try it yourself today and note before downloading that there are two versions, one for x86 and one for x64.

Download Office Professional Plus 2010 beta

HOW TO: Solve blue screens of death and freeze problems with Windows 7

So participating in the TechNet forums as well as my own forum there seems to be a significant amount of people having problems with Windows 7 going blue screening and freezing on them. Here is a list of troubleshooting:

  • Faulty memory module. Blue screens if not caused by software are likely to be caused by bad memory. It is not unusual that a machine works perfect with Windows XP and then starts behaving badly when upgraded to Windows 7 due to changes in memory management. Use built in Windows Memory Diagnostics (on your Windows 7 machines press F8 before Windows starts to load and choose “Windows Memory Diagnostics”) to troubleshoot the memory modules.
  • Driver. Bad drivers are without doubt the most common cause for blue screens. Therefore update your drivers either by going to Windows Update or the hardware manufacturer’s web site. If no Windows 7 driver exists for the hardware go with the Windows Vista driver as good as all Vista drivers work with Windows 7.
  • BIOS. When having problems with hardware in any way and particularly blue screens I would strongly recommend a BIOS upgrade as that many times improve stability and compatibility. Also resetting the BIOS settings to the default is always a good idea.
  • Bad hard drive. Bad hard drives are sometimes causing blue screens. I recommend using Hitachi’s Drive Fitness Test, which can scan any brand of hard drives for errors. This tool can be found at

Remember that you can always find out the reason for the blue screen by analyzing the memory dump file which is generated when the system crashes. Read the guide for analyzing the dump files yourself.

GUIDE: Troubleshooting and analyzing blue screens of death

Mailbox moved to Exchange 2010

Been home from TechEd for a couple of days and getting back to speed on everything at home. This morning I moved my mailbox to Exchange 2010. The Outlook Web App (previously known as Outlook Web Access) is real slick and now I am just waiting for Office 2010 beta to be released to take full functionality with Exchange 2010 with the new Outlook 2010. Well, the Technical Preview has been out since this summer and although it is promising it contains quite a few bugs and therefore I have reverted to Office 2007 until the beta of 2010 is here. There are a lot of changes coming in the beta compared to the Tech Preview so I hope it will be here soon.

TechEd recap – so far so good!

Halfway through TechEd Europe and so far it has been great! Long days attending sessions and walking around talking to people and long nights with social activities. The sessions I have been to have had high standards and I have not (yet) been to a bad session so far. I finished off yesterday with watching fellow country man Marcus Murray do a session about hack proofing Windows 7, quite interesting and it is always fun to watch Marcus in action. I guess all sessions will be available online some time after the conference and I will get back on that later on. Now a new day with lots of sessions await. So long!

IPv6 – learn it today!

I’ve just watched Mark Minasi doing an interesting presentation on IPv6. He is indeed a great speaker by the way. I’m not going to get into details on what the presentation was all about but instead I’m going to sum it up with a few words. Do not be frightened by IPv6 and do not disable IPv6 on your machines. Instead go on and learn it, today! You will have to learn it sooner or later anyway and the sooner the better I would say :)

What the heck is “the new efficiency”?

Microsoft it talking a lot about something called “the new efficiency” but what in the world does this mean? Basically it means cost savings but at the same time gaining new enhancements and features which helps the end-users becoming more productive, using new products such as Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 R2, Exchange 2010 and Office 2010.

A couple of examples from the ITPRO  view on “the new efficiency” is the fact the Exchange 2010 reduces storage costs to a minimum and cost savings using new power savings feature called core parking in Windows Server 2008 R2.

From the end-user perspective there are for example the new feature called “mailtips” in the mail client (Outlook and Outlook Web app) which beforehand tells us for example if he or she is about to send an email to a user which is out-of-office or, allowing the user to take action based on knowing this information. Another example on how the new products work together on the client side is “DirectAccess”. This feature as you probably already know makes the users constantly connected to the corporate network regardless of where they are in the world as long as they have an internet connection.

Now, enough with the “sales talk”! :)

SharePoint 2010 brings many new features!

First session at TechEd is completed! It was a really interesting session about SharePoint 2010 which seems to be a huge improvement over previous versions of SharePoint and WSS. Everything is made easier and more user friendly but there also seems to improvements on patching SharePoint 2010.

Some of the improvements and changes:

  •  Better browser support (Firefox & IE of course)
  •  Ribbon interface (AJAX) with live formatting of text etc.
  •  Groove is renamed to SharePoint workspace
  •  WSS 4.0 is renamed to SharePoint Foundation 2010
  • Editing of Office documents within the SharePoint interface.
  •  Many many more improvements :)