Visual Studio

Virtualizing XP applications using Windows 7

Windows 7 has an upgrade to Virtual PC which allows you to run Windows XP applications virtualized on your Windows 7, without having to run the whole desktop running. I still have to use Visual Studio 2003 to support some old good applications including SharePoint 2003 apps. So I have used a Windows XP virtual machine to run it, but now I can fire up Visual Studio 2003 directly from my Start menu in Windows 7.

SharePoint

Open linked Office documents in the application instead of in Internet Explorer

I have several time stumbled upon clients who complain that their hyper linked Office documents (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) opens up in the web browser, Internet Explorer, instead of in their respectively Office application. In SharePoint document libraries these problems are solved using a special JavaScript that fires up the correct application, but today I had a client complaining about this problem when having Office documents linked in a Wiki. So I dug up some information from the Microsoft Knowledge Base on this matter and though I should share it (or at least have it written down for future reference).

Microsoft

What is the Digital Locker?

When using BitLocker or encrypting your file system with EFS on Windows Vista, you will be using certificates and/or passwords. If these certificates or passwords are lost the chance that you loose the information and data on the disks that are protected is very likely. The certificates can of course be backed up on removable media or similar. But storing these kind of crucial information bits on a remote location is of course the best way and you should do that.

Windows XP

Vista Ultimate Language Packs finally released

Finally the Windows Vista Ultimate Extras team released the remaining 19 language packs for Windows Vista Ultimate. The language packs allows Vista Ultimate users to easily switch between different languages in the Vista user interface. The language packs are maybe not the most exciting feature for Windows Vista and I believe that this should not just be an exclusive add-on for high-end users (the ones who buy the, as of today, very expensive Ultimate version) of Vista.

Windows XP

Re-release of Internet Explorer 7

Yes, you heard it right, Sandi Hardmeier (IE MVP) brings us the story that today Microsoft will re-release Internet Explorer 7 for Windows XP. The interesting stuff is that the re-release will not have any Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA) check during installation. My humble guess is that Microsoft is trying to get all non-legal copies of Windows XP to update to the more secure version of Internet Explorer. I have not seen any official words yet on this and it’s not available on Windows Update, but I’ll update this post as soon as I get more news.

Windows XP

Total Commander 7.0 released

My favorite Windows Explorer replacement has finally been released in it’s 7th version. Total Commander, which much remainds of the classic old Norton Commander, is a fast and intuitive file and folder manager by Christian Ghisler. It performs much faster than Explorer and has nice built-in features such as packing (ZIP, RAR…), FTP support, multi-renaming, quick-access to common directories… you name it! Version 7 contains a number of new features and fixes, read more about them in my previous post on the subject or on the Total Commander home page.

Windows XP

Annoying Windows Vista bugs - re-booting is necessary

I have been running Windows Vista for a few months now and I discover new bugs (and features) every other day. Vista does not seem so stable as it should be. It’s no big blue screens or major application crashes but small annoying stuff like not persisting settings and stuff like that. I earlier wrote about changing the start menu power button, this changed setting reverts to it’s original state about every third boot and then goes back to my changed state on the next boot!

Windows XP

Microsoft XPS Essentials Pack 1.0 RTW

Microsoft has released version 1.0 of the XML Paper Specification Essentials Pack. The pack is available for Windows Vista or Windows XP and Windows 2003 Server (both 32 bit and 64 bit versions is available). XPS Essentials Pack contains An XPS viewer called XPS Viewer EP - for reading XPS files An XPS Document writer - for printing to an XPS file Filters for previewing (IPreview) and searching (IFilter) XPS files Windows Shell handlers, for Windows Explorer integration and thumbnails Note: On Windows Vista Internet Explorer will still be the default viewer for XPS files.

Windows XP

Announcing: msfeedicon 1.4

Here comes yet another update to the msfeedicon utility, version 1.4. The msfeedicon utility is a free notification icon for the Windows RSS platform, that comes with Internet Explorer 7. The utility will show whenever one of your feeds have been updated and gives you easy access to view the feed. All this so you do not have to waste space on your screen with the Internet Explorer 7 Feeds task pane or some Windows Vista Sidebar gadget.

Windows XP

Announcing: msfeedicon utility

For a while I have been annoyed that there is no good notification in Internet Explorer 7 when you have unread posts in your subscribed feeds. You have to have the Favorites Center opened to be notified of any feed updates, which may take up useful space on your screen. Therefore I created a small utility that takes advantage of the Windows RSS platform and shows an icon in the system tray which notifies you of any unread feed posts - called msfeedicon.

Windows XP

How to do when having installed Internet Explorer 7 but you need to test on Internet Explorer 6?

Since Internet Explorer 7 is on Windows Update and installed as a high-priority update a lot of users have Internet Explorer 7 installed or you are using the brand new Windows Vista, but how do you do when you are a web application developer and have to test it on Internet Explorer 6. Yes, Internet Explorer 6 will be with us for a long time. You have three options: Have a secondary machine stand by with Internet Explorer 6.

Windows XP

Total Commander 7.0 in beta

My favorite Windows Explorer replacement Total Commander is in beta for version 7.0. Total Commander is a great tool for managing files and folders and totally replaces the Windows Explorer for me since it is so much faster in managing files and folders in just one simple window. Version 7.0 contains mostly a nicer interface but includes some highlights such as: Show the drive names in the tabs Alternating background colors on files and folders Nicer overwrite dialog with thumbnail preview Run as administrator when privileges are insufficient I have been a huge fan of the application since I first discovered it years ago (when it was called Windows Commander).

Microsoft

Microsoft.NET Framework 3.0 released

The Microsoft.NET Framework 3.0, or just .NET 3.0, has been released by Microsoft as well as the Visual Studio 2005 extensions for .NET 3.0 and the .NET 3.0 SDK. The downloads are available for Windows XP, Windows Server 2003 and Windows Vista where applicable. The .NET 3.0 is .NET 2.0 extended with new technologies such as Windows Presentation Foundation, Windows Communication Foundation, Windows Workflow Foundation and Windows CardSpace.

Microsoft

Microsoft XPS Essentials Pack

To view XPS files, if you do not have Windows Vista or Microsoft.NET Framework 3.0, you can download the Microsoft XML Paper Specification Essentials Pack Version 1.0. The download contains an XPS Reader, very much like the Adobe PDF reader and an XPS Document writer, which allow you to print to XPS files. There are other goodies in this pack such as: an XPS IFilter that will help you index XPS files, with Windows Desktop Search for example Windows shell handlers for thumbnail views in Windows Explorer The pack requires Windows 2000, 2003 or XP with the latest service packs and Microsoft Core XML Services 6.

Microsoft

Windows Desktop Search 3.0 RTW

Microsoft has released Windows Desktop Search 3.0 RTW and it’s available for download here (XP x86, other versions are available at Microsoft Download Center). I have been using the beta 2 extensively since the release, and the betas before that. It’s a great desktop search application and integrates incredibly nice with the upcoming Office 2007. Finding e-mails in Outlook 2007, documents on your harddrive or captured images in OneNote 2007 is really easy and fast.

Security

Removing cached NTLM passwords in Internet Explorer

I recently ran into a problem where I had by mistake checked the Remember password checkbox in Internet Explorer 7 (RC) when visiting a NTLM based website, then I wanted to get back to use my currently logged on user to access this website. There is no way to clear these usernames and passwords using the standard ways in Internet Explorer. First of all I tried to turn off the Automatic logon only in Intranet Zone and entering a new but faulty password for the user and checking the remember password checkbox.

SharePoint

Microsoft Office Server System 2007 demo virtual machine

According to Lawrence Liu Microsoft will release a a demo with Microsoft Office Server System 2007 for Virtual Server as a .VMC and a virtual harddisk for Microsoft Certified Partners as a part of the Techinical demonstration toolkit during the next 4-6 weeks. This is great, I guess that it will contain the latest build, and gives us a good opportunity to test and show the new functionlity of MOSS without having to set up new servers or VM’s.

Windows XP

Jensen Harris on Office 2007 Fitt's Law

The incredible Jensen Harris gives you all the details on how to use Fitt’s Law to improve the user interface of your application in the post Giving You Fitts. The article gives you a good insight on how to create a great interface using a mathematical approach instead of just lettting a art/creative director making the job. It explains why the northwest corner (as Jensen told us it should be named) has changed so dramatically.

Windows XP

Optimize Virtual Server hard disks

Here is a tip and some help for you out there who are using Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 R2 for optimizing the hard disk of the virtual machines. First of all make sure that you hard disks are fixed size, that means that they don’t have to expand during runtime. Then take advantage of the Virtual SCSI adapters, when the Virtual Machine Add-Ons are installed on the virtual server you will have a significant performance increase of up to 20 %.

Security

Never set Windows Update to automatic!

Yesterday I wrote about our new server which is now up and running nicely hosting a number of Virtual Server, this morning none of them was up and a few sites and applications was down. This was due to that the server had Windows Update set to Automatic which is recommended by the OS - which had led to that the server rebooted. I’ve seen it before so this time I found the resolution quick, but the last time it caused me a headache!

Microsoft

You need a floppy disk driver when installing Windows Server 2003

Ok, this may not be new to a lot of you or you have never even thought about it - me neither until a few days ago when I was happily unpacking our brand new Dell PowerEdge 2950. I assemled it fast and inserted the Dell OpenManage Server Assistant CD and followed the instructions to install it, this is usually the fastest method and involves so little interaction, everything went fine and it started configuring the RAID and copying files.

Personal

The lack of metadata on pictures in Vista Media Center

Microsoft Windows Vista contains Windows Media Center (in Home Premium and Ultimate) which is a great upate from the Windows XP Media Center Edition. Finally the user interface is taking advantage of widescreen and the navigation is faster and smoother. But I think one big thing is still missing in the Media Center interface - editing, sorting and searching pictures using metadata; today you can sort them on date taken! I would find it more useful to search for all images containg images of my family, my vacation in Spain or winter images from our summer house.

Microsoft

Microsoft Acquires Winternals Software

Winternals Software LP is aquired by Microsoft! Winternal (previously known as NTInternals) is most known by their freeware site Sysinternals a site containing numerous awesome and crucial applications to be used with Windows operating systems such as; RegMon, FileMon, Debug Viewer etc. The aquisition is great for Microsoft as they will get their hands on Mark Russinovich and Bryce Cogswell and their knowledge in how to create small, efficient and safe applications.

Microsoft

Microsoft Ultimate Keyboard

Microsoft Hardware will later this year release a new keyboard - Ultimate Keyboard. The keyboard is a wireless (bluetooth) and ergonomical keyboard with backlight functionality that senses the light in the room and when you use the keyboard. The keyboard are designed for Windows Vista and the Microsoft Live services (Messenger etc). I really like the design and that it is an ergonomical layout of the keys. I use that kind of keyboard at work but at home or when sitting at my laptop my fingers more thatn often slip.

Microsoft Expression

Summary of Q2 2006 Microsoft betas

For me this second quarter of 2006 has been so interesting with all these beta and CTP products from Microsoft. The summer will be a long wait for the Release Candidates and the autumn a huge and shaky wait for the gold products. Here is a short summary of what i think so far; **Microsoft Expression Graphics Designer**An interesting product which I have big hopes for, I really like, and have just adjusted, to the vector way of doing my graphics.

Windows XP

Do not install Outlook 2003 updates if you have Outlook 2007 beta

Just a friendly reminder to all of you that have the Office 2007 beta installed and still have Office 2003 installed: do not install the Office 2003 updates available through Windows Update. I did - stupid me I had the update service on automatic and when turning off the computer I said ok let’s install the patches. After installing the latest patches, Update for Outlook 2003 Junk Email Filter (KB917149) and a few others, I started to receive the following errors in Outlook:

Microsoft

How to read .xps documents

XPS (XML Paper Specification) is an electronic paper format and is competing with Adobes PDF. Since Microsoft is forced to withdraw the function of publishing to PDF from Office 2007 the XPS will be more widely adopted. Read more about it here; Adobe PDF vs Microsoft XPS. Windows Vista will include a XPS reader, but if you already now get XPS files you can download either the WinFX runtime components or the XPS Essentials Pack (beta).

Windows XP

Windows Vista Beta 2 Public download

Bink.nu reports that the public beta of Windows Vista 2 will be available soon. Here are the download links (the links will work shortly): Download here: - (English x86) http://download.windowsvista.com/preview/beta2/en/x86/download.htm- (English x64) http://download.windowsvista.com/preview/beta2/en/x64/download.htm- (German (x86) http://download.windowsvista.com/preview/beta2/de/x86/download.htm- (German (x64) http://download.windowsvista.com/preview/beta2/de/x64/download.htm- (Japanese (x86) http://download.windowsvista.com/preview/beta2/jp/x86/download.htm- (Japanese (x64) http://download.windowsvista.com/preview/beta2/jp/x64/download.htm

Windows XP

Outlook 2007 Instant Search and Windows Desktop Search

I have installed the Office 2007 beta, including Outlook 2007, and I wanted to enable the Instant Search functionality and followed the instructions in the dialog that popped up in Outlook. It said that I had to go and download the Windows Desktop Search Beta 3.0 Engine Preview, read about it in Microsoft Help and Support. I did, but I had a previous version of Windows Desktop Search installed. There was no warning and when I tried to search in Outlook I recieved a message saying that Outlook cannot perform your search.

SharePoint

Public release of Windows Live Gadgets SDK

Microsoft has release the first public release of the Windows Live Gadgets SDK, you can find it MicrosoftGadgets.com. You can also find the Gadgets Development Overview for Microsoft Sidebar for Windows Vista Beta 2 on the site. Developing Gadgets for both live.com and Microsoft Sidebar will be really easy and fun. But I see a problem with only having live.com as the only web-based Gadget host (host meaning where the Gadget can execute).

Windows XP

Windows Vista Beta 2 for MSDN and TechNet subscribers

Microsoft announced at WinHEC 2006 that Windows Vista Beta 2 is available for MSDN and TechNet subscribers. The beta will be more broadly available through the Windows Vista Customer Preview Program in the next few weeks. The timeline is still November 2006 for business and January 2007 for consumers. You can find some more information about the release in this Fact Sheet. Go to the Windows Vista Get Ready site to check if you are ready for Windows Vista.

Microsoft

Microsoft Office 2007 Preview

So, Microsoft Office 2007, applications and servers, are finally here for download at http://www.microsoft.com/office/preview/beta/getthebeta.mspx. Expect some huge downloads; Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services is at 75 MB and the SharePoint Server at 1.000 MB. The Office Suite and programs is a tiny download of 2.049 MB. That would be a massive hive of 3.5” disks :-). I think a lot of bandwidth will be used on the backbones tonight, and this is just a faint hint of what will happen in a few weeks when the new public Vista beta will arrive.

Windows XP

Concerned about the Microsoft Windows Presentation Foundation and the new UI looks

I’m a bit concerned about all the new user interfaces and layouts that will appear when application developers starts taking use of the Windows® Presentation Foundation (formerly code named “Avalon”). This “tecnology” is awesome but it has it’s drawbacks. With the WPF you can create applications that are really neat looking and have high usability, just take a look at Microsoft Expression Interactive Designer. I saw a really nice demo, on a Microsoft Partner event, of a medical journal application looking like a “medical journal” - not the old fashioned MDI interface with a File, Edit… menu.

Microsoft

How to restore (clone) an ADAM instance to another computer

Today I had to move (make an exact copy of) an ADAM (Active Directory In Application Mode) installation to a new server. It was not that trivial and therefore I thought I would share on how to do it. Add the BUILTIN\Administrators group to the Administrators Role in the Adam instance_This group has a well known SID and therefore can be moved to any server. Se picture below._ Make a backup of the Adam data files folder, using Microsoft Backup_The files can not just be copied because they are locked_ Create the exactly same installation on the new server_Use the same ports, service name, application directory partition etc_ Stop the newly created service_So the files won’t be locked_ Restore from the backup you created in 2)Make sure that you specify to overwrite all files, which is not by default Start the service and test it Adding the BUILTIN\Administrators group to the Administrators Role in Adam