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Free Microsoft Exchange 2007 training available

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 22-Aug-2006 22:45

I am not sure when this offer closes (it was in my bookmark since 11 July), so you might want to run and try it now.

You can access two Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 on-line training materials for free:

Clinic 3053: What's New in Microsoft® Exchange Server 2007 Administration (Beta 1)

This online clinic provides a rich multimedia learning experience where you explore the new features and enhancements of Microsoft Exchange Server 2007.

This clinic introduces you to the role-based installation provided by Exchange Server 2007 and describes the various server roles. It presents the major installation requirements for Exchange Server 2007 and describes the features from previous versions of Exchange that are de-emphasized or unsupported in Exchange Server 2007.

This clinic also describes how to administer Exchange Server 2007 by introducing you to the Exchange Management Console and the Exchange Management Shell, which you can use to administer all aspects of the system. It illustrates some common administrative tasks, such as working with recipients and monitoring Exchange.

Finally, this clinic introduces the concepts, key features, and benefits of unified messaging. It describes how to configure unified messaging for an individual user. It explains messaging security, archiving, and regulation compliance features provided by Exchange Server 2007, and describes how you can use these features to benefit your organization.

This clinic is targeted to messaging IT Professionals with experience on Exchange Server 2000 or Exchange Server 2003.

Clinic 3054: Overview of Microsoft® Exchange Server 2007 Architecture (Beta 1)

This online clinic provides a rich multimedia learning experience where you explore the most significant changes in the Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 architecture.

This clinic describes how the most significant changes in the Exchange Server 2007 architecture improve upon earlier versions of the product. It also describes the design goals behind these architectural changes, the infrastructure required to deploy Exchange Server 2007, and the three different Active Directory topologies in which you can install Exchange Server 2007.

This clinic introduces the architecture of the five server roles in Exchange Server 2007 and describes the communication between the server roles. It illustrates message routing and how to interoperate with Exchange Server 2003 routing groups. It also describes different deployment scenarios.

Finally, this clinic introduces the changes made to the Exchange Server 2007 message store. It describes the improvements in performance and user experience that these changes provide. It also illustrates how to configure client infrastructure services in Exchange Server 2007.

This clinic is targeted to messaging IT Professionals with experience on Exchange Server 2000 or Exchange Server 2003.

More Required Tools for Windows Admins: Hamachi

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 22-Aug-2006 18:53

This post is the continuation from a previous entry (Required Tools for Windows Admins). I will talk about a single software today: Hamachi.

This is a completely transparent, UDP-based VPN software that simply works. It's incredible. It took me some time to try it. I wasn't sure it would be a fit for my network, but I have to say I am glad I did. So glad that I actually bought two Premium 1 Year license for our servers, so that it can run the software as a service. all other computers run the free version, which will only work while I am logged in.

The idea is that you can create many different networks, all through a single network adapters. You can password protect your networks and add your own computers, or allow others to join it - great for file sharing, backups, or in my case an easy way to transfer files between my development machine and production.

It's much better than FTP (unsecure) or FTP-SSL (secure, but serves only to put and get files). Hamachi creates a full network, and computers simply join these, like they would on a LAN - even though they may be thousands of kms away, as it is my case.

Having a 10Mbps (down)/2Mbps (up) cable-modem service here also helps a lot. When I copy files to and from, I have the impression I am working on a machine just sitting by my desk!

Hamachi was bought a few weeks ago by LogMeIn, a company that develops another software I use a lot, and which I talked about in my previous post.

Microsoft UK Office movies with Ricky Gervais

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 22-Aug-2006 12:08

These are funny videos. Microsoft UK commissioned Ricky Gervais and "The Office" TV show co-creator Stephen Merchant, to come up with some internal training videos:

Ask MSN Encarta

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 17-Aug-2006 13:29

You probably know that before Wikipedia we had access to MSN Encarta, the on-line version of Microsoft's Encarta encyclopaedia software for Windows PCs.

What some of you don't know is that there is a way to have quick answers to your questions, directly from your Windows Live Messenger (a.k.a. MSN Messenger) window.

How can you do that? Simply add the address to your contact list. Pretty soon it will identify itself as "Encarta Instant Answers". Follow the instructions to setup which Encarta version you rather use (Australia, UK, US) and you are ready.

To ask anything just send the question to this contact as an instant message and you will get a reply. Sometimes the bot will ask if you want to open a link to a map, or image.

That's pretty cool. I wonder if there's a SDK for this kind of "intelligent responder".

Required tools for Windows Admins

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 16-Aug-2006 10:29

I have to maintain a few Windows boxes around here: the Geekzone webserver (which is a co-located dedicated server), our local Windows 2003 server (which runs Microsoft Exchange and Newsgator), a Windows XP Pro desktop and a Windows XP Pro Tablet PC.

Keeping all this running and up-to-date requires some tools for remote access, patch deployment, inventory, etc.

The following are the tools I have on the server, and really work great:

1) Raxco PerfectDisk 7.0 (
Great defrag options, very fast (unless you have a 1TB HDD like one of my drives) and it also defragments Microsoft Exchange Store!

2) LogMeIn IT Reach (
Although I use GoToMyPC ( on my desktop and server at home, LogMeIn offers in addition to remote access a very nice tool for remote administration: LogMeIn IT Reach. You have complete control of your Windows Server (or any other Windows flavour) with full security. A nice web-based user interface, plus remote access, guest control, and full management capabilities:

3) Sitekeeper (
Complete automated software management is what you get with Sitekeeper. It does what the Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer does (for software only), plus software inventory, patch deployment (to local and remote machines on a network), license compliance management and more:

I have not touched some backup software, but this will be in another post.

What tools are you using to maintain your Windows servers and network? Post your recommendations in the comments below (but if you're the developer please let us know, full disclosure please!)

Update your Intel Centrino based laptops and tablet PCs now

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 15-Aug-2006 09:15

Oh well, Intel has notified everyone through a page on their site of some vulnerabilities found on their Centrino wireless chipset. The full disclouse is here.

The flaw affects mobile computers based on Intel Centrino platform, including laptops and tablet PCs (such as my Toshiba M205).

Affected products include those with Intel PRO/Wireless 2200BG Network Connection and Intel PRO/Wireless 2915ABG Network Connection

The download is about 60MB and you can update the drivers quickly.

Update your Windows System now, or use Automatic Update

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 9-Aug-2006 10:34

It is the second Tuesday of the month (Wednesday here in New Zealand) and Microsoft has released a load of patches for systems running Windows XP, Windows Server and Microsoft Office.

More details are available in the Microsoft Security Bulletin Summary August 2006.

In one of my servers (running Microsoft SQL 2000 and Microsoft Exchange 2003 SP2) the updates completed and did not require a reboot.

You should visit the Windows Update site now, or use Automatic Update.

Update your laptops if you have USB 2.0 devices

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 2-Aug-2006 10:05

This is just in! Microsoft has released a patch for laptops running Windows XP Service Pack 2 to fix a problem with short battery life when a USB 2.0 device is used.

I am applying this now. May not be the case, but I am a bit sick of the 2.5 hours battery life on my Toshiba M205 Tablet PC.

The patch is available here.

Good luck.

New Zealand in the map: Windows Live Local

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 1-Aug-2006 16:00

There are quite a few map sites for New Zealand, if you are interested... A few here (probably not a complete list):


While not New Zealand only, Google Maps also lists Godzone's addresses and maps. And I don't know if I should count smaps and zoomin as separate things, since both come from the same roots, at

Of those, I like Zoomin better because I can use it to insert a map snippet into a blog post (see our entry with venue directions for Geekzone 2006).

There is even a PDA-friendly New Zealand map, available on This is so far the only PDA-friendly site here. Wises used to work on Pocket PCs, but they've changed something there and it's now broken.

But the big news is that Microsoft's Windows Live Local has been updated, and now the service includes New Zealand. But not only this, it also provide driving directions. While not the first one to offer this service (Wises does it as well), it's the first one to use AJAX technologies to do so, and also throwing satellite images for a kick (although not yet at street level).

Below is a screen capture of driving directions and sample map:

And below is a map:

UPDATE: Oh, I found a problem: where the instructions say (3) turn right (South), you can't actually do it, because the ramp is only going North and there's no way to turn right. No access at all. Hmmm. Bugger that. If we turn left instead it will be another 2.5 Km before a return is possible. More work to do here, Microsoft Live team. Better get an updated set of map data.

I have a few Windows Live QnA Beta invites available: ask and you shall receive

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 28-Jul-2006 17:11

As the subject says, I have a few Windows Live QnA Beta invites available.

This new Microsoft service allows you to ask questions and have other members of the community to answer those.

How do you know the answers are good? The community can vote for answers and people get points. People with more points are more "trusted" and more likely to provide a good answer. Interesting community system.

If you want an invite, please post in the comments with your MSN Passort e-mail (the service only works with Passport accounts, so please don't ask if you don't have one).

There is no need to make your e-mail public, don't post it in the comment. I will send an invitation to the e-mail address you use for confirmation.

When my invites finish I will close comments.

freitasm's profile

Mauricio Freitas
New Zealand

I live in New Zealand and my interests include mobile devices, good books, movies and food of course! 

I'm the Geekzone admin. On Geekzone we publish news, reviews and articles on technology topics. The site also has some busy forums. Also worth visiting is TravelTalk NZ, a community for travelers!

Subscribe now to my blog RSS feed or the Geekzone RSS feed.

If you want to contact me, please use this page or email me Note this email is not for technical support. I don't give technical support. You can use our Geekzone Forums for community discussions on technical issues.

Here's is my full disclosure post.

A couple of blog posts you should read:

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