No Geek Left Behind – Episode 003

Episode 003 gets a touch of class with a brief voice over intro from our favorite UK SMB girl across the pond, Susanne Dansey. (Thanks Susanne!) And after that high point, everthing pretty much goes down hill. ūüėČ

But seriously, 003 is a video tour inside the Microsoft Across America (MSAM) Technology Truck / Bus / RV / whatever you want to call it. I hosted the MSAM truck for an event last fall and took some time in the afternoon to chat up Mike Voorhees, the Technology Specialist onboard.  Mike was kind enough to give us the nickle tour and to endure my stupid jokes about socks in the RV attic and Microsoft BOB. 

And even though the video¬†talks about only¬†Certified and Gold Partners getting the truck, Microsoft Small Business Specialists¬†can get it too (talk to your PAM).¬† Case in point,¬†Jon Been at Beechtree IT Solutions (a Microsoft Small Business Specialist) is hosting the Microsoft Truck in New Albany, Indiana on 14 September 2006.¬† It’s one of the brand new trucks, even bigger than before.¬† I’ll be there too, so come check it out!¬†

On to the video..

Title:  No Geek Left Behind РEpisode 003
Subject:  The Magic Bus (MSAM Truck)
Run time:  16 minutes 48 seconds

Pocket PC version:¬† WMV 22.2 MB (208×160)
Windows version: WMV 29.1 MB (320×240)
Mac version: MOV 36.2 MB (320×240)

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Vista RC1 Drops (Almost)

Windows Vista RC1Windows Vista Release Candidate 1 (RC1) is live!  Proof in Alt-PrtScn format is attached.  (Click for a larger picture).

Title:  Windows Vista 5536-16385 for X86 
Release Date:  8/24/2006 
Size:  2,643.33 MB 
Version:  5536.16385 
Category:  Build 
Milestone Description: 0x45527F10 


(Yep, that’s a 2.6 GB download boys and girls).

Guess it’s time to nuke-and-pave my notebook PC again this weekend.¬†

Let the ceremonial pegging of the download servers begin! 

As Gavin correctly IMed me, this is a ‘PRE-RC1 release’.¬† Thanks for the clarification Gav.¬† I heard this AM via e-mail that it was THE actual RC1,¬†saw the ‘RC1’ in the file name, and promptly jumped the gun. ūüėČ

This afternoon I got the following info from Microsoft via e-mail:

We are pleased to announce the release of Pre-RC1 build 5536.16385! ¬†This build represents significant progress incorporating your Beta 2 and 5472 feedback.”¬†Ah well – still downloading anyway ūüôā

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Interview With A Vladpire

Like any good dev guy, he needs sunglasses to go out in the daylightLast night at the Kentucky Small Business Server User Group meeting we interviewed Vlad Mazek of OwnWebNow / Vladville / SBS Show / Vladfire fame. Vlad is a prominent SEO reseller in the state of Kentucky.

We managed to tear Vlad away from his role as ‘The Unofficial Chuck Norris of the SBS Community‘ long enough to learn about:

If you missed it, don’t worry, we TiVoed it for you:

Title:  KYSBSUG РAugust 2006 Meeting w/ Vlad Mazek
Recording ID:  KYSBSUG200608
Organizer:  Tim Barrett
Recording On:  Wednesday, Aug 23, 2006 3:47 PM (PDT)
Duration :  1:43
URL:  Click here

Special thanks to Susan Bradley for the use of the LiveMeeting account!

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No Geek Left Behind – Now in WMV format

As promised in Episode 1, I’m making the NoGeekLeftBehind video blog available in WMV format for your Windows viewing pleasure.¬† There is a regular Windows WMV version for your Windows Media Player, and a smaller size for Pocket PCs.

Thanks to some new compression tools the file size is smaller too (*WAY* smaller).¬† I chopped the Apple QuickTime version from 48 MB down to 10.5 MB, and it still looks smooth.¬†It’s all in the software kids ūüėȬ† Video links below:

Title: No Geek Left Behind ‚Äď Episode 002
Subject:  September 2006 Microsoft SBS Partner Group Tour
Run time:  4 minutes 41 seconds

NoGeekLeftBehind Video Blog - Now in WMV format! 

Pocket PC version: WMV 5.8 MB (208×160)
Windows version: WMV 7.4 MB (320×240)
Mac version: MOV 10.5 MB (320×240)

Gavin, let me know if that Pocket PC version works on your sweet new Motorola Q phone!


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No Geek Left Behind – Episode 2

No Geek Left Behind РEpisode 2 is born! 
September 2006 Microsoft SBS Partner Group Tour 

As you already know from previous posts on this blog, the FREE tour will hit 13 cities next month.  And our little video gives you a nice visual overview of the locations with a light touch of humor.

No video blog has ever done humor better than RocketBoom 1.0.¬† But in Amanda Congdon’s absence I’ve switched to Sunny in San Diego for my non-technical RB-ish vlog fix.

And for you low-bandwidth / non-QuickTime-havin’ flunkies out there, we do have a version of Episode 2 on YouTube, though it’s doing some funky Kung-Foo lip sync stuff, so I’m not going to post the URL to it just yet.¬† (I may do a VideoEgg embedded video player).¬† Anyway, enjoy!

No Geek Left Behind - Episode 2

Title: No Geek Left Behind ‚Äď Episode 2
Subject:  September 2006 Microsoft SBS Partner Group Tour
Run time:  4 minutes 41 seconds
Screen size:¬† 320×240
File size: 48.2 MB
Format: Quicktime

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September 2006 SBS Tour Registration

SBSers getting their learn onSeveral folks have reported that they had some difficulty registering for the Vista / Office 2007 / SBS 2003 R2 September 2006 SBS Partner Group Tour.

I’m happy to report that the issues have been resolved, and you should be able to register for the event now – sorry for the confusion!

Detailed information for the Louisville, KY / New Albany, IN stop on the tour can be found here:

And here is a complete list of registration links and dates for all cities on the tour (in chronological order):

  1. Seattle / Redmond, WA
    Wednesday, September 06, 2006
  2. Portland, OR
    Monday, September 11, 2006
  3. Sacramento, CA
    Tuesday, September 12, 2006
  4. San Diego, CA
    Wednesday, September 13, 2006
  5. Irvine, CA
    Thursday, September 14, 2006
  6. Louisville, KY / New Albany, IN
    Monday, September 18, 2006
  7. Detroit / Southfield, MI
    Tuesday, September 19, 2006
  8. Indianapolis, IN
    Wednesday, September 20, 2006
  9. Denver / Aurora, CO
    Thursday, September 21, 2006
  10. Boston / Waltham, MA
    Monday, September 25, 2006
  11. New York, NY
    Tuesday, September 26, 2006
  12. Charlotte, NC
    Wednesday, September 27, 2006
  13. Tampa, FL
    Thursday, September 28, 2006
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Microsoft Small Business Specialist logoEarlier this year a friend of mine, Allen Miller, hosted a roundtable meeting in Cincinnati and invited several¬†Microsoft Small Business Specialists from the Cincinnati Networking Professionals’ Association (CiNPA) and Kentucky Small Business Server User Group (KYSBSUG) to attend.

The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the feasibility of creating a technical Q&A website for local small business owners, and to staff that website with local Microsoft Small Business Specialists.  Everyone agreed that this project could provide significant value to the community, and Allen went to work building the site.

So, today I’m happy to report the news is out and the new website is officially live:

Our resident SBSC staffers include:

The current forums are: Announcements, Technical, Business, and Reference Material.¬† Local newspapers and websites have picked up the story, and we expect the forums and members to grow as word spreads through the Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky area.¬† We’ll keep you updated!

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Move Over BlogJet

BlogJet I purchased BlogJet ($39.95) a while back on the recommendation of Chris and Vlad.  I’ve been pretty happy with BlogJet as a blogging tool, but today I downloaded a new (and FREE) blogging tool that I like even better.


Windows Live Writer (Beta)
Download: Writer.msi (4.75MB)

Windows Live Writer (Beta)Windows Live Writer is actually easier to configure for use with my WordPress site than BlogJet.  Unfortunately, it wanted to install the Windows Live Toolbar (I hate toolbars) but it was easy to opt out of that. And cool features like the ‘Insert Windows Live Map’ option are things BlogJet just doesn’t have. 

For a tour of Windows Live Writer, check out their blog with screenshots or download the podcast interview (15 minutes / 14MB) with J.J. Allaire, the architect of Windows Live Writer.

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Get More Customer Action through the Microsoft Action Pack
Presenter: Ron Grattopp
Date:  08/14/2006
Time:  2:00 PM Eastern USA (GMT -5)

TS2 – Build a Successful Managed Services Practice from Scratch – Part 2
Presenters: Ron Grattopp & Erik Simpson
Date:  08/18/2006
Time:  4:00 PM Eastern USA (GMT -5)

What’s New with SBS R2?
Presenters: Mike Iem
Date:  08/29/2006
Time:  12:00 PM Eastern USA (GMT -5)



Hidden Gems of SBS Part 2 – Webparts, IMF, other Gems
Presenters: Ron Grattopp & Tim Barrett
Recorded:  06/28/2006

Hidden Gems of SBS Part 1 – OWA, MOM, OneNote Documentation
Presenters: Ron Grattopp & Tim Barrett
Recorded:  05/24/2006

Crown Jewels of SBS Part 3 – RWW
Presenters:  Ron Grattopp & Chris Rue
Recorded:  04/28/2006

Crown Jewels of SBS Part 2 – Wizards
Presenters:  Ron Grattopp & Chris Rue
Recorded:  04/27/2006

Crown Jewels of SBS Part 1 – Companyweb
Presenters:  Ron Grattopp & Chris Rue
Recorded:  04/26/2006

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Got Juice?

You know, all this modern technology is supposed to save us time and make life more enjoyable.  But it seems like everyday we just get busier in spite of (or possibly because of) technology. And you’ve heard that there are these great SMB podcasts that can keep you up to date so you don’t have to learn everything the hard way and bang your head against the wall.  Still, you don’t have time or desire to learn about iTunes and can’t justify spending the cash on an iPod, right?  Great news!  Don’t need an iPod or iTunes or any of that stuff, thanks to Juice

Here’s all you need:   

  1. A computer   
  2. Windows Media Player (FREE)
  3. Juice (FREE)
  4. The RSS feed of a podcast you’d like to listen to (FREE)   

Juice is a program that lets you to select and download audio files from anywhere on the Internet to your desktop. Once you select a podcast feed or location, Juice will download your audio files automatically at times you specify and have the files waiting for you on your computer.  You can schedule Juice to download your files at night and they’ll be waiting for you in the morning.  Then you can play your podcasts using Windows Media Player (or iTunes) right on your computer.  


  • Juice runs on my PC in the background 
  • My podcasts are downloaded nightly to the folder:
    \My Computer\My Received Podcasts

  • Windows Media Player is set to ‘monitor’ that podcast folder
    (In WMP click Tools \ Options \ Library \ Monitor Folders)

  • When I get to my computer in the morning, the podcasts are already on the PC.    

Juice works with WMP & iTunes so (if you want to) you can synchronize your computer with your MP3 player and take your podcasts with you.  I plug my MP3 player into my PC to charge overnight, and when i hit ‘power’ on the MP3 player in the morning it automatically syncs.  By the time I grab my phone, keys and a bottle of water from the fridge the MP3 player is done and I’m out the door to the gym.   

I’ve had quite a few MP3 players over the years including a Pink iPod once (as Vlad can testify). And I always do a ton of research before I buy a new one.  My current favorite is the 20GB iRiver H10 ($299 MSRP – I got mine from NewEgg for $184).    

The H10 has killer sound, super-fast transfers, great radio reception, it records off of FM or through the built-in mic, and it stores photos and files too.  Right now my iRiver has 6,000 songs plus every Inside SBS, SBS Show, Sky Is Falling & Security Now podcast on it, and it’s not even 1/2 full yet!    

So make the most of that drive time or those server loads, and catch some podcasts to leverage the knowledge of the community (or learn this stuff the hard way – your call).

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