Posts Tagged ‘beta’

Eating your own dog food and drinking your own Champagne

September 21st, 2012

I’m sure some of you have heard this term before “Eating your own dog food” it’s even referenced in this Wikipedia entry, but I think it’s high time someone appropriately draws the distinction of the DIFFERENCE of eating your own dog food and drinking your own champagne, terms often used interchangeably.   Little shared fact. They are ABSOLUTELY NOT THE SAME DAMN THING. Yes I am extremely passionate about this, because it’s misused.

Eating your own dog food

This term has actually seen some of the most widely adopted usage within Microsoft as a corporation, in fact they had a whole section of the business solely for the DogFood servers.   But what does this mean exactly?   Contrary to popular belief, Dogfooding is not “running on your own products”.   It actually consists of taking the Alphas, the Betas, what eventually will become the products that your CUSTOMERS will eventually consume, and getting a large user-base onto these applications in a Production capacity.    Imagine the difference it makes when you have hundreds of thousands of users running on an internal beta of an application.  When things break, well, they get FIXED and FOUND faster. Not only that, but it forces you to write better code, be a better developer, do better QA. Why? Because when things break, it breaks HARD CORE for EVERYBODY.    So what came out of these interests was not only better written, QA’d and run applications, but also harder and more rigorous testing from your own experiences.   Sure you start off small with a pilot group, but then you continue to expand and extend that out to an even larger base.   At the end of the day and a product cycle you have your business running in production on what started in Alpha and grew to release; long before you introduce your first beta customer.   THAT is eating your own dog food.

Drinking your own champagne

Now there are these “cute” folks out there who are all “We drink our own Champagne” because they don’t like the message, the vision associated with dogfooding or dog food in general (Perhaps they hate Dogs, and likely hate cats? Who knows)   But here is the thing about Champagne and drinking your own champagne.    The production process to go about creating dog food takes approximately 5 minutes.  Sure it can take more or less than that, but you can produce consumable, or horrible dog food almost instantly.   Champagne on the other hand involves Harvesting, Pressing, Fermenting, Blending, Fermenting AGAIN, Lees Aging, Riddling, Disgorgement, Dosage, and Re-corking.

While this is not to be a fully in depth technical advisory on the process of actually MAKING champagne the interesting point of the metaphor is, the Aging process alone requires a MINIMUM of 15 months, not to mention all of the other efforts associated with things.   So when you consider what it takes to drink your own champagne you’re looking at a minimum investment all-in of ~5 years minimum.   I’ll tell you, if I had a solution, a technology, a product, and by the time I got around to actually consuming it, it was 5 years in the making; Yea. That is not a differentiator.

Oh but wait, your trite marketing or wacky sales guy is saying “No! Drinking your own champagne means we run our own products” Uh, I better damn well HOPE you have faith in your own BAKED and READY products you’re trying to SELL or POSITION to me, that you fricking run it internally.   So no, I give you no grace period, I give you no safety net.   Those who drink their own champagne better damn WELL run their own products, and that does not infer they are betas or early release or anything; because it’s eating your own dog food which really shows me you’re committed to your product.

Mixing Champagne with your Dog Food

So when you go out there on the road to message and position your latest and great product, or to talk about futures.  I encourage you to understand your metaphors, your analogies and take heart that I expect you to drink your own Champagne and take great pride when you choose to eat your own dog food.   Just because you eat your own dog food, does not mean it is GOOD, but at least it shows me you’re committed to the success of my business and yours.

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Posted in Baltimization, Microsoft, Technology | Comments (1)

Getting your beta on for the holidays! (Exchange and WinMo6.5)

November 25th, 2009

Firstly, let me start out by thanking Krista Wall and Gerry O’Brien of the Microsoft Learning Team for publishing the official Beta Exam Invites!

And with no further adieu, here are the published invites! (Hooray!)

Windows Mobile 6.5 Developer Beta Exam Invite

Exam: 71-580, TS: Windows Mobile® 6.5, Application Development

Registration begins: November 11, 2009 – Beta exam period runs: November 30, 2009– December 21, 2009

Please use the following promotional code when registering for the exam: WEMOD

Windows Mobile 6.5, Configuring Beta Exam Invite

Exam: 71-579, TS: Windows Mobile® 6.5, Configuring

Registration begins: November 11, 2009 – Beta exam period runs: November 19, 2009– December 11, 2009

Please use the following promotional code when registering for the exam: WEMOI

Exchange 2010 Pro beta exam available—Register now!

Exam: 71-663: Pro: Designing and Deploying Messaging Solutions with Microsoft Exchange Server 2010

Registration begins: November 20, 2009 – Beta exam period runs: December 1, 2009– December 21, 2009

Please use the following promotional code when registering for the exam: EPROJ

Well, this is a pretty straight forward breakdown of the exams! If you encounter any of the exams closed (from the codes being over used, be sure to let us know! :))

Good luck, and good testing! (I’m scheduled for the Exchange exam, but my post mortem won’t come until Dec 21st – so too late for the rest of you :))

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Posted in Certification, Education, Exchange, Microsoft | Comments (2)

Sometimes when you are busy.. 71-662: TS: Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, Configuring gets released!

August 25th, 2009

Doh! I was busy yesterday.  Yes I forgot to read BornToLearn for the day.. end result? I missed the Exchange Beta goes public announcement which had links over to the beta blog with Register for Beta Exam 71-662: TS: Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, Configuring – and what this means to you and I.. is that the Beta Code of E14J is no longer available or working!

Who know this exam would be so popular! (Okay, I knew it would, but I still missed the window.. but we’ll see… :) Worst case I’ll pay to take the beta!   Here are the details of the exam.

You are invited to take beta exam 71-662: TS: Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, Configuring. If you pass the beta exam, the exam credit will be added to your transcript and you will not need to take the exam in its released form. The 71-xxx identifier is used for registering for beta versions of MCP exams, when the exam is released in its final form the 70-xxx identifier is used for registration.
By participating in beta exams, you have the opportunity to provide the Microsoft Certification program with feedback about exam content, which is integral to development of exams in their released version. We depend on the contributions of experienced IT professionals and developers as we continually improve exam content and maintain the value of Microsoft certifications.

71-662: TS: Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, Configuring counts as credit towards the following certification(s).

· MCTS: Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, Configuration


Availability

Public Registration begins: August 24, 2009

Beta exam period runs: August 31, 2009– September 14, 2009

Receiving this invitation does not guarantee you a seat in the beta; we recommend that you register immediately. Beta exams have limited availability and are operated under a first-come-first-served basis. Once all beta slots are filled, no additional seats will be offered.

Testing is held at Prometric testing centers worldwide, although this exam may not be available in all countries (see Regional Restrictions). All testing centers will have the capability to offer this exam in its live version.

Regional Restrictions: India, Pakistan, China


Registration Information

You must register at least 24 hours prior to taking the exam.
Please use the following promotional code when registering for the exam: E14J
Receiving this invitation does not guarantee you a seat in the beta; we recommend that you register immediately.

To register in North America, please call:

Prometric: (800) 755-EXAM (800-755-3926)

Outside the U.S./Canada, please contact:

Prometric: http://www.register.prometric.com/ClientInformation.asp


Test Information and Support

You are invited to take this beta exam at no charge.
You will be given four hours to complete the beta exam. Please plan accordingly.
Find exam preparation information: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/exam.aspx?ID=70-662

So, if/when I take this exam, look forward to a nice Post-Mortem to come out of it! And for those of you who got in under the wire, good luck!

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Posted in Certification, Exchange, Microsoft | Comments (0)

Preparing for Exam 70-662 TS: Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, Configuring

August 15th, 2009

Here we are at the dawn of a new era – An era of Exchange 2010! Look what E14 has truly brought us!   I know you’re going to say “70-662 isn’t out yet, 71-622 hasn’t even been released yet!"

And you are solidly and absolutely correct! Infact they’re still looking for SME’s to participate in the beta for this lovely exam to come!

But for the lucky ones who will be taking the reigns of beta-dom under their belt, there are some things you should know in order to prepare for this!   First of all, there is a BRIEF! Yes a brief of what to expect on the beta!    But even moreso, there is reference to the “Preparation Materials”  below discussing classroom training of 10135A: Configuring, Managing and Troubleshooting Microsoft® Exchange Server 2010 (5 Days) which is not available as of today’s date, so keep that in mind!  But on to the full detailed breakdown of what to expect!

Published:    October 27, 2009 (in development)
Language(s):    English, French, German, Japanese, Portuguese (Brazil), Chinese (Simplified)
Audience(s):    IT Professionals
Technology:    Microsoft Exchange Server 2010
Type:    Proctored Exam

Overview:

Audience Profile
The typical candidate is a Messaging Generalist responsible for the maintenance and administration of the Exchange servers in an enterprise environment. Day to day, the candidate typically installs and manages Exchange Server 2010 and manages users, mailboxes, security, servers, and databases by using Exchange Server 2010. The candidate might also monitor and troubleshoot Exchange Server 2010.

Credit Toward Certification
When you pass Exam 70-662: TS: Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, Configuring, you complete the requirements for the following certification(s):
Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS): Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, Configuration
Exam 70-662: TS: Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, Configuring: counts as credit toward the following certification(s):
Microsoft Certified IT Professional (MCITP): Enterprise Messaging Administrator 2010
Note This preparation guide is subject to change at any time without prior notice and at the sole discretion of Microsoft. Microsoft exams might include adaptive testing technology and simulation items. Microsoft does not identify the format in which exams are presented. Please use this preparation guide to prepare for the exam, regardless of its format.

So as we can see the expectation is you will take this exam if you’re fulfilling your role as an administrator or filling out the bulk of your Professional experience in Exchange!

Skills Measured:

This exam measures your ability to accomplish the technical tasks listed below.The percentages indicate the relative weight of each major topic area on the exam.

Installing and Configuring Exchange Servers (15 percent)

  • Prepare the infrastructure for Exchange.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: prepare schema; prepare domain; prepare Active Directory; ensure the domain functionality level is correct; domain controller service packs; Exchange readiness check; coexistence; migration from 2003 or 2007; disable LinkState; Exchange Server Service Pack level; remove unsupported legacy components; configuring DNS to support the Exchange deployment
  • Install Exchange prerequisites.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: install MMC 3.0, Windows PowerShell 2.0; Microsoft .NET 3.5, WinRM 2.0, IIS, Windows roles and features, use ServerManagerCMD, use Exchange prerequisite scripts
  • Install Exchange roles.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: from the command line and the GUI; adding and modifying roles; add server roles to existing Exchange 2003 or 2007 organizations; verify Exchange installation; Security Configuration wizard (SCW); Windows Firewall, including port requirements; installing Exchange Server using standard and custom installation; installing Exchange Server using the command line; provisioning an Exchange Server and delegating server installation; troubleshooting a failed installation; adding Exchange Server roles after an initial installation
  • Create and configure databases.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: set database limits; set retention limits; set role-based access control (RBAC) permissions for database creation; naming conventions; create and use GUI and Windows PowerShell; create and manage public folder databases; set default public folder database; maintenance; mount and dismount databases; create new mailbox databases; configure mailbox database settings; move the mailbox database and transaction log locations; configure public folder database settings; mount and dismount databases
  • Create and configure address lists.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: update legacy address lists; configure offline address lists; publish address lists; filterable properties; creating and configuring e-mail address policies; creating and configuring address lists; creating and configuring offline address books

Configuring Exchange Recipients and Public Folders (14 percent)

  • Create and configure mailboxes.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: deleted items; deleted mailbox; mailbox quota; message size; warning thresholds; move from and to previous Exchange versions; online and offline moves; intra-orgs and cross-orgs; create proxy addresses; create mailboxes; configure client access protocols; configure spam confidence level (SCL) and phishing confidence level (PCL); send as permissions; delegation; forwarding; mailbox permissions; create and configure linked mailboxes
  • Configure RBAC.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: create and assign RBAC roles; define RBAC scopes; configure RBAC for specific roles, such as help desk and address list administrator
  • Create and configure resource mailboxes and shared mailboxes.

    • This objective may include but is not limited to: equipment; room; permissions; set mailbox calendaring options; autoaccept; custom resource types
  • Create and configure recipients and distribution groups.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: create and modify; security enabled; configure moderation, including Exchange Control Panel (ECP) options; dynamic distribution groups; create proxy addresses; configure mail-enabled users; contacts; send as permissions; forwarding
  • Create and configure public folders.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: mail-enabled public folders; configure public folder permissions; deleted items; message size; item age; public folder size; create public folders in Enterprise Content Management (EMC) and Microsoft Outlook, and OWA; configure public folder permissions; configure public folder limits

Configuring Client Access (15 percent)

  • Configure POP, IMAP, and Microsoft ActiveSync.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: enable, configure, and secure POP and IMAP; manage certificates; configure mobile device policies; autodiscover; authentication; configure the Exchange ActiveSync virtual directory; configure the external name for Exchange ActiveSync; configure client access settings for Exchange ActiveSync, including Windows SharePoint Services and Windows File Share integration; Direct Push; configure Exchange ActiveSync mailbox policies; configure autodiscover for Exchange ActiveSync
  • Configure Outlook Anywhere and RPC Client Access.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: autodiscover; MAPI; create client access arrays; certificates; subject alternative name (SAN); configure virtual directories; enable and configure Outlook Anywhere on the CAS; troubleshoot Outlook Anywhere connectivity
  • Configure federated sharing.

    • This objective may include but is not limited to: certificates; enrollment; DNS; calendar and free/busy; subject alternative name (SAN); assign policies; create and configure a federated trust; create and configure a federated organization identifier; create and configure a sharing relationship; create and configure a sharing policy; assign sharing policies to user accounts
  • Configure Outlook Web Access (OWA).
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: customize the OWA interface; certificates; file share and SharePoint access; public folders; verify multi-browser support; ECP; SAN; configure virtual directories; coexistence scenarios; authentication; configure the external name for OWA; configure client access settings for OWA, including Windows SharePoint Services and Windows File Share integration; segmentation settings; configure OWA mailbox policies

Configuring Message Transport (15 percent)

  • Create and configure transport rules.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: enable and configure; disclaimers; moderated transport; install the Windows Rights Management Services (RMS) pre-licensing agent; configure rights protection by using transport rules
  • Configure hub transport.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: configure transport dumpster; accepted domains; remote domains; authoritative domains; e-mail address policies
  • Configure Edge transport.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: create, configure, and test Edge Sync; configure Edge Transport server cloning; install the Edge Transport server role; configure Edge Transport server settings; configure Edge synchronization
  • Configure message routing.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: internal and external DNS; configure routing based on sites and costs; enable, configure, and secure send and receive connectors; certificates; relay connectors; authentication; message size limits; MTLS; routing group connector for coexistence; configure accepted and remote domains; configure SMTP send and receive connectors; configure message delivery limits; configure TLS security for message delivery

Monitoring and Reporting (13 percent)

  • Monitor databases.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: public folder statistics; mailbox databases statistics; database status; DAG replication
  • Monitor mail flow.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: perform message tracking; DNS; manage message queues; view, retry, and delete; backpressure thresholds; resolve NDRs
  • Monitor connectivity.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: SMTP client to server; SMTP server to server; Outlook RPC/MAPI; Outlook Anywhere; Outlook Exchange Web Services (EWS); POP; IMAP; ActiveSync
  • Generate reports.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: mailbox folder statistics; mailbox statistics; mailflow statistics; formatted list and formatted table; ExBPA
  • Configure logging.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: protocol logging; store logging; configure logging levels; agent logs; message tracking logs; event logs; analysis of logging results

Implementing High Availability and Recovery (15 percent)

  • Create and configure the Database Availability Group (DAG).
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: create and configure DAG; file share witness (FSW); replication latency; configure lag; add or remove database copies; configure failover priority; add or remove server members; configure mailbox database copies; manage continuous replication
  • Perform backup and restore of data.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: recovery database; dialtone restores; deleted mailbox retention; deleted item retention; mailbox merge; disconnected mailbox; backing up Exchange servers; creating a backup schedule
  • Configure public folders for high availability.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: add or remove replicas; schedules; message tracking; back up and restore public folder database and data
  • Configure high availability for non-mailbox servers.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: affinity; DNS round robin; MX records; NLB; configuring high availability for Client Access servers; configuring high availability for Hub Transport servers; configuring high availability for Edge Transport servers
  • Back up and recover server roles.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: hub; CAS IIS; Edge; Edge server clone configuration; setup /recoverserver; setup /recoverCMS; mailbox server; restoring Exchange Servers after server failure; configuring messaging services during a server failure; back up Server roles

Configuring Message Compliance and Security (13 percent)

  • Configure records management.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: custom and default managed folders; retention policy; configure and apply retention policies and retention policy tags; configure managed folders, including default and custom managed folders; configure content settings; configure managed folder mailbox policies
  • Configure compliance.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: configure RMS; configure alternate mailboxes; configure journaling; enable message classification; configure mail tips; auditing; transport rules
  • Configure message integrity.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: S/MIME; MTLS; certificates; RMS federation; transport rules
  • Configure anti-virus and anti-spam.
    • This objective may include but is not limited to: file and process exclusions; transport rules; SCL; PCL; sender ID; safe sender/block sender; Realtime Block List (RBL); Sender Policy Framework (SPF) records; sender reputation list (SRL); configuring anti-spam agents; managing the quarantine mailbox; managing updates for content filters
  • This basically goes on to say that this particular exam is VERY similar to past Exchange exams, so be sure you’re up on that – with specific reference to new technology noted in 2010!
  • Preparation Materials:

    To help you prepare for this exam, Microsoft Learning recommends that you have hands-on experience with the product and that you use the following training resources. These training resources do not necessarily cover all of the topics listed in the "Skills Measured" tab.

    Classroom Training

    Microsoft E-LearningThere is no Microsoft E-Learning training currently available.

    Microsoft Press BooksThere are no Microsoft Press books currently available.

    Practice TestsThere are no practice tests currently available.

    Yea, it’s true – you’re on your own at this point (as of mid-august!) but as things develop and move forward I’m sure we’ll see some real action and traction!

    I don’t know about you, but I will be taking this exam, whether in beta, release or both – and as always you can expect a post-mortem later around it (with the strictest confidence in not releasing anything telling of the exam [My promise to you Liberty ;)]   So look forward to that, and be sure to get yourself involved out there to partake in this with your SME Profile!

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    Posted in Certification, Christopher Kusek, Exchange, Microsoft | Comments (1)

    71-680 Scheduling opens for Win7 Beta Exam! Sign up Today!

    April 27th, 2009

    If you saw my previous post on this subject, the Win7 Beta exam is now available to be scheduled!

    71-680: TS: Windows 7, Configuring counts as credit towards the following certification(s). MCTS: Windows 7, Configuration

    Registration begins: April 27, 2009

    Beta exam period runs: May 5, 2009– May 18, 2009

    Please use the following promotional code when registering for the exam: WIN7J

    Due to the fact that I’ll be on the Bus from the 1st-11th, and at TechEd from the 11th-15th – I’m stuck taking it on the 18th! :)

    So, take this opportunity to sign up for this beta exam, schedule and go take it! Focus more on the ‘schedule and take’ and less on the “where are my formal studying guides” :)

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    Posted in Baltimization, Blog, Certification, Christopher Kusek, Education, Microsoft, Technology, Windows 7 | Comments (0)

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