Training and Certification

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Archive for August, 2009

New book: MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-653): Configuring Windows Small Business Server 2008

Posted by Rubel Khan on August 31, 2009

Our newest Microsoft Press Training Kit — MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-653): Configuring Windows® Small Business Server 2008 (ISBN: 9780735626782) – is now available at fine bookstores everywhere. The book, authored by Small Business Server experts Beatrice Mulzer, Walter Glenn, and Scott Lowe, provides comprehensive preparation for exam 70-653 and the MCTS: Windows Small Business Server 2008, Configuration certification.


The book includes complete coverage of all exam objectives, real-world scenarios, lab exercises, customizable practice tests, and a discount voucher that will save you money when you’re ready to take the exam.

To give you a taste, we’ve included excerpts from the Introduction and two sample chapters:


This training kit is designed for Microsoft Small Business Specialists who want to update
their current certification credentials as well as for consultants to small businesses and
value-added resellers (VARs) who want to add credentials reflecting their experience with
Windows Small Business Server 2008 (Windows SBS) server software. A Small Business
Specialist is a server administrator who has at least three years experience managing
Windows-based servers and infrastructure in an environment of 5 to 75 users in a single
physical location. A Small Business Specialist is responsible for supporting network services
and resources such as messaging, database servers, file and print servers, a firewall, Internet connectivity, an intranet, remote access, and client computers. The Specialist might be responsible for implementing connectivity requirements, for example, connecting branch offices and individual users in remote locations to the small business network and to the Internet.

The Preparation Guide for Exam 70-653 is available on the Microsoft Learning site.

By using this training kit, you learn how to do the following:

■ Deploy hardware and software for servers running Windows SBS 2008.
■ Migrate to Windows SBS 2008.
■ Deploy hardware and software for computers on the network.
■ Maintain systems and services availability.
■ Implement and maintain remote access.
■ Maintain user accounts and computers.
■ Implement and maintain collaboration.
■ Implement and maintain messaging.

Windows SBS 2008 might appear to be quite simple because it was designed with ease of
use for the administrator in mind. When an administrator is familiar with the Windows SBS
Console, managing the Windows Small Business Server network should be straightforward.

What most administrators—especially administrators who have an enterprise
background—overlook is that the Windows SBS Console functions on top of the Windows
Server 2008 operating system and uses most of the Windows Server 2008 native
administrative tools, managed through the Windows SBS wizards. In previous releases of
Windows Small Business Server, often administrators would forgo using the Windows SBS
wizards because, for instance, they were certain that adding a user or group account should be done through the Active Directory Users And Computers console and not through a wizard! In the end, this resulted in user accounts that were only partially functional, with authentication and access problems. The basic knowledge that these administrators were missing was that Windows Small Business Server configures its own organizational units and applies preconfigured Group Policy settings. Using the Windows SBS Console to create the user or group accounts places the newly created accounts in the appropriate organizational unit, therefore minimizing administrative tasks while ensuring consistency.

The caveat here is to use Windows Small Business Server and its tools and wizards as
intended. Only reach for additional tools when necessary—for instance, when you cannot
perform an advanced task through the Windows SBS Console. Read this book, practice the
exercises, and keep this thought in mind as you take Exam 70-653, and you are well on your way to becoming a Small Business Specialist.


Excerpt from Chapter 3:

Joining Client Computers to the Windows Small Business Server Domain

Joining client computers to the Windows Small Business Server 2008 (Windows SBS) domain
is an excellent example of the Windows SBS 2008 philosophy of automating administrative
tasks to the point of miniscule effort. You can join 10, 20, or more client computers to
a domain without first having to create computer accounts in the Active Directory directory service. You can also configure Group Policy, updates, disk quotas, e-mail quotas, and folder redirection with a minimal amount of effort and, better yet, without having to touch each individual native tool or program.

You can use the Windows SBS Connect Computer Wizard (covered in Lesson 2) combined
with several Windows SBS Console tasks (covered in Chapter 2, “Managing Users”), and
voila, your client computers will become Windows SBS 2008 network clients that are
standardized and easily managed. But before you assemble your Windows SBS 2008
network, you must be sure the client computers meet certain prerequisites.

The recommended client operating systems for the Windows SBS 2008 network are the
Windows XP Professional operating system with Service Pack 2 (SP2), the Windows Vista
Business operating system, the Windows Vista Enterprise operating system, and the Windows Vista Ultimate operating system. If your client computers run earlier operating systems such as Microsoft Windows 2000, Windows Millennium edition, Windows 98, Windows 95, Windows Vista Home Basic, or Windows Vista Home Premium, it is important that you upgrade them to one of the recommended operating systems. You can then manage them from the Windows SBS Console, and the recommended operating systems provide additional security features, reliability, and better performance.

You can use the Client Advisor utility in Windows SBS 2008 to scan client computers
that are running one of the recommended operating systems to help determine their
compatibility with the Windows SBS 2008 network prior to joining the computers to the
domain. With this time-saving tool, you can prepare client computers and avoid possible
failures during the domain join process.

When you have established basic network connectivity between the client computers and
the server running Windows SBS 2008, you can join client computers to the Windows SBS
domain by starting the Windows SBS Connect Computer Wizard. The Windows SBS Connect
Computer Wizard joins client computers to the Windows SBS domain, migrates local user
profiles, and configures networking and additional settings as configured by you in the
Windows SBS Console.

This chapter discusses the details of preparing client computers for the Windows SBS 2008
network, migrating user data, and joining client computers to the Windows SBS 2008 domain, as well as configuring the network and client computer settings in the Windows SBS Console. Chapter 2 discusses managing user and computer accounts in greater detail.


Exam objectives in this chapter:

■ Prepare the computer.
■ Join computers to the domain.
■ Migrate local data.


Excerpt from Chapter 6:

Managing Messaging and Collaboration

Messaging and collaboration are two key drivers in technology-buying decisions. The
ability to quickly and easily stay in touch with customers and work seamlessly with other
people in the organization to meet customer needs often raises the need for new technology. In Windows Small Business Server 2008 (Windows SBS) server software, Microsoft takes collaboration to a new level by including both Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 and Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 as a part of the base product. Both Exchange Server 2007 and Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 offer powerful features that take information management outside the corporate boundary by enabling high levels of remote access. Through this ability to access information anywhere anytime, Windows SBS 2008 removes location from the equation. Users can just as easily work at the local coffee shop as they can from their office.

In this chapter, you learn how to manage Exchange Server and SharePoint. You might
realize that you need to work with these two products for some time before you can consider yourself a master. Because Windows Small Business Server exposes only a fraction of the features available in these two products, take time after the exam to explore these two products in great detail; you’ll find that, used appropriately, they can revamp the way you do business.


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Learn Microsoft Dynamics CRM

Posted by Rubel Khan on August 30, 2009

Get started

Sharing and assigning records

Learn to share and assign records to other users. Length: 3:02 minutes View this video…

Converting records

Learn to convert records from one record type to another as part of the sales life cycle. Length: 2:56 minutes View this video…

Create a personal view

Learn to create a personal view using Advanced Find. Length: 2:58 minutes View this video…

Sales overview

Microsoft Dynamics CRM sales functionality can help you track sales. This overview demonstrates how to create a lead, convert the lead into an opportunity, and provide a quote. Length: 12:00 minutes View this video…

Customer service overview

Microsoft Dynamics CRM offers many customer service tools. This video demonstrates how your customer service staff can create and track customer service requests and tasks. Length: 14:54 minutes View this video…

Service scheduling overview

This overview video demonstrates the customer service scheduling capabilities, including types of scheduling and defining services, in Microsoft Dynamics CRM. You will also learn how to use the Help files to find the information you need. Length: 13:55 minutes View this video…

Working with accounts and contacts

This demonstration shows you how to work with Microsoft Dynamics CRM accounts and contacts in Microsoft Office Outlook. Length: 05:30 minutes View this video…

Get data into Microsoft Dynamics CRM

Importing customer data

In this video, you learn how to import your data, and avoid the pitfall of having to spend time on repetitive data entry: 3:09 minutes View this video…

Using duplicate detection

This video guides you through the steps of how to run duplicate detection, and then merge or delete duplicate records. 3 minutes View this video…

Data migration overview

You have multiple options for migrating data into Microsoft Dynamics CRM. The video shows you three of these options, including using wizards to import your information. Length: 10:00 minutes View this video…

Get data out of Microsoft Dynamics CRM

Using Advanced Find

In this video, learn the steps for running queries in Advanced Find, including entering the criteria, or fields, that will help you filter your search. Also, save your Advanced Find search results as a personal view that you can access any time you want. Length: 3:11 minutes View this video…

Create a personal view

This video walks you through the steps for creating a personal view and saving it using Advanced Find. Includes how to set the criteria and how to define which columns are displayed. Length: 3:08 minutes View this video…

Reporting overview

Take a complete tour of using Advanced Find to find information, exporting data to Microsoft Office Excel to analyze it, using default reports, and creating your own reports by using the Report Wizard. Length: 15:39 minutes View this video…

Set up Microsoft Dynamics CRM for your business

Customization overview

Microsoft Dynamics CRM is a customizable solution for your business. This demonstration walks you through how to customize existing entities to fit your operations, and how to create your own entities. Length: 13:00 minutes View this video…

Configuring data duplication settings

Microsoft Dynamics CRM has data duplication functionality to keep unnecessary and redundant information out of the system. This demonstration covers how to configure the data duplication settings for your business as well as how to run duplicate detection jobs. Length: 08:27 minutes View this video…

Set up your staff in Microsoft Dynamics CRM

Working with security roles

This demonstration steps your through maintaining security roles in Microsoft Dynamics CRM. Learn how to create and modify security roles and privileges for your organization. Length: 09:58 minutes View this video…

How to implement territory management

This video walks you through the steps of creating and managing sales territories for your sales team. Length: 10 minutes View this video…


Explore the possibilities

Workflow overview: Implementing a sales process

Using the sales process as an example, this video demonstrates how you can use Microsoft Dynamics CRM workflow tools to generate the activities necessary to complete a process. Length: 25:00 minutes View this video…

Workflow example: Simple trade show lead process

This video demonstrating how to create a simple follow up process that fires when you import trade show leads. Length: 10:30 minutes View this video…

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Office 2010 Tips – Edit Your Pictures with Photo Filters in Office

Posted by Rubel Khan on August 30, 2009

Create eye-catching visual effects in a flash

Throughout Microsoft Office 2010, you’ll find new and popular tools to create high impact visuals to make your work really pop.  And they take just moments to use. 

Pictures speak a thousand words

New picture editing tools in Word , PowerPoint, Outlook and Excel 2010 let you trim and add special picture effects without additional photo-editing software. Use the new tools to change color saturation, brightness and contrast to easily turn a boring document into a work of art.

Step by Step:

1. Insert a picture into Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Outlook or Excel using the Insert tab on the Ribbon.2. Click on your picture and the Picture Tools tab in the Ribbon appears. Click on Format to see all of the editing options available. Or double click on the image to trigger picture editing options right away.

3. Click Artistic Effects to preview more than 20 effects to apply to your photo.


Let your work stand out

Use the new Insert Screenshot feature to quickly and easily capture and incorporate screenshots to complement your work in Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, and even Excel 2010.

Step by Step:

1. Locate the image you want to capture in a screenshot. 

2. Click on the Insert tab on the Ribbon.

3. Click on the Screenshot command in the Illustrations group.

4. Select from the Available Screen Shots displayed, which include any of the other windows you have open (browser window, other documents, and so on).

5. Click on the screenshot. The Picture Tools tab on the Ribbon appears. Select Corrections to sharpen, soften, or change contrast on your screenshot.



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Quick Preview: PowerPoint 2010

Posted by Rubel Khan on August 30, 2009

For PowerPoint 2010, we are making the biggest visual update to Slide Show in nearly a decade. PowerPoint’s graphics engine is completely rebuilt using DirectX. Everything in slide show (text, shapes, animations, and more) is rendered in full 3D using your machine’s graphics card. Over the next few weeks, we’ll show you how to use PowerPoint 2010’s new tools and effects to improve your presentation.

Here are a few of the features you can expect to see:
· Fully hardware-accelerated rendering engine
· New transition effects and an updated user interface
· Revamped animation effects and a brand new UI (timelines!)
· Animation Painter (copy your animations between objects)
· Choreograph animations with multimedia

As we like to say here at PowerPoint, if a picture is worth 1,000 words, then a video is worth at least 24,000 per second:

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Microsoft SharePoint Administration Toolkit

Posted by Rubel Khan on August 30, 2009

The 4th release of the Microsoft SharePoint Administration Toolkit is now available for download and includes improvements in the SharePoint Diagnostics Tool (SPDiag), a new Permissions Reporting Tool, a new bulk Quota processing tool, in addition to the Security Configuration Wizard Manifests.  The Microsoft SharePoint Administration Toolkit is an excellent suite of utilites aimed at the system administrator to assist in both isolating issues, understanding the overall environment they support, and making common administrative tasks more efficient and reliable.

To learn more about improvements about this release see

To download the Microsoft SharePoint Administration Toolkit for x64 environments see

To download the Microsoft SharePoint Administration Toolkit for x86 environments see

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Office 2010 Tips – One Click Quick Steps in Outlook 2010

Posted by Rubel Khan on August 30, 2009

Simple. Efficient. More ways to connect.

Outlook 2010’s new Quick Steps get you through your inbox faster.  Cut down on the number of steps to your common actions and find better ways to respond to your messages, easier and faster. Then explore Contact Cards to connect you to your colleagues instantly through any device—IM, phone, or email.

Tip:  Try out Quick Steps. With this feature, you can cut down common actions to just one click. Send an email to your team with an assigned task, respond to a message with a meeting invite or automatically reply and delete an email.

Step by step:

1. On the Home Ribbon, locate the Quick Steps Chunk to access common tasks. image
2. Create your own Quick Steps by selecting “Create New” from the Quick Steps section of the Ribbon and use the wizard to personalize your Outlook experience. image


Tip:  Bring up Contact Cards to IM, email, or phone without leaving Outlook. See all the key information about that person—job title, office location, photo, and presence information. Bonus: click on the speaker icon to hear your colleague say their name, and avoid embarrassments from mispronouncing.

Step by Step:

1. Hover over a name in the email thread.

2. Pin down the Contact Card with the thumb nail icon to keep the hover view in place, and explore icons to find out all the actions you can take from right within Outlook.


3. Click the email message clip_image008 icon to open a new e-mail to that person.

4. Click the balloon clip_image010 icon  to IM, or the phone clip_image012 icon to call your contact.

5. Click the + icon for more options, including to schedule a meeting.

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Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2

Posted by Rubel Khan on August 28, 2009

We are really excited to announce that Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2 is available for download here. It’s been a long an exciting journey bringing this product to our customers.

The chart below tells it all, we have listened to our customers and have designed the product to meet their needs. This is a robust virtualization platform with live migration built in at no extra charge.

Comparing Hyper-V Server V1 vs. V2

Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2
Physical processor support Up to 4 processors Up to 8 processors
Logical processor support Up to 16 Up to 64
Physical memory support Up to 32 GB Up to 1 TB
Live migration No Yes
High availability No Yes
Management options Hyper-V MMC, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2, System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008/R2 Remote Server Administration Tool (Free), Windows Server 2008 R2, System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008 R2

And don’t forget that Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2 also supports boot from flash for our OEM partners.

Just to recap this release has the following features

(a)    High availability and live migration for managing a dynamic IT infrastructure

(b)    Support for 64 logical processors future proofing our customers to scale up with the hardware

(c)    Support for running up to 384 virtual machines with up to 512 virtual processors

(d)    Processor compatibility mode for live migration across different processor SKU’s from the same vendor

(e)    Hot add/remove virtual storage

(f)     Networking enhancements (VMQ, Chimney, support for Jumbo Frames)

(g)    Simplified management using sconfig

(h)    Boot from flash

Posted in Microsoft Learning | Tagged: | 2 Comments »

Open XML and Office 2007: Available and Upcoming Training and Webcast Schedule

Posted by Rubel Khan on August 28, 2009

Microsoft Press author, and Microsoft Office MVP, Stephanie Krieger, has a series of live webcasts – the first started this week. The training is free and self-paced, offered by Microsoft Office Online.

Here are the links to the Open XML series:

Open XML I: Exploring the Open XML File Formats

Open XML II: Editing documents in the XML

And here’s the series on Office 2007 – introduced in previous post.

Build Your Own Custom Themes – September 15th

Extend the 2007 Office system – September 29th

And here’s the recording of the first held earlier this week: Create Professional Quality Graphics with the 2007 Microsoft Office System (Level 200).

Much of this material builds on concepts and content found in Stephanie’s book Advanced Microsoft® Office Documents 2007 Edition Inside Out.


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Dates Set for Visual Studio 2010 Exam Design

Posted by Rubel Khan on August 28, 2009

October and November will be busy months around here as we start design on the Visual Studio 2010 exams.  These sessions will be a little different than what we did for VS2008 as we are working with our Portfolio Design team on a combined effort using our USD 3.0 processes.

USD stands for Unified Skills Domain and its main purpose is to ensure alignment across the entire portfolio for exams and training.  The sessions create an exam design known as an Object Domain(OD) and a complete portfolio document set, the USD.  The OD goes on to be the guidance for exam writers to create content for the exam and the USD goes on to be guidance for content writers for training.

This is a great mechanism for creating content and exam designs that are in sync and benefit our customers and trainers.  If you are an expert on any of the below topics and are available during the indicated dates, drop me a reply.  We are recruiting for Subject Matter Experts to help in these sessions.  If you are expert in these areas, get in touch.

October 19 to 23

70-511 TS: Microsoft .NET Framework 4, Windows Applications Development (WPF)
70-515 TS: Microsoft .NET Framework 4, Web Applications Development

October 26 to 30

70-513 TS: Microsoft .NET Framework 4, Windows Communication Foundation Development
70-516 TS: Microsoft .NET Framework 4, Accessing Data with ADO.NET

November 2 to 6

70-518 Pro: Designing and Developing Windows Applications Using Microsoft .NET 4
70-519 Pro: Designing and Developing Web Applications Using Microsoft .NET Framework 4


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Windows 7 Certifications/Exams (MCTS & MCITP)

Posted by Rubel Khan on August 27, 2009


Certification Exam Number
MCTS: Windows 7 – Configuration


Exam 70-680
MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Administrator 7


Exam 70-686 (available late 2009)


Hope this is helpful.

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