Release of the System Center Configuration Manager Extensions for SCAP

The System Center Configuration Manager Extensions for SCAP are designed for organizations to use with the desired configuration management (DCM) feature in Microsoft® System Center Configuration Manager 2007 to scan the computers in your environment and then document their level of compliance with the Federal Desktop Core Configuration (FDCC) mandate.

The extensions enable Configuration Manager 2007 to consume Security Content Automation Protocol (SCAP) data streams, assess systems for compliance, and generate report results in SCAP format by taking advantage of the compliance checking capabilities inherent in the DCM feature. Now your organization can use its existing Configuration Manager 2007 infrastructure to ensure that the computers you manage meet this federal compliance requirement and generate the requisite FDCC reports for the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

If your organization is affected by the FDCC mandate, these extensions should be very valuable to you.

Note: This solution has now been formally validated by NIST and is recognized as a SCAP validated tool with FDCC scanning capability.

To download these extensions, click here


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Windows 7

Windows 7 Release Candidate

Notice: Downloads will end August 20
Thanks for all your help building Windows 7. We are on our way to the last big milestone: Release to Manufacturing. Starting on October 22, you’ll see it on PCs and store shelves. As we gear up for that, it’s time to wind down the Release Candidate testing program.

If you or a friend needs a download, you’ve got time. We’ll continue to offer the RC download until August 20, 2009. After that, you won’t be able to get the download, but if you have the bits, you can still install the RC and get a key if you need one. (To get a key, just go to the Downloads page and follow the instructions.)

Tell us what you think. If you’re using the Windows 7 Release Candidate, we hope you like what you see. Let us know — go to and tell us what you think. You’ll be able to give feedback on various aspects of the operating system.

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New tool ProcDump

New from the Windows Sysinternals Team

ProcDump is a command-line utility whose primary purpose is monitoring an application for CPU spikes and generating crash dumps during a spike that an administrator or developer can use to determine the cause of the spike. ProcDump also includes hung window monitoring (using the same definition of a window hang that Windows and Task Manager use) and unhandled exception monitoring. It also can serve as a general process dump utility that you can embed in other scripts.

Using ProcDump

usage: procdump [-c CPU usage [-u] [-s seconds] [-n exceeds]] [-h] [-e] [-ma] [-r] [-o] [[<process name or PID> [dump file]] | [-x <image file> <dump file> [arguments]]

c CPU threshold at which to create a dump of the process.

e Write a dump when the process encounters an unhandled exception.

h Write dump if process has a hung window.

ma Write a dump file with all process memory. The defaultdump format includes thread and handle information.

-n Number of dumps to write before exiting.

-o Overwrite an existing dump file.

-r Reflect (clone) the process for the dump to minimize the time the process is suspended (Windows 7 and higher only).

-s Consecutive seconds CPU threshold must be hit before dump is written (default is 10).

-u Treat CPU usage relative to a single core.

-x Launch the specified image with optional arguments.

To just create a dump of a running process, omit the CPU threshold. If you omit the dump file name, it defaults to <processname>.dmp.

get it here


Tools for deploying Windows 7

The Microsoft Assessment and Planning (MAP) Toolkit is a powerful inventory, assessment and reporting tool that can securely assess IT environments for various platform migrations and virtualization without the use of any software agents.


Get it Here


Speaking of great tool kits for planning your operating system deployments, you can now download the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010 Beta 2  MDT 2010 will support deployment of Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 in addition to deployment of Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2003, and Windows XP. For details on the MDT 2010 Beta 2, see the Microsoft Assessment and Planning Toolkit Team Blog

Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010 Beta 2 Review Program

Get ready to deploy Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 with Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010 – Join Beta 2

Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) is the recommended process and toolset for automating desktop and server deployment. MDT provides you with the following benefits:

  • Unified tools and processes required for desktop and server deployment in a common deployment console and collection of guidance. 
  • Reduced deployment time and standardized desktop and server images, along with improved security and ongoing configuration management. 
  • Fully automated zero touch installation deployments by leveraging System Center Configuration Manager 2007 Service Pack 2 beta and Windows deployment tools. For those without a System Center Configuration Manager 2007 infrastructure, MDT leverages Windows deployment tools for lite touch installation deployments.

MDT 2010 will support deployment of Windows® 7 and Windows Server® 2008 R2 in addition to deployment of Windows Vista®, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2003, and Windows XP. New features such as flexible driver management, optimized user interface workflow, and Windows PowerShellTM can simplify deployment and make your job easier. Deploy faster and easier with MDT 2010.
New in MDT 2010 Beta 2
Improvements in MDT 2010 Beta 2 will allow you to:

  • Access deployment shares from anywhere on the network and replicate files and settings across organizational boundaries or sites.
  • Organize and manage drivers, operating systems, applications, packages, and task sequences with an improved UI.
  • Automate UI functionality using the Windows PowerShellTM command line interface.

Get the Download

To download the Beta version of this Solution Accelerator, click here.


Code 7 Contest

Code7 is where your ingenious application meets the opportunity to get millions of eyes on your work, plus a trip to LA for PDC09 and up to $17,777 in cash! This is open to all Windows developers.

I am not a professional software developer. Can I enter?

Yes, absolutely. The Code7 Contest is open to everyone, although it is targeted at developers, whether they are professional, hobbyist, or students.

Show the world what you’re working with and take things up a notch when you code to the power of Windows 7.


Take three minutes to video yourself describing and demonstrating your application idea for Windows 7 and you could win big.

We’ll choose one uber talented finalist from each of the following seven geographic regions:

  • China
  • Europe and United Kingdom
  • India and Southeast Asia
  • Japan, Australia, Antarctica, and New Zealand
  • Middle East and Africa
  • North America
  • South and Central America

As you work, keep in mind our Code7 Contest
Guiding Principles and Windows 7 Technologies:

Guiding Principles:

Your application should support one or more of the following Windows 7 scenarios:

Simplify My Life

Develop an application that makes the things customers do every day faster and easier, with fewer clicks, simpler navigation and easier ways to connect.

More Media, More Places

Design a great application to help customers create, edit, organize and share media.


Make it fun and exciting for customers to get their game on.

Work from Anywhere

Help make customers more productive at home, at work, or on-the-go.

Safeguard Your Work

Help customers protect their data, whether it resides on their PC, USB devices or on a network infrastructure.

Applications for a Better Tomorrow

Use the power of your code to help communities prepare and plan for a better future.

Windows 7 Technologies:

Your entry should take advantage of one or more of the following technologies:


Libraries make it easier for customers to find, work with, and organize files scattered across their PC or network.

Windows Touch

Use the Windows Touch APIs to build an application that introduces a new input method.

Shell Integration

Applications are now more discoverable, informative and interactive.

DirectX 11

Develop applications that utilize DX11 technology that delivers graphics so real, it’s unreal.

Sensor and Location Platform

Windows 7 introduces a platform for using sensor devices, such as light sensors or GPS sensors, to create environmental or location awareness in programs.


To learn more and submit your entry go to here

Free – Outlook 2007 training courses

. Get familiar with Outlook

Up to speed with Outlook 2007
Where to find the commands you use most often. How to use new features such as the To-Do Bar and the new calendar navigation

Interactive guide: Outlook 2003 to Outlook 2007 command reference guide
Use this interactive guide to locate your favorite Outlook 2003 commands in Outlook 2007

2. Communicate more efficiently

Get out of your Inbox with Outlook 2007
Tips for finding and organizing the e-mail that’s already in your Inbox

Create great-looking signatures for your e-mail
How to create a personalized signature so that you can stop typing the same thing over and over at the end of each message

Outlook and RSS: Internet information delivered to your Mailbox
Find out how to read and manage your Really Simple Syndication (RSS) feeds and blogs right from Outlook

Send text messages from Outlook 2007 to a mobile phone
Send text messages or a calendar summary to a mobile phone, right from Outlook

3. Manage your mailbox for size and storage

Manage your mailbox I: Find its size and trim it down
How to find the size of your own mailbox and understand what big means. Find out about tools and shortcuts to reduce bulk

Manage your mailbox II: Understand your choices for storing
The basics about Outlook’s two methods for storing e-mail locally on your computer: Archive and Personal Folders

Manage your mailbox III: Move or copy messages to Personal Folders
The steps you need to follow to create and use a personal folder for e-mail storage

Manage your mailbox IV: Archive old messages
How to tell if AutoArchive is on and how to use custom settings

Manage your mailbox V: Retrieve, back up, or share messages
Advanced techniques for finding and using stored messages. Tools for backing up your .pst files and tips to help you avoid common problems

4. Use your calendar effectively

Calendar I: Outlook calendar basics
Calendar basics such as entering items and setting reminders

Calendar II: See and use multiple calendars
Track multiple schedules at once

Birthdays I: Keep track of birthdays and anniversaries
Two ways for entering special dates in Outlook

Birthdays II: Linking contacts and birthdays
Easy ways to connect contacts and dates

5. Manage your contacts

Create and use your own Electronic Business Card
How to create your own custom business card in Outlook

6. Fight junk e-mail

Reduce spam! Get your Junk E-mail Filter in top condition
How to use the Outlook Junk E-mail Filter to keep spam out of your Inbox

Note   You can also download shorter PowerPoint versions of some Outlook 2007 training courses and use them as training for yourself or a group.

Computer Outlook Interview July 7th- 5:00- 6:00pm PT

Come hear me talk about user groups and the APCUG (The Association of Personal Computer User Groups) annual meeting in Ohio. Listen here at


wants to invite you to its

Annual Meeting

at the Ohio Midwest Regional

in Newark, Ohio

at the Cherry Valley Lodge

The rate is $109 per night and the reservation code is lccs09

August 28th, 29th & 30th, 2009