Well, I picked one heck of a day to start my blog. Today's topic: Microsoft's purchase of DesktopStandard. Now, before we go into the ANALYSIS of what's happened, I encourage you to read this, which does a pretty good job explaining WHAT happened. http://www.networkworld.com/news/2006/100206-ms-desktopstandard.html?page=1 Okay. Now that that's out of the way, let's analyze WHAT we're going to get: The Good -------- - 21 new Client Side Extensions: You want to zap Outlook configuration down? Zaaap. You want to zap shortcuts on the desktop? Zaaap. You want to zap Printer settings? Zaaap. In all, 21 new things to Zap. -GPOVault: This is a "Check-in / Check-out" GP management system which is built right into the GPMC. I like this tool because, well, it's just built right in to the GPMC, which means I don't have to load ANOTHER console to do the dirty work. So, the idea is the Sally creates the GPO, Fred makes sure it's Kosher and Kirk puts it in play. All around a welcome addition. The unknown ----------- -PolicyMaker Registry Extension: This was a great free CSE which could be used to zap down registry changes. Who knows what the status will be of this great free tool. -Share Manager: Another CSE available for purchase which managed shares on servers. Honestly, I don't know if this tool sold well or not. The ugly -------- -PolicyManger Software Update: Imagine WSUS that actually worked with GPOs and that understood Active Directory. Now imagine it dead. Yep, this very cool product will likely not see the light of day as a Microsoft product. Microsoft already has a free patch strategy system, WSUS (again, even though it has no tie ins to AD and very little tie ins to GPOs) and SMS for industrial-strength patch management. This product kind of fit in the middle, and well, now it's dead. Analysis -------- In the end analysis -- it's great. More stuff for GPO admins to know and love. And more power to do what they love to do. Stay tuned for more info as it comes up. You bet I'll be all over this when I have more to share.
Jeremy Moskowitz is a Microsoft Group Policy MVP and founder of GPanswers.com and PolicyPak Software.
Jeremy teaches Group Policy hands-on training to IT administrators who want to make their business more secure by using Group Policy.
He runs GPanswers.com, a forum for Group Policy enthusiasts and also founded PolicyPak Software, an innovative add-on that allows admins to dictate, enforce and remediate application settings. Jeremy is also author of several Group Policy Books, including “Group Policy: Fundamentals, Security, and the Managed Desktop, 2nd Edition”.
He has been seen speaking at Microsoft TechEd, Microsoft MMS, Windows Connections and many others.
Jeremy has performed Windows NT, Active Directory and Group Policy planning, training and implementation for some of the world’s largest organizations.
Jeremy is one of only twelve Microsoft Group Policy MVPs in the world.
Jeremy is available for consultations with your company, speaking at your events, or writing custom publications.
The Definitive Guide to Windows Installer Technology
James I. Conrad, MCSE 2003, Server+, A+, Certified Ethical Hacker.
For years, James Conrad has been a sought-after consultant and trainer for Fortune 500 companies. James has been an exam writer for Microsoft MCSE exams and was a key contributor in determining MCSE exam objectives in the Microsoft Certification and Skills Assessment division.
He has trained and consulted for Intel, UCLA, Raytheon, Compaq, Hewlett-Packard, MCI Worldcom, Sprint, Exxon-Mobil, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, the U.S. Department of Justice, the Bureau of Land Management, and many others.
James writes internal training materials for current Windows products and has authored Windows 2000 Server for Computer Associates, and Windows XP Desktop Administration for the Windows Consulting Group, among others. He has also been a technical editor for many books including The Tips and Tricks Guide to Securing .NET Server by Roberta Bragg and Windows Server 2003 Security: A Technical Reference also by Roberta Bragg. James also wrote the CompTIA Server+ college curriculum for Thomson Learning.
James wrote five Personal Test Center Windows 2000 Professional exam preparation tests for Coriolis. James has also written the popular Windows 2000 Server, Windows 2000 Professional, and CompTIA Network+ certification books for ComputerPrep. James also served as the technical editor for Thomson Learning’s Network+ college curriculum. James is currently the lead instructor for CBT Nuggets, a leading Microsoft, Cisco, and Linux video training source.