Monday, March 30, 2009

The Word of the Day is: Ubuntu


My Dell Mini 9 is on its way and it's coming with Ubuntu Linux pre-installed. And it will stay that way. This is by no means my first foray into the Linux world since I've messed around with multiple distributions dating back to 1994. I've had Arch running as a proxy server to bypass web restrictions on my work PC (Shhhhh). I've run a web server on Mandrake and a file server on Slackware. None of this matters. They were experiments; they were task-centric intellectual games. The key is that this will be my first time using Linux as a primary OS.

What I'm trying to get at is that I'm not a Linux noob, but I am nowhere near a Linux expert or even an upper-level intermediate.
Ubuntu is allegedly the Linux distribution for "normal" people, so I figure if I have severe issues so will Ma and Pa Kettle. I will be documenting my (mis)adventures here to let you know how Ubuntu stacks up to my expectations.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Alanis Morrisette Would be Proud: Part 2

Microsoft's runs on Linux.
Check it out.

Update: I have been informed that Akamai (the 3rd Party web-hosting company) is not actually hosting the content of for Microsoft, merely processing DNS requests, so it's inaccurate to say that "runs on Linux."

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Why we care what Web browser you use. Or, "It's not our fault. Blame the browser developers."

"I don't like Internet Explorer, why can't I use Firefox?"

It's a comment we often hear in the Desktop Admin world. The short answer is, "it's not a good product for business." Now, wait a minute before you go typing up that angry comment, Mr. Fanboy. I know what you're going to say, so let me explain myself.

Desktop Admins are tasked with a variety of duties that all pretty much boil down to one concept; to provide our company's employees with the tools and infrastructure necessary for them to do their jobs while safeguarding company information. That's it. Everything we do is aimed at acheiving that goal. There are some ancillary considerations such as reducing calls to the helpdesk and helping to ensure job productivity (there'll be another post on that topic sometime) but for the most part we want to provide you with a safe, stable product that does what you expect it to do.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Rodeo-Style Cell Phone

Intel is hyping a concept (read: doesn't exist) smartphone that has one major problem. It's the size of a cowboy's wallet. I know people who won't buy an iPhone because it's "just so big." (Easy, there.) Where does Intel think I'm going to carry this, my murse?

Cheesy Promo Video Below:

Friday, March 13, 2009

Alanis Morrisette Would Be Proud

Isn't it ironic? Don't you think?

The Session Builder on works better in Safari than IE 8. Sure, it's Beta and sure, the MMS website isn't REALLY run by Microsoft, but I laughed like one of Heff's girls when I noticed.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

MMS Session Builder is Available

How to Log On and Build Your Personal Session Schedule
  1. Open the MMS 2009 Log on page
  2. Enter the username and password you created during the MMS 2009 Registration Process
  3. Open the Session Scheduler page from the menu bar on the left
  4. Review the labs and sessions at the event
  5. To add a breakout or lab session to your schedule, simply click the circle beside the time and location you wish to attend
  6. You may print out your schedule or export sessions to your Outlook client by clicking on the relevant icon.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Don't watch this.

Courtesy of Information Week
In case you're watching this from a filtered Internet connection, you may not see the streaming video below.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

The Migration Which Shall Not Be Named

or, How to not be Bored at the Birds of a Feather Session.

New Topic
Planning Your Migration from Windows XP to Windows 7
Proposed Abstract
Since many companies will be making the leap from XP to Windows 7, and the documentation and MMS sessions focus on migrating from Vista to Windows 7, how will you go about the change? What about application testing? What are your training plans for users and the helpdesk? Will you generate buzz among the early adopters by letting them volunteer to upgrade first? This is a broad topic that could generate quite a bit of good conversation.

My manager came up with this topic, but this is my write up. We're trying to get some people to suggest it as a new topic. It turns out that suggested topics aren't displayed in the drop-down menu to vote on. Since most people are lazy or just not very thoughtful, they'll just pick one of the available options. Talk about stacking the deck.

We're pretty sure that Microsoft will suppress this topic since they seem to have a delusion (based on the current state of their documentation) that people will only be going from Vista to Windows 7.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Birds of a Feather

get bored together?

This year at MMS 2009 we will again be hosting Birds-of-a-Feather (BOF) sessions on Tuesday and Wednesday evening after breakout sessions are finished for the day. BOF sessions are informal community topics where attendees have the opportunity to meet and discuss a topic of common interest peer-to-peer or for an Industry expert to answer questions on their area of expertise.

To ensure that the topics hosted at BOF sessions reflect the needs of all MMS 2009 attendees, we are asking you to vote for the topics you would most like to attend during the event.

I'll have to come up with some topic to suggest or I won't feel worthy of complaining, but I'm pretty sure that just like with broadcast television I'll be in the minority of what is found intriguing. It's probably going to be some buzzword-laden discussion of, "Fat client versus thin client," or some nonsense about cloud computing or software as a service. I quote Moon Unit Zappa when I say, "Gag me with a spoon." Please, prove me wrong.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

My MMS Schedule

This is probably a bit ambitious, but I think you have to go into this thing like a trip to Six Flags. I'm going to plan on riding every freakin' ride, but about 3 pm I'll probably be ready to just sit down and have a cheeseburger and a beer.

I'm going to summarize the session titles since some of them are as long as the intro to Shine on You Crazy Diamond.

An Introduction

I'm a systems engineer that focuses on the configuration and management of the desktop in a large enterprise environment, so I technology with a viewpoint that differs from "normal people," and even that of an email or system monitoring specialist. I'm a fairly silly and sarcastic guy, so this shouldn't be too stuffy. Although DeNiro disagrees, comedy is hard so I'm not going to "try" to be funny either (Shut up, B.). If it happens, great. I have no delusions about the scope or interest in this blog, but hopefully you'll find something you can use or enjoy.

I'm going to MMS 2009 and will be covering my journey and the sessions I attend.

Since imaging, GPO, and SCCM are parts of my responsibilities, I'll be focusing on the Client Management and Systems Management tracks although I will be attending a few other sessions as well.

For pure irony's sake, I'll most likely be writing all of my MMS entries on a MacBook that my company bought for my team (read, "me") to test.