Windows Web Solutions UPDATE, November 5, 2002

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November 5, 2002—In this issue:

1. COMMENTARY

  • Tablet PCs: More Impressive Than You Think

2. KEEPING UP WITH IIS

  • Keep Your Hotfixes Current
  • Results from Last Issue's Instant Poll: MEC 2002
  • This Issue's Instant Poll: IPSec for IIS Servers?

3. ANNOUNCEMENTS

  • Try a Sample Issue of Exchange & Outlook Administrator
    • Planning on Getting Certified? Make Sure to Pick Up Our New eBook!

    4. RESOURCES

    • Event Highlight: COMDEX Fall 2002
    • Featured Thread: Block ActiveX Security Warning Installations

    5. NEW AND IMPROVED

    • Build Extended Workflows
    • Submit Top Product Ideas

    6. CONTACT US
    See this section for a list of ways to contact us.


    1. COMMENTARY

  • TABLET PCS: MORE IMPRESSIVE THAN YOU THINK

  • I'm not a gadget person—at least, I don't believe I am. I have the potential to be one, though. I had one of the original Compaq iPAQ Pocket PCs (which runs Windows CE) with wireless Internet access, and I hated it so much that I almost cast it into the sea, cussing at it as it flew. The device was great for reading information, but I couldn't use the stylus to write email messages (or anything else, for that matter). The handwriting-recognition engines that run on small devices are weak and inept. But the most frustrating problem was the left-handers' curse associated with using stylus-based devices like the Pocket PC. Like most left-handers, I hook my left hand when writing so that I can see what I've written. The left-handers' curse is when my fingers and other parts of my left hand accidentally and casually touch the Pocket PC's screen. Whether I'm tapping the stylus on a representation of a keyboard or simply using the handwriting recognition, the Pocket PC's attempt to translate these extraneous touches causes a scrambled mayhem of words.

    I religiously use a Research In Motion (RIM) BlackBerry device, but only because I receive approximately 150 email messages a day and the thought of having to read that much email each night is terrifying. RIM provides awesome coast-to-coast service and software, and a RIM device works even in airplanes up to about 10,000' and every time you encounter satellites at higher elevations. (Yes, I do realize that I'm not supposed to send and receive email during a flight.) I've become proficient at typing email messages with both thumbs. The device isn't ideal, but it's effective for short messages. I wish I had the power of a Windows OS on the BlackBerry, though.

    Why do I tell you all this? Because not one of the new handheld devices that have proliferated in the market over the past few years has impressed or enticed me. The new T-Mobile Smartphone 2002 and other cell phones that boast Windows CE on a cellular device with acceptable Internet connectivity do nothing for me. You can use the cell phone to read email or Microsoft Word documents, but such devices just aren't efficient for inputting information. Microsoft Compact .NET Framework capabilities on these devices let you build and run some pretty awesome applications, but you still have to deal with problems inputting data.

    When I heard about Tablet PCs more than a year ago, I immediately dismissed them as useless. I haven't been that wrong since I predicted the collapse of an Internet overburdened by a gazillion users. How was I supposed to know that a little company named Cisco Systems would succeed at making a poorly designed infrastructure viable with these "router things"?

    A few weeks ago, Lance Lillie, a principal technical specialist at Microsoft, gave me a demonstration of Microsoft Windows XP Tablet PC Edition, and I was blown away. Before seeing Lillie's incredible demo, I assumed XP Tablet PC Edition would simply afflict me with the left-handers' curse on a larger device running a dummied-down version of Windows. I was wrong. First, the Microsoft Tablet PC doesn't run Windows CE. The device runs a full-blown version of Windows XP and has several enhancements. On November 7, Microsoft will launch XP Tablet PC Edition, a superset of Windows XP Professional Edition that adds pen-based capabilities to notebook computers. And left-handers won't need to endure the left-handers' curse, because the Tablet PC uses electromagnetic technology that recognizes the stroke of only the pen. You can touch the screen as much as you want, and it won't register a response.

    In the coming weeks, more than a dozen manufacturers will release Tablet PC models ranging from convertible designs with hinged or detachable screens to rugged slates with innovative docking solutions that let you instantly grab and go and that can take the punishment of road warriors like me. In my next column, I'll drill into the features of these computers and XP Tablet PC Edition. Until then, I've got to get my hands on one of those Tablet PCs! I suggest you attend one of the free XP Tablet PC Edition launch events that will start nationwide on November 7 ( http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/events/tablet/default.asp ).

    Tim Huckaby, News Editor, [email protected]


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    2. KEEPING UP WITH IIS

  • KEEP YOUR HOTFIXES CURRENT

  • Do you know what patches other administrators have installed on your company's IIS servers? To make sure that your IIS servers have the necessary hotfixes, you can use Microsoft Windows Update. IIS is on the list of services that Windows Update checks. If you have a lot of servers, you'll want to use the Microsoft Network Security Hotfix Checker (Hfnetchk) tool, which reports on the hotfixes that you need to install on one server or on all systems on a network. For more information, click the following link:
    http://www.windowswebsolutions.com/articles/index.cfm?articleid=22270

  • RESULTS FROM LAST ISSUE'S INSTANT POLL: MEC 2002

  • The voting has closed in the Windows & .NET Magazine Windows Web Solutions channel's nonscientific Instant Poll for the question, "Did you attend MEC 2002, and what was your opinion of it?" Here are the results (+/-1 percent) from the 23 responses.
    • 13% I went and was very satisfied with this year's conference.
    • 17% I went and was somewhat satisfied with this year's conference.
    • 0% I went but wish I hadn't.
    • 30% I didn't go but wish I had.
    • 39% I didn't go and don't regret it.

  • THIS ISSUE'S INSTANT POLL: IPSEC FOR IIS SERVERS?

  • The next Instant Poll question is, "Do you use IP Security (IPSec) to help secure your IIS servers?" Go to the Windows & .NET Magazine Windows Web Solutions home page and submit your vote for a) Yes or b) No.
    http://www.windowswebsolutions.com

    3. ANNOUNCEMENTS
    (brought to you by Windows & .NET Magazine and its partners)

  • TRY A SAMPLE ISSUE OF EXCHANGE & OUTLOOK ADMINISTRATOR

  • If you haven't seen Exchange & Outlook Administrator, you're missing out on key information that will go a long way toward preventing serious problems and downtime for your enterprise. Get a free sample issue today, and discover tools you won't find anywhere else to help you migrate, optimize, administer, and secure Exchange and Outlook. Subscribe now!
    http://www.exchangeadmin.com/sub.cfm?code=efei232jup

  • PLANNING ON GETTING CERTIFIED? MAKE SURE TO PICK UP OUR NEW EBOOK!

  • "The Insider's Guide to IT Certification" eBook is hot off the presses and contains everything you need to know to help you save time and money while preparing for certification exams from Microsoft, Cisco Systems, and CompTIA and have a successful career in IT. Get your copy of the Insider's Guide today!
    http://winnet.bookaisle.com/ebookcover.asp?ebookid=13475

    4. RESOURCES

  • EVENT HIGHLIGHT: COMDEX FALL 2002

  • November 16 through 21, 2002
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    http://www.comdex.com/fall

    COMDEX Fall 2002 educational programs include Business Technology, Web Certification, Market Leaders Track, and IT Professional Certification. The conference's marketplace is organized into technology segments to make it easier for you to find solutions. Technology segments are Information Security, Digital Lifestyles, Realtime Enterprises, Digital Imaging & Document Management, Web Services, Networking, Storage, eMobility & Wireless, IT Services, and OEM & International Components Manufacturers.

    For other upcoming events, check out the Windows & .NET Magazine Events Calendar.
    http://www.winnetmag.net/events

  • FEATURED THREAD: BLOCK ACTIVEX SECURITY WARNING INSTALLATIONS

  • Randy has installed the SurfControl Web filter to control what users can access and download from the Internet. When a Web site asks a user whether he or she wants to run or install an ActiveX-controlled item and the user says yes, the filter doesn't block the incoming executable. Randy needs a way to stop users from overriding the filter without preventing them from running Windows Update. To lend a helping hand, visit the following URL:
    http://www.winnetmag.com/forums/messageview.cfm?catid=41&threadid=48968

    5. NEW AND IMPROVED
    (contributed by Sue Cooper, [email protected])

  • BUILD EXTENDED WORKFLOWS

  • Teamplate released Teamplate Workflow Wizard, software that provides a graphical interface into Microsoft Content Management Server 2002's workflow capabilities and simplifies the process of building extended workflows. Teamplate Workflow Wizard lets you automate your content-review and -approval processes. The product's task management, prioritization, and monitoring features ensure a smooth workflow and timely publication of accurate and authorized data to your Web site. Teamplate Workflow Wizard is available as a standalone product or as a component of Teamplate for .NET, a set of Microsoft .NET business objects that you can integrate to form deployable workflow applications. Template Workflow Wizard runs on Windows XP, Windows 2000, Windows NT, Windows Me, and Windows 98 systems. Pricing is $7500 per CPU. Contact Template at 403-668-6300, 866-527-6300, and [email protected].
    http://www.teamplate.com

  • SUBMIT TOP PRODUCT IDEAS

  • Have you used a product that changed your IT experience by saving you time or easing your daily burden? Do you know of a terrific product that others should know about? Tell us! We want to write about the product in a future What's Hot column. Send your product suggestions to [email protected].

    6. CONTACT US
    Here's how to reach us with your comments and questions:

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