Windows Web Solutions UPDATE, April 22, 2003

Windows Web Solutions UPDATE, April 22, 2003


Windows Web Solutions UPDATE--brought to you by Windows Web Solutions, the Windows & .NET Magazine print newsletter with tools and solutions for managing your Web site.



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April 22, 2003--In this issue:

1. COMMENTARY - IIS 6.0 Ready to Ship

2. KEEPING UP WITH IIS - Using the IIS Lockdown Tool 2.0 to Modify Server Roles - Results from Last Issue's Instant Poll: Your IIS 6.0 Impressions - This Issue's Instant Poll: Windows Server 2003 Launch

3. ANNOUNCEMENTS - Get the eBook That Will Help You Get Certified! - Sample Our Security Administrator Newsletter!

4. RESOURCES - Event Highlight: Visual Studio Connections - Featured Thread: Back Up Only the FTP Virtual Directories

5. NEW AND IMPROVED - Compress Web Server Data in Realtime - Submit Top Product Ideas

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




(contributed by Tim Huckaby, [email protected])

* IIS 6.0 READY TO SHIP Microsoft produces a short video called "Building Windows" that it shows at numerous Microsoft events all over the world. As new Windows versions have appeared, the OS's features have expanded, and the Windows team has grown larger and has evolved, Microsoft has produced and shown new versions of this impressive video. The video details how the Windows software team builds software by identifying, fixing, and regression-testing bugs; incorporating user changes and suggestions; and recompiling the software twice a day. Microsoft will probably soon release a new version of this video that shows the world how it built Windows Server 2003.

To build IIS, Microsoft uses procedures similar to those that it uses to build the OS. So that you can get an idea of what goes into building IIS, I'd like to take you through the process of building Windows. However, because much of the process is held under a strict nondisclosure agreement (NDA), I can't give comprehensive details. The process begins with pilots and prototypes. The next steps are the alpha builds of the software, which are never shown publicly and usually don't even include installation programs. Then, Microsoft releases the beta version. Microsoft carefully plans public betas and uses the beta process to get feedback and identify bugs from non-Microsoft people and companies around the world. Microsoft makes it clear to those who use beta builds that the software isn't ready to put into production. Beta builds often include what Microsoft calls "show-stoppers," which are bugs that are so serious that Microsoft needs to fix them before releasing the software. Internal betas of the software exist, too, and are available only to Microsoft employees and trusted partners.

After Microsoft decides that the beta process is complete, the release candidate (RC) process starts. The RC builds of Windows identify the final stretch. Microsoft usually has confidence in a RC and uses the public to do last-minute regression testing. RCs are also used for broad public adoption before the software actually ships. RCs let the more technically savvy companies become familiar with the new version before they can actually buy it. Many companies go live in production on RC builds. For Windows Server 2003, Microsoft will release a list of early adopter companies at public launch events all over the world on April 24. After the RC period (Windows Server 2003 had two RCs), the software hits the release to manufacturing (RTM) stage.

Last week, Microsoft handed off the Windows Server 2003 gold code to CD replication contractors to create the hologrammed CD images and product box and to shrink-wrap the software for distribution. Handing off the gold code marks the completion of more than 3 years of work by 5000 Windows team members, who represent 10 percent of the entire Microsoft employee base.

Rather than shipping as a separate product, IIS 6.0 ships as part of Windows Server 2003 OS. I've deployed IIS 6.0 in production internally and for many customers, and I think it's very fast. Under its default configuration, IIS 6.0 seems twice as fast as IIS 5.0. Microsoft won't reveal the official third-party performance metrics until a few weeks after the official launch event, but I guarantee that you'll see impressive performance gains.

Microsoft will formally introduce Windows 2003 in a worldwide launch event on April 24 in San Francisco. To find out more about the Windows 2003 launch events, go to




* USING THE IIS LOCKDOWN TOOL 2.0 TO MODIFY SERVER ROLES Question: I want to use the IIS Lockdown Tool 2.0 as one step toward securing my company's IIS servers, but none of the existing server roles fit my needs. Can I modify the server roles?

For the answer, click the following link:

* RESULTS FROM LAST ISSUE'S INSTANT POLL: YOUR IIS 6.0 IMPRESSIONS The voting has closed in the Windows & .NET Magazine Windows Web Solutions channel's nonscientific Instant Poll for the question, "If you have worked with the beta version of IIS 6.0, what are your first impressions?" Here are the results from the 27 responses: - 59% I am extremely impressed. It adds a lot of new functionality. - 26% I'm somewhat impressed but need more convincing. - 15% I'm not impressed at all. It doesn't offer enhanced functionality.

* THIS ISSUE'S INSTANT POLL: WINDOWS SERVER 2003 LAUNCH The next Instant Poll question is, "Do you plan on attending one of the many free nationwide Windows Server 2003 launch events?" Go to the Windows & .NET Magazine Windows Web Solutions home page and submit your vote for a) Yes, b) I'd probably go if I knew more about it, c) No I don't plan on attending.



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

* GET THE EBOOK THAT WILL HELP YOU GET CERTIFIED! The "Insider's Guide to IT Certification," from the Windows & .NET Magazine Network, has one goal: to help you save time and money on your quest for certification. Find out how to choose the best study guides, save hundreds of dollars, and be successful as an IT professional. The amount of time you spend reading this book will be more than made up by the time you save preparing for your certification exams. Order your copy today!

* SAMPLE OUR SECURITY ADMINISTRATOR NEWSLETTER! If you spend the better part of your day dealing with security concerns such as controlling user access, viruses, and tightening your network's permeability, then you can benefit from the type of information we publish each month in Security Administrator. Every issue shows you how to protect your enterprise with informative, in-depth articles, timely tips, and practical advice. Sample our most recent issue today!



* EVENT HIGHLIGHT: VISUAL STUDIO CONNECTIONS May 6 to 9, 2003 New Orleans, Louisiana

Visual Studio Connections is a conference that provides insights and how-to information so you can build faster line-of-business and Web applications that are scalable and more reliable. Session topics include Build Web Applications with Visual Studio .NET, XML Web Services with Visual Studio .NET, ADO.NET for ADO Classic Developers, Using Web Service Enhancements 1.0 with VB.NET, and Leveraging WMI in Building .NET Applications.

For other upcoming events, check out the Windows & .NET Magazine Events Calendar.

* FEATURED THREAD: BACK UP ONLY THE FTP VIRTUAL DIRECTORIES Forum member "Rim" has been having problems with an FTP server running Windows NT 4.0 Service Pack 5 (SP5) and wants to back up the FTP virtual directories in case he needs to restore them. Rim wants to know how to easily back up and restore only the FTP virtual directories without restoring the whole server. He also wants to know whether he can move the FTP virtual directories from one IIS server to another. To lend Rim a helping hand, click the following URL:



(contributed by Sue Cooper, [email protected])

* COMPRESS WEB SERVER DATA IN REALTIME Inner Media released SqueezePlay 2.0, realtime Web compressor software for Internet Information Server (IIS) 4.0 and later. You can selectively apply SqueezePlay's methods to static and dynamically created content. Supported static file types include HTML, JavaScript, VBScript, XML, JPEG, GIF, Portable Networks Graphics (PNG), and PDF. SqueezePlay gives you control of compression choices on a global, per folder, and a per file basis and lets you track metrics through the Windows Performance Monitor. Pricing starts at $995 for one server license. Contact Inner Media at 800-962-2949, 603-465-3216, or [email protected]

* 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]



Here's how to reach us with your comments and questions:

* ABOUT THE COMMENTARY -- [email protected]

* ABOUT THE NEWSLETTER IN GENERAL -- [email protected] (please mention the newsletter name in the subject line)


* PRODUCT NEWS -- [email protected]




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