Monday, December 28th, 2009
I stumbled on this site a few weeks back after it picked up http://wordpress.tweetmeme.com which basically collates all the tweets related to wordpress… a great resource for sure. I had this sitting on my IE window today and suddenly it redirected to another location… see the screenshots below. I believe that the advertising network they use for their banner ads is infected with a malicious ad that redirects you to the site shown. I’ve no way to contact these people direct so I’m blogging this so that others will know.
Going to the site can produce the following redirect
Regardless if you press OK or Cancel you get the following which looks real but is in fact inside your web browser
Again regardless of what you press you get the following screen – notice it’s a Windows XP dialog box… I’m running Windows 7
Again regardless of what you press it will try to install what is sure to be spyware… and the loop goes on.
Thursday, December 24th, 2009
Tomorrow is Christmas day here in Australia. I’ll naturally be taking the time to spend with my kids and family now and over the next few days. Christmas in Australia is not a white snow covered affair with turkey and roast vegetables… it’s a hot sun, day at the beach with salads and cold meat thing… loads of fun to be sure!
I wanted to take a moment to say thank you to all the people who read this site, the posts I make to the many public forums I participate in and the ones that come up to me to say hi at the presentations I do from time to time. It’s with the great feedback that I get from you all that allows me to keep pushing forwards and trying to deliver great content across the board.
In 2010 you can expect to see some major changes to SBSfaq.com both as a website and a knowledge centre for all things Microsoft SMB Server related. I’m looking forward to finally releasing my first two books which have been put on the back burner due to many many different things that life has thrown at me.
I’ll close by saying Thank you to each and everyone of you and I wish yuo all the best for the holiday season and the year to come.
Thursday, December 24th, 2009
This weeks blog post for CRN Channel Web is focused on things I’d like to see in 2010. Hope you enjoy it.
Tuesday, December 22nd, 2009
You know… I’ve been beating on Trend’s door now for some time about a heap of issues… one of them being disk space consumed by Trends Worry-Free Business Security products. I heard rumours that they were working on a tool to resolve this and then found out today via one of the other posters in the community that they had in fact released a tool to solve this nearly a month ago now. Ok – so I’m more than a little upset that they didn’t let me know that the things I’ve been asking about have been resolved. To me this reinforces the fact that Trend are a company of good engineers, that don’t know how to communicate to us in the SMB space. They need to get this right and fast now if they are to survive the competitive landscape that is around us.
One of the ways they are doing this with with a cool utility called Trendy. This utility runs on your computer and will notify you whenever they release new things for us in the SMB space. You can download it here. When run it will show you the latest cool announcements from Trend that pertain to the SMB space. You can see below where they have announced a utility to help clean up disk space on a regular basis for WFBS 5.x and 6.0.
Go ahead – check it out – it’s pretty cool.
Friday, December 18th, 2009
My blog post for this week for CRN Channel Web was about the process we use to hire staff at Correct Solutions. Hope you find the information useful. You can read the post here
Wednesday, December 16th, 2009
Stephen West, Trend Micro Australia, Small Business Manager for ANZ has let me know that he’s moving on to other challenges and will be leaving Trend at the end of 2009. He’s been one of the moving forces behind Trends deep penetration into the SMB market here in Australia and I’m sure will be sorely missed by Trend Australia. Dave Patniak – Trend Micro Australia’s Managing Director said that they “will make an announcement before the end of the year as to Stephens replacement”. Fingers crossed it is someone who really understands the needs of us SMB IT Professionals and can continue on the great work that Stephen has done over the years. The good news is though that he’s not moving all that far away.
Stephen is moving over to take up a similar role with StorageCraft Asia Pacific. Greg Wyman – the Regional Director for StorageCraft Asia Pacific has gained an extremely experienced person in Stephen. Greg has said that “Stephen will head up the newly created SMB Team here at StorageCraft which is the start of a renewed focus on the SMB channel that has supported us so well over the last few years.”
I’m sure that once we give Stephen a few weeks to settle in that he’ll be back out in the community trying to figure out what makes us tick and how he can help us better increase our business. Stephen was well known for taking our feedback deep within Trend and helping make things better for all SMB IT Professionals in Australia. I know he will be trying to do the same for StorageCraft which is fantastic news for us all.
Congratulations to Stephen and also to StorageCraft for the good hire.
Tuesday, December 15th, 2009
We all know the economy is not good globally, so it’s with great pleasure that I announce that my other company – Correct Solutions which I started back in 1997 and now share with Ryan Spillane has made it to number 21 in CRN Australia’s top 50 fastest growing IT companies. The CRN Fast 50 was designed to highlight those resellers in Australia that have grown above and beyond the average. You can see the full list here
Personally – I’m very proud to have “my little business” grow so well and I give my thanks to my business partner Ryan Spillane without who, I’m sure this would not have happened.
So – what are you planning to do in 2010 to make your business grow? We have plans for our growth, what about you?
Monday, December 14th, 2009
The news is all abuzz about Microsoft releasing free Antivirus software recently. Indeed they have – Microsoft Security Essentials is available free of charge. So like any good techo, I need to take a look at this. I’m evaluating this from the perspective of finding out if it could replace Trend Micro WFBS on our client sites. I uninstalled Trend Micro WFBS 6.0 from my Windows 7 laptop, rebooted and installed the new Microsoft Security Essentials product. Install was pretty straight forward – I reckon my grandmother could do it.
Naturally I skipped over the EULA like most techos and that is not good. You see according to the EULA, MSE is free for home use and home based business use. It is NOT free for business not based at home. What this means is that the majority of my clients are not permitted to use this on their work computers. Strike One for MS.
Ok – so now it’s installed my laptop, I take a look at the application itself. It looks very simple indeed. I start to dig under the covers and find it’s already setup a scheduled scan for me. Great. Looking through the console I can see this is a pretty simple product. Obviously designed for the end user in mind, and not the techo.
In all our client sites, we really love the centralised management console that we have to control the systems configuration and reporting. This to me is mandatory for any product that I’ll use in the SMB space and NOT having it means that this product is worth less to me. No central management console – Strike Two.
No after using it for a few days (I started writing this a little bit back now), I’ve found some very “interesting” features. One of them is that the laptop fails to go into suspend mode. It just freezes and locks up. Hmm – did not have a problem with this with Trend. Strike Three and you’re out.
So in brief… this is a product designed for home use, NOT for small business use at all. If you want free AV supported by a name we all know, then this is certainly something to look at.
Saturday, December 12th, 2009
I wrote this blog post a few weeks back now, but “lost it”… I figured the information is still relevant so I’d post it anyway.
I’m due shortly to fly home to Australia for Las Vegas. I’ve been here now for 8 days, a little longer than I should have due to a planning mishap on my part. I wanted to put together a few thoughts on the event, the people and the location for reflection. For those that did not come – well – you missed out on a great event. Make sure you book in early for next year (no that is not a paid comment)
The Event. SMBNation 2009 was for me the best ever SMBNation event. It felt to me that the vibe was back where as in previous years it felt flat. The vibe comes from the people attending, presenting, organising and sponsoring the event. Susan and I were the tech chairs for the GeekSpeak track and whilst Harry had his own ideas on what should be in it, he gave us great flexibility to “make it our own”. Susan and I set about creating a track that would help resellers of all sizes understand the current and future technologies. We reviewed the submissions and then went about dragging in various resources to build the track that you all saw. We hope we identified areas that people did not know existed such as the “Alternates to Microsoft” track that Eriq Neale presented, or the “Migrating to Windows 7” track that Mikael Nystrom ran. I think that one of the best attended sessions was the “SBS Migration Strategies” with Jeff Middleton and Karl Palachuk which was both insightful and a riot – the only thing missing from it was the boxing gloves and the bell Also we had two Aussies presenting this year – myself with Dana Epp about Virtualisation in the SMB space, and Robert Crane with his SharePoint specialities that got rave reviews. I have to say too that normally when I come to SMBNation, that I learn very little. Such was the quality of the sessions delivered by the GeekSpeak track that I learned a heap!
The People. The people that attend an event really make a big difference. With things like TechEd, or Partner Conference, I tend to find that the attendees keep to themselves more so than at an SMB focused event like SMBNation. The amount of information sharing was fantastic. Also the vendors that were at the show were really SMB focused – some of them were products I’ve never heard of and now I’ve got some interesting work to do in Australia to see if some of these products have a place in our market. The presenters made themselves available and I saw and was involved in many discussions that went beyond the things we discussed in our presentations that added great value all round.
The Location. The location in Las Vegas was fine with me – I heard some people express concern over the hotel rooms, but mine was fine. The conference rooms were all good except for the underestimation of the power of the GeekSpeak track and it’s room being a long narrow airplane style room which made it very hard for both presenters and attendees. Internet access was also very frustrating for both attendees and the presenters and I think this is an area that needs to be resolved for next year. The rooms were all in one area which made it very easy for us to get around and having the hotel rooms close to the conference itself was very much appreciated.
Harry and the Team. Harry, Cindy, Jenny, Patti, Julie (and other nameless faces) that did everything to make this work well. I’ll ensure I bring more Caramello Koalas for the girls as a reward for the hard work they did. Harry – thank you for having the balls to pull this event together in a time when the world wide economy is struggling. I believe that the investments made in the SMB space will reap rewards in a massive way as the economy picks up for everyone.
The last thing I ask everyone who attended (me included). Spend a few minutes each day this week reflecting on something new you’ve learned over the conference. Make sure you write down your plans and then stick to them. Take the business cards you gathers from people and ensure you stay in contact with them. And finally – join the online community and continue the discussions with the people you’ve met there. You can find out more about the online communities at www.sbsfaq.com/helpme
Friday, December 11th, 2009
I recently moved my 2140 from a 160GB SATA drive over to a 120GB SSD drive. Below you can see the performance of the system with the disk at a rating of 5.4.
Following the replacement with the SSD, you can see below the performance has gone up to 7.1 which is pretty darn impressive. From my perspective it does seem to run faster all round. In fact I’m finding it hard to fault this unit for the work I’m doing right now as it performs very well indeed.
Battery life is also better than before, but I suspect Windows 7 does not know how to accurately predict the battery life with the SSD as the estimates seem to be lower, even though I’m finding the actual life to be longer.