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April 16, 2009

One Froggy Evening

Man, if Michigan J. Frog doesn't qualify as an O.G. pimp, NO ONE DOES!

Well, the presentation on System Center Essentials and Essential Business Server went off pretty smoothly, all things considered.

I was coughing like a 3 pack a day smoker, had just barely gotten my demo environment stood up in time, and (in the interest of full disclosure) was still about 3 slides from finished when it was time to start the show.

Thankfully Jeff Loucks and Amy Babinchak helped out with the LM, especially handling Q&A and giving feedback during the presentation which helped me adjust on-the-fly, as needed, during the preso. There was really only one point I felt like this…


TIP: Never ask me about the best location for NAP components in EBS.

But you know what really made all the difference? What really kept stuff flying high last night?

The attendees. That’s right…YOU GUYS!

The talk was a little bit business, but a whole lot rock-n-roll. I like to inject interactivity, to keep things lively and fresh and keep people engaged. But last night was dead silent because most folks weren’t using mics, and those who were did VERY WELL at muting them when not speaking (thanks for that guys!). But still…the vacuum of space always kinda freaks me out a little. What else would you expect from the White Noise MVP? All I can say is…thank goodness for that handy seat color palette.

In the end tho, the reason the attendees rocked was because a whole heaping bunch of folks, particularly from MS, pushed out last minute announcements about the meeting to a whole bunch of different blogs and other locations. Team NewBlood in action, baby!

And the result?

The attendee list during the LiveMeeting was about 90% brand-new names. Folks who kept firing in some good questions, even if they weren’t all on topic. And since LAST NIGHT…the EBSUserGroup on Yahoo has added 10 new members already!

Ev-r-y-bo-dy do the EBS raaaaaaaaaag!

Not bad for a dancing frog, huh?

|| posted by chris under business, community, freebie, it pro, mid-market it, virtualization, webcast || comments (0) || ||

April 13, 2009

The Make-Or-Break Feature Of Essential Business Server

Now THAT'S a console!

Tomorrow night I’ll be delivering a webcast to the EBSUserGroup titled “Using System Center Essentials With Windows Essential Business Server.” This is a pretty bold statement, but I personally think SCE is THE make-or-break feature of EBS for anyone who wants to use, support, or otherwise make EBS a part of their business.

We’ll talk about why that is, and a LOAD of other stuff during this webcast. This will primarily be a tech talk. So yeah, you’ll see me in full-on geek-out mode, just like Captain Crall talked about the other day. It’s gonna be packed with live demos, and prolly a semi-risque Powerpoint graphic or two. So come get your management on with us tomorrow night. Before your console looks like this…

TIIIIN dash! Rusted!

Tomorrow’s webcast, which is free and open to the public, starts at 5p Eastern/4p Central/2p Pacific. Here’s the connection info for attendees…

Subject:  Using System Center Essentials With Windows Essential Business Server
Start Time:  Tuesday, Apr 14, 2009 5:00 PM EDT
End Time:  Tuesday, Apr 14, 2009 6:30 PM EDT
Attendee URL:
Meeting ID:  4FPFJS
Attendee Entry Code:  P/NT3n<[h

This is a VoIP only conference, so if you want to ask live questions, bring a headset! Depending on how good performance is, I might even break out the webcam, so everyone can see the kind of Calvin faces I make while presenting.

Hope to see you there!

|| posted by chris under business, community, freebie, it pro, mid-market it, webcast || comments (1) || ||

April 13, 2009

Where I’ll Be In 2009

Riding the cyclone, Pecos style!

2009 quickly turned into a whirlwind, and in the pit of my stomach I feel like a cowboy who’s just about to hop on and try to ride that cyclone. Here’s a quick rundown with relevant links to all the talks, places, and conferences currently on my schedule.


14 – Webcast: Using System Center Essentials with Essential Business Server

20 – IT Pro Tiki Hut Tour, Huntsville AL (click to register)

26 thru 28 – IT Alliance, Atlanta GA (tentative)


1–3 – SMB Nation East (tentative)

11 thru 15 – Tech-Ed North America 2009, Los Angeles CA (tentative)

15 thru 17 – SMB Summit, Dallas TX (OFFICIALLY POSTPONED)


13 thru 16 – Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference, New Orleans LA (click to register)


2 thru 4 – SMB Nation, Las Vegas NV (tentative)

You know what really rocks tho? A new service call TripIt. Besides helping me track all my travel info in one super easy-to-use spot, TripIt also shows me which of the people I’m linked to will be nearby at the same time. Social networking for travel, which rocks! If nothing else, it helps cut down immensely on all the “You gonna be there? I dunno, YOU gonna be there?” back-and-forth that typically happens in the back channel around events.

You can sign up for TripIt at If you want to add me as a TripIt contact after you join, jump here:

|| posted by chris under business, community, it pro, mid-market it, mobility, travel, webcast || comments (1) || ||

April 12, 2009

Slam Dunking The Mid-Market, 5W/50 Style!

Yes, that is the incomparable Mister Jordan, competing in the NBA Slam Dunk competition his rookie year.

Last Friday I gave a webcast as part of the 5W/50 Series for Microsoft Partners. Titled “Adding Windows Essential Business Server to Your Infrastructure Practice,” the talk was almost completely focused on the business value of Essential Business Server, including why EBS should matter to both mid-market businesses and why you, as a Partner, might want to think about servicing that piece of sweet sweet candy known as mid-market.

Thanks muchly to everybody who came by to listen. Hopefully the session offered you some more insight into why EBS kicks more ass than a biker convention. If you weren’t able to make it, the session was recorded and is now available for on-demand viewing. Here’s a signup link for the recorded archive:

The sound recording came out very good, but my infamous “edge-to-edge” approach with Powerpoint graphics meant some stuff got moved around on the slides during the upload to LiveMeeting. So you might want to grab the slide deck from the 2009 5W/50 SkyDrive location and follow along using a local copy. Here’s a direct link to the deck (URL pre-shrunk for your convenience):

This is just the first in a LONG line of public stuff I’ll be doing this year. Will be posting the full-on schedule next week.

|| posted by chris under business, freebie, it pro, mid-market it, webcast || comments (0) || ||

April 9, 2009

Why Essential Business Server Matters

Never sure what the optimal time for announcing this stuff is, but I’ve tended to find that the closer to time the better, strangely enough.

I’ll be delivering a webcast for the 5W/50 series tomorrow titled “Adding Essential Business Server to Your Infrastructure Practice.” The webcast, which is free for Microsoft Partners, will start at 9:00a Pacific time.

Sadly enough, I've seen too many server and wiring closets in mid-market organizations that looked just like this.

There will be a smidge of technical talk, mainly to assure that everyone tuning in has the base knowledge of EBS that will be needed to understand the bulk of the session, which will be serious business talk about mid-market and why it can be a very solid target niche, the common drivers behind mid-market IT, and how to best position your company to serve the mid-market. We’ll also show why EBS is a perfect fit to serve this market, and the five most compelling features in EBS that make mid-market clients sit up and take notice.

Here’s the signup link for this session:

Hope you’ll come and join the talk tomorrow!


|| posted by chris under business, freebie, it pro, mid-market it, webcast || comments (1) || ||

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