Fun & Games at Microsoft Ireland Community Tech Day

September 13, 2010  |   Blog   |   Posted by   |   0 Comment

Last Friday I attended a Microsoft hosted seminar at the EPDC in Dublin on the latest updates in Microsoft IT infrastructure. The topics covered were:

Service Pack 1 for Windows 7 and Windows Server R2: There was very little new for Windows 7, just a consolidation of all released updates. However, the big plus for Windows Server 2008 R2 was the addition of support for Dynamic Memory and RemoteFX – see here for more details.

Service Pack 1 for Microsoft Exchange 2010: One of the new features that it adds is the ability to sync SMS Messages between a mobile phone and an Exchange mailbox. This is something that I have been asked about on numerous occasions. The full list of updates is here.

System Center Essential 2010: I had been aware of Operations Manager (the previous incarnation of SCE) for some time, but always dismissed it as an Enterprise solution that did not scale to the SME clients that I deal with.  However, this new release is built for midsized businesses with 50 to 500 PCs. SCE 2010 provides a unified solution to the problem of managing servers (physical & virtual), clients, hardware, software and IT services. It enables you to proactively manage your IT environment, helping keep your system up-to-date with a solution that accelerates problem resolution and enables automation of system updates and data collection. You can read more about it here. It is a very impressive product that I will be looking to roll out in the near future.

So what about the fun and games? Well, during the lunch break, they organised a demo of Kinect – Microsoft’s answer to the Nintendo Wii controller that does not need a hand-held controller. This unit plugs into any Xbox 360 and uses a couple of cameras and a microphone to track your movements and speech. It was a lot of fun and definitely on my Christmas list. Here is a short video I shot at the event – you can see the Kinect unit at the base of the screen.

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