Microsoft Windows Installer, Application Compatibility and Deployments

App-DNA Webinar: Making Desktop Transformation Journey a Reality

Application management can be a huge hurdle in starting the desktop transformation journey. Join App-DNA to learn how to develop a clear direction, a map, and perhaps a shortcut to reach your desktop virtualization destination more quickly – and with fewer detours. App-DNA walks through a desktop virtualization project, from scoping the time, cost and risk to the organization all the way to automatically virtualizing applications.

In this webinar, you will Learn where to start assessing the application portfolio, how to start assessing which applications may be a best fit for virtual deployment, mapping project time, cost and risk, options for remediating troublesome applications and automatically creating virtual packages for Citrix XenApp and Microsoft App-V, plus MSI.

Thursday, November 10, 2011 9:30 AM – 10:30 AM CST

Register for the Webinar here –


Microsoft Windows Installer, Application Compatibility and Deployments

Internet Explorer 9 – Group Policy Settings and other FAQ for IT Pros

Internet Explorer 9 FAQ for IT Professionals

Group Policy Settings Reference Windows Internet Explorer 9

This spreadsheet lists the policy settings for computer and user configurations included in the administrative template files (admx/adml) delivered with Windows Internet Explorer 9. The policy settings included in this spreadsheet cover Internet Explorer 5, Internet Explorer 6, Internet Explorer 7, Internet Explorer 8 and Internet Explorer 9. These files are used to expose policy settings when you edit Group Policy objects (GPOs) using Group Policy Object Editor (also known as GPEdit).

Group Policy Settings (TechNet)

Microsoft® Windows® Internet Explorer® 8 provided nearly 1,500 Group Policy settings that IT pros can use to manage and control the web browser configuration. For example, Internet Explorer 8 provided Group Policy settings that govern access to settings on the Internet Options dialog box, define security zones, and add or remove websites in a security zone. Internet Explorer 9 adds new Group Policy settings to support new features. Table 3 describes some of these new Group Policy settings. Note that from Internet Explorer 9 Beta to Internet Explorer 9, a few additional policies have been added, based on new features in Internet Explorer 9 and user feedback.

Toolkit to Disable Automatic Delivery of Internet Explorer 9

To help our customers become more secure and up-to-date, Microsoft will distribute Windows Internet Explorer 9 as an important update through Automatic Updates for Windows Vista SP2 for x64 and x86, Windows Server 2008 SP2 for x64 and x86, Windows 7 x86 RTM and higher and Windows Server 2008 R2 RTM and higher for x64. This Blocker Toolkit is intended for organizations that would like to block automatic delivery of Internet Explorer 9 to machines in environments where Automatic Updates is enabled. The Blocker Toolkit will not expire.

Microsoft Virtualization Windows Installer, Application Compatibility and Deployments

Slashing Windows 7 Migration, Virtualization and App Packaging Costs!

Flexera Software, the leading provider of strategic Application Usage Management solutions for application producers and their customers, today announced the launch of AdminStudio Suite 10.  The new release, optimally priced for enterprises of all sizes, is the industry’s first comprehensive Application Readiness solution enabling organizations to strategically manage application packaging and remediation across their entire software estate, mitigating Windows 7 and application virtualization migration risks.

“The evolution – from application packaging as a means to better manage costs in a static technology world, to application management as a means to better manage quality and compatibility in a dynamic technology world – is a game changer” said Chris Jackson, a principal consultant at Microsoft (better known as ‘The App Compat Guy’). “It allows organizations to see beyond their current state and regain their technology agility.”

AdminStudio 10

With as many as 35% of an enterprise’s applications requiring updates in any given year, coupled with the explosive growth in Windows 7 migrations and virtualization initiatives, compatibility assessment, remediation and packaging processes are now of strategic importance to IT organizations.  AdminStudio delivers application packaging efficiencies as much as nine times greater compared to manual efforts.

  • AdminStudio 10 now lets users centrally manage and report on the virtual and traditional application portfolio for an overall view of the application estate’s readiness for each format.
  • A new, unified “application-centric” application catalog manages all deployment types for an application, enabling all packages, including virtual packages, to be handled with the same process and tools as those used for MSIs, eliminating the cost and complexity of having multiple solutions and repositories.
  • Moreover, AdminStudio 10 is now powered by the latest version of the world’s leading MSI authoring and editing tool, InstallShield® 2011, giving users complete flexibility in editing packages using the same installation preparation tool relied on by more than 71,000 ISVs worldwide.

“Most organizations do not have adequate visibility into their application portfolio to reliably understand the time, cost and resources required to successfully migrate their applications,” said Maureen Polte, senior director of product management at Flexera Software. “AdminStudio 10 delivers continual readiness via a repeatable, reliable process to prepare and package MSI and virtual applications for Windows 7 migrations or day-to-day upgrades, drastically reducing the cost, labor and risk associated with application migrations.”

AdminStudio Application Compatibility Pack

Now available as part of AdminStudio Suite is the new AdminStudio Application Compatibility Pack.

  • AdminStudio Application Compatibility Pack automatically assesses all applications to accurately calculate the effort and cost of the migration project.
  • It also pinpoints and fixes application compatibility issues for desktop, server and web-based applications.  As a result, packagers can test applications in minutes instead of weeks and obtain an overall view of the compatibility of all applications, including which ones require fixing for deployment on Windows 7 or Internet Explorer 8.
  • Moreover, for applications that do require remediation, AdminStudio Application Compatibility Pack generates a standard MSI transform, automatically fixing in a matter of minutes 98% of installation package-related Windows 7 compatibility issues.  This drastically reduces overall costs by removing the need for skilled packaging and support resources and manual efforts.

Significantly, like all products in AdminStudio Suite, AdminStudio Application Compatibility Pack utilizes a perpetual, per administrator license, making it optimally priced and packaged for all enterprises, including small and midsized businesses.

“The biggest challenge with Windows 7 migrations is the applications.  Organizations have had trouble cost-justifying commercial application compatibility products priced on a per-application basis, and most large organizations have hundreds or thousands of applications (the rule of thumb is one application for every 10 users)”, said Terry Cosgrove, Principal Research Analyst at Gartner.

“Seamlessly integrated application compatibility testing and remediation should be part of the DNA of any robust Application Readiness process,” says Polte. “Unlike point solutions priced on the number of applications, which are often prohibitively expensive and discourage use as part of a continual Application Readiness strategy, AdminStudio Application Compatibility Pack is unique in its integration into a comprehensive, affordable suite and in its predictable cost, encouraging unlimited use and adoption of industry best practices.”

AdminStudio Virtualization Pack

Today’s launch also includes enhancements to AdminStudio Virtualization Pack, which prepares reliable virtual applications for deployment with a complete set of suitability testing, automated conversion, validation, editing and management reporting capabilities.

  • Enhanced validation and conflict testing of Microsoft® App-V packages supports packagers in managing both MSI and App-V with the same tool and processes to ensure a consistent, unified approach.
  • Packagers can also directly edit App-V packages, saving significant time and effort by eliminating the need to re-convert from an MSI when a change to an App-V package is required.
  • AdminStudio Virtualization Pack’s enhancements also include robust suitability testing – removing the trial and error approach to determining if applications can be virtualized.  This along with customizable reports and dashboards provides essential decision support for choosing the appropriate delivery/deployment technology via continuous reporting on the application estate’s readiness for each format.

“AdminStudio is a life saver for us.  It gets the job done,” said Brandon Farmer, systems engineer at United States Marine Corps Intelligence Activity.  “We’re constantly juggling multiple packaging projects on very limited resources, such as our recent migration from Windows XP to Windows 7 – and we don’t have time to waste doing things manually, or trying to cobble together a patchwork of freeware and tactical tools that don’t hit the mark. We just virtualized Microsoft Word 2003 using AdminStudio, and it took me a half hour – compared to the days it would have otherwise taken.”

“Flexera Software continues to deliver solutions that help automate our customers’ adoption of Windows 7 and App-V,” said Karri Alexion-Tiernan, director of product management at Microsoft Corp.  “AdminStudio 10 provides benefits beyond one-time conversion, allowing customers the flexibility to create and manage both App-V and MSI packages.”

Microsoft Windows Installer, Application Compatibility and Deployments

AppTitude Virtual App Machine Cuts App-V Applicatio​n Prep Time by 50%

Taking advantage of application virtualization, but need to speed your App-V project? Today App-DNA announces the AppTitude Virtual App Machine, accelerating App-V application preparation up to 50% faster than manual processes.

AppTitude tests, remediates and auto-sequences applications. Using the AppTitude automation engine to leverage the Microsoft App-V Sequencer (that comes with App-V), enterprises can avoid purchasing additional proprietary packaging tools for virtualization projects. The AppTitude Virtual App Machine (VAM) produces fully-supported App-V ready packages. All of the application preparation in one solution saves time, learning curve, cost and risk.

AppTitude speeds App-V deployments, often aligned with Windows 7 initiatives. With a unique approach and unrivaled accuracy, AppTitude can

  • Assess an application’s suitability for virtualization
  • Identify the fixes needed to quickly create App-V ready application packages
  • Automate sequencing of App-V packages

AppTitude helps enterprises:

  • Improve resource management
  • Determine the overall time, cost and risk of virtualization projects
  • Save money- no need to buy a separate sequencing product

Visit the VAM web portal to learn more about the AppTitude Virtual App Machine.

Microsoft Windows Installer, Application Compatibility and Deployments

Download Windows Azure Jump Start Training Videos

Just before the Holidays, Microsoft hosted another new and exclusive Jump Start virtual training event, this time covering the Windows Azure Platform. “Building Cloud Applications using the Windows Azure Platform” was tailored for application architects and developers interested in leveraging the cloud. We are now pleased to announce that the professional videos recorded during the online class are available on Channel 9.

What’s the high-level overview?

  • The entire course is 12 hours long.
  • Every section is about an hour length, so it’s easy for you to find just what they need.
  • Every section is led by two of the most respected authorities on Microsoft development technologies, David S. Platt (popular Microsoft Press author from Rolling Thunder Computing ) and Manu Cohen-Yashar (Professor and Senior Consultant, SELA Technical College, Tel Aviv, IS) plus their dialog and banter is quite engaging!

Where do I go for this great training?

The link to session one below will provide you with everything you need, but if you want to pick out a specific topic a link to each topic is below:

For about anything Windows Azure, including links to trial accounts, available offers, and all Windows Azure training & certification options, go to the Microsoft Learning Windows Azure Training Portal.

Who is the target audience for this training?

  • Application Architects and Developers
  • Customers and partners already building a Windows Azure pilot project or planning to migrate an application to the Windows Azure Platform
  • Companies searching for real-world answers as they consider whether or not the Windows Azure Platform fits their needs.

Also read – Windows Azure Roadmap and Announcements – Microsoft PDC 2010

Enterprise Tech Microsoft Windows Installer, Application Compatibility and Deployments

How to Install SSL Certificates on Microsoft Servers – Free eBook

Windows administrators are continually tasked with securing servers and applications, including installing SSL certificates for authentication and encryption. This raises a number of questions for system administrators: which kind of SSL certificate should be used? How are SSL certificates installed? What is the Certificate Store? How does SSL work in Internet Information Server (IIS), Exchange Server, SQL Server and SharePoint?

How to Install SSL Certificates on Microsoft Servers  How to Install SSL Certificates on Microsoft Servers by security expert Dan Sullivan provides detailed step by step instructions on how to select, install and maintain SSL certificates in Microsoft environments. Whether you are just starting out and need to know how to acquire a certificate, or you are looking for tips on troubleshooting and maintaining existing certificate configurations, this guide has pragmatic and detailed information to help you.

This complete book includes the following chapters:

  • Chapter 1: Getting Started with SSL Certificates in Windows Server
  • Chapter 2: Understanding the Microsoft Certificate Store
  • Chapter 3: Using SSL Certificates in Microsoft Internet Information Server (IIS)
  • Chapter 4: Installing SSL Certificates in Microsoft Exchange Server, Microsoft SharePoint, and Microsoft SQL Server

Download the complete 71-page book today!

Note: You will need to create a profile in Realtime Nexus (The Digital Library for IT Pros) when you click the above link.

Courtesy: Realtime Nexus

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Microsoft Windows Installer, Application Compatibility and Deployments

Internet Explorer Web Application Compatibility Solved with AppTitude

Few days back, App-DNA released Internet Explorer web application testing and remediation features within the award-winning AppTitude application compatibility software platform. The new AppTitude module facilitates automated testing to enable enterprises to quickly determine the issues around moving web applications to Internet Explorer 8, often a significant challenge tied to an overall Windows 7 deployment. Click here to learn more about the new AppTitude web application compatibility module.

App-DNA survey research showed that more than 50% of respondents believe web application compatibility (IE8 compatibility) is a blocker for rolling out desktop applications. A surprising 30% were unsure. This shows that the first step in eliminating this perceived barrier is to get a view of IE8 compatibility upfront. AppTitude offers this capability in minutes through easy to read reports.

In a new benchmark test from Broadband Testing, analysis of web applications with AppTitude for IE8 suitability took a few seconds or several minutes to complete. This saves enterprises months of “guesswork” in determining the success of web applications. Click here to view the entire results of the Broadband Testing report.

Courtesy: App-DNA

Microsoft Windows Installer, Application Compatibility and Deployments

Windows 7 Deployment Learning Portal from Springboard Series Team

Windows 7 LogoGet helpful tips and tricks from Bytes by TechNet host Keith Combs and Senior Community Manager Stephen Rose on how to use the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) to create a technical proof of concept to help you see how Windows 7 and Microsoft Office 2010-as part of the Microsoft Optimized Desktop-will work in your environment.

About this Portal – The Deployment Learning Portal is an online assessment and learning tool administered by The Test Factory on behalf of Microsoft Ltd. It requires a separate registration and login process than the Windows Live login process used by TechNet. By registering for this experience, you accept that your data will be sent to The Test Factory, which is located in the United Kingdom.

Register for this Portal here –

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Windows Installer, Application Compatibility and Deployments

Webinar: Expanding Agile Practices to Software Installation Development

Commercial and enterprise developers face the challenge of developing and deploying new applications with agility. An important part of agile methodologies is the ability to quickly add and test new features, and deploy those features for immediate business use. Watch this Webinar from Visual Studio Magazine to learn how to build software installations according to agile best practices.

Webinar: Expanding Agile Practices to Software Installation Development
Date: Available to view now

In this on-demand Webinar from Visual Studio Magazine, learn about the challenges that agile teams face in building and deploying applications rapidly and how best practices in installation development strategy and technology are key to the success of any agile development team.

Learn how:

  • Agile methodologies are designed to support rapid application building and deployment at any time
  • Application installation development has moved from an individual to a team effort
  • Best practices can accelerate application building and deployment while also ensuring a high-quality installation experience
Best Practices Enterprise Tech Microsoft Windows Installer, Application Compatibility and Deployments

Download Best Practices Analyzers – Exchange & Unified Communications

Best Practice Analyzers are free tools available for most Microsoft Enterprise products and they are used to determine the overall health of your platform. The tools perform read only scans against your environment’s servers and identify items that do not conform to Microsoft best practices. They should be run on a regular basis as part of your standard operations maintenance plan. Here are some tools for the Exchange, Unified Communications, Sharepoint, Project Server and Office System.

Microsoft Exchange Best Practices Analyzer v2.8The Microsoft Exchange Best Practices Analyzer is designed for administrators who want to determine the overall health of their Exchange servers and topology. The tool scans Exchange servers and identifies items that do not conform to Microsoft best practices. The Exchange Best Practices Analyzer programmatic-ally collects settings and values from data repositories such as Active Directory, registry, metabase and performance monitor. Once collected, a set of comprehensive ‘best practice’ rules are applied to the topology. Administrators running this tool will get a detailed report listing the recommendations that can be made to the environment to achieve greater performance, scalability and uptime.

Office Communications Server 2007 Best Practices Analyzer – The Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 Best Practices Analyzer Tool is a diagnostic tool that gathers configuration information from a Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 and 2007 R2 environments and determines whether the configuration is set according to Microsoft best practices. You can install the tool on a client computer that runs Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0, or on a server that runs Office Communications Server.

The tool uses a set of configuration files to gather information from the Office Communications Server 2007 or 2007 R2 environment. It compares this data against a set of pre-defined rules for Office Communications Server, and reports potential issues. For every issue reported, the tool provides the current configuration in the Office Communications Server environment, and the recommended configuration. With the proper network access, the tool can examine your Active Directory and Office Communications Server 2007 or 2007 R2 servers to do the following:

  • Proactively perform health checks, verifying that the configuration is set according to recommended best practices
  • Generate a list of issues, such as suboptimal configuration settings or unsupported or not recommended options
  • Judge the general health of a system
  • Help troubleshoot specific problems
  • Prompt you to download updates if they are available
  • Provide online and local documentation about reported issues, including troubleshooting tips
  • Generate configuration information that can be captured for later review

Microsoft Best Practices Analyzer for Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 and the 2007 Microsoft Office System – The Microsoft Best Practices Analyzer for Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 and the 2007 Microsoft Office System Best Practices Analyzer programmatically collects settings and values from data repositories such as MS SQL, registry, metabase and performance monitor. Once collected, a set of comprehensive ‘best practice’ rules are applied to the topology.

Administrators running this tool will get a detailed report listing the recommendations that can be made to the environment to achieve greater performance, scalability and uptime.

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