Oct 25, 2004

New Microsoft SQL Server 2005 webcasts available

In December, Microsoft is running a series of webcasts to take a look at several new features in the upcoming SQL Server 2005 (Yukon) edition. Check out this site for detail and links to the various webcasts. 15 different sessions in all.

Topics include - SQL Reporting Services, SQL Analysis Services, Service Broker, web services, the new Management Studio environment, .Net integration, XML, ADO.Net 2.0, the new security model, Integration Services (formerly DTS), Replication and Notification Services.

Looks like alot of great info. I know I love being the first on the block to get a sneak peak at new technology. So make sure you sign up today!

Oct 14, 2004

Search your PC with the power of Google!

Just released today is the beta edition of Google's new Desktop Search. This is a little app that you download and install on your PC. When your first start it up, it runs a one-time process where it scans and builds an index of files, emails, and web history on your PC. Then you use a browser interface to search this index with the same lightning fast speed that you search the Internet with. Why has it taken so long for us to get something like this??

Currently Google Desktop Search scans the following types of items:
  • Outlook / Outlook Express email messages
  • AOL Instant Messenger conversations
  • Internet Explorer pages (it caches pages you have visited)
  • Text files
  • Word documents
  • Excel spreadsheets
  • Powerpoint files
For other types of files (PDF's, MP3's, etc.) , its supposed to at least index the file names. Google Labs will be improving this product over time and adding in more features as well as the ability to search more types of files.

I've just now installed it and the index is currently building. I'll provide more info after i've been able to play with it for a while but so far i'm very impressed. Getting the instant results of a search of my Outlook email is amazing.

Here are some more links...

Get the download
The About and FAQ page
Some screenshots
Help

New "Report Packs" for SQL Server Reporting Services

I wrote about Microsoft SQL Reporting Services in a previous article. It's a fairly new report development and web-based delivery platform for reporting.

Microsoft has just release some new "Report Packs" for SQL Reporting Services. These Report Packs are collections of sample reports. They are available on the SQL Reporting Services download page. There are 3 packs avaiable:
Each pack contains 6 different sample reports. These will be a big help in learning the product, providing demos to your clients plus they'll give you a good head-start on creating similar reports. I'd really like to see some Great Plains reports that work with SQL Reporting Services.

Oct 12, 2004

Two-day Sharepoint Development Workshop from Microsoft

The Microsoft Partner Readiness site is promoting a new two-day workshop on Sharepoint site development and customization. Looks like they cover alot of ground in two days. They even mention working with a Sharepoint customization for Great Plains.

This would be a great class for anyone looking to build customization for MBS Business Portal as well, since Sharepoint is the backbone of Business Portal. I'm going to be attending the session in Falls Church, VA.

It says the class is available to Microsoft Gold level Partners only. Good price though - only $165 with the following promo code - USPRDSPSW. There are many other Sharepoint related sessions available. Browse to the main page and then hover your mouse over the "Product & Solution Readiness" link on the upper left side of the page. This will blow out the full menu of seminars that are available.

Oct 8, 2004

FRx WebView for Great Plains

Since i've been working with this product quite a bit recently, i just thought i'd throw an article out here with a little information about it. For those of you not familiar with FRx, it is a financial report writing tool from Microsoft (via FRx Software) that works with Great Plains, Solomon and I believe Navision as well.

FRx WebView (or WebPort) is a web-based report delivery application. You can generate your financial reports out of FRx as you normally would and you can also select to publish them to the web. Once the report has been published from FRx, users can log into the web application and view their reports. From the website you can also convert the report into a PDF and then print or save it locally if you want it.

FRx WebView has a Web Administrator configuration tool that you use to setup users and groups in order to control security to the reports. You can also setup different folders to hold reports intended for different audiences and then uses security groups to restrict access as needed.