Dan English's BI Blog

Welcome to my random thoughts in regards to Business Intelligence, databases, and other technologies

Archive for December, 2007

PerformancePoint Server Team Vision Video

Posted by denglishbi on December 6, 2007

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Office SharePoint Server 2007 Training

Posted by denglishbi on December 6, 2007

I love free training opportunities.  Microsoft has now released a network (portal) or a standalone client version of some Office SharePoint Server 2007 training materials.  The training includes videos, interactive tutorials, and articles.  The Training topics lead you step-by-step through beginning to advanced features, including Collaboration, Business Processes and Forms, Portals and Personalization, Search, Business Intelligence and Enterprise Content Management.  I am current in the process of download the material to take a look at it.

The Standalone Edition is accessed through your browser after you install the application on your personal computer. If you are a server administrator and want to install the Portal Edition to your Office SharePoint Server site, click here. The Portal Edition allows you to add content to help your users learn about the rich features of Office SharePoint Server 2007.

Take a look for yourself if you are interested:

Office SharePoint Server 2007 Training (Standalone Edition)

Office SharePoint Server 2007 Training (network)

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Updated Microsoft Download Center Beta Preview

Posted by denglishbi on December 5, 2007

Just got invited to the beta of the new Microsoft Download Center.  Me download files…crazy.  This is probably why my RSS feed into the existing download site no longer works (no longer getting any updates pulled into RSS Bandit:( ).

It did require me to install Silverlight, but so far it seems okay but I think it is definitely slower.  I would say skip all of the eye candy and keep it simple.  I get very impatient waiting for a site to load.  I just want to see what is new and start downloading.


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Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow

Posted by denglishbi on December 5, 2007

Yesterday we got another 4 to 6 inches of snow.  The drive home from the client was awful.  I spent 2 1/2 hours on the road.  An hour of that was just waiting in the line in Bloomington to get onto 35W!  Nothing like the first snowfall on a workday and driving home.  At least I got to go sledding with my daughter, so that made up for the awful drive.

The drive in this morning wasn’t too bad, made sure I left early.  Plus the local BI User Group is tonight so I want to get an early start.

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Microsoft SQL Server 2008 CTP (Nov 2007) VHD now available

Posted by denglishbi on December 5, 2007

A VHD of the latest SQL Server CTP is now available for download if you want to test it out.  I haven’t had a chance to setup the new CTP yet, so I am in the process of downloading this one.  Thanks Microsoft:)

Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Community Technology Preview (November 2007) VHD

Brief Description

This download comes as a pre-configured VHD. This allows you to trial SQL Server 2008 CTP in a virtual environment.

Quick Details

Version: 1.1

Date Published: 12/4/2007

Language: English

Download Size: 180.6 MB – 2280.6 MB*

*Download size depends on selected download components.


SQL Server 2008, the next release of Microsoft SQL Server, will provide a comprehensive data platform that is more secure, reliable, manageable and scalable for your mission critical applications, while enabling developers to create new applications that can store and consume any type of data on any device, and enabling all your users to make informed decisions with relevant insights.

System Requirements
  • Supported Operating Systems: Windows Server 2003; Windows Vista; Windows XP

This is a pre-configured VHD image that requires Virtual Server 2005 R2 installed on your system. Please refer to the Virtual Server 2005 R2 System requirements page here.
In addition to the System Requirements for Virtual Server 2005 R2, you will need additional disk and memory resources for running the virtual machine. This VHD is pre-configured to use approximately 10GB of hard disk space and approximately 512MB of memory.
To learn more about the full System Requirements for running SQL Server 2008 CTP, see the system requirements page.


In order to use this evaluation package you will need to have Microsoft® Virtual Server 2005 R2 installed on a physical machine. If you do not have Virtual Server installed you can get this product free of charge from www.microsoft.com/virtualserver. Details of how to install Virtual Server 2005 R2 are included in the download and documentation that accompanies the product.
You will also find a readme document as a part of the download. Please refer to this for additional details on how to extract and use the VHD as a part of the download.

Files in This Download

The links in this section correspond to separate files available in this download. Download the files most appropriate for you.

File Name (File Size)

Win03_KatmaiNovCTP.part1.exe (700.0 MB)

Win03_KatmaiNovCTP.part2.rar (700.0 MB)

Win03_KatmaiNovCTP.part3.rar (700.0 MB)

Win03_KatmaiNovCTP.part4.rar (180.6 MB)


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2008 Releases and Launches

Posted by denglishbi on December 4, 2007

At the last MPLS SQL Server User Group they said that Windows Server 2008 will be available in January and SQL Server 2008 will be mid June.  The national launch for all of the 2008 products is February 27 in Los Angeles and the MPLS local launch will be in April.  They stated that the Nov CTP5 of SQL Server is around 80% complete and the next CTP will have all of the functionality in it.  Visual Studio 2008 was release on November 19.  Learn more about the new version of VS 2008:


The Wait for Visual Studio 2008 is Over!

On Monday, Nov. 19, Microsoft announced that Visual Studio 2008 and the .NET Framework 3.5 were released to manufacturing (RTM). With more than 250 new features,Visual Studio 2008 includes significant enhancements in every edition, including Visual Studio Express and Visual Studio Team System. Developers of all levels – from hobbyists to enterprise development teams – now have a consistent, secure and reliable solution for developing applications for the latest platforms: the Web, Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008, the 2007 Office system, and beyond. Learn more about Visual Studio 2008.

For help with uninstalling prerelease versions of Visual Studio 2008, see Uninstalling Previous Versions of Visual Studio 2008.

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Weekly Downloads for WE 12/01/2007

Posted by denglishbi on December 3, 2007

I must admit that I am constantly on the lookout for new things to download. Here is what I downloaded this past week:

  • SQL Server 2005 Books Online (September 2007) – Download an updated version of the documentation and tutorials for Microsoft SQL Server 2005. See the "Additional Information" section for an update on SQL Server Express Books Online. For a list of updated topics, see "New and Updated Books Online Topics (15 September 2007)."
  • Microsoft Office Mobile 6.1: Upgrade for Microsoft Office 2007 file formats If you’ve got a Windows Mobile 5.0 or Windows Mobile 6 phone or PDA, you’ll want to grab this update. The update is free for anyone who has an existing copy of Office Mobile, which should cover most Windows Mobile users. It adds support for Office 2007 documents including DOCX, XLSX and PPTX files. There’s also enhanced viewing capabilities for Excel Mobile, the ability to add SmartArt in PowerPoint Mobile. Users can also view and extract files from ZIP folders.
  • Free Download Manager v2.5 – FDM accelerates downloads by splitting files into sections and then downloading them simultaneously. As a result download speed increases up to 600%, or even more! FDM can also resume broken downloads so you needn’t start downloading from the beginning after casual interruption. FDM lets you download files and whole web sites from any remote server via HTTP, HTTPS and FTP. You can also download files using BitTorrent protocol.
  • Windows Live Writer – Windows Live Writer is a desktop application that makes it easier to compose compelling blog posts using Windows Live Spaces or your current blog service. Blogging has turned the web into a two-way communications medium. Our goal in creating Writer is to help make blogging more powerful, intuitive, and fun for everyone. Writer has lots of features which we hope make for a better blogging experience.
  • SQL Server 2008 – Table valued parameters (Channel9 Screencast) – If you have to insert more than one row of data in a Table, you end up executing the insert statement / stored procedure as many times for each row, with Table-valued parameters you can send multiple rows of data to a single TSQL statement or stored procedure without creating temp tables or doing multiple round trips. Table-valued parameters are a new parameter type in SQL Server 2008 and are declared by using user-defined table types.

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Here we go…

Posted by denglishbi on December 2, 2007

It is time for me to start a blog. I have been wanting to do this for a long time.  For the most part this blog is going to be technical in nature and will talk about Business Intelligence and Database related topics (mainly in regards to Microsoft products).
We got about eight inches of snow yesterday, so I thought it was a perfect time to take a look at the Windows Live Spaces and startup a blog finally.  Some of the items that get posted will be review or known items for some, but I just want to make sure everyone is aware of them, so I apologize in advance.
I am just downloading the Windows Live Writer application to see how that differs from entering the blog directly into the site.  I am assuming it will be useful so I can work on postings offline and then upload them when I am ready and connected.  Now I need to figure out where I should begin and what topic(s) to pick.

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