Brian Johnson's Startup Developer Blog



    Microsoft Security Essentials for Small Business


    Eric Ligman announced today that Microsoft Security Essentials will be available to small business for free in October. I use Microsoft Security Essentials on all the machines in my house and it’s saved our bacon a number of times. Check out Eric’s post on the solution for small business and the other options that are available.

    Announcing: Microsoft Security Essentials available FREE to Small Businesses in October!

    Here is some great news for all of the small businesses out there from Microsoft that I am very happy to be able to tell you about!

    As we all know, small businesses are under incredible pressure to:

    1. Reduce operating costs
    2. Improve productivity
    3. Grow their business
    4. Do all of this in a very challenging economic climate

    It’s also no secret that most small businesses today do not have a dedicated IT professional on staff to manage their IT resources (which you may recall is why we originally launched the Small Business Specialist Community of partners worldwide). Small business owners and employees are focused on running their business, not managing complicated IT infrastructure.

    imageFor those reasons, we are extremely excited today to let you know that Microsoft is making its Microsoft Security Essentials available to small businesses on up to 10 PCs for FREE, beginning in early October!  By providing Microsoft Security Essentials to small businesses free of charge, Microsoft extends its commitment to help these companies save money and grow their business by offering no-cost protection from viruses, spyware and other malicious threats.


    Free e-book Writing Secure Code for Windows Vista


    I was technical editor of the second edition of Writing Secure Code and I'm really proud of that fact. This is a great offer. Enjoy! 

    Microsoft Press - Writing Secure Code for Windows Vista

    Celebrating 25 years

    For 25 years, Microsoft Press books have focused on helping you take your skills and knowledge to the next level. Celebrate our 25th Anniversary with a "Free E-Book of the Month" offer! Simply sign up for the Microsoft Press Book Connection Newsletter for notification of offers, register, and download the selection of the month.

    Writing Secure Code for Windows Vista

    By Michael Howard and David LeBlanc
    ISBN: 9780735623934

    This reference is ideal for developers who understand the fundamentals of Windows programming and APIs. It complements Writing Secure Code, examining the delta between Windows XP and Windows Vista security. For more information or to buy the print version of this title, visit the Microsoft Learning website .


    Microsoft Security Threat Research


    One of the things you need to do to keep your software safe is to be aware of trends and vulnerabilities that are currently being exploited by attackers.

    Today I followed a link to the Microsoft Malware Protection Center from one of my friends on Twitter. Excellent find. This is a fantastic resource with tons of good information. (I've been out of the security business for way too long.)

    The Latest Microsoft Security Intelligence Report

    The Microsoft Security Intelligence Report (SIR) provides an in-depth perspective on the changing threat landscape including software vulnerability disclosures and exploits, malicious software (malware), and potentially unwanted software. Using data derived from hundreds of millions of Windows users, and some of the busiest online services on the Internet, this report also provides a detailed analysis of the threat landscape and the changing face of threats and countermeasures and includes updated data on privacy and breach notifications.


    PDC 2005 Security Symposium


    Today we posted a page with information about the PDC 2005 Security Symposium (Friday, September 16th at the PDC). This is a great opportunity to hear some of the top security people from Microsoft discuss security issues. Here's the link to the page:

    Security Developer Center: PDC 2005 Security Symposium
    Want to learn more about what it takes to build security into each phase of software development? Come hear some insider tips and best practices from Microsoft and industry developers that are doing just that – building security into the software development process using the Microsoft Security Development Lifecycle (SDL) as their model. The SDL is a process that Microsoft implemented to provide customers with high quality software that is meticulously engineered and rigorously tested to help withstand malicious attack.

    I'll update that page with addional resources as they come available. For now, be sure to review the page and read the SDL Document as prep for the symposium. If you're not going to the PDC, stay tuned and I'll try to get as much information about these topics as I can added to the page.


    Microsoft Brings .NET to Katrina Relief Effort

    Good story in eWeek about some of the Microsoft efforts around Katrina.
    Microsoft Brings .NET to Katrina Relief Effort
    A group of Microsoft technologists quickly deployed to contribute their time and talent to the relief effort, and decided to develop a Web site and supporting applications to help Katrina evacuees reach out to relatives and friends and also enable families to locate people they have not heard from since the hurricane hit, said Jim Carroll, chief architect and project manager for the system, known as KatrinaSafe.
    The calls for help inside Microsoft went out and were answered incredibly quickly. Robert Scoble has more on similar efforts here.

    Microsoft Response to Hurricane Katrina

    The Microsoft Disaster Relief Page was updated tonight with a statement about Hurricane Katrina.
    Microsoft Response to Hurricane Katrina
    Published: August 31, 2005
    Every one of us at Microsoft is deeply saddened by the destruction of property and personal lives in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, and our hearts go out to the hundreds of thousands of people who have been affected by the storm and its aftermath.
    This page has links to many different relief agencies, so this is a good place to start if you're considering a contribution.

    Windows Server 2003 R2 RC 0

    Windows Server 2003 R2 RC 0 is available for download. You can get more information here:
    Windows Server 2003 R2 Release Candidate 0
    Try Windows Server 2003 R2 RC0 today and extend your connectivity and control to data and applications throughout and beyond your organization.
    This page contains links to information about new features, a reviewer's guide, a FAQ, and a product overview. There's additional infomation available on the TechNet Windows Server 2003 R2 Beta Roadmap page.

    This is the introduction from the Product Overview page:
    Windows Server 2003 R2 is an update release of the award-winning Windows Server 2003 operating system. Built on Windows Server 2003 with Service Pack 1 (SP1), Windows Server 2003 R2 takes advantage of the stability and security of a proven code base while extending connectivity and control into new areas. Windows Server 2003 R2 offers all the benefits of Windows Server 2003 SP1 while greatly improving branch office server solutions, identity and access management, storage setup and management, and application development inside and outside your organization's traditional boundaries. Windows Server 2003 R2 is easy to integrate into an existing Windows Server 2003 environment as it has the same application compatibility, manageability, and serviceability as the existing servers with SP1.

    Understanding Security in IE 6

    The IE team has published a new whitepaper describing IE 6 security. Get it here:
    Understanding Security in Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 in Windows XP SP2
    Web browser security is a major concern for individuals and organizations. Each time a new vulnerability is found, news headlines proclaim dire warnings. As a result of their importance, security issues dominate competitive browser analysis and discussions, overshadow debate about their respective features and functionality. As the market share leader in Web browser software, Internet Explorer (IE) is often the subject of media scrutiny. Since IE is so prevalent, it is an attractive target for hackers to attack, and has come to be considered, in some circles, insecure. This paper examines the real state of Web browser security and the correlation between a browsers vulnerability and its advanced functionality.
    This paper isn't targeted at developers, but it gives a good overview of the security features in the browser.

    Visual Studio 2005 Launch Information

    DevDiv VP Somasegar has posted information about the Visual Studio 2005 launch. Check it out here:
    Visual Studio 2005 update
    We are now about 77 days from the November 7, 2005 launch of Visual Studio 2005, one of the most significant releases in the history of the Developer Division. We have been releasing Community Technology Previews regularly since Beta 2 and will have one coming out in August as well. I wanted to take a moment and update you on our progress towards shipping the final product....
    There's a lot more information in the post, so be sure to read it all.

    Visio Connector Updated for MBSA 2.0

    I've blogged before about the Visio Connector for MBSA. Well, I ran into Sanjay Puri a while back and he let me know that this tool has been updated for MBSA 2.0. Here's a link to the download and the details:
    Visio Connector for Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer (MBSA)
    The Visio Connector for MBSA (Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer) is a Visio COM add-in that allows IT administrators to view the results of an MBSA network scan on a Visio network diagram.
    This article on TechNet has a picture to take a look at and more details about the tool. As I mentioned before, this tool is a great way to visualize potential security deficiencies your network.
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