I received my custom advance order of six hundred of these - one for each attendee of the SoCal .NET Technical Summit coming up this Saturday in Long Beach, CA. If you're like me and lack the patience (and phat pipes) to download several Gigabytes of installation files, you can pick up your very own official Beta 2 disk set this Saturday and also catch great .NET sessions presented by some of the industry's finest speakers for just $99! I blogged about this prestigious event previously but didn't mention the Beta 2 disk sets then (I wasn't sure at the time that I would actually be able to get them in time).

So what do you get in the officially manufactured Visual Studio 2005 Beta 2 disk sets?

Everything comes inside of a black colored hard plastic case similar to what DVDs and Playstation 2 games ship in. The printed slip cover is primarily dark blue. On the front are the typical Visual Studio branding imagery, the MS logo and the title "Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 Beta 2". On the back are the minimum system requirements (600MHz processor, Windows XP Service Pack 2, Windows 2000 Service Pack 4 or Windows Server 2003 operating system, 256MB RAM, 2 GB available hard-disk space, DVD-ROM, etc.), handy URLs, fine print and the Part No. X11-22003.

Inside, there is a printed insert with a Greetings! notice from Soma and three disks held in place by a dual-clasp plastic mechanism of a kind that I haven't seen previously. The three disks are a DVD-ROM (though it isn't labelled as such) of Visual Studio 2005 Team Suite Beta 2 (3.75 GB, includes Visual Studio 2005), a DVD-ROM (labelled with the DVD-ROM logo) of SQL Server 2005 Developer Editon Community Technology Preview (847MB, labelled 32-bit version only and 03/05 though it's reputedly and dated the April edition) and lastly, a CD-ROM of Visual Studio 2005 Team Foundation Server Beta 2 (273 MB, includes Team Foundation Client).

Now that I've whetted your appetite, don't forget you can walk away with your very own Beta 2 disk set in hand on Saturday. It's not too late to register for just $99! We'll see you there...