I'm very happy to announce that today we released the 1.0 version of the Microsoft Best Practices Analyzer to the web.

The Microsoft Best Practices Analyzer is a tool and framework that allows for the analysis of system elements against predefined "rules" to help users optimize their configurations and identify any known issues.  The Microsoft BPA tool has a plug-in architecture and updater component that enables users to write their own BPA plug-ins and augment the rules documents of the plug-ins that are already released.  If you decide to, you can contribute those changes you made back to the community, and everyone with the tool installed will automatically be notified that there are new plugins available.

This release of the Microsoft BPA also includes a sample plug-in for the basic analysis of ASP.NET 2.0 configuration files.  We're actively looking for more rules--so if you have some--let me know!

The "official" signed version of the tool is available from MSDownloads (here), but the best place to go for the tool is the tool's official site on CodePlex:

http://www.codeplex.com/Wiki/View.aspx?ProjectName=BPAEngine

From the CodePlex site, you can file bugs on the tool, submit rules suggestions, get information on how to write new rules, and even download the source code for the ASP.NET 2.0 configuration plug-in (to help you write your own plug-in!)

Finally, a huge thanks to the Exchange Best Practices Analyzer team!  Most of this tool comes directly from the team that wrote the Exchange BPA tool, which has been used as a basis for a ton of BPA tools from Microsoft that have helped so many people.  This tool just basically adds a little bit to the awesome work that they contributed, and I hope that what my team was able to bring to the table can make sure that even more people can get value out of their hard work.