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  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    TechDays 2011: developer session recordings and content online


    If you missed TechDays 2011, there is no way to bring you back the whole experience. That’s the bad news, the good news however is that we go a long way and bring you a recorded video of each of the sessions so you can learn from the best. From now on, you can browse all the sessions, view them online or download to your favorite media player and download the slides.
    With top speakers like Scott Hanselman, Jeff Prosise, Ingo Rammer, Vittorio Bertocci, Glenn Block, Christian Weyer, Hadi Hariri, …. and so many more. The event welcomed over 40 different speakers!

    Check out our photos of the event and a short video compilation below. You can also view the testimonials video from attendees here.

    TechDays 2011 Compilation Video

    How is the content structured?

    On the TechDays website you can find the video recordings split up by Developer/IT-Professional and then further by track.

    Next to the tracks you can also browse scenarios:

    • Application Lifecycle Management – sessions from the ALM deep dive and the normal conference around Visual Studio ALM.
    • Cloud – this scenario delivers you sessions that go from a general overview of the Windows Azure platform, updates in Windows Azure 1.3, to SaaS, SQL Azure, on- and off-premise and AppFabric.

    Browsing the content on Channel 9

    Channel 9  TechDays 2011
    (note: Channel 9 contains all developer sessions, for IT-Professional content you can find it on TechNet Edge)

    All session videos lead you to a Channel 9 TechDays 2011 Event page. Channel 9 also has a landing page for the whole event, which allows you to browse and do free-text search.
    You can also take advantage of commenting on the video and in this way have a conversation with other viewers or even get feedback from some of the speakers.

    Happy learning!

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    New helps you implement IE9 pinning and instrumentation


    Click and drag me to pin this site! delivers you tools, content and code guidance to help you with implementing Internet Explorer 9 Site Pinning features. While you can already find quite some information on the matter on MSDN, this site goes an extra step and is totally worth a visit.

    What does the site provide?

    The information is nicely structured in seven steps, going from adding a simple hi-res icon to sharing and promoting it on the IE Gallery.

    1. Create a hi-res favicon: integrating the X-Icon editor HTML5 tool, you can upload a visual and create your own high-res icon on the fly. Source sample code is also provided so you can setup basic pinning using the meta tags or integrating the jQuery Pinify plugin.
    2. Add a Jump List: source code samples in JavaScript or with the jQuery plugin are shown and explained, both for static and dynamic jump lists.
    3. Setup notifications: notifications allow you to use icon overlay to inform the user of an up. I personally use this a lot with social networking sites where I am notified of new messages.
    4. Use thumbnail preview controls: thumbnail controls allow users to do actions on your site through the thumbnail preview. Very useful for controlling the play/pause of a video or music.
    5. Let users discover it: test if the user is browsing your site through a pinned version, if not you have some options to propose pinning to the end user.
    6. Measure your success (see below)
    7. Share and promote: show your site on the IE Gallery. Note that for Belgium we have both Belgium Dutch and Belgium French galleries.

    Some new Belgian cases

    With the launch of Internet Explorer 9 where we had more than ten Belgian partners and sites implement site pinning. These included, Le Soir, Zita, and many more. In the meantime a few others have joined the club out of which:

    De Morgen –

    image implements dynamic jump lists and notification overlay.

    Measure usage statistics

    One of the things I like to emphasize when working with partners that implement site pinning is the next step: make sure you measure its success. Otherwise, how are you going to decide for any evolution of the features in the future? For example if you start simple with pinning and some static jum plists, having usage statistics might be able to help you make a business case to go the next level: notifications, dynamic jum plists and so forth. Again for this part of the job, has the help: download the white paper to learn more about integrating analytics and instrumentation.
    Recommended read: the Engineering IE blog article “ 50% More Engagement in 15 Minutes or Less through Pinning”.

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Update to Windows Azure Toolkit for Windows Phone 7 includes ACS and Storage Queues


    Earlier this week at TechEd North America, an update to the Windows Azure Toolkit for Windows Phone 7 has been released (that toolkit is a mouthful Smile!). With this third release in just two months, the toolkit get some nice extra enhancements to help you build Windows Phone 7 apps taking advantage of Windows Azure, storage and integration with the Access Control Service (ACS) 2.0. Since version 1.1 there is also out of the box support for the Microsoft Push Notification Service.

    What is it?
    This toolkit contains Visual Studio project templates, class libraries optimized for use on the phone for storage and membership services, a sample application and documentation. The objective of the toolkit is making it easy and quick for you to create Windows Phone applications leveraging Microsoft’s cloud services.

    New in v1.2:

    • Integration with the Access Control Service (ACS) 2.0. With Windows Identify Foundation (WIF) it supports sign-in and authorization via Windows Live ID, Facebook, Google and Yahoo in your phone apps.
    • Support for Windows Azure Storage Queues
    • Improved design for the web app (‘metro’ inspired)


  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Quick tip (link): Enterprise Library 5.0 Silverlight Integration Pack released


    The Patterns & Practices team has released Silverlight Integration Pack for the Microsoft Enterprise Library.

    What is it and what’s inside?

    Enterprise Library application blocks are a very popular download for enterprise developers, providing guidance and reusable components.

    The Silverlight Integration Pack contains a set of building blocks focusing on Line-of-business (LOB) Silverlight applications, porting the desktop version and adding functionality for Silverlight projects. Building blocks include Validation Application Block, Logging, Exception Handling Block, Caching Application Block, Interception & Policy Injection Application Block, Configuration support and a reference application.

    NuGet support
    Both Enterprise Library 5.0 and Enterprise Library 5.0 Silverlight Integration Pack are available as Windows Installer Packages (MSI) via MSDN or as NuGet packages. The configuration tool is also available as a Visual Studio extension package (VSIX) from the Visual Studio Gallery.

    >> Go to the original article:


    Quick tip posts are short, useful posts pointing to content and tricks that might otherwise get lost in a typical 140 chars message on Twitterverse.

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Microsoft Webcafe on 26 May 2011 – Register for sessions and special beer tasting activity


    Our third Microsoft Webcafe is taking place on May 26th in Mons at the Microsoft Innovation Center. Register today for this after-work tech informal meetup with web, phone and UX professionals. It’s free! And because it’s Belgium, what better than adding beer tasting activity to the mix?

    What’s on the menu for Microsoft Webcafe nr 3?

    As usual, we have a mix of partner and community presentations around real projects, as well as content updates from Microsoft.
    This time we have also added a fun ‘café’ related activity: two beer sommeliers will join us during the breaks to teach us all about beers. You can find more about the beer process and taste up to 15 different sorts of beer during the event. That’s enough information we want to share about this, do expect some pretty nice surprises.

    Special: prize draw of Dazzlepad Tundra Table PC 
    In addition, there will be a very nice prize draw: it’s your chance to win a dazzlepad Tundra tablet PC. Your presence is your chance to win!

    Presentations: it’s all about sharing content and projects

    What is the MIC?
    Welcome by our host of the Webcafe’s event. Learn what the Microsoft Innovation Center does and how it can be useful for you.

    Presented by: David Hernie (Microsoft Innovation Center)

    FeedTso, a social feedreader for Windows Phone 7

    A journey in the development of WP7 application, mainly from the UI and User Experience design stand point. We'll be sharing some tips on how to make a WP7 that looks good.

    Presented by: Daniela Panfili and Simone Chiaretta


    SmartKwizz is the powerful combination of a self-service platform hosted in Windows Azure and a mobile application for Windows Phone 7 and other smartphones.
    Learn how this application leverages ASP.NET, Silverlight and Bing Maps, Windows PHone 7 and Windows Azure.

    Presented by: Rénald Nollet (Technical Director at c-services, Cronos company based in Luxembourg)

    Hidden gems at MIX11 Last month’s MIX11 web conference brought a myriad of Microsoft web and phone announcements. In this session we take a look at the major news and look for those hidden gems you should not miss.

    Presented by: Katrien De Graeve (Microsoft Belux)

    Agenda and practical's

    Date: Thursday May 26th 2011

    17h - 17.30h: Welcome
    17.30 - 18.15h: 10 minute sessions part 1
    18.15h - 19h: food & drinks with beer tasting
    19h - 19.45h: 10 minute sessions part 2
    19.45h – 22h: food & drinks with beer tasting

    Microsoft Innovation Center Mons
    Parc Initialis, Boulevard Initialis 1 1
    7000 Mons

    >> Register and join us!

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Windows Azure Toolkits for iOS, Android, and WP7


    As announced on the Official Microsoft Blog, the Windows Azure Toolkit for iOS (v1.0.0) are now available. The toolkit contains resources and services designed to make it easier for iOS developers to use Windows Azure.  This release pushes forward the momentum around Mobile + Cloud, and expands it such that we can make it easier to target Windows Azure by offering native libraries for non-Microsoft platforms.

    You can see the official announcements here:

    Last March we released the Windows Azure Toolkit for Windows Phone 7, which not only provided a set of generic services for Windows Azure but also provided resources to build native applications for Windows Phone 7 that target those services.

    You can get the Windows Azure Toolkit for iOS—and all the source code—on github:

    The Windows Azure Toolkit for iOS works in two ways: you access Windows Azure storage directly, or alternatively, can go through a proxy service. The proxy service code is the same code as used in the Windows Azure Toolkit for Windows Phone 7 and negates the need for the developer to store the Azure storage credentials locally on the device.

    In addition to the iOS toolkit release, we are also excited to share the news that development for the Windows Azure Toolkit for Android has already begun – we expect to ship the first version next Month.

    Here are some resources to help you get started:

    You can start building your application on Windows Azure in 3 simple and easy to do steps:

    1. Download the Tools:

    Get Visual Studio Express and the Windows Azure Tools for Visual Studio to start building and debugging applications for the Windows Azure Platform If you have already Visual Studio installed you can download the tools directly from Also download the Windows Azure Toolkit for Windows Phone 7.

    2. Setup an Account:

    Set up an account and obtain a free subscription for accessing the online portals for Windows Azure, SQL Azure and Windows Azure AppFabric. You can learn more about the accounts or you can sign up directly and get the trial

    3. Create your First application and Deploy it on the Windows Azure Platform:

    First learn how to create a simple ASP.NET application in Visual Studio for Windows Azure on your local machine Once successfully created, learn how to deploy this application on the Windows Azure Platform

    When all steps are executed successfully you should have running your first mobile application on the Windows Azure Platform!

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Register for MSDN Belux webcasts on SQL Server self-service BI, FAST Search Server 2010 and Windows Azure


    Join us for the bi-weekly webcasts, delivered live and directly to your computer.

    May 10, 2011: SQL Server self-service BI


    In this fast paced and ever changing world, insight in your company’s data becomes more and more crucial to stay ahead. Power users need this insight in data now, not in the next week or month. Due to this trend, BI has to evolve into a more mobile, quick and personal approach. Microsoft addresses this need for self-service BI for Power Users with Report Builder 3.0 and PowerPivot. This session gives you a quick overview of the SQL Server BI stack and introduces you to the concepts of self-service BI.


    Foto LEMAIRE Luc

    Luc Lemaire
    is a Senior Architect at Ordina Belgium. During his 20 year career in IT he advised and assisted many companies with the introduction and optimization of new technology. As an MCT, MCSE and certified MCDBA since SQL Server 6.5 Luc knows the ins and outs of IT infrastructure and IT projects. He currently focuses on the Microsoft SQL Server stack and managing the life cycle of reporting and BI projects.

    14:00 – 15:30

    Attend this webcast and get a FREE "I have IT in my DNA" T-shirt!

    Register now

    May 24, 2011: FAST Search Server 2010 for SharePoint: a developers walkthrough

    Microsoft FAST Search Server 2010 for SharePoint extends the SharePoint search functionality and provides an exceptional search experience by incorporating features such as an extensible content processing pipeline, contextual search, extensible relevance models and an advanced query language. This session will introduce the FAST search platform from a developers perspective and will explore the different functionalities as well as talk about common developer tasks around Fast Search 2010 for SharePoint 2010 such as:
    - Configuration and extension of the FAST search webpart
    - Extending the content processing pipeline
    - Building search applications using the SharePoint object model combined with the capabilities of the FAST Query Language (FQL).

    Joris Poelmans works as ECM unit manager and SharePoint principal architect at RealDolmen (, a leading Belgian IT services company and Microsoft Gold Partner. His main competence area is Information Worker solutions, where he currently focuses on the SharePoint 2010 Products and Technologies platform. In October 2005, he was given the Microsoft MVP award for Windows SharePoint Services. He is also president of the Belgian Information Worker User Group ( which regularly organizes sessions about the SharePoint platform in general. He can be contacted through his blog at

    14:00 – 15:30

    Attend this webcast and get a FREE "Cloud Continuum" T-shirt!

    Register now

    June 7, 2011: Integration as a service - Creating hybrid solutions with the Windows Azure Platform

    There are plenty of business drivers for enterprises to consider a move the cloud, but at the same time there are plenty of reasons as well why these enterprises will not be able to move their entire stack in the short term. At least for the next ten years hybrid systems will be the defacto standard way of implementing cloud based systems in the corporate world. In this session I will show you around the different services, offered by the Windows Azure Platform, that ensure a seamless integration between cloud and on-premises resources.


    Yves Goeleven is a Windows Azure MVP and Solution Architect for Capgemini Belgium. His main focus is on the implementation of enterprise grade solutions on the Microsoft’s platform in corporate environments, based on both custom software development practices as well as platform services offered by Microsoft, including for example the Windows Azure Platform and xRM.

    14:00 – 15:30

    Attend this webcast and get a FREE Windows Azure hat!

    Register now

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Windows Phone 7 “Mango”: what’s coming for app developers


    Last week at MIX11 we announced the next update coming to Windows Phone 7. Joe Belfiore, overseeing Windows Phone Program Management came on stage to address the audience eager for more on Windows Phone. While starting with an update on why some ‘Nodo’ updates are taking longer than expected, Joe then switched to bringing us the new stuff.
    As a developer, you can start getting up to date with the latest capabilities by watching or downloading the sessions covering the new APIs and capabilities given during MIX11.


    The main announcements

    • Internet Explorer 9 coming to Windows Phone – with the same code base and features as the desktop with some minor differences specific to the phone (no Activex support for example). This brings HTML5 rendering engine to the phone. It includes hardware acceleration, although taking into account smaller GPU.
    • Multi-tasking and Live Agents: real time interactions via Live Tiles, Push Notifications, Deep Linking and Background Agents.
    • Live tile enhancements such as multiple Live tiles per app, deep linking, …
    • Silverlight 4
    • Sockets
    • Ringtone API
    • Raw camera feed access to applications
    • SQL CE: in-memory local SQL database for ease of data applications
    • Additions to developer tooling: new Location tooling, Accelerometer tooling, profiler and support for Silverlight and XNA in the same project
    • Marketplace: going from 16 to 35 countries with Marketplace for consumers, 30 to 35 countries for devevlopers selling apps
    • New languages support, including Dutch (yay!)

    Our recommendations:

    1. Watch the Day 2 keynote with demos by Joe Belfiore and Scott Guthrie on the new features and developer tooling
    2. Browse through and watch the recorded Windows Phone sessions from MIX11

    Customer Feedback for Windows Phone Developer through UserVoice
    The WPDev UserVoice forum is now available to gather user feedback from developers around on the application platform (APIs, runtimes, and controls) using Silverlight and XNA.
    Make your voice heard too:


    My personal note on the keynote and new features: sitting at the keynote I heard lots of great exciting “wow… amazing…” around me. Attending the keynote in person was a fantastic experience. Developers are very excited about new possibilities the 1500+ new APIs coming with “Mango”. For myself, it’s hard to choose the absolute favorites. But if I must, I guess the new features coming to the Live tiles are a personal favorite. One of the things that I love about the use of WP7 is the start screen and what you can do with Live tiles. So having more control over them will only enhance how the start screen gets more personal and comes even more to live.
    I must admit Silverlight 4 support, Live Agents, SQL CE support and such are also very welcome.

    At the conference there was also a Windows Phone booth (of course Winking smile), they had a very nice apps wall with tiny icons of the thousands of apps: THANK YOU DEVELOPERS.

    Oh, and Angry Birds is officially coming to Windows Phone 7. Are you concerned? I know some folks will be happy.

    The new developer tools, codenamed “Mango” are coming next month in May. Get ready today!

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Register for the ISV Discovery Day Spring Edition on May 12 2011


    The spring season is back which means there are some great local events coming up where you can see our latest tools and technologies and have the opportunity to network with speakers and other ISVs.  My colleagues from the ISV team are happy to announce that on May 12th, the spring edition of the ISV Discovery Day is taking place in Brussels where they will bring you a mixture of architectural sessions and more in-depth sessions on technologies such as SQL Server, Windows Azure and Bing Maps. 

    We have invited a number of inspirational people to come and talk about topics such as

    • building compelling Business Intelligence capabilities by leveraging the power of SQL Server and Bing Maps
    • taking advantage of unlimited cloud scale and flexibility by re-architecting applications
    • optimizing applications for Touch

    >> Read more and register by going to the ISV Discovery Day Spring Edition

    Register now

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Learn more about the Microsoft Platform Ready program


    If you’re not yet familiar with the Microsoft Platform Ready (MPR) program; MPR provides free technical, marketing, and certification support for companies and individuals that are developing software applications on the Windows Platform. Whether you’re building simple add-ons, rich client applications, complex client and server solutions or planning for the future with cloud services, Microsoft Platform Ready is set out to help you bring your application to the market faster.

    My colleague Nick Trogh, ISV Developer Evangelist in our team has all the details and advantages of why you should consider joining this program.

    >> Read the full story on Nick’s blog.

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Free Classroom Training: Touch Development For The Slate PC on May 9th


    Windows Slate PCIn this 1-day, free of charge (for MSFT partners), classroom training you will learn hands-on (pun not intended Smile) how you can build touch-optimized applications for touch-enabled devices such as the Slate PC. We will provide you insight in the different capabilities of the platform and show you how and when to use each one of them.

    As building a great touch experience requires more than coding skills, we will also focus on user experience (UX) design principles and typical touch screen design problems.  Learn first-hand from the pioneers in usability, Human Interface Group, how you can sharpen your designer skills and take your application to the next level.


    TouchTouch refers to the way Windows lets you interact directly with a computer using a finger. Compared to using a mouse, keyboard, or pen, touch is often much more natural, engaging, and convenient.

    While touch is traditionally associated with Tablet PCs, it is becoming common on ordinary computers. The Windows Tablet and Touch Technology is a standard component of Windows Vista and Windows 7, so any compatible computer has the ability to take advantage of touch if it has the appropriate hardware. As a result, computer manufacturers are now including touchscreens in ordinary laptops and even in desktop monitors.  As touch spreads from Tablet PCs to other types of computers, software program developers and designers will find it increasingly important to support touch as well.

    Remember, all Windows programs should have a great touch experience!

    May 9th, from 9:00 – 17:00

    Microsoft Innovation Center (
    1, Boulevard Initialis
    7000 Mons

    >> See the training invite here

    >> Register here for the training

    Microsoft Partner Network Training

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    HTML5 Web Camp Belgium recordings and slides available



    Last week on April 6 we organized the first HTML5 Web Camp in Belgium. With registrations running out in less than 24 hours quite some of you will be happy everything is recorded and now available for online viewing or download. We were delighted to have your peers from agencies and partners presenting on real world cases. We would like to extend a big thank you to all our speakers from Netlog, These Days, Ferranti and LBi Belgium.
    The session recordings are a great opportunity to learn about IE9, HTML5, Canvas, Geolocation API, JavaScript, jQuery, CSS3 and WebSockets.

    Side note: In the meantime, we have just finished MIX11 event where Internet Explorer 10 Platform Preview was announced. This is the first developer preview of IE10 where we expect feedback from the community on new standards implementations. In a few words, IE10 includes support for CSS Grid alignment, CSS Flexbox, CSS gradients and CSS multi-columns.
    Download and try the standalone IE10 Platform preview 1 and check out the developer guide.

    Sessions and resources from the HTML5 Web Camp:

    Welcome and introduction
    In this welcome introduction I talked about Internet Explorer 9 launch, Belgian partners and how to enable site pinning with the jQuery.ie9ify plugin. We also recommend you check out {dev:unplugged} competition running until May 8th:
    Take a look at the contest submissions so far:
    Related resources:

    Location-aware shouting
    Speaker: Frank Desmettre, Netlog

    HTML5 offers several solutions for augmenting the experience of users on the web. One of these solutions is providing an accurate location of a user. Most of today's smartphones already support the technique of requesting your location through GPS but now an HTLM5 compatible browser can also pinpoint your location based on the IP of your device and nearby wireless access points.

    At Netlog we've been using the Geolocation API to add location information to user messages (shouts) both on the web version and the mobile site. This location is used to place them on a map that can be easily navigated using HTML5. This way we enable users to find out what's going on around them or on a location of their choice.

    Related resources:

    How Object-Oriented JavaScript can help your HTML5 site
    Speakers: Pieter Helsen and Bram Verdyck, These Days

    We all know that we now have a new Canvas element and some other very cool HTML5 tags, but how do you get to implementing these correctly? The site for example, is a mere 200 lines of HTML. How is this possible? Say Hello to OO JavaScript.
    By using the Frameratefest site These Days will explain how this concept has helped develop the site. We'll dive into code!

    Related resources:

    WebSockts on Fire
    Speaker: Jef Claes, Ferranti

    While the WebSockets API specification is not stable yet, various browser vendors have already implemented a prototype in their latest browser versions. Microsoft released their WebSockets prototype in December 2010. While there is no native implementation of WebSockets in IE9 just yet, for now they are providing a solution which works cross-browser, relying on a Silverlight client. Server-side a Windows Communication Foundation server is made available, which implements the latest version of the WebSockets protocol.

    In this session, Jef covers the WebSockets fundamentals, demonstrate a proof of concept that could be used in various fire department web applications and deep-dive into the code of this proof of concept.

    Related resources:

    Creating cross-browser designs with CSS3 and jQuery in a SCRUM methodology

    Speaker: Tim Vermaelen, LBi

    As today's web applications are growing in complexity, making them cross-browser is still key to success. Since history of web design we've seen all kinds of techniques that tackle browser issues. Still, they are very time consuming and expensive. This presentation will give you a quick look on what's possible these days with CSS3 and jQuery and how you can save time creating cross-browser web applications. Throw away half of your HTML code, half of your background images and start using more flexible techniques. This session is going to be based on a case of a big Belgian company, to be shown during the session.

    A few pics of the event to finish off.

    The much coveted IE9 USB-powered fish tank.


  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Register for webcast with Scott Hanselman LIVE from TechDays 2011 in Belgium on 26 April


    Join us in this LIVE webcast from TechDays Belgium in Antwerp on 26 April 2011. If you are not one of the lucky ones attending TechDays this year then attending the webcast is the next best thing. Scott Hanselman will run through the opening keynote and then open up the floor for Q&A. All of this accessible through the webcast.

    Timing: 26 April 2011; 14:00 – 15:00

    Important: please send us your questions by 20 April 2011 so we can bundle as many questions as possible. To submit your questions to Scott Hanselman, send an e-mail to with the subject "Scott Hanselman TechDays Live Q&A".

    About Scott Hanselman:

    Scott Hanselman

    Scott works out of his home office for Microsoft as a Principal Program Manager, aiming to spread good information about developing software, usually on the Microsoft stack. Before this he was the Chief Architect at Corillian Corporation, now a part of Checkfree, for 6+ years. He was also involved in a few Microsoft Developer things for many years like the MVP and RD programs and he'll speak about computers (and other passions) whenever someone will listen. Before Corillian and Microsoft, Scott worked as a Principal Consultant at a local Microsoft Solution Provider called STEP Technology, speaking, writing, consulting, and very much not getting rich during Web 1.0.

    * If you attend this webcast you will get a free 'I have IT in my DNA' T-shirt! *

    IT in my DNA T-shirt

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Windows Azure News from MIX11


    We announced several updates to the Windows Azure platform today at MIX11 in Las Vegas. These new capabilities will help developers deploy applications faster, accelerate their application performance and enable access to applications through popular identity providers including Microsoft, Facebook and Google.

    New Services and Functionality

    A myriad of new Windows Azure services and functionality were unveiled today. These include:

    • An update to the Windows Azure SDK that includes a Web Deployment Tool to simplify the migration, management and deployment of IIS Web servers, Web applications and Web sites. This new tool integrates with Visual Studio 2010 and the Web Platform Installer. This update will ship later today.
    • Updates to the Windows Azure AppFabric Access Control service, which provides a single-sign-on experience to Windows Azure applications by integrating with enterprise directories and Web identities.
    • Release of the Windows Azure AppFabric Caching service in the next 30 days, which will accelerate the performance of Windows Azure and SQL Azure applications.
    • A community technology preview (CTP) of Windows Azure Traffic Manager, a new service that allows Windows Azure customers to more easily balance application performance across multiple geographies.
    • A preview of the Windows Azure Content Delivery Network (CDN) for Internet Information Services (IIS) Smooth Streaming capabilities, which allows developers to upload IIS Smooth Streaming-encoded video to a Windows Azure Storage account and deliver that video to Silverlight, iOS and Android Honeycomb clients.

    Windows Azure Platform Offer Changes

    We also announced several offer changes today, including:

    • The extension of the expiration date and increases to the amount of free storage, storage transactions and data transfers in the Windows Azure Introductory Special offer. This promotional offer now includes 750 hours of extra-small instances and 25 hours of small instances of the Windows Azure service, 20GB of storage, 50K of storage transactions, and 40GB of data transfers provided each month at no charge until September 30, 2011. More information can be found here.
      • An existing customer who signed up for the original Windows Azure Introductory Special offer will get a free upgrade as of today. An existing customer who signed up for a different offer (other than the Windows Azure Introductory Special) would need to sign up for the updated Windows Azure Introductory Special Offer separately.
    • MSDN Ultimate and Premium subscribers will benefit from increased compute, storage and bandwidth benefits for Windows Azure. More information can be found here.
    • The Cloud Essentials Pack for Microsoft partners now includes 750 hours of extra-small instances and 25 hours of small instances of the Windows Azure service, 20GB of storage and 50GB of data transfers provided each month at no charge. In addition, the Cloud Essentials Pack also contains other Microsoft cloud services including SQL Azure, Windows Azure AppFabric, Microsoft Office 365, Windows Intune and Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online. More information can be found here.

    You can start building your application on it in 3 simple and easy to do steps:

    1. Download the Tools:

    Get Visual Studio Express and the Windows Azure Tools for Visual Studio to start building and debugging applications for the Windows Azure Platform If you have already Visual Studio installed you can download the tools directly from Also download the Windows Azure Toolkit for Windows Phone 7.

    2. Setup an Account:

    Set up an account and obtain a free subscription for accessing the online portals for Windows Azure, SQL Azure and Windows Azure AppFabric. You can learn more about the accounts or you can sign up directly and get the trial

    3. Create your First application and Deploy it on the Windows Azure Platform:

    First learn how to create a simple ASP.NET application in Visual Studio for Windows Azure on your local machine Once successfully created, learn how to deploy this application on the Windows Azure Platform

    When all steps are executed successfully you should have running your first mobile application on the Windows Azure Platform!

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Official TechDays 2011 Belux Windows Phone app now available


    The official TechDays 2011 WP7 App developed by RealDolmen is now available on the Marketplace.
    The app will give you the ability to browse to the current and upcoming sessions. Once the session is started you can give live feedback and follow upon what others think about the sessions.

    If you want to get insights into how this Windows Phone application was built, including the back-end and alternative web front-end: don’t miss the session by Kevin Dockx and Maarten Balliauw on Tuesday 26th of April:

    Silverlight, Windows Phone 7, Windows Azure, jQuery, OData and RIA Services. Shaken, not stirred.
    Have you ever been jealous of James Bond and his gadgets? Don’t be: as a .NET developer you have plenty of cool gadgets at hand. If you are interested in how our .NET gadgets can be mixed together, let Kevin and Maarten guide you along the path of building a live event feedback application that leverages Silverlight, Windows Phone 7, Windows Azure, jQuery, OData and RIA Services.

    Take a look at some of the app’s functionalities in these screenshots: 

    You can favorite a session and see what your upcoming favorite sessions are.

    Let us know what you think about the sessions, the food, the location, the event. Your feedback counts!

    Download the App

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