Introducing Windows Server 2012 – Free

Looks like Amazon has this book from MS Press for free. This is the updated RTM version of the book. The only catch is that it’s just for the Kindle. Which is fine, you can read Kindle books on your Windows Phone, or pretty much any iDevice, Android, and Blackberry. Or if you don’t have one of those (which I doubt if you’re reading this) there is always Kindle for PC. Or a Metro version if you have an RT.

Basically, you have no excuse not to grab a free copy of this book. So get it now while it’s still free.

How To Create Windows 8 Tiles To Reboot or Logoff

One of the things that I did not like in Windows Vista and Windows 7 was that in order to logoff, shutdown, or reboot, you had to make quite a few clicks. It seems to me that the process was just way too complicated, and it was blogged about by many people. I thought that certainly after all the complaints Microsoft heard that it would be better in Windows 8 and Server 2012. Nope.

Now, in Windows 8, you have to get the charms bar up by either putting your mouse in the lower-right hand corner, or by using the Win+C shortcut, then click on Settings, then click on Power, then pick the option you want from the pop-up menu. It’s different, but still way too many steps to have to go through. Ok, if you have PowerShell open, you could just type Restart-Computer, but not everyone always has PowerShell open, especially if you are using a Surface RT. A good solution would be a little more universally available.

Like the guy yelling out the window in “Network”, I decided I didn’t want to put up with that for several years. So I decided to find an alternate method.

I found some control panel add-ins, taskbar shortcuts, and some other things that would get me where I wanted, but I was looking for something a little… well, sexier, from a geek perspective. Like doing it via PowerShell, that would be sweet. Then I found this gem over on the Microsoft Script Center. If you’re an IT person dealing with Microsoft technologies, I would highly recommend keeping that site in your favorites, as well as the Hey Scripting Guy! blog. Because you are using PowerShell already, right? I thought so.

This PowerShell solution comes with a module that you import, then you just run New-OSCWindowsTile and BAM! you have tiles for Shutdown, Restart, and Logoff. Once that’s done if you hit your Windows key on the keyboard, then type “res” you should see the Restart option. On my computer, I can now reboot with just five keystrokes instead of all that mouse clicking.

Introducing Windows 8–Free Ebook

Microsoft has released the final version of “Introducing Windows 8 – An Overview fro IT Professionals” and you can download it for free in several formats:

PDF
Introducing Windows 8- An Overview for IT Professionals – PDF ebook

Mobi
Introducing Windows 8-An Overview for IT Professionals – Mobi format for Kindle

ePub
Introducing Windows 8-An Overview for IT Professionals – ePub format

Here’s what’s covered in the book:

  • Hardware Innovations
    Touch; Long battery life; Thiner, lighter, faster; Sensors and security; New Form Factors
  • Experiencing Windows 8
    Walk-through the new UI and key improvements to Task Manager and File Explorer.
  • Customizing and Configuring Windows 8
    Profile customization, Tile configuration, PC Settings, Redesigned NTFS
  • Networking Enhancements
    BranchCache, DirectAccess, Mobile broadband, IPv6
  • Deploying Windows 8
    Windows 8 SKUs, Application Compatibility, User State Migration, Deployment and Imaging, Windows PE, Volume Activation Management Tool, Windows-to-Go
  • Delivering Windows Apps
    Windows app lifecycle, Distributing via Windows Store, Distributing with an Enterprise
  • Windows 8 Recovery
    File History, Refresh and Reset, Windows Recovery Environment, DaRT, Advanced Options
  • Windows 8 Management
    PowerShell 3.0, Group Policy Improvements, System Center 2012 Configuration Manager, Windows Intune
  • Windows 8 Security
    Secure boot, SmartScreen, Vulnerability mitigation and sandboxing, BitLocker, Virtual smart cards, Dynamic Access Control
  • Internet Explorer 10
    New features, Group Policies for IE 10
  • Windows 8 Virtualization
    Client Hyper-V, Virtual Desktop Infrastructure, Application virtualization, User state virtualization

I read part of the book in pre-release, and it’s a great resource for all things related to Windows 8. Get your copy now, it’s free!