• 1. London, UK
  • 2. New York, NY
  • 3. Sydney, Australia
  • 4. Melbourne, Australia
  • 5. Moscow, Russia
  • 6. Singapore
  • 7. Paris, France
  • 8. Chicago, IL
  • 9. Hong Kong
  • 10. Houston, TX
Bharat Suneja

Thursday, January 21, 2010


More Browsers, More Browser Woes

Posted by Bharat Suneja at 6:05 AM
In an increasingly web-centric world where cloud services are supposed to replace all our desktop apps, the web browser has become an important tool. Although new browsers have been introduced and old ones mature, the browser experience continues to degrade, alarmingly so!

Browsers, including the "smaller", "faster", "nimbler" ones, increasingly consume large amounts of system resources. I'm alarmed by the memory consumption record of FireFox (and although I haven't done any strictly comparative tests, it seems IE 8 is more well-behaved in this respect). More importantly, browser crashes are up to annoying levels, and again - I see these happening with FireFox more often than IE or Chrome.

InfoWorld's J. Peter Buzzese beat me to this post, and he echoes my thoughts very closely on the subject. So, rather than repeat what he's already written, let me simply point to his latest— Enough! What to do about browser piggishness.


Friday, December 18, 2009


Connected, as never before

Posted by Bharat Suneja at 11:25 PM
I spent last week thinking about couple of blog posts I wanted to finish, but it seems this year the holiday spirit took over a little sooner than it normally does (for me). It's been a busy year with Exchange 2010, and now that it's released and getting rave reviews, it's time to take a break.

Seth Godin has put together What Matters Now - a collection of thoughts strung together in an ebook that's available as a free download on his blog. I found parts of the book echoed my thoughts closely as 2009 makes an exit. Interesting passage from Howard Mann:

There are tens of thousands of businesses making many millions a year in profits and still haven't ever heard of twitter, blogs, or facebook. Are they all wrong? Have they missed out or is the joke on us? They do business through personal relationships, by delivering great customer service and it's working for them. They're more successful than most of those businesses who spend hours pontificating about how others lose out by missing social media and the latest wave. And yet they're doing business. Great business. Not writing about it. Doing it.

I'm continually amazed by the number of people on Twitter and blogs , and the growth of people (and brands) on facebook. But I'm also amazed by how so many of us are spending our time. The echo chamber we're building is getting larger and louder.

More megaphones don't equal a better dialogue. We've become slaves to our mobile devices and the glow of our screens. It used to be much more simple and, somewhere, simple turned into slow.

We walk the streets with our heads down staring into 3-inch screens while the world whisks by doing the same. And yet we're convinced we are more connected to each other than ever before. Multi-tasking has become a badge of honor. I want to know why.

I don't have all the answers to these questions but I find myself thinking about them more and more. In between tweets, blog posts and facebook updates.

Howard Mann is a speaker, entrepreneur, and the author of Your Business Brickyard.
What Matters Now is completely worth reading, and the above passage makes one think about the changes 2009 brought and accelerated. The number of Facebook users is higher than the U.S. population. YouTube has served more than a billion videos. And an ever-increasing mass of mankind is forever tied to 3-inch screens. Blogging, tweeting, and Facebooking.

For the first time in a long while my holiday reading list doesn't include anything about Exchange Server or security or technology in general.


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Kingston SSDNow V Series 40 Gb driveI've been waiting for the Kingston SSDNow V Series 40 Gb solid state drive (SNV125-S2/40GB).

NewEgg.com's 'ShellShocker deal' of the day— $84.99 (after a 20 dollar rebate), and free shipping. Unfortunately, they seem to be perpetually sold out! Shortly after the drive went on sale on Nov. 9th, NewEgg.com indicated it was sold out. The site informed me the drive would be in stock on Nov. 11th. Not to be deterred, I selected the option to be notified by e-mail when it's in stock again, hoping to buy it the instant I get a notification. The notification never arrived, and this morning NewEgg.com showed the drive was sold out again! A quick call to NewEgg revealed the drive's status went straight from showing an ETA to sold out. NewEgg.com doesn't accept orders for out-of-stock items. Which begs the question— was the item ever available? The rep wasn't able to confirm if they did in fact restock it or not, and NewEgg.com doesn't provide an ETA on this item any more.

Kingston announced the drive recently, and tech blogs have been buzzing up the NewEgg.com deal for days. The drive promises amazing performance gains (170 MB/sec sequential reads! Although the 40 MB/sec sequential writes seem to be a tad underwhelming in comparison, random writes should outpace hard drives.) and is intended to be used as a boot drive to dramatically reduce system boot times. Early reviews have been promising enough, and the price makes it hard to resist.

If you've been able to get hold of the Kingston SSDNow 40 Gb or a similar drive and taken it for a spin, do share your SSD experience.


Wednesday, July 16, 2008


Powered by Hyper-V: Exchangepedia virtualized!

Posted by Bharat Suneja at 11:33 AM
Finally, it was time to bid adieu to the endearing Dell box that served Exchangepedia for >4 years with all of its might (psssst... that means a 400 Mhz. PIII processor with 256 Mb. RAM.. :). Time to leave the world of phsyical servers, and move on to the virtualization world!

Today the site was moved to a Hyper-V VM, running Windows Server 2008 and IIS 7. Yes, just like microsoft.com, it's now "powered by Hyper-V".

If you have trouble accessing it, please let me know. For sporadic access issues, or any missing pages (some files may not have copied over from the old server... ), please leave a comment, or email me at info at exchangepedia dot com.


Monday, June 30, 2008


Exchangepedia turns 4!

Posted by Bharat Suneja at 11:00 AM
Yes, Exchangepedia Blog is 4 years old today! Exchangepedia saw its first posts in June 2004. Hundreds of posts, 1 major Exchange release and 2 service packs (Exchange Server 2003 SP2 and Exchange Server 2007 SP1) later, it's great to look back at some of the stuff I've enjoyed writing, and some posts that got great feedback.

Exchangepedia turns 4

Feedback about the content and other aspects of Exchangepedia is always welcome and valued. Sorry, I'm unable to reply to each comment and cannot respond to each question, I do read all of them.

With that in mind, if you have any feedback on the posts, screenshots, "screencasts", scripts, design, content, topics, etc., please leave a comment.

- Has it been useful for you?
- Is it interesting to read?
- Do the posts here help you resolve any deployment/operations issues or clarify a concept?
- Are there additional topics you'd like to see covered here?
- Would you like to see any changes to anything on the blog - the content, the design, anything? (Except for adding a Search box, which is on the top of my list... )?

In the 5th year of its existence, I do intend to finally move Exchangepedia off the Blogger platform, and no— it being a Google product really has nothing to do with it. I love Wordpress, and would like to play with Joomla! or Community Server as well— time permitting. Migrating all the content, comments, and keeping existing URLs is a bigger and more complicated project than I thought.

Finally, the traffic has been rising steadily, and the existing server that's been hosting this blog since day 1 seems to be limiting. I would really love to move off the 400-Mhz. Pentium 3 box that's been serving this site (and quite a few other web sites, including some Wordpress ones)— maybe to a Windows Server 2008 web server running inside a Hyper-V virtual machine. If my tests with Wordpress on Windows 2008 go well, I will hopefully be able to do that soon.

Meanwhile, if you know of a "Migrate This" button I can click on to migrate all posts, comments and URLs from Blogger to Wordpress, please email me!

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Friday, June 06, 2008


Exchangepedia: A search hack

Posted by Bharat Suneja at 2:12 PM
Playing with custom error pages early this a.m., and here's a way to search Exchangepedia. Go to the search page - http://exchangepedia.com/search.aspx, ignore the "this page couldn't be found" error, and use the search.

Note: Sorry, it doesn't seem to work as a link. You will need to type the URL manually: exchangepedia.com/search.aspx

Yes, not the best way to search - once I get enough time a Search box will end up in the top banner on all pages. Meanwhile, please use this workaround.

Please leave feedback and let me know if the workaround works!


Wednesday, April 23, 2008


Moving on to the Exchange team

Posted by Bharat Suneja at 8:51 PM
"Vista Gets Compromised" couldn't be the best blog post to kick off a Microsoft career with— and yet, that happened to be my last post before I joined Microsoft. (To be fair, it wasn't Vista's fault.. read the comments in that post..)

Sorry for the radio silence over the past weeks— it is rather unusual.

I landed at the Exchange product group about three weeks ago. I am excited to be part of an excellent product team, and cannot seem to contain my excitement about what's going on with the next version of Exchange. What's more, I'll still be working from the Bay Area.

The night before NEO, Scott Hanselman did a great job of explaining his reasons for joining Microsoft and how he feels about it. Russ and I nodded in agreement.

What about Exchangepedia?
What started as "Bharat Suneja's Blog" close to 4 years ago morphed into Exchangepedia. I will continue to blog here, and will have even more information to share - at least about the versions of Exchange we continue to use and deploy today (2007/2003), and other issues not directly related to Exchange.

Over the years, the Exchange team folks have been great about sharing information that has found its way to this blog and newsgroup responses. If anything, I see myself being even more involved with the Exchange community in this new role.

Not an MVP any more!
One of the things that happens when MVPs join Microsoft - they can't remain MVPs any more. Being an Exchange MVP has meant a lot to me over the past years, and given the mystery about my start dates, I was lucky to get awarded for 2008-2009 as well. Yes, the pleasure of still being an MVP as a Microsoftie was very short-lived indeed, but a pleasure nonetheless.

What about Zenprise?
Zenprise is an amazing and exciting product and I'm proud to have been a part of it. We went from no product to Zenprise 3.3 in a little over 2.5 years that I was there. Along the way, we built some great troubleshooting and monitoring functionality for Exchange and BlackBerry, and won a lot of awards for it (including Best of TechEd for 2 consecutive years). Zenprise has an excellent team, and the products keep getting better with every rapid-fire release. It was one of InfoWorld's Top 15 Startups to Watch in 2007, and recently got named a Gartner Cool Vendor. Needless to say, it is and will continue to be an exciting company to watch.


Thursday, October 11, 2007

On the way back from vacation last week, I decided to finish reading Bob Woodward's excellent book 'State of Denial: Bush At War, Part III'. Interesting snippet, and not completely off-topic. Time of the incident: July 2003.
As the public face of the American declaration before the United Nations that Saddam had WMD, Powell had almost as much stake as Bush. (David) Kay gave Powell basically the same briefing that he had given to Bush - inconclusive but basically a neutral to negative report.

"This is my personal e-mail address," Powell said, handing Kay a card as he turned to leave. "Write me if you have any concerns or any questions."

Kay looked at the card when he got back to Langley and almost died laughing. Powell had given him a regular, commercial, America Online e-mail address, a communication method about as secure and confidential as spray-painting graffiti on a highway overpass.

"Here I am sitting in the CIA headquarters," Kay though. "I'm going to send something to an AOL account?"


Wednesday, August 08, 2007


Blogroll: Brian Tirch's blog

Posted by Bharat Suneja at 10:27 AM
My friend Brian Tirch has started blogging. He's an active participant in the Exchange Server 2007 (RTM & SP1) TAP, and has been running a significant Exchange Server 2007 deployment since before it RTMed. His blog - Exchange_Genie - is at http://exchange-genie.blogspot.com/.

Adding to Blogroll.


Tuesday, May 22, 2007

I have to post about Engadget's (the blog/site for gadget-junkies) post today showing environmentalist ex-Vice President Al Gore's den - look at the post on Engadget.com titled "Al Gore: ex-VP, environmentalist, gadget freak".

Comparatively, I'm not doing too bad - I need to add 2 more of those super-sexy Apple Cinema displays, but don't care as much for the flat panel tv on the wall. The little toob-watching I do happens to be on the Apple monitor hooked to a Windows Media Center PC. :) (...still waiting for Sony to release Windows Vista drivers for the MPEG card, et al for my Media Center).

And I'm inching closer to getting a Mac Book Pro (think they'll refresh the Mac Book Pros with the Santa Rosa chipset soon?) - after the next refresh, and once I'm sufficiently convinced it will run Windows Vista without issues.

Not much of an iPod fan - I am waiting for the uber mobile device that's a cross between the music-playing capabilities of an iPod or a Zune, the mobile phone capabilities of an iPhone or a Windows Mobile device, has a decent speaker-phone and a GPS nav system. The current crop of Windows Mobile devices are not "it", and neither is the iPhone. The iPhone can't talk to Exchange, doesn't do ActiveSync... Apple blew away one chance of winning business customers over to the pricey iPhone by not including ActiveSync support... perhaps RIM will jump at the chance to make the iPhone a BlackBerry... as it's doing for Windows Mobile devices (read previous post "RIM does a BlackBerry on Windows Mobile").


Wednesday, May 09, 2007

A job board has been added to the site to list Exchange Server/AD-related jobs - jobs.exchangepedia.com.


Friday, April 13, 2007


The hilarious lingo of Exchange folks

Posted by Bharat Suneja at 6:27 PM
The lingo used by most Exchange folks is hilarious - and I include myself in this. Just got an email from someone in the product team that goes "Sorry, I was OOF.... " :)

OOF stands for Out Of Office, derived from Microsoft Outlook/Exchange's functionality of being able to set up Out Of Office messages. I frequently use that term myself, but sitting here on a Friday evening I can't help but think how this comes across to folks not familiar with this terminology.



I've been tagged!

Posted by Bharat Suneja at 8:51 AM
Last month, Clustering MVP Rod Fournier tagged me with a "5 things you don't know about me" post - and I had no clue till this morning what this is all about till I got shamed by Rod!

5 things you don't know about me:

1) My first introduction to this wonderful country (and the beautiful Washington state) was at age 16, as an exchange student in Othello, WA. Living with American families in a small town, attending high school as a senior - what a great experience!

2) At some point before or after I turned 20, I got addicted to "The Sims" and spent a good part of the day playing it. It was hard to get out of - a brilliant game, and one reason I don't own a Playstation or Xbox console till this day - the fear of addiction.

3) Like Evan Dodds, I'm a huge Windows Media Center fan - I think it's one of the best innovations to come out of Microsoft. The little TV that I watch these days is on a MediaCenter PC, hooked to my Apple monitor. I'd really love to see a MCE PC the size/form of Apple's Mac Mini, with a TV Tuner and CableCard built-in (to get rid of the external cable/satellite box).

4) I love the current genre of Bollywood (a term for India's Hindi film industry, centered in/around Bombay/"Mumbai") films - the past few years have seen Indian films become increasingly slick productions, comparable to the best of the world. Watching Indian movies in one of Bay Area theaters that screen them, I'm often surprised by the number of Americans and non-Indians in the crowd.

5) I love good design and writing about cool tech stuff! In a former life, I wrote advertising copy (and did plenty of graphic design projects) for ad agencies. As a Contributing Editor for PC Quest - India's #1 personal computing magazine at that time, and PC World (Indian edition), I also wrote articles, product reviews, and a regular column.

Now comes the difficult part - of tagging 3 people I know. Rod has already tagged Jim McBee and Evan Dodds, and Evan tagged Vivek Sharma (see where this is going?) - let's hear from Scott Schnoll, Dave Goldman, and... Vivek Sharma (since he hasn't yet responded to Evan tagging him... fair enough? :).


Sunday, April 01, 2007


News.com: U.S. government outlaws Windows Vista!

Posted by Bharat Suneja at 6:42 AM
In a tongue-in-cheek news headline (yes, there's just the headline and a brief excerpt - the actual news report is missing), CNet's News.com posts "President Bush signs measure decreeing that Microsoft's operating system is so complex it poses a national security threat".

According to the report - "There's all these new colors and the startup sound is completely different," says one worried U.S. senator. What's funny is reading this brief didn't sound like it would be something outside the realm of possibility! :)

In case you haven't guessed it, this was News.com's April Fool's Day special edition. With several other interesting headlines that don't seem to be outside the realm of possibility, but obiviously aren't true. For instance, Larry Ellision suing Forbes magazine for not being included in the top 10 of Forbes' billionaires list.

Read the News.com April Fool's Day special edition.

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Monday, March 12, 2007


Exchangepedia Blog: A note to visitors

Posted by Bharat Suneja at 1:09 AM
It wasn't very long ago when I got excited about getting a 1000 pageviews a day - then a milestone for this blog [reached in the week of Jan. 21, 2007 "Exchangepedia Blog crosses another landmark: over 1000 pageviews/day"].

Little did I know what was in store a few weeks down the road, thanks in no small part to DST 2007 posts!

The traffic in the past weeks and days has grown by an order of magnitude, and is getting to a point where I may have to think about replicating this blog to another server - (the blog's currently hosted by a "trusted but rusted" old Pentium III - as in number 3 - box running at a blazing 400 Mhz with all of 256 Mb. of RAM! No, it's not Linux & Apache, but Windows Server 2003 & IIS).

Thanks for all the comments: Thanks to all those who recently left comments, particularly on the post titled DST 2007: Understanding what needs to be done and how to do it - comments like "Well Written - So rest of us can comprehend", and "Very nicely written. Much better than anything else I have read yet", and best of all "...your blog rocks!" - whoever left the last comment, the beer's on me next time. :)

Many of you have posted questions on different posts & topics. The number of comments has increased to a point that I cannot respond to each and every comment. I will try to get to as many as I can, as soon as I can.

Having said that, please continue to leave feedback about the posts or content you like, and feel free to point out any technical issues or inaccuracies.

It is very satisfying to know that you find this blog useful, and the information helpful in your IT adventures, particularly those with Exchange server and messaging.

I'm at the MVP Summit in Seattle/Redmond this week - it'll likely be one of those weeks with very few or no posts. Hopefully, I'll get to catch up when I get back, and hopefully this week brings an end to DST 2007 issues. (Depending on how the rebasing efforts went, I would expect some user complaints about appointments being off... ).



Thursday, February 01, 2007


Exchangepedia is losing the www

Posted by Bharat Suneja at 3:33 PM
Exchangepedia Blog is losing the www from its URL - though it will still be accessible using http://www.exchangepedia.com/blog, all links are changing to http://exchangepedia.com/blog.

The atom feed will change from http://www.exchangepedia.com/blog/atom.xml to http://exchangepedia.com/blog/atom.xml at around midnight tomorrow (the former URL should still be accessible).


Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Some time over the last week, this blog crossed another landmark - it's now getting over 1000 pageviews a day! Thanks for visiting - I'm glad you find these posts useful and/or interesting! :)

(Yes, it is a big deal for me!)


Wednesday, January 17, 2007


Are blogs on their way out in 2007?

Posted by Bharat Suneja at 12:31 PM
Josh Maher posted a prediction on his blog not too long ago - Blogs will be replaced in 2007 [read "2007 Predictions: Blogs will be replaced"]. By Wikis & video. Hmm.... when a blogger - and a good one at that, imo - predicts that, it's time to pause and think!

I don't disagree with the overall tone about blogging in general in Maher's post.

It's true corporate marketing departments have hijacked blogs, or rather adopted the concept of blogging and use it extensively or exclusively to dish out their marketing spin - mostly about their company, their products, their industry, their CEOs and execs.... however, there are a lot of good blogs out there, and just like Maher - a lot of good bloggers, who will continue to contribute useful content throughout 2007, and beyond.

Yes, the blogosphere is getting crowded - and that's because blogging is made easy, effortless, and often free by services like Google's Blogger, amongst others. It's like rewinding our lives back to the early days of the web, when people discovered the power of publishing online. What followed was zillions of web sites, some very horrible design (I'm working on this blog's - and would've moved to the new design if it wasn't looking completely disastrous in IE! :) - and worse - useless content, or even an absolute lack thereof in many cases. Remember those jumping, dancing, animated GIFs in the early years, followed by an avalanche of Flash SWFs in the later years?

Eventually, bad web sites stagnate, and many die. They had no reason to exist - other than the site publisher's desire to "get on the web", and certainly none to fuel their ongoing existence. Yet many others do continue to exist.

I suspect the same may happen - if it hasn't already started to happen - to blogs.

(I'll indulge myself in a little back-patting here - I'm glad to say, judging by Exchangepedia's growth in number of visitors and pageviews every week, that it's likely filling a need and visitors get some useful information here.)

A number of very good blogs related to messaging, Exchange, AD, Windows platform, et al exist out there - including some linked in the Blogroll section of this blog.

Also important to note - blogging software/services provide an inexpensive or even free Content Management System (CMS) - one thing that probably didn't exist or at least wasn't as common and mature, during the previous growth phase of the web. This makes it a lot easier to post new content, as frequently as one likes. That's a big value-add. Increasingly, I'm seeing many enterprising web publishers use the same CMS used in blogs to publish "regular" web sites.

As with print publications like magazines, books, newspapers, et al - consumers of information (which is you, dear visitor :) - will choose to visit blogs that provide the content they're looking for or interested in, in a well-designed (not to be confused with "over-designed") or presentable format.

Having said that, yes, there is a place in this ecosystem for wikis and video. In many cases, these can be blended or merged with blogs. The Exchange team blog is a fine example - it has a good amount of video content now - you can see folks like Paul Bowden, Scott Schnoll, Becky Benfield, "The ExchangeShell Duo" Vivek Sharma & Mihai Jalobeanu, and even Terry Myerson (GM of Exchange Server group) talk about different pieces of Exchange, walk you through different procedures or demonstrate new features.

It doesn't seem very likely that blogs as a medium will go away any time soon. Just my opinion, and not a prediction by any means.


Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Ken Rosen, MCT Worldwide Program Manager at Microsoft, posted this recently on MCT newsgroups. Since it's on YouTube now it's for all to see - Microsoft's Mambo Number 5.

Part of the lyrics can be attributed to Ken. This is from the NT 4.0 days, which seem like a distant memory now. And yes, this does have something to do with Exchange.

For all you current and aspiring MCSEs out there :)


Tuesday, December 19, 2006


Unsubscribe message: we'll never forget you!

Posted by Bharat Suneja at 11:34 AM
Just happened to unsubscribe from a known software company's newsletter/sales pitch, and got this wonderful unsubscribe message... not too sure what to make of this. :)

If you love something, you must set it free; thus, you are completely unsubscribed from the ***** [company name] newsletter.
Though our time together was short, we'll never forget you.
I'm all for poetry and cute unsubscribe messages, but I do want you to forget me - or at least my email address! That's the whole point with unsubscribing!! :)


Friday, July 14, 2006


Exchangepedia is recovering from an outage

Posted by Bharat Suneja at 2:57 PM
Finally, the server that this blog is hosted on reached what appears to be end-of-life yesterday while I was out all day on an engineering off-site with no internet access (on purpose, to make it more productive!). I didn't notice it till I got home last night.

Serves me right for continuing to use an old, beat-up server - a dual processor (hold your breath!) Pentium III 400 Mhz, with all of 256 Mb. RAM and huge 18 Gig drive! The box also served me faithfully as my home Exchange server all these years, running Exchange Server 2003, and hosting a few other sites.

I've been wanting to buy a new box forever to replace this one, but having a hard time deciding on the hardware - a Dell Xeon or a Pentium D, or an AMD Opteron.... anticipating Dell's move to AMD processors.. and looking at the deals from Dell that get better with every passing week. Exchange Server 2007 is 64-bit, so I certainly need a 64-bit box.

I fell in love with Sun's new x64 (AMD Opteron) servers and workstations at TechEd. Frankly, they're built like PowerMacs.. .a delight to look at, and perform admirably. Nobody really makes low-end tower servers with AMD processors.

Bottomline, I have the old Dell sitting on my desk. The blog has been moved to another server - another 2000/2001 relic with PIII processors... but it continues to work for now.

What hasn't been recovered yet:
1. Images - so you'll see this site look a lot different... working on it
2. Flash demos and scripts - these need to be recovered from the old server's drives. So if you're trying to look at any demos or downloading scripts - these won't work for now.

Estimated time of recovery for the above items is some time on Monday or Tuesday.

Sorry for the incovenience folks... but it finally pushed me to order a new server.