So, I’m here in Seattle at the Microsoft MVP Summit to meet with the Forefront product group and other similar MVPs. This is a bit of an unusual post, as for a change this is not an article, or best practice discussion, just a simple brain dump of my current mindset.
These are some pretty smart people here who really seem keen to understand and learn what customers want from the Forefront product suite. A lot of information provided is under NDA, which makes it hard for me to share it with the ISA community at large, but there is some interesting stuff in the pipeline to put Microsoft in a very strong, if not unique, position within the IT security marketplace. It also reinforces my view that I need to expand my current ‘Edge’ skill set to include more of the Forefront products, especially the Microsoft “Stirling” offering.
This is my first time at the Summit, as I was only awarded my MVP in October, and this is the first chance I have had to meet with some of the other MVPs and community guys than I have come to know based upon their ‘online personalities’. This is both an exciting and humbling experience for me and the first real opportunity I have had to interact with Microsoft and other MVPs at this level…the experience has been very positive so far and I have tried to ask as many questions as possible to fuel future blog posts and articles.
I am still kind of jet lagged coming from the UK (an eight hour time zone difference to here) to Seattle. However, I am trying to think coherently and formulate questions to make the best of my time here. ‘Sleepless in Seattle’ is no longer just a film for me, but more of what happens when you keep waking up at 3am when your body clock is still on GMT time :)
So, enough rambling, the key question I ask is this; if you were to meet with the Forefront product group, what questions would you ask? I cannot guarantee to get answers (or provide them due to NDA restrictions) but I am curious to know how people perceive Microsoft in the Forefront area and also determine which messages as getting through to the community and which are not.
Now that Microsoft Forefront Threat Management Gateway (TMG) is public beta released, I am sure that people are starting to formulate ideas and opinions, yet it is still early enough within the product lifecycle to provide valuable feedback and ask “Why are you doing it like that…?” or “Why haven’t you added feature XYZ…?”
So, I am keen to hear you views, both positive and negative of course; either drop your comments here on my blog or drop me an email to the usual address.