March 10, 2011 News Thursday: Visual Studio Updates, BI Customer Spotlight, and more Server and Tools News…

S. Somasegar Announces Updates to Visual Studio Family at TechEd MEA on March 8

On March 8, S. Somasegar keynoted at TechEd MEA in Dubai, where he announced a variety of updates to the Visual Studio product family. News included updates to Visual Studio Service Pack 1 (SP1), Team Foundation Server (TFS) Project Server Integration Feature Pack and Visual Studio 2010 Load Test Virtual User Pack. During his keynote, Somasegar also announced that Visual Studio LightSwitch beta 2 is coming soon, but no specific details on timing were provided.

For more information please visit Somasegar's WebLog.

Kimberly-Clarke Corp. Sees $10 Million in Additional Revenue Using Microsoft BI

Today Kimberly-Clark Corp., a leading producer of consumer personal-care products, has adopted a Microsoft business intelligence (BI) solution to improve manufacturing efficiency and increase business agility. In the first three months since the deployment, Kimberly-Clark has increased production efficiency in its supply chain and has realized $10 million in additional revenue by avoiding out-of stock scenarios, revenue that would have otherwise been lost. Kimberly-Clark is now looking to reproduce the benefits they are seeing from the Microsoft BI platform to other areas of the company.

For more information, please see the official press release. Read the full case study on the Microsoft Case Studies Page.

Updated Windows Azure SDK and Windows Azure Management Portal Now Available

On Wednesday, Microsoft released new versions of the Windows Azure Software Development Kit (SDK) and Windows Azure Management portal for developers. The Windows Azure SDK includes new features for both Windows Azure Connect and the Windows Azure Content Delivery Network (CDN), as well as enhancements to improve the stability and robustness of Remote Desktop to Windows Azure Roles and other bug fixes. In addition, the new version of the Windows Azure Management Portal has been enhanced to make the UI more responsive. To learn more about yesterday’s announcement, please visit the Windows Azure blog. To download the new Windows Azure SDK, please click here. To start using the new Windows Azure Management Portal, click here.

For more information, please see the Windows Azure Blog.

Learning Content Provider Uses Cloud Platform to Enhance Content Delivery


Point8020 Limited created ShowMe for SharePoint 2010 to deliver embedded, context-sensitive video help and training for Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010. Point8020 created a new menu option and a context-sensitive tab for the SharePoint Server 2010 ribbon, and it built a rich user interface with Microsoft Silverlight browser technology for displaying videos. Using the Windows Azure platform, the company moved the program’s library of video files to the cloud, enabling much simpler deployment of content updates. Point8020 found that the tight interoperation of Microsoft development tools and technologies enabled rapid development and a fast time-to-market. By using a cloud-based solution, Point8020 has also opened the way for new business models.

For more other Windows Azure customer and partner stories, visit: