Today I got an e-mail from Microsoft announcing the all-new TechNet Subscriber Portal Experience – initially I thought it was going to be a reminder to renew my subscription. The new features include:
- Browse Product A–Z: all products listed alphabetically
- Browse Product categories: the familiar category view
- Top Products: quick access to the most common products
- New Downloads: RSS feed of the latest releases
- New Products: products that have new downloads available
- Search: fastest way to find a download when you know what you’re looking for
- Faster search results via autocomplete & acronym recognition
- Easier access and management of account information
- Simpler purchase and upgrade experience
That first one made me smile. If products weren’t listed alphabetically in the past, how were they listed? Randomly?
Joking apart, it’s nice to see Microsoft make continued investment into their TechNet subscription system, even if it does mean knowing that the letter A comes before the letter B in the alphabet!
Today, one of my editors at TechTarget asked what was happening on the VMTN Subscription Movement. Last year there was a group conference call of VMware vExperts where folks dialed into express their views, and I had a one-on-one chat with a VMware representative who is gathering information about the concept to write a report & present it to senior management. Interestingly, its movement has triggered a much broader reassessment of how VMware manages access to its software generally – something that surprised and delighted me. I’ve yet to hear back on this – but I did offer to look over the report and add my own thoughts and views.
At the time I did suggest that VMware look at other vendor programmes like TechNet to avoid any “wheel reinventing”. I was pleased to hear that VMware with typical gusto would prefer to do something better than Microsoft. So at the moment there’s no firm news or announcement. All I know is that VMware is listening (which is the main thing) and seriously considering their options.