In an earlier post I commented about day 1 of an onsite Microsoft training class here at Illinois Wesleyan. My main complaints at that time had to do with the virtual environment and the obsession with Microsoft troubleshooting dogma. I’ve had some time to reflect on the class so in this post I’ll give a more complete evaluation.
Today was the start of a three-day onsite Microsoft Vista training class at work. I’ve been to lots of these courses and I guess I’ve adapted to them. Others didn’t take to it so easily. Upon reflection I can see why. The first module is all about “troubleshooting methodology”. While I understand that someone wishing to become a MS certified support person would need to know Microsoft’s doctrine on troubleshooting techniques, I’m not so sure it needs to be an instructor-led piece, and I’m dead sure it shouldn’t lead off the first day.
Furthermore, the whole class is done with virtualization. This is a cool, cheap way to go that doesn’t waste a lot of time (except in setting up). However it is kind of hard to conceptualize a series of remote connections to virtual machines on the same single physical PC.
I have learned a few neat support tricks that I’m not sure I would have found otherwise. Apparently there is now a Windows Recovery Environment that trumps the old command line Recovery Console. It includes a memory test – better 12 years late than never! I also never realized that the msconfig application in Vista has an extra tab. You can use it to launch a number of different tools, including a reg file that disables/enables User Account Control.
I certainly hope that the rest of the class will find similar gems even among the questionable course design by MS. I’d hate to see this first group training effort be our last!