Two days ago, May 9th, I attended the {Heroes Happen Here} launch event for VS'08, SQL Server '08 and Windows Server '08 in Milwaukee. There was alot of really great content shown off, and we all got to take away some free software, plus the event was free to attend.

I learned about new technologies like Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V and SoftGrid (which look very interesting, by the way), and I had the chance to talk to some really great people from the .NET developer community in Milwaukee. Milwaukee isn't a tech hub, but there are still some very smart techies around.

I also ran into my "old" (I've only known him for I think 2 years) friend Larry Clarkin, and we recorded a Virtual Earth episode of the podcast he and Dave Bost host; The Thirsty Developer. I was told the episode will be finished and released in the next couple weeks. I'll post about it once it's out.

The {Heroes Happen Here} website stated that attendees would receive free copies of Visual Studio '08, SQL Server '08 and Windows Server '08. Awesome, regular copies of each! Right? Not Trials? Wrong. It's awesome that they gave out copies of the software, but… The Windows Server '08 license they gave out was the Enterprise Edition, however it's only a 1 year trial. And, since SQL Server '08 hasn't RTM'd yet, they gave us the latest CTP. The SQL license makes sense (since it hasn't shipped yet), but the Server 2008 Trial was a bummer. I was hoping to get a regular full license so I could setup Hyper-V on my workstation and use virtualization like crazy. This could be done with the 1 year trial, but we all know what will happen in a year. Now the good thing is the Visual Studio 2008 license is for the Standard edition, no trial here. However, since most devs can do everything they do with the Express Editions of Visual Studio (even me for the most part), I don't see too much benefit here.

All in all, with the above complaints stated, It is freaking awesome that Microsoft gave away that much value of software for FREE! Plus, they threw in a copy of Windows Vista Ultimate w/ SP1, which was very cool indeed.

If any of you haven't attended one of the {Heroes Happen Here} launch events, there are still a few dates to come. Just go to the {Heroes Happen Here} website to see if there's a date left near you.

Now even though I've been using Visual Studio 2008 and .NET 3.5 since it RTM'd, I haven't really gotten into SQL Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 and Hyper-V yet. So the fun has only begun.