2011 Best of Connections

We handed out our Best of Connections 2011 awards at our annual Fall Connections conference in Las Vegas. These awards recognize standout products based on their innovation, strategic importance to the market, competitive advantage, and exceptional value to customers. The winners were chosen from more than 60 nominated products in six categories: Windows, SQL Server, SharePoint, Visual Studio, ASP.NET/Silverlight, and Exchange Server/Unified Communications. The field was narrowed to three finalists in each category, and then finalists were interviewed by our judging team on the show floor to determine the winners in each category. Winners were announced live at 2pm on Thursday, November 3.

“Narrowing down the list of nominees to 18 finalists in the six Connections categories was a challenge, considering that we were faced with so many top-tier products and services,” said Amy Eisenberg, Executive Editor for Windows IT Pro, “but in the end, we came up with six very deserving winners. We’re proud of our selections, and we believe all our finalists and winners represent the best of the best in their categories.”

We want to congratulate the winners!
 

Best Windows Product

Winner
Imanami GroupID Suite 6

“Imanani’s GroupID Suite solves two pressing problems for Windows identity management. It puts AD in the center of your identity infrastructure by offering a cost-effective alternative to higher-priced identity-management systems, and it also provides much-needed security group lifecycle management.”

Runners-Up
BeyondTrust PowerBroker Desktops, Windows Edition 5.0
ScriptLogic Privilege Authority 2.5
 

Best SQL Server Product

Winner
Idera SQL toolbox

“Idera’s SQL toolbox is an exemplary product that both seasoned DBAs and accidental DBAs can use to effectively manage their SQL Server databases. From its SQL doctor tool, which generates performance-tuning recommendations based on a specific scenario, to its SQL virtual database, which lets you attach backup sets or full backups to SQL Server to access that data without going through the restore process, SQL toolbox’s stand-out collection of utilities meet DBAs’ everyday database administration needs.”

Runners-Up
Quest Software Toad for SQL Server 5.5
SQL Sentry Performance Advisor 6.2
 

Best SharePoint Product

Winner
Axceler ControlPoint 4.5

“Axceler ControlPoint fills a gap in enterprise SharePoint management. It simplifies every aspect of SharePoint administration, from document permission to Office 365 support. The product provides a smooth administrative surface for SharePoint’s rough edges.”

Runners-Up
Fpweb.net FLEXible Private SharePoint Cloud
Idera SharePoint diagnostic manager 2.6
Syntergy Replicator 4.1
 

Best Visual Studio Product

Winner
Developer Express CodeRush 2011

“CodeRush from Developer Express is an intelligent code-generation and refactoring tool that can provide the developer with amazing productivity enhancements. CodeRush is deeply and seamlessly integrated with Visual Studio, and its efficient keyboard shortcuts and Smart Tags really set the product apart from other Visual Studio add-ins. In addition, CodeRush also provides quick code navigation, context-sensitive templates, parameter reordering, and class file generation.”

Runners-Up
Quest Software Toad Extension for Visual Studio 1.5
Telerik Ultimate Collection (AJAX/MVC, Silverlight/WPF, JustCode, ORM, Reporting) 2011
 

Best ASP.NET/Silverlight Product

Winner
Telerik RadControls for Silverlight 2011

“Telerik RadControls for Silverlight is a collection of 60-plus Silverlight controls. One of the features that really sets the Telerik Rad Controls for Silverlight apart is its powerful and integrated data visualization capabilities. Its RadRichTextBox and RadImageEditor provide drop-in support for opening, editing, and saving Microsoft Office documents and images. And the addition of a new Windows 8 metro-like theme enables developers to create metro styles applications today.”

Runners-Up
ComponentOne Studio for ASP.NET Wijmo 2011
Developer Express DXperience Enterprise 2011
 

Best Exchange/Unified Communications Product

Winner
Binary Tree E2E Complete 2

“Moving a Microsoft Exchange Server organization is a nightmare for many admins, but a tool like Binary Tree E2E Complete can help soothe those bad dreams. E2E gives you a simple GUI to perform migrations from legacy Exchange versions to Exchange 2010 or Office 365. You can schedule moves, and the tool can estimate migration time, helping organizations better plan big migrations. Notification messages can be automated and a template email sent to alert end users to upcoming moves, and the message can include a web link to a portal that gives users the chance to change their move schedule and add additional notifications. E2E can handle cross-forest migrations, and the speed is exceptional, generally limited only by other business demands.”

Runners-Up
Proofpoint Enterprise Protection, Privacy and Archive
STEALTHbits Technologies StealthAUDIT Management Platform (SMP) for Exchange 6.0

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