Windows technology vendors entered more than 260 products in 10 categories in the Windows & .NET Magazine Network Best of TechEd 2004 contest. Senior Technical Editor Michael Otey and Senior Contributing Editor David Chernicoff evaluated the entries according to strategic importance in the market, competitive advantage, and value to the customer. They selected winners in each of the categories (see Table 1) and presented three special awards: Most Interesting New Product, Editors' Choice for Services, and Overall Best of TechEd.

The Most Interesting New Product award went to XPrime Database Accelerator. "XPrime Database Accelerator provides linear scaling and improves the performance of SQL Server," Otey said. "No schema or database changes are required. It truly offers a transparent solution to database management." Postini Perimeter Manager received the Editors' Choice for Services award. Chernicoff commented, "Postini Perimeter Manager is a great service because it gives the power of a dedicated email manager to organizations that can't afford one." AMD's AMD64 Platform received the Overall Best of TechEd award. According to Otey, "Simply put, the AMD64 Platform redefines the way people think about the future of x86 architecture computing."