As I breathe in the fresh air of 2009, I relish the opportunity to forget all my 2008 wrongs and look forward (overconfidently) to a new year of promises kept and resolutions met. Given that my 2008 was plagued by way too many bad-mannered vote-offs in negatively focused reality TV shows, I’d like to start my year positively with my 8 favorite resources from last year.

  • Cloud computing roundtable at TechEd 2008, parts 1 and 2—Executive Editors Amy Eisenberg and Jeff James interview experts Sean Deuby, Guido Grillenmeier, Michael Otey, Rhonda Layfield, and Mark Minasi concerning their thoughts about cloud computing.
  • “10 Reasons to Deploy Windows Vista” (November 2008, InstantDoc ID 99986)—If you read my blog post “Love at First Vista” (InstantDoc ID 96849), you know that I said goodbye to Windows XP without a second thought. Mark Minasi’s arguments provide good reason to feel that way.
  • “10 Reasons Not to Deploy Windows Vista” (November 2008, InstantDoc ID 99988)—I like Vista, so this one is strictly for those readers who don't. (And because Alan Sugano makes some good points, I suppose.)
  • “PowerShell 101, Lesson 1” (February 2008, InstantDoc ID 97742)—PowerShell earned its name in 2008 with its explosion into the IT industry. This article will help you get started with this powerful yet flexible scripting language.
  • “Gold Medal SharePoint Applications in Beijing” (August 2008, InstantDoc ID 99504)— If getting Dan Holme's behind-the-scenes perspective on NBC's coverage of the 2008 Olympic Games isn't enough of an attraction, his four real-life Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 solutions make this article a must-read.
  • “Apple Envy in Redmond” (October 2008, InstantDoc ID 100045)—If there’s anything I like more than someone who knows his stuff, it’s someone who knows other stuff too. Jeff James’ first Everything But Microsoft column shows that there’s more to care about than what’s-its-name in Washington state.
  • “New Belgium Brews a Potent Unified Communications Combo” (December 2007, InstantDoc ID 97481)—A December 2007 article doesn’t quite count, but it’s close enough, and it's a great real-life overview of a unified communications setup, so you just have to give me this one. (Besides, it’s about a brewery!)
  • “If I Ran Microsoft” video contest entries—People like you sharing what they would do if they were in charge. Need I say more?