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Week in review: Rights management, on-demand software, and nonexistent job references

Another week has flown by, taking with it more IT information you may have missed. Here's a quick recap of the highlights, including stories about SCO, Windows Rights Management, and hiring issues.

Maybe you were preoccupied by the Cubs' attempt to make the World Series, or perhaps you were caught up in a demanding Windows 2003 migration. But no matter what consumed your week, important IT news and information may have slipped through the cracks. So, to kick off the week ahead, here's a recap of some of the key items you may have missed.

Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
Last week, reported that 84 percent of CIOs surveyed by Credit Suisse First Boston had no intention of changing their Linux deployments no matter how SCO's litigation turns out. Coincidence or not, also reported that SCO was backing off on its plan to send invoices to Linux users. Meanwhile, on TechProGuild, subscribers learned how to use Evolution to allow Linux users to access Exchange servers as easily as Windows clients using Outlook.

Know your rights
Rights management is one of the new buzzwords flying around the Internet nowadays. Microsoft has even included rights management in the latest version of Office. This new feature caught Tim Landgrave's attention last week when he looked at Microsoft's implementation and discussed whether it's good or bad.

Looking out for #1
The natural reaction in most situations is to make sure that when a problem comes up, you come out on top. But contributor Becky Roberts found a support tech who put the problem first, no matter how it made him look, and wound up winning in the end.

Danger Will Robinson!
You've got to quickly wipe a bunch of PCs' hard drives before reissuing them to new users. What's the quickest way, short of using a bulk eraser? Bill Detwiler showed how to use the Danger floppy to quickly and safely erase data from multiple machines.

You want it when?
The hardest part of purchasing applications for your users is ensuring that you don't buy too many licenses, thereby wasting money, or buy too few licenses, forcing you to quickly buy new, potentially more expensive ones. Gartner discussed the emerging technology of on-demand software, which allows you to buy software as you need it but still save money. TechRepublic members offered alternatives to Gartner's suggestions.

As if spam wasn't bad enough
Usually, when your e-mail inbox gets spammed, it's the result of tons of messages you don't want. But what happens when you're working on a project and get overwhelmed with e-mail about it? This kind of spam can be as bad as the commercial kind. Shannon Kalvar provided some tips for streamlining e-mail in your organization.

Should I stay or should I go?
Exchange 2003 is the newest member of Microsoft's messaging family, but plenty of organizations are still running Exchange 5.5. Microsoft has recently decided to extend support on Exchange 5.5 for a little while longer. Brien Posey discussed whether you should move to Exchange 2003 now despite this reprieve or whether you should keep running Exchange 5.5 until the wheels fall off. One member's suggestion: Do neither.

Jobs, jobs, jobs
TechRepublic ran several articles last week about hiring. Molly Joss shared some preparation tips you can use to get the right new employee when hiring time comes around again. She also explained what to do when you check references and discover they don't exist. Finally, Chip Nickolett told you how to get the right new person for your consultancy.

You've got answers, we've got questions
TechRepublic members may enjoy debating issues in the Discussion Center, but they also like to help each other with technical problems in the Technical Q&A area, earning TechPoints for each answer. Some of the questions asked last week include:

From the forums
TechRepublic's Discussion Center was buzzing as usual last week. Our Windows XP discussion reignited with member discussion of several problems with the OS, including annoyance about the new patches. Likewise, the Microsoft Office discussion picked up some traffic as members discussed issues surrounding Word and Excel. With security a constant concern, the discussion about alternative methods of virus protection generated lots of diverse opinions. But, as usual, noncomputer topics ruled the week, with discussions about Iraq and sympathy for Chicago Cub fans getting considerable attention.

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