Wow, what a big set of weeks the past few have been (and I've been too busy doing other things to blog)...

First Microsoft has settled with Eolas, allowing Internet Explorer users to move away from having to click on certain embedded controls to activate them. Of course, if you followed this MSDN page, your users didn't have to "click" at all, but shortly Internet Explorer should revert to its previous behaviour. A post on the IE blog has more details.

Secondly, the IIS Product Group has released the FastCGI module for IIS 6.0 (this module will also be included out of the box for IIS 7.0). Previously, when using CGI applications (such as PHP in CGI mode), each request resulted in the creation of a separate process to handle that request. Creating processes is (relatively) quite expensive on the Windows platform, so CGI application scalability was quite poor (instead, within a single process, you'd use mulitple threads). The FastCGI module allows for a persistant process, with one or more threads handling requests (if the CGI application was single threaded, then you'd still serialise requests, but you'd still gain the benefit of avoiding process creation and destruction). The IIS Product Group are claiming 10x and 20x performance boosts for many common CGI applications (PHP, PERL) - so this is definately worth investigating if you are running CGI applications on IIS.

Thirdly, Visual Studio.NET 2008 (and .NET Framework v3.5) was released about a week ago (see how far behind I am with these posts!)

And lastly, I heard from my editor today that Professional IIS 7.0 (Wrox Press) should be released on 21st Jan 2008. If you're really desperate, you can pre-order it on - though the cover will be slightly different (i.e. no random dude)