No Longer a Microsoft MVP–Hello MVP Reconnect

Today marks the first time in nearly a decade that I am no longer an MVP. I will be joining the MVP alum in the MVP Reconnect program.

Getting the MVP award every year has become a great side benefit and validation, but the real achievements have been in working with the community and all the things that we’ve accomplished over the last decade!

When I first received the Microsoft MVP award in 2010, it was an achievement I had been working towards and it was something that really validated the work I was doing in the community. It was a goal I had set – to become a Microsoft MVP. When I got it, I was so excited and felt like Microsoft folks were really paying attention to what I was doing. Keep in mind back then that open source wasn’t even a contribution category, but I was doing a lot of talks in the community and working on the Chuck Norris Framework.

After achieving the award for the first time, my focus shifted to primarily doing great things in the community. A lot of that for the last few years has been hands on and I’ve been at the forefront of those efforts. And accordingly, Microsoft continued to validate that what I was doing was important and helpful for developers using Microsoft technologies.

Over the last few years, my role has shifted a bit to building a long term viable business to support the Chocolatey community. This means managing a business and building an amazing team that can help move my vision forward. This last year especially I’ve been focused in that effort of building a great team and that has meant that I’ve had less visible contributions. I’ve been focused enabling my team to do great things, and two of them are MVPs, which is fantastic!

I’m certainly very appreciative of my time as an MVP and have met a lot of amazing folks in the MVP community! I would have loved to have that 10 year blue disk, but Microsoft has rightly saw that my contributions over the last year have not been up to the standard of other folks out there and has made a proper decision on that front.

One thing I will miss is filling out the renewal paperwork every year as it forced me to take some time to reflect on all the great work we were doing in the community, and it put numbers to that work. I think I will look for my own time to do that reflection at some interval, hopefully a bit more often than annually. I always think of this Ferris Bueller quote when I take a moment to reflect. It’s certainly a great quote to apply to your life:

“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in awhile, you could miss it.” – Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

Thank you Microsoft for the opportunity and validation over the years – I’m going to continue doing great things in the community and maybe that will bring me back to the MVP award, but maybe it won’t. And that is totally fine.

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The Next Chapter

Six years ago I started working furiously on this little side project about package management for Windows. It started to grow and over time it became clear that it was going to be something important. A community flourished and there was a tremendous uptake for this little tool.

Fast forward to present, starting soon I will be focused solely on Chocolatey as the Founder of Chocolatey Software, Inc*! It’s an exciting opportunity to really see where we can take this Windows software management thing!

I also could not have had the opportunity to move forward without the support of a tremendous community, who has contributed to Chocolatey’s success in many ways. Your support does not go unnoticed – we will continue to make open source improvements, along with ensuring that organizations can take Chocolatey to the next level with Chocolatey for Business.

Chocolatey.IO - Software Management Automation

It’s a bit bittersweet as I’ve had the opportunity work with a lot of fantastic folks at Puppet and do some really awesome things for furthering automation on Windows. In many ways Puppet has been an amazing place to work (I highly recommend it, they have the remote employee situation handled). However, an opportunity to follow my first love, Chocolatey, is a dream I won’t pass up.

Not everyone gets the opportunity to follow their dreams, so when you get a chance it can be both a thrilling and scary experience! Here’s to the future of Chocolatey and Windows automation!

* – For those keeping track – Chocolatey Software was formed in November 2016 as a spin off of RealDimensions Software, LLC

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Chocolatey For Business / Chocolatey Professional Coming May 2

This is a very exciting time for Chocolatey! Over the past 5 years, there have been some amazing points in Chocolatey’s history. Now we are less than 10 days from another historical moment for Chocolatey – when licensed editions become available for purchase! This is the moment when we are able to offer features that enable businesses to better manage software through Chocolatey and offer non-free features to our community! This also marks when the community (and organizations) take the next step to ensure the longevity of Chocolatey for the next 10-20 years. I started this process with a dream and a Kickstarter and now it’s finally coming to fruition!

Features

Here is a list of the licensed features that will be coming in May. I really think you are going to like what we’ve been cooking up:

  • Malware protection / Virus scanning – Automatic protection from software flagged by multiple virus scanners – Read more…
  • No more 404s – Alternate permanent download location for Professional customers. Read more…
  • Integration with existing Antivirus – Great for businesses that don’t want to reach out to VirusTotal.
  • (Business Only) Create packages from software files/installers – Do you keep all the applications you install for your business internally somewhere? Chocolatey can automatically create packages for all the software your organization uses in under 5 minutes! – Shown as a preview in a March webinar (fast forward to 36:45)
  • Install Directory Switch – You no longer need to worry about the underlying directives to send to native installers to install software into special locations. You can simply pass one directory switch to Chocolatey and it will handle this for you.
  • Support and prioritization of bugs and features for customers.

Sold! But How Do I Buy?

While we are still getting the front end systems setup and ensuring all of the backend systems are in place and working properly, we are limiting availability to the first 500 professional licenses and 20 businesses (Note: we do not expect any issues with our payment processor). Because we are limiting availability, you must register for the Go Live Event at https://chocolatey.eventbrite.com if you are interested.

It bears repeating, the links for purchase will only be sent to folks who have registered for the event, so secure your spot now!

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Chocolatey Has a New Logo!!!

A designer started a conversation with us in December 2014 and we’ve recently come to a decision point on Chocolatey – a new logo (and soon a new website)! A special thanks goes out to Julian Krispel-Samsel!

new_icon

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Bash on Windows–What it Means for Chocolatey

Microsoft announced the most amazing thing at //build/ yesterday, Bash on Windows 10. Not some sort of VM or container, but running native ELF binaries on Windows under an Ubuntu subsystem. Let me say that again slowly. Windows running native Linux binaries. Not recompiled. Go read http://blog.dustinkirkland.com/2016/03/ubuntu-on-windows.html, I’ll wait. :)

Linux geeks can think of it sort of the inverse of “wine” — Ubuntu binaries running natively in Windows.  Microsoft calls it their “Windows Subsystem for Linux” –Dustin Kirkland

In case you missed the announcement, head to https://channel9.msdn.com/Events/Build/2016/KEY01 and fast forward to 48:15.

Almost immediately folks started asking what this means for Chocolatey. It’s a great question. Here’s the low down. This is fantastic for Chocolatey! You now have a fantastic way to get Unix apps and utilities with dpkg/apt in addition to great Windows apps and software with choco. More developers are going to be using the terminal to do things. It means more users of both apt and choco. More productivity for Windows users and developers. Think about that for a second. On no other platform will you have this ability. It’s an exciting time to be in Windows!

What you can expect to see is more collaboration between choco and apt if they can communicate. Just like you can work with choco install -–source windowsfeatures (back in the latest 0.9.10 betas!), expect to see choco install rsync -–source apt. https://github.com/chocolatey/choco/issues/678

Coming up soon you are going to see what’s coming in the next version of Chocolatey and why it is going to amaze you as another big leap in package management for Windows!

Here’s a preview with PowerShell tab completion and updating path (environment variables) without needing to restart PowerShell (https://raw.githubusercontent.com/wiki/chocolatey/choco/images/gifs/choco_install.gif if the image doesn’t show):

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