Project Codename Sundance Beta – Windows Security Accelerator

And Office

Microsoft has debuted into Beta a new project designed to bulletproof the Windows platform along with the Office System. Codenamed Sundance, the project deals with the creation of a solution accelerator designed to make the latest iterations of Windows and Office more appealing to corporate infrastructures. Essentially, the Solution Accelerators–Security and Compliance team from Microsoft behind Sundance is offering a solution set up to streamline tasks including the operating system and application hardening, but also the complex process of implementing security settings, as well as enforcing compliance in accordance with a security baseline.

“This Solution Accelerator builds on previous Microsoft security guidance and is aimed at helping you configure and deploy security settings for both Windows and Office 2007. With more than 700 security setting recommendations, the guidance and tools included should help fine-tune the security posture of your Windows and Office 2007 deployments,” Paul Cooke, director Windows Client group, stated.

“After deploying the security settings, you can even verify the settings and monitor policy changes by using one or more of 18 new configuration packs designed for the Desired Configuration Management (DCM) feature of Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager 2007.”

Cooke revealed that the Beta for Sundance was live on Microsoft Connect, where a survey awaited those that wanted to participate in the testing process. First and foremost, as it is the case with the additional security accelerators from Microsoft, Sundance is set up to deliver not only a higher level of security for IT infrastructures, but also to accelerate the deployment of the Redmond company's software products.

When it comes down to deployment, Sundance will bring to the table both predefined templates and automated tools, put together to simplify the process of configuring security settings and monitoring the security baselines.

Sundance will also “provide higher reliability – eliminate a number of manual steps and get faster, more reliable security results; [At the same time the solution accelerator] includes information about hundreds of security and privacy setting options, as well as recommendations for each one based on best practices [and can] manage security setting changes in Windows operating systems and Office applications that otherwise could place the integrity of your IT systems at risk,” Cooke added.

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