Office Migration Planning Manager (OMPM) continues to be a popular tool with our Office IT Pro customers. We still get comments and questions about it from our blog readers and even from our own Microsoft consultants. Our frequent guest blogger and compatibility guru, Curtis Sawin, has been working tirelessly to help our customers understand what OMPM is good for (determining how well your documents will convert to the OpenXML format) and, more importantly, what it's not good for (determining how well your documents will work in Office 2010). He's got a great 3-part blog series and video on the subject if you haven't seen them yet.

Until recently, we didn't have an alternative tool to recommend to help you assess document compatibility. Now that Office 2013 Preview is released, we can tell you all about Office Telemetry Dashboard and how it fits into what we call the "modern" Office compatibility process. Makoto Yamagishi kicked off a new blog series about using Telemetry Dashboard, and we've all got many more blog posts and articles to come. In the meantime, I'll give you an overview of how OMPM and Telemetry Dashboard compare so that you can apply what you know about OMPM and get ramped up quickly on Telemetry Dashboard.

OK, before I continue, I know what you're thinking--"But I'm still planning my Office 2010 migration. What good is a tool for Office 2013?" Well, I've got good news: Telemetry Dashboard isn't just for Office 2013 Preview customers. It also monitors client computers that run Office 2010, Office 2007, and Office 2003. Yes, you'll still need Excel 2013 Preview to view the dashboard, but Office 2013 is free during the preview, and you’ll get Excel 2013 Preview and Telemetry Dashboard as part of that download. So, before you embark on an exhaustive scan of Office documents using OMPM, I hope you'll consider using Telemetry Dashboard instead.

Here's a table that compares OMPM with Telemetry Dashboard to help you learn the key differences.

 

OMPM

Telemetry Dashboard

Where to download

Download it for free from the Microsoft Download Center

Install it as part of Office 2013 Preview

Components

  • Document scanner (offscan.exe)
  • Settings file (Offscan.ini)
  • Import tool (ImportScans.bat)
  • OMPM reports tool (OMPM.accdr)
  • Document converter (OFC.exe)
  • Office Telemetry Agent (deployed to clients)
  • Office Telemetry Processor (service that periodically collects and imports data to the database)
  • Office Telemetry Dashboard (based on Excel 2013 Preview)

Where compatibility and inventory data is stored

SQL database

SQL database

How the data is collected

  1. You run OMPM against shared folders, client computers, and web sites. The resulting data is stored in a shared folder.
  2. You import the data into a SQL database by using ImportScans.bat.

 

 

  1. You deploy Office Telemetry Agent to clients, and you deploy Office Telemetry Processor to a client or server.
  2. You enable and configure the Telemetry Agent using Group Policy.
  3. Office Telemetry Agent periodically scans the client computer for Office inventory and usage data and uploads the data to a shared folder.
  4. Office Telemetry Processor periodically imports the data to the SQL database.

What's collected

OMPM collects lists of binary documents on the sources that it scans. See the full list on TechNet.

 

OMPM doesn't collect data about add-ins or solutions. You'll need Office Environment Assessment Tool (OEAT) for that.

Telemetry Dashboard collects:

  • Office documents that are in users' Most Recently Used list
  • User and system data about monitored clients
  •  Recently used Office add-ins and solutions that are run on monitored clients
  • Compatibility events for Word 2013 Preview, Excel 2013 Preview, PowerPoint 2013 Preview, and Outlook 2013 Preview

 

See the full list on TechNet.

 

 

As you can see from the previous table, there are many differences between the two tools. One of the fundamental differences is that Telemetry Dashboard uses an agent component installed on each client to periodically collect inventory and compatibility data about documents and add-ins that have been recently used by the client. With OMPM, you manually run a scan against different kinds of data sources (clients, shared folders, and websites). We changed the scanning method intentionally because we believe that documents and add-ins that get used often and by multiple users are more business critical than documents and add-ins that haven't been used in awhile. By monitoring only the documents that are being used, you'll save time in your Office deployment planning and piloting.

Another fundamental difference between OMPM and Telemetry Dashboard is that certain Office 2013 Preview applications are designed to report compatibility events, such as application crashes and long load times, to the agent. Not only that, the agent is actually built into Office 2013 Preview clients, so you don’t have to deploy it separately. And, should you want to monitor these events real-time, you can do so from any Office 2013 Preview client by using Office Telemetry Log. (Telemetry Log allows you to view what events have taken place on the local client, compared to Telemetry Dashboard, which consolidates events that occur across all monitored clients into a single dashboard.)

OK, so the built-in agent and compatibility events in Office 2013 Preview won't necessarily help you with your Office 2010 deployments. But by deploying the agent to your Office clients now instead of running exhaustive scans using OMPM, you'll save time in planning your Office 2010 deployment, and you'll have a head start identifying business-critical documents and add-ins. And when the time comes for you to start piloting Office 2013, agent reporting will already be enabled so that you can monitor for compatibility events when your users open their existing documents in Office 2013. And with new support for running Office 2013 side-by-side with earlier versions of Office, user acceptance testing is much easier.

Want to give Telemetry Dashboard a try? See our deployment guidance and subscribe to our blog to see new blog posts.

Jill