Introducing Tech.Days Live 2011, 23-25 May
Nine events (and counting), two locations, one week. The main attraction will be three one-day events at the London Vue Cinema, Fulham Broadway, London. In addition, there will be evening activities across town in Victoria at Microsoft's offices in Cardinal Place. We'll be releasing registration details on Twitter as they become available, so follow us to stay informed.
Just like last year, we’ll be running two tracks during the event, one aimed at IT professionals and one at developers. Here’s a taster of the content we’ll be covering:
- Deploying Windows 7 and Office 2010
- Virtualisation, Hyper-V and the private cloud
- Moving infrastructure and platforms to the public cloud
- Building and deploying applications onto the Azure cloud computing platform
- The latest features and futures for Windows Phone 7
- Building rich applications with Silverlight 5
- Deep dives on the web platform, IE 9 and the HTML5
Save the date in your diary now and keep your eyes peeled for more details coming here soon.
Have you taken advantage of our Windows 7 Deployment Learning Portal offer yet?
Take this free online assessment to help you identify the strengths and gaps in your knowledge around Windows 7 deployment and provide some targeted learning steps. If you take the assessment now you could get your mitts on a FREE Windows 7 Resource Kit (worth £54.99; while stocks last), along with 40% off a wide range of MS Press titles. If you’ve already qualified for one of the Windows 7 Resource Kits but have yet to claim, please do remember to do so by the end of February.
To ensure we continue to provide the most relevant resources to you, TechNet has put together a short survey on Cloud Computing to find out where you are on your journey (if at all) and what kind of cloud you are thinking of or already using. All respondents will be entered into a prize draw to win an Xbox and Kinect with 12 months Gold membership to cloud based-service Xbox LIVE. Please complete the survey here for your chance to win!
Terms and conditions here.
Happy New Year to you all
Steve Ballmer did his traditional keynote at the 2011 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) yesterday and made a big announcement in relation to the next version of Windows.
Windows vNext will support System on a Chip (SoC) architectures, including ARM-based systems from partners NVIDIA Corp., Qualcomm Inc. and Texas Instruments Inc. On the x86 architecture, Intel Corporation and AMD continue their work on low-power SoC designs that fully support Windows, including support for native x86 applications. SoC architectures will fuel significant innovation across the hardware spectrum when coupled with the depth and breadth of the Windows platform.
Steven Sinofsky, president of the Windows and Windows Live Division at Microsoft said, “With today’s announcement, we’re showing the flexibility and resiliency of Windows through the power of software and a commitment to world-class engineering. We continue to evolve Windows to deliver the functionality customers demand across the widest variety of hardware platforms and form factors,”
Read about the full announcement here
Wondering what Windows 7 and Windows Optimised Desktop can do for you? We’re launching a new programme at the end of January that gives you step-by-step information and all the resources you need to understand how Windows 7 and Windows Optimised Desktop can significantly streamline your workflows, make your users productive anywhere and reduce costs by streamlining your PC management.
This programme goes through 9 steps, providing all the learning resources, technical guidance, and hands-on know-how you need to plan, deploy, and manage the Windows Optimised Desktop. So that you can follow the programme at a pace that suits you, you can sign up to the email programme or download PDFs. Keep an eye on the blog for details of the programme going live!
Here’s what’s coming:
Step 1: Making your desktop work optimally for you
Step 2: Introducing the Optimised Desktop
Step 3: What’s under the bonnet
Step 4: Choose the right desktop virtualisation option for you
Step 5: Introduction to deployment
Step 6: Learning Resources Bundle – Part 1
Step 7: Learning Resources Bundle – Part 2
Step 8: Creating a training plan for your end-users
Step 9: Useful Tools and Key Resources Post-Deployment
If you’d like more details, drop Sam Taylor a line. Sam’s on her hols next week but she’ll be back on 24th January and will catch up with you then.
Are you a decision maker in your business? If so, Bing Maps and The Ridgian Group would like to invite you to join them on 1st February for a Live Meeting about Corporate Business Intelligence using Bing Maps. Come and find out how you can use Business Intelligence to address your key business priorities, such as:
Products discussed include Microsoft Office SharePoint Server, Microsoft Silverlight, Microsoft SQL Server, among others.
The agenda is as follows:
Happy Friday, one and all – you’ve officially made it through the first two weeks of the working year. Well done. Before your mind turns to that Friday evening excursion to the pub, take a look at this week’s goings on on the blog.
Have a great weekend – see you on Monday.
To help you deploy commercial private and public clouds based on Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V, System Center, and related products, Microsoft offers a set of programs and initiatives called Hyper-V Cloud. These programs can help you:
· Build your own private cloud with help from the Hyper-V Cloud Deployment Guides and Hyper-V Cloud partners.
· Get a pre-validated private cloud configuration from Hyper-V Cloud Fast Track OEM partners. Hyper-V Cloud Fast Track partners have worked with Microsoft to combine hardware and software offerings based on a reference architecture for building private clouds.
· Find a service provider in the Hyper-V Cloud Service Provider Program who can host a dedicated private cloud for you.
Deploying Microsoft’s private cloud infrastructure also positions you to take advantage of the Windows Azure public cloud platform through powerful identity, development, and management tools. These tools span across private and public cloud environments so that you can more easily build, migrate, or extend out to the public cloud and benefit from virtually unlimited scale and even greater efficiencies whenever you need it.
What are you waiting for?!
Huge thanks to Inframon’s Sean Roberts and Gordon McKenna for this post.
Fighting the War on Cost with Microsoft System Center
Inframon was founded in 2005 which was right in the middle of what now can be described as the ‘good times’. Since then we’ve had a major global economic meltdown and a number of our customers have been severely impacted by this with IT budgets slashed and head counts removed. Some of our customers have managed this change well and come out of this relatively unscathed as faster, leaner and better organisations. Others have not fared so well and have disappeared, merged or been restructured to something unrecognisable. None have remained the same.
The current economic state for the European Union is somewhat grim. This is clearly demonstrated in the Gross Domestic Product figures you can see on your screen. From 2007 to 2009 we saw a massive contraction of 9% in economic growth.
The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) measures the total economic output of an area. When this moves into negative figures as we see in 2008 the economy is contracting and therefore, we’re in a recession.
This had some pretty far reaching implications for the economy as a whole:
1. Unemployment across the EU grew to 8.3% from 6.7% just a year earlier.
2. Foreclosures on houses quickened
3. Credit lines to business dried up
4. Business started going bust
The bottom line is – people are spending less.
Some countries were impacted more heavily than others such as Ireland, Spain, Greece and the Baltic states. It wasn’t just the EU that was affected by this; the entire world was affected.
Whilst we can see a small recovery in the UK economy, overall it doesn’t mean we’re necessarily in the clear. Ireland for instance has now officially tipped back into recession (known as a double dip) and has recently been bailed out by the EU. We’re not sure yet if other countries such as the UK, who responded to the crisis with massive stimulus packages and are now embarking upon slashing public spending, will also follow Ireland into the double dip, but there are increasing fears of ‘contagion’ amongst other European nations, including Portugal and Greece. Further to this the UK now faces the renewed challenge of above target inflation figures.
It is natural of course that the credit crisis and economic turmoil would have an impact upon ICT as a whole. Despite our best efforts the reality is that aside from a handful of businesses, IT is still regarded as a cost centre to the business.
Across all of our customers we have come to recognise that there is a war going on, this is the war on cost. At its essence the war on cost dictates that we must now deliver more value to our end users, with less resources and in less time.
There are a number of far reaching implications of the war; we’ve seen a huge swing from build to buy, from insource to outsource, from onsite to cloud. This war has forever changed the face of IT, from IT Professionals to Executives.
Recently Inframon hosted for the second time an event called The War on Cost (www.waroncost.com) at the Churchill War Rooms. This historic site set the theme for the day as a multitude of world class Microsoft and non-Microsoft speakers demonstrated how we can all fight the war on cost using the Microsoft System Center suite of products. Covering the current and future set of products attendees were able to gain unique insights and tips how to plan, architect and deploy System Center to help them fight the war on cost. Feedback from attendees was excellent and today we’re happy to announce that those who didn’t attend are now able to access the content at www.waroncost.com. You’ll also find links to each session at the end of this post.
Hopefully you too can use System Center to fight the war on cost in your organisation.
If you need a little inspiration then remember the words of our wartime leader.
"We shall not fail or falter; we shall not weaken or tire. Neither the sudden shock of battle, nor the long-drawn trials of vigilance and exertion will wear us down.
Give us the tools, and we will finish the job."
Winston Churchill - 9 February 1941
Sean Roberts\Gordon McKenna – Inframon
Inframon are a Microsoft Gold Partner specialising solely in the Microsoft System Center Suite of products. Their Microsoft MVP-led team help help businesses across the UK realise the true benefits of utilising Microsoft System Center to drive down costs across their IT infrastructure.
Watch the War on Cost event videos on Showcase:
Attack the Costs and Complexity of managing mobile devices in your enterprise Microsoft Private Cloud Story Microsoft Keynote - Desktop and Security Convergence Keynote from Gordon McKenna, CEO at Inframon
Microsoft keynote - Datacenter to the Cloud Heterogenous Management with Operations Manager 2007 Operations Manager R2 and V.Next Service Manager - the Better Together Story System Center Configuration Manager v.Next Highlights Datacenter IT Process Automation (Opalis)
Grab a huge handful of Outlook 2010 resources from TechNet’s Outlook 2010 Springboard page, organised conveniently under the following headings:
Happy New Year from me!