Wednesday, 4 January 2012

Probably the most (only) useful "Predictions for 2012" list I've found so far - Gartner Industry Trends

"Gartner, Inc. has revealed its top predictions for IT organizations and users for 2012 and beyond. Analysts said that the predictions herald changes in control for IT organizations as budgets, technologies and costs become more fluid and distributed."

The original full post is here: - you should check it out for the full list, but here are the highlights;

"Many industry business models will be challenged through 2015 as customers continue to adopt an always-connected digital lifestyle and market competitors exploit emerging technologies to achieve business growth and success,"

"Gartner analysts are highlighting the emerging trends that — once addressed — will better position industry leaders to align their business practices with the needs of customer and business partners"

"Cloud computing and social media will continue to provide industries with new avenues for effective customer communication and engagement, facilitating increased revenue and sustainable interaction with key customers," 
"New technologies such as media tablets and advances in mobile will have a disruptive impact on many industries, requiring changes to existing processes and propelling business transformation."

The top industry predictions include:
  • By 2016, most consumers in mature markets will consider in-vehicle Web access a key criterion in their automobile purchase.
  • By 2015, new, external social Web and cloud-based services will generate 25 percent of consumer-driven banking products and services.
  • By 2016, the iPad will gain less than 50 percent of the K-12 market as CIOs favor devices that are deployed more readily.
  • By 2015, 30 percent of smart grid projects will leverage cloud services to address big data from converging technologies.
  • By 2013, government financial sustainability will join cost containment as the top driver and constraint for government IT spending.
  • Until 2015, ineffective IT/OT management will risk serious failures in more than 50 percent of enterprises, and critical failures in asset-dependent ones.

Cloud Storage is a major trend from 2011 that will only grow in 2012

With more cloud services appearing there's a natural demand for more cloud/online storage.  2011 saw cloud storage become more mainstreatm:  the Apple iCloud appeared, and rounds of funding/IPO from Dropbox, Carbonite etc. all helped the push of these services into the SME end of the market.
Cloud Storage Start-ups

The Unmissable Cloud and Hosting Events for 2012

Here are my top cloud and hosting events, conferences and summits for 2012 - I hope to see you at some of these.

Parallels Summit, Orlando 14-16 Feb

Microsoft Hosting Summit, Bellevue WA, 27-29 March

Microsoft MMS 2012, Las Vegas 16-20 April
Microsoft Management Summit, aka System Centre deep-dive.

TechEd Europe, Amsterdam 25-29 June

Microsoft WPC, Toronto 08-12 July

HostingCon, Boston MA, 16-18 July

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

It's time for "three screens and a cloud" - Microsoft in 2012

2011 for Microsoft was all about telling us what to look forward to.

2012 will be when that talk becomes real. 2012 will be when lots of Microsoft's talk becomes real.

Microsoft has talked of its "three screens and a cloud" strategy—the plan to have Microsoft software on the PC (which, in Redmond's view, includes the tablet), the TV, and the phone, with the Microsoft-powered cloud tying everything together. In 2012, this strategy is going to become visible in a way it hasn't been before.

How Microsoft Deployed System Center Configuration Manager 2012

If you're looking at System Centre 2012 then this video from TechNet Edge is a great insight into the "how's and why's" of a large SCCM deployment.
Configuration Manager 2012 was built on the vision of a user-centric client-management model with the vision of empowering the user, unifying infrastructure, and extending management control across the platform. With Configuration Manager 2012, we have improved Client Patching, end point protection, better compliance/reporting and management of devices synching with the network.

Top 5 Reasons to Choose Hyper-V R2 SP1 over VMware vSphere 5

1. Tremendous Momentum & Strong Adoption by Customers
2. Built-in Virtualization & Familiarity with Windows
3. Hyper-V Best Choice for Virtualizing Microsoft Workloads
4. Superior, Richer Management Capabilities with System Center
5. Windows Server 8 Hyper-V & VMware Memory and Per-VM pricing


Sunday, 10 July 2011

WPC11 - LA, Day 0

Day 0, is always a day of travel.   As ever, Virgin delivered a good flight from London into California, 11 hours but all good really.  What hurt was a further 2 hours to get through LAX immigration and customs.  Let's no mention the taxi ride out to West Hollywood!   We've chosen to stay a little outside of the WPC11 hotel area in Downtown LA.   It's no less crowded in West Hollywood and there's traffic everywhere you go it seems, but we've lucked out with a very very nice hotel for the same rate as downtown.

Dinner with some of the team from Outsourcery last night and we ended up discussing the finer points of Lync whilst enjoying the LA view from SoHo House on Sunset Boulevard.

Sunday today, need to put finishing touches to my slides for Tuesday's Breakout Session with the PM for Hyper-V Cloud,
7/12/11, 4:30pm – 5:30pm, LACC 511BC (Top Reasons to Choose Hyper-V over VMware to Build your Private Clouds)

We also need to get to the convention centre and register.  Then it's the UK Welcome night for a couple of easy drinks and a first showing of the @Outsourcery WPC11 shirts!


Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Details of System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2012 Beta are released

Download the VMM 2012 BETA Eval from

"System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2012 delivers industry leading fabric managment, virtual machine management and services deployment in private cloud environments. Virtual Machine Manager 2012 offers key new features that include hypervisor creation and management, network management, storage management, private cloud creation, self-service usage and service creation. It features deep investments in server application virtualization, service design and service modeling all of which can be used to efficiently offer an on-premises private cloud. "

Feature Summary
  • Fabric Management
    • Hyper-V and Cluster Lifecycle Management – Deploy Hyper-V to bare metal server, create Hyper-V clusters, orchestrate patching of a Hyper-V Cluster
    • Third Party Virtualization Platforms - Add and Manage Citrix XenServer and VMware ESX Hosts and Clusters
    • Network Management – Manage IP Address Pools, MAC Address Pools and Load Balancers
    • Storage Management – Classify storage, Manage Storage Pools and LUNs
  • Resource Optimization
    • Dynamic Optimization – proactively balance the load of VMs across a cluster
    • Power Optimization – schedule power savings to use the right number of hosts to run your workloads – power the rest off until they are needed
    • PRO – integrate with System Center Operations Manager to respond to application-level performance monitors
  • Cloud Management
    • Abstract server, network and storage resources into private clouds
    • Delegate access to private clouds with control of capacity, capabilities and user quotas
    • Enable self-service usage for application administrator to author, deploy, manage and decommission applications in the private cloud
  • Service Lifecycle Management
    • Define service templates to create sets of connected virtual machines, os images and application packages
    • Compose operating system images and applications during service deployment
    • Scale out the number of virtual machines in a service
    • Service performance and health monitoring integrated with System Center Operations Manager
    • Decouple OS image and application updates through image-based servicing
    • Leverage powerful application virtualization technologies such as Server App-V


Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Microsoft has released Update Rollup 15 for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0

Microsoft has released Update Rollup 15 for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 Server, Microsoft Dynamics CRM for Microsoft Office Outlook, Microsoft Dynamics CRM Data Migration Manager, Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 Language Packs, and Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 E-mail Router.

For more information about this release, see Microsoft Knowledge Base article 2449283.


Monday, 22 November 2010

Microsoft has released Update Rollup 14 for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 Server

For more information about this release, see Microsoft Knowledge Base article 2389019:

Also applies to Microsoft Dynamics CRM for Microsoft Office Outlook, Microsoft Dynamics CRM Data Migration Manager, Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 Language Packs, and Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 E-mail Router.

Podcast and Overview:


Tuesday, 9 November 2010

More info on the Hyper-V Cloud announcement at TechEd Europe 2010

Hyper-V Cloud was announced at Microsoft TechEd Europe 2010 in Berlin yesterday in a a keynote by Microsoft’s Brad Anderson (Corp. VP for Management & Security Division)

Following the announcement of its platform-as-a-service offering Windows Azure at PDC10, Microsoft showed further detail of its cloud strategy, which stretches across public and private cloud, with solutions to meet the needs of various businesses.

The announcement of Hyper-V Cloud uses the Windows Server platform to build out private cloud infrastructures.  Hyper-V Cloud includes a set of programs and initiatives designed to accelerate the deployment and success of these clouds.
There are multiple elements to Hyper-V Cloud, including:
  • Hyper-V Cloud Fast Track: Microsoft is collaborating with Dell, Fujitsu, Hitachi, HP, IBM and NEC to deliver a broad choice of pre-defined, validated configurations for private cloud deployments.
  • Hyper-V Cloud Service Provider Program: A group of more than 70 service providers around the world offering infrastructure as a finished, fully-hosted service built on Microsoft’s technology that customers can use to implement a private cloud. 
  • Hyper-V Cloud Deployment Guides: Allows customers to build their own private clouds on top of existing infrastructure investments through new tools and guidance.
  • Hyper-V Cloud Accelerate: To tie it all together, Microsoft is making significant investments to help customers and partners fund assessments, proofs-of-concept, and production deployments.
It's another example of how Microsoft is enbracing the world of cloud computing and are helping their partners on this journey.


Microsoft System Center Virtual Machine Manager Self-Service Portal 2.0 is RTM!


Microsoft System Center Virtual Machine Manager Self-Service Portal 2.0

VMMSSP (also referred to as the self-service portal) is a fully supported, partner-extensible solution built on top of Windows Server 2008 R2, Hyper-V, and System Center VMM.

You can use it to pool, allocate, and manage resources to offer infrastructure as a service and to deliver the foundation for a private cloud platform inside your datacenter.
VMMSSP includes a pre-built web-based user interface that has sections for both the datacenter managers and the business unit IT consumers, with role-based access control. VMMSSP also includes a dynamic provisioning engine.

VMMSSP reduces the time needed to provision infrastructures and their components by offering business unit “on-boarding,” infrastructure request and change management.

Now you can download the release of SSP 2.0 on this link