David Overton's Blog and Discussion Site
This site is my way to share my views and general business and IT information with you about Microsoft, IT solutions for ISVs, technologists and businesses, large and small. I specialise in Windows Intune and SBS 2008.
This blog is purely the personal opinions of David Overton. If you can't find the information you were looking for e-mail me at admin@davidoverton.com.

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November 2011 - David Overton's Blog

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  • Windows Cloud Essentials Pack–Microsoft Partners can get Windows Intune internal use for free (and Office 365)

    I’m really proud to have passed an exam towards my The Cloud Accelerate program as you can see from my certificate on the left. I have started with the Microsoft Cloud Essentials Pack and I’m now moving up towards cloud accelerate! One of the reasons I like the Essentials Pack is the benefits it provides in terms of software, marketing and simple business tools and there is no fee or sales requirement in the first year! From the web site above, the benefits are: Software Benefits Microsoft Technology License Grant Microsoft Office 365 250 licenses Windows Intune Subscription for 25 PCs Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online 250 licenses Windows Azure platform 750 hours of extra-small-compute instance, 25 hours of small-compute instance, 20 gigabytes of storage, and 250,000 storage transactions Microsoft SQL Azure Web Edition database: 1 gigabyte Windows Azure AppFabric: 100,000 access control transactions and 2 service bus connections Data transfer: 25 gigabytes in and 25 gigabytes out Marketing Benefits Listing as Cloud Essentials partner on the Microsoft Pinpoint online marketplace Listing in the Microsoft Office 365 Marketplace Marketing resources Business Benefits Online sales and financial modelling tools Demo Showcase Profitability Modeller Presales and technical support Online Technical Communities for cloud services Requirements For Partners Who Sell and Service For Partners Who Build and Develop Enrol in the Microsoft Partner Network. Sign the Microsoft Online Services Partner Agreement (MOSPA) and complete introductory training and an assessment. To continue receiving these benefits in your second year of enrolment, you must meet a modest sales requirement of 50 seats per product during your first year of enrolment. Enrol in the Microsoft Partner Network. Sign up on Microsoft Platform Ready and register your application. Annual Fee There is no fee for this program. Thanks David
  • Windows Intune IDC report–A Blueprint for Success for Microsoft Partners–the ups and downs

    I’ve found another document from the March timeframe from IDC (sponsored by Microsoft) about Windows Intune.  This one talks about how to be successful with Windows Intune.  It can be found here . One area worth exploring in the document is the section entitled “Opportunity Areas for Existing PC Management Practices”. One partner is quoted as saying "I think we could cover more customers than we could today. I don't think we have realized how big the potential is. It could help us win new deals and bigger deals." It does not pull punches either and discusses some areas that partners have been talking to me about.. New Budget Line Item for the Customer The largest change is that for the most part, other third-party, on-premise PC management tools are purchased by partners, and the partners must cover the expense of the tools with their PC management revenue. In contrast, with Windows Intune, the customer signs up for the service with Microsoft, and Microsoft bills the customer directly. What this effectively means is that with Windows Intune, the customer must pay not only the PC management fees to the service provider but also a (new) fee to Microsoft. Microsoft partners face the choice of continuing to charge their standard PC management service price, which results in an effective increase in overall fees the customer must pay, or reducing the price they charge to their customers, which reduces their overall profitability per engagement but keeps the customer whole. Another potential downside to the solution provider is a reduction in customers' stickiness; customers using Windows Intune as their PC management tool could easily pick up their service and move it to another Windows Intune–capable solution provider.          Benefits to the Partner While the challenges to the solution provider business model were viewed as the largest downsides of the Windows Intune model, solution providers interviewed also saw some benefits. One is the lack of hassle...
  • How Windows Intune can lower costs and raise productivity

    Hi, Just a quick post to share this document from IDC (sponsored by Microsoft) on Windows Intune from March 2011.  It can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/presskits/cloud/docs/IntuneWP.pdf . It shows how companies can benefit from savings of $702 per year through IT staff savings, user productivity and removal of other tools. ttfn David
  • Using Windows Intune with Autotask and ConnectWise

    Having spoken to several partners yesterday at the SMB MVT Tour I mentioned MS CRM’s integration with Windows Intune, but I thought it was worth sharing information on integration with Autotask and ConnectWise. Training and whitepapers can be found here: ConnectWise Windows Intune and Professional Services Automation: ConnectWise Learn about the integration between Windows Intune and business operation system ConnectWise, which offers customer relationship management, service request tracking, sales force automation, and more. (Online, 1 hour) Whitepaper - https://partner.microsoft.com/40165832 Autotask Windows Intune PSA Tools: Autotask This professional services automation (PSA) presentation showcases how to connect Windows Intune and Autotask to help manage customer relationships in a single system. Covers customer relationship management, service requests, contracts, billing management, and reporting. (Online, 1 hour) Whitepaper - https://partner.microsoft.com/40165830 Thanks David
  • Free internal use Windows Intune, Office 365, Dynamics CRM Online licenses for Microsoft Partners through Cloud Essentials and Cloud Accelerate

    While asking at Microsoft of any information they wanted me to share about Windows Intune Olivia asked me to share this.  I think this is so key, I will share this on the blog too.  Something to remember is that you can join Windows Intune ticketing up to Dynamics CRM Online for a more joined up helpdesk experience. Cloud Essentials is a free programme for all MOSPA-registered partners, without sales or reference obligations. Partners just need to sign up at www.microsoftcloudpartner.com and they can then sign in at this portal to receive the following benefits: Internal user rights for: • 250 licences of Office 365 • 25 subscriptions for Windows Intune • 250 licences for Dynamics CRM Online • Marketing resources • Demo showcase • Profitability Modeller • Online technical communities for Cloud • Listing as Cloud Essentials partner on Microsoft PinPoint online marketplace For partners who are actively selling Cloud, they could become Cloud Accelerate partners after completing three deals (with 150 aggregated seats) of Office365, Intune and/or Dynamics CRM Online, they would receive the following additional benefits: · Increased internal user rights for Intune (100 subscriptions) · Prioritised listing as Cloud Accelerate partner of Microsoft PinPoint online marketplace · Marketing resources · Demo showcase · Profitability Modeller · Online technical communities for Cloud · Microsoft Office 365 Practice Accelerator · 20 partner technical advisory hours · Specialised Cloud training More information can be found about this on www.microsoftcloudpartner.com , or for any partner queries around this scheme please feel free to forward my details. Kind regards, Olivia Excellent information if you were not aware. David
  • Manage customers with #Windows #Intune and Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online (Updated)

    As a Microsoft partner (or customer), you can connect Windows Intune to MS-CRM to enable management ticketing from MS-CRM for client computers managed through Windows Intune. The details of how to configure this can be found at https://partner.microsoft.com/india/40169122 and it states “This document shows how Managed Services Providers (MSPs) can use Windows Intune™ in conjunction with Microsoft Dynamics® CRM Online to create and manage customer contracts, establish and automate internal business processes, and create cases based on email messages sent by alerts that track against a customer’s contract.” It also states that: As organizations build their Windows Intune MSP capabilities, they can use Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online to: Track customer accounts. Create and manage contracts and service-level agreements (SLAs) with customers. Create and track cases against customer SLAs. Assign customer cases to Windows Intune technicians. Create workflows and dialogs that enforce standardized business practices. Schedule required customer tasks for Windows Intune technicians. The setup is documented in the file, although the alerting is quite simple: [Updated information] Since posting this it turns out that there is some key information missing. This was highlighted in this forum post http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-GB/windowsintuneprod/thread/0991538d-2a3d-48de-99b4-a1f0fcf51afe and has the following information: I'm afraid this white paper is missing a very important prerequisite of E-mail Router. I mean the whitepaper does not mention the fact that CRM online is not an e-mail client, and cannot receive e-mail messages sent by Windows Intune to notification recipient. For this purpose you need an E-mail Router. E-mail router function can be solved several ways, maybe this link will be helpful: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/crm/archive/2011/05/19/crm-online-e-mail-router-yes-we-do-that.aspx I hope this is useful. David
  • Log files on each PC with Windows Intune

    Windows Intune is a cloud based management service with alerts and information stored in the Microsoft cloud, however sometimes it is very useful to see what is going on, on the actual PC. There are various log files that can be found on the client PC should you wish to explore. These are found at %ProgramFiles%\microsoft\onlinemanagement\logs . We can see several files in here, of which the following are particularly interesting if we want to go diving into the product: Enrollment – This file details the process of a computer enroling with Windows Intune. If the computer fails to appear in the Windows Intune list of computers, this is the log to watch. If enrollment to Windows Intune for the computer was successful we should see the following in the log file: 2011-10-05 09:00:46:615 12260 2d7c Enroll ********* 2011-10-05 09:00:46:615 12260 2d7c Enroll ** END ** Enroll: StartUpdateAgentService: Online Management Updates Service started, or already running 2011-10-05 09:00:46:615 12260 2d7c Enroll ************* HostProtection – This log provides details of any anti-malware activity on the computer. For example, a malware entry will be logged as below: 2011-11-14 13:35:28:093 4076 2b78 EventConsumer::ReportMalwareStatusEvent() - <sco:MalwareStatusEvent xmlns:sco="schemas.microsoft.com/management/services/hostprotection/2009/01" ActivityType="FullStatusResync"> <MalwareStatus> <ID>7480</ID> <Name>RemoteAccess:Win32/RealVNC</Name> <URL> http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=37020&amp;name=RemoteAccess%3AWin32%2FRealVNC&amp;threatid=7480 </URL> <Severity>Moderate</Severity> <Category>RemoteControlSoftware</Category> <CurrentStatus>Quarantined</CurrentStatus> <ExecutionStatus>NotBlocked</ExecutionStatus> <LastEventTime>2011-10-22T13:16:50.303630900Z</LastEventTime> <NumDetections>1</NumDetections> </MalwareStatus> PolicyAgent – In here, we can see what...
  • How to find out about service disruption for Office 365, BPOS, Windows Azure and Windows Intune

    Hi, I got this e-mail from Microsoft, but wanted to share with all should you ever need to get this information.  The key elements are:       1. Today: Educate Yourself 2. During the Event: Stay Informed 3. After the Event: Understand the Situation 1. View service status via the Service Health Dashboards BPOS: Americas: https://health.noam.microsoftonline.com Europe: https://health.emea.microsoftonline.com Asia/Pacific: https://health.apac.microsoftonline.com Windows Azure Service Health Dashboard Windows Intune Service Service Status 2. Office 365 Within the Dashboard, Click on "Service Health" in the left column of the Admin Overview under Support 3. Sign up for Windows Azure and BPOS-S RSS Feeds via the Service Health Dashboards 1. Track customer updates on the service dashboards 2. Subscribe to Twitter Handles: @MSOnline @Office365 @Windows Intune @Windows Azure The Microsoft Online Services Team will convey the latest updates via the above Twitter Accounts. 1. Request the Post Incident Report (PIR) from Support. 2. Meet with your customers to assess the impact. 3. Provide your feedback and feedback on behalf of your customers around the event and communication process. Thanks David Technorati Tags: Windows Intune , Intune , Office 365 , Azure , BPOS , Microsoft
  • Important Notice from Windows Intune about upgrades–you need to uninstall the beta!

    Hi, I just got this alert from Windows Intune which tells me that the beta service will end soon and that I need to uninstall the beta software and if I have a full account, install the new software (or old software to then be upgraded) Important Notice Account:  David Overton Associates Source:    Path:        Type:  Important Notice Description We are pleased to announce that the new features and enhancements that were offered in the Windows Intune July 2011 beta are now commercially available! If you have a paid Windows Intune subscription, your service will be upgraded over the next few weeks, so that you can take advantage of these new features. You do not need to take any action. Your subscription and deployed Windows Intune clients will be automatically upgraded. Two weeks prior to your upgrade date, you will see an alert displayed in the Windows Intune administrator console that indicates the exact date and time when your subscription will be upgraded. If you participated in the Windows Intune July 2011 beta, please note that the beta service will conclude 30 days after the Windows Intune general availability date. After this date, you will no longer be able to access your beta account, and all account data will be deleted. If you choose to sign up for a trial or purchase the commercial release of Windows Intune, you must uninstall the Windows Intune July 2011 beta client software, restore your computers to their original pre-beta state, and install the new client software on all computers that you want to manage with Windows Intune. We highly recommend that you remove the client software and restore your computers to their pre-beta state, even if you choose not to continue using Windows Intune. An uninstall script has been made available to make this task easier. You can download the script here: http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=219678 . View this alert in the Windows Intune console:  https://manage.microsoft.com/Site/App.aspx I’ve done a few uninstalls,...
  • Office 365 integration module beta for Windows SBS 2011 Essentials

    Hi, I just saw this on the wires and wanted to share it, although please note that this build is for evaluation purposes only. You should not install this in a production environment. Microsoft does not license you for, nor support installing in these environments. You can download the preview package from by navigating to it in the download section of the connect site or by using this link . Please refer to Release Documentation for installation and uninstallation instructions. Feedback is very important to Microsoft. In order for Microsoft to gather feedback on any issues encountered while using this build, please submit all bug reports for this release using the bug reporting form on MS Connect , via the http://connect.microsoft.com/SBS web site. It goes without saying that in order to participate in the Beta Program you need to be signed up on the connect site. Thanks David Technorati Tags: SBS 2011 , Office 365 , Cloud , Microsoft , SBSC

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