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.

To find out more about my Windows Intune BOOK - Microsoft Windows Intune 2.0: Quickstart Administration click here

To find out more about my SBS 2008 BOOK - Small Business Server 2008, Installation, Migration and Configuration click here

Browse by Tags

David Overton's Blog

Buy my books

Windows Intune:Quickstart Administration


This is the RAW book (Read as Written).
Click here for more information
Buy or pre-order today

SBS 2008 - Installation, Migration and Configuration

Small Business Server 2008 – Installation, Migration, and Configuration

Buy today in book or e-book form

Request a Review Copy

Twitter

Syndication

  • VDI and great video performance using RemoteFX (and licensing it)

    Having written a little about VDI and RHSD the other day, I see that Register has an item about RemoteFX and playing games.  This uses the technology of RDS as well as either VDI or RSHD. While you can play games, Windows 7 renders in all it’s glory too.  One word of warning from a licensing front.  If you are using RemoteFX then you will need an RDS CAL when you are buying the licenses as RemoteFX is licensed by the RDS CAL and remote admin tasks that you can do on a server without needing a RDS CAL does not include playing games (IMHO).  You also need to check that you have a client device that can handle RemoteFX.  While platforms like Citrix, Quest and VMware will enable various remote access technologies that do not use RemoteFX (Citrix and Quest will even allow the use of their own technology or RemoteFX) the device chosen still requires the capabilities to display the high quality applications and games, even if not enough to process it all in the first place! For example, for Citrix to use the GPU on the client to redirect Aero, it requires a Windows Client, even if it is not Windows 7.  Look at http://support.citrix.com/proddocs/topic/xendesktop-als/hd-aero-redirection.html for an example: Hardware Windows Aero capable DirectX 9-class GPU that supports: Pixel Shader 2.0 32 bits per pixel 128MB memory 2 GHz non-mobile central processing unit (CPU). Citrix recommends 3 GHz for optimal performance. Note: Dual monitor sessions are supported for user devices with a single GPU. A single GPU is defined as a single entry under Display adapters in Device Manager and not as the number of PCI cards plugged in the device. A single PCI card can have multiple GPUs on it. Software DirectX 9.0c runtime (Windows 7, Windows Vista, or Windows XP) What this all means is that you still need a good graphics card somewhere – the desktop or the server and some reasonable network bandwidth if you want good graphics!   ttfn David
  • Understanding more about Desktop Virtualisation–VDI and RHSD and how to license it

    [updated 12-Jan 2012 with images and notes about a hosted solution] This is part two of the discussion around VDI and RHSD and this section looks at licensing.  I am frequently asked questions about Microsoft licensing as I look after the relationship between Citrix and Microsoft in the UK. I often hear people getting confused about how to license, or even worse, assuming that licenses are somehow free when using a VDI or DV (Desktop Virtualisation) solution. Having seen the article at Computer Weekly I decided I would share some thoughts on how to get it right. I should say, while I have a lot of experience, always talk to a Microsoft Licensing Specialist . Always! The second comment is that these are my thoughts and experiences not those of Microsoft’s. Always verify your understanding of licensing with a specialist.  Get out the legal documents if required (I do link to the relevant sections) and get formal comments from a certified licensing specialist if you require it. Microsoft licensing moves forward to enable more customer scenarios all the time, so by the time I hit send, it could be out of date already.  To quote from the article above, which is very good (except for the licensing sidebar which is confusing IMHO) “But one research firm that has looked at Microsoft’s new EA, has found that Microsoft has, in fact, simplified client access licensing. “ If you are not sure what VDI, RHSD (Remote Hosted Shared Desktop – or RDS/TS/XenApp), DV (Desktop Virtualisation) etc means or when to use them, head over to this post here The Licensing piece Now onto the interesting subject of licensing. There is a great FAQ from Microsoft that can answer many questions.  It can be found here . There are some simple tenants here that if followed will avoid pain: No matter how the desktop is delivered, physical or virtual, a number of Microsoft server and CAL licenses will be required.  VDI, RHSD or physical desktops do not change these requirements.  Normal licensing questions and discussions...
  • Need to buy a copy of Windows 7 or Office 2007 for someone in education - get an educational discount

    HI, I've been asked this many times, so I thought I would blog on it.  Microsoft offers great discounts for people in education (beyond those who work in education).  The best options are: For university students: http://www.microsoft.com/student/discounts/theultimatesteal-uk/default.aspx - – Office £38.95, Windows 7 Pro - £30 For any age group in education - Office 2007 for around £39- £52 depending on which edition (Standard to Enterprise) and Windows 7 upgrades for £40-56 depending on the edition http://www.software4students.co.uk/ http://www.rm.com/shops/thebasement/Range.aspx?nguid=480909c5-102c-4700-8739-f3feedbb6a6d http://www.rm.com/shops/thebasement/Range.aspx?nguid=59137e0c-6185-4d95-a360-a680d60636ea     There are obviously some conditions you have to meet to qualify to use these products and each site has information about them.  If you are in full time education or a parent of someone who is then you likely qualify.  To learn more about Microsoft and education in the UK, have a look at http://www.microsoft.com/uk/education/default.aspx .  You will notice that both the organisations I linked above are linked on the Microsoft page, but I have experience with the above two.   Thanks David Technorati Tags: Windows 7 , Office 2007 , Education , Student discount , Microsoft
  • What are the legal options for Licensing Windows 7 or Windows Vista? Or how to avoid mis-licensing

    I’m often told that Microsoft licensing is complex, but what I actually find are that this either translates to “I have too many choices - ahhhh!” or “I can’t license in the way I want to” or “I can’t find the information I want to”. Option 1 is always going to happen – the more choice, the more complexity in making the right choice. Option 2 is often “I don’t want to buy lose licenses, why do I have to..” and Option 3 is poor communications on the part of Microsoft. To help with the Option 3 situation there is a new guide on the Microsoft Partner portal that explains one of the areas I’m often asked about – i.e. Windows client licensing. It is really simple. Here are the rules in summary (non-legally binding and please read the guide for full details): A PC has to licensed with a Full retail product (FPP, bought from a shop) or supplied with an OEM license (the OEM option can’t be used after the PC has been bought and supplied to the end user) Volume Licenses for Windows client is only available as an upgrade to the FPP / OEM eligible license Volume Licenses upgrade only apply to business versions, not Home editions, unless you are a qualifed academic customer and there is more information in the guide. I don’t think that is complex. To “Get Legal” there are various options too. For more details, have a look at this “Windows Licensing Fact Sheet” - download from here . Thanks David Technorati Tags: Windows 7 , Windows Client , Windows , Licensing , Microsoft , Partners , MSPP , Microsoft Partner Network
  • Microsoft catches up with illegal software seller

    I’ve been asked in the past why Microsoft didn’t take more action against rogue software resellers. We do and you will have seen adverts about this recently, but I saw this and thought I would share. My advice – if the price looks too good to be true, it is. Microsoft catches up with ITAC owner Barry Omesuh receives custodial sentence and could be forced to sell properties to pay £2.5m fine for parallel importing Written by Kayleigh Bateman CRN , 27 Jan 2009 Software giant Microsoft has claimed a "major victory" in its long-running piracy battle with now defunct Manchester based sub-distributor ITAC. ITAC managing director Barry Omesuh was given a total of seven custodial sentences at the Royal Courts of Justice in London, ranging between one and nine months and to be served concurrently, and also ordered to pay £2.5m in damages. Included in the court order was a grant to Microsoft enabling it to sell Omesuh's properties in order to pay his debts. Despite ITAC having to pay Microsoft £1m in damages in February 2006 for parallel importing and unlawful dealing of Microsoft software, the firm continued to trade with an unauthorised distributor in the Middle East. Omesuh was found in contempt of court for breaching court orders issued in March 2008. Graham Arthur, anti-piracy attorney at Microsoft UK said: “This case against ITAC and Mr Omesuh shows that Microsoft takes a zero tolerance approach to anyone who undermines the level playing field for our retailer community. “We are working hard, sometimes Microsoft catches up with ITAC owner - 27 Jan 2009 - CRN ttfn David Technorati Tags: Microsoft , Licensing , Anti-piracy
  • Small Business Server 2008 downgrade rights questions and answers

    Last night I was at the Merseyside Partner group in Liverpool and once question that got asked again (and was in TPV and London too) was around downgrade rights from SBS 2008 to SBS 2003, so I dug for about 30 seconds and found these items on the Licensing FAQ site Microsoft Windows Small Business Server 2008 : Q: What are downgrade rights? How do I exercise them? A: Downgrade rights, in general, means that you can use an earlier version of the software acquired. For Windows Small Business Server, this means you are allowed to install and use Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2 Premium Edition instead of Windows Small Business Server 2008 Premium Edition, which is what you purchased. You can also install and use Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2 Standard Edition instead of Windows Small Business Server 2008 Standard Edition. At any time, you can install the software you purchased and cease to use the earlier version. If you obtained your server with Windows Small Business Server preinstalled from a partner or OEM, in order to exercise your downgrade rights you must already have the earlier versions of Windows Small Business Server media available. If you purchased Open Licensing, Volume Licensing, Software Assurance, or the full retail product of Windows Small Business Server 2008, contact Microsoft fulfillment services in your region. Q: Are my Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2 CALs valid to use to access my Windows Small Business Server 2008 network? A: No. You must have the CAL version that matches the version of the server software you are running. That is, if you have a Windows Small Business Server 2008 domain, you must have Windows Small Business Server 2008 CALs. Note: If you choose to run an earlier version of the server software (by way of using downgrade rights), you would still be in compliance with your license by acquiring Windows Small Business Server 2008 CALs. Q: How do I obtain CALs for earlier versions of Windows Small Business Server when they are discontinued? A: You will need to purchase...
  • How to sell Hosted CRM (CRM Online) in the UK and still retain your customers and a good profit – by working with Increase CRM

    [updated with contact details at 16:38] I have a partners or two that are looking to implement CRM internally and through the conversations about how they could do this came to know of the guys at Increase CRM. The good folks at Increase CRM seem to understand how SBSC partners think because the offerings they have for referral and resellers seem to be quite good to me. if you want the brochure on the subject, let me know, but here is the important piece for partners: What is the Referral Program? Partners in the Referral Program refer their customers to Increase CRM and we offer hosted Microsoft Dynamics CRM and support services directly to the customer. Typically, the partner will provide implementation consulting services and may choose to provide first and second line support. Referral Partner Commissions The Referral Program guarantees partners commissions from any customers referred to Increase CRM: Subscribers Commission 5-10 100% of the first month’s subscription fees 11-50 200% of the first month’s subscription fees 51+ 300% of the first month’s subscription fees What is the Reseller Program? Partners in the Reseller Program resell Increase CRM’s hosted services under their own brand and Increase CRM does not contract with their partner’s customer. Typically, the partner will provide all the implementation consulting, user support, system administration and billing services to the customer Reseller Wholesale Fees The Reseller Program guarantees partners a low wholesale fee for hosted Microsoft Dynamics CRM that partners can mark-up and offer to their customers, as described in the table below: No. of Users Reseller Partner User Subscription Fee 1 to 250 £30 per user per month 250+ Available on request Comparison of the Partner Programs The table below compares the two partner programs: Responsibility Referral Partner Program Reseller Partner Program Marketing Partner Partner Sales Partner Partner Setup Increase CRM Increase CRM Implementation Partner Partner First line support Increase CRM or partner Partner...
  • Where will your customers be looking for solutions – will they stick to on premise, or will they move towards a S+S or SaaS solution not from you?

    I know the table above is really, really simple, but I wanted to start the ball rolling – I have been thinking about this for ages!! Let me explain the diagram. The horizontal axis signifies how much of a solution is hosted. An example of this might be Office Live or Hotmail, where almost all of the solution is hosted. We then have the “on premise” or on-site IT going vertically. For most people, this is solutions like SBS 2003. A typical S+S solution might be MS CRM Online which has online components, but also enables you to go off-web and use Outlook or one of the mobile clients when on the road. While many thought on-line would be the next best thing even the king of on-line, Google, have recently admitted that it would not always be the answer in the posting they made on April 1st. Steve Clayton did the leg work and checked this was not form of April fool too!! Even the NY Times is talking about it, which to me says it really is going mainstream - http://www.nytimes.com/idg/IDG_002570DE00740E180025742400363509.html . Ok, so that is the picture out the way, now lets talk about the question. Which question you ask… well, this one: Will any of your customers be running in the “S+S or hosted” marketplace in 5+ years time? Now while that is a good question, I expect most of you will say … some, definitely not all, but some. How many customers can you afford to lose to a S+S provider? Now this leads to an even bigger question …. What will you have done to ensure they are still your customers, as opposed to someone who is skilled in S+S? Personally I find this question much more concerning as many people can’t articulate any plans they have to capture these customers!! So what do I suggest … If you are a services partner I recommend you start to look at SaaS services like Office Live that are slowly moving towards S+S or S+S services like CRM online and start to plan how you could add value to them and make money in the future. If you are an ISV, then now is the time to start to look at services like the Sync Framework...
  • ISVs can learn about Microsoft’s strategy and products and how they fit into selling solutions – come to the events in TVP and Manchester on the 10th and 24th April

    One of the biggest criticisms of Microsoft by our ISV partners is that they don’t know where we are going… well this even should help solve that – see you there perhaps: Introduction 09.30 - 10.00 Registration & coffee 10.00 – 10.15 Welcome & Introduction Deliver Innovative Solutions 10.15 – 10.45 Microsoft strategy direction 10.45 – 11.30 Microsoft technology roadmap 11.30 – 11.50 Coffee break Increase your opportunities 11.50 – 12.15 Marketing & sales initiatives Close more sales 12.15 – 12.30 Services & licensing for sales acceleration Support your Customers 12.30 – 12.45 Technical support resources 12.45 – 13.00 Wrap up with Q&A 13.00 – 14.00 Lunch & networking 10 th Apr, Chicago 1, TVP Registration url: http://msevents.microsoft.com/CUI/EventDetail.aspx?EventID=1032373283&Culture=en-GB 24 th Apr, The Lowry, Manchester Registration url: http://msevents.microsoft.com/CUI/EventDetail.aspx?EventID=1032373286&Culture=en-GB Enjoy the event! ttfn David Technorati Tags: ISV , Microsoft , Strategy , Roadmap , event
  • Action Pack Subscribers get Full Windows Vista DVDs - not upgrades and they also get a copy of Ultimate too, plus a stack of materials to sell the product

    Full, not Upgrade Vista product Well anyone who says we don't listen is just talking rubbish!! What am I talking about - I'm talking about the Action Pack and Windows. We moved to non OEM media and boy did it cause a stink, but that has changed again. According to Important changes for Action Pack Subscribers regarding Windows Vista while you are still required to have a legal license for a machine (FPP or OEM) you can now apply full copies (i.e. do a bare metal install) without having to do a double install. There are also a stack of sales materials coming too (I've copied some of the points from the link below): Partner feedback has enabled Microsoft to make the Windows Vista operating system even better. Now you can reap the benefits. Sell more with hardware, software and services built around Windows Vista with Service Pack 1 (SP1). And learn how we're making it easier than ever for you to learn, use and sell Windows Vista. Based on partner feedback, we've taken action to improve the partner experience in support of Windows Vista: Mid-March 2008 delivery of Microsoft Windows Vista Business with SP1 in a special Action Pack shipment to partners worldwide. To make it easier for you to deploy the final release of Windows Vista SP1 for internal use, all subscribers will receive full code*. Not currently an Action Pack subscriber? Find out how to subscribe . New subscribers will receive Windows Vista with SP1 as part of the April 2008 Welcome Kit. One licence for Windows Vista Ultimate with SP1 (full code*) for internal use, so you can discuss this product's benefits and features with customers who need a single PC to fulfil their work, travel and entertainment needs. This software will be delivered in the regular Action Pack quarterly update (April 2008) for current subscribers and for new Action Pack subscribers starting in April 2008. A comprehensive set of readiness resources to arm you to sell and support Windows Vista SP1 solutions for your small- or medium-size-business customers as momentum...
  • Microsoft Online Services - beta in US, international .. not for a while yet, but you get to see where Microsoft is going!

    What is it? I know Vlad is not going to like this, but even he will admit that this has been on the cards for a while. Software plus services is coming to town in a bigger and bigger way. At the moment there is a limited beta in the US and (just like Google), it has the beta tag on it . So what have we seen today, well we have seen Microsoft stand up and be counted in it's commitment to the software-plus-services strategy. We have seen existing "on premise" solutions of Exchange and SharePoint be offered as a S+S (software-plus-services) alternative for those customers who don't wish to run these themselves. There is no "must switch" or "dropping" of the existing, very successful products, just more options for people. As a customer you would consider whether you get better value running these in-house yourself, or with a partner delivering them for you in-house, or completely outsources to another partner or Microsoft. As a partner you have to consider how you deliver in all worlds. While today you probably add value to "on premise" solutions you need to understand how and if you add value should your customer opt for the new services. If you want to deliver theses types of services yourself, look at SPLA agreements and the information at The Microsoft Service Provider License Agreement (SPLA) . If you want to build solutions on top of those announced today then look at http://www.microsoft.com/online/partner/learn-more.mspx . Either way you can learn more at http://www.microsoft.com/online/default.mspx . Other's reactions As you can imagine, there have been a few prople covering this, from bloggers to journalists. Below are just some of the items I've seen so far: Press Microsoft to Expand Microsoft Online Services for Businesses of All Sizes (press release) http://www.eweek.com/c/a/Enterprise-Apps/Microsoft-Expands-its-Online-Services/ Microsoft moves further into the cloud.. cautiously http://www.ebizq.net/blogs/saasweek/2008/03/microsoft_expands_ondemand_ser...
  • Open License Media can now be purchased and downloaded online

    Open Licence media now available online Open Licence customers in the UK can now buy media online directly from Microsoft, which will potentially reduce the amount of time and money you currently spend on fulfilling Open Licence media orders. Download the Open Media Re-engineering Guide for Partners and a customer-facing presentation . eOpen allows you to: Create and retain personalized views of Open License purchase history information Review your license agreement and product use rights Update your license contact information online View Open License purchases made in more than 180 countries Find and download software available under your license agreements Access your Volume License Product Key to install your software ttfn David Technorati Tags: eOpen , Open License , Licensing , Microsoft
  • Where Customers may obtain License Keys for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0

    I've been asked this a few times, so attached is the response I got from the nice Product peeps here in the UK. Since the easiest way to share was a picture - here it is :-) It covers the following license types: Trial MSDN/Technet MSPP MAPS VL BRL SPLA ISV Royalty Again, see http://www.uksmbgirl.co.uk/blog/archives/320 for more information on MS CRM and http://uksbsguy.com/blogs/doverton/archive/2008/01/17/microsoft-dynamics-crm-4-0-ready-for-download.aspx for download information. ttfn David Technorati Tags: Licensing , MS CRM , CRM
  • New Small Business Oriented blog - Microsoft Police (entry on licensing) and Vista bloody Vista (who's fault is it when things don't work on Vista)

    Susanne Dansey pointed this out to me - Dave is doing some excellent blogging! I like both these entries from January. One discussed the rights and wrongs of what to do with a customer who will not license legally. My personal opinion here is that if they won't pay a software company, how long until they will avoid paying the services company for a quality job. Dave's second post is dealing with someone who has been told that Vista is poor and blames anything that does not work under Vista on Microsoft. I'm not saying that Microsoft is never to blame, but it is nice to see posts like this coming out of the woodwork. Microsoft Police There has been a lot of chatter in the newsgroups recently about Microsoft licensing and what to do if you think the legality of clients software is suspect. Here is my opinion. Funny that, it being my blog Simple, get them to become legitimate (or legal) or walk away. Let’s clarify this. Why I said legitimate or legal is because these can be two separate things. Why? well frankly, just because Microsoft and it’s lawyers say something should be the case, it doesn’t mean that it is the law. <snipped - click link above to read more> Vista, bloody Vista! I was having a friendly discussion in the pub at the weekend and was introduced to a college lecturer. He spoke quite fluently about IT in his college even though he admitted he is not very technically minded. Then it came…Why Vista he asked, it knackers things, so his techie people tell him? Windows 98 which he has at home is fine GRRRR! Except, it isn’t fine. His PC was falling apart at the seams, things just weren’t working. The more I questioned the more it became like a broken record. Why had Microsoft not left things alone. The fact that his quite clearly 18million year old dial-up modem wasn’t working was obviously Microsofts fault. They only update things in order to screw money out of poor victims like him. (This did stay friendly I hasten to add and many more pints were...
  • Quick licensing question and answer - the 5 licenses (CALs) that ship with SBS 2003 in the box, are they per user or per device?

    I have seen this question asked several time so thought I would share this one on the blog: http://www.microsoft.com/WindowsServer2003/sbs/techinfo/overview/licensingfaq.mspx Q. How do I know which mode I have selected? A. For the first 5 CALs that come with the server, you should complete the CAL license document. There is a field for writing in whether you would like to choose per user or per device CALs. For CAL add-on packs there are separate SKUs for per user and per device. ttfn David Technorati Tags: SBS 2003 , Licensing , CALs , Per User , Per Device
  • Dissent in the Open Source world between GPL 2 & GPL 3 - Linus Torvalds will be sticking with GPL 2

    I personally don't mind which license type someone chooses to deliver their product with, but I think it should never be used as a shotgun against the developers, contributors or organisations that have been using / developing the software to force them into agreements that were unrecognised prior to that use. GPL 3 was hijacked (in my very personal opinion) by a small group to change the meaning of "free" and change the ethos of the GPL. Today I read that I am not the only person who feels that way. In the interview at InfoWorld, Linus Torvalds, the inventor of Linux explains why he believes GPL 2 is for him. After all, just because someone releases an alternative version of a license, you don't have to use it!! Linux creator Linus Torvalds, in an interview being made public by the Linux Foundation Tuesday, stressed that version 2 of the GPL (GNU General Public License) still makes the most sense for the Linux kernel over the newer GPL version 3. GPL 3, which was released last year by the Free Software Foundation (FSF), reflects the FSF''s goals while GPL 2 closely matches what Torvalds thinks a license should do, Torvalds said. "I want to pick the license that makes the most sense for what I want to do. And at this point in time, Version 2 matches what I think we want to do much, much better than Version 3," said Torvalds, who is now a fellow at the foundation. He was interviewed in late-October by Linux Foundation Executive Director Jim Zemlin. Among GPL 3 highlights are protections against patent infringement lawsuits and provisions for license compatibility. Torvalds acknowledged he had spoken out against GPL 3 before it was released. He had opposed digital rights management provisions in early-2006, calling them burdensome . Linus Torvalds still sticking with GPL 2 | InfoWorld | News | 2008-01-07 | By Paul Krill ttfn David Technorati Tags: GPL , Linux , Linus Torvalds , Open Source
  • Lots of Partner training (new url) - Licensing 101, Sales 101, Office PerformancePoint, Office Business Applications (OBA), Enterprise Search, SharePoint Services and Server 2007, Office Communications Server 2007, Infrastructure Optimisation (IO) ...

    [updated with a working URL] Partner Licensing 101 – The next one is being held on the 4 th December 2007 This session will equip sales people with a top level knowledge that will enable them to talk to new and existing customers about Microsoft licensing. Target Audience: This session is aimed primarily at sales people from all Partner types, although it is appropriate for all Partner roles whether in Sales, Purchasing or Technical. The course is ideal for new starters looking for a good introduction to Microsoft licensing or just a great as a refresher for those who have taken a break from Microsoft licensing. This session is suitable for people who present technology solutions to customers from a non-technical perspective and need to demonstrate the correct way for customers to purchase. Click Here to register For further information please contact Carla Symonds. Partner Sales 101 - The next one is being held on the 5 th December 2007 - Aim: This session will equip sales people with the knowledge and skills that will enable them to talk to new and existing customers about the business benefits of Microsoft technologies, and associated areas such as licensing. -Target Audience: This session is aimed at sales people. People within a partner organisation who present technology solutions to customers from a non-technical or business point of view and people who are not technical experts and do not demonstrate software, but talk about the possible solution outcome. -Objectives: For the sales person to gain an understanding of all key Microsoft technologies, with additional focus on infrastructure, and the Portals and Business Intelligence solutions, Windows Vista, Office 2007,the Microsoft Dynamics products and the fundamentals of Microsoft licensing. Click Here to register for the 5 th December 2007. For further information please contact Carla Symonds. Microsoft Office PerformancePoint Server 2007 Technical training. This four day instructor-led workshop provides students with the knowledge and skills to architect...
  • Want Office 2007 with a 50% discount? You have until Christmas to upgrade and get a 50% discount with Open Value Subscription

    Again, browsing the small business blog and I thought this was very interesting: Why wait? Upgrade now to 2007 Office and save 50% Until 31 December 2007 you can get a 50% discount off the 2007 Microsoft Office system when you upgrade through the Microsoft Open Value subscription programme. Why do it this way? Because you get a huge discount, you can manage your payments over three years to help your cash flow, you’ll receive a single agreement for all your software licences, and get the benefit of Microsoft Software Assurance, which offers version upgrades and training and partner services. Learn more about the benefits of upgrading here . Microsoft's Small Business Blog : Why wait? Upgrade now to 2007 Office and save 50% ttfn David Technorati Tags: Office 2007 , UK , Discounts
  • Microsoft gets official open-source blessing from OSI for two of its licenses

    Many times Microsoft has been barracked for its "anti-open source" stance, which quite frankly has never existed. However, since we have always made software available under various licenses, it was decided that it was time to get these officially recognise by the people behind the dreaded GPL (that is my humour btw). Not everyone is happy about it as can be read at http://robertogaloppini.net/2007/10/18/open-source-at-microsoft-microsofts-licenses-get-approved-by-osi/ . Microsoft's desire to protect what it considers to be its intellectual property is seen as a threat by some in the open source world. However if you look at MSDN, it has, I suspect, millions of lines of code for people to borrow, use and then sell. I would call that open source of one type as well as codezone for another. In fact, as I have always understood it, Microsoft does not care how you develop or release you code, providing you do it legally! I think Microsoft gets official open-source blessing from OSI for two of its licenses covers most points Microsoft gets official open-source blessing from OSI for two of its licenses By Ryan Paul | Published: October 16, 2007 - 01:41PM CT The Open Source Initiative (OSI), the organization responsible for maintaining the definition of open source and evaluating open source licenses, has officially approved the Microsoft Community (Ms-CL) and Permissive (Ms-PL) licenses. Microsoft submitted its Shared Source licenses shortly after announcing plans to do so at the O'Reilly Open Source Convention earlier this year. OSI president Michael Tiemann responded by pointing out that three of Microsoft's five Shared Source licenses impose restrictions that are clearly inconsistent with the Open Source definition, but acknowledged that the two licenses submitted by Microsoft had merit and would be evaluated. "The decision to approve was informed by the overwhelming (though not unanimous) consensus from the open-source community that these licenses satisfied the 10 criteria of the Open Source...
  • How to save money when offering licensing to small businesses in the UK at the moment

    [updated to remove some inaccuracies about Susanne's microspeak - sorry Susanne] There are always special offers of some form or another from most companies and Microsoft is no exception (well, except in August when we are still in post financial year clean up :-)). Anyway, the UK SMB Girl aka Susanne Dansey at Westcoast has listed a couple of these.: N-3 Open Value Subscription Offer Promotion ends: 31 December 2007 Programme: OV Subscription Up-to-Date Discount (UTD) is a 50 per cent discount in OV Subscription for the first year invoice for any licence for the current (N) or previous (N-1) version of the selected Small Business or Professional Desktop platform products. For the OVS N-3 promo eligibility for receiving the 50 per cent discount is granted to N-3 versions of Office licences (back to Office 2000). Promtional SKUs are identified on the price list by the word ‘Promo’. Future proofing Microsoft Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2 Here’s a heads up to all Microsoft Partners thinking about licensing SBS 2003 so that you can save 15% on Windows SBS 2003 R2 (standard edition) for you and your clients (should you wish!). Offer: Save 15% on Windows SBS 2003 R2 Standard Edition License types: L only, L+SA Offer descriptions: Partners get an additional 15% off the regular Partner price for the Standard Edition of Windows SBS 2003 R2 (license only and license + Software Assurance). Partners are eligible to pass savings onto their customers. Offer good only when bought in a VL License (L or L+SA). SA will allow customer to upgrade to the next version of Windows SBS for free. Offer fulfillment: Partner discounts are available directly from official Microsoft distributors (such as me) Duration and timing: September 2007 through December 31, 2007 Considerations: The Windows Small Business Server CALs are not included in this discount How to hold a conversation with your customer regarding this offer AND MORE IMPORTANTLY, how to talk about SBS 2003: “Can I ask you, if you got hit by a virus, are you 100% confident...
  • IE 7 Update Drops WGA Validation Requirement

    I thought it was worth sharing this - IE 7 will be available to everyone, even those people who "have not paid" for their Windows XP OS. Many people seem to think this is purely an anti-firefox move ( http://www.websearchguide.ca/netblog/archives/006622.html ) IE 7 Update Drops WGA Validation Requirement Microsoft is making its Internet Explorer 7 browser available to all Windows XP users—even those using pirated software—and installation will no longer require that the operating system first be validated as genuine. The company said the move is about security and ecosystem safety, because if even one user in a network is not using the security enhancements provided in IE 7, that user places the entire network at risk. "Microsoft takes its commitment to help protect the entire Windows ecosystem seriously, and we're taking a step to help make consumers safer online. We feel the security enhancements to Internet Explorer 7 are significant enough that it should be available as broadly as possible, and this means making it available to all users of IE 7-compatible Windows operating systems," Steve Reynolds, program manager for Microsoft, based in Redmond, Wash., told eWEEK. "With today's Installation and Availability Update, IE 7 installation will no longer require Windows Genuine Advantage validation, and will be available to all Windows XP users," he said. <sniped> Reynolds also claimed in a blog posting that the browser, which was released in October 2006, "is well on its way to becoming the most used browser in the world, and we've seen lots of evidence that IE 7 makes it safer and easier to accomplish everyday tasks online." As evidence, he said the built-in phishing filter has protected consumers from known phishing Web sites an average of 900,000 times a week, and that it is also the "first and still the only browser with native support for extended validation SSL [Secure Sockets Layer] certificates, which help prevent online fraud." At the time...
  • SBSC members now able to sell Educational licenses once changes come in on 1st November

    Grumblings about this started on the Yahoo groups and a few people e-mailed me saying that they did not like the proposed changes coming in under the Authorised Education Reseller programme which required them to be a certified partner or above. After much time, but before the changes come in, we are delighted to be able to announce that being a SBSC partner will also qualify you. Below is the announcement that Jen has asked me to forward. Microsoft Authorised Education Reseller Announcement of UK Programme Changes Overview From November 1 2007 the renewal process for Authorised Education Resellers (AERs) will change. The main requirement, in order to sell academic FPP, Open and School Agreement licensing programmes, will be either ‘Certified’ or ‘Gold Certified’ status. However I have some great news, we have managed to ensure that SBSC partners will not be affected by this change and you do not have to be ‘Certified’ or ‘Gold Certified’ so the SBSC registered partner base can still benefit. Renewal Process From November 1 2007 the process for AER renewal will be as follows: 1. AER accesses the web site as normal: https://aer.microsoft.com/aer/default.aspx 2. Partner enters existing AER number and then their unique MSPP number 3. The web site does a background check against the MSPP web site to determine certified or gold certified status along with SBSC. 4. Partners already certified/SBSC proceed through to the next part of the site where they are required to re-do the Academic Licensing exam. 5. On successful completion their AER renewal status is confirmed. 6. If the partner does not have certified, gold certified or SBSC status they are advised that this is required and redirected to the MSPP site for further information on becoming a Certified Partner. The web site will also cater for partners that are already certified to renew early i.e. ahead of their annual renewal date. What you should do now - As an SBSC partner, no further action is needed until it is time to renew your AER status. - Further information...
  • Windows Server Virtualization Calculators - what is the best way to license Windows Server when using Virtualised environments

    I saw this and thought I would pass it on since I was talking to one of my customers about this yesterday. To get to the two calculators go to Windows Server Virtualization Calculators Windows Server Virtualization Calculators The Windows Server Virtualization Calculators provide two ways to estimate the number and cost of Windows Server Standard Edition, Enterprise Edition and Datacenter Edition licenses needed for your virtualization scenarios to help you determine the most cost-effective edition of Windows Server. Calculator 1 is designed to estimate the licenses and cost of Windows Server by editions and numerous Microsoft server products on a single, physical server. Calculator 2 is designed to estimate the licenses and cost of only Windows Server by edition for one or multiple physical servers. The calculators are pre-populated with the US dollar Open agreement Estimated Retail Prices that you can update with your organization's prices for more accurate estimates. Calculator 1 lets you interactively build virtual machines running multiple Microsoft server products to estimate the licenses and costs for Windows Server by edition (Standard, Enterprise and Datacenter) and many Microsoft server products. It starts with configuring your server based on virtualization technology, sockets and clustering requirements, and then builds the virtual machines. Calculator 2 provides two ways to estimate the number and cost of Windows Server Standard Edition, Enterprise Edition and Datacenter Edition licenses needed for your virtualization scenarios to help you determine the most cost-effective edition of Windows Server. ttfn David Technorati Tags: Virtualisation , Calculators , Licensing
  • Replying to Vijay's "Who understands Microsoft Licensing?" blog - why I think he is right and wrong

    Nothing like a blog entry on licensing to stir the people into action. Vijay posted a "small" post - Who understands Microsoft Licensing? . I'm now going to respond to both the main blog post and also some of the comments. I highly recommend you read the entry, the comments (some are included below, also for comment) and the linked blogs, especially the entry by Adam at Sorting out the complexity of Microsoft Volume Licensing as well as the others My conclusion to this question is that hardly anyone understands Microsoft Licensing. I’ve been to quite a few Microsoft Partner events and when the above question above is asked there is usually a very low number of businesses who say they understand it. This feedback is given time and time again but nothing really changes. The solution isn’t explaining it over and over again or writing Licensing Reseller Handbooks. If you can't explain something to a customer in a very succint way, then it’s just a waste of time and if as an organisation you have to employ an army of people and distributors to support this, then something is fundamentally wrong. Most people who don't understand licensing don't spend the time required to actually try - I mean, I've been on 1 course, maybe fired off 20-30 e-mails over the last 7 years, yet I answer almost every licensing question I am asked. I'm no super hero, I've just put in the same level of effort to understand licensing as I did when I moved from Unix to Windows. I decided it was a technical problem I needed to understand and solve. Sometimes it still trips me up, but so does hardware and software, so no different there. Explaining licensing to a customer should be succinct, but the details of how it works will take longer - this is no different to anything else you sell. Explaining to a customer what you do to install a SBS server, the reasons for it, how it works etc would take several books worth to do. Saying you need to buy software to facilitate these aspects of your solution should be simple...
  • Licensing with Microsoft could be easier, but the need for everyone to make money and provide options is also key

    I saw Vijay's posting on MS licensing and I have to admit I was quite amazed. 1st off it was a huge rant, it seemed to fail to understand the basics of how businesses make money and finally there was not a good suggestion on how to make it better, except to remove the ways to pay. I will do a reply to the blog later, but first I thought I would offer some insight on licensing. Why does Microsoft sell licenses Microsoft uses licensing to get paid for our products. Customers buy the license if they see the value in the products. If the customer does not see the value, they would not buy. People who say Microsoft should give it away or reduce the price seem to not understand the basic economics of supply and demand - every business, while it may have many goals, ultimately has a responsibility to the investors and this is nearly always to make money. Even when I was treasurer for a charity we needed to make money - it was probably the biggest problem we had, followed by how we deliver the services the charity delivers. What about license types Microsoft has lots of license types, why? Well, 1st off since we have an estimates 600-800 million customers, we need some standardisation, both from a simplicity point of view and from a legal and time point of view. Our contracts are discussed by many lawyers, we need them to work, to protect our intellectual property, the Microsoft staff and the 3rd parties working with Microsoft. We also need the contracts to not be in breech of any legal requirements, so, for example, we need to ensure we can not compete with desktop OEM providers or control how they operate. We also can't customise every license, so we provide flexibility and options without having to involve lawyers - this is probably where most complexity comes from. Finally we have volume discounts and benefits. OEM - installed when the system is sold and in the desktop space, Microsoft can't offer anything that competes with this because of the DOJ ruling, so it is a must have for any other licensing option...
  • Windows Client (Vista and XP) - Active X installer service, Volume Activation Tool, Diagnosing XP crashes, modifying the boot configuration parameters

    If you use volume licensing with Windows Vista then you need to be aware of the tools to manage them - it is not as simple as it used to be as you now need a management tool inside the business. VAMT answers this as does Desktop Management. Then we have some webcasts on slow networks, diagnosing crashes in Windows XP (although many of the techniques work for Vista too), backup and restore in Vista, using the ActiveX installer Service and Boot config parameters VAMT 1.0 (x86) The Volume Activation Management Tool enables IT professionals to automate and centrally manage the volume activation process using a Multiple Activation Key (MAK). VAMT v1.0 is only available as a US-EN (x86) release. Best Practices on Managing Windows Vista Desktops Get best practice guidance for managing Windows Vista desktop operations. Windows Vista Service Life-Cycle Management (WVSLM) provides concise guidance to help minimise the total cost of ownership of desktop infrastructure. Process guidance and document templates help make service management concepts from the IT Infrastructure Library and the Microsoft Operations Framework tangible and easily implementable by focusing on a single and common IT service. http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=7137227 TechNet Webcast: "The Network is Slow": Identifying the Cause of Slow Network Communications (Level 200) The Offline Crash Diagnostic tool for Windows XP is available - http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=923800 TechNet Magazine: The ActiveX Installer Service in Windows Vista How do you secure the desktop against malicious ActiveX controls without limiting application compatibility? We'll take you on a tour of the ActiveX Installer Service (AxIS) in Windows Vista that addresses this issue with a new way to manage ActiveX controls. http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=7137204 Discover How to Modify Boot Configuration Parameters In the Boot Configuration Data (BCD) Editor FAQ, find out what the BCD store is, why it was created, where it's located in the registry, how to modify it and...
  • Upgrading to Office 2007 using retail boxes - what can you upgrade from

    [updated to change blog title to something meaningful] I was asked about this today - for those people with retail copies of Office, what can they upgrade from to Office 2007. Full details on Word, Excel, Access, Publisher and the suites can be found at 2007 Microsoft Office system pricing - Products - Microsoft Office Online . To see if you have a retail box of an earlier version of Office and if it will load without you needing to upgrade onto a new machine with Vista, have a look at http://uksbsguy.com/blogs/doverton/archive/2007/05/09/buying-vista-and-then-installing-an-old-version-of-office-whatare-you-allowed-to-do.aspx 2007 Microsoft Office suites 2007 Microsoft Office Suites Estimated Retail Price /Upgrade Price Qualifying Products for Upgrade Microsoft Office Basic 2007 Available only through OEMs; price not quoted Upgrade not applicable. Microsoft Office Home and Student 2007 $149/NA Upgrade not applicable. Microsoft Office Standard 2007 $399/$239 Microsoft Works 6.0–10; Microsoft Works suite 2000–2006 or later; any 2000–2007 Microsoft Office program or suite; any Microsoft Office XP suite except Office XP Student and Teacher. Microsoft Office Small Business 2007 $449/$279 Microsoft Works 6.0–10; Microsoft Works suite 2000–2006 or later; any 2000–2007 Microsoft Office program or suite; any Microsoft Office XP suite except Office XP Student and Teacher. Microsoft Office Professional 2007 $499/$329 Microsoft Works 6.0–10; Microsoft Works suite 2000–2006 or later; any 2000-2007 Microsoft Office program or suite; any Microsoft Office XP suite except Office XP Student and Teacher. Microsoft Office Ultimate 2007 $679/$539 Microsoft Works 6.0–10; Microsoft Works suite 2000–2006 or later; any 2000-2007 Microsoft Office program or suite; any Microsoft Office XP suite except Office XP Student and Teacher. Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2007 Available only through volume licensing; price not quoted Upgrade not applicable. Microsoft Office Enterprise 2007 Available only through volume licensing; price not quoted...
  • Licensing Reseller Handbook are now available for UK partners

    This little tool is something worth downloading and reading to help answer some of those licensing queries and to learn more about selling Volume Licensing and the rules and benefits of other licensing types. Get it from here It walk through: Basic licence types How to become a reseller How to sell these licence's (key messaging and operational info) Product Specific licensing ‘need to knows’ ttfn David Technorati Tags: Licensing , Tools
  • Worldwide Partner Conference - WPC in Denver - what I know so far - Dynamics CRM Live

    Microsoft Announces Product Offerings and Customer Early Access Program for Microsoft Dynamics Live CRM - This could be huge - $44 per calendar month per user for Professional CRM and $59 for Enterprise edition (Professional Edition plus offline support)!!! Then, when you thought it was not so good for partners, look at the models: With the new Live service, partners in the Microsoft Dynamics CRM ecosystem will have new opportunities to deliver value to their customers and to drive revenue for their businesses by developing and deploying solutions across the three deployment options — Live, on-premise and partner-hosted models . For revenue in the new Live model, partners will be compensated on a recurring basis, not a one-time basis; each year they will receive 10 percent of the yearly Software as a Service (SaaS) subscription revenue for each customer for whom they are the partner of record. During 2008, a special incentive will allow partners to receive 15 percent of the SaaS subscription revenue for that year Steve from BMS noted the following: Microsoft WPC 2007 notes at BMS Blog: SBS Consulting in the UK Dynamics CRM Live launched Live Demo by Brad Wilson - General Manager for CRM Ability to download and completely remodel the CRM environment via partner provided XML templates Direct competitor for salesforce.com etc. Early adopter program Only available through partners Focus on making revenue from consultation ttfn David Technorati Tags: WPC , Partner Conference , Dynamics , CRM , CRM Live , Live
  • SBS 2003 R2 Premium Edition, Downgrade options, including SQL 2005 to SQL 2000 - for a limited time only

    In a recent announcement we now offer the ability to downgrade the Premium technologies in R2. More information can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2003/sbs/downgrade/default.mspx with a FAQ at http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2003/sbs/evaluation/faq/bizsolutions.mspx . Please note that this is a time limited capability due to the End of standard support of SQL 2000. If you have licensed a copy of Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2 Premium Edition (which includes Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Workgroup Edition), but your line of business applications are not yet available on the Microsoft SQL Server 2005 platform, you may be able to request downgrade rights to SBS 2003 SP1 Premium (which includes Microsoft SQL Server 2000 Standard Edition the version of Microsoft SQL Server that shipped with Small Business Server 2003 and SP1), and use the downgraded SQL Server in your SBS 2003 R2 environment. You may exercise this downgrade through the channel in which you licensed your original version of Windows Small Business Server R2 Premium Edition. This downgrade offer is available only through April 30, 2008 . The downgrade from SBS 2003 R2 Premium (which includes Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Workgroup Edition) to SBS 2003 SP1 Premium (which includes Microsoft SQL Server 2000 Standard Edition) should be for new data installs only. This is not recommended as a migration path for data already ported to Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Workgroup Edition. Product Support Update How to Downgrade Downgrading for OEM Customers Downgrading for Volume Licensing Customers Downgrading for Retail or Systems Builder Channel Customers Product Support Update When you use Microsoft SQL Server 2000 Standard Edition (included in SBS 2003 SP1 Premium) in your SBS 2003 R2 Premium Edition environment, the product support policies for the downgraded version of SQL Server will follow the Microsoft SQL Server 2000 lifecycle. Mainstream support for Microsoft SQL Server 2000 will retire on April 8, 2008. After this time, Microsoft SQL...
  • What is going on in the world of Virtualisation with Virtual Server and Virtual PC on licensing, Vista, x64 and more

    There are a couple of recent announcements with regard to the current range of products that I thought I would cover off. One is about licensing and has been written up by Matt McSpirit at http://blogs.technet.com/mattmcspirit/archive/2007/06/22/microsoft-virtualisation-licensing-client-and-server.aspx and covers how many licenses you get when. The other is Virtual Server SP1: Virtual Server 2005 R2 SP1 Is Now Available Virtual Server 2005 R2 SP1 is the server virtualization technology engineered for the Windows Server operating system to increase hardware utilization and enable IT staff to rapidly configure and deploy new servers. Register to download the free software and you will receive relevant resources that are strategically assembled to address the challenges you will face as you discover, assess, and deploy the software. http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=7042993 The What is New page shows (plus more on the page) - note the x64 support for more memory. http://www.microsoft.com/technet/virtualserver/evaluation/vsoverview.mspx What's New in This Release Virtual Server 2005 R2 SP1 includes the following new capabilities: Virtual Server 2005 R2 SP1 Enterprise Edition can be installed on servers with up to 32 physical processors. • Virtual Server host clustering. Support for host-to-host connectivity lets you cluster all virtual machines running on a host. • iSCSI support. iSCSI clustering enables guest-to-guest connectivity across physical machines. • x64 support. Virtual Server runs natively within a 64-bit Windows host operating system, providing increased performance and memory headroom. • Enhanced PXE booting. PXE boot support has been added to the virtual machine network adapter. This means that when the appropriate network infrastructure is in place, you can perform a network installation of a guest operating system in the same way as physical servers. • Other improvements. Virtual Server now includes improved hyperthreading, support for F6 Disk (SCSI driver), Active Directory integration using service...
  • Technet Answers on licensing Office 2007 for Terminal Server and Disaster Recovery licensing

    I was reading the latest Technet newsletter and saw this and thought I would pass on these two items: 2. How do I license Microsoft Office so my users can access it over Terminal Service? Microsoft has produced a Word document (126Kb) that discusses the options available to customers who would like to configure access to Office in this way. 3. How does Microsoft license its products for use in a disaster recovery situation? View the guide to "Cold" Server Back-Up for Disaster Recovery" . ttfn David Technorati Tags: Licensing , DR , Disaster Recovery , Office 2007 , Terminal Services
  • What are the Top 5 Licensing Questions we get asked in the partner team

    Numbers 1, 2 and 3 are listed below. To be nice to the Partner team I have not included 4 & 5, so you will have to go to the link to get them. Having said that, don't forget that we have a team of people who can answer your licensing questions - not treating you as end users, but treating you as partners. Top 5 Licensing Questions I've had a chat Lisa Michigan from our licensing team, and I asked her what the top five licensing questions were asked to the Ask Partner hotline last month. Here are the questions with the answers! How useful... What downgrade rights does Windows Vista Business have? We have received this question countless times. We are able to answer this question quickly and accurately based on the OEM Vista Business Microsoft Software Licence Terms which state OEM Vista Business can be downgraded to Windows XP Professional, Windows XP Professional 64-Bit Edition and Windows XP Tablet-PC Edition. What media and key can I use when downgrading? Many partners and customers are aware that their MSLT/EULA/PUR permits them to downgrade, however we receive many questions about how customers can take advantage of these downgrade rights. We advise the customer that if their MSLT/EULA/PUR permits downgrade rights then they need to source the media and key themselves. They can use any legitimate Microsoft media that they own including FPP, OEM or Volume Licensing media and will need to use the appropriate key for the appropriate media. How are disaster recovery sites licensed? We receive many calls from partners and customers asking whether they need to acquire additional licences to create a disaster recovery site. We advise customers that all Microsoft software being used at a disaster recovery site needs to be licensed appropriately. The only exception to this rule is through the “Cold Back-Up Server for Disaster Recovery” Software Assurance benefit. Partner Perspectives : Top 5 Licensing Questions ttfn David Technorati Tags: Licensing , Partners , Microsoft
  • UK SMB Girl » First Victory for Microsoft against hard-loading reseller

    Technorati Tags: Licensing , Anti-Piracy You asked for us to get tougher and now we are telling you more about it - here is one of the cases. “Microsoft’s tactics to use the small claims courts to penalise resellers found selling counterfeit product has resulted in its first victory, with further cases waiting to be resolved. Michala Alexander, head of anti-piracy at Microsoft, said it had settled out of court for £1,800 with its first small claims target, Bargain Computers of Stoke-on-Trent, but had another eight to ten cases in the pipeline. UK SMB Girl » First Victory for Microsoft against hard-loading reseller ttfn David
  • If you want Windows XP Pro on a new machine, buy Windows Vista (Business or Ultimate) and then downgrade

    I’m not sure how many people are aware of this, but if you buy a Windows Vista Business or Ultimate then you can use a Windows XP CD (which you have legal access to) to load Windows XP onto that machine. When you need the product key / or need to activate, this will potentially fail, but a quick call to the activation centre with your Vista product key should give you all the details you need. Then when you are ready to put Vista onto that machine, you can do without the cost of buying it anew. Alternatively you can buy Windows XP today and should you ever want to load Vista, you can give more money to a shop to get a copy again. For further information go to http://oem.microsoft.com/script/sites/public/licensing.htm More information can be found in this one page document OEM Downgrade from Vista to Windows XP ttfn David Please Note the following (in legalese) Windows Vista Downgrade Rights Clarification Per the EULA and OEM DTOS Agreement, the end user customer is responsible for supplying media for the OEM or customer to create the downgrade product image on the customer system. Neither Microsoft, the OEMs, nor the system builders are responsible for supplying this media. VL customers already have the necessary media. For non-VL customers, the easiest way to obtain this media is to buy a single FPP copy of Windows XP Pro or use an existing FPP copy of Windows XP Pro if they already own one. That media can then be used to downgrade Windows Vista Business or Windows Vista Ultimate machines to Windows XP Pro. If the customer uses a product key for Windows XP Pro that they’ve previously activated, that machine will likely fail activation. If the downgraded machine fails activation the customer will be prompted to call the product activation call center to request a key that will enable them to pass activation. The customer should mention that they’re exercising their downgrade rights to the customer service representative in the activation call center.
  • Do you sell Microsoft product and went something to make it easier to understand our licensing and products? Something that will help you up-sell and cross-sell to your customers? If so, then the Gear Up book is for you

    In a recent mail it announced: The Microsoft Sales Toolkit is your source for driving sales. It is the licensing and sales 'product handbook' that will help you generate up-sell and cross-sell opportunities, giving you and your Partners information on the full portfolio of Microsoft products and services. You can find information on what the product is, how to sell it, relevant SKU numbers and FAQs. The toolkit is produced twice a year and is available as a hardcopy, to keep on your desk, or to download as a pdf, to take out with you to meet customers. Visit www.microsoft.com/uk/gearup for more details or to download the pdf version. Go get it, it might just answer one or two of those questions you have!! ttfn David Technorati tags: Gear Up , licensing , sales , Microsoft
  • Action Pack abuse / misuse and customers who are registered as a partner and should not be - what can be done about it?

    Over the past months I have had people say to me something like: "I have a customer who wants to use the Action Pack, what can I tell them as to why it is wrong" "I know someone who is abusing the action pack by selling it to customers" "I think someone is listed locally as a partner and should not be" I think this customer does not qualify or how do I tell people what is required to use the Action Pack So here is how we can help. To qualifty for the action pack you must (from https://partner.microsoft.com/UK/program/managemembership/actionpack/mapslicensing ) Who can subscribe to the Microsoft Action Pack? The Microsoft Action Pack Subscription is available exclusively to consultants, value-added resellers, value-added providers, system integrators, developers, system builders, hosts and service providers who are enroled as Microsoft Partner Programme Registered Members and who distribute or influence their customers’ acquisition of Microsoft software and Microsoft-based solutions. To become a partner, you need to look at the guide - https://partner.microsoft.com/UK/program/managemembership/actionpack/40005166 Who is Eligible to Join the Microsoft Partner Programme? The Microsoft Partner Programme is designed only for businesses whose primary function is to sell, service, support, or build solutions on the Microsoft platform or to provide solutions based on Microsoft products and technologies to independent third-party customers. Examples of qualifying businesses are: consulting services providers, independent software vendors (ISVs), independent hardware vendors, large account resellers, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), support providers, system integrators, system builders, training providers, value-added resellers and value-added providers who sell more than 75 per cent of their products and services to customers outside their own company. Examples of non-qualifying entities are non-profit organisations, academic institutions, students, government offices and businesses whose...
  • Buying Vista and then installing an old version of Office - what are you allowed to do

    I have already discussed on this blog what is and is not support for Office on Vista (any version from 2000 on) here . However there is always the question of licensing what is actually allowed and what would be piracy. I am going to try to make it very simple here. · If you have the Home and Student (was the Student and Teacher) Edition then this can be installed on 3 computers in the same household · If you have a previous “Full Packaged Product” – the pretty box you bought at a retailers – version of the product then this can be removed from one computer and installed on a new computer. It can only be installed on one computer at any time · If your software is provided as part of a volume license agreement then you can install on a new computer or other computers, but if you change the number of computers that it is installed on you may have to pay more for the extra usage. · If you have neither of these then you have an OEM copy – this is provided and supported by the people who supplied your computer and part of the license provision is that it belongs to that computer only and can not be transferred anywhere else. I hope that makes it clear. As always, leave a comment for any questions. Ttfn David
  • SBS 2003 R2 & CALsare now on the Academic Price list so you can sell SBS to schools again :-)

    Hi guys, I've just picked this up from one of our internats web chats and thought I would share it. SBS will be on the Academic Price List and available in all languages (SBS Standard, Premium + 5 CAL packs) through Volume Licensing as of April 1st. For FPP, retailers will be able to get the product as of May 4th. This is great news and I have had it confirmed that it is on Wescoasts price list, plus some other distributors. ttfn David
  • Channel Expo Show presentations - Windows Vista, Office 2007 and Windows Server (SBS, Naked, Home Server and Longhorn) sales slides

    If you visited the Channel Expo show this year then you probably saw one or two Microsoft presentations on desktop and server solutions. James Akrigg and Matt McSpirit provided the desktop entertainment while I covered off what servers we have out there and what is coming in the near future. We promised the slides and here they are: Desktop (Windows Vista and Office 2007)- Office 2007 PowerPoint Desktop (Windows Vista and Office 2007)- PDF Server (SBS, Windows Server 2003 R2, Longhorn and Home Server) - Office 2007 PowerPoint Server (SBS, Windows Server 2003 R2, Longhorn and Home Server) - PDF James has an amazing blog (Out of Office) at http://blogs.technet.com/outofoffice Matt touches many aspects of desktop technology including that for small business at http://blogs.technet.com/mattmcspirit Have a look at the blogs and enjoy the presentations. ttfn David Technorati tags: Channel Expo , Vista , Office 2007 , SBS 2003 , Nakes Servers , Home Server , Longhorn
  • Help to make the Office 2007 document type a standard (Open XML) - click the link

    I love standards - they make life easier. TCP is one, ODF is one, SNA is one, ASCII and EBDIC are. Even PDF is one. It just makes life easier. In this connected world standards are a good thing and sometimes more than one standard is very good. Microsoft has offered the Open XML (Office 2007 document format) as a standard too. We can have it as a standard in a short time frame or a long time frame. I want you to sign the petition to help it happen in the short time frame. Even Novell are supporting this as they see it as just making their customers lives easier. Go here and sign the petition to help move things forward in the short time frame. If you want to see how developers could use the standard have a look at http://openxmldeveloper.org/posts.aspx . You might wonder why I am asking you to do this. Well I've read the text at the microsoft.com site on Open XML and I like the idea of this being a public standard that people can write to without having to pay for the right to do so and the knowledge that writing to the standard will give them good interoperability. My 1st three years after University was writing document converters, including those for Microsoft Office and Open XML would have made my life MUCH MUCH easier. To aid interoperability, XML-based file formats can unlock data in documents and help integrate front- and back-office processes. Recognising these benefits, Microsoft has implemented XML-based formats in successive releases of Office. Both public and private sector customers have expressed their preference for making Open XML an open standard so that they have broad rights to use, without cost, any Microsoft patents necessary to implement all or part of the format. Responding to this, Microsoft and others called for the standardisation of Open XML. On 7 Dec 2006 Ecma International, a highly respected standardisation body, approved the adoption of Open XML as an international open standard. The strengths of Ecma Open XML are clear: Ecma Open XML was developed through the collaborative efforts...
  • Top 5 Tips to start working with Open Licensing ( in the UK )

    I saw this and thought I would share Check out the Licensing Wheel in the EVO GA Kit which can be ordered on the Partner Portal. The wheel matches the type and size of customer with suitable licensing packages and is a great starting point for a discussion with your client. Have a look at Gear Up – a book available online or in print that acts as a definitive sales guide to all Microsoft’s licensing products. Gear Up gives you the background on the full range of licensing options and the advantages they will offer different customers Use the Licensing Configurator – once you have ascertained your client’s exact requirements the Licensing Configurator will give you a robust and accurate picture of the right programme for them Talk to Ask Partner at 0870 60 70 700. The team will answer any questions and help you get started with selling Open If you’d like to offer your customer Open through someone else, talk to either a Large Account Reseller or one of Microsoft’s specialist Partners with the Gold Licensing competency. Ask Partner will put you in touch. All these tools and information resources are available on https://partner.microsoft.com/UK/licensing/ or can be ordered by calling Ask Partner. To read other Partner’s stories on how they grew their key accounts with Open visit our website https://partner.microsoft.com/UK/licensing/40023302 ttfn David
  • Microsoft Desktop Optimisation Pack including Softgrid and Sys Internals - 1/2 day technical overview

    The half day overview for partners is scheduled for 28 th March in Reading at Microsoft Thames Valley Park 44SE002 - Microsoft Desktop Optimisation Pack: why it’s more than just Softgrid 44SE002 - Microsoft Desktop Optimisation Pack: why it’s more than just Softgrid Summary This event provides the background to Microsoft Desktop Optimisation Pack, its components, licencing, positioning, strategy and future. It includes a drilldown on the Softgrid application virtualisation technology. Recommended Audience This event is aimed primarily at technical sales staff within partner organisations delivering Microsoft desktop and infrastructur Details Register Detailed Agenda Background and context: overview and positioning of Core Infrastructure Optimisation (IO) Software Assurance (SA): range of benefits eg Desktop Deployment Planning Service Microsoft Desktop Optimisation Pack: positioning within SA Licencing Elements available outside SA MDOP (Microsoft Desktop Optimisation Pack) Technical overview of all 4 components Example scenarios Relationship to other tools Future strategy Softgrid Applications: The Root of Complexity Approaches to Cure Complexity SoftGrid’s Mission: Software as a Service What It Does (and Doesn't do) Microsoft SoftGrid Benefits SoftGrid For Windows Desktops SoftGrid For Terminal Services SoftGrid Virtual Application Servers SoftGrid Sequencer SoftGrid Management Web Service SoftGrid Data Store Application Virtualization Explained On-Demand Streaming of Virtual Apps Putting it all together SMS 2003 Operating modes Considerations / Thoughts SoftGrid RoadMap ttfn David Technorati tags: MDOP , Microsoft Desktop Optimisation Pack , Training , SA , Software Assurance

(c)David Overton 2006-13