Archive for the ‘Technology’ category

Patch tuesday 5 Sep 2014

September 5th, 2014

Internet Explorer needs another critical patch. If left unpatched, the browser is subject to attacks that execute malicious code on victim machines, so getting the updates to patch it is important.

In addition to the threat posed by the vulnerabilities that the patches correct, these critical browser updates will be challenging for IT organizations. Installing the updates requires system restarts and the browser in all its versions is widely distributed among organizations.

Vulnerable versions include IE 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, and 11 running on desktop Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 as well as Windows Server 2003, 2008 and 2012.

The bulletin about the Internet Explorer problems is likely to include a roll-up of fixes for any number of vulnerabilities found over the past month

Microsoft Migration Accelerator for Azure

September 5th, 2014

Microsoft recently acquired InMage, which has a hybrid cloud product to help migrate computing assets into, or back from, or in between, either public or private cloud infrastructures with ease,

It helps you also to replicate with a real-time sync with premise assets to leverage the cloud for: dev, test, analytics, and more; and helpesyou to recover and back up your physical and virtual assets ,whether on premise, or in the public/private cloud

Microsoft announced yesterday :

Spawned from the technology of Microsoft’s InMage acquisition announced July 11, the MA is designed to seamlessly migrate physical, VMware, AWS and Hyper-V workloads into Azure. It automates all aspects of migration including discovery of source workloads, remote agent installation, network adaptation and endpoint configuration. With MA, transitions into Azure can occur in mere minutes!

MA changes the cloud migration paradigm by offering:
Heterogeneity: With MA you can migrate workloads running on a broad range of platforms such as VMware, Microsoft Hyper-V, Amazon Web Services and/or Physical servers within your environment. MA can support workloads running on Windows Server 2008 R2 sp1, Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server 2012 R2 operating systems.
Simple, Automated Migration: The MA portal allows you to automatically discover your enterprise workloads, remotely from the cloud. With a few clicks, you can configure end-to-end migration scenarios. MA allows you to test your workload in the cloud without impacting the existing on-premise production workload, offering the ability to validate workload functionality before a cutover is performed.
Migrate Multi-tier Applications: MA boasts the unique ability to migrate a multi-tier production system with application level consistency, orchestrated across tiers. This ensures multi-tier applications run the same in Azure, as they ran at the source. Application startup order is even honored, without the need for any manual configuration.
Continuous Replication, Least Cutover Time: MA for Azure provides full-system replication including the OS and application data. This continuous replication and in-memory change tracking reduces the cutover time to mere minutes, minimizing impact to production workloads.

MA offers an unprecedented level of automation to provide seamless migrations of heterogeneous assets, into Azure.

Key Highlights:
Automated asset discovery and migration – MA portal orchestrates the discovery and migration of workloads from a single pane of glass.
Migration cutovers to Azure in minutes – continuous replication and in-memory change tracking significantly reduce cutover time.
Self-provisioned target Azure VM’s — Target VMs are dormant during synchronization saving compute cost and are then automatically provisioned during cutover.
Heterogeneous platform support – support for broad range of environments and platforms.
Continuous replication – lightweight agents on the source servers continuously replicate all changes to target ensuring near zero downtime during migrations.
Multi-tier application support – migrate your multi-tier production system with application level consistency orchestrated across tiers.
Target VM Network and Endpoint Adaptation – support for automated network adaptation and endpoint reconfiguration.
Integrated compression, encryption and bandwidth management.

Faster web with new html element for images

September 3rd, 2014

The Web will get much faster very soon.

A current problem is images. – the size of the average page in the top 1,000 sites on the Web is 1.7MB. and Images account for almost 1MB of that 1.7MB.

With a fast fiber connection, that no problem but on a mobile network, that huge image uses up limited bandwidth. When you’re using a mobile device is you still get images intended for pc monitors loaded . It’s a waste of bandwidth delivering pixels you don’t need.

Modern Web browsers speed up page load times by downloading images before parsing the page’s body. The browser starts to download the image before it knows where that image will be in the page layout or how big it will need to be.

As of today, the Picture element will be available in Chrome and Firefox by the end of the year. It’s available now in Chrome’s dev channel and Firefox 34+ (in Firefox you’ll need to enable it in about:config). Here’s a test page showing the new Picture element in action.

Lawson of Opera first suggested that a new html element might be in order. The breakthrough for Picture came from Opera’s Simon Pieters and Google’s Tab Atkins. They made a simple, suggestion—make Picture a wrapper for img. That way there are not two separate elements for images on the Web (which is confusing), but there would still be a new way to control which image the browser displays.

After evaluating the various rules, the browser picks the best image based on its own criteria. This is anice feature because the browser’s criteria can include your settings. Future browsers might offer an option to stop high-res images from loading over 3G, regardless of any Picture element on the page . Once the browser knows which image is the best choice, it loads and displays that image in a n img element. Prefetching still works and there’s no performance penalty. When the browser doesn’t understand picture, it falls back to whatever is in the img tag.

So Picture wraps an img tag. If the browser is too old to know what to make of a element, then it loads the fallback img tag. All the accessibility benefits remain since the alt attribute is still on the img element.

Opera, also based on Blink, will support Picture in the near future. Apple appears to be adding support to Safari through the backport to WebKit, though it wasn’t finished in time for the upcoming Safari 8. Microsoft has likewise been supportive and is considering Picture for the next release of IE.

Azure cuts prices from 1 Nov 2014

August 30th, 2014

In April, Microsoft introduces some new service tiers and phased out some.

This week, announced some price reductions and improved service level availability. The changes are just ahead of general availability of the new tiers in September. Microsoft is cutting prices on the Azure SQL Premium and Standard tiers by 50 percent from previously published pricing.

Basic tier pricing will remain the same as previously published.

Microsoft also is moving Azure SQL Database to hourly billing for the new service tiers, according to a blog post last week about the new changes.

Microsoft will add a new s0 (s-zero) performance level in the Standard service tier as a lower-cost entry point for Standard. The 99.95 percent availability in its service level agreements (SLAs) for the new tiers, will be increased to providing 99.99 percent availability, Microsoft officials said.

The current Web and Business service tiers will be retired in April 2015.

Fo more information on prices see

Dubai Construction – BIM mandate – Synergy Software Solutions, Dubai, has the answer

August 2nd, 2014

We introduced BIM to the region back in 2008.

Dubai Municipality has mandated the use of BIM for architectural and MEP works for :
According to this important document (number 196 – dated Nov 18, 2013), Dubai’s Municipality formally informs all design and construction companies operating in Dubai that it has decided to mandate/dictate BIM for architectural and MEP works for
(a) all buildings 40 stories or higher;
(b) facilities/buildings that are 300,000 sqft or larger;
(c) all hospitals, universities and other similarly specialized buildings; and
(d) all buildings that are being delivered by/through an international party.

The announcement also states that this decision to mandate BIM is based on the (proven) ability of BIM tools and workflows in improving construction quality, enabling collaboration between project participants across project phases, lowering costs, reducing time, unifying specifications/standards, facilitating QTO and cost planning.

It also stated that this decision is preliminary – stage 1 to come into force on January 1, 2014. Finally, the document states that consultants – architects, engineers and similar,( no mention of contractors) – are legally responsible to fulfil this dictate.

Dubai’s BIM mandate comes in the wake of increasing global adoption of BIM.
- – The EU made BIM a mandate in January 2014.
- In Singapore, BIM is mandatory for all public housing projects.
- IN U.K. government contracts will mandate BIM from 2016
- It has had widespread adoption in Scandinavia and the USA for many years.

Once International Construction companies adopt BIM in one country they will soon rollout to other countries and that factor will also force an increase adoption here by all contractors, architects etc.

Construction is one of the few industries where productivity has decreased almost year on year for the last 40 years. More congested cities. tighter planning and Health and Safety legislation may be contributing factors but the low adoption of enterprise IT relative to other industries is the major factor. This reflects an industry that often thinks on a project basis, and this has a high labour turnover which discourages long term investments and training. This e with longer term vision are reaping the rewards of BIM.

Design out mistakes before they reach site, integrate plans across the supply chain, and the savings are obvious yet BIM offers much more. Collaboration from the outset between all of the design disciplines – the client, contractor, specialists and suppliers – is fundamental to ensuring the best design, construction and operating solution and the BIM models and BIM workflows help to achieved this “right first time”.

According to the 2012 McGraw Hill North America BIM SmartMarket Report, the percentage of companies using BIM jumped from 17 per cent in 2007 to 49 per cent in 2009 and to 71 per cent in North America 2012 with 74 per cent of contractors now using BIM compared to 70 per cent of architects.

BIM solutions were used in iconic projects such as Shanghai Tower in China, Freedom Tower in New York. However BIM has also been successful in recent regional projects of various scale and size such as::
- the King Abdullah Sports City complex in Jeddah,
- Masdar’s headquarters at Masdar City,
- Al-Mafraq hospital in Abu Dhabi,
- the Midfield Terminal Building – Abu Dhabi International Airport (MTB-ADIA),
- the museum projects at Sadiyaat island

In all projects BIM adoption ensures that projects are completed more quickly, more accurately, more safely and at less cost than comparable non-BIM projects. A recent study from McGraw-Hill Construction found that BIM adoption is growing dramatically by contractors and that more investment is planned.

Two UK academics, Prof Nashwan Dawood and Dr Mohamad Kassem from Teesside University, have been awarded a grant of $940,000 to lead a research project aimed at developing “a whole life cycle information flow approach enabled by BIM protocols and technologies” for Qatar’s construction industry. The two UK academics will work with Qatar University and HOCHTIEF ViCon to deliver the project. The project research team has been collecting data and interviewing engineers and project managers on some of the major projects underway for the 2022 FIFA World Cup. The project will seek to identify the root-causes of poor information flows and the approach undertaken will be industry and client-led. There is an ambition to develop Qatar as the centre of excellence in the Gulf for advances in the management of information in construction projects.

A recent NBS BIM survey, reveals that 95% of construction professionals are now aware of BIM and usage among those professionals will jump from 54% to 93% within three years. However a recent ITP BIM breakfast meeting few attendees were willing to raise their hands to indicate that they had a full understanding of BIM.

Contractors, who particularly benefit from BIM, are beginning to insist that their consultants — including architects — must also work with BIM. This trend will accelerate due to government pressure to reduce costs, and energy consumption and to improve health and safety, and on-time completion and competitive pressure will force smaller contractors to adopt BIM. Many of those contractors will similarly insist that their supply chains also use BIM.

There is the feeling in Dubai that after years of fairly lax regulation on project management – which had undoubtedly resulted in a large amount of substandard projects, not to mention delays and budget overspends – the use of BIM can only serve to benefit Dubai’s construction industry

Understandably many are put off BIM adoption because of the anticipated costs, or perceived complex technology issues and the culture change needed to maximise the benefits. So ask about our AEC Construction solution that is an end to end solution that also encompasses estimation tendering and operations as well as BIM and at an affordable price with fast deployment.

The Solution

1. The construction industry needs integrated system support for challenging processes from project bidding to completion and client billing with dynamic project cost and time analytics to support a timely, high quality, decision making process.
2. To take control of the project management and stabilize the business you need controls and accountability around the clock.
3. AEC Engineering Apps, integrated with: Auto CAD, STAAD Pro and Microsoft Project facilitates the full construction lifecycle: plan, estimate, budget, and schedule, design and execute your projects with works accounting.
4. Rapidly make world class Bar Bending Schedules and designs.
Don’t take our word for it try a LIVE Trial on any of our 11 modules at
5. AEC’s proven applications help you to undertake the key construction business functions: drawings, planning, budgeting, procurement, inventory, equipment management and operations.

Find out for yourself – call Yudhi – 0097143365589

Microsoft in the cloud – more free space, lower costs

July 11th, 2014

Last week Microsoft more than doubled the amount of free cloud storage users get with its OneDrive service (formerly known as SkyDrive). The 15GB offer puts Microsoft on par with Google Drive, and OneDrive is notably cheaper than Dropbox and Box — for now. (Box offers 10GB of free storage while Dropbox offers 2GB.)

It also cut prices for additional space in the cloud by about 70 percent.

In a related move the company also unveiled a new offer for subscribers to its Office 365 service: 1TB of free storage.

These updates will take effect in the next month and current subscribers will automatically be moved to the lower prices, according to Microsoft

Microsoft also made it easier to use the cloud service by integrating OneDrive with its latest Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 OS releases. Having a smooth interface between OneDrive and the Office 365 service is another and more significant advantage.

Azure – new back up solution – Azure Site Recovery (ASR)

June 28th, 2014

No backup data center?

Microsoft Azure Site Recovery will keep applications and services running on the cloud should disaster strike.

Microsoft cloud-based disaster recovery is coming with Azure Site Recovery (ASR)).

Abhishek Hemrajani, a Microsoft program manager,in the company’s official blog announced new capabilities that enable disaster recovery (DR) in the cloud. Enterprise and small and midsized businesses (SMBs) “can now protect, replicate, and failover Virtual Machines directly to Microsoft Azure.”

In short, a cloud-based DR site that can span multiple geographies.

ASR, formerly Hyper-V Recovery Manager, provides a guaranteed safety net, whether customers “enable Disaster Recovery across On-Premise Enterprise Private Clouds or directly to Azure,” said Hemrajani.
He added that “virtualized workloads will be recovered accurately, consistently, and with minimal downtime.”

Businesses no longer need to view cloud-based DR with suspicion, according to Microsoft’s Brad Anderson, corporate vice president of Windows Server and System Center. “If you’re an enterprise that has viewed previous cloud-based DR solutions with skepticism—brace yourselves for the details of this announcement,” he said in a statement. – See more at:

Health data on the internet – good or bad?

June 28th, 2014

The new “Google Fit” health data tracking service will compete with Apple’s recently announced HealthKit data collection services, according to a report.

Google will debut its plans for a new health data tracking service called “Google Fit” at the upcoming Google I/O developers conference as part of its recent push into high-tech wearables. – Google has also been working recently on other device-related health projects, such as experiments unveiled in January with special contact lenses that are equipped with miniaturized sensors that can analyze the tears in the eyes of diabetes patients to determine when their blood sugar levels need to be adjusted. – See more at:

It seems perverse coincidence to read on the same day that possibly 1.3 million records were stolen when hackers broke into Montana’s health care system presumably with the intent of identity theft. , Montana has taken the steps necessary to shore up security. Government officials have confirmed that the personal information of 1.3 million people has been hacked. State of Montana officials are now notifying potential victims that hackers broke into a Department of Public Health and Human Services (DPHHS) computer server

Microsoft acquires Capptain – Response Marketing tool

June 16th, 2014

A response marketing solution provider with tools to help mobile and web apps analyze user behavior, and respond by pushing targeted messages, announcements, information, or offers. Capptain is an SaaS platform for app developers, providing analytics, real-time monitoring and CRM/push capabilities.

Since Nadella took over, Microsoft has: unveiled the Surface Pro 3, announced a big partnership with (adding to previous deals with Oracle and SAP), shown off Skype Translator, and now made a big move in the cloud by acquiring Paris-based startup Capptain. The acquisition brings together two areas that Microsoft’s Nadella has promised to focus on — mobility and cloud

The Capptain solution allows Marketers and CRMers of Mobile and Web apps to engage their users and enter a constant customer interaction by Analyzing in details their users behavior, finely Segment their users based on how they interact with the application, and respond by Pushing very targeted messages, announcements, information or offers. Capptain’s helps organizations to keep track of which mobile apps are used for how long and where the users are located. It provides granular information on how people use apps, what they are viewing and sharing and how much time they spend in an online shopping cart.

It’s still early days for Capptain at Microsoft, and the first priority will be business is integration with Azure. As Microsoft’s Kahn writes, “We are hard at work integrating Capptain’s solution with the wider Microsoft Azure suite of services so that enterprises can not only build mobile apps to engage customers and employees, but also analyze and optimize that engagement.” Thus will undoubtedly lead to different pricing options.

Amazon Web Services, is still the dominant IaaS platform on the market, Microsoft has been adding features and capabilities to Azure to bring it up to speed. Azure is the go-to platform to run Microsoft’s own apps in a cloud environment, but Amazon, got the early lead and never let go. That may start to change with the Capptain acquisition, which will bring critical new features to Azure. Capptain made its mark with its mobile push notifications based on real-time analytics and user behavior, critical for companies that want to know what their customers are doing and be able to react to that on the fly through alerts, special offers, and other methods.

Its easy to speculate on the possibilities in the enterprise apps space and whether Microsoft will make a point of using Dynamics CRM and Dynamics Ax as a showcase.

Capptain currently supports just about every major mobile OS out there, including iOS, Android, Blackberry, HTML5, and, yes, Windows Phone. It also works with a number of other mobile devices, including phones, tablets, and Internet-enabled TVs.

SQL Server 2012 SP1 CU10

May 26th, 2014

Cumulative Update 10 contains all the SQL Server 2012 SP1 hotfixes which have been available since the initial release of SQL Server 2012 SP1 and is now avaiable for download from Microsoft support.

• CU#10 KB Article:
• Understanding IncrementalServicingModel for SQL Server

TCPOS in Dubai Multi-functional POS

May 21st, 2014

Are you fed up with restrictive legacy POS systems?

Are you faced with increasing demands for profitability and customer service?

Do you need to need to meet new legislative requirements, for bill printing, or for supporting chip and pin credit card payments or….?

Do you need one system to cater for multi requirements – retail outlets, fast food, fine dining, events…more?

At a retail seminar arranged by HP at Emirates Towers Synergy Software Systems and their partner software vendor;s International Manager Pamela Niggli from TCPOS presented the features of a modern multi function POS system and its many successes globally in addressing specific complex customer needs to deliver a front lien competitive edge.

The opening address from HP emphasized the rapid changes in hospitality and retail that are supported by mobile POS systems. TCPOS is a dotnet platform that is rapidly expanding globally because of its multi functional features coupled with ease of use, and ease of customization. The last impression counts: That is why the acceleration of checkout procedures is a crucial element in terms of customer relations and success in retail. Moreover, checkouts have to provide several additional functionality today, e.g. couponing, e-loading and contactless payments. Beyond that digital technologies in smartphones and touchscreens or in infrastructures will revolutionize the retail trade in future.

For us, each and every customer is unique. Whether restaurant, fast food, catering, international franchising company or retail – supermarket, fashion, jewellery, DIY.. whatever your retail business we can adapt TCPOS to meet its specific requirements. It doesn’t stop there, railways, theme parks, museums, customs even prisons are all using TCPOS

Hospitality and retail markets are rapidly changing every day. That is why we look beyond the present and anticipate future trends and challenges in order to support your growth with best solutions. With our tailor-made solutions you are well prepared to master the challenges of the future in the best and positive way.

We want to facilitate operation for you and your staff. That is why
our software solution is intuitively operable and quick to learn with the minimum training effort. Installation and configuration of the software are as easy as its operation. Thanks to its rich scope of functionalities the system can be easily adjusted to your specific needs.

The great performance of the software leads to fast processing even when many applications are being used. Special techniques such as resource pooling, data compression and Peer to Peer communication between checkouts ensure this maximum performance. An offine mode ensures no loss of business.

A la carte system administration – either local or remote central administration and control of all workstations is the versatile solution in international environments:
– Multisite
– Multilingual
– Multifunctional
– Multicurrency

(for example: dual language and dual currency receipts )
With TCPOS-Stock control your head-office and your stores can count on a system with strong performance for your store management. Besides functionality for monitoring and administration, TCPOS-Stock control provides an integrated module for inventory management.

The table service module has the functionality needed to manage table service and production centers, where products are prepared. It displays the halls and a table with a map of the restaurant.

TCPOS manages different promotions that can be automatically processed at the checkout. Discounts and deductions may be applied automatically on the articles sold in the transaction. A subsidy – Plus factor at the till provides the facility to grant to recognised customers, discounts or payment exemptions on specific articles.

Boost your customer loyalty with the finest solution for customer card management, both in the hospitality and retail market

All functionalities of TCPOS-FrontEnd are available on hand-helds with both standard Windows and Android mobile technologies, providing maximum flexibility to your business. By using a simple browser and intuitive interfaces,

-TCPOSWeb applications manages bookings and purchases, personal accounts linked to prepaid and personal cards, granting high-standards of security and precision.
Web Meal Reservation – Check on-line available menus and reserve your preferences in advance with one click.
Customer Account Manager – Customer cards supervision and balance management, wherever you are, anytime Avoid queues at the till or at automatic distributors.
Web Reporting – Display statistics and export these as PDF files, anywhere, from your PC even while on the move.

TCPOS enables the management of several brands of vending machines, operating either in off-line mode, or in on-line mode, via direct connection to a network.

Fast service in short time and high customer frequency – the time pressure in canteens and catering is enormous. Innovative technologies such as connection to modern methods of payment with loyalty cards and touchless payment are appropriate ways to assure smooth payments and accelerating the speed of guest flow. Manage small organizations up to corporate canteens or catering in the public sector as well as canteens directly or through catering organizations. Administer the system through a completely centralized management.

Hotels and restaurants Invites to the table The precise coordination of services, kitchens and bars is vital when time is scarce and many guests have to be served at the same time. With TCPOS you can always stick to your plan. By submission of orders via network TCPOS provides fast and smooth communication. Management of tables means no misunderstandings or waste of time, Just a few of the features:
Menu management – seasonal and à la carte
Orders – variable optional via handheld
Splitting of orders
Order transmission to kitchen, grill and bar
Individual customer orders
Table management and order status
Customer profiles and receipts
Variable price management
Automatic price updates
Discounts and promotions
Security due to allocation of rights
Graphical monitoring.

Experience attractions: Theme parks, trade shows, cruise lines, ski resorts, stadiums, golf clubs, multiplex cinemas and museums all
entertain visitors with a huge variety of attractions, facilities and gastronomical specialties. Visitors should enjoy their visit and have easy and comfortable access
to facilities.

Visitors to leisure areas use multiple checkout scenarios with bars, kiosks, restaurants, discos, self-service shops, outlets etc. as well as many payment locations in a network often with several hundred checkouts and a massive amount of daily transactions. Additionally, there are many ways for visitors to enter and to use the facilities such as admission tickets, credit wristbands,
rechargeable points, automatic lockers, integration to barriers and gates

TCPOS-Business Intelligence helps you to steer your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and to monitor your results.

– You no longer need a Point of Sale- today customers expect a POINT OF SERVICE

SEEING IS BELIEVING: Call 0097143365589 and ask for Madhav or Ramesh to try TCPOS for yourself.

Is the cloud right for you? Costs? Data security? What else? Which applications? Ask Synergy Software Systems

May 10th, 2014

Is my data safe in the cloud is a bit like asking whether your money is safer in the bank or under the bed. Banks also get robbed but in general are better protected than most other options.

Why use the cloud?
- is it a strategic decision to focus on the core business and to outsource an administrative function
- is there a limitation of available technical skills and local infrastructure,
- is there a need to deploy quickly and expectation of rapid scalability for which on premise deployment will be too slow
- is there a highly seasonal or variable demand for system use?
- is it economic decision to take advantage of the cloud’s economies of scale, or to smooth out cash flow, or to get more predictable IT costs ?

Such questions will help you to determine which is the best datacenter and cloud provider for your circumstances.

When choosing a data centre consider:
- the likelihood of natural disasters and weather, climate, geology
– the likelihood of man-made problems like terrorism or industrial disputes.
- the available skilled workforce, the quality of life on offer, what is the staff turnover> and certification levels?
- what are the contractual terms
- what are the latency issues for he software you run
- how geographically dispersed are your operations
- is the local bandwidth and latency the same everywhere.
- -will your cloud provider include a thin client in the pricing or might you also need to purchase Citrix or similar technology?
- does your business store large graphic or media files , will those also be in the cloud? What is the likely upload and download time?
- What about printing time and cost for large documents?
- What about BI? How fast will it run across the cloud?
- – Where will you site your Active Directory server? Will you also use ADFS?
- Does the cloud data centre provide the necessary viewers?
- the government, legislative and business culture. If governance is a critical factor for choosing a home for company data then to avoid government snooping, find a friendly country – and first define what friendly means.
- are you reluctant to use sites that are too far away. Do you want desire to visit the site in a reasonable time
- what are the accreditation and audit standards of the data centre
- can you undertake your own audits?
- what managed services are provided?
- are costs transparent? Have you budgeted for test and live systems, or for reporting databases, for back up storage? What if you want to move data between test and live – what is the time the cost, and who can do it, when?
- is your requirement for heavy processing for a few hours a day or do you need an always on transactional system.? I.e. a fixed cost or another monthly utility bill? Who is going to estimate the capacity and cost for usage based? How does that vary during implementation when you are data loading and developing, and during live operation? How does this impact costs when pay on a usage basis?
- what are the payment terms and what happens if you are late or miss a monthly payment?
- if you decide to move to another provider what assistance can you expect, how long will it take to move the data at what usage cost?
- Will you take your own back-ups to an on premise location, how will you test those the back up restores will work outside the cloud environment?
- Do the service levels, SLAs and up time statistics typically reflect 5 x 8 hour operation or 24 x 7 operation?
- and how do those factors compare to your own backyard?

Any company that distributes high volumes of content will be a large bandwidth user and will want to be located near to strong network hubs. This is why established internet exchanges in e.g. London, Amsterdam and other hubs continue to attract local business.

Dubai has long had major data centres and Synergy Software Systems offers cloud hosting as a private cloud in Dubai, as an IAAS service on Azure through Microsoft, or via level 4 international data centres in Europe and Asia, particularly for SPLA licensing of Dynamics Ax and Dynamics CRM.

Another powerful but undocumented reason why few data centres hosts migrate is that the expertise has become localised. Staff that have the experience of building data centres and running them have some of the rarest skills in IT. Recruiting these specialists is incredibly expensive and time consuming, so it’s often easier to take the data centre to the areas where they live. Dubai has a modern infrastucture and a ready supply of skilled IT engineers and we expect to see local cloud providers increase.

Major vendors solution road map are increasingly heading to the cloud. Microsoft with Azure is now taking all its apps to the cloud. Not only Dynamics CRM on line and Office 365 on line but also erp systems like Dynamics Ax. Solution development features and pricing is increasingly favouring cloud users.

If you plan to use Office 365 , with a hosted erp system in the cloud then consider whether your erp system integration with Office apps will work on line or wether you will still need on premise office licences.

The US is the leader in providing cloud computing services across the globe, dominating every segment of the market.

In the 2013 Informa Cloud World Global Insights survey, 71% of respondents (of whom only 9% were from North America) ranked the US as the leader in cloud computing usage and innovation.

In this same survey, 9 out of 10 respondents linked cloud computing to their country’s economic competitiveness.

Revelations about the extent of USA government agency surveillance of private data has exacerbated concerns about locating data centres there.

The National Security Agency (NSA), and other US law enforcement and security agencies, exploit the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) and Patriot Act to snoop on foreign electronic data is forcing foreign companies to consider their options.

A report from the US- based Information Technology and Innovation Foundation, suggests that post-PRISM concerns could cost US cloud computing firms up to $35bn in the next three years should foreign companies feel storing data in the US is too risky.

Meanwhile, a stable banking sector, strong consumer spending and a solid economic outlook, a skilled workforce, and modern infrastructure and a climate that makes cooling servers much less costly are factors, making Canada a preferred location for foreign investors seeking safety and growth, according to Cushman & Wakefield’s Data Centre Risk Index 2013.

Despite natural disasters like the US is still generally seen as a low-risk location. The ability to recover from Hurricane Sandy impressed analysts and the US still has the highest internet bandwidth capacity of all the countries measured by the International Telecoms Union (ITU) and the average cost of electricity, while not the cheapest, has stabilised and is relatively low.


The costs of Canadian labour and energy have reduced since last year, according to the World Bank. Canada’s international bandwidth is ranked 11th in the world. The construction of a new submarine broadband cable in 2014 and will bring better links to global commercial markets. Canada attracts increasing investment from operators and occupiers and its cold climate is perfect for free cooling.

In 2012 a policy document entitled Unleashing the Potential of Cloud Computing in Europe, the European Commission (EC) called for a number of steps to promote cloud computing adoption in Europe, including creating pan-European technical standards, EU-wide certification for cloud computing providers, and model contract language.

In Europe Germany, France and the UK still leader in bandwidth, latency, workforce skills and political stability, but the energy crisis is making Scandinavian countries a much more attractive proposition

UK is highly ranked thanks to its international internet bandwidth capacity and ease of doing business. The combination of recession and a recent construction boom means there are plenty of empty data centres in the UK.

Dynamics Summit May 2014 Dubai

May 5th, 2014

Technology has transformed how we engage, connect and interact with one another,” said Karim Talhouk, Microsoft Business Solutions Lead for Microsoft Gulf. “ With the new Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 R3 release, we are delivering a solution that helps businesses enable new mobile scenarios, take strategic advantage of the cloud, have deeper engagements with their customers, and overall, deliver amazing experiences for people at work and on the go.”

This update introduces a new end-to-end apps and services framework, allowing businesses to develop and distribute modern apps for specific scenarios and mobile devices that can easily and securely connect with Microsoft Dynamics AX.

Adding to the growing number of mobile apps, the update will include a new app for shop floor operators that lets them report on production jobs with touch-enabled Windows devices. Customers and partners can learn about Microsoft Dynamics AX’s apps and mobile capabilities by reading our blog postings and the introduction videos in the Dynamics Ax folder.

Gold Sponsors Synergy Software Systems had a busy day at the first Dynamics Summit in the region. This featured our presentation on Corporate Performance Management with a live demonstrations of BI4Dynamics and an overview of Management Reporter.

Extended Support for Dynamics Ax 2012 R3

Microsoft is adding two years to the mainstream support period for those who upgrade to or purchase Dynamics AX 2012 R3. Mainstream support is now scheduled to end on Oct. 11, 2018.
The extended support is intended to “provide all customers with the standard product support lifecycle transition timeline,” according to Microsoft. “This extended support timeline gives customers more flexibility to choose the best timing for their business to upgrade to the next major release.”

Dynamics Ax and Lasernet-Output management

April 27th, 2014

Group companies, have a multitude of external forms to send to trading partners, banks, authorities etc.

These forms are often bundled e.g. Packing slip and invoice go together and are distributed through a number of media including print, e-mail and EDI. .

Gardner defines output management as: “middleware that drives the output process and supports the automated creation and delivery of business process and ad hoc documents.”

Output management generates a data stream from a source system, then formats the data based on business logic, and renders the data in a predefined output format and transports this rendered output to the chosen destination.

So in simple words you can capture the print output form your erp system and format it better outside of the system e.g in Word, and then distribute it with more options e.g fax, email, xml, to archive etc.

This greatly simplifies maintenance. It greatly reduces consulting time for report formats especially when you want to change these wholesale
Its easy to update e.g. a tel number via a template word document across multiple commercial documents.
When you upgrade the report formats don’t need to change the final document just the data mapping.
Its much easier to have different versions e.g a sales order with item bar codes for on client, with item pictures another and plain for another, or to do things like add a page total or a different sort order.

Why Use 3rd Party Output Management?

Clearly, if you are a small business with limited needs for formatting you external print, you’ll probably be better off using what is already provided by your ERP or CRM system, but if you are a larger enterprise with multiple brands across multiple geographies with a large portfolio of documents, then output management is worthwhile.

If you have ever tried to design and build an invoice layout in Dynamics AX (or any other ERP system for that matter) that supports the needs of multiple subsidiaries with multiple brands in many countries, then you know what I mean. It is time-consuming, and needs testing and fine tuning and often leaves everyone slightly disappointed with the results.

Output management has a number of advantages:
◾External forms look far more professional.
◾It avoids modifying reports or precision forms in Dynamics AX.
◾It has significantly more intuitive form layout capabilities.
◾It is specifically designed for the job.
◾Less expensive in the long run.
◾Provides efficient and flexible distribution of documents to multiple destinations.
And perhaps for customers the most important feature is that they can make changes in most cases immediately without need for consultant expertise.

The most important advantage of output management is the ability to give the business what it needs, when it needs it. External forms are “the public face of the business”, and their branding in a market or region. It should not be held up by long-winded change control governance processes and spend control procedures and extended development and testing . By using output management with multiple overlays, you achieve this agility without taking significant risks.

If you have multiple systems in your solution landscape, output management can help harmonise the way forms look form those different sources and how they are produced and distributed across the business. This is often an advantage when some documents derive from the CRM system, others from ERP or Pyrollssytems and yet more from the eCommerce solution.

Is AX Up for the Job?

Microsoft made a significant improvement by introducing Print Management. With Print Management we were able to set up multiple destinations for each document type. Since then, not much has happened, actually. It would be great, if we were able to write conditional scripts, so we could base the print destination on a number of conditions e.g. Brand, Product, Customer Group etc. also, it would be ideal, if it was possible to “bundle” documents. This way you could for instance automatically print labels with the packing slip.

As with most erp systems scripting and conditional formatting in SSRS is not so easy for precision forms with lots of lines and columns.

What Solution ?
Well some good ones don’t come with a connector for Ax

We offer Lasernet from FormPipe which is very common in Scandinavia from where Ax of course originates. So they have a long history together. The solution is closely integrated with Dynamics AX i.e.its embedded within and provides Print preview capabilities. Lasernet also offers some input management capabilities, so if you are after an easy-to-implement solution without too much complexity this solution is a good bet.

Ask us to show you. 0097143365589

Microsoft Analytics Platform System

April 27th, 2014

At the Accelerate your Insights event last week, Satya Nadella introduced the new Microsoft Analytics Platform System (APS) as Microsoft’s solution for delivering “Big Data in a box.”

Unifying the data in SQL Server Parallel Data Warehouse with data in Hadoop is PolyBase, a ground breaking query technology developed by Dr. David DeWitt and his team in Microsoft’s Grey Systems Labs.