Archive for July, 2010

New Hotmail features

July 24th, 2010

  • edit office documents in your inbox
  • share 10GB of photos in an email message f
  • iltering and find features
  • link to phone and video messages
  • enahced security features

Project Server and SharePoint 2010 first Cumulative update

July 24th, 2010

Cumulative June Update

- Description of the SharePoint Foundation 2010 hotfix package

 - Description of the Project Server 2010 hotfix package June 29, 2010

- Description of the SharePoint Server 2010 hotfix package  June 29, 2010

Dubai population grows 2% first quarter 2010

July 22nd, 2010

The population of Dubai at the end of the first quarter of 2010 reached 1,803,000. Males comprise 77 percent (1.4 million) of the population

Dubai Road deaths down 25% Jan-July

July 22nd, 2010

Dubai has witnessed a remarkable 25 per cent decline in road fatalities in the first half of 2010 – however Sheik Zayed Road and Emirates Raad are still seeing fatalities on average of around 1 / fortnight


July 22nd, 2010

All grandparents residing in or visiting Dubai are requested to register themselves for the “Grandparents Day” to be celebrated on Monday 26 July 2010, the feast day of St Anne and St Joachim.

Vico Office – BIM – what’s it all about?

July 21st, 2010

Immerse yourself in these You Tube videos: -

 multiple demos.

Laser net print output management and more

July 20th, 2010

In your business you deliver a multitude of invoices, purchase orders and statements. Consider how much this costs.  According to the Gartner Group and others it is likely to be in the range of AED 12-34 per document: and many companies issue over a million a year. In additon to printing costs, stationery, labour and  postage. Further costs come from filing, and recovery of data plus the costs of storage cabinets, office space. The real cost is often greater due delays in orders, payments or decisions. 

 LaserNet gives you the tools to dramatically reduce these costs.

Better still it  ensures  that customers receive documentation in their preferred format and house style, whether that be paper, fax, e-mail or XML.

It’s easy and you don’t  need to make changes to your ERP-system.  LaserNet is an intelligent, document routing system that integrates with all windows based IT applications, to  provide an  enterprise class, document delivery solution.

 LaserNet includes powerful document management and workflow processes. You save time and money.  Your staff concentrate on building your business rather than a paper shuffle.

LaserNet lets you design in familiar office tools and uses simple ‘drag & drop’ configuration and requires no changes to your host systems - fast, easy and inexpensive implementation and trouble free operation.

If you use SAP, or Microsoft Dynamics Ax, then there are integrated wizards to make life easier.

CTO Thomas Bak Olesen, Invita Kitchens:
“Our LaserNet solution is one of the most profitable IT-investments we have ever made”

CTO Morten Hald Nielsen, Ravenholm A/S:
“We estimated that 20% of our customers would accept to receive invoices by email, which would give a Return on Investment in less than a year. We were right.”
System Coordinator Kim J. Nissen, Nomeco:
“In addition to minimising data entry, LaserNet also automatically converts the suppliers’ product codes to Nomeco’s own coding system.
A major time and error saver!”

CRM 5.0

July 19th, 2010

Some details regarding CRM 5.0 for some time.

New Accelerators :

  • Non-Profit Solution for Dynamics CRM Online – now available!
  • Portal Accelerators – Q2 2010
    • new versions of eService, Event Management and Partner Relationship Management (PRM) accelerators
    • Customer Care Accelerator (CCA) – Q2 2010 to  provide consistent customer service- combe data elements from mainframes, databases or Web sitesand  display in a single user interface.

Integrated agent desktop, Desktop automation, Computer telephony integration (CTI), and Activity reporting.

New integration tools with other Dynamics software.

  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM Adapter for Microsoft Dynamics GP – May 2010
    • A highly reliable, bi-directional and fault tolerant business document integration between Dynamics CRM 4.0 (Update Rollup 5 and above) and Dynamics GP 10 (Service Pack 4 and above) and the new GP 2010.
  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM Adapter for Microsoft Dynamics AX6 – 2011
  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM Adapter for Microsoft Dynamics NAV2009 – 2011

And for developers .

  • SDK (May 2010) – Advanced Developer Extensions for Microsoft Dynamics CRM is a set of new tools included in the Microsoft Dynamics CRM SDK that simplifies and accelerates the development of internet-enabled applications that interact with Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0.
  • A full list of key features is outlined in the Statement of Direction document.

 CRM 5.0, is scheduled to release “the second half of 2010″, most likely near the end of the year.

User Productivity and Collaboration

    • Increase accessibility through the Microsoft Office “ribbon” interface
    • Drive user adoption through personalization
    • Enrich business insight through improved business intelligence
    • Balanced workload management for more efficient use of resources
  • CRM Capabilities: core CRM investments
    • Contact and Account Management
    • Team-Based Collaboration
    • Call Center and Unified Communications Support
    • Territory Management
    • Performance Management
    • Other areas:
      • Further improving the flexibility of sales opportunity management to incorporate team selling models.
      • Extending the outbound marketing capabilities to allow richer communications via email, including document attachments.
      • Further simplifying and extending marketing list management capabilities.
      • Providing users the ability to schedule future recurring activities.


July 19th, 2010

Microsoft Research research into retweeting on Twitter

A random sample of 203,371 retweets from 107,116users.

  • 18% of retweets contain a hashtag
  • 52% of retweets contain a URL
  • 11% of retweets contain an encapsulated retweet (RT @user1 RT @user2 …message..)
  • 9% of retweets contain an @reply that refers to the person retweeting the post Compared to the random sample of tweets, hashtag usage and linking are overrepresented in retweets

Microsoft licence changes

July 19th, 2010

 Microsoft has made some licence policy changes to address  growing trends such as mobility and virtualization.

So before you enter a new a three-year Enterprise Agreement or a flexible, pay-as-you-go Select Agreement, it’s important to understand how those changes impact your business. Many of the changes are favourable to customers. However, there are some changes that may have serious implications for IT departments, from price increases and for Office to changes to the rules on remote access and virtualized desktops to future retirement of the Select License program. The grace period for renewal of SA (Software Assurance) takes away any tie mfr renegotiation and is likely to alienate a lot of customers and partners

Forrester draws attention to five of these licensing and pricing changes that IT buyers should focus on.

Office Pro Plus – Five Percent Price Increase 1 May 2010

New volume licensing customers pay five percent more for Office 2010 than they did for Office 2007, starting May 1, 2010. Companies with SA licenses get the upgrade for free.

Office 2010 is major step forward and the benefit of  Software Assurance is upgrade rights, so are you expecting to upgrade? Do you use the training and customer support ?  Buyers renewing an EA (Enterprise Agreement) or adding SA to an Office 2010 consider when the next version is due . what it might contain and whether or when you might want to move to it.

New Licensing Options for Virtualized, Mobile Office Deployments

Microsoft’s traditional definition of Office license is “per device” . Does this make sense with  smartphones, thin clients and virtualization in the corporate network So Microsoft has clarified its SA policies. From 1 July 1, 2010, users of a PC with an Office license has rights to Office 2010 Web Apps from PCs or external devices, if  companies host the Office Web Apps on either SharePoint Server 2010 or SharePoint Foundation Server 2010.

Additionally, users get Office RUR (Roaming Use Rights) with an active SA license. This allows users to access Office through any streaming or virtualization technology on devices outside the company, such as your home PC, airport kiosk, or smartphone.

Consider using a licensed PC as a server for solutions like GoToMyPC, pcAnywhere, or Office Web Apps.

 Microsoft Shakes Up Windows Virtualization Licensing Policies

With Microsoft’s VECD (Virtual Enterprise Centralized Desktop), users with SA on their Windows client OS will no longer have to buy a separate subscription to access Windows in a VDI (virtual desktop infrastructure) environment. Windows virtual desktop access rights now will be a standard SA benefit.

For thin clients and PCs without SA on Windows, Microsoft offers a new license called Windows VDA (Virtual Desktop Access), which will cost $100 per year per device.

Also, much like with Office licenses, the primary users of PCs with SA on Windows will have device roaming rights that let them access a hosted desktop outside of the company walls.

Inlcude desktop virtualization plans into your Windows licensing strategy.

Microsoft Will Stop Selling Select Agreements after July 1, 2011

Microsoft will stop signing new Select Licenses on July 1, 2011, and will replace those with the enhanced Select Plus program. Select License customers can migrate to Select Plus during this time and maintain their current price level.

Microsoft’s Select programs are part of its Volume Licensing that allow customers to buy in volume and “pay as they go” for only the software they use. Businesses should establish a Select Plus contract so it is there if they need it. Companies with expiring Select contracts are under time pressure at the negotiation table; they have no way to buy additional licenses within a volume licensing program after the existing contract ends.

Software Assurance No Longer Has a 30-day Grace Period

Microsoft removed the concept of a  grace period at the end of a Select License Agreement or an EA (Enterprise Agreement), during which customers could renew SA without any penalties. When SA expires, a customer’s only option is to re-buy that license again with SA. Prepare for this Change – don’t blame your partner you know when your licence is due to expire.

With the removal of the grace period, adjust the timing of any negotiation and plan a timeline that will deliver an approved deal before SA expires.  The likelihood is that Microsoft sales reps will show some leniency when the buyer convinces them that they will get a ‘no deal’ answer if they enforce an impractical, needless deadline but with order processing moving on line the bureaucracy of circumventing the rules will be a challenge.

 (this also applies to Dynamics products)

Social media – what not to say?

July 17th, 2010

 Last week, CNN Mideast Affairs editor Octavia Nasr lost her post after tweeting her respect for a militant cleric.

Last month, veteran reporter Helen Thomas was pressured to retire after she made a comment at Jewish American Heritage Month celebration that was later posted online by the rabbi’s son that many considered to be anti-Semitic.

Flight attendants have lost their jobs because of inappropriate pictures posted on their personal Facebook accounts.

 As an employer, its not pleasant to read something negative one of your employees or competitors post about your company. For most small  private companies they are the collection of individuals who work for it . So  adverse comemtns form employees are really  adverse marketing that affects the individual directly as well as his coworkers. If its that important then just maybe it should be raised internally with those coworkers which includes the management. Companies are only as good or bad as the employees that work for it so posts of public whinges are often self damning and  such outbursts on social media tend to reflect more on the employee than the company.  Would  another employer want to employ someone that behaves that way, what sort of references can be expected? Employers and recruting agencies also use social media to research candidates and do bakcground checks – what opinion will they form?.

I don’t know the answer. Do I  think a flight attendant should be fired for posting sexy pictures on her Facebook account? Not really and its not part of their work unless they are posing in company unfiorms- its up to the  flight attendants to uphold their own moral reputation, but it may still reflect on how others perceive their judgement, and maturity and suitability for a more senior post, or customer interaction. What if that person was a schoolteacher? Why should a schooteacher  be judged by dfferent standards?

Consider: if  you post personal information, or opinions in a public forum then can you have any expectation of privacy? Social sites are public by their very nature; that’s the ‘social part.

Posting online is a slippery slope for the employed and those hoping to be employed. In this blog I try to post  online what I woud be happy to say in person in a company board meeting. As social media continues to grow exponemtially, and  messages can be read by or forwarded  to multiple contacts globally instantly,  this is something everyone has to  consider.

Proverbs 13:3 Those who are careful about what they say protect their lives, but whoever speaks without thinking will be ruined. (New Century Version)

Windows 2000 ends its extended support period.

July 17th, 2010

 This means that security hotfixes is no longer vailable for the operating system for either the server or the professional (workstation-class) editions. Windows 2000,  was the first release of Active Directory and Group Policy some the best products for Microsoft Windows.

Some options to consider

  • Firewall: Set up a private network for the legacy operating system and secure the perimeter with a network firewall.
  • Convert it to a virtual machine: If the system is  a virtual machine, it will be easier to preserve and isolate.
  • Turn it off: If the system is a virtual machine, have it powered on only when needed – useh VMware vSphere or Hyper-V permissions models, and the application owners can deal with the extra step.
  • Windows 2000 Custom Support services from Microsoft. There is an offering to have hotfixes on a case-by-case basis. This is available for large Microsoft accounts and will be  expensive

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011

July 17th, 2010

Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference July 12, 2010,

Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 – formerly codenamed “CRM5″ – will be publicly available as a beta release in September 2010 

  • Inline data visualizations
  • Real-time dashboards
  • Flexible goal management
  • Guided process dialogs
  • Oracle Gold Partner

    July 14th, 2010

    Because of its success with Oracle database sales, I am pleased to note that Synergy is now a Gold Partner with Oracle, as well as Microsoft,  Infor, and A Group

    Win an Apple iPad – A Guide to Dynamic Forecasting – Prophix

    July 13th, 2010
     A Free Editorial Webcast Presented by Business Finance
    Made Possible by PROPHIX Software. · July 22, 2010· 2:00 PM EST

    Win an Apple iPad – One Live Webinar Attendee will be chosen to win a 16gb Wi-Fi Apple iPad.  *No purchase necessary. Webinar registration and live attendance required. This giveaway is void where prohibited by law. The winner will be chosen at random by a member of the Business Finance editorial staff. Taxes if applicable are the responsibility of the winner. 3G and wi-fi service costs are the responsibility of the winner.  Business Finance is not liable for anything relating to this giveaway. Apple and iPad are not affiliated with this giveaway.  

    In today’s volatile environment, if you’re looking at a budget that was created two to three months ago, much less nine months ago, it’s useless. From this Webcast, you will learn how to rethink the design and operation of your forecasting process to make it more dynamic and responsive to your organizational needs. 

    Hear Business Finance editor in chief Jack Sweeney interview budgeting guru Steve Player about the evolutionary path that is now empowering organizations by transforming  forecasting and planning.  Learn from detailed case studies how organizations were able to replace the time-consuming processes of traditional budgeting with dynamic forecasting & planning.

    In addition, this Webcast will show you how best to automate and sustain a dynamic planning process, as well as mitigate risk in transforming your forecasting processes.

    Other topics include:

    • Improving forecast accuracy
    • Succeeding with Rolling Forecasts
    • Using scenario planning to forecast impact of uncontrollable events
    • How to preserve accountability, without set targets.
        Steve Player
    Program Director
    Beyond Budgeting Round Table in North America
        Jack Sweeney
    Editor in Chief
    Business Finance
    To sign up for this event, Thursday, July 22, 2010
    Time: 2:00 p.m. EST
    Duration: One hour
    Place: Your Desk
    Requirements: Web connection, computer audio capabilities