Microsoft’s Yammer team today announced a neat feature that will combine the email experience into Yammer. If you are the one who keeps switching between Yammer and email to communicate with everyone in your company, then this a great news for you. There are two new email features for Yammer, Loop in Non-Yammer Users and Forward Emails into Yammer. Loop in Non-Yammer Users Need someone to chime in on a Yammer conversation, but they don’t happen to be a Yammer user? No problem – now you can include anyone in your organization in a Yammer discussion. Simply begin typing their email address into the CC bar of any message, and that coworker will receive a notification email alerting them of the Yammer conversation. They’ll be able to respond to your message simply by replying to the email – their message will be posted back to the relevant Yammer discussion. Of ...

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Today Microsoft announced the availability of Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack (MDOP) 2013 R2 for download.  MDOP is a suite of virtualization, management and security technologies available for enterprise customers. In addition to support for Windows 8.1 and virtualization of Office 2013, today’s release includes the: Launch of Microsoft Application Virtualization (App-V) 5.0 R2 Launch of User Experience Virtualization (UE-V) 2.0 Enhancements to the Microsoft BitLocker Administration Enhancements to Monitoring tool (MBAM 2.0 SP1), including multi language support In addition to these key feature updates, MDOP 2013 R2 offers Windows 8.1 compatibility for Advanced Group Policy Management (AGPM) 4.0 SP2, Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset (DaRT) 8.1, and Microsoft BitLocker Administration and Monitoring (MBAM) 2.0 SP1, which also offers multi-language support. Microsoft also announced the availability of App-V 4.6 SP3. This release provides support for Windows 8.1 for customers as they make the transition to App-V 5.0 SP2. For additional detail on ...

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Microsoft today announced the availability of Visual Studio Online previously known as Team Foundation Service. Visual Studio Online is made up of collection of developer services, hosted in Azure to offer the best integrated end-to-end development experience for modern applications. Microsoft also announced two new Visual Studio Online services, Visual Studio Online Application Insights and Visual Studio Online “Monaco” ins addition to the existing services announced during preview. VS Online will be free for teams up to 5 users.  Visual Studio Online is also included as part of MSDN subscriptions. You get started with VS Online at http://visualstudio.com/. Visual Studio Online services, including the following: Hosted Source Control Visual Studio Online provides developers with hosted source control, using either Git or Team Foundation Version Control (TFVC).  The sources for your Visual Studio Online projects are readily available to sync to your desktop when you are logged into Visual Studio. Work Items and Agile Planning Whether ...

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Microsoft today launched Visual Studio 2013 and .NET 4.5.1 to the general public. Visual Studio 2013 allows you to build modern, cloud connected apps across Microsoft platforms ranging from Windows Azure to Windows Phone. It has support for live debugging Azure sites,  Energy Profiling, UI Responsiveness diagnostics and more. Support for live debugging Azure sites from Visual Studio means you can set a breakpoint in a running service in the cloud, and step through it directly from Visual Studio. The new Cloud Business Application project type lets you build next-generation business applications leveraging Office 365 and Azure. And features like Energy Profiling and UI Responsiveness diagnostics make it easier than ever to build 5-star applications for the Windows Store. For individual developers, Visual Studio 2013 brings great new developer productivity features.  Features like Peek Definition and CodeLens provide key information about your code right where you are working in the ...

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Along with the release of Windows 8.1 update to all Windows 8 customers, Microsoft has also released Windows 8.1 Enterprise ealuation edition for download. The Windows 8.1 Enterprise evaluation is available in 32 and 64-bit ISO versions. You can register, then download and install full-featured software for a 90-day trial. Following the evaluation period, you will need to replace the operating system on your test computer and reinstall all your programs and data. It is not possible to upgrade the evaluation to a licensed working version of Windows 8.1 Enterprise. A clean installation is required. Windows 8.1 brings following benefits to the enterprise. Best business tablets and PCs – Enhanced user experience (improved multi-tasking, multi-monitor support, and mouse and keyboard navigation), boot to desktop, new Search experience, support for latest hardware innovation (processors, InstantGo, displays, smaller tablets, NFC, biometrics) Windows apps for business – Develop, deploy, and manage new mobile ...

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Over the past few months, Microsoft has been working with Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) to develop Windows Store apps for the enterprise.  On July 1, the company announced our ISV Program, AppsForSurface, which provides devices and funding for app design intended to get key enterprise apps on Surface and Windows 8.  Microsoft has announced new participants to the program: SAP: SAP is a market leader in enterprise application software, helping companies of all sizes and industries run better.  Rustum Broacha, VP of Ecosystems & Channels with SAP said, “Our partnership through the AppsforSurface program builds on the SAP tradition of delivering innovation to our enterprise customer base, and, together with our SAP Mobile Platform and Afaria solutions, it provides a strong foundation for enterprise mobile computing.  We look forward to helping our customers fully leverage the capabilities of SAP’s apps on Windows 8 and Surface, to enable their business to ...

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A year ago, the Surface was a surprise to many and Microsoft’s first serious foray into the hardware side of the PC market.  In many ways, this was a situation Microsoft was forced into.  The OEMs had stopped innovating years ago focusing on squeezing the maximum profits and loading their “PCs” with crapware to further worsen the experience.  In the meantime Apple had been seriously innovating in the hardware space, with Google also looking into getting in the game as well. The devices and services strategy is starting to pay off, even if there was an initial $900 million blunder.  The OEMs are finally starting to put out decent devices, and most are now touchscreen, even if it is a year later than it should have been.  The Surface has set the standard of a what a PC can be.  While the distribution channels were not ready a year ago, the Surface ...

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At FAM held yesterday, Microsoft revealed some new stats regarding its revenue. While tech press is arguing whether Microsoft is a consumer company or an enterprise company, the actual number speaks for itself. Microsoft revealed that 55% of its revenue comes from the Enterprise, 19% from OEMs and 20% from consumer and services. Also they have 5 diverse business groups each contributing revenue significantly except Bing & Online. too often for you by customer segment. But if you look at our business and the makeup of the company today, well over 55 percent of the business is enterprise, and additionally, there’s some OEM business there that belongs in enterprise, but that’s how we count it, and market it. 19 percent is OEM. 20 percent is consumer and online. And a fair piece of the OEM is also consumer and online. And 6 percent is our small and midsize business. And ...

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Enterprise customers now have access to Windows 8.1 Enterprise RTM.  There will probably be no deployments as of now, but at least they can start testing the OS for their environment. This is especially important as Windows XP hits end-of-life in seven months. Beginning today, TechNet and MSDN subscribers will now have access to Windows 8.1 Enterprise RTM. This also includes access for Volume License (VL) customers with an active Software Assurance (SA) agreement, as you receive a TechNet subscription as part of SA. Preparing Your Organization to Migrate to Windows 8.1 Enterprise As we mentioned when we originally announced RTM back in late August, we talked about how we are moving forward with a rapid release cycle for Windows. If you have not started, begin your Windows 8.1 planning today. We encourage you to evaluate Windows 8.1 RTM bits to get a jump start on your deployment planning, using it ...

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Along with the information that Volume License (VL) customers, TechNet and MSDN subscribers will be able to access the Windows 8.1 Enterprise RTM, Microsoft posted the following huge table which differentiated the various Windows 8.1 editions that will be available starting October. Windows RT 8.1 is only for OEMs, so you won’t be able to install it on your own. However, you can compare other Windows 8.1 editions to choose the one that suits you. Feature name Windows RT 8.1 Windows 8.1 Edition Windows 8.1 Pro Edition Windows 8.1 Enterprise Edition User experience Apps launch other apps (new) x x x x Customize multiple tiles at once (new) x x x x Lock screen photo slide show (new) x x x x Four tile sizes (new) x x x x Microsoft account login x x x x Multiple instances of same app (new) x x x x                 Open up to four ...

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Yammer today announced the release of mobile SDKs for iOS and Windows Phone 8 devices. This open source SDK  enables developers to build mobile apps on the Yammer Platform. Mobile workforces can find answers more easily, make decisions more quickly, and in general, move much faster. Here at Yammer Engineering, we believe in keeping a quick pace. This is evident in the Yammer Platform, where developers can rapidly build social enterprise apps. Apps that can scale to Fortune 500-sized companies. To speed up the app development process, we are releasing Open Source SDKs for iOS and Windows Phone 8. The SDKs enable you to add Yammer OAuth 2-based authentication to your smartphone and tablet apps. Once authenticated, you can use the SDKs to make REST calls to read/write from the Yammer API, thus integrating the full spectrum of Yammer’s social services into your mobile app. To start building Yammer Mobile App, ...

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In a large organization there are many individuals who may have valuable information, however, this information may not be getting to the write people. In a new survey commissioned by Microsoft, the solution to this problem has been found: Social Technology Adam Pisoni, Microsoft’s general manager of Yammer believes “Social is moving from a nice-to-have tool to a necessity in the workplace. As all companies are faced with the increasing pace of change, they need to leverage the ypower and knowledge of employees more than their current technologies allow. Just as email accelerated business in the 90s, social tools are driving a faster flow of knowledge and information within and across organizations.” There are now enterprise equivalents of Facebook, Twitter, etc., just for the workplace. These services can allow employees to privately share files, messages, ideas and more. These tools can help employees be more productive. With Yammer Microsoft is ...

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  Microsoft today revealed its future plans for integrating Enterprise social network Yammer with SharePoint. So far, Microsoft has enabled single sign-on service for Yammer users with their SharePoint login credentials and in the future Microsoft is planning to have deeper connections between Yammer and SharePoint leading to more integrated connected experiences. Here is the plan from their blog post, Basic Integration. This summer we’ll update the Office 365 service and allow customers to replace the SharePoint newsfeed with Yammer. Many customers are worried about confusing their users with two different feeds, and this update will allow them to simply replace the “Newsfeed” link on the Office 365 global navigation bar with a link to Yammer.com. We’ll also ship a Yammer app in the SharePoint Store so that end users can easily embed a Yammer group feed into a SharePoint site, creating a connection between groups and sites that will ...

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Microsoft is increasing its user based CALs pricing by over 15%. As opposed to Device CAL, User based CAL allows unlimited device access to the server. Here is the statement from Microsoft on the changes in the pricing, “Microsoft recently notified partners about enterprise Client Access Licenses (CALs) changes so they can inform customers about their options before the changes take effect on December 1, 2012. These CAL changes include a user-based option that offers more value in support across unlimited devices and simplifies licensing management and compliance as devices in the workplace proliferate. Pricing for user CALs will change to reflect the increased value. Customers should work with their Microsoft partner or account team to assess their options.” The following Microsoft enterprise products will be affected by this new licensing change: Bing Maps Server CAL Core CAL Suite Enterprise CAL Suite Exchange Server Standard and Enterprise CALs Lync Server ...

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After polling nearly 10,000 “information workers” Forrester Research found 32% of employees preferred a Windows to power their next tablet. 12% wanted Windows 7 on their tablet while 20% wanted Windows 8. Forrester commented that “Windows 8 has higher interest than we expected among employees” and that it “bodes well for Windows 8′s prospects for bring-your-own-device (BYOD) demand.” They suggested employees will force IT to have a formal support policy for Windows 8 for employee-owned devices and that Windows 8 will accelerate BYOD demand. Read more at Forrester.com here. Via Fiercemobile.it ...

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The iPad is not the best business computer. There is a lot of optimism around Microsoft recently, and a report from Business Insider from a Chief Information Officer from a large enterprise company that plans to buy 4000 Surface Pro tablets instead of iPads will certainly continue to add fuel to the fire. He plans to use the tablets to replace 4,000 aging Windows PCs, devices which he initially planned to replace with iPads. "For a large part of the executive team, we do need mobile devices and we were leaning towards the iPad," he said. "That’s that’s changed with the Surface." He notes it takes as long to learn the iPad user interface than Windows 8, and it did not offer the same advantages. "The big killer app for us is Office," he said. "We want to do Office natively" on the device because there’s better compatibility when running ...

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