One of the most frequent questions we get when we talk to potential customers about tooling is: "What about Microsoft Upgrade Readiness? How does Dashworks compare to that?" It's a very valid question since the Microsoft tool is available free of charge and also built by Microsoft. Since no one knows Windows 10 as well as Microsoft does, one can assume that they also know how to best ready and deploy it using proven industry practices.
5 Non-Technical Skills Your Business-as-Usual IT Team Must Have To Avoid Becoming Obsolete In This New As-A-Service World
Oct 3, 2017 7:41:00 AM / by Barry Angell
If you ask a bunch of different CIOs what is the biggest barrier to achieving his/her goals, you will likely hear the same answer: the current IT skill gap!
However, this isn't as simple as the IT skill gap that the industry faced in the past 2 decades. For twenty years, we encouraged young men and women in universities around the globe to learn about Object-Oriented Programming, Network Technologies, Web Services, and Service-Oriented Architecture, and within a few years, there were plenty of programmers, network specialists, and other IT professionals available to satisfy the demands.
Sep 27, 2017 5:51:16 PM / by Barry Angell
This article was also published on The Technology Record magazine here.
You know you are in a pickle when you are six months into your migration project and you still haven’t gotten any numbers on the board. As the responsible project manager, you are frustrated. There are a thousand questions running through your head: What went wrong? Where did the time go? What can I do to get this back on track? Is there a way I can accelerate this to get back on schedule? Should I increase the number of resources dedicated to this project?
Throwing more people at it certainly seems like the right thing to do. After all, you need to be seen to be doing something! This is the route that many a project manager has trodden! But what most project managers have come to realize after the fact is that throwing more people at it doesn’t always translate into a faster project. Only automation and appropriate tooling will do that.
Sep 22, 2017 1:59:00 PM / by Barry Angell
(Please note: This article will be updated periodically as the latest information is available. Last Update: September 15, 2017)
A while back, we took a closer look at the Windows 10 Servicing Model, formerly known as Windows Branching — a topic that is causing much confusion since the launch of Windows-as-a-Service. Back then, not much information was available, but because a lot of people felt they didn’t know enough about it, we:
- Gave a quick introduction to the Windows 10 Servicing Model
- Answered the top five questions customers frequently asked
- Covered how enterprises can keep abreast with the frequent updates ahead
- Showed you how to use Windows 10 Deployment Rings for efficient rollouts and
- Explained how you can accelerate your upgrade process using Dashworks.
In this article, we will pick apart the confusion around the Windows 10 Servicing Model release and support timelines and keep you updated on the latest news on terminology and rule updates.
Sep 18, 2017 7:37:00 AM / by Barry Angell
A few days ago, the credit rating company Equifax had to admit that inhackers had exploited a bug on the company's website to gain access to the personal data of more than 143 million customers. While this is devastating to those customers and the company itself, such cyber attacks are by no means uncommon. Only recently, ransomware such as WannaCry and WannaCry 2 held thousands of devices at ransom — made possible through a vulnerability in an older Windows version and therefore ultimately avoidable by upgrading to the latest version.
Hackers trying to exploit vulnerabilities in Microsoft products is not uncommon since Windows and Office 365 are some of the most commonly used platforms. Consequently, Microsoft is under enormous pressure to deliver better, tighter, and smarter security solutions that span the entire Windows stack. In the past two years, Windows 10 has seen many incredible security updates and improvements — making security the number one driver for upgrading to the latest version of the operating system.
Sep 6, 2017 4:51:05 PM / by Barry Angell
When it comes to technology, one thing is true: change is constant. In fact, technology today is changing faster than ever before. It changes the way we pay, shop, interact with other people, and even how we work. For businesses, this means they have to adapt — and fast — to exceed their shoppers' expectations by providing an outstanding omni-channel and digitally supported customer experience. Companies across all industries have to constantly push the innovation envelope to reach new customers and keep existing ones from wandering off to the competition.
Despite the political and economic uncertainties within the past 12 months, CEOs around the globe are prioritizing growth (58%) — a huge jump from last year's 42%. These growth innovations to improve customer experience and save costs are commonly known as "Digital Business Transformation" and often target a plethora of opportunities to outpace your competitors and reap untold savings. But achieving successful transformation is a journey full of potential roadblocks. In this blog we look at what those roadblocks are, and how to avoid them.
In 1876, a plant new to the United States called Kudzu, was introduced at the Japanese Pavillion at the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia. Due to its fast growth, the Soil Conservation Service encouraged farmers to plant Kudzu as a ground cover to prevent soil erosion during the Great Depression.
Aug 21, 2017 7:19:00 AM / by Barry Angell
The summer is almost over — which, for a lot of IT managers, means they need to start planning and preparing for upcoming budget rounds in the fall. And unless you are one of the lucky few that saw a spending increase last year and is expecting another bump in the coming year, figuring out the budget you need and what you can achieve with it is a difficult task.
Maybe it helps to know that you are not alone. Global economic uncertainty, currency fluctuations, and Brexit anxiety have put a damper on many IT budgets. In fact, in a recent SpiceWorks survey, IT organizations in the UK say they had to take an average 5% budget cut in 2017 from 2016 — and it's not looking much brighter for 2018.
Microsoft Inspire is now over and with so many announcements we think it is a good time to collect the big news all in one blog post. Many great discussions took place in Washington D.C. in July and with almost 18,000 attendees it was the biggest Microsoft partner event ever! As Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in his Vision Keynote address on Day 1, "Attendees at Microsoft Inspire come from 140 different countries, and the joint efforts of all these partners create 17 million jobs worldwide". With so many different technologies and new announcements, let us summarize what we learnt from the show...
Aug 14, 2017 8:31:00 AM / by Barry Angell
Recently, I had two very different conversations that really struck a chord with me.
The first was with an IT guy from a local firm looking to migrate a couple of thousand users to Windows 10. Even though he could have pulled off a successful migration with a set of spreadsheets and some elbow grease, he wasn't going to risk anything. He was eager to implement our migration project management tool, Dashworks, because he wanted a platform that was going to guarantee him a successful project.
A short while later, I spoke to a young, gung-ho enterprise IT project manager who was tasked to migrate over 80,000 users in a well-known enterprise. He was convinced that he would be "just fine" if he just rewrote the system he had previously used for Windows 7 and hand-cranked a bunch of databases, spreadsheets and sharepoint sites.
Having been part of these kinds of projects for more than a decade, I know which of the two guys sleeps well at night.