Microsoft Top of Mind for Business after Attending Ignite (Video)

Attendees walked away from Microsoft Ignite and Envision with plentiful ideas and possibilities. This year's event was rich in vision, innovation and business strategy, and aligns well with where businesses remain challenged with cloud, mobility, and security initiatives. Microsoft raised its game and the volume to the enterprise customer and did an admirable job shifting Microsoft to the top of minds of IT pros and business executives.

While Microsoft has made strides in the market, the company also needs to remain humble and empathize with its customers. For example, if a customer is on the latest version of Windows 10 and has strategically positioned apps in Azure while using Microsoft identity and conditional access, then they will have set themselves up with a strong security posture, but not all businesses have achieved this desired state. The onus is then on Microsoft to transform its go-to-market partners and system integrators to help create the market traction and execution success.

Topics: Microsoft Enterprise Mobility Microsoft Ignite

Microsoft Ignite Enterprise Mobility and Security Highlights

For enterprise IT shops that may have been dismissive of Microsoft as they plan and implement their mobility strategies, Ignite proved that it is time to pay attention. Let’s face it, Microsoft has had to play catch up, but this is the first time I have seen validation of enterprise customer success, business success, and technology innovation. Here are a few highlights I’m seeing here at the event.

Topics: Microsoft Cybersecurity Enterprise Mobility Microsoft Ignite

Will WannaCry Help Drive Google Chromebooks?

Microsoft Windows is prime target for cybercriminals, and the daunting cadence of patching places businesses at great risk. Factor in the unsettling thought that critical business systems still run on Windows operating systems that have reached EOL years ago. IT pros like to point the finger at Microsoft and, while one would think that exploits like WannaCry ransomware should negatively impact Microsoft’s credibility, the vendor is not likely going to be held accountable. However, the skyrocketing valuation of cybersecurity IT vendors as a result of WannaCry also has the potential to create a similar ripple effect for Google Chromebooks.

First, let’s agree that if a business system is written and designed around the Windows operating system, it’s likely going to involve an application migration and/or re-platform. Typically, projects like these are associated with a high cost of change that halts investment. Now, let’s factor in the race to the cloud for applications, data, business intelligence, and improved security. With this technology shift, the conundrum of an application being written to run locally on a client OS is diminishing—thus creating an ideal environment for companies to consider Google Chromebooks. WannaCry has indeed generated an opportunity for Google to:

Topics: Microsoft google Enterprise Mobility chromebook wannacry

Microsoft Build: a Smarter Future Today

Microsoft Build is aimed at developers. From the presenters' dress code of jeans and tight polo shirts or T-shirts, this much is clear. The expectation is that attendees are here to learn to use a broad portfolio of Microsoft software and cloud resources to create new applications. The keynotes were a mix of genuinely inspiring, even life-changing possibilities and the lines of code that were used to make it happen.

A top-level theme was" cloud’s new edge," or rather the combination of an intelligent cloud with an intelligent edge. Since I've been writing for a while about how the battlefield for cloud isn't resource capacity per unit cost, but rather the tooling for integrated and assisted analytics, this idea wasn't a big surprise to me. See a few example blogs here and here and here

Topics: Cloud Computing Microsoft Data Management artificial intelligence Microsoft Build

Microsoft's Broad AI Strategy in 10 Tweets

This morning Microsoft hosted an analyst-oriented overview of select elements of the company's artificial intelligence strategy. Since they said it wasn't under a NDA, I'm happy to share that with you here. This really just scratches the surface (no pun intended) of their offerings around AI, machine learning, deep learning, and associated applications, enhancements, APIs, and development platforms. As noted in several blogs before, this will be the major battleground for the cloud service providers. It was high time Microsoft took the field and strutted their might. I'll have more to say on the topic after Microsoft Build next week.
Topics: Microsoft Data Management artificial intelligence

2017 Channel Acceleration Awards - Part 2

OK, we’re back… If you are just joining this series, you can check out the previous post and award winners here! If you are back for more, here we go...

Topics: Microsoft channel Digital Guardian pure storage esg channel acceleration awards

Wrap-Up on Backup from Microsoft Ignite (with Video)

As ESG often tries to do, here is a short summary video of ESG’s impressions from a major industry event – Microsoft Ignite, held in Atlanta over September 26-29, 2016 – from a backup perspective.

In the video, I suggested that Microsoft is a leader in Windows data protection. Certainly, this is not to disparage the many Microsoft partners that have built whole companies and product lines around data protection. And from a revenue perspective, their backup offerings wouldn’t register at all.  But …

Topics: Microsoft Backup Data Protection Windows Microsoft Ignite

Does the king of CRM need a food taster?

The big news in the marketing world last week was Microsoft's announcement that it plans to acquire LinkedIn for $26.2 billion. Admittedly, I was a little unclear as to Microsoft's motives at first; what use would Microsoft have for a social network that, let's be honest, tends to be the butt of social media jokes as often as it serves a significant role in any business' marketing plans?

Topics: Microsoft Salesforce CRM

Why the Citrix and Microsoft partnership is important

Citrix and Microsoft are not strangers to one another. On the contrary — they’ve been successfully working together for the past 10+ years. In fact, Citrix has been one of the few companies that’s been able to dance with what many technology companies consider to be the “black widow.” But the light has been dimming between the two companies in the past few years as Citrix has experienced some rocky times, and Microsoft has enriched a competing portfolio.

Topics: Microsoft Citrix Enterprise Mobility

EMC, Dell, Pivotal, Microsoft, and ... Ford?

Last week was interesting. I spent most of it in Las Vegas at EMC World, which was as much about Dell as it was about EMC itself. There was a ceremonial handoff from Joe Tucci to Michael Dell to lead the new combined entity, but Jeremy Burton was perhaps even more in the spotlight as he outlined the vision.

Much of this vision was about the balance between traditional data center environments and something he called "cloud-native" applications. Substituting "next-gen" for "cloud-native" might be more accurate, as this category included everything from PaaS to big data to containers to hybrid clouds. Hadoop, Cassandra, and MongoDB were cited as examples as cloud-native, which felt odd. Certainly they are cloud-friendly, but they're by no means exclusively cloud-centric. See my last post on cloud big data for more thoughts on this topic.

Topics: Microsoft EMC Big Data Dell Data Management pivotal