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Office 365 Security

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Office 365 Data privacy

http://www.techquarters.com, tellmemore@techquarters.com 0800 148 8001. How safe is your data and how does Microsoft use it?

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Office 365 regulatory compliance

http://www.techquarters.com, tellmemore@techquarters.com 0800 148 8001. What is the regulatory compliance stance on Microsoft office 365 data centres.

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Office 365 Data Centre Certification

http://www.techquarters.com, tellmemore@techquarters.com 0800 148 8001. Microsoft Data centre Certifications explained.

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Microsoft unveils Office 365 In India

Microsoft unveils Office 365 In India

Microsoft eyes on-demand software market with cloud version of its Office offerings

Microsoft unveils Office 365 In IndiaMicrosoft has announced the launch of Office 365 in India to offer easy access to cost effective business productivity solutions on the cloud. This novel service will enable the enterprises to use Microsoft Office- including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, email and other software on a pay-per-use model.

Office 365 is built ground up with an updated platform and new infrastructure investments and is backed by the industry’s most rigorous financially-backed SLA, and will be available in different ‘packages’ in 40 countries depending on the size and need of the customer organization. These plans start for as little as $2 for basic e-mail to $27 per user per month, allowing SMEs and enterprise customers to access Microsoft’s popular e-mail, collaboration, conferencing and productivity capabilities online. This includes the most advanced versions of Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, Lync Online as well as an option to get the full power of Office Professional Plus desktop software, along with Office Web Apps.

The Office 365 plan for Small Businesses is optimized for organizations with 25 users or less and includes Office Web Apps, Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, Lync Online at approximately $6 per user per month.

This launch is part of Microsoft’s comprehensive Cloud Services Strategy. Almost all of Microsoft’s on premise enterprise solutions are already on the cloud, and the launch of Office 365 takes it to the next level. Microsoft’s customers can choose to deploy either cloud based or on premise solutions, or both, depending on their need, and in turn experience the flexibility and cost control needed to drive higher business productivity.

SaaS or “on-demand software,” is a model in which software and its associated data are hosted centrally (typically in the cloud), and accessed using a web browser over the Internet. Cloud computing facilitates sharing of technological resources, software and digital information. Since this technology is internet-based, data and solutions can be accessed from anywhere using a browser. It is this market Microsoft is eyeing with the new product.

In the coming months, Microsoft Office 365 will also provide significant opportunities to a huge ecosystem of partners that will sell, customise and provide consulting, migration and managed services for Microsoft Online Services to Indian small and medium businesses.

Microsoft Office 365 provides all of the familiar enterprise class productivity solutions on a flexible usage and payment model, delivering streamlined communication with high availability, comprehensive security and simplified IT management. Customers who have already started using the services are realizing savings from reduced hardware, software and operational costs.

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Microsoft Office 365 Preview: Hello Lync, Goodbye Live Meeting

Microsoft’s Office 365, now set for rollout on June 28, will swap out Office Communications Online and Live Meeting for the new Lync Online, while also improving the online editions of Exchange and PowerPoint, an analyst said this week, during a preview of a new cloudbased office suite aimed at tailorability to businesses of all sizes.

“Lync Online will be about collaboration,” contended Wes Miller, research VP for server applications at Directions on Microsoft, during a Webcast held just a few days before the impending launch.

Lync Online will supply instant messaging (IM), user presence, and online meetings, complete with audio, video, and screen sharing. Yet unlike Live Meeting, a component of Office Communications that supported online meetings among up to 2500 participants, Lync online will only allow about 250 people to collaborate at a time. Live Meeting will now start to fade into history.

Microsoft might have found out through customers that most companies don’t hold online meetings with over 250 people, anyway, Miller theorized. “Beyond that, it becomes a Webcast, not a meeting,” he noted.

Now in beta since April, Office 365 — a replacement for Microsoft’s earlier Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS) — will offer some definite advantages over the “on premises” Lync, Exchange, and PowerPoint, which require businesses to run their own dedicated servers, according to the analyst.

The benefits will include “almost instant deployment of applications vs. on-premises,” along with “per user/per month predictable spend” and “no long-term investment/depreciation of hardware.”

For end users, Office 365 will “build upon familiar applications and experiences,” according to Miller. Companies can generally expect “lower user retaining and migration costs than with Google Apps.”

On the other hand, he admitted, businesses deeply concerned about keeping sensitive data inhouse — or about meeting regulatory requirements — might not be comfortable about stepping to Office 365 or any cloud-based office environment.

‘Lync is probably the biggest gap”

Moreover, the feature sets of the Microsoft-hosted editions aren’t yet completely on par with their on-premises cousins, according to Miller. “Lync is probably the biggest gap,” he illustrated.

In contrast to the Lync on-premise server previously released by Microsoft, Lync Online will not include the integrated built-in telephony support that Microsoft’s Bill Gates foresees as ridding businesses of the need for PBXes and those pesky old-fashioned desktop phones that are still limited to voice calling only.

Instead, Office 365 isn’t anticipated to add this server-based telephony support until the end of this year, or even later — and even then, only in its most pricey package, which will be known as E4.

Through this server-based telephony, the “on-premises” Lync lets users collaborate through both voice and data from smartphones such as Apple iPhones, as well as from specially outfitted desktop phones.

Right at the outset, Lync Online will allow for both voice- and data-based collaboration, but only on a “PC-to-PC” basis, according to Miller. Yet the analyst also speculated that Microsoft might ultimately build in some new VoiP (voice over Internet protocol) capabilities obtained through its recent Skype acquisition

Web Apps vs. Office 2010 Pro Plus

Additional Office 365 packages will include E1, a direct replacement for BPOS; E2, an edition that will add Web apps to BPOS; and E3, which rolls in Micorosft Office 2010, plus some ECAL features.

Microsoft will also offer a “Small Business” (P1) package, along with two packages, K1 and K2, for so-called “Kiosk Workers.” Priced at $4 per user/per month, the K1 package will support Exchange/SharePoint Web access. At $10, K2 adds Office Web apps.

The Small Business (P1) hosted services, on the other hand, include Lync, Exchange, and SharePoint — although only through “a very simple Web site” — along with Microsoft Office Web Apps.

Priced at $6 per user/per month, the P1 level services are theoretically designed for up to 50 users. However, according to Miller, even a very small business might opt for “E” instead of “P1” services under certain circumstances. (In case you’re wondering, the “E” in Microsoft’s packaging scenarios stands for “Enterprise.”)

“To my knowledge, the minimum number of licenses required for E is 1. So the principal thing that would preclude a small business from going with an E package is most likely the price, Miller wrote, in an e-mail to TechTarget/TechnologyGuide.

As examples of very small businesses that might opt for “E” rather than “P1,” Miller cited companies that need “features only available in E,” such as Office 2010 Pro Plus, and those that are either “right on the edge” of P1’s 50-user limit or that expect to surpass it soon.

Microsoft’s Office Web Apps provide some but not all of the same functionality as Office Pro Plus, Essentially, the Web Apps are for “document viewing and simple editing/creation,” he elaborated. The Excel Web App can’t run macros, add charts, or open Excel 2003 .xls files. Also, the Web Apps will work online only.

Miller added that, in his experience, the Web Apps work well with Firefox and Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE) browsers, but sometimes glitchily with Google’s Chrome browser.

Microsoft, however, will also support some earlier editions of Office for Windows desktop applications — along with Office 2007, 2008 and 2011 for Mac — for connectivity to Office 365, he said.

‘Licensing story can get complicated’

Additionally, although “E” services at all levels will be available in entirely Microsoft-hosted scenarios, Miller suggested that the services will often be deployed through shared hosting, with companies augmenting Microsoft’s cloud with software running on their own servers.

“None of the packages ‘require’ an on-premises server — but generally life gets easier, especially as an organization grows, if on-premises servers are there,” he told me.

Pricing for the E packages will vary considerably, according to Miller. “The licensing story for Office 365 can get rather complicated rather quickly,” the analyst observed.

Also during the preview, Miller outlined the main strengths and weaknesses of the Exchange Online and SharePoint components of Office 365.

The new Exchange Online, for example, provides a 25 GB mailbox with Outlook and Outlook Web App access, mobile e-mail for most devices, and shared calendars, contacts, and tasks. Voicemail has been added for unified messaging (UM). On the other hand, support is absent for unlimited message size, managed folders, or public folders.

SharePoint Online offers external connectivity for partners and off-premises workers. Support is available for Microsoft Access, InfoPath Forms, and Visio Services. Microsoft has now added document-level permissions. However, the new online edition doesn’t support PowerPivot or other business intelligence (BI) features, and it doesn’t provide search integration with Exchange, FAST, or Windows 7 search, the analyst said.

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Microsoft unveils Office 365 cloud platform | Applications – InfoWorld

Microsoft unveils Office 365 cloud platform
The new offering features Office, SharePoint Online, Exchange Online, and Lync Online as a bundled, hosted package
By Paul Krill | InfoWorld

 Microsoft, with its Microsoft Office 365 hosted applications announced Tuesday, is offering Office, SharePoint Online, Exchange Online, and Lync Online as an “always-up-to-date” cloud service. Office 365, the company said, makes it easier for organizations to use the company's solutions via cloud computing. Users can work together more easily from anywhere on virtually any device, including smartphones, Microsoft said. [ Microsoft's Lync Server 2010 communications server is a real step forward, InfoWorld columnist J. Peter Bruzzese said last week. | Keep up with the latest apps news with InfoWorld's Technology: Applications newsletter. ] Although Microsoft previously has offered cloud services, such as its Business Productivity Online Suite and Office Live Small Business, Office 365 represents a new approach to cloud applications because it brings together Office desktop software and Office Web Apps to Microsoft business cloud services for the first time, a Microsoft representative said. It also features more complete versions of Exchange, SharePoint, and Lync and a new platform with single sign-in, federated identity, and scripting. “[Office 365 is] including the Office apps as part of their cloud offerings. They didn't do that before,” said analyst Jeff Mann of Gartner. Enterprises might be interested because they can access Microsoft's applications via a cloud, which is easier and potentially cheaper, Mann said. A Microsoft executive emphasized that Office 365 represents change as well as opportunities. “Office 365 is one of the most transformative moves we've made with Office. We've taken the best of everything we know about productivity, and we're delivering it all in one cloud service. This resets the bar for what people will expect of productivity applications in the cloud,” said Microsoft's Kurt DelBene, president of the Microsoft Office Division, in an interview released by the company. “No longer is Office only a rich client that connects to servers; it is part of the services offering that we manage for customers. This will change our ongoing relationship with customers across all points of engagement, including product testing, the sales cycle, product deployment and customer support,” DelBene continued. “Office 365 is an opportunity for us to explore new possibilities. We can reach customers who don't have the IT resources to manage enterprise-class software. And, we can help customers stay up to date with the latest versions of our products. The impact of Office 365 will be far-reaching, because we can bring enterprise-class applications to everyone,” he said. Microsoft is offering Office 365 for enterprises and small businesses. It will be available worldwide next year, and it will be expanded to include Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online later in 2011. For enterprises, Office 365 offers choices for midsize and large businesses and government organizations, with prices starting at $2 per month for basic email. Enterprises also have the option to get Microsoft Office Professional Plus desktop software on a pay-as-you-go basis. Small businesses can get an external website and access Office Web Apps, Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, and Lync Online for $6 per month. This article, “Microsoft unveils Office 365 cloud platform,” was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Follow the latest developments in business technology news and get a digest of the key stories each day in the InfoWorld Daily newsletter.Read more about applications in InfoWorld's Applications Channel.
Paul Krill is an editor at large at InfoWorld, focusing on coverage of application development (desktop and mobile) and core Web technologies such as HTML5, Java, and Flash.

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