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2020 is here and the arguments around the art of perfect project management are still in the mainstream. With fast-paced advancements across organizational functions, project development has to address the paradigm shift happening everywhere, internally in our work cultures and externally in the market trends. And since project managers are the flag bearers of the bandwagon, they must act sooner than everyone else.

Having led a swaddle or projects from the front, 2019 has revamped my understanding of the roles in discussion. It is way more complex yet exciting in the months to arrive. Here’s a quick run-through of the 3 skills that I believe project managers must acquire.

A deeper understanding of Emotional Intelligence (EQ)

Till about last year, subject matter experts and those with in-hand technical experience were preferred for management roles. They, although continue to supersede non-technical candidates but are falling short of an essential trait – emotional intelligence (EQ).

To be able to handle interpersonal relationships at work judiciously can create an enthusiastic workforce, exactly what EQ stands for. Given the increasing number of stakeholders associated with a project, consistent & correct communication is the greatest expectation and managers of the future should adhere to the same. As the project implementations become diversely categorized, managers have to collaborate with a wider pool of stakeholders externally and diverse teams internally.

Along with the ability to hone technological transition, managers need to embrace communication skills, mentor their teams while keeping intact to core strategy building and business management skills. Not to miss, the ability to make data-driven decisions in the digital ecosystem is equally essential. As the learning curve is steep, managers must up their game and emerge multi-faceted.

However, that doesn’t detach them from their core responsibilities. In 2020, managers must enhance their rudimentary application knowledge in emerging technologies such as Blockchain, AI, Data science, etc.

Therefore, the pursuit of such hybrid skills will require thorough retrospection followed by proactive learning. Consider soliciting all-round analysis of your current strengths and weaknesses while seeking feedback from peers or taking up professional courses.

 

 Embracing Hybrid Project Development methodologies

I have been vouching for hybrid methodologies for long. In rapidly changing implementation landscapes, uniform project development approaches tend to give up at some point or the other. Not that I am not pleased with Agile delivery anymore, it’s just the extended benefits of bringing Waterfall back to the scene. As a project focused organization, we are looking forward to creating exciting extensibilities by bundling different project delivery practices and produce the one that seeks the best of all. Besides simplifying our developments, the hybrid approach has empowered us to stay compliant with speed to market while being flexible to make changes at any given time.

While some will argue that these approaches are diametrically opposed and therefore mutually exclusive, my own personal experience begs to differ. These practices may look exclusively different diagrammatically (which they actually are) but still, the possibility of using both can’t be ignored. Yes, implementing Agile into classic project environments or vice-versa is absolutely plausible.

As per a survey, approx. 26% of professionals used hybrid project delivery methodology. 63% of those working IT software development confirmed greater throughputs.

As Agile and others become increasingly popular, managers must revisit the books. Which means, not sticking to that one methodology they have worked upon, future project managers must get familiar with the entire catalog.

Going forward, begin with browsing different case studies (there are ample available online). Try to incorporate a hybrid approach in some applications.

Monitoring Expansive Distributed Teams 

Teams have already gone beyond geographies, driving critical communications through digital mediums and it has been working all well. What’s changing is the increasing number of people wanting to take up remote work. Given the drastic cost reduction it means for organizations, they were always up for it. Furthermore, it is the project managers who should be worrying if they took this trend casually.

Managing people working from different time zones while keeping everyone on the same page requires pulling out all the stops and managers must prepare themselves.

At Henson Group, our teams work from diverse locations all over the world and we made sure this doesn’t affect our deliveries. They should learn tools on the cloud so that administrative hassles such as system access, attendance, task assignment & reporting don’t create any obstructions. This becomes even more imperative when teams are getting leaner, per head responsibilities are increasing and the deadlines have gone narrower.

 Going Forward 

No matter what newer comes on board, the core responsibilities of managers towards the individual betterment of the employees and the organizations collectively stay intact. You mustn’t stop conceiving innovative ideas, encouraging fairer practices; develop a culture of R&D in addition to the previously mentioned skills. 2020 is going to get crazily interesting.

 

 


Do you have SQL Server 2008 ? Are you worried about End of Support ?

End of support means the end of regular security updates. With cyber attacks becoming more sophisticated and frequent, running apps and data on unsupported versions can create significant security and compliance risks.

On the Positive , this is great Opportunity for you to transform your applications and infrastructure to take advantage of cloud computing and the latest versions of SQL Server .

The good news is that ” If You Migrate to Azure, you get free Extended Security Updates” . When you Migrate to Azure you get below benefits . Figure 2 is for Servers only .

 

Capture

So if you have SQL Server 2008 and are worried about End of Support , you can always reach out to me @ Abheek@HensonGroup.com . I am sure with my team of Ex- Microsoft and MVP’s we will make this move easy for you .


With changing times , CSP Model has gained more popularity across the companies currently using Azure ! Not only the Model provides great benefits , it also makes life easy for the companies IT Departments .

Customers use Azure in different models mainly Pay as you go , EA , BizSpark etc . With the entry of CSP model , it has become the most popular of all these models  . The Model is a Win-win for both the customers , Microsoft and its partners .

While the customers can migrate to CSP from most of their Existing Models , but you can have hard time with EA . Moreover if you are currently on ASM , you would first need to migrate to ARM based Model and then to CSP .

 

I found the attached guide from MS very useful if you plan to migrate your resources to CSP Model .

 

ASM to ARM Step by Step

 

 

 

 

New lower Azure pricing


Interesting Article for those who plan to Migrate to Azure

 

As part of our continued commitment to deliver Azure to customers at the best possible prices, effective October 1st, we are lowering prices on many of our most popular virtual machines (VMs). The rest of this blog covers key highlights, but if you are ready to learn more, please check out our redesigned website that makes it easier for you identify the VM categories that map to your use cases and find their prices across our regions.

Here is the summary of the changes:

  • General Purpose Instances: Prices of our Dv2 series VMs will be reduced by up to 15%. We are also lowering prices of our A1 and A2 Basic VMs by up to 50%.
  • Compute Optimized Instances: Prices of our F series will be reduced up to 11%.
  • Av2 series: In November 2016, we will introduce new A series virtual machines (Av2), with prices up to 36% lower than the A series Standard VM prices available today.

More Details : https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/new-lower-azure-pricing/


Companies like Microsoft, Amazon and Google continue to compete fiercely in the area of cloud services for consumers, developers and enterprises, and today Microsoft made its latest moves to lay out its bid to lead the race, while also launching a new mission to position itself as the cloud provider you can trust.

Microsoft announced it would build its first Azure data center in France this year, as part of a $3 billion investment that it has made to build its cloud services in Europe. At the same time, the company also launched a new publication, Cloud for Global Good, with no fewer than 78 public policy recommendations in 15 categories like data protection and accessibility issues.

The new expansion, investment and “trust” initiative were revealed by Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, who was speaking at an event in Dublin, Ireland. He said that the expansion would mean that Microsoft covers “more regions than any other cloud provider… In the last year the capacity has more than doubled.”

As a measure of how Microsoft and Amazon are intent on levelling each other on service availability right now, the news of the French data center comes one month after Amazon announced that it would also be building a data center in France.

Nadella, of course, did not mention AWS by name but that is the big elephant in the room for Microsoft. Nadella said today that Microsoft has data centers covering 30 regions across the globe, “more regions than any other cloud provider,” with the European footprint including Ireland, the Netherlands, the UK and Germany.

In Germany, its data center is operated by Deutsche Telekom on Microsoft’s behalf in atrustee model, a move made both for “digital sovereignty and compliance,” Nadella said, “and a real world understanding of what the customer needs.”

The popularity of cloud-based storage and services has grown exponentially in the last several years, fuelled by the rise of smartphones and tablets that rely on cloud-based architectures to run apps; as well as a rise of other consumer and enterprise services that have also taken a remote storage and processing approach to deliver software more efficiently.

While Microsoft may have lost to companies like Google/Android and Apple when it came to building a mobile platform or phone that is widely used by the mass market, it’s hoping that its presence in cloud services will give it a place at the table for computing in the future.

“We have a very particular point of view by what we mean by mobile first and cloud first,” Nadella said today “It’s about the mobility of your experience across all devices in your life [and] the way to achieve that mobility … those experiences… is only possible because of the cloud.”

 

More :  https://techcrunch.com/2016/10/03/microsoft-expands-azure-datacenters-to-france-looks-to-beat-aws-on-image-of-trust/?ncid=rss&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Techcrunch+%28TechCrunch%29


Microsoft and Adobe today announced a major partnership that will see Adobe deliver its cloud services on Microsoft Azure and that will make Adobe the preferred marketing service for Microsoft’s Dynamics 365 Enterprise CRM solution.

Microsoft says Adobe will now make Azure its “preferred cloud platform” for its three main services: the Adobe Marketing Cloud, Creative Cloud and Document Cloud. Specifically, Adobe will use SQL Server and Azure’s machine learning services available in the Microsoft Cortana Intelligence Suite.

“Customers today expect a well-designed, personalized and consistent experience every time they engage with a brand,” said Shantanu Narayen, president and CEO of Adobe, in a statement today. “Adobe and Microsoft will bring together the cloud horsepower and end-to-end capabilities brands need to design and deliver great digital experiences.”

As is so often the case with these partnership announcement, quite a few questions remain unanswered. Traditionally, Adobe has run its own data centers, for example, and it’s unclear from today’s announcement what will happen to these (though we have asked Adobe for comment and will update this post once we hear more).

 

More : https://techcrunch.com/2016/09/26/microsoft-signs-up-adobe-for-its-azure-cloud-computing-services/?ncid=rss&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Techcrunch+%28TechCrunch%29&sr_share=twitter


A lot of times Customers will ask you questions regarding Monitoring in Hybrid Cloud or Cloud Security . This happens all the more when a New Customer plans to move to cloud . Microsoft Operations Management Suite , is a solution ( to an extent ) to the customer questions .

Microsoft Operations Management Suite

Microsoft Operations Management Suite

More Details :

Microsoft OMS is the IT management solution for the hybrid cloud. Used alone or to extend your existing System Center deployment, OMS gives you the maximum flexibility and control for cloud-based management of your infrastructure. With OMS, you can manage any instance in any cloud, including on-premises, Azure, AWS, Windows Server, Linux, VMware, and OpenStack, at a lower cost than competitive solutions. Built for the cloud-first world, OMS offers a new approach to managing your enterprise that is the fastest, most cost-effective way to meet new business challenges and accommodate new workloads, applications and cloud environments. Microsoft OMS delivers:
 Simplicity: A single portal for all your management tasks. No infrastructure to maintain.
 Time to value: Onboard fast. No content to create. Connects to your on-premises datacenter.
 Easy to integrate: Add new servers, or connect to your existing management tools within minutes.
 Hybrid and open: Manage workloads across Windows and Linux, hybrid and public clouds, Azure and AWS.
 Optimized for System Center: Complements your System Center investment to unleash new management scenarios


Link to Download :  https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/evalcenter/evaluate-system-center-technical-preview?WT.mc_id=Blog_SC_Announce_TTD?i=1

SCCM 2016


This post was written by Vijay Kumar, senior product marketing manager, and Raji Dani, principal program manager for the Office 365 Security team.

As a cloud services provider, we recognize that organizations understandably want to have full control over access to their content stored in cloud services. Today at RSA, we announcedCustomer Lockbox for Office 365, a new capability designed to provide customers with unprecedented control over their content in the service. Customer Lockbox gives customers explicit control in the very rare instances when a Microsoft engineer may need access to customer content to resolve a customer issue.

In our efforts to maximize data security and privacy for Office 365 customers, we have engineered the service to require nearly zero interaction with customer content by Microsoft employees.  Nearly all service operations performed by Microsoft are fully automated and the human involvement is highly controlled and abstracted away from customer content. As a result, only in rare cases—such as when troubleshooting a customer issue with mailbox or document contents—does a Microsoft engineer have any reason to access customer content in Office 365.

Microsoft Engineers do not have standing access to any service operation.  All access is obtained through a rigorous access control technology called Lockbox. Today, Lockbox enforces access control through multiple levels of approval within Microsoft, providing just-in-time access with  limited and time-bound authorization. In addition, all access control activities in the service are logged and audited.

With today’s announcement, we are bringing customers into the Lockbox approval process for instances involving access to customer content. Use of the Customer Lockbox feature ensures that Microsoft engineer does not get access to the customer’s content without customer’s explicit approval. When the customer gets the request for access, they can scrutinize the request and either approve or reject it. Until the request is approved, the Microsoft engineer will not be granted access.

Announcing Customer Lockbox for Office 365 1

Of course transparency and control are important in achieving trust, and all Customer Lockbox activity will be available to customers via the Office 365 Management Activity logs for easy integration into customer security monitoring and reporting systems.

Customer Lockbox will be available for Exchange Online by the end of 2015, and for SharePoint Online by the first quarter of 2016.

Read More :  http://blogs.office.com/2015/04/21/announcing-customer-lockbox-for-office-365/

What is Clutter in Office 365


Clutter

Clutter is an email filtering option available to Office 365 customers.  It is similar to an anti-spam filter as it moves less important email (based on your reading habits) into a ‘Clutter’ folder where they can be ignored or reviewed later.  Most of the mail going into the folder should be bulk mail (advertisements) and messages from mailing lists.  However, you will want to periodically check the Clutter folder as it may move legitimate email into this folder.

Clutter is not enabled by default.  To enable Clutter log into OWA , click on the Gear,Options, Automatic Processing, Clutter and select Separate items identified as Clutter then click Save.  When it is first enabled, it will create a folder in your mailbox called Clutter.

If you are using OWA and need to mark messages as “not clutter”,  either right click on the message and choose ‘Mark as not clutter’ or just drag it to the Inbox. If Exchange is missing messages you want marked as clutter, right click and choose ‘Mark as clutter’ or drag it to the Clutter folder. In Outlook and other clients, you’ll need to drag a message to the clutter folder to mark it as clutter or drag it to the Inbox to mark it not clutter.

Users can drag messages they deem suitable to the Clutter folder to “train” the tool to spot similar email in the future. The tool gets smarter over time, learning from your prior actions with similar messages.

Once Clutter is enabled in OWA, it appears in other clients linked to that Exchange account, including Outlook on both Windows and OS X desktops and notebooks, and the iPhone and Android OWA apps.

Note:  If you have rules moving messages, Clutter is applied after server-side rules are applied and items touched by rules won’t be filtered by clutter.

2014 in review


The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The Louvre Museum has 8.5 million visitors per year. This blog was viewed about 77,000 times in 2014. If it were an exhibit at the Louvre Museum, it would take about 3 days for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.


Those who are Familiar with SCCM Software / Application Deployment will find this process very Much Similar . But for those who have no Experience in Deployment tool will find Software Deployment Using Intune quite Easy As well.

Deploying Software /Application Using Microsoft Intune

Login to your Microsoft Intune Account and Click on Deploy Software .

Software Deployment Using Microsoft Intune

Software Deployment Using Microsoft Intune

This Will Launch the “Microsoft Intune Software Publisher ” ( A tool used to Deploy Software / Applications ) . Now Once the Tool is Launched , you will see something similar to screen shot mentioned below :

Software Deployment Using Microsoft Intune

Software Deployment Using Microsoft Intune

You will see 5 Options that can be used but for Deploying Software Choose the first option and click on Next :

Software Deployment Using Intune

Software Deployment Using Intune

In this Example I will be Deploying Apple App from the App Store . Select the Apple App Optino from Drop Down and then Enter the URL of the App from App Store :

Click Next :

Software Deployment Using Intune

Software Deployment Using Intune

Give Specifications . You can Also Associate an Image to this App .

Click Next :

Select the Mobile Device Type

Software Deployment Using Intune

Software Deployment Using Intune

Software Deployment Using Intune

Software Deployment Using Intune

: I selected Both :

Click Next and this will Take you to Summary Page and then Click next for upload Page :

Software Deployment Using Intune

Software Deployment Using Intune

Click Close :

This Will complete the Wizard . NOw you will be required to Deploy it to a Specific Collection / Group :

Software Deployment Using Intune

Software Deployment Using Intune

Select the App and then Select the Group :

Software Deployment Using Intune

Software Deployment Using Intune

Give Specific Criteria like If you want this Deployment to be Mandatory / Required or Available .

Software Deployment Using Intune

Software Deployment Using Intune

Click Finish to Complete the Set up.

On your Mobile Device you will soon see something like this :

photo (1)


This Post is in Continuation to my previous Post on ”

Remote Lock Mobile Device from Microsoft Intune

URL : https://abheekdutta.com/2014/12/10/remote-lock-mobile-device-from-microsoft-intune/

In this Post we will check on How to Reset Passcode of IOS Devices From Microsoft Intune :

Lock Mobile From Intune

Right Click the Device of which you want to reset the passcode :

Click on Reset Passcode :

Lock Mobile From Intune 2

As you see I have executed the Reset Passcode command from Intune Console and After my IOS device receives the Policy from Server , here is what happens on it :

photo

As you see the command has been executed .

Note : Since I have Exchange Accounts configured on my device it is asking me to set password before those accounts can download new Emails . 


Lets now start with Various Things that can be done from Microsoft Intune .

Lets get started from Simple first :

Remote Lock Mobile Device from Microsoft Intune 

Today , let us try and Lock a Mobile device which is Enrolled with Microsoft Intune .

refer to below Screen .

Lock Mobile Phone from Intune

Lock Mobile Phone from Intune

Now , If you want to Lock the Mobile from Intune :

Right Click the Device and Click Remote Lock .

Remote Lock Mobile From Microsoft Intune

Remote Lock Mobile From Microsoft Intune

 

Check below for Update on Microsoft Intune Portal :

Lock Mobile From Intune 3


In  this post today , we will talk about managing IOS  devices with Microsoft Intune .

Various Steps Involved are :

1. Download a Certificate  Signing Request for a  APNs Certificate

2. Renew the APN Certificate in Apple Portal

3. Upload the APN certificate in Microsoft Intune Portal

4. Download Company Portal app on your IOS device

5. Install the app and Login Using Intune User

6. Use this IOS device and manage it from Intune Portal

Managing IOS based Devices with Intune – Detailed

Login in Microsoft Intune Portal :https://manage.microsoft.co

Manage IOS Devices Using Microsoft Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Microsoft Intune

Save the Certificate on your Computer

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Click on Apple  Push Certificate Portal and Login Using Apple  ID :

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Click on Create a Certificate Request :

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Accept the Agreement :

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Find the certificate that you saved on your Computer and Upload it :

The Download the Push Certificate Created:

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Apple APN 6

Now Upload the APNs certificate in INTUNE Portal:

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Click Upload :

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

browse the Certificate and then Enter the Same Apple ID:

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Now , the Settings at Server  end  are done:

Open App Store on your Iphone /IOS Device and download Company Portal App:

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Click on Enroll :

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

click on Install :

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Now you are Verified :

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Now Refresh the Intune Page Check Under all Mobile Devices and Your Iphone /IOS device will Appear there :

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

Manage IOS Devices Using Intune

m/

Navigate to Admin >Mobile device management >IOS > Upload APN Certificate

Click on the  Download the APNs Certificate  Request