Thursday, October 02, 2014
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by host

This week in BPOS news is a recurring segment on the Microsoft Online Services Team Blog that covers news from all sectors of Cloud Computing and the Microsoft Online Services business suite known as the Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS). You can read all past This Week in BPOS News segments here.

Last week we announced the latest addition to Microsoft Online Services with the Health Dashboard. This week in BPOS News we feature two more of the latest additions to Microsoft BPOS; Office Web Apps and more customers.

1. Microsoft: Office Web Apps coming to its hosted business suite

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Microsoft Office web apps has 20 million users since its release earlier this year. Office Web apps is the newest addition to Microsoft BPOS which already consists of Microsoft properties including SharePoint, Exchange and Live Meeting. Office web apps allow “you to access and work in familiar Office programs virtually anywhere” and could bring a more robust offering to Microsoft BPOS. Watch this video to learn more about Office Web Apps.

The story from ComputerWorld quotes Microsoft General Manager, Betsy Webb, about this newest BPOS revelation.

"We'll certainly be talking a lot more about Office Web Apps delivered through BPOS as part of future capabilities of BPOS."

Are you excited about Office Web Apps coming to BPOS? How will this increase your productivity and collaboration? Let us know in the comments section.

2. Universities Go Back to School With Live@edu

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Earlier this week, we highlighted some of our new customers that are coming aboard Microsoft BPOS. Amongst them are some big companies including DuPont, Godiva and Volvo. (You can read more about the Godiva Chocolatier move to BPOS in this Microsoft Case Study.) One large group of new Microsoft cloud acquisitions comes to us in the form of educational facilities through Live@edu.

Live@edu is a cloud computing resource aimed at universities that include Microsoft products like Microsoft Office Outlook Live and online storage capabilities with SkyDrive to name just a few. Some of the universities that are turning to Microsoft’s Live@edu include several California schools, Washington University in St. Louis, Northern Kentucky University and Aston University in the United Kingdom. You can find out more about why Northern Kentucky University and Aston University in the United Kingdom chose Microsoft over the competition by clicking the links. You can also read about all the universities that recently chose Microsoft in greater detail in this Microsoft News Center press release.

What do you think about Universities moving to the cloud? How would you like to see the cloud used by the schools? Leave a comment below.

What are your thoughts about the stories we shared with you this week? Did you see a story you want to share with us? Let us know what other topics you’d like to see. You can comment on this blog post or send an email to our community mailbox. Follow us on Twitter and like our Facebook page.

by Brett

Microsoft Releases BPOS Trial Guide Updates

Microsoft has released a major update of the Microsoft Online Trial Guide.  The reason for the guide goes like this: You get a BPOS trial account.  Then you login to the administration center. Great! But if you don't know the services and don't quite know what to do - where do you go to get help? The trial guide is exactly what you need. It takes you through a step-by-step walkthrough of each of the services and some administration tasks so that at the end, you would have a good idea of how the services work.

What most people don't know, is that there is also a Managed Trial Guide. This guide is available only to BPOS partners and can be found on https://www.quickstartonlineservices.com.  The managed trial guide is like an instructor's manual for helping a customer work through the Trial Guide. It contains explanations, extra tasks and checklist you can use at the end of a  managed trial to that shows the customer did in fact complete the tasks in the Trial Guide and Managed Trial Guide.  I was involved with creating both of these documents so can tell you they are designed to support very practical tasks and are not designed to as marketing pieces. Let me know what you think!

by host

In this week’s support video blog post we learn the basic steps to verifying the connectivity between your computer and Microsoft Online. This support video walks us through network verification which includes insights into the Mac OSX and PC networking tools. For Mac OSX we learn how to use three tools including the Ping Utility, Traceroute Utility and the Nslookup Utility. For Windows computers we learn about the tracert Command, ping Command and how to validate the BPOS Path.

This support video then takes us through the steps of carrying out a Network Dump for both the PC and Mac. You can view all of these tips and tricks for network verification in the video below.

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I hope this video will help you better understand how to troubleshoot network verification. Learn more about Microsoft Online Services with our other support and how to blog posts.

What support videos would you like to see? We want to hear from you in the comments section below or send an email to our community mailbox. Follow us on Twitter and like our Facebook page.

by Brett

In this 8 minute webcast, Brett Hill of Advaiya Inc. demonstrates how you can easily setup a Live Meeting without leaving Outlook. The video also displays some of the capabilities of Live Meeting including desktop sharing, presenting PowerPoint decks and annotations during a meeting. This demo also discusses some of the ways you can use Live Meeting in your business.

You can learn more about BPOS with detailed walkthroughs in our How To section.

by host

It’s no secret that we feel strongly about our ability to lead the market for cloud productivity applications. So with every new customer that choses our services – big or small, in government, education or otherwise – it reinforces to us that we’re doing our job. Last week we announced the State of Minnesota as the first U.S. state to move to their e-mail and collaboration to the cloud with BPOS – all 33,000 employees. Today, we are excited to welcome a host of new companies and schools to the cloud. DuPont (a Fortune 500 company), Godiva (yes the chocolatier), Spotless Group (an Australian company in facilities and assets management) and Sunoco (a leading manufacturer of petro-chemical products) have joined the thousands of new BPOS customers. Also announced today is Volvo Car Corporation – based in Sweden, the company has decided to deploy BPOS for all 18,000 users to help drive productivity and keep costs down. In the last year, the number of businesses on BPOS has more than tripled, and while we’re always working to get better, we hope this endorsement means we’re getting a few things right.

Read more about DuPont, Spotless Group, Sunoco and Volvo here. Read Godiva Chocolatier’s case study here and how their migration from Lotus Notes to BPOS is saving them $250,000 annually. The company said something we are hearing a lot about these days - that employees are happier and more productive now that they can use familiar software like Office together with BPOS. You can also read more about the partner that helped Godiva and other BPOS customers with similar Notes-to-BPOS migrations – Binary Tree – in their special guest blog today.

In other cloud news, universities worldwide are going back to school this year with Live@edu, our cloud suite for students. School budgets are tight as ever, and with Live@edu, schools are saving money while still providing world-class technology. Universities announced today include a slew of California schools – San Francisco State University, Long Beach State University, California State Polytechnic University at Pomona, and the State Center Community College District – as well as University of Montana, Washington University in St. Louis, Northern Kentucky University (read case study here), College of DuPage and Aston University in the United Kingdom. Read more here about Aston’s decision to choose Live@edu over other cloud-based alternatives. Best of luck to these universities for a great school year, and welcome to Microsoft’s cloud!

Brett Hill

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