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Cloud Computing News & Analysis

Microsoft Reveals Office 2016 for the Enterprise #Conv15

Microsoft has finally put Office 2016 IT Pro and Developer into technical preview.

To be clear about this, this is not the first time glimpse of Office 2016. It was in private preview, so we knew quite a bit about it already.

But now we have the definitive word. At the Convergence conference in Atlanta today, Microsoft gave a clear outline of where it stands with Office 2016 and where it wants to go with it.

Microsoft's New BI Tool Plays Nice, Even With 3rd Party Vendors

If you haven’t at least experimented with Microsoft’s business intelligence visualization tool Power BI yet, now there are no excuses left.

Microsoft made many announcements during its Convergence conference in Atlanta this morning. They included news that the preview of Power BI is now being released worldwide to 140 markets.

Thinking of Moving to a Public Cloud? Think Again

The public cloud is more than 30 percent riskier than on-premises applications — and security concerns remain a strong barrier to cloud adoption.

Those are just two of the findings from a new Cloud Security Spotlight Survey (registration required) by Campbell, Calif.-based Bitglass.

The data security company surveyed more than 1,000 IT and IT security practitioners to assess the state of cloud in the enterprise.

It found a third of respondents have experienced more security breaches with the public cloud than with on-premises applications. In addition, 90 percent still express concern about public cloud security.

The report also exposed other interesting facts, including that there are greater fears about employee misuse and access control than malware and hacking. In addition, Microsoft is making big gains in the enterprise, pushing past Google as an email provider and challenging Salesforce as the cloud service of choice.

Three's a Cloud: Are You Using Too Many Cloud Providers?

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Go ahead: Try to avoid conversation about the cloud. Odds are it will be impossible.

The cloud has evolved from a buzzword to an enterprise essential. But most companies have embraced the cloud a little too enthusiastically, a new study from Telstra shows.

Telstra, an Australian telecommunications company, found a disconnect between cloud desires and realities. Specifically, more than seven out of 10 IT decision makers want to store all their data on a single cloud provider. But the majority instead use three vendors.

While more vendors theoretically reduce risks by creating redundancies, too many clouds — like too many cooks — spoil the soup of enterprise simplicity.

Discussion Point: Will File Sharing Replace Your ECM Solution?

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Enterprise File Sync and Share (EFSS) is a disruptive technology that burst into the information management space a few years ago.

Workers worldwide were quick converts because they were tired of the big, difficult-to-use proprietary enterprise content management systems (ECM).

As more workers started using EFSS, more and more analysts and vendors began to discuss the possible demise of ECM.

But is that really possible? Compared to ECM systems, EFSS has relatively little functionality.

Oh Please Cloudera: It's Not Game Over Yet

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You know the kid on the block who claims victory even though the game is still being played — and when you ask him why he thinks he’s won, his answer is “because I said so?"

It seems that Tom Reilly, CEO of Hadoop distro provider Cloudera, might have borrowed a play from that book, inspiring Gigaom’s Derrick Harris to write the headline, “Cloudera CEO declares victory over big data competition.”

And while some might conclude that Reilly was talking only about Pivotal — which open sourced its big data platform last month and is now partnering with Hortonworks on its HDP distro — there's more to the story. There are at least two other Hadoop distro providers in the space whose market share is still growing, perhaps as fast or even faster than Cloudera’s. Analysts like them just as much, if not more, too.

Microsoft Confirms 'Dramatic Refactoring' of Windows Server

During a Twitter-hosted tweet jam today, Microsoft’s lead architect for Windows Server, Jeffrey Snover, acknowledged what he called “crazy innovation” happening with his key product. In response to a question from CMSWire, Snover told the crowd that his team was “working on a dramatic refactoring of the server.”

Though Snover declined to provide many further details, the question involved a specific evolutionary path which both Snover and the jam’s co-host, Azure technical fellow Mark Russinovich, skillfully refrained from denying.

Microsoft may be steering Windows Server away from its traditional role as a provider of monolithic applications on a desktop — toward a radically different scheme much more similar to what’s being done in recent months with Linux and Docker.

HP Admits Defeat, Acquires Competitor Aruba Networks

HP today announced its intention to purchase Aruba Networks, its key competitor in the emerging field of wireless network manageability for smaller businesses, in an all-cash transaction deal valued at $3 billion in equity. The move brings easily the most innovative system for self-provisioning of wireless networks by non-professionals under the HP banner.

HP’s statement that the deal would provide it with tools that “complement” its existing product line, is a tacit admission that its 2014 effort to achieve parity with Aruba in this field was not all that successful.

A Primer on Cloud Options

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The question for most organizations today is not if they will be moving all or part of their business to the cloud, but when and how. Agility is the name of the game as the demands of an ever-growing global workforces become greater, and a move to the cloud just makes sense -- technologically and for the business.

The advantages of taking your business operations into the cloud have been well-documented: high levels of scalability, a decrease in IT costs and a mobile work environment that allows your employees to plug in and be productive from anywhere. For productivity, most businesses are choosing between two options -- Software as a Service (SaaS) and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) -- while some turn to Platform as a Service (PaaS) to create software that is then delivered over the Web.

So how should you decide as a business which setup is best for you? Let’s look at the options.

OpenText Digs into Analytics with B2B Network Integration

OpenText will be focusing a lot on analytics in the next few months, according to recent comments company Mark Barrenechea made in connection with the Actuate acquisition.

Last night, the Waterloo, Ontario-based software company lived up to that promise by announcing that it was adding analytics to its B2B integration network, Trading Grid. According to a statement from OpenText, the new analytics are for companies that are looking for deeper insight into their business processes and the ability to tweak those process with data rather than guesswork.

Google Joins the BYOD Party

For a while it seemed that Google was so busy getting geeky with glasses and driverless cars that it was blind to the big opportunity directly in front of it — bringing enterprise level security to the nearly 1 billion Android mobile devices that, in some way or another, are used on the job or for work purposes every day.

“For many, these phones have become essential tools to help us complete important work tasks like checking email, editing documents, reviewing sales pipelines and approving deals,” said Rajen Sheth, director of product management, Android and Chrome for Work at Google.

“But for the majority of workers, smartphones and tablets are underutilized in the workplace,” he added, noting that the business and innovation potential on these devices is for the most part, untapped.

And though Google initially spoke about separating work data and personal data on mobile devices at its I/O Conference last June, it didn’t make Android for Work available to the masses until now.

Legal Professionals Struggle With Poor Document Management

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New research from Workshare claims the legal industry is plagued by a greater than average share of document mismanagement and chaos.

The survey, based on responses from 220 legal professionals, shows that 78 percent are struggling to meet targets in spite of document and content management strategies to improve efficiencies.

10 Cloud Roadblocks and What to Do About Them

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As organizations face growing pressure to properly manage their digital content growth, cloud vendors have been marching out a series of improvements in an attempt to gain their favor. One such example is Microsoft’s recent announcement about achieving ISO 27018 and HITRUST compliance. Consumer cloud services are ubiquitous and cloud adoption is steadily climbing in the enterprise. Yet IT organizations still lack experience on how to approach cloud services.

IBM Promises a Better Hybrid Cloud at #IBMInterConnect

IBM is making its focus on the hybrid cloud clear at its InterConnect conference in Las Vegas this week.

Big Blue has already announced a series of initiatives, including new releases and new functionality around existing releases, along with news about multiple new data centers. It also revealed plans to move at least half of its cloud development team into is hybrid cloud computing business.

Embracing Change in the Digital Workplace

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Today we begin a new beat here at CMSWire: software-defined systems.  I know. Your marketing buzzword alarm has just sounded, and you may be wondering just how quickly you can reach for the Back button. 

But follow me a moment.  If you’re one of the many dozens of readers I’ve collected over the years, you know that I’ve never been one to swallow the bait — or more importantly, to pass it on to you so you’ll swallow it.

Up to now, technology publications have treated hardware and software as separate fields from one another, as different as geology from astronomy.  So the applications that businesses ran, such as content management systems, were believed to be of interest to a person unique from the one who buys the processors or rigs the network.

But something very important happened in the past five years:  The systems on which services such as the content management systems (CMS) ran moved from a hardware platform to a software platform.  Rather than processors running the CMS — or the enterprise resource planning (ERP), business process management (BPM), digital asset management (DAM) or customer relationship management (CRM) — new classes of processors sustain the software that runs the CMS.  That layer of software, made feasible by virtualization, is fluid, flexible and mobile. 

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