Transitioning Windows 7 devices to Windows 10 Modern Management with Windows Autopilot

My org is taking on the challenge of delivering a modern workspace to our user community . It will be good-bye to legacy Active Directory joined windows devices and excessive Group Policy that makes the user experience simply put – awful. Windows 10 is a modern operating system for a modern era with Windows as a Service delivering new features on a six monthly cadence that our user community should benefit from. Also, it’s not 1997 anymore, the combination of smart phone and tablet devices along with the injection of millennials into the work force means the user community is…

WaaS, WIP4Biz and Service Providers

So, this is the scenario – A company out there has started an RFP process around Digital Transformation. A number of parties have responded, but a shockingly low number have not mentioned Windows as a Service (WaaS) or Windows Insider for Business (WIP4Biz). Many still look to do the SOE Image with little to zero thought around how to service the Image going forward, as well as a continual improvement process leveraging Windows Insider for Business. Essentially, let’s just keep doing what we did with Windows XP, 7, 8.1 and apply it to Windows 10, collect the cheque and get…

That’s a Wrap!!

I’m sitting in Orlando airport awaiting the first of three two flights on my long journey back to New Zealand. It has been an incredible six days and I have so many memories that will be with me forever. UPDATE – It’s now two as my original flight broke down and I’m on the miracle flight – Orlando to LA to Auckland.  The Orlando flight is scheduled to land four minutes after the flight to Auckland begins boarding. First and foremost – there are two people who I want to thank. The first person is Dona Sarkar. Dona began scheming…

The Road to Microsoft Ignite

It’s Sunday evening… Normally I would be preparing for the week ahead, contemplating challenging tasks that lie ahead and making sure I have everything I need to be “the best I can be”.  Starting the week on the right foot for me is something I take pride in. I find tonight my mind drifting to the near future… 13 sleeps into the future to be precise. In 13 days, I depart these shores of Aotearoa on the journey of a lifetime. My destination – The Microsoft Ignite conference in Orlando, Florida. Not just an attendee, but a speaker! I still…

Windows Analytics – Why wouldn’t you…

I just launched Windows Analytics in my org, so while its fresh, I thought I’d write a bit about what I did. Windows Analytics is (in my opinion) a critical piece to any organisations Windows as a Service strategy and will complement how you can maintain Windows 10 while validating the applications in your organisation. Windows Analytics is a free solution from Microsoft (both the solution and the Azure Storage – Windows Analytics data is zero rated), so the only real cost is your time. Windows Analytics has three components that make up the solution, two are free to use,…

Deploying Office 365 ProPlus Insider in the Enterprise

Recently, I’ve been thinking about how I can help people in my organisation with the journey to Office 365 ProPlus (Monthly Channel), while still having confidence that their legacy applications that use the Office apps would still work, or at the very least, give them a little bit more time for our Business Systems teams to identify work arounds or contact application vendors for resolution. Enter the Office Insider program. As an active Windows Insider for many years, and an Office Insider on my home MacBook (Shhh, don’t tell the Microsoft gang I have a Mac too), it was time…

Windows 10 – Things to consider when transitioning to Windows 10 vNext

In my org, there has often been confusion (and some would say resistance) to the new Windows as a Service model introduced with Windows 10. Many are used to the legacy cadence of evaluating a new release of Windows several years after it’s released, with many not even considering an upgrade until the bell starts tolling on the Windows release (I’ve lived this since Windows NT 4.0, and many still recall that XP to 7 migration). I’m not going to write about how Windows as a Service works as there is a great overview here The one thing my org…

Windows Insider for Business – Doing the thing (Finally)

Late last week, I achieved the final two pieces of the #WIP4Biz puzzle at my org – Management Buy In and a meeting with the Infrastructure Team Lead and his Azure Engineer. The management buy in was reasonably easy due to my participation on the insider program in the org (more specifically the contacts made at Microsoft both here in Auckland and in Redmond). The combination of the recent two-year countdown to end of life for Window 7, and the greater awareness and understanding of what Windows as a Service also helped.  With Windows 10 now my orgs “standard” OS,…

Blog Neglect

One of my 2018 goals is to blog at the very least, one a week…  Here we are at the end of January and i’m not exactly achieving.  No excuses, although I do think that the chaos of the beginning of the school year is a pretty good one. The good news is that on that front, I am way more organised than I was in 2017.  School Stationery was ordered online weeks ago and arrived promptly.  Tonight was “the night of the book covering”.  Living the dream huh All, in all, i’m ready to continue with this year being my…

Back in the Fast Ring!!

After three weeks… I’m back in the fast ring!! Truth be told, I never really left and my other work machines, including the “Frank-in-800”, a seriously modified HP Z820 that was put together by stripping down and combining two HP Z800 and two HP Z820 workstations.  The “Frank-in-800” hosts my multiple lab environments.  Yes, even my lab runs on Windows Insider Fast Ring. The trouble all started just before Christmas.  A stack of new gear had just arrived as part of a small initiative – a tech refresh where a small group of people would be able to chose from a…