Microsoft

Join the Microsoft Launcher for Android Beta, Test 5.3.0 When Ready

Microsoft Launcher 5.3.0 is close to being on its way to testers and will include some new features and loads of fixes. Want to join the beta?  Go here: https://play.google.com/apps/testing/com.microsoft.launcher Here’s what 5.3.0 will bring: Time/Weather widget redesign- Now you can have multiple widgets in multiple sizes in multiple styles for multiple locations! Also, check out the updated and more detailed L2 page with an hourly and 10-day forecast. UX refinements to the Home Screen, Dock and Search widget Tasks card now supports “My Day” and “Flagged Emails” from Microsoft To Do News tab now supports “Technology” as a news interest Font type changed from Segoe UI to Roboto Work profile customers can now get access to their work apps Beta commu...

Learn About MSIX Starting March 28 in a Two-part Web Series

I’m happy to announce I’m part of an upcoming effort to help educate the masses on Microsoft’s new MSIX technology. For those that have worked with Windows Installer (MSI) technology in the past, MSIX is similar in many ways. But, what MSIX does now (or is intended to ultimately do) is to bring new capabilities for software packaging and deployment to a world where MSI just isn’t enough anymore. The goal of MSIX is to modernize software packaging and deployment and make it cloud-capable across multiple platforms – not just Windows. Are we there yet? Are all these features available today? I guess if I started answering all these questions, you have very little reason to join our web series starting on March 28th! We held a similar event a few months back and i...

Tip: Building a Modern Desktop Deployment and Management Lab Kit

Microsoft provides a free full lab kit full of trial software to allow customers to plan, text, and validate modern desktops. Download from here: Modern Desktop Deployment and Management Lab Kit What’s included: Windows 10 Enterprise, Version 1809 Windows 7 Office 365 ProPlus, Version 1901 System Center Configuration Manager, Version 1802 Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit for Windows 10, Version 1809 Microsoft Deployment Toolkit Microsoft Application Virtualization (App-V) 5.1 Microsoft BitLocker Administration and Monitoring 2.5 SP1 Windows Server 2016 Microsoft SQL Server 2014 The kit contains a step-by-step lab guide to help customer walk through various scenarios.

Microsoft Puts the Nail in the Coffin for Its Health Apps, Services, and Hardware

Microsoft Health Dashboard users today can join Microsoft Band and Microsoft Phone users in a silent dirge. Microsoft today has announced the final end of its foray into Health services. Delivered in an End of Support FAQ, the company has outlined what to expect as its shuts down all services shortly. On 5/31/2019, the Microsoft Health Dashboard site will be shut down and Microsoft Band applications will be removed from the Microsoft Store, Google Play, and Apple App store.  The FAQ goes on to give recommendations on how to secure data archives before the May 31 cutoff date – because once that date hits, nothing will and, according to the announcement, everything will be DELETED. There’s only one small glimmer of hope, and that’s for specific Band users. According to the ...

Microsoft Build Registration Opens, Runs May 6-8 in Seattle

For those developing applications and services for the Microsoft ecosystem, the company’s developer conference, Build, runs May 6-8 in Seattle, WA. There’s not a year goes by recently when Microsoft’s strategy changes in major ways, making this conference a must-attend annual event. This year will be even more interesting as Microsoft is moving even further away from Windows and deeper into its current revenue streams Azure and Office. Registration is now open. Those interested in attending can register at this link: https://register.build.microsoft.com/ Full conference Price: $2395.00 (does not include hotel) The full site is here: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/build  

Office 2019: The last of the dated Offices?

Continuing the typical cadence of Office releases, Office 2019 comes 3 years on the heels of Office 2016 (which followed from 2013, which followed from 2010, and 2007 and 2003 and so it goes). Office 2019 didn’t hit with a bang (nor a whimper) but somewhat of a ‘meh’ due in part to the fact that most of the features that would typically be viewed as “new” and “exciting” were already available in the subscription-based flavors of Office that come with Office 365 subscriptions.  The only reason one would buy Office 2019 would be to pay a one-time fee and avoid the subscription.  Unfortunately, that would mean new features released to subscribers would not be coming to Office 2019 users.  Some aren’t too concerned over that because they wonder &...

Microsoft Virtual Academy to See Next Shutdown Milestone in April 2019

Late in 2018, Microsoft began warning its customers that the company will begin shutting down its Virtual Academy site. Microsoft Virtual Academy (MVA) offers free IT training for Developers, IT Pros, Data Scientists, and students. To simplify your tech training journey, we are consolidating our learning resources and retiring Microsoft Virtual Academy in phases, beginning on January 31, 2019. January 31, 2018, has come and gone already, and some of the content is already available at the company’s replacement site, Microsoft Learn. However, the company seems to have extended the cut-off date for completing courses… To simplify your tech training journey, we are consolidating our learning resources and retiring Microsoft Virtual Academy in phases, with the next phase finishing ...

Microsoft Consolidates SQL Server Technical Content into a Single Support Blog

Microsoft teams are continuing to consolidate its resources and efforts and participate solely in a couple areas. For documentation, there’s the Docs platform (docs.microsoft.com). For community, it’s the Tech Community web site (techcommunity.microsoft.com). The latest team to begin migrating content is the SQL Server support team. We are excited to announce the launch of the new SQL Server Support blog and welcome you to this space. This blog space will focus on deep technical content related to the SQL Server product and features. The content of this blog will come from experts in the support team who provide troubleshooting guidance and advice to SQL Server customers. Bookmark this link: https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/SQL-Server-Support/bg-p/SQLServerSupport RSS fee...

Microsoft Will Begin Shutting Down Microsoft Virtual Academy on January 31, 2019

Microsoft in 2018 announced a new learning endeavor called Microsoft Learn. And, in doing so, the company also has to shut down its old method of learning to avoid confusion and duplication. Microsoft Virtual Academy will begin the shutdown procedure on January 31, 2019, with full shutdown later in 2019. Microsoft recommends that anyone with unfinished MVA courses should identify those and finish them before the January 31, 2019 date. This is the cutoff date for completing courses. Check your MVA Dashboard frequently for courses you have started that are retiring. To earn your certificates of completion, be sure to finish any courses by January 31, 2019.

Microsoft Rebrands Virtual Academy, Launches Microsoft Learn Platform

Microsoft has launched Microsoft Learn, a free learning site that the company is touting as a new approach to learning. The skills required to advance your career and earn your spot at the top do not come easily. Now there’s a more rewarding approach to hands-on learning that helps you achieve your goals faster. Earn points, levels, and achieve more! The content focuses on modern technology – essentially, Azure and related applications that run on Azure. You can adopt a learning path as a developer, administrator, or business user and the site will build your learning path for you. Modules generally run around 45 minutes. Microsoft is promising additional content, and starting out with close to 90 modules. The web site: Microsoft Learn Looking for an awesome, no-nonsense technical co...

Microsoft Gets Closer to Being the Technology Service Provider for Everyone

Many smaller organizations just don’t have the time or resources to manage the technology needed to run the company’s business. Along with Azure and Office 365, Microsoft is now moving into the full managed provider space with its Microsoft Managed Desktop. Today, we are announcing Microsoft Managed Desktop (MMD), a new initial offering that brings together Microsoft 365 Enterprise, device as a service, and cloud-based device management by Microsoft. MMD enables customers to maximize their IT organizations’ focus on their business while Microsoft manages their modern desktops. Microsoft’s ultimate goal here, though, is to become the service provider (much like your electric and sewage providers) for all companies. Believe it. This has been a goal for over a decade and the...

Cortana Stops Tracking Packages?

UPDATE: Microsoft has since replied with the following… We are constantly evaluating and finessing the Cortana experience to offer users the most valuable features and capabilities. For package tracking ease, Outlook will continue to manage your package tracking emails, and create events in your calendar with details. So, Microsoft has indeed disabled this functionality. Original article… Its not clear whether its because of the new Alexa integration, or something else, but Cortana has lost the ability to track your package deliveries for some people. Confirmed by others, if you go into the Cortana Notebook and choose the Packages service under Manage Skills, it now indicates that this feature is no longer available. Some, though, have looked and stated that Cortana is still tr...