Another “End of Life” extension

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, pressure has mounted in the tech industry to extend support for various products and services.  One major announcement having to do with email using Exchange Online is that basic authentication will be phased out in late 2021 instead of its originally scheduled October 2020 date.

Although basic authentication is much less secure than other methods available, it is obvious IT departments around the world are dealing with much more important items (including yours truly) at this time and most likely welcome this news.

Check out the full post from Microsoft here for the full scoop!

Office 365 is becoming Microsoft 365!

After spending much time learning the differences between the two, now Microsoft has decided to drop this on us!  I’m sure this won’t be confusing at all…(cue the sarcasm).

As shown on Microsoft’s website here

Office 365 is becoming Microsoft 365

New name, same great value, same price.

Don’t worry-you don’t need to do a thing. Your product services, apps, and features will stay the same, along with the price. Your subscription name will update automatically in the admin center and your monthly billing statements on or after April 21, 2020.

1) Office 365 Business Essentials    is now   Microsoft 365 Business Basic

2) Office 365 Business Premium     is now   Microsoft 365 Business Standard

3) Microsoft 365 Business is now   Microsoft 365 Business Premium

4) Office 365 Business         is now   Microsoft 365 Apps for business

5) Office 365 ProPlus           is now   Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise

Windows 10 bug affects remote work

According to ZDNet.com, Microsoft has acknowledged that a bug within their Windows 10 operating system is affecting Office 365, Microsoft Teams, and Outlook…three major aspects necessary in order to be effective working from home.

They hope to have a fix in place by the beginning of next month if not sooner; hopefully this doesn’t have too much of an effect on remote users which is pretty much everyone at this point!

Check out the full post here for more!

COVID-19 and working from home

 

Just came across a great article by Susan Bradley from Askwoody.com who does an awesome job of explaining the challenges that come with being forced to work from home.  My two main takeaways is 1) how will businesses meet the challenge of making this as convenient as possible for its workers and 2) how will workers be able to balance this new normal given that school-aged children are also home bound as well and need to meet their educational goals?

Check out the full article here for more details!

Verizon joins the free data party! (finally)

In order to help customers impacted by the coronavirus epidemic, the company will be giving an additional 15GB of data for free.

Whether you’re a regular consumer or a small business, you’ll be allowed to take advantage of this offer between March 25 and April 30.  As a Verizon subscriber, I greatly appreciate this however I wish that they would have jumped on the bandwagon much earlier and extend it for a longer period of time.

For more info on this, check out the post from Appleinsider.com here.

Windows 10 version 1709 EOL delayed

As a result of the Coronavirus epidemic grasping the world at this time, Microsoft has announced via blog post that its decided to continue supporting version 1709 of Windows 10 (Enterprise/Education editions only) for an additional six months, extending its life until October 13 of this year.

A important note is that the following month, version 1803 will reach end of life on November 10 which makes you wonder if Microsoft will push back all of the other versions for an additional amount of time.  Also, I wonder if this epidemic will sway Microsoft to even consider supporting Windows 7 and Server 2008/2008 R2 which hit EOL on January 14th.  Just a thought…

Devices running Windows 10 hits one billion

A tidbit worth mentioning…after almost five years of being available to the masses, Microsoft has claimed that its Windows 10 operating system is actively running on one billion devices during any given month.

This is different from when Microsoft claimed a year or so back that it was installed on one billion total devices.

Check out Microsoft’s press release here for more info!

Free remote tools being offered amid Coronavirus

Just came across a useful post at Bleepingcomputer.com revealing how many companies are offering their remote support tools free for a limited time given how Coronavirus is gripping the world and is forcing the employees of many corporations and small businesses to have to work remotely.

Microsoft, Google, LogMeIn (my remote support tool), and Cisco are leading the way in offering their products.  Check out the full post here for more details and let me know if you plan on taking advantage of these resources!

The “new” Office App

For those mobile Office users, the news that Microsoft has developed an integrated app that saves space on your device in addition to providing the same or even more productivity has to be a welcomed development.

I’ve tested out the app for the past few days and must say that I’m impressed with its performance.  While it is a disappointment that it only includes Word, Excel, and PowerPoint (no integrated Outlook, OneNote, etc.) it is definitely a step in the right direction in that its performance is much improved in comparison to the traditional (and “clunky”) standalone mobile apps.

For more details about the new Office App, check out Gregg Keizer’s article on Computerworld.com here and let me know if you’ve taken the plunge and experimented with the app!

A closer look at the Modern Desktop

The latest buzz throughout the IT industry is about the ever changing landscape of its future, namely the shifting of all things towards cloud computing.

As more resources get redirected to the cloud, what does that mean for the average end user?  On the surface, you may think “mot much” but when you take a deep dive into the topic at hand, it is quickly realized that the expectations for productivity can increased being that whatever devices that are assigned to them can be managed and monitored at all times.

For a more detailed explanation, Paul Schnackenburg did a masterful job here in breaking down this shift towards what is now called the “Modern Desktop” along with its pros and cons on how it can and will affect us going forward…