Microsoft

Could it be that it has been a whole year since I posted anything about my competition in Redmond? I guess I hadn't really consciously realized that I had moved away from the competitive battle here on the blog, but there has been so much going on at IBM that there hasn't been a need to distract wit...

Two years ago, I switched to a MacBook Pro as my business desktop. A year later, I added an iPad. My mobile device during this whole time has been some flavor of Blackberry. In our home, we have an iMac, MacBook Air, an iPhone, two iPods, and wii. On my desktops, I use Lotus Symphony productivity to...

A whole blog entry and seven-minute video justifying why Microsoft believes that rip-and-replace migrations are the only way to move from Exchange version to version. A fascinating explanation of why this approach is necessary in order to write new features, take advantage of hardware, and to adapt...

I found this via one of my news alerts over the weekend; the slideshow on ITBusinessEdge apparently is the visual companion to a Quest Software whitepaper of the same title. In an attempt to demonstrate that SharePoint 2010 is a more-suitable target for migrating Notes applications than previous Mi...

I found this article to be a useful summary of the executive suite mudwrestling that seems to be taking place at Microsoft, and why Ray Ozzie's farewell memo is a pretty nice kiss-off from a place that seems to want to stick to the past rather than innovate for the future:Investors worrying about Oz...

Over the last two days of my travels, I've been asked the same question in three different settings: In today's market, why should an organization choose IBM Lotus over Microsoft? Even with everything we know about the competitive landscape, when forced to boil it down to a short answer, I've give...

Burton Group's Guy Creese tells it like it is...Microsoft's 2010 software suites present "the most complicated lock-in decision in years," and many customers will be justified in sticking with the 2007 versions of Office, Exchange and SharePoint, Burton Group analysts said this week at the Catalyst...

The Register reports on Microsoft's approach to winning customers to BPOS versus Google and, presumably, Notes/Domino or LotusLive. The tactics described explain a lot. In my personal opinion, this approach to business is way beyond "SPIFs" and even beyond "bounties". And while the article discus...

Then, April 23, 2009:Blockbuster embraced software plus services by deploying Microsoft Online Services to update the undependable and outdated Lotus Notes environment while minimizing costs and impact to end users.Now, CNET, July 3, 2010: Exactly what Blockbuster's future will look like is anyone'...

Good to see that Microsoft really understands the concepts of 24/7 availability and system redundancy in 2010. Apparently, they've decided none of their MSDN bloggers need to be on the air for a full week!This week, Microsoft is upgrading their MSDN blogging platform. For the next week, bloggers wi...

With this week's launch of Office 2010 and SharePoint 2010, it's no surprise that the mainstream press is trying to figure out the prognosis for these Microsoft products. This article in the Seattle Times discusses how Microsoft has grown SharePoint into a billion dollar business. Which, well, if...

Anyone who is surprised by any of this should check their history books...Although Microsoft's Office Open XML (OOXML) document format became an ISO standard two years ago, the company still hasn't built any software that truly complies with the standard. Microsoft Office 2010, which is expected to...

eWeek is "reporting" a "story" today based on Microsoft's rebuttals to the "Top 10 Exchange storage myths" (forgive my air quotes on all of this, but it's hard to believe eWeek considers this news). Their source is the Exchange team blog, and I think it's a clever blog entry. I just don't like t...

147% vs. 29%

March 1 2010

A few people have pinged me today about Microsoft's new competitive website, which can be reached via the classy-looking "Why Microsoft" blog written by andrewk (doesn't that anonymity make you feel better about doing business with Microsoft already?). On the new site, Microsoft has done a clever j...

Another prime example of how in the Microsoft world that Microsoft giveth with one hand and taketh with the other...Everything else about the Exchange 2010 storage story pushes the costs of high availability down--it's possible to use commodity hardware (SATA in some cases), no SAN, no RAID, etc. Bu...

I think I'm not allowed to quote LinkedIn discussions from membership groups in public, but there are some real quotable comments in this thread. The original poster basically asks for experiences with Notes to Exchange migration. Most of the reply comments say, essentially, don't do it -- you won...

I couldn't help but laugh when I saw Microsoft's "explanation" today of IBM's recent win announcement regarding Panasonic. Microsoft claims that only 4% of Panasonic was using Exchange Server, and claims that IBM was just keeping a Notes customer. I was surprised the blog entry wasn't written by...

I'm not sure what language this job posting is written in:If you’re looking for a new role where you’ll focus on one of the biggest issues that is top of mind for KT and Steve B in “Compete”, build a complete left to right understanding of the subsidiary, have a large amount...

Much as Microsoft loves to poke at IBM for having different businesses that sometimes are in conflict with each other, they are apparently suffering similar problems. While on the one hand desiring ISVs such as IBM to quickly support Windows 7, Microsoft is simultaneously allowing their technical l...

Engineering problem or excuse?Finally I do want to update all on one other piece of feedback we have received - allowing the in place upgrade of the operating system under Exchange. Technically the work required to provide this capability is consistent with the work we would need to do to support a...

I'm not paranoid, there has always been a basis for the way I view the competitive market...and every so often, written, supporting documentation comes along:Its time for a decision on iShellBrowser. This is a tough decision. ...It is hard to know how much actual market benefit iShellBrowser integr...

I am returning to work tomorrow (Tuesday) after a couple of weeks off for parenting leave. During that time, I've read some interesting content without time to blog it. This particular link, from Forrester's ZDNet blog last month, seems like a good way to ease back into things. What strikes me ab...

From the comments on this article from last week, I can see that it was visible somewhere in the Lotus community... a number of you stepping in to call into question the economics and the simplification of the author's message. Putting aside that an article about Exchange 2010 starts with the thoug...

Balanced article from Computerworld exploring the truth or the stretching of it as it pertains to SharePoint sales and deployment:"So there's no question that in the early days, SharePoint's 'momentum' was illusory. Many people were getting the Core CAL, and almost accidentally getting SharePoint CA...

LMAO:Technology companies must pursue constant market expansion and diversity to stay alive and relevant, according to Mr. Ballmer. ... "I.B.M.'s footprint is more narrow today than it was when I started. I am not sure that has been to the long-term benefit of their shareholders." ... I.B.M.'s str...

I don't think it gets any clearer than this:Lotus Software GM Bob Picciano has grown tired of the "hot wind" blowing out of Redmond carrying claims that Exchange is displacing Notes and is singling out CEO Steve Ballmer and COO Kevin Turner as the main culprits spreading "ridiculous and fabricated"...

I bet someone is going to regret this phrasing...Microsoft late Tuesday warned of "massive disruptions" to sales of Office, as well as to partners such as Best Buy, Dell and Hewlett-Packard, if the injunction that prevents it from selling Word 2003 and Word 2007 in the U.S. after Oct. 10 is not set...

I do have some cool blogs about Lotus stuff coming up, but I have to put the coda on some of the competitive discussions this week. A few weeks, ago, Microsoft's COO Kevin Turner said:We're going to have countries this year -- I'm going to give an award next week to some countries that have complet...

This speaks for itself on so many levels.As for IBM, [Microsoft managing director Mteto Nyati] said: "We need to make sure the customers of IBM are liberated from Lotus Notes. Just by moving across they will feel so liberated, and start enjoying things like unified communications. I would li...

Last week, I wrote an open letter to Ferris Research and Microsoft, in which I showed that the particular Ferris Research report being referenced by Microsoft didn't support their conclusion that "Notes systems can cost twice as much as Exchange 2007". Well, after a number of escalations on differe...

I can remember quite specifically when we added mood stamps to Lotus Notes -- and it was before anything in Outlook 97. Yet the patent filing that was initially approved in 2006 seems to have gone final this week:This week just past Microsoft was successfully granted a patent for "emotiflags" despi...

Been an interesting week for competition in the messaging and collaboration market. A few items worth looking at. On the Google front -- you know, I'm glad that they and their partners are getting a little more aggressive in going after the Notes space, because all that does is bring out the real...

Those wacky Microsoft salespeople are at it again, taking a regular play out of their playbook for recycling as they try to close those last "Notes Compete wins" in order to stay employed. Desperate times call for desperate measures, so twice today, I've been asked to "prove" that 8.x is not the la...

Interesting times...Other evidence is coming directly, and loudly, from Microsoft, which is offering planning advice that has never been clearer. At TechEd, keynote presenter Bill Veghte, senior vice president for the Windows business, said companies testing Vista should stop and move to testing W...

I'm sorry to hear that David Killingsworth has been laid off. It was so refreshing to read someone cut through the hype and document the challenges of a Notes to Exchange migration:-When migrating to Microsoft, keep an eye on the cost of additional hardware, the cost of SQL server licenses, and the...

Carl pointed to Microsoft's announcement of Exchange 2010 beta:Exchange 2010 will help organizations reduce costs, protect communications and delight e-mail users with capabilities to do the following: * Lower costs with more flexible deployment and management options. * Protect information and mee...

Remember Unify? They're the company that moved into the market for migrating away from Notes and has had little to show for it. Heck, their latest quarterly financial report doesn't even mention their Lotus Notes migration efforts. But apparently, they haven't quite given up yet. Shout-out to ma...

Deliberate attempt to cause market confusion? From Redmond? That would never happen.Over the weekend, I received information about what appears to be the new Microsoft server product recently preannounced by CEO Steve Ballmer. Steve revealed the new software during a Feb. 24 meeting with financia...

The Notes Migration Blog has been running for eighteen months, documenting a real-world migration from Lotus Notes to Microsoft SharePoint. Yesterday, the author posted what appears to be his/her ultimate chapter. In the final episode, after a year and a half of actually doing what a lot of the hy...

Yes, Microsoft senior vice president says it that bluntly in the pages of Forbes.com today:The behemoth of Redmond, Wash., is methodically rolling out business software that's sold as an online service. There's a very compelling reason: For Microsoft, selling software-as-a-service means more revenue...

Articles about Exchange 14 have been trickling out for the last six or eight weeks, but every one is more confusing than the last. Today's CNET article from Ina Fried continues the double-talk. Microsoft continues to say things like"If you walk by the site of a skyscraper under construction, it lo...

A tweet from Tom Duff alerted me to this new report:Microsoft SharePoint has captured the ECM market's attention. While some may argue that SharePoint is not a panacea and is perhaps being over-used, many organizations around the world are reportedly using it for one or more ECM-related projects. C...

CIO has run two articles in a pro versus con formula about using Microsoft Outlook for e-mail. While it's nice to see point/counter-point, both articles start from the premise that Outlook is the only corporate e-mail client. Um, I -- and 40% of the market -- beg to differ. Considering that CIO h...

In response to one of the point-counterpoint of the pre-Lotusphere spoiler articles, an anonymous customer leaves the following comment:I work for a 15k+ organization, and we stopped our migration to Exchange, in part because of the costs to migrate, but also because we found out we could save money...

An anonymous blogger has been writing for over a year about his company's transition from IBM Lotus to Microsoft. It's been clear from the writing that the decision was political, that the migration has run into hurdles of overpromised impossibilities, and that it's just plain way more complicated...

Looking like the tough stretch for Redmond continues...Microsoft has been sued by a small Wisconsin business for allegedly misrepresenting the capabilities of its Live Communications Server product, selling the company more licenses than it needed and not providing a refund or other products to solv...

Ferris's Nick Shelness cuts through the hype on Microsoft's Exchange Online announcement and its reality as applied to Notes customers:The November 17 announcement of Microsoft Exchange Online included a case study in which a company migrated away from Notes using Microsoft Exchange Online. This is...

Lots of people have sent me links to news coverage of Microsoft's official announcement yesterday of Microsoft Online, including their hosted Exchange offering. I was especially interested in Tom Foremski's view on ZDNet, because he sees it for what it isRon Markezich, corporate VP of Microsoft Onl...

Microsoft announced Small Business Server 2008 and Essential Business Server 2008 earlier today. The emphasis of their press release seems to be about saving time and money, displaying a good grasp of their marketing 101 lessons:They are designed and priced to help customers save money and compete...

Professionals at migration

October 30 2008

With a contact e-mail address like this, I guess we can tell what their professional stance regarding Lotus Notes is: Oddly, nothing much on their website about this service -- I found the presentation through a Google ad which leads you to a page titled "Removing the asbestos of software". I g...

Via Julian and Keith, I've been pointed to a SharePoint community blog that offers up a SharePoint Price Calculator. While you can quarrel with the inclusion of some of the individual line items, and some customers could argue that they already own some of the pieces, it's a very simple way to see...

Cold call from Unify

October 6 2008

A lot of people have been looking for me through various connection methods today, so when my phone showed a series of incoming calls via my published IBM phone number, I eventually broke down and answered it. On the other end, calling through the central IBM phone number, was "Drew" from Unify. I...

CMSWatch has been a solid dose of SharePoint reality all year, and now comes in with a strong reality check:Almost everyone licenses SharePoint at some level within their organization, almost everyone already uses legacy ECM systems. Almost no-one is planning replace these legacy systems with ShareP...

Effective press training...I asked Rashid how he expects Microsoft Research New England to contribute to the company. "I have no idea," he answered. "If I knew, then we wouldn't really need it."Then there's the imitation-as-sincerest-form, from Microsoft's press release:"As part of the core mission...

At the recent Microsoft partner conference (earlier this month in Houston), the Exchange team highlighted the "momentum" around Exchange 2007. We must have different definitions of "momentum", though. In highlighting this supposed "momentum", Microsoft's presentation claimed that "Notes/Domino win...

It appears that Avanade has decided to try to counter some comments from my blog entry last week about their parent company, Accenture. The bio-less "KevinB", whose blog does not allow comments, writes:Accenture is, and remains in my opinion, one of the best examples of a well executed, enterprise...

One of the most interesting, but slightly uncomfortable, parts of presenting at the Lotus Top Gun training class in São Paulo this week was leading a competitive discussion with a very recently ex-Microsoft sales guy in the room. While everything I present in that section is based on publicly-avail...

I haven't blogged about the OOXML saga for several months. For one, the politics leading to the ISO vote were wearing thin on me. For another, once Microsoft announced ODF support, I felt like the issue of OOXML's future was far less interesting. But as Nathan Freeman pointed out to me yesterday,...

A few weeks ago, Microsoft employees started making various claims about a specific look at market share on the blogs and elsewhere. Volker Weber decided to challenge the claim, putting up a wiki as a in-public-view way of determining the accuracy of those MS claims. Very quickly, it became appare...

Via Duffbert, I just had an interesting read of the transcript from Unify Corp.'s 2008 year-end earnings call. Unify, as you may recall, is the company whose migration product from Notes to Microsoft, Composer, was aggressively marketed to SearchDomino subscribers from December 2007 until a few mon...

On the occasion when a high-profile customer migrates from Notes to Exchange, there are often a lot of eyes watching to see if the migration is successful, and solves all the world's problems as was promised during the courting phase. Vince quotes a Philips (internal?) message which suggests using...

...Microsoft's TechEd progresses. There's a session on the agenda about migrating from Notes/Domino to the Microsoft unified communications platform. I'm obviously not there to see it -- too bad, as I understand I've been mentioned by name and some of my slides from Lotusphere have been used. It...

It's hard to tell where the next chapter in the OOXML saga is going, and how relevant it is now that MS has announced their plans to ship both ODF support and OOXML-as-ratified in a later Office 2007 version...Venezuela and India have appealed against the official ratification of Microsoft's Office...

Bob Sutor is referecing an SD Times article which indicates that Microsoft is planning to support the ISO-approved Open Document Format 1.1 and join the OASIS technical committee. Wow. As I run out the door to the airport, I wanted to at least capture the news. This is a validation and big win...

It's an interesting sort of reaction when a list of "annoying software" comes out and your product is not on it, to the surprise of many...and even more surprising, the product that for years, we were told that all those end users prefer is.Then there's Microsoft's Outlook. Things have been getting...

IntranetBlog reports on a presentation by Shawn Shell, who wrote the CMSWatch "SharePoint Report 2008". Shawn Shell, CEO of Consejo, and author of CMS Watch's The SharePoint Report 2008 from CMS Watch, accurately summarizes SharePoint in one telling quote during his SharePoint presentation at Enterp...

Anyone surprised?In a blog posting this week, Alex Brown, leader of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) group in charge of maintaining the Office Open XML (OOXML) standard, revealed that Microsoft Office 2007 documents do not meet the latest specifications of the ISO OOXML draft...

They managed to make it happen. IS29500 has passed, and Microsoft now has an ISO standard in Open XML. Clearly, I'm disappointed in this outcome. Microsoft's publicly-stated attitude of "standards are great, let's have more of them!" did not and does not make sense in the space where there are a...

I think this may be the first time I've linked to the Notes Migration Blog. This blog, started six months ago, is written anonymously by an IT person going through a Notes to SharePoint migration. While I don't know who the author is, at some point, jonvon vouched for him/her, so I consider it wor...

Long-time blog readers know that I love to examine conspiracy and deception, especially when it comes to a certain competitor. This week, I've already commented once on the OOXML thing...was hoping that would be enough for one week, especially as my comments were picked up by eWeek, CNET, and other...

Over the weekend, Microsoft published another public effort to show "hey, we're the good guys" on their efforts to take a heavily modified version of the Office 2007 document formats and get it rubber-stamped as an international standard. Oddly, the open letter from Chris Capossela asserts that IBM...

I opined the other day that the drama around the OOXML process had reached dizzying heights of spin coming out of last week's Geneva meeting. The Microsoft partisans celebrated the meeting as a huge success, which struck me as odd, until I remembered that Microsoft also issued a press release claim...

Glad to see someone willing to cry foul on Mr. Gates, who has had a habit of public data interpretation that is just a bit outside reality....Given that a SharePoint license for an end-user is included with ("bundled with") the Enterprise CAL, Microsoft would like everyone to think that licenses sol...

Yet another chapter in the tale of Microsoft products tied too tightly together...here comes the next fork lift...Users planning to run Microsoft Exchange on Windows Server 2008 and those contemplating in-place upgrades of the new server operating system coming out next week may face installation pr...

In case anyone thought this was just an IBM vs. MS thing...After further technical analysis of the specification along with all the additional data available on OOXML, Google believes OOXML would be an insufficient and unnecessary standard, designed purely around the needs of Microsoft Office. We j...

Lots of news about OOXML last week, in the lead up to the ISO ballot resolution meeting later this month. Ars Technica and others cover news reported in Friday's Wall Street Journal, that the EU is apparently investigating the OOXML standardization process:European regulators have now decided to ex...

Julian notes the rhetoric in the latest chapter of the Microsoft OOXML saga...It seems that Microsoft is attempting to turn the whole debate around ODF vs OOXML into a schoolyard you-can't-be-my-friend-if-you-want-to-be-his-friend argument, by characterising the entire debate as a side-with-Microsof...

If my computer were a slot machine, the number of pings I just received about this blog entry would have meant hitting the jackpot. Some very interesting criticisms of Outlook, including some from Outlook 2007:Outlook frustrated the hell out of me when I began using it a year ago, so I started keep...

A Silicon Valley startup called Teneros closed a $40 million series D financing today, led by Advanced Equities. That brings the total raised since the company was founded to $84.5 million ... What I find ironic about this funding, and indeed this company, is that it is built entirely on the flaws...

In my Lotusphere summary last week, I discussed a challenge around my identity as a sales manager versus being a blogger. Charles Robinson and others suggested a path forward, saying that if I blog more about the day-to-day kind of activities I work on, it might help create a more complete picture...

At least the headline calls the effort for what it is:After its first attempt to have Office Open XML (OOXML) approved as an International Organization for Standardization (ISO) standard failed in September, the software giant has spared no expense to ensure that it succeeds at the ballot resolution...

Two disconnected sentences

January 29 2008

Last week, early Monday morning, Microsoft issued their annual Lotusphere spoiler press release. This was quickly overshadowed by a great Lotusphere conference, and the few comments I received about the MS "news" were highly critical. People told me it made Microsoft look "desperate", "pathetic",...

OK, let's get this one out of the way first... This morning, Microsoft issued their annual Lotusphere spoiler release. And I honestly laughed out loud when I saw that headline, because it is the same headline for the Lotusphere spoiler release in 2006 and 2007. Does anyone not see the irony in...

On a day when Microsoft would probably like to be celebrating the next step in their uphill battle to make the Office 2007 formats an international standard, instead they get this:After nearly a decade of anti-trust battles between the European Commission and Microsoft, it is finally time for the re...

Been expecting this one...MOSS enters the valley of disappointment SharePoint will continue to grow at viral rates as a low cost, low touch, document collaboration system. But in 2008 we will see the start of a noticeable backlash, particularly among larger enterprises. The backlash will be two-fo...

This story is getting a lot of play over the last 24 hours, as Microsoft uses a service pack (!) to turn off support for various non-current MS file formats in Office:You might not have noticed it yet, but the recent service pack 3 release for Microsoft Office 2003 contains a hidden "feature" -- it...

Perception is reality

December 17 2007

Earlier today, I had some time to review some interesting regional market research. I'm not sure if or how much of this can be shared publicly, but I'm going to try anyway. This research talked to a decent number of Microsoft customers, and was conducted last quarter. Among the many questions...

Then and now...

December 9 2007

Then, September, 2005:CompUSA has become one of the best-known retailers of computers and electronics in the United States through rapid expansion of its "superstores" across the country. For years the company relied on Lotus Notes for communicating with store managers. However, the large volumes of...

Several people sent me links to the two Paul Murphy blog entries about the State of Illinois decision to standardize on Exchange 2003 and Office 2003. In part, this is obviously "local interest" to me as an Illinoisan. But it is also interesting because of the way Paul dissects the decision-making...

From an e-mail today:I was just in a Microsoft presentation where our company's decision makers were told that the Microsoft share in email has grown from 52% to 86% here in the [sub-region of the USA], and that while companies are constantly converting "from Notes to Exchange" there has nev...

A few days ago, a partner forwarded along a non-confidential e-mail from Microsoft announcing their new "Notes Transition Partner Program (NTPP)", which is also found on their website. Could it be, that after three failed attempts to run a Notes platform migration effort, they'd really try again?...

OK let's make it clear this time... I am not slamming Microsoft. But someone else is, and I happen to think it's provocative. Perhaps this would even explain my attitude at times. Nathan asks some questions:Microsoft has $29 billion dollars in cash. They reported record profits this past quart...

It's been a bad two weeks, really, for Redmond...One day, we may look back on Sept. 17 as the official beginning of the end for Microsoft's dominance. Two separate events signaled the shift; one was the European Union court's harsh ruling against Microsoft itself, charging that the world's No. 1 sof...

From the "we just don't do that" department...Microsoft has been noticeably quiet whenever we bloggers/press folk ask them for comments on Google various announcements. Today's CapGemini-Google partnership to sell Google Apps Premier Edition (GAPE) must have struck a nerve, as Microsoft sent out a l...

Michael Vizard, editorial director of Ziff Davis Enterprise, tells it like it is:Within the land of IT, nothing is a bigger pain to own, manage and run than Microsoft Exchange. Everywhere you go customers have horror stories about the installation, maintenance and, above all, uptime of their Microso...

The OOXML debate has been covered in the press frequently, but when it gets outside of the industry weeklies, you know that something smells pretty rotten. Even the Wall Street Journal and Financial Times had articles last week. With today being the deadline for countries to submit their votes, Wi...

I picked this up from Chris Whisonant, too much fun...(note, I recreated the graphic and added the red arrow): This is from the scrolling banner on microsoft.com/exchange. Most of the terms seem to be defining what Exchange does (e-mail, anywhere, automation)...but "built-in viruses"? Must be...

I just can't seem to get enough of this mystery novel they call the quest for Microsoft Open XML to attempt becoming an industry standard. It's almost like playing a game of corporate whack-a-mole. Every time the truth seems to get out, another spin pops up. That just happened in the ongoing atte...

Computerworld covers the Microsoft partner conference:Turner credited business partners for helping Microsoft's Exchange e-mail server to attract more than 2.5 million e-mail users that were formerly on IBM's Lotus Notes software. Over the past two years, Microsoft has released a series of tools for...

Looks like Microsoft has openly declared war on RIM/Blackberry...Of course there's more to an Enterprise Mobile Solutions discussion than just TCO, but in many discussions TCO is an important driver. I do question by the way how many companies actually still make the business case for mobile email...

Some stunning reports out of TechEd from Ferris (Thanks, Rob and Bill). I'm also digesting the IBM team's reports from TechEd, some real surprises -- like, what happened to that customer success panel anyway? More on that later. In the meantime, Ferris says -- "Upgrade BlackBerry Enterprise Ser...

Some very revealing data points from Osterman Research, via the InfoWorld Open Sources blog:The survey reveals some key findings: * 70 percent are concerned or extremely concerned about the complexity of the Microsoft Exchange migration effort. * 69 percent are concerned about the amount of...

Consider the source, but even then...an interesting look at the "justification" for migrating away from Lotus. A lengthy article, never once does it discuss business benefits, strategic objectives, ROI, or anything that remotely resembles a solid set of business reasons for migration. There's no e...

Interesting observation about the sense of community, or lack thereof, around different products/vendors in the IT marketplace from Michael Singer:Does the largest software vendor in the world have people who are actually excited by its products and drive themselves into a frenzy when the latest ver...

I'm glad that someone finally realized there is a meme here...In the pantheon of controversial Microsoft comments, CEO Ballmer's quote this week about the Apple iPhone...ranks right up there. But between Ballmer and Chairman Bill Gates, that comment would be hard-pressed to crack the Top 15 all-time...

It's been a while since I've felt the need to comment on competitive practices I'm encountering in the field, but as it is getting personal, it's time to take a look. For the last eight weeks or so, I've been receiving occasional reports from Microsoft "migrate from Notes" events all over the worl...

As my daughter would say, "that does not sound good":Western Australia's Department of Planning and Infrastructure (DPI) has revealed its Microsoft Exchange-based e-mail system is suffering frequent outages that are creating a risk of embarrassing public data loss. "The existing messaging environm...

BBC business editor Robert Peston takes a second look at his progress moving to Microsoft Windows Vista. The going is not good at all:I installed Office XP on my new [Vista] laptop, and have been puzzled and irked that Outlook will not save sign-on passwords. It means I have to type in my p...

Computerworld is busy in the collaboration market this week....Most of the problems don't appear to be the result of underpowered PCs or of faulty or misconfigured e-mail servers. Instead, users say, and Microsoft acknowledges, the underlying cause is changes made under Outlook's hood to accommodate...

Oops...The OneCare bug, first reported by users writing on a OneCare support message thread six weeks ago, seemed to be deleting Outlook and Outlook Express data files -- .pst and .dbx files, respectively -- after a malware scan. ... As of midday Tuesday, no solution had been posted to the forum, e...

Looks like at least one organization is jumping off the rip-and-replace treadmill...Citing concerns over cost and compatibility, the top technology official at the federal Department of Transportation has placed a moratorium on all in-house computer upgrades to Microsoft's new Windows Vista operatin...

PC Pro UK: Fair Exchange?

February 28 2007

PC Pro's Simon Jones takes a detailed look at how the rip-and-replaced or deprecated features in Exchange 2007 play out in the real world...Are you considering upgrading your Exchange Server to the newly released 2007 version? Are you worried about how your existing Outlook/Exchange-based solutions...

Like I said...This year, Microsoft is releasing a trio of tools and templates designed to ease a switch to its unified communications platform, which Microsoft has upgraded with the recently released Exchange 2007 and forthcoming upgrades to SharePoint Server 2007 and Office Communications Server 20...

Yawn.... Microsoft launched its habitual pre-emptive strike at Lotusphere Sunday with updated tools to ease migration from Domino/Notes to Exchange Server/SharePoint. The tools, partially an upgraded version of last year's model will be available as free downloads over the next 30 days. ... One...

Glad to see we're (collectively) providing rich entertainment value to Roger Whitehead...Microsoft normally announces something about now to try to attract wavering punters to its products. The Lotus faithful treat these 'spoilers' with contempt, their blog sites typically showing the infeasibility...

I'm well aware that people who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones. But anything I write about this is a mere pebble compared to the comments on today's most "dugg" story (2762 diggs at this moment):As I type this post I still can't believe it. I'm literally stunned. If you haven't already...

Some interesting changes in the pricing structure for Exchange 2007. Mary Jo picks up the elimination of Outlook from the Exchange 2007 CAL...Simplification? Sounds more like a way for Microsoft to wring more dollars from customers, to me.The comments are even more interesting -- pointing out some...

Exchange 2007 released to manufacturing last week. Lots of changes for an admin to think about versus Exchange 2003, with little net-new in the way of feature benefits as a result of these changes. Takeaway: Here are some of the features that Microsoft is taking away in Exchange 2007; ones that co...

As usual, the Microsoft Exchange roadmap depends on who you ask and when...Microsoft is still hazy on what direction future features in Exchange Server will take. Exchange Server 2007 is set to launch this month. Although many had thought Microsoft would have committed by now to some new capabiliti...

Well, it's been more than a month since I wrote anything on this topic, but this case study is too useful to ignore. It describes how Hyperion migrated a mixed Domino/Exchange environment to Exchange 2003... at a cost of $1.2 million... for 3800 users. In other words, US$315 per user. And what di...

But [Ozzie] sees lots of ways to use the Web to complement Windows and Office that Microsoft has barely tapped. "Take PowerPoint, for example," he tells a gaggle of analysts crowding around him at a Microsoft cocktail party in July. "Wouldn't it be great if you could hit F5 when you finished...

SearchExchange tells it like it is....Because of major Exchange Server architecture changes, moving from Exchange 200e to Exchange 2007 is going to be as dramatic and complex as upgrading from Exchange 5.5 to Exchange 2000. ... The bottom line is that, unless Microsoft has something in the works t...

In my posting yesterday about Paul Thurrott's review of the "dark side" of Windows RC1, I emphasized Paul's comments about the inconsistent UI in Windows Vista, and extended that out to what I've seen of Office 2007 so far. My key point was that I often hear the supposed consistency and familiarity...

When we have the so-called "Boss Loves Microsoft" conversation, one of the reasons often given for user preference for Outlook is that "it works like other Microsoft software" and thus "it's easier for our users" and "we won't have to do training". In my experience, none of these supposed-truisms a...

At least I'm not the only messaging vendor who wonders "where's the value" with Exchange 2007...it seems like an incremental move from the existing versions. Microsoft seems somewhat aware of some the major issues with Exchange, but the product changes are nods towards those issues rather than solut...

This link was sent to me by someone helping frame a discussion about the relative security of IBM vs. Microsoft products. Very interesting considering that none of MS's major products (other than SQL Server) has had a new release in the last year.this year Microsoft has already addressed more criti...

The only favorable argument I've ever heard for Exchange's single instance store is disk space savings... MS proponents often claim (without data) that this is some kind of huge competitive advantage. While I've tackled the subject generally in places like my Boss Loves Microsoft presentation, noth...

There's been a lot of talk about Exchange 2007 from the perspective of the shipping version being available only as a 64-bit release. Most of the Exchange world seems to think that the move to 64-bit is a good thing for server headroom, for example, from Jim McBee's weblog:The 64-bit move for Excha...

First leaked in 2000, Microsoft still can't decide what the story is around moving Exchange to SQL Server. It's on, it's off, it's committed, it's not. And for sure, it's a point where Microsoft's spokespeople are particularly defensive:"As we plan the next version of Exchange [currently code-...

InfoWorld's Oliver Rist takes a look at how Microsoft's delays ultimately impact the customer..mentioning Vista, Expressions, Visual Studio, and Exchange:The problem is that Redmond is dictating a 64-bit-only future for pretty much all of its back-server products once Longhorn sees daylight. I'm fin...

InternetNews writes about the upcoming Exchange 2007 release and it's 64-bit architecture. This quote from Gartner's John Enck is what got my attention:"The average server lifecycle is between three to five years, anyway," he said. "By the time you go from one [software] release to the next...

Well, not me personally...but for those consultants, business partners, systems integrators, and groupies who are... welcome to Lotus's home town! My colleagues and I would like to invite you to a special hometown-crowd reception on Tuesday night. I wish I could be there -- to talk shop, to exp...

While clearly evaluating beta software, Bartercard has some basic challenges with the notion of there being value in planning an upgrade to Office 2007. According to CIO Jason Van:Van was critical of Office 2007, which he said did not have a major feature that is attractive to the company. "I don'...

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Interesting link that's been sent to me a few times, with an article educating MCPs on how to deal with objections to Microsoft solutions. It's certainly written from the kool-aid-drinking perspective, but that's not surprising given the audience.When it comes to Microsoft bashing, partners hav...

Jupiter Research's Joe Wilcox comments on Microsoft's unified messaging strategy:Microsoft's upgrade strategy follows down two fairly consistent tracks: Increase the number of product versions or breakout features, extend them and create a Product B or C that tightly integrates back to original...

Todd Wanke needs a little education in public spin...On the MS "Tools for Moving to a Microsoft Collaboration Platform" blog this morning, he tries to claim victory over an IBM technote. The technote in question discusses how the Microsoft Exchange connector for Lotus Notes is supported....

John Fontana reports from TechEd last week...."We had our routing [service] on a cluster and now it needs to go somewhere else, and that means more servers," says Christopher Wenzel, applications analyst for the law firm of Katten Muchin and Rosemann. Wenzel, who has clusters running in four of...

I just have one question -- a keynote on a Sunday night??I have to tell you, I was extremely under whelmed. I promise this is not coming from "Alan the guy who works at IBM". I am telling you honestly as someone who was there to learn what MS's vision is, I was pretty bored. More ...

Infoworld and other IDG publications have been running this story today....[Microsoft Corporate Vice President Dave] Thompson was on a press tour in the U.S. this week to promote Exchange Server 2007 and also provide an update on the Exchange business at Microsoft.So I heard! Apparently, it in...

Exchange "12" is reviewed in PC Pro UK. If this is not one of the most spun and apologetic-on-behalf-of-Microsoft reviews I've ever read, emphasis mine:A year ago, I was furious that the Exchange team hadn't fulfilled what it had practically promised by moving its database store over to SQL Ser...

Network World's John Fontana asked for Mike Rhodin's response to this week's Bill Gates comments:Lotus has no intent to back off its stated commitment to provide backward compatibility for all Notes applications regardless of reports to the contrary this week from longtime rival Microsoft. ...

So while we're here in Karlsruhe, Microsoft has their own conference in progress, covering SharePoint. Bill Gates spoke yesterday, covering a number of interesting topics. The speech transcript has been posted, including the Q&A (where he was joined by Kurt DelBene). Some very interestin...

Several articles in the last few days about a permission-less security hole in Exchange. The first articles had headlines like "Worm could wreck Exchange" and "Hackers expected to target Exchange". Within 24 hours, that moved to "Exploit out for Exchange bug". From "Worm could wreck Exch...

Last week's news of the ISO approving the Open Document Format was good news for future document interoperability. But the paraphrased opening assertion from Microsoft in this Computerworld article is hilarious -- in what other industry in the world are standards viewed as a hinderance to in...

"Keep it Real", Ray

April 27 2006

Put these two press articles together and what have you got? Fortune, May 1, 2006, "Microsoft's new brain":As [Ray] Ozzie pushes to remake Microsoft, he does it knowing that everything the company does is examined under a microscope. He frequently recalls something a friend at another tech c...

The headline is actually somewhat inflammatory versus the article, but the point is there--Exchange 12 will be more difficult to architect and administer than current Exchange releases. It's explained away as "pain for gain", but why? All the great new administration features in Notes/Domino 7...

Brien Posey reviews Exchange 12/Outlook 12. The first thing that struck me:I did some performance monitoring and found that memory was the bottleneck. After I added an extra 512 MB of RAM to each machine, Office 12 began to perform at an acceptable level. It still wasn't blazingly fast, but it...

For ten weeks now, we've covered the saga of the new Microsoft Application Analyzer for Lotus Notes Domino 2006. People like Paul Mooney and David DeWell have dissected the tool's logic and found that it does very little in terms of analyzing Notes apps...and is subject to manipulation. Las...

Forbes' Daniel Lyons was at the Microsoft "People Ready" event in New York last week. He has a very interesting take.... No one mentioned the fact that in 1997, Microsoft held a similar event in New York City to declare that IBM's "big iron" was dead, because Windows NT--remember Windows NT?--w...

David DeWell, who looked at the beta of Microsoft's Application Analyzer and gave it his "official FUD seal", has now checked out the released version. And as also noticed by Paul Mooney, the output is quite customizable...I was able to change this XML file to make all of my applications resi...

US$500 million for a marketing campaign. It had to come from somewhere....IBM, with a $90 billion-a-year business of selling technology to businesses, doesn't intimidate easily. Ken [B]isconti, vice-president for IBM Lotus Workplace products, calls Ballmer's speech a "thinly-veiled promotio...

Over at Paul Mooney's blog, he's shared the contents of an e-mail from a Notes customer. The customer describes their experience with Microsoft and the Application Analzyer for Lotus Notes: had to setup a workstation to run the analyser and before Microsoft came in I ran the analyser on all ou...

Technical knock out

March 9 2006

One week later, and there is no response from anyone at Microsoft to Paul Mooney's evaluation of the Application Analyzer 2006 for Lotus Notes. This despite the fact that guys like Peter, Paul, and Eric specifically asked for Paul to wait for the shipping version and then re-test. I think we can...

Gartner recently published a case study which examines the Notes to Exchange migration done by RSM McGladrey. Microsoft also has a version of the case study posted. It's very enlightening to read them both, and see what a difference the independent view from Gartner is. While I never like...

Now that Microsoft has released the Application Analyzer 2006 for Notes, Paul Mooney has reprised his examination of the beta code, code-named "Red Bull". No longer can Microsoft claim that this is beta...so here are the results of Paul's sought-after test drive. In part 1, Paul examines...

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Tom Duff called it

February 11 2006

Several weeks ago, I linked to Tom Duff's comments regarding Microsoft's non-presence in the Lotusphere 2006 product showcase. At the time, we had lots of voices from Redmond tell me that Lotus wasn't doing the right thing for mutual customers, that the mission was around coexistence and intero...

Butler Group's weblog takes a look at MIcrosoft's "redbull" efforts on Notes migrations:Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt (FUD) is, all too frequently in the IT world, part of a marketer's armoury, and well ahead pre-announcements of software are not uncommon from Microsoft. However, to announce and...

Microsoft program manager Erik Ashby attempts to spin out of a hole:One of those tools we announced was the Microsoft Application Analyzer 2006 for Lotus Domino. We said this tool would be available in the first quarter of 2006. The tool is currently in a private beta with a number of custome...

Mary Jo Foley picks up the story...While Microsoft officials claim the tool was pulled because its beta test period has ended, others aren't buying it. (Make sure to read the comments under the linked post.) Sounds like this isn't the first time Microsoft has removed Notes-related content from...

More red bull spew

January 30 2006

Microsoft's John Westworth says:[T]he reason the BETA version of the Lotus Notes Application Analyser has been taken off the download site is because it's a BETA and as such it's reached the end of it's BETA life cycle. Nothing more sinister than that I'm afraid.The comment I've posted (current...

Nigel Cheshire sums up the folly of Microsoft's migration efforts in one simple paragraph:If you are considering a migration from Lotus Notes/Domino to Microsoft, I want you to think about a few things before making the leap. The development languages don't mesh, the document store is different,...

Gee, that's funny... Microsoft has pulled the beta of the newly announced version of the Application Analyzer for Lotus Notes down from microsoft.com. The entry on the page referenced in yesterday's press release now just says "coming soon". The old 2003 version is still available. It cou...

You know what's funny about dropping customer names? Sometimes, just mentioning a company name doesn't tell the whole story. There's a huge difference between saying something like "xyz customer announced an intention to" and "xyz customer finished implementing and is really really happy". I'...

Wow, what a surprise -- Microsoft has issued a press release today about their plans for "plucking" Lotus Notes/Domino customers. As anticipated earlier this morning, it discusses updated migration tools from Notes to Microsoft, and some specific wins on Microsoft's part. As to the tools,...

Hmmm, not there yet... The good news is, we have a "Red Bull" field report already. Paul Mooney ran the updated Microsoft Application Analzyer over the weekend, and found that There is very little of anything to this tool. Now, it looks good, don't get me wrong, but in my opinion, it has l...

Two quotes from Mark Litchfield, director of NGS Software:"This one has massive financial implications if someone exploits it" ... "If you did it right, you could own every Outlook user in the world within a week"wow. Link: Messaging Pipeline: Microsoft's Newest Bug Could Be Awful, Researc...

I've received several comments this week, directly or indirectly, that I've let the Lotus vs. Microsoft theme get too out of control, too petty, too whatever. That edbrill.com readers would like to see me spend more time on my own turf, discuss other general themes in the industry, get more int...

Reaction among some competitors to Exchange 12 beta 1 announcement...Tim Bray, a Sun Web technologist and the co-inventor of XML, told eWEEK that while some of Microsoft's software was excellent, "I cannot say that Exchange falls into that category," whether from a technical engineering or feat...

A VERY interesting press release from Lucid8:A recent survey provides clear evidence that a large number of organizations are experiencing disastrous Exchange Server failures. The survey was conducted by Lucid8, a provider of automated disaster prevention, optimization and recovery software for...

As a tribute to being in Peter's country, I'm offering a link to his blog for the first time in a while...you're welcome for the traffic, Peter. :) The occasion? Another example of Microsoft's insistent belief that Exchange's single instance store is a competitive advantage for Exchange. I'm no...

A wake for Exchange 5.5

December 1 2005

In the category of "I'm not making this up", The Inquirer reports on a wake which Microsoft held for Exchange 5.5:Nothing wrong with wakes, but this time Microsoft is celebrating the death of Exchange Server 5.5, an eight year old product which the executives described as a "she".Gee, where was...

Yeah, its easy to migrate a Notes application, as long as you have no data, no code, no agents, no lookups and no workflow... Hang on while I just shut down all the domino servers. I laughed out loud that Paul's use of the analyzer finds that a standard out of the box discussion database is co...

InfoWorld writes about Azaleos and their value-add plans around the Exchange 12 upgrade plan. The quotes are from Keith McCall, who worked on the Exchange team at Microsoft as well as with the Domino "Dot" products (.Action, .Merchant) back in the day at Lotus::Microsoft's plan for Exchange 12...

Can I claim dibs on being the first non-MS person to say this sounded like a bad idea? I guess maybe I'm a little more biased than these... Peter Pawlack of Directions on Microsoft is quoted in Information Week, Analyst Criticizes Microsoft Making Exchange 12 Only 64-Bit :"Only a small subs...

Channel9 is featuring its first-ever interview with an Exchange guy. Some great quotes in there: "Almost everybody uses Exchange, they just don't know it" "So far we've given developers 42 different APIs...developers have found that confusing" "My e-mail server might be down....yup, i...

I wasn't the only one who said "wow" when the earth moved under Microsoft Exchange the other day (ref: Exchange 12: 64 bit only?). Some other blogger views: Andrew Pollack:Exchange 12 will do what every previous version of Exchange has been targeted to do. It will have enough new features an...

Dec and Bill are both pointing to Microsoft employee Eileen Brown's weblog:but the thing that really caught my eye was the statement about Exchange. Exchange 12 (E12) will only be made available in 64 bit. Yes, I said only.....I almost want to assume that this was a misunderstanding. Even...

Mary Jo Foley reports that Microsoft is again describing Exchange "12" as a "late 2006/early 2007" deliverable.Microsoft execs announced earlier this year that Exchange 12 would ship in 2006. Now Microsoft is back to saying to expect Exchange 12 in late 2006 or early 2007.That will make more th...

Ironic props to Mr. Ozzie

November 11 2005

Every time Mr. Ozzie is in the news, my blogdigger feed for "Lotus Notes" takes off. It continues to be standard practice to acknowledge Ray in the press and blogs as the creator of Lotus Notes. I think it's kind of funny and ironic that Ozzie's contribution to Lotus Notes is always men...

SearchExchange writes about a last-ditch attempt to restore a corrupted Exchange server from Outlook users' OST files.Recently, I was recruited by a colleague to help him recover Microsoft Exchange data from a failed hard drive. Unfortunately for us, he had a corrupt backup. The failed drive con...

A Microsoft blogger describes changes coming in Microsoft Access 12. vowe picks up the salient point:Access shares something with Notes: an MDB, much like a Notes NSF, contains a full application with data and UI and code. So this is how Microsoft wants to make SharePoint available offline. I...

I can see the marketing campaign now...In user testing, Microsoft found that nine out of every 10 features that customers wanted to see added to Office were already in the program. "They simply don't know it's there," Chris Capossela, a Microsoft vice president, told a developer crowd last we...

Ferris's David Via has a few observations on why Microsoft SharePoint isn't suited for enterprise content management, including scalability, search, navigation, and cost. Cost? Wait, I thought SharePoint was free? Link: Ferris Research blog: SharePoint Is Not Good for Enterprise Content Man...

The Reg on last week's nonannouncement, but the interesting bit isCapossela added that Microsoft is making an effort to cut down the volume of email people are getting. "People often collaborate through email. They send each other attachments, which is a very inefficient way to work together on...

I was struck with a sense of déjà vu in reading this CRN interview with Bill Gates. Here's what Gates said about Katmai, the next version of SQL Server (post "Yukon"):WinFS is the idea of taking the file system and the database and the directory and the mail store and bringing t...

Steve Ballmer on blogging

September 16 2005

I'm sure many a blogger will be linking to the new BusinessWeek story, "Troubling Exits at Microsoft". It's a fascinating look inside the bureaucracy and employee morale at Microsoft. What you might miss is the BusinessWeek Online extra, "Steve Ballmer Shrugs Off the Critics". This is int...

The Microsoft Exchange team blog today reports that the following APIs will be "de-emphasized" in Exchange 12, the next release, with some disappearing altogether: CDOEx (CDO 3.0) WebDAV ExOLEDB Transport event sinks ("will not function correctly") Web Forms ("will not function cor...

Forbes examines the state of Microsoft's business:Microsoft is slowing down. It is bigger, more lumbering and less profitable than it was five years ago. Its sales are up 73% in five years, but profits are up only 30%. Payroll has doubled in the last six years. In the fiscal year just ended, sal...

Dana Gardner writes:So, in project Elixir, all the customer data feeds from the CRM application on the server to Outlook on all the client PCs so that the salespeople can input their CRM updates and notes where ever they are -- connected or not. The offline capability plus the fact they are usin...

Can Microsoft sound any more defensive and head-in-the-sand about the State of Massachusetts' decision to move to OpenDocument format?"I think it would be pretty risky for the state of Massachusetts to go in a direction like this without a clear look at the costs first," Alan Yates, general man...

A look forward at the 2006 version of Microsoft Exchange...I always appreciate when they document the current state of affairs in order to explain why the future will be so much better:Exchange is infamous for its database problems. Anyone who has ever had to migrate all the information using Ex...

This is just too much fun to write. I got back from lunch this afternoon to an e-mail from Tom Duff, forwarding a note he had received about a job opportunity at Microsoft. I'm certainly aware that Microsoft has field staff focused on Notes to Exchange migrations, though this is the first...

OK, OK, I know this will shock most of you -- I'm praising something Microsoft has done. Stop the presses. I've been watching the MSN Virtual Earth vs. Google Maps smackdown in the blogosphere the last few days with amusement. Vowe reported that Microsoft had made Apple disappear. Scoble ...

Two years in, only 15% have upgraded to Office 2003...Microsoft is facing an uphill battle to push copies of Office 2003 on customers and its ISV partner ecosystem, ahead of next year's predicted launch of Office 12. Office 2003 appears to be falling behind in targeted sales for this point in...

In my e-mail today is a note from a colleague, forwarded from a customer. The customer indicates that Microsoft has called her/him several times in the last few weeks wondering what their plans are now that IBM has (customer's words): "announced they are terminating the product". Anyone else...

More on how Microsoft is viewing Lotus customers as pieces of meat ready to be "plucked" (see comment#4/5)...While details were scarce, Witts said the company is especially eyeing accounts where Exchange Server can displace IBM/Lotus offerings and where market-leading Oracle databases could be...

Robert Scoble pointed to this article over the weekend...Informit.com: Five things wrong with SharePoint: Some pretty bold assertions about what's wrong with SharePoint.I have been accused many times of having a Microsoft bar code tattooed on my neck over the years, as a long time consultant...

Isn't this the same tired pitch that Microsoft has been using since their last partner conference?Microsoft executive said the vendor sees an opportunity to lure partners away from IBM to Microsoft's collaboration software because of the technology migration from the Lotus/Domino platform to Wo...

Even since Microsoft Exchange added clustering support, Exchange practitioners have always added a little asterisk when discussing its clustering capabilities. Exchange 2000 clustering had significant resource consumption issues, with Active/Active clustering especially, and there was a time wh...

The June 27 issue of Fortune contains an interview with Microsoft's Bill Gates and Ray Ozzie. The article subtitled "The Future of E-mail" is free for all, and contains Gates espousing about such things as whitelists and blacklists in Exchange and asserting that "every e-mail I've ever sent h...

Ovum reviews the new MS Office Communicator. Straightforward analysis of its capabilities, and thus useful reading for me from the competitive perspective. More interesting was Ovum's "Big Picture":While Microsoft will undoubtedly continue to play a leading role in the collaboration software w...

Why Lotus Domino's application layer shared-nothing active/active clustering model is such a huge competitive differentiator...Microsoft advises staying away from active/active clusters though, and imposes some serious limitations on them in order to avoid potential disaster -- and with good rea...

Somehow I missed this one earlier this month....Outlook Express is miserable and needs to be killed off. The question on my mind is how Microsoft could let this program fester like a gangrenous limb and not do anything about it. The reason I started using Outlook Express was to analyze and ev...

Former IBMer John Patrick writes of his experiences using Microsoft Outlook, and dealing with Microsoft tech support's "no way is it our problem" approach...Outlook is supposed to be much more "industrial strength". I got somewhat spoiled after having used Lotus Notes at IBM from 1992 to 2002....

Lots of moving parts required to deploy chat capabilities....Installation and configuration of LCS 2005 is where both the joys and the tribulations of an intensely integrated product first become apparent. Here is at least a partial list of other Microsoft products that are either required or c...

Michael Osterman, of Osterman Research, authored an introductory "what is" article about Microsoft SharePoint for SearchExchange. I'd quarrel with the assertion that "WSS [Windows SharePoint Services] is available at no cost for users of Windows Server 2003", since SQL Server is required for a...

As I mentioned last week, Paul Robichaux from Microsoft partner 3Sharp attended IBM's "Exchange Alternatives" seminar in New York. You can read Paul's review here. I was happy to have Paul there, as we have nothing to hide, and after all, he has invited me to Microsoft's "Optimizing Communi...

Despite the fact that paid support for Exchange 5.5 is slated to end on Dec. 31, version 5.5 of Microsoft's messaging platform is still in use by about 40% of those who answered that question in a recent survey, according to Ferris Research. ... The end of support for Exchange 5.5 is a motiv...

Just got off the Microsoft press conference around the acquisition of Groove. First, let me congratuate all involved. Having gotten to know Ozzie a bit more in the last few months, I have tremendous respect for his vision and intellect. Ray brings immediate credibility to the job, and I ...

On my way to the New England Notes Users Group meeting tonight in Waltham, hope to see some of you there... In the meantime, this article came across my desk today. Fascinating:Rugullies said the product has been proven to offer enterprise-class scalability and performance. But she said IT...

Both Seattle newspapers covered Microsoft's announcement yesterday. From the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, "Microsoft: Hold the phone -- and stay connected":Competitors are watching. "I would never want to underestimate Microsoft's ability to generate customer interest in their offerings, b...

Microsoft's hype machine kicked into high gear today, trotting out Gates, Raikes, etc. for a point release of Live Meeting, a service pack of Live Communications Server,and an upgrade and rebrand of Messenger into Communicator. Let's take a look at what Microsoft Monitor had to say: all that ca...

Ferris Research's report on SharePoint was published a few months ago, but available at the time to Ferris's subscribers only. I blogged some of the report's highlights and indicated that I hoped we'd all hear more about the report. IBM has acquired rights to redistribute the full report...

Well, after all the effort that went into confirming my registration, the least I could do was show up downtown today. Before morning, I'll have three different versions of this trip report. There's the blog version, the version I'm sending to the instructor and Microsoft with feedback, and...

A big public thank you to Gary Devendorf. Through his efforts, I'm (again) scheduled to attend the Lotus Notes Migration Workshop here in Chicago (at IBM Plaza, no less) on Monday next week. I just spoke with Asentus to confirm that the mix-up has been cleared up. Gary and his colleagues...

There are several comments on yesterday's thread, as well as in e-mail, defending Microsoft and their partner Asentus for bouncing me from next week's Notes migration seminar. After all, I didn't pay to attend a paid-for course, so why do I think I'm entitled to be there? Let's be really cle...

Gee, how convenient...Thank you for registering for the Competitive Platforms and Solutions - Lotus Notes Migration Workshop on February 7. Your seat in this event has been opened to the waiting list because we have not received your payment for the event. If you would like to register for th...

From the ZDNet coverage on Exchange 12: While e-mail has become a critical component of most businesses, the software needed to manage the communications has struggled to keep pace. Microsoft has achieved the goal of high availability, Thompson said, but the software is not as easy to manage as...

Coverage from Microsoft's briefings this week on Exchange "12". Kind of a yawner...good stuff in all articles. The best quote comes from Microsoft Watch, Microsoft Preps for 'E12':Exchange Server customers tend to be a bit slower in their upgrade habits, according to Dave Thompson, the corpor...

So now it gets personal?

January 15 2005

Microsoft's Jim Bernardo apparently couldn't wait to attack me on his new MSN Spaces blog. "Never judge a book by its cover", he says...My friend (though he probably wouldn't acknowledge me as a friend) and ex-Lotus colleague Ed Brill has a blog (www.edbrill.com) which is ostensibly about, as...

CRN's Barbara Darrow has done an effective analysis of the state-of-the-state of Exchange at Microsoft. Barb, are you writing my Lotusphere presentation for me? Thanks!Sources at Microsoft have said for some time that key personnel are fleeing the e-mail server effort because it wasn't seen as...

Maybe I'm overextending my importance in this equation, but could Microsoft be planning to announce a roadmap for Exchange next week solely to blunt my ability to say "they don't have a roadmap" in my Lotusphere presentation????Microsoft executives will publicly reveal a new roadmap for Exchang...

Hundreds of IBMers will forgive the fact that I'll be making a last-minute addition to one of my internal presentations today. Now class, let's review:In May 2004, Microsoft said it would ship Edge Services in early 2005, but in November 2004, the company hinted that the date was in doubt. In l...

Via Scobleizer:Well, actually I think the biggest blogging statistic I know, which really blew me away, is that we've got close to a million people setting up blogs (Web logs) with the Spaces capability that's connected up to Messenger.(From CNET interview with Bill Gates, January 5, 2005) I...

Shortly after blogging about Microsoft's upcoming roadshow, I decided that as IBM is a Microsoft partner, I might want to attend this seminar. I followed the instructions, including use of the RSVP code. At some point, I bailed out of the registration process -- I think I was off trying to determine IBM's MS partner level. When I came back to start over again, it seemed that the site must have set some kind of cookie around the RSVP code. For when I got to the appropriate page, I noticed that it had kindly applied the RSVP code discount a second time. ...

The holidays really haven't been very quiet this year, have they? From www.msreadiness.com/lotusnotes.asp:Lotus Notes customers may be concerned about the future of their Communications and Collaboration platform investments. At Lotusphere 2004, IBM delivered a clear message--IBM customers will...

A colleague sent along this link to an article on MSExchange.org, highlighting the incompatibilities between Outlook Web Access 2003 and Windows XP SP2. Until I read this article, I had assumed the XP SP2 issues were all about the popup blocker. Turns out there is a lot more to it. I gues...

So much for intermittent blogging this week. :) Directions on Microsoft seems to have hit the nail on the head with Micosoft's Top 10 challenges for 2005. Number one with a bullet (emphasis mine):The roadmaps for many major Microsoft products--including Windows XP, Office, and Exchange--don'...

The analysts over at Ferris Research are buzzing about the latest shifting sands in the Microsoft Exchange world. First, Richi Jennings asserted thatThe Lotus community's scorn over the Exchange roadmap isn't entirely justified, but it seems to be getting louder by the day.(Good response co...

The roadmap for Exchange hits another pothole...Microsoft's ever-changing messaging and collaboration roadmap is about to get another makeover, as the anticipated Exchange Edge Services platform, originally due out in 2005, is pushed to 2006 and given a bigger mission. .... Microsoft will now ma...

For the first time, Internet Explorer has been losing market share. According to a worldwide survey conducted in late November by OneStat.com, a company in Amsterdam that analyzes the Web, Internet Explorer's share dropped to less than 89 percent, 5 percentage points less than in May. Firefox no...

From Microsoft Watch:Microsoft also is extending the custom-support period for Exchange Server 5.5. Microsoft officials said Friday that custom, paid support for 5.5 release of Microsoft's e-mail server will continue until December 31, 2007.So, what does it say about Exchange 5.5 that customers...

Customers increasingly want to buy just what they will use and install, not a lot of shelfware, many partners say. That is why Microsoft hopes to arm large account resellers (LARs) and other partners to better demonstrate why the latest-and-greatest Microsoft products bring real value. Un-deploy...

As I mentioned after my visit to Holland a couple of weeks ago, Microsoft in the Netherlands scheduled a couple of seminars for Lotus customers and partners to give the MS take on collaboration. Now that the seminars have been concluded, the presentations are posted on Microsoft's website. ...

It's not really hard to understand the "why" of it if you just take a mathematical moment to think it through. Outlook is a part of Microsoft's Office Suite, but it is something of an odd man out when it comes to the basic architecture of Office applications. It doesn't handle files the same way...

CRN: Volume deals drag out

November 29 2004

Shame. Microsoft is going on the defensive in the volume licensing game. The company's field sales force no longer is being told to push new Enterprise Agreements (EAs)--typically three-year volume deals--but rather to stem the bleeding, sources said. "The No. 1 priority for [Microsoft] sales...

Antepo's Maxime Seguineau calls Microsoft on the carpet for talking out of both sides of their mouth about "industry standards" in Microsoft Office Live Communications Server 2005.To make matters worse, rather than using a pure installation, Microsoft uses proprietary extensions of SIP/SIMPLE a...

I am not sure what the opening sentence of this article means:Microsoft will announce the release date of the next version of its Exchange Server in the first half of 2005, but until the upgrade arrives users can expect more management tools for existing versions, a company executive said this w...

In my presentation earlier this week at SNUG, the Dutch user group for IBM Websphere & Lotus Software, I used a slide I've been using most of the year to describe Microsoft's track record in collaboration. Some of you have seen this... I use it to make a simple point. When considering...

Microsoft had a workshop a few weeks ago for Lotus business partners on integrating Domino and .NET. Looking at the agenda, it appears there was a fair bit of time spent on migration away from Domino, but I'll go with the storyline."There's absolutely no reason to abandon Notes," said Balaban...

However, Microsoft must still convert staunch Exchange 5.5 users. Mainstream support for Exchange 5.5 stops at the end of this year and all support ends at the end of 2005. "Our focus is still on 5.5 because as much as 40 percent of the installed base still use it as their primary messaging syst...

I do believe I've been flamed (emphasis mine, since it seems that the reason I believe I this was directed at me may not have been obvious):The purpose of this blog is to help Exchange customers with Exchange; blogging about the competition does not serve that purpose. We read the same press st...

I'm sure this will show up in one of IDG's US publications later today (Infoworld, Network World, Computerworld etc):Microsoft in May said it would deliver in 2005 an addition to Exchange called Edge Services, an intelligent message transfer agent for the edge of a company's network that offers...

I've been asked several times in the last few days what my opinion is of Microsoft's "Istanbul" announcement earlier this week. Having read a whole bunch of press and analyst coverage (thanks to Adam, PBOK, Peter, Michael, etc. for good links), here are some thoughts.Istanbul will replace Wind...

This sounds like exactly what the doctor ordered, but there are some serious limitations in recalling messages. For one thing, you can only recall messages that were sent to Exchange recipients. Messages sent to SMTP mailboxes can't be recalled because they do not exist in the Exchange Informati...

Ferris Research has just published a research paper assessing Microsoft's Windows SharePoint Services (with a healthy dose of SharePoint Portal Server 2003 included as well). I don't usually link to analyst reports on the blog, especially ones that are subscriber-only access. This one, though,...

Microsoft just published a presentation and whitepaper about their internal deployment of Microsoft Office Live Communications Server 2005 (thanks to Peter de Haas for the link). Even as long as I've been competing with Microsoft, there's something about this one that amazes me -- yes, it's another...

A fairly lengthy article describing the steps an Exchange admin had to go through to restore service after a system failure: I was at my desk, preparing to wrap things up for the day, when I noticed that Outlook had timed out on its attempt to connect to the Exchange server. In the past, this o...

Then I attempted to restore the Exchange backup. In fact, for the next thirteen days, I attempted to restore the Exchange backup. I'd work all day, grab a few hours sleep, eat at my desk, and image, reinstall, update, and try again, over and over again. I followed all the documented steps. The...

CRN: Office Server Salvo

October 11 2004

More moving parts for Microsoft Office?Some analysts say Microsoft still hasn't experienced a bump from the whole Office System lineup. "While the Office Systems is a good approach for Microsoft, it hasn't lead to any rapid sales increases," said Pal DeGroot, analyst with Directions On Microsof...

MSN Lead Product Manager Brooke Richardson:"Recently, there's been an increase in exploits of the WebDAV protocol, which is used to enable people to access Hotmail from Outlook and Outlook Express. ...But because of the rise in abuse of this protocol, we're making a change to WebDAV to curb abus...

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"Outlook is a virus magnet! Seems like I can never watch the news or pick up the paper without a story about yet another killer virus targeting Outlook.A wee bit of contrast here. Fifteen years in market, and Lotus Notes has never been the conduit for a virus attack. Features like the executi...

Oops, almost forgot to examine the next two chapters.... Day 3: The "two-headed monster": Keeping two machines on the same page with Outlook is a tough job. Again CNET is forced to recommend third-party products for basic functionality. What a great thing that Notes uses the very same NSF arc...

Day two...Outlook seems to derive a cruel pleasure in hitting us with the "Your mailbox is over its size limit" error just when we're sending the most important e-mail of the day. All too often, we have had to scramble to delete messages, sometimes even trashing mission-critical e-mail in the pr...

This looks like it is going to be a fun series:Each weekday this week, we'll tackle a scary Outlook nightmare. Our expert tips and downloads will help you chase away the Outlook gremlins hiding in your closet. "Monday's moaner: I keep searching and searching..." You mean it's 2004 and Outlook...

Microsoft has appointed a new executive to persuade business customers in Europe, the Middle East and Africa to choose its software over open-source alternatives. Ashim Pal on Monday became Microsoft's senior director of EMEA platform strategy, having previously worked as vice president of tech...

Amy Blumenfeld makes her debut on this group blog with a "spoiled" Domino person's first-blush look at SharePoint:As I sat through Sharepoint classes and started to play with the server more, it has become clear to me: Notes/Domino has spoiled me in many ways. We in the Notes/Domino world hav...

...CEO Jack Messman told customers and partners that Microsoft's extensive license fees for Windows have prevented end-user organizations and independent software developers from directing cash into more "innovative" software. "I am of the opinion that innovation has been slowed because of Micr...

Ouch- 2Cherries director, Gideon Jacobs, today said that problems with Microsoft's Exchange Server software crippled the company's Brisbane office on the eve of its first day of deliveries. "Microsoft Exchange Server corrupted our office server's registry which caused a total [communications]...

"As soon as the Lotus Notes system was rolled out to the users, they could instantly see the benefits" Ah, music to my ears. Actually, this story is a textbook example of why an organisation with multiple mail systems will see major benefits by consolidating on a single system. Wish I h...

Part of Forbes' "Microsoft at 30" coverage... I vividly remember the day that the Placeware announcement was made last year. I was at the IBM SWG sales meeting, and there were lots of questions. It's been interesting to watch:WebEx, with $190 million in sales last year, seems to have been ab...

This whole "Longhorn" replan isn't really a major focus of mine -- as I said last week, I tend to wait until a Microsoft product is close to shipping or has shipped before thinking about its features. I have been reading the other blogs about it, though. Thus, this quote from Jupiter Research...

There's an official press release on this now, and coverage on other publications, but eWeek has to win for best headline on this story. From eWeek:Microsoft is expected to officially announce later on Friday its future roadmap for the desktop version of Longhorn. And while developers and custo...

I'm sure it's purely coincidence, but a few hours after yesterday's blog entry on the new Microsoft book on Notes migration, here's what you'll get when you surf on over to the download center: "The download you requested is unavailable. If you continue to see this message when trying to acc...

A fascinating non-story.Executives said Microsoft was opting to deliver a stream of releases that delivered messaging features in incremental waves. The first of those releases will come in September when Microsoft releases its Best Practices Analyzer for Exchange.a) that's a release? and b) fas...

An article discussing the extension of Microsoft Office beyond personal productivity into a product line. Most of the article is positive about the new Office 2003 capabilities, but there is one balance point, at least...Microsoft faces strong competitors in the collaboration field. I.B.M., for...

A short article pointing to an updated Microsoft tool to strip out "hidden" personal data in Office documents, such as comments, revisions, etc. There's a reason I typically only distribute PDFs of presentations I do these days -- it's easier than remembering to try to clean up speaker notes or...

Johansson admits that Microsoft "has lost a lot of trust" due to the way it traded off security for usability and features in the past, and says it will be a "gradual change before users discover that our products are safe."Link: Computerworld New Zealand: "We have lost a lot of trust" -- Micro...

on the lotus.com/compare website (needs a better subhead; I'll fix that tomorrow). There are two sections to the response -- some point/counterpoint, and some texture at looking at the overall market. The point/counterpoint includes a few quotes from the industry and trade press. One particu...

This has been one of the most incredible weeks for me professionally. It is like being on the Aerosmith roller coaster at Disney-MGM -- really really fast out of the gate, in the dark so you have no idea what's coming next, sensory overload, and yet great for the adrenaline rush and racing hear...

Not to be overlooked in the previous article....Gartner recently reported that IBM led the worldwide e-mail and collaboration market in 2003 with 46% market share, over Microsoft's 44.2%. While North America remains Microsoft's stronghold, it trails IBM in the other regions, including the Asia-P...

My colleague Michael O'Connell, the Editorial Director for IBM Developerworks, has also been watching the various quote-fests coming out of the Microsoft partner conference in Toronto earlier this week. (Hmmm, I was in Toronto earlier this week....). He comments on Ballmer's latest stance re...

Thanks to Duffbert for pointing me in the direction of this one early this morning; Tom has some observations and analysis on the interview as well. There is so much I could highlight and discuss from this article, but allow me just to focus on two bits.RAIKES: At the Q&A session for the...

Attendees at last year's event, in New Orleans, cheered when Microsoft Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Steve Ballmer addressed head-on some of the security challenges the software maker faces and outlined steps it said it would take to address them. However, Microsoft has yet to deliver on most of...

It hasn't been a good few months for the Exchange product team at Microsoft. First the Outlook team ships an updated connector for Lotus Domino; then they dismantle their own roadmap; and now they are facing internal competition:"Our first product here is going to be using Outlook that uses the...

Not a blog I regularly follow, but my colleague Adam sent along this link, discussing the upcoming renewal cycle for Microsoft's software maintenance program....His trade group recently put in Windows Server 2003. He had thought about moving users over to Office 2003, but the most compelling fea...

vowe points to a lengthy essay from Joel Spolsky about the relevance, or lack thereof, of the Windows API in today's market. The article makes some rather interesting assertions about the choice between developing rich client applications and web applications that is faced by every software d...

From the MS Exchange team blog:NOTE: Clustering does not immunize Exchange against failures on a shared disk. Shared disks are virtual server resources, and will fail over with the rest of the Resource Group. Although Exchange services will continue to run, clients will not be able to access ex...

Something interesting happened on the road to and from software dominance. Microsoft, which always delighted in displacing the old farts of technology, has become an old fart itself. Yes, ladies and gents, meet Microsoft: the new IBM. What once seemed a hungry, always-working-the-angles produc...

Despite the vague road map, Microsoft's Thompson took a shot at rival IBM Lotus, saying it doesn't have a clear road map. Ed Brill, who examines rivals' technologies as manager of Lotus' competitive project office, fired back: "I don't know how he can say we don't have a clear road map; we're s...

Check this out:There will be a new release of Exchange. We're not ready to announce when that is or what it is.Mr. Thompson, I have just one thing to say -- how dare you criticize the Lotus roadmap.Q: So there might be a version of Exchange before Longhorn? It is possible. What we will do is e...

I must have had this article forwarded to me ten times in the last two days. There's several others (like here), but I'll higlight the CRN one:The root cause may be a lack of value customers may perceive in SA. By Wilcox's count, 53 percent of enterprises and 40 percent of SMBs said that they s...

Sorry Paul, I had to do this.... I'm talking about geoclustering: building clusters of servers that are in physically separate locations. For example, a company in a metropolitan area such as Detroit could run Exchange Server on a cluster, placing one cluster server at headquarters in Dearborn...

WinFS won't be fully useable on a large-scale basis to search content across corporate networks when Longhorn server ships. "So it could be that for example, you could use WinFS as a server for collaboration in workgroups. But if you want to support hundreds of users, that may wait for the updat...

vowe.net:I don't understand why everybody is crying about the requirements for running Windows Longhorn: "The average PC is expected to have a dual-core 4 to 6GHz processor, a minimum of 2GB of RAM, a 1 terabyte hard drive, 1 gigabit Ethernet, and a graphics card that's three times as fast as...

A very thoughtful article about the reasons that people hate (or love to hate) Microsoft.What really annoys me is when people are so blinded by their hatred of Microsoft that they lose all objectivity and go about spouting drivel to others, when they haven't even thought about what it is they're...

The legal stuff was excpeted....I'm actually more interested in these two sentences from the report:sales in the information worker unit, which oversees Office, grew to $2.7bn from $2.3bn in the year-ago quarter. ...The information worker unit, which was not hit by legal charges, saw operating i...

Microsoft might even go so far as to design future versions of Exchange to be able to fully emulate Lotus Notes servers. Again, this is purely speculation, but it is speculation based on what Microsoft indicates is a firm commitment.Place your bets.... Link: SearchExchange: Microsoft MVPs hear...

When it comes to Windows server software, it's tough to justify an added expense for an operating system that pretty much does the same thing as before. Try explaining that one to senior management. This opinion column discusses the challenges Microsoft customers are facing when considering whet...

Spun out of a discussion in the Lotus Partner Forum.... Here's the question again: What function key is typically used to refresh the mail inbox? Answer: F9! Why is it a trick question? Well, because for many years, I've been hammered by Notes haters that Notes "doesn't even use F5 to refr...

OK Microsoft, no more Mr. Nice Guy. Outlook really really sucks. All that nice interface is just used to disguise how bad your technology is in the back-end. As a long time Notes users I always had to agree to people telling me how superior Outlook was as a mail client, and since I had never u...

Yesterday's posting was indeed from a Microsoft document, positioning OpenOffice.org vs. MS Office for partners. Good discussion ensued. Thanks to Duffbert for chiming in about a recent meeting his company had with Microsoft and how many times and ways they tried to position their alternative...

"We believe it's unprecedented and inappropriate for the Commission to impose a fine on a company's U.S. operations when those operations are already regulated by the U.S. government," Gutierrez said. "The conduct at issue has been permitted by both the U.S. Department of Justice and a U.S. cour...

Last week, I discovered that Microsoft has reinstituted a "Competitive comparisons" section of the Exchange website. It's lighter than it was in the past, and notable because instead of featuring Microsoft's own competitive papers, they are now letting industry analyst papers do the talking....

With a tip o' the hat to Ben Langhinrichs, here's a real customer-focused quote on the whole Microsoft "Yukon" slipping issue:"We never guaranteed that buying Software Assurance would get you a product upgrade," said Tom Rizzo, director of product management for SQL Server at Microsoft. "If (cu...

Sources say the EU's draft ruling similarly finds Microsoft abused its monopoly in computer operating software to gain share in markets for digital media players and low-end servers. But the remedies sought go beyond the U.S. deal. The EU wants Microsoft to offer computer makers a version of Wi...

More on the SQL Server "Yukon" delay. Gartner and Jupiter analysts decry how the delay will impact Software Assurance customers, "Longhorn", and other MS plans. It also looks like the overlap period between SQL Server 2000 support and "Yukon" support will be quite small...certainly less time ...

It's been a good couple of weeks for MS's competition.......the software titan will likely face complaints from customers, particularly those who purchased licenses that included upgrades to new products over a set period of time, said Rob Helm, an analyst at research firm Directions on Microsof...

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An article about MS's appointment of a marketing executive for their server line. Emphasis mine:One long-time Microsoft analyst who requested anonymity, is not sure Microsoft should follow the Office System model, however. "The whole Office and Windows Server System [message] I think is confusi...

Article discussing Microsoft's drastically cut pricing initiative for Windows in Thailand...One IT manager at a financial services company who asked not to be named said he doesn't like the idea that his company "is subsidizing a foreign country's initiative." The IT manager said his company w...

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In June 2002 he spent $30,000 on a software maintenance contract for SQL Server under Microsoft's new annuity licensing program called Software Assurance. The program was introduced two years ago to reduce Microsoft's tangle of software maintenance offerings to a single plan. When Matthews si...

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On MSDN, via Peter O'Kelly:Whether or not you have been developing for the Microsoft Office System for a long time or just getting started, you may be a little overwhelmed by the number of new, re-crafted, or updated Microsoft products available for building collaborative solutions. This is ju...

In June, Microsoft said the Discovery suite would be delayed until 2005. However, the vendor has been silent about it since then...Sources familiar with the plans said some of Discovery's baseline capabilities will be channeled into the next-generation Windows operating system, or Longhorn, whil...

Q: Why is this a problem for Microsoft? ... ...[F]or Microsoft to have this code paraded in public is hugely embarrassing. Not least because the code is littered with profanity and might show that many Microsoft programmers do not do a very good job.Link: BBC Online: Q&A - Microsoft sourc...

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Haven't heard much about Office Live Communications Server now that it actually shipped. This is the first indication I've seen of its future. It sounds like the next release ("Vienna") is a point update to try to address issues with the 1.0 code. I'm sure Microsoft customers will be thrille...

With contracts coming up for renewal this year, many Microsoft customers will have the opportunity to pass judgment on the company's software maintenance plan. Some analysts see the looming contract expirations as the biggest challenge yet for the much-critiqued SA (Software Assurance) program....

Just the title is worth the blog entry...MyDoom collects addresses from any number of sources: text files, Outlook Express's mail store (*.DBX), the Windows Address book (*.WAB), HTML files, and others.But not names.nsf. :) Link: OutlookPower: Another month, another virus (thanks to Brian Row...

Another weapon, say integrators and IBM, is the threat of switching to IBM's WebSphere portal with applications-on-demand portlets as leverage for discounts. IBM Software Group Vice President Larry Bowden said a large European bank recently did just that. Microsoft had expected an $11 million re...

Geez, I only wish I had this column about one day earlier -- I could have added another line to the MS collaboration "Dead Products Society"....The handwriting has been on the wall for public folders for a year or two. I first heard a Microsoft speaker strongly discourage use of public folders a...

The Exchange e-mail group is getting a new top dog with the departure of Mohsen Al-Ghosein as vice president of Exchange Server. Dave Thompson will step into that role. Not the first time I've noticed an interesting sort of double-standard between how the market reacts to Microsoft and to IBM Lo...

Shark Tank is a Computerworld opinion column discusses real-world experiences in IT. Usually, they have a humorous bent -- gallows humor, reflecting on projects that didn't go as planned, or missed commitments, or whatever. This particular column discusses an Exchange 5.5 to 2000 upgrade that...

Volker has linked to an interesting article in the Inquirer... an opinion piece which, while it occasionally offers assertions without supporting evidence, covers the multitude of issues and challenges that Microsoft's core business faces at the moment. Hopefully it will get some attention, de...

Microsoft is now showing symptoms of Big Company Disease. In the case of Microsoft, the disease manifests itself differently from IBM because Microsoft, unlike IBM, is still headed up by the company founders. Men like Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer have the power to force the company to do the rig...

Directions on Microsoft has published a very good analysis of the issues facing Microsoft in 2004. Some quotes: It has become harder and harder for Microsoft to introduce updates that offer compelling new value and customers perceive many older products such as Office 97 as simply "good enou...

Worse still, if you take a close look at Microsoft's current generation of software, you'll quickly see that it's all designed to lock you into Microsoft products, from your desktop to your server. Take, for example, Office 2003. Unless you use its groupware and presence functionality, it's re...

I've been duped! Back in August, Microsoft announced that they were extending mainstream support for Exchange 5.5 for another year. At least that's how the press and others conveyed the MS announcement. Turns out that mainstream Exchange 5.5 support ends on 31 December 2003, as scheduled. A...

No Sharepoint for you today

December 4 2003

A strange article on the Microsoft website, which Airplay has just blogged about. If I am reading this right, the MS Small Business Server's (which I typically refer to as MS BS) installer has a date-based validation routine for installing MSDE. And if the computer's date is later than Novem...

Insert your favorite rendition of "If Microsoft made cars" here....First Microsoft set out to put a computer in every home. Now the software giant hopes to put one in every vehicle, too. "We'd like to have one of our operating systems in every car on Earth," said Dick Brass, vice-president of...

A wide-ranging interview with Hewlett-Packard's Tony Redmond. Redmond is Vice President and CTO for HP's services unit, and he's apparently still quite hands-on with the MS collaboration tools. Over the years, he has been the source of much of my good competitive information about Microsoft E...

Only about 35 percent of large businesses plan to move up to the latest version of Microsoft's Office software next year, according to a new survey of chief information officers. A more interesting question to me would be, what do these CIOs think they are describing when they talk about Office...

Bill Gates may have unwittingly rankled a few ISVs this fall while showing off Outlook 2003 at the glitzy launch of Office System. Busy highlighting new features in Outlook, Microsoft's chairman and chief software architect briefly turned to the audience and offered this aside: "You know, a lot...

It is great to finally have this news in the open....for months, it has seemed that some MS customers believed that Netmeeting was going to be the continued right solution for them, despite scalability issues, lack of updates, etc. I guess the patent infringement lawsuit was the last straw, eh?...

Administrators of e-mail systems based on Microsoft's Exchange might have spammers using their servers to send unsolicited bulk e-mail under their noses, a consultant warned this week. Aaron Greenspan, a Harvard University junior and president of consulting company Think Computer, published ...

How I let this sit in my inbox ignored for a week, I'm not sure....The notion that Microsoft might abandon .NET is especially troubling for vendors who have wrapped their product strategies around the .NET brand. ISVs are confused when they perceive that Microsoft is apparently dropping a brand...

Network Computing is running a sneak preview review of SharePoint Portal 2003. This hands-on review exposes some of the disconnects between the product marketing and implementation.... If you are a Microsoft shop looking for a portal and you can live with the severely limited document managem...

This week Microsoft executives opened the door to a possible shift in that strategy at least with respect to Kodiak, the next-generation Exchange Server. While the plan remains to put Kodiak on the WinFS relational store, business pressures could abrogate that decision, the executives conceded...

This is where trackback would be kinda useful.... Volker linked to a blog on Dan Gillmor's eJournal about Microsoft's digital rights management capabilities in Office 2003. Being the anti-MS lemming that I am, I dutifully followed over, and even added some comments. I was surprised to see th...

Thank you, Sarbanes-Oxley

October 23 2003

Then: "REDMOND, Wash., July 23, 2002 -- In a position shift for the worldwide integrated collaborative environments (ICEs) industry, Microsoft Exchange Server has leaped past IBM Corp. as the leader." Now: "Redmond, Wash. , Oct. 23, 2003 ... "In addition, with over 120 million seats sold...

In case you thought I was ignoring today's Office 2003 launch, I'm not... First, I blogged about it on lotus.com -- probably one of the edgier postings I've put up there in a while. Second, I wrote a pretty strong editorial for IBM's Intranet -- nice to get an audience size of 330,000 on the t...

Exchange 2003 launch Q&A

October 21 2003

Wow, I'm excited. Customers are saying, "Hey, it's fantastic that you're making these complementary products all work together and releasing them at the same time."Gee, I remember when MS's competitive people used to beat Lotus up for shipping client and server simultaneously, suggesting that...

This seems to be becoming a common theme in reviews of Office 2003...When Microsoft has already jammed so many features into earlier versions, why bother upgrading to this year's model? That's true more than ever in Office 2003, in stores Tuesday for Windows XP and 2000. The one component to get...

So much for "better together": Microsoft's strategy of increasingly integrating its server and client products -- as best evidenced by the Office System line-up which officially launches next week -- means some enterprises may end up paying 10 to 40 percent more to stay with Redmond's wares, a...

The Israeli Ministry of Commerce has suspended all governmental contracts with Microsoft, and indicated that the ban will last throughout 2004. The de facto suspension means no upgrades for the duration, at a time when Microsoft is looking to roll out its Office 2003 upgrade; and the Ministry is...

Gartner has issued a report suggesting that customers diversify their IT infrastructure away from a single vendor operating environment. The Gartner research note does not argue that Microsoft operating systems are inherently less secure, just that absolute reliance on only Windows computers c...

But if you want my advice, stay out of that trap, for a trap is exactly what it is. Look closely at some of the cool new features in Office 2003. Almost all of them will require you to upgrade your desktops and your servers. Almost every cool feature won't work with older versions of Office. Ar...

A pretty direct quote from MS that confirms Office 2003's "rip and replace" nature: ...Office 2003's breakthrough features -- its ability to let workers collaborate on intelligent work files -- work only by hooking into Microsoft's latest server products. Such high-end files can update themselv...

This is the one of the first hands-on reviews I've seen of the product.... Since LCS's beta introduction, there's been concern about its networking requirements. Early reports indicated that the server-to-server exchanges were very chatty, and that bandwidth-saving features, such as being able...

Prompted by AtStake's firing of Dan Geer for contributing to a paper critical of Microsoft, Philip Greenspun, who doesn't quite have a resume on his pages but appears to be an MIT engineering professor, has started a quite active discussion of some of the reasons why people dislike Microsoft....

On my flight home from Boston last night, I was reading the New York Times review of MS Office 2003. The net-net of the article -- the core applications are hardly worth upgrading, but the changes to Outlook alone make the upgrade worth it. I don't dispute that Microsoft has done some things...

The Computer and Communications Industry Association is not holding their tongue.... CCIA sent out the following letter to Secretary Tom Ridge on the Department of Homeland Security's recent decision to choose Microsoft as the preferred supplier of desktop and server software. We believe that ...

Microsoft is using an interesting approach to launch Office Live Meeting (nee Placeware) next week. According to the launch page, Group VP Anoop Gupta will "conduct a true cross-country crusade" to declare the end of unnecessary business travel. Not a bad approach, though probably not as co...

As Microsoft embraces a corporate-wide Trustworthy Computing initiative, more people are finding themselves on the losing side of a relationship. Bill Gates last year sent a memo to staff and customers laying out Microsoft's mission to make Windows software more trustworthy. But the time, mon...

I'm surprised I haven't seen this week's Cringley report linked to anywhere else. The column describes a court hearing in the case of Burst v. Microsoft. It should really be called "Stupid Microsoft Legal Tricks" when you read about the unbelievable story the MS lawyers told. When Burst's lawy...

I've been working on my first major Linux project in the last week. Having to learn a lot in a very short period of time. Good stuff. [corrected a typo, kind of a funny one, here] One of the things I'm learning is just how mainstream Linux is really becoming. eWeek's Steven Vaughan-Nichols...

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From Times Online, via Matt: Microsoft's plan is to introduce a special "safe" environment as part of a wider effort to develop what it calls "next generation secure computing base". Mr Eckert added: "We aim to create an environment in which you can run unknown code securely, and so prevent...

Talk about waiting to the last possible minute.... Microsoft announced today that they will extend mainstream support for Exchange 5.5 another year, to 31/12/04. They had previously done the same for Windows NT 4.0. I can't say I'm totally surprised. First, I never believed MS's claims that...

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I'm watching you... Microsoft has updated their website pages that cover Exchange and some of the other servers. Now branded "Windows Server System"...guess that whole ".NET Servers" thing is really dead now. What's really interesting is that there's a section of that Exchange website that'...