State of the Union: Microsoft's Windows 10 Upgrade Strategy

Since Windows 10 was released with much fanfare as the 'last Windows', Microsoft has made many changes to its servicing model, terminology, and support schedule — causing much confusion among its customers, IT admins, and C-level executives.

One could say that change is a constant with Windows-as-a-Service, and not only with its much smaller, continuous updates. In just over 4 years and 7 feature update releases, Microsoft has repeatedly changed the naming conventions for updates as well as how long they will be in service for, and has extended the EOL dates and support windows — which, initially, they said they wouldn't do.

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Coming Soon: Access Capture Version 3 — What You Need To Know (Part 1)

I am very excited to share with you that on November 14th, 2019, we are officially launching our new version (V3) of Access Capture, our enterprise application packaging and testing automation solution.

We have added some very exciting features, and there are significant platform changes. I cannot wait to share all the upgrades with you — so I am giving you a two-part preview of the most critical updates.

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Agile IT Planning & Deployments To Drive Digital Transformation

According to Gartner, Digital Transformation is one of THE hottest topics right now.

In a recent Gartner survey, 62% of CEOs said they have an initiative in place to make their organizations more “digital.” To support their customer engagement, businesses need to primarily solve three issues:

  • How to handle suddenly spiking demands and demand volatility cost-effectively,
  • How to support a much greater variety of product and services reliably, and
  • How to quickly adapt to changes in customer tastes and demands when it comes to product features and/or channel.
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SCCM 2007 Goes EoL In July 2019 — 5 Things You Have To Know Before Installing SCCM 1902

On July 9th, 2019, Microsoft's iconic device management solution, System Center Configuration Manager 2007 — officially known as Configuration Manager (ConfigMgr) or affectionately referred to as SCCM within most IT departments — will be retired after 12 long years of support.

To avoid running unsupported (and therefore unsafe) versions of your device management infrastructure, Microsoft recommends a migration to the Current Branch model of SCCM as soon as possible. But there are a few things you should know before migrating.

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5 Reasons Why Service Integrators Should Embrace IT Automation, Rather Than Fear It

A few years ago before Access IT Automation was founded, I had a very insightful conversation with a Head of Client Services of one of the big service integrators in my role as the CEO of Access, our IT Managed Service Provider.

This conversation stuck with me all these years because it addressed an all-too common pain point all SIs are struggling with: having "warm bums on seats" isn't a scalable business model to keep pace with the ever-accelerating velocity of IT transformation!

On the contrary, Service Integrators find themselves stuck in a situation where customers are demanding innovation to drive real IT transformation, and simply hiring more people won't cut it.

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Example Case Study Of Credential Guard & Oracle Java GSS API Support On Windows 10

For the past years, users that have the new Windows 10 security feature, Credential Guard, enabled were experiencing issues when it blocked third-party software from accessing the user's credentials. While not well documented, the biggest issue arises when common Java applications using the JDK for GSS API are not allowed to have access to the tokens anymore and therefore block the Single Sign-On (SSO).

Before we take a closer look at the issue itself, let's go through how Credential Guard works in more detail.

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Application Packaging & Testing Automation: Expectations vs. Reality

When it comes to automation, there is often a big gap between expectation and reality — often in the sense of "all or nothing". For example, doomsday scenarios have been painted and purport that automation is a direct replacement for human labor and will put hundreds of millions out of a job. In reality, only about 7.4% of jobs are actually at risk for being replaced through technology, algorithms, bots, or artificial intelligence.

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Are You Impacted By The VMWare Version Upgrade To Support Credential Guard?

With each new release of Windows 10, Microsoft adds new features and security enhancements — and with those come new issues for IT teams. With virtualization becoming the norm for organizations, from large enterprises down to mid-size businesses, interactions and dependencies on multiple systems within an IT landscape can become mission critical, having effects on security and digital innovation.

For organizations that rely on cloud services and virtual machines, the risk of deficiencies in their IT environment increases with each new release. One such deficiency, which many organizations might not even be aware of, is that  VMWare versions older than the just released version 6.7 are not supported on Windows 10 with Windows Defender Credential Guard. In this post we will discuss why this is important and what it means to your organization.

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3 Inevitable Trends That Will Impact Your Application Packaging & Testing Strategy In 2019/2020

For many, the next 12-24 months mark an important milestone for their application packaging and testing strategy as they move from traditional, manually-driven application packaging to a more automated and continuous process to satisfy the demands of their faster-than-ever evolving IT environment.

Now that most Windows 10 migrations are well under way or completed, many enterprises are turning their attention to creating a (hopefully) repeatable, automated, and scalable Windows-as-a-Service management process. To do so successfully, enterprises are recognizing that app testing, certification, and packaging must fit into their larger Evergreen IT environment, must be automated, and must include a modernization strategy to MSIx. 

Today, I want to take a closer look at each of those three trends in more detail.

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Strategic Roadmap: Your MSIX Adoption Path With Access Capture

A few days ago, we talked about how mature MSIX really is (18 months away) and how it make sense for some enterprises to do a double hop over App-V to ease the transition. Today, I want to take you on a little journey that will take us three years into the future. 

While Access CAPTURE does already fully support MSIX as a packaging standard, I want to also show you the most effective roadmap to adopting it enterprise-wide over the next years. The ultimate goal is to have you up and running on a smooth Evergreen IT/Windows-as-a-Service Management path by the end of the first year and all your applications in MSIX by the end of year three.

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