David Overton's Blog and Discussion Site
This site is my way to share my views and general business and IT information with you about Microsoft, IT solutions for ISVs, technologists and businesses, large and small. I specialise in Windows Intune and SBS 2008.
This blog is purely the personal opinions of David Overton. If you can't find the information you were looking for e-mail me at admin@davidoverton.com.

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  • UK / EMEA Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) Practice Accelerator, 16th April, Live Meeting 4 day course

    I saw this and thought I should share it ASAP. Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) Practice Accelerator, 16th April, Live Meeting Description: 4 day organisational training for partners interested in developing a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure practice. Can be paid for using advisory hours. Microsoft Virtual Desktop Infrastructure empowers enterprises with unified management of centralized desktops and corporate data through Microsoft System Center technology. Microsoft VDI offers tremendous value by providing a high performance virtual desktop platform while reducing the cost of deploying virtual desktops. Citrix technology adds value to the Microsoft VDI stack by offering additional scale and flexibility. Take Practice Accelerator for VDI and help your customers extend existing management tools and processes to the virtual desktop environment while reducing management overhead, enabling rapid deployment, improving operational efficiencies and driving business agility. Ten Partner Advisory Hours will be deducted from your organization's balance when you register. You must cancel your registration 72 hours prior the start of the session to receive a refund on your advisory hours. If your organization has available advisory hours but has not attained a silver or gold competency, contact Partner Technical Services for assistance with registration. Prerequisites: For more information on requirements, please see our information on prerequisites. https://partner.microsoft.com/40128260 – the section for this course are extracted below: PRACTICE ACCELERATOR PRE-REQUISITES:  Practice Accelerator provides intermediate- to advanced-level training in engagement management for deployments. Ideal candidates are engagement managers, consultants, and project managers, and should have a basic knowledge of the technology. Practice Accelerator is not a deep technical training on the solution. Practice Accelerator provides partners with the resources and guidance to help build a services practice.  Partners looking for...
  • Various recent VDI related whitepapers - Citrix, Microsoft, Cisco, NetApp and AppSense (not all together in all whitepapers)

    I believe that Citrix XenDesktop and Microsoft Hyper-V offer the best VDI experience and System Center the best management solution for this configuration (as well as many others).  I work with NetApp and have becoming increasingly impressed by the NetApp / Cisco offerings – FlexPod and then when combined with Citrix / XenDesktop, a killer proposition for easy, reliable VDI.  I’ve also included AppSense in the mix as I’ve also been working with them around their User State Virtualisation technology and where it fits both VDI and physical desktops. These whitepapers overlap various aspects of the above, so here they are: Reference Architecture-Based Design Citrix XenDesktop Built on FlexPod Using Cisco Unified Computing System, Microsoft Hyper-V, and NetApp Storage Some of the key points are: The hosting of Citrix XenDesktop Hosted Virtual Desktops (VDI) and Hosted Shared Virtual Desktops models and FlexCast with Microsoft Hyper-V on Cisco UCS B-Series Blade Servers and NetApp storage were successfully validated. The validated environment consisted of a completely virtualized infrastructure with virtual machines hosted by Microsoft Hyper-V. All the virtual desktop and supporting infrastructure components including Active Directory, Citrix Provisioning Server, and the Citrix XenDesktop Desktop Delivery Controllers were hosted in a virtual machine environment on Microsoft Hyper-V. The tested design showed linear scalability when expanding from 1 server to 16 servers. The performance testing showed that the same user desktop experience and response times were achieved with 110 desktops running on 1 server as with 1760 desktops running on 16 servers. The integrated management model and rapid provisioning capabilities of Cisco UCS Manager makes it easy for scaling the number of desktops from small pilots on a single UCS chassis to very large organization-wide deployments running on tens of chassis. The testing validates that the tested reference architecture can scale linearly from 1 chassis to 4 chassis and beyond...
  • How to Address Internet Explorer 6 Incompatibility Issues with Windows 7

    I’ve seen several people try to resolve Windows 7 and IE6 compatibility issues through methods that are not only not supported, but also against the Microsoft IP licensing rules (e.g. removing it from Windows XP and forcing onto Windows 7).  Using a Windows Server 2003 Terminal Server and Citrix or Quest it is possible to put in place a low cost solution where IE is remoted (so you only see the IE 6 browser window, not the whole desktop) on a Windows 7 system.  The pages that require IE6 are shown this way, while other pages are shown locally with IE8/9. You can learn about the Citrix solution here or here for a solution from Quest.  A good write up on the options can be found here - http://www.virtualizationpractice.com/blog/?p=13493 . ttfn David
  • Remote Desktop Services (RDS) and XenApp 6.x Desktop Virtualization Optimization Guide for Windows Server 2008 R2

    Hi, I know that I have mentioned before that Citrix is one of the partners I work with.  Citrix add a huge amount of value to Microsoft Server 2008 R2 Remote Desktop Services and have done so for Windows since before the NT4 days of Terminal Server Edition. They have just released their latest document on optimisations that can be found at CTX131577 - XenApp 6.x Desktop Virtualization - Optimization Guide - Citrix Knowledge Center .   Enjoy! David
  • New role–Enablement Partner strategy

    I thought I would share some details of my new role at Microsoft, which is still as a Partner Account Manager, but also responsible for the Enablement Partner strategy.  Obviously this is my day job with my author and blogging work still being a personal project for the evenings and weekends. So what are Enablement Partners you may ask?  Well they are partners who provide technology or services that help a customer (or another partner) deploy their chosen Microsoft technology, but do not deliver the project itself.  This may sound complex, so let me give you some examples: AppSense provide a host of technology, but it is around managing the user so they have a great experience no matter which device they log into and their profile flows between these devices, regardless of which version of Windows they are using (XP, Vista, 7, Server, 64-bit, 32-bit).  The direction is forwards and backwards.  They also offer many other benefits such as locking down licenses to specific devices which is frequently an issue for Project and Visio in an RDS environment.  Customers use this before, during and after upgrades to Windows 7, where a user can still use and update their profile on XP, for example. ChangeBase help customers ready their applications for migration, enabling remediation, packaging and certainty to an often complex area.  App-DNA provide an overlap of capabilities and both partners offering unique differences and benefits to customers and partners – I’m not going to try to differentiate either here. Both and excellent partners and both can easily explain their uniqueness and why you should use them without my help.  Customers often need to do this work before embarking on a migration to Windows 7 or a new version of Quest enable customers to manage, consolidate and migrate from non-Microsoft and legacy communication and collaboration systems to modern Exchange or Office 365.  This can be delivered with Microsoft tools, but frequently Quest simplify this process. ...
  • Microsoft and Citrix VDI and Terminal Server solutions at iForum – early bird discount until end of April

    I will be at iForum again this year representing Microsoft (with others). We will be presenting the joint VDI and Terminal Server solutions from Microsoft and Citrix, which includes Access Essentials for customers of less than 75 users. if you would like to attend, snap up the early bird discount. Here is the “blurb” Reducing costs, improving efficiencies and increasing performance is a challenge for any business…but Microsoft and Citrix can help. Citrix and Microsoft have decades of experience working together to provide customers a range of solutions which deliver choice, flexibility and cost savings. Our joint solutions to dynamically deliver desktop service and applications to uses wherever they are is based on tight integration of Citrix solutions with Window Server 2008, Hyper-V server virtualisation and terminal services / presentation virtualisation, and with the System Center management tools especially Virtual Machine Manager. Microsoft is proud to be a platinum sponsor at this year’s Citrix iForum 2009 event taking place in Edinburgh 15 th – 17 th June at the International Conference Centre – so register your place today and take advantage of the early bird discount that has been extended until the 30 th April http://www.citrixiforumedinburgh.com/?VOUCHER_CODE=MSFT1 Thanks David Technorati Tags: Citrix , Microsoft , VDI , Terminal Services , Access Essentials
  • Citrix Access Essentials, SBS 2008, EBS 2008 and you - Birmingham, 10th Feb

    As many of you know I work with Citrix in the UK. While their product is not appropriate for 100% of the SBS & EBS market, if you would like to know more about the opportunity when you are a Citrix Partner and specifically about Access Essentials for SBS and EBS, you should attend this event. There is also a great prize too :-) If you want to see a blog all about Citrix then look at their official blog here and if you want to see someone in the community talking about his area then look at Brian Madden's info here. www.citrixpartneraccelerator.co.uk Find out how your business could join the fast lane in 2009 by becoming a Citrix partner. It's an exciting time to be part of the Citrix Partner Network™: in the last year we launched new virtualisation solutions, expanded our partnerships with the world's top hardware and software vendors and added new incentives to channel programmes. At our Citrix Partner Accelerator event, you'll learn how these investments could help you develop your business - by offering your customers the most powerful and comprehensive value-added application delivery infrastructure solutions in the market. Get up to speed with Citrix We'll bring you up to speed with the latest Citrix vision and strategy and give you the inside track on new Citrix and partner offerings that could help you stay competitive in 2009. Understand the latest developments within Citrix and in the wider market with keynote speeches from senior Citrix executives. Learn how you can develop new business opportunities by working together with Citrix. Experience the newest application delivery infrastructure solutions through demonstrations and proof of concepts in the technical sessions. Connect with Citrix employees, Citrix Distributors and Citrix Alliance Partners who could transform the way you do business. Focused Workshops for new resellers on developing your business with Citrix, plus a Citrix Access Essentials for Microsoft focused partners and a Citrix strategic sales workshop for those...

(c)David Overton 2006-13