Microsoft Isn’t Just Connecting Lync with Skype, it’s Re-humanizing Communications

Brad Shimmin
Brad Shimmin

Summary Bullets:

• Microsoft has begun to pull together its consumer and enterprise communications platforms with direct points of integration for presence, chat and audio.

• Such interactivity, however, requires the use of Microsoft’s historically consumer-oriented ID system (formerly branded Windows Live ID), blurring the lines between corporate and consumer personas.

Rome was not built in a day (or so I’ve been told). So too, Microsoft’s planned work to fully unify Lync and Skype will take some time before it reaches fruition – sometime in 2014 to be a tad more specific. That’s when these two products will at last allow users from both sides to share video conferencing services. Microsoft’s first step along this path began a few weeks ago with address book integration. Skype users can now add Lync users (via invitation, mind you) to their address books and vice-versa. This allows both parties to share presence and initiate audio and chat sessions with one another. Certainly, there’s a long way to go from this to a fully unified experience for both users and administrators alike. But as with so many things, including most Microsoft engineering efforts, if you wait at the bus stop long enough, soon enough your bus will arrive. Continue reading “Microsoft Isn’t Just Connecting Lync with Skype, it’s Re-humanizing Communications”

Finding the Missing Lync in Campus SDN

Mike Fratto
Mike Fratto

Summary Bullets:

  • The focus of software defined networking (SDN) may be on the data center and carrier networks, but that doesn’t mean campus LANs can’t benefit as well.
  • New technologies need a compelling reason for IT to adopt them and SDN is no different. Sure, data centers have issues that SDN can address, but users see choppy video and voice as much more urgent problems to solve.

For many, SDN is a data center and service provider play because those two areas have unique scalability and versatility demands that SDN is well suited to address. There is as much value in the campus LAN as well, and I suspect that we’ll start seeing many more reasons why SDN in the campus makes sense. Two recent examples from Aruba and Extreme both involving integration of Microsoft’s Lync unified communications software are illustrative of why. Continue reading “Finding the Missing Lync in Campus SDN”

What Does Management Mean to You, How Big is It, & Can It Be Done?

 

Mike Spanbauer
Mike Spanbauer
  • The IT management toolkit consists of at least a dozen or more management tools to address element management, event stream correlation and trending, business process automation, virtualization control, to name a few, it’s a complex task to integrate and one that falls to consulting or the DevOps.
  • APIs and pre-tested integrations will become priority feature enterprises will evaluate when making technology decisions.

Gone are the days of being able to choose a point management product for a specific problem or vendor device and installing that parallel to other, dedicated task tools.  Today’s IT management buy centers must also evaluate the integrations with their existing toolsets, many of which were not tested by the vendor.  Network management vendors partner programs assist in integration and testing with other vendors but are limited to a small subset of third parties that joined the program.   These systems include element management, virtualization software, an event framework for operations and security streams, server and storage optimization tools, network tools, business process toolsets all of which should, but may not work together today.  The list of an average enterprise management software is much longer, rarely integrated well, and a hurdle to greater IT efficiency.  Much of this integration falls to a role that has always been a jack-of-all (integration) trades, the DevOps administrator. Continue reading “What Does Management Mean to You, How Big is It, & Can It Be Done?”