System Center Pricing and Licensing Update – January 2010 Live Meeting on January 27, 11:00 am – 12:00 pm EST


Understand the key System Center pricing and licensing changes and how to use them in your conversations with customers to sell today. This session will bring together all of the recent changes we’ve communicated and help you position this news in your accounts. We’ll cover System Center changes in the ECAL, the new Client Management Suite, SMSE & SMSD changes, and upcoming product launches including Service Manager. We’ll also provide a quick recap of the System Center licensing model along with resources for the field to assist you with your customers’ pricing and licensing.

Click here to register for the session

For additional training resources on System Center click here

Microsoft Canada Technology Partner Training : System Center Pricing and Licensing Update – January 2010 Live Meeting on January 27, 11:00 am – 12:00 pm EST

Increasing the F5 Management Pack’s Responsiveness for Statistics Collection


With the recent release (v1.6.1.212), the F5 Management Pack has an improved responsiveness to device statistics collection. By default, the timer interval for collecting stats is set to 30 seconds, but this value now can be easily overwritten in the (SCOM 2007) F5 Management Pack, as a rule override. The lowest value the timer interval could be set, theoretically, is 3 seconds. There is an internal safeguard in the F5 device (Big-IP) against lowering this threshold and putting unnecessary load on the device CPU, for collecting stats. In the real world stats would come, on average, every 5-10 seconds, even with the 3 second interval setting.

Increasing the F5 Management Pack's Responsiveness for Statistics Collection

The Operations Manager Support Team Blog : Fix: A push installation of the OpsMgr 2007 agent on a computer that is running Terminal Services may time out


On a computer that is running Terminal Services, when you try to use a push operation to install the Microsoft System Center Operations Manager 2007 Agent the operation may time out, therefore the System Center Operations Manager 2007 Agent is not installed successfully.

The Operations Manager Support Team Blog : Fix: A push installation of the OpsMgr 2007 agent on a computer that is running Terminal Services may time out

Understanding Today’s News from Microsoft and HP


By now, you have likely seen the news that Microsoft and HP are expanding their 25 year partnership. Over the next three years, the companies will invest $250 million to help customers and partners substantially improve the customer experience for developing, deploying and managing today’s IT environments, and building next generation cloud applications.

Customers will see this investment spent in three key efforts:

· Joint engineering roadmap and set of technology offerings.

· Joint sales and marketing to help educate customers and arm the channel.

· Joint professional services to aid customers in getting the most out of their investments.

As part of its joint engineering roadmap and joint offerings, Microsoft and HP will collaborate on: 

1. Virtualization:

· Microsoft is now a preferred provider of virtualization solutions for HP, which will make it easier for a broader set of customers to deploy virtualization solutions that can improve server utilization by as much as 10x and reduce provisioning ties from months to minutes. 

· Microsoft and HP will deliver ‘Smart Bundles’ for small and medium businesses. These are a combination of hardware and software, including HP server, storage and networking solutions, coupled with Windows Server Hyper-V and HP Insight software, delivered in a single, cost-effective package. 

2. Management:

· HP now has the rights to resell and ship System Center as part of HP’s solutions.  This solution will be tuned, integrated and ready for customers.

· And coming soon, HP’s Insight Software and Business Technology Optimization solutions will begin to integrate and interoperate with Microsoft’s System Center suite of products.  This means that customers with heterogeneous computing environments will be able to more easily and more cost-effectively manage hardware and software from Microsoft and non-Microsoft operating systems and applications. 

3. Business Applications :

· The companies will deliver a set of pre-packaged and pre-configured data management and email solutions (‘machines’) that will deliver data warehousing, business intelligence, online transaction processing (OLTP) and messaging solutions.

4. The Cloud:

· HP and Microsoft will collaborate on the Windows Azure platform, with HP offering services, and Microsoft continuing to include HP hardware for Windows Azure infrastructure. 

Microsoft and HP detailed plans to increase opportunities for its 32,000 HP and Microsoft Frontline channel partners through extensive joint sales and marketing programs.  

These plans include a 10x increase of investment by both companies to help partners modernize their customers’ environments through a combination of software and hardware packages and services.  Just a few of the benefits partners will receive include:

· Simplified sales cycles resulting from Smart Bundles and all-inclusive packages will increase time-to-revenue and create add-on application and service sales opportunities.

· Flexible financing options through HP Financial Services, will enable resellers to make technology solutions more accessible and easy to acquire.

· Support from dedicated field resources will help with pre-sales initiatives and partner training.

· Jointly funded worldwide marketing campaigns, lead generation programs and sales tools, available at

Finally, Microsoft and HP detailed plans to provide an integrated portfolio of joint professional services. Through more than 11,000 Microsoft-certified HP professionals worldwide, HP Services organizations, in partnership with Microsoft Services, will support the integrated hardware and software solutions from simple implementations to the most critical enterprise infrastructure. Just some of the service offerings include:

· Strategy workshops, ROI and business value services.

· Architecture, design, pilot, global implementation, support for server virtualization and management solutions, client virtualization, data management, and cloud computing.

· Per-seat fixed price Microsoft Exchange Server upgrade/migration services.

· Assistance for customers who seek to run their technology on-premises, outsourced or via the cloud.

To sum it up, this agreement represents the industry’s most comprehensive end-to-end integrated technology stack across hardware and software — from infrastructure to application. Through this long term partnership, Microsoft and HP are helping customers reduce costs and get the most of their investments today, as they prepare for a future of business computing in the cloud.

Server and Tools Business News Bytes blog : Understanding Today’s News from Microsoft and HP

News and Perspectives from Microsoft : HP, Microsoft and the Future of IT


Posted by Brad Anderson
Corporate Vice President, Management And Services Division

Today Microsoft and HP announced some great news for customers and partners of our infrastructure software and server applications: a $250 million engineering, sales and services partnership to advance cloud computing and help customers better use IT for business success. You can read the press release and watch videos of executives commenting on the agreement here.

This is a broad, far-reaching agreement with a range of components, building on our 25-year partnership with HP and ongoing efforts to deliver what we call Dynamic IT. As one of the main architects of the agreement, I wanted to provide some insights about what it means for customers and partners.

This is clearly a big commitment on our part. Overall, our intent is to deliver no less than a next-generation computing platform. The goal is to lead the adoption of cloud computing while helping companies realize immediate business benefits through IT. With this partnership the two companies are working toward new models for application delivery, hardware architecture and IT operations.

Together HP and Microsoft will deliver a deeply integrated IT stack for business applications. We are driving architectural innovation that connects IT infrastructure to applications for better performance, reliability and availability of the industry’s top business applications with push-button simplicity – all at a lower cost of ownership than ever before.

For example, pre-integrated hardware, software and application solutions, based on HP Converged Infrastructure and optimized for Microsoft Exchange 2010, will help customers boost employee productivity and protect sensitive information at a lower cost per mailbox.

Key to this deal is integrating virtualization and systems management across heterogeneous datacenter and cloud environments. Seamless management for both physical and virtualized systems will provide automatic provisioning, power management and self-tuning, which together will help customers streamline the deployment of new business capabilities across their companies.

For example, we’re integrating HP’s Insight Software and Business Technology Optimization software portfolio with Microsoft’s System Center suite. That will enable customers to uniformly manage virtualized IT services in mixed datacenter environments, which will dramatically simplify management for administrators and increases their contribution to the business.

We’re excited about our joint engineering roadmap and commitment to innovation for both today and the future. I feel strongly that this partnership will give customers the confidence to deploy new business solutions using IT they already have in place, and take advantage of the new world of private and public cloud resources. Case in point: HP and Microsoft will collaborate on the Windows Azure platform, with HP offering services and Microsoft continuing to invest in HP hardware for Windows Azure infrastructure.

The partnership also entails big investments in HP Technology Services and Microsoft Services to provide design, implementation and support for our joint technologies. And we are increasing our joint investment in our HP/Microsoft Frontline channel partner network by 10 times, empowering partners to help customers implement and manage the solutions.

This is a big day for Microsoft and HP. More importantly, it represents the beginning of a new period of opportunity and possibilities for customers and partners worldwide.

The Microsoft Blog – News and Perspectives from Microsoft : HP, Microsoft and the Future of IT

BWren’s Management Space : Management Pack Authoring Guide v2


After 13 years of consulting, I joined the UA team in Redmond last August as a technical writer focusing on management pack authoring.  My initial focus is a new version of the Management Pack Authoring Guide which will provide background concepts, processes, and specific walkthrough examples on creating management packs for Operations Manager 2007.

BWren's Management Space : Management Pack Authoring Guide v2

Management Pack Catalog on PinPoint – the poll results so far…

As you may or may not know, we’re running a poll to show community thoughts about Microsoft moving the OpsMgr 2007 Management Pack catalog to their new PinPoint technology.  As we noted before, the thoughts have been mixed, and our poll so far is reflecting that.

Here’s a quick sampling so far:

What do you think of the new OpsMgr 2007 Management Pack catalog on PinPoint? (feel free to leave comments)
Love it! Great move Microsoft!
Could be useful. I'll wait and see how it works out.
What the–?? Who did this?
I hate it! Put it back!


And, the number one comments is:

Sorting by release date is not available anymore which is a big pain. And the categories filter is not that intuitive.


So, while the poll numbers suggest that this wasn’t a great move in the minds of those who relied on the old catalog, I think it also suggests (through the comments) that Microsoft could provide some immediate improvement just by adding a sorting mechanism by release date.

Do you feel the same?  Drop out and participate in the poll: