Microsoft announce the retirement of System Center Global Service Monitor. Currently an SA benefit for System Center customers, this service will retire on 7 November, 2018 and customers are recommended to move to web application monitoring capabilities powered by Azure Application Insights. Current GSM customers will be notified of the retirement, and may migrate tests and alert rules to Azure Application Insights at no cost.
Find the announcement and some FAQs here: http://bit.ly/2JeRh9u.
Microsoft announce that the E-Learning Software Assurance benefit is being replaced with Microsoft Learn, a completely free service for any customer to learn Microsoft products and services. Beginning 1st November 2018, current content and portals available to Software Assurance E-Learning customers will be retired, and access to current courses, transcripts, completion certificates and administrative tools residing on those sites will be unavailable.
Find the announcement here: http://bit.ly/2OTERcb, with links to currently available courses and an FAQ.
Skype for Business Online features and functionality are moving into Microsoft Teams. From a licensing perspective, additional services such as Audio Conferencing and Phone System will continue to be Add-on licences, and from a technical perspective from 1st October, 2018 new Office 365 customers with less than 500 seats will be onboarded to Microsoft Teams and will have no access to Skype for Business Online.
This is a useful FAQ with lots of information on the whole Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams upgrade topic: http://bit.ly/2pL5Rwz.
Dynamics 365 Business Central, the all-in-one ERP business management solution aimed at small and medium businesses, was released as a cloud solution in April 2018. Now (October 2018) it’s available as an on-premises solution, replacing the Dynamics NAV product. It’s only available through the Dynamics Price List (DPL) and the licensing is explained in a Licensing Guide which you can find on the PartnerSource portal here: http://bit.ly/2RxQrIv.
Customers who license the on-premises solution may move to the cloud solution by purchasing Business Central Cloud Add-on licences. Premium and Team Member Add-ons are available and one or the other must be acquired for all Business Central On-Premises users. Find details on page 90 of the October 2018 Product Terms document.
In addition, existing Business Central cloud users licensed with active User Subscription Licences may install the Business Central On-Premises server software and access it under their current licences. Find details on page 21 of the October 2018 Online Services Terms document.
The Product Terms and Online Services Terms documents are updated monthly and you can find the current and archived versions here: http://bit.ly/MSproductterms.
Microsoft announce Windows Virtual Desktop, which will allow customers to run a full Windows 10 desktop that’s optimised for Office 365 ProPlus, delivered on Azure. Access to Windows Virtual Desktop will be included in the following User SLs: Microsoft 365 E3, E5 or F1, and Windows 10 E3 or E5, with the only additional costs being storage and compute consumption from the virtual machines themselves.
The service will be in preview soon – use this page to stay up to date: http://bit.ly/2zQJD22, and find the original announcement here: http://bit.ly/2xYfHzo.
An attractive option for EA customers moving to Microsoft 365 E3/E5 is to buy the From SA User SL. As long as you have active SA on all of the desktop components you’re eligible for this cheaper licence.
If you have perpetual licences you retain the rights to use the desktop products at the last version (or any earlier version) when you transitioned.
The standard use rights of the From SA User SL don’t include the rights to install any newer version of the Office Professional Plus product, and for the last few years there’s been an exception that DOES allow this.
However, text in the October 2018 Product Terms (page 55) states that this benefit comes to an end for new or renewing customers on 1 January, 2019.
Download the Product Terms every month here: http://bit.ly/MSproductterms.
Since September 2017 there have been two options for customers buying Windows 10 Enterprise E3 User SLs in CSP: a Local Only SKU which (not surprisingly) allowed just local installation of Windows 10 Enterprise E3, and a full SKU which included the additional rights to run Windows 10 Enterprise E3 in a hosted virtual desktop. From 1 October, 2018 the Local Only SKU will be retired and the price of the full SKU will be reduced to an ERP of $7 per user per month to match the previous Local Only SKU price. Find the announcement and a link to an FAQ here: http://bit.ly/2NmAemn.
Microsoft announce that Dynamics 365 for Marketing is now available in an additional 33 languages and is also geographically available in all current Dynamics 365 markets.
In addition, the pricing has changed so that organizations no longer have to count ALL the contact records in their Dynamics 365 database from a licensing perspective. Now, it’s sufficient to count just the contacts that will be engaged with via a marketing activity such as emails, events and surveys. For most organizations, this will reduce the licensing costs.
Find the announcement here: http://bit.ly/2O4FSPj.
Microsoft announce that Office 2019 for Windows and Mac is available from 24 September, 2018.
The announcement page (http://bit.ly/2DRaPSo) has some useful links to FAQs on both the new features and the new technology to deploy it – Click-to-Run.
There’s also confirmation that Exchange Server 2019, Skype for Business Server 2019, SharePoint Server 2019, and Project Server 2019 will be released in the coming weeks.
Microsoft announce that Windows Server 2019 is available for download from VLSC: http://bit.ly/2IzPATQ.
There’s also a Licensing Datasheet available where you’ll see that the basic licensing model is unchanged: servers are licensed per core with packs of 2 or 16 Core licences available, and a minimum of 8 Core licences assigned to a processor, and 16 to a server. CALs are required for users or devices accessing the services of the server.
The datasheet also confirms that there’s a 10% price increase for Windows Server 2019 Standard Core licences, and gives a nice overview of the Servicing Channels.
Find the datasheet here: http://bit.ly/MSLicensingGuides.