PlexHosted Announces Cloud Based Hosting Support for SharePoint Server 2016 Multi-Tenant and Dedicated Server Services

SharePoint 2016 at PlexHostedToday, PLEXHOSTED LLC, a Microsoft Cloud Solutions Provider and managed services hosting company, is announcing the availability of Microsoft’s hosted SharePoint Server 2016 for multi-tenant site collection and dedicated farm versions. The multi-tenant site collection version provides the lowest price entry point for SharePoint 2016 customers, while the dedicated version provides full white-label customer branding and control of the SharePoint farm through unfettered access to Central Administration. PLEXHOSTED has deployed SharePoint Server 2016 to work how you work – providing scale and performance capabilities to grow with and meet your unique business requirements.

In making the announcement, PLEXHOSTED Chief Technology Officer Michael Starostin said, “We are seeing tremendous interest in cloud technologies such as SharePoint Server 2016. By delivering that technology we are able to build stronger relationships with our customers and provide them with the best cloud solutions to propel their business.”

SharePoint Server 2016 carries forward the solid architecture provided in SharePoint Server 2013, but also includes new capabilities designed to support the most demanding workloads.

Cloud Inspired Infrastructure
Ever-changing business conditions require you to be agile, and that means investing in solutions that provide reliability and choice. SharePoint Server 2016 provides the flexibility to tailor deployments based on your unique business needs.

SharePoint Server 2016 allows you to maximize the value of your existing infrastructure while enabling you to take advantage of the latest hardware innovations and computing technologies – making it capable of handling enormous amounts of data faster, more efficiently, and at a lower cost.

Experiences
Making decisions faster and keeping in contact are critical capabilities for increasing effectiveness in any organization. Users’ ability to access information while on the go is now a workplace necessity.

SharePoint Server 2016 provides improved mobile access to content, people, and applications along with touch-based experiences across devices and screen sizes. It makes file storage and document collaboration more people-centric. And it enables improved user experiences and capabilities derived from innovations in Office 365, available as part of multi-tenant or dedicated farm deployment.

Compliance
Data loss is non-negotiable, and overexposure to information can have legal and compliance implications. SharePoint Server 2016 provides a broad array of Data Loss Prevention (DLP) features and capabilities designed to make certain that sensitive information remains that way, and ensures the right people have access to the right information at the right time.

Talk to us about a SharePoint Server 2016 deployment today. At PLEXHOSTED we have done thousands of SharePoint migrations. Our support engineers are available ‘round-the-clock, 24/7/365 to assist you with technical as-well-as application deployment issues. If you have questions, they will more than likely have answers. A highly knowledgeable and reliable hosting partner is critical to optimizing yours, and your customers, SharePoint experience. It saves time, money, and as much as 60% in capital expense over hosting yourself.

Find out more about SharePoint Server 2016 from PLEXHOSTED by visiting us at the following Link: http://www.plexhosted.com

Migrate email to Office 365

Migrate email to Office 365 at PlexHostedWhen administrators first set up Office 365, many of them migrate email from existing systems. Your organization can migrate email to Office 365 from another system as well. The Office 365 administration user interface can be used for this purpose. You can also do this by using Windows PowerShell to migrate email. Your users are free to import their own email, contacts, and other mailbox information to their newly created Office 365 mailbox.

There are three types of email migrations that can be performed from an Exchange Server:

  • Migrate all mailboxes at once (cutover migration). With the help of cutover migration you can migrate the contents of user mailboxes from a source email system to Office 365 all at once.  A cutover migration can be performed by using the Setup wizard, or by starting from the Exchange admin center (EAC).
    Note: The Setup wizard is limited to migrating 150 mailboxes only. If cutover migration is started from the EAC, you can move up to 2000 mailboxes.
  • Migrate mailboxes in batches (staged migration). You can migrate the contents of user mailboxes from a source email system to Office 365 over time using a staged migration. This kind of migration is targeted at users who want to set a long-term mail coexistence with Exchange Online and their on-premises environments.
  • Migrate using an integrated Exchange Server and Office 365 environment (hybrid). This type of migration allows you to maintain both on-premises and online mailboxes for your organization and to gradually migrate users and email to Office 365. Hybrid migration is applicable for the following situations:
    – You have Exchange 2010 and more than 150-2000 mailboxes.
    – You have Exchange 2010 and want to migrate mailboxes in small batches during a specific time frame.
    – You have Exchange 2013. There is also an option to migrate email from another IMAP-enabled email system.

The O365 migration engine uses the information that’s provided by IT admins of a non-Exchange-based mail system in the EAC to connect to IMAP mailboxes and download mailbox data. IT admins need to provide a list of users to migrate in a CSV file. When the IMAP migration method is used, only the items in the users’ inbox or other mail folders are migrated. Tasks, contacts and calendar items cannot be migrated with IMAP, but can be migrated by the user.

New Features for SharePoint 2016

New Features for SharePoint 2016The SharePoint Server 2016 release, based on customers’ feedback to meet their exact requirements for the product, introduces significant improvements in SharePoint functionality.

The following list provides a summary of the new features available with SharePoint Server 2016.

– Improved User Experience. SharePoint Server 2016 has now updated the ribbon from SharePoint 2013, so it matches the Office 365 ribbon, meaning that if users are swapping between systems, they will get a consistent experience.

– Extensible Hybrid App Launcher. SharePoint Server 2016 Beta 2 introduces the App Launcher to gain a common access experience across applications and solutions in Office 365 and SharePoint Server 2016.

– Improved Mobile Experience. SharePoint Server 2016 comes with a touch friendly interface to allow you to make decisions faster and keep in contact with colleagues.

– Hybrid OneDrive for Business. Users can sync files with Office 365 and share them with others. They can also get access to their files through the Office 365 directly from any device.

– Cloud Hybrid Search. SharePoint Server 2016 provides a truly unified search experience across SharePoint on-premises and SharePoint Online for the end users. It now enables you to effectively index all of your content and thus provide a single set of results with combined search relevancy ranking, instead of separated lists of results from your on premises and SharePoint online within one page as it was previously.

– Durable Links. The idea is to make sure that links, you sent to your folks continue to work regardless of what happens to the document, i.e. the file name was changed or the document moved.

– Increased File Size for Uploads. The limit for maximum size of the uploaded file to SharePoint, set to 2Gb in previous versions, is no longer an issue. Though there’s no real limit now, Microsoft has strongly recommended for it not to go beyond 10Gb.

– Sites you follow in one place. Users now have the ability to follow SharePoint Server and SharePoint Online sites, and see them aggregated in a single list.

How to publish a SharePoint 2013 blog article via Microsoft Word 2013

This guide will show you how to publish a SharePoint blog article via Microsoft Word 2013.
  1. Run Microsoft Word 2013.
  2. Go to the File tab – New and choose Blog post from the available templates.
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  3. If you publish a blog post via Microsoft Word 2013 for the first time a new window will pop up asking you to register a blog account. Click on Register now.
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  4. Choose SharePoint blog from the drop-down menu and click Next.
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  5. Enter the URL of your SharePoint blog and click OK.
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  6. A password prompt window will pop up. Enter your credentials and click OK.
  7. Now you can see that your account has been successfully registered.
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  8. Now you can create a blog post. Type the name of your article and fill in the body. Then click on Publish and choose Publish from the drop-down menu.
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  9. Once you`ve published your article, you will be provided with publishing information.
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  10. Now you can go to your SharePoint blog and see the published article.
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Exchange Server 2016 overview

Since email remains a key element in every business, it is vital to use the most up-to-date and secure tools for business communications. The developers have improved Exchange Server 2016 integration with other Office products; cloud technologies, additional recovery functions and other elements have also been added.makes document sharing easier and eliminates version control problems. For example, in Outlook 2016 or Outlook browser version, you can now attach a document as a link to SharePoint 2016 or OneDrive for Business instead of a traditional attachment. Developers have also substantially improved Outlook web experience, by adding new features, such as Sweep, Pin, Undo, inline reply, a new single-line inbox view, improved HTML rendering, new themes, emoticons and more.

Improved search architecture delivers more accurate and complete results. Outlook 2016 is optimized to use the power of the Exchange 2016 backend to fasten search process. An intelligent search tool provides search suggestions, search refiners, people suggestions, and the facility to search events scheduled on your calendar.

Exchange 2016 has a reformed eDiscovery tool, with reliability improved by a new, asynchronous architecture, which spreads the work across multiple servers. It lets you search, hold, and export content located in public folders.

The developers has gained growth of overall productivity and stability, which come along with automated repair improvements and the Microsoft Exchange Server 2016 architecture characteristics, which simplify the process of planning hybrid and on-premises deployments.

Using MySQL database as a Datasource

How to connect to MySQL database from PowerPivot

One of the supported data sources that you can use to connect to your workbooks and create PowerPivot reports is MySQL database. But before creating such connection you need to make sure that the following requirements are fulfilled:

  • Make sure your MySQL server is binded on public IP address and accept traffic from PlexHosted`s SharePoint app server where your site is deployed, on default port 3306 (port 3306 used for demonstration purposes in this case).
  • You have a user that have read only permissions to required databases (root user is used for demonstration purposes in this case) GRANT ALL ON employees.* TO root@11.22.33.44′ IDENTIFIED BY ‘verysecurepassword’; or GRANT ALL ON employees.* TO root@’%’ IDENTIFIED BY ‘verysecurepassword’; (if you have a firewall)
  • Your Desktop machines which are building excel reports must have permissions to connect to your MySQL server using public IP address.
  • The MySQL Connector/ODBC has been installed on the machine from which you are going to connect to MySQL. You can download and install it from [here].
Creating a connection to MySQL database
  1. Open the Excel workbook you would like to connect to the database and go to the PowerPivot tab. In the PowerPivot tab click Manage.
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  2. When the PowerPivot for Excel window opened, click on From Other Sources button in the Get External Data section.
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  3. Choose Others (OLEDB/ODBC) option.
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  4. Type the name for your connection and enter the connection sting using the pattern below:
    Provider=MSDASQL.1;Persist Security Info=True;Extended Properties=”DRIVER={MySQL ODBC 5.3 ANSI Driver};UID=readonlyuser;Server=11.22.33.44;Database=employees;Password=verysecurepassword;Option=3DRIVER={MySQL ODBC 5.3 ANSI Driver}”;Server=11.22.33.44;Database=employees;Option=3;”;
    Where:
    UID=<user with permissions to connect to your database>
    Password=<your user password>
    Server=<your MySQL server public IP address>
    Database=<your database name.
    After entering the connection string click on Test Connection button.
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  5. Click OK in the connection status window.
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  6. Click Next.
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  7. In the Table Import Wizard choose the option Write a query that will specify the data to import and click Next.
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  8. Enter the query to import the required data from the database and click Validate. Once you query is validated click Finish.
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  9. The Table Import Wizard will start importing data from your database to the PowerPivot model. Once the status of the wizard changes to Success click Close.
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  10. You can see the data imported to the model and can start creating your PowerPivot reports by clicking on the PowerPivot table button.
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Compliance in business: Laws and regulations IT departments should be aware of

In a business sense, compliance refers to a company’s efforts to obey all of the laws and regulations that govern how they can manage the business, their staff, and their treatment to their customers. The concept of compliance is to make sure that companies act responsibly and are held accountable for those actions.

This doesn’t just deal with ethical business practices or providing adequate customer service – these regulations are put in place to safeguard sensitive data, both of the business and the customer. So why is this so important? The most obvious and valuable outcome of compliance is that it decreases your risk of fines, penalties, work stoppages, lawsuits or a shutdown of your business.

It also helps to secure sensitive data, which is probably the most important aspect if your business. There are many laws and regulations IT departments need to be aware of in regards to compliance. What follows is a list of the most noteworthy to ensure your business follows:

  • The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (SOX). Section 404 of SOX requires public companies annual reports to include the company’s own assessment of internal control over financial reporting, and its attestation by independent auditor. The above-mentioned assessment has been extended into the IT sphere by the opinion of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB), corporation created by SOX to oversee the auditors of public companies
  • The Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999 (also known as Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act – GLBA) protects the privacy and security of individually identifiable financial information collected, stored, and processed by financial institutions. This set of recommendations for audit was produced by the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC), an interagency group that includes five of the eight major financial regulatory agencies.
  • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) focuses on the healthcare industry, but other companies can be impacted however, if they engage in related activities or if they provide services to companies that are directly affected by the regulation.
  • European Union Data Protection Directive (EUDPD) refers to the protection of data privacy for citizens throughout the European Union. It has a strong influence on international regulations, since it puts strict limitations on sending EU citizens’ personal information outside of the European Union to areas that are considered to have less than adequate standards for data security.
  • Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) requires banks and other financial institutions to report certain transactions to government agencies to help eliminate money laundering, tax evasion, or other criminal activities.
  • Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standard is used as a framework for the Cardholder Information Security Program (CISP), which is intended to protect cardholder data from exposure and compromise across the entire payment industry. Its goal is to ensure that members, merchants, and service providers maintain the highest information security standard.
  • California Senate Bill 1386 puts into practice robust disclosure requirements for businesses and government agencies that experience security breaches that might imperil the personal information of California residents. The bill was the first attempt to address the problem of identity theft on the state level.
  • International Convergence of Capital Measurement and Capital Standards—A Revised Framework (also known as Basel II) introduces recommendations by bank supervisors and central bankers from the assemblage of countries, which are the members of the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision for revising the international standards for measuring regulatory capital the adequacy of a bank’s capital.

There is also another set of rules arisen for the IT industry from the service providers’ perspective – the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS), used by Department of Defense (DoD). Special attention should be paid to the DFARS-252.204-7012 clause, issued by DoD in November 2013, which contains rules and requirements regarding utilizing and safeguarding Unclassified Controlled Technical Information (UCTI) that is vital to national security. According to its requirements the following specific areas must be protected:

  • The adequate safeguarding of UCTI on or transiting through contractor unclassified information systems
  • Reporting to the DoD and investigating any cyber incidents that affect UCTI

PlexHosted, as a respected SharePoint hosting provider, has successfully implemented DFARS-252.204-7012 clause to its infrastructure. A widely known fact is that the success of your business pretty much depends on its public image. And accordance to this set of required compliance standards, laws and regulations will help you to build positive reputation and also to improve consumer loyalty, since customers are more likely going to return to a product or service from a company they identify as trustworthy.