SQL Server in Azure

SQL Server in Azure

As all of us in the technology industry are fully cognizant of now,  Microsoft ended extended support for SQL Server 2008 and SQL Server 2008 R2 (actually, back in July of 2019). What this means for you as an organization, is that there are no longer updates available for your mission critical database applications running on SQL Server 2008.  This includes important security updates and enhancements which leaves your environment vulnerable to potential hacks, breaches and other security issues.  It also means that you are now likely out of compliance with several industry standard, government regulations and laws.  This is further complicated by Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2 extended support ended in January of 2020.  If you run SQL Server 2008 on Windows Server 2008, you will experience a double whammy!   This is just one of many use cases for considering an upgrade to SQL Server 2019, whether that be on premises, hybrid, or cloud. Some of the questions that...
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SharePoint Server 2019

SharePoint Server 2019

The business climate has changed. People expect to be productive across networks and devices, while boundaries between business units and roles have blurred. Moving forward, people want to communicate without collaborative barriers. For businesses, you want your collaboration, communication, and productivity solutions to be both cost-effective and flexible. SharePoint Server 2019 is designed to help you achieve new levels of reliability and performance, delivering features and capabilities that simplify administration, protect communications and information, and empower your users to work across devices and screens. SharePoint Server 2019 is the next-generation server product, building on the solid foundation delivered with SharePoint Server 2016 and investments in Microsoft Office 365 to: Enable productive experiences across desktop and mobileProvide a scalable and flexible collaboration and communications platformIncrease productivity with an intuitive user experience SharePoint is preferred by businesses who need an adaptable solution that delivers rich and productive experiences. As with SharePoint Server 2016, SharePoint Server 2019 has been designed, developed, and tested with the Microsoft...
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Data Estate Modernization

Data Estate Modernization

Many organizations today are experiencing the growth pains of a legacy data landscape and architecture for managing their analytics and reporting needs.  Many of the issues related to this obsolescence derive from the now outdated architecture of the enterprise data warehouse that no longer delivers digital value or data insights to drive business innovation.  While these legacy systems originally provided significant value by allowing the integration of data from multiple sources, provided a basis for better decision making, and allowed for robust enterprise reporting, they are no longer up to the task of driving that same business value with newer and more modern data sources. "Most existing legacy enterprise data warehouse systems were originally designed and architected for online analytic processing (OLAP) and reporting systems. These systems (many of which are outdated today) were often architected for highly normalized and structured data only".  Forbes Magazine - 2019 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kcIEJvpkKAY&t Other challenges with legacy data warehouses include things such as:  heightened risk of...
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Microsoft 365: Security YOU Can Trust

Microsoft 365: Security YOU Can Trust

As organizations like yours embrace the many opportunities presented by cloud and mobile computing to connect with customers and optimize operations, they take on new risks. One of the biggest challenges in digital transformation is ensuring security, privacy & compliance. Oakwood is here to help! Before we dive in too deeply on the reasons Microsoft 365 should be your trusted security solution, let's highlight just some of the reasons in which you'll want to engage with a proven Microsoft Gold Partner like Oakwood. Most organizations are... Lacking the security talent to get ahead of security and compliance risksUnable to identify, assess, and mitigate security risksUnfamiliar with security best practices and the overall threat landscapeConfused with many offerings and featuresUnable to correctly respond to compliance obligations in a timely fashion What is Microsoft 365 Exactly? Microsoft 365 (M365) is an integrated solution that includes; Office 365, Enterprise Mobility + Security, and Windows 10 Enterprise that empowers everyone to be creative and work...
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Microsoft Teamwork Solutions

Microsoft Teamwork Solutions

Staying connected with communication tools from Office 365. It takes a village to turn ideas into realities. Teamwork is bringing people together to share information, work together, and accomplish common goals and objectives. When you have a place to create and make decisions as a team, there’s no limit to what you can achieve. Teamwork solutions from Microsoft provide a modern conversation experience for today’s teams. Now, you can bring everything together in a shared workspace where you can chat, meet, share files, and work with business apps. Powered by Office 365, Teamwork solutions from Microsoft empower people to express their ideas more effectively, promote a more flexible workplace, and reduce costs for customers. Finding secure, easy ways to connect across locations and time zones should be a high priority for companies seeking a competitive advantage in today’s quickly changing technology landscape. Luckily, Teamwork solutions from Microsoft provide a complete solution that connects your teams and resources and make it easier than ever to work together across organizations. Teamwork solutions from...
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Evolve Your Web Applications with Microsoft Azure

Evolve Your Web Applications with Microsoft Azure

Today, every company runs many different applications that are essential for success – both internal business applications but also external-facing applications for customers and partners (such as the company website, customer self-service portal, e-commerce sites, or mobile apps). And then, there's data. Every user interaction with any application works with data, consumes data and generates data. Today, every business collects tremendous amounts of information - and the challenge is how to turn this data into actionable insights and intelligence to provide a superior customer experience. The Customer Experience To ground us into the importance of customer experience, let's start by looking at a Forrester quote that says “More than any other factor, customer experiences determine whether companies thrive and profit, or struggle and fade." In today’s digital economy customers are the new market-makers, reshaping industries and changing how businesses compete and win. Your end users have really high expectations. Here are a few interesting points from the Forrester study previously mentioned. 79% of customers won’t return...
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Get Modern with Windows 10 and Office 365

Get Modern with Windows 10 and Office 365

Digital transformation and the modernization of IT are essential priorities for companies seeking a competitive advantage in today’s quickly changing technology landscape. Organizations like yours are driven to make changes by consumer demands and expectations, technology improvements, competitive and market forces, and changing regulatory requirements. In this shifting landscape, you and your employees need to work better and smarter. It's time to get modern with Windows 10 and Office 365. If you’re like most companies, you’re now starting to recognize the value of moving to a cloud-based solution and upgrading to Windows 10 and Office 365. However, you probably have a few questions about what this might look like for your team. How does upgrading to Windows 10 and Office 365 empower people to collaborate in real time and store and access data? Microsoft 365 provides organizations with a unified environment for collaboration and teamwork. All services are managed under the same framework and identity management solution. Data is protected by first-class security and encryption standards, and your collaboration...
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Microsoft 365: Committed To YOUR Security

Microsoft 365: Committed To YOUR Security

Compliance is in place to protect your customers not burden your business, at least that’s the goal. In reality, compliance standards are always changing, and businesses of all sizes are constantly concerned about maintaining compliance.  That’s why Microsoft built over 900 controls into its software and employs a full team of people focused on this very task. With compliance infused into the very core of the software, your customers can feel confident their data is safe with your business, and you can breathe easier knowing your security is up-to-date.  At Oakwood Systems Group, Inc., we are committed to the idea that compliant data security should not be out of reach for any business. Below are the Top 10 security deployment actions you should be leveraging within Microsoft 365. (1) Identify Users Deploy Azure Active Directory and connect to your on-premises directories. Create a single, common identity for each user to provide managed, secure access to all corporate resources. (2) Manage Authentication & Safeguard Users Enable Single Sign-On (SSO) in Azure Active Directory to manage authentication across devices, cloud apps, and on-premises apps. Then set up Multi-Factor Authentication to authenticate user sign-ons through...
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The Workplace Evolution

The Workplace Evolution

The workplace is evolving rapidly, and employees have new expectations for work and how it should get done. Business leaders are embracing these changes and supporting a new culture of work. This means... Collaborating in real timeHaving always-on access to files and dataFlexibility to work from wherever, wheneverStaying safe and secure Business leaders recognize that people are at the core of how each of their companies operate and it’s imperative to empower their employees to innovate and grow in a competitive landscape. At the same time, companies are faced with the challenge of protecting their people and IP in a more complex threat environment. Companies are constantly looking for solutions to enable a modern workplace for their employees. Microsoft 365 brings together the best of Windows 10, Office 365, and Enterprise Mobility + Security into an integrated solution to empower employees.  Microsoft 365 delivers value for customers across four core areas. The first two – creativity and teamwork – are about delivering a great end user...
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Customer Cloud Success Story: Special Olympics

Customer Cloud Success Story: Special Olympics

For 50 years, the Special Olympics has used the power of sports to infuse joy, to incite action, to inspire communities, and to empower people with intellectual disabilities to discover new strengths and focus on what they CAN do.   This worldwide nonprofit uses the Microsoft Cloud to track data for nearly 5 million athletes in 170 countries. With anywhere, anytime access, countless hours have been saved and reinvested into impacting athletes and changing the world.  Just think—how can you make a difference and how might technology help you impact the world? Wherever you are in your cloud journey, Oakwood Systems Group, Inc. can help. Contact us to learn more. ...
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Rolls Royce is Flying High with Azure IoT

Rolls Royce is Flying High with Azure IoT

Rolls Royce has over 13,000 engines in operation around the world, and they provide services to maintain those engines at peak performance. Today’s engines have thousands of sensors that can produce terabytes of data on long-haul flights. Making sense of all that data is critical in transporting customers safely and efficiently. That’s why they use a suite of tools from Microsoft to help iron out what all that data means. But adopting the right tools is easier said than done. Avoiding operating disruptions is crucial to success at Rolls Royce. In fact, a single issue with a plane, and its inevitable effect to an entire airline, can cost up to one million dollars per day! Limiting these disruptions is the biggest reason for their investment in IoT technologies from Azure. Being able to identify problems before they arise has been invaluable for the manufacturer. With early notice, Rolls Royce can reduce inventory costs and maximize availability of parts. Saving airlines...
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Enhanced Productivity with Windows 10

Enhanced Productivity with Windows 10

Since the beginning of the business computing revolution, IT professionals have been staffed with one over-arching mission: to empower their end users.  Each and every employee within an organization – from the CEO to the firstline worker – depends upon IT to protect them from security threats, and provide them with the tools and technology they need to do their best work. Although the technology we use has changed dramatically since PCs first started appearing in the workplace, the fundamental purpose of IT – to protect and empower the organization – still holds true today, and more so than ever before. Looking back just over a decade ago, the world was a very different place where technology is concerned.  The Nokia 2600 Classic was the best selling phone of 2007.  The bleeding edge of technology for its time.  Can you imagine still using a phone like this today?  You wouldn’t.  Nor would you expect your users to. But the reality is, on...
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