Run SAP applications on Microsoft Azure today!

by Shijaz Abdulla on 30.05.2014 at 23:33

imageMicrosoft and SAP have teamed up to bring you the best of both worlds, enabling you to take advantage of on-demand resources in the cloud and maximize the value of your Microsoft and SAP investments. Azure offers a reliable, security-enabled cloud infrastructure platform that enables businesses to quickly deploy SAP solutions in the cloud.

Azure is now certified for SAP products including SAP Business Suite, SAP NetWeaver, and SAP HANA Developer Edition. Effective immediately, you can run these SAP products on Azure with full support available from both Microsoft and SAP. In addition, you can deploy and provision reconfigured SAP solutions, within minutes, directly to Azure using the SAP Cloud Appliance Library tool.

With this partnership, you can use your existing SAP licenses to deploy SAP software on Azure. Standard purchase models, pricing, and terms will be applicable for underlying Azure services, and you will consume and pay for these services as with any other deployment.

For more information, visit the SAP on Azure website.

Run SAP applications on Microsoft Azure today!

by Shijaz Abdulla on 29.05.2014 at 13:50

imageMicrosoft and SAP have teamed up to bring you the best of both worlds, enabling you to take advantage of on-demand resources in the cloud and maximize the value of your Microsoft and SAP investments. Azure offers a reliable, security-enabled cloud infrastructure platform that enables businesses to quickly deploy SAP solutions in the cloud.

Azure is now certified for SAP products including SAP Business Suite, SAP NetWeaver, and SAP HANA Developer Edition. Effective immediately, you can run these SAP products on Azure with full support available from both Microsoft and SAP. In addition, you can deploy and provision reconfigured SAP solutions, within minutes, directly to Azure using the SAP Cloud Appliance Library tool.

With this partnership, you can use your existing SAP licenses to deploy SAP software on Azure. Standard purchase models, pricing, and terms will be applicable for underlying Azure services, and you will consume and pay for these services as with any other deployment.

For more information, visit the SAP on Azure website.

Windows Server 2012 hits General Availability!

by Shijaz Abdulla on 04.09.2012 at 22:50

Today, Windows Server 2012 hits the General Availability (GA) milestone!

This means the product is now officially available to partners and customers to purchase and install in production.

image

Windows Server 2012 expands the definition of a server operating system from the single server up to the datacenter and out to the cloud, while also incorporating breakthroughs across advanced storage, software-defined networking, virtualization and automation.  Windows Server 2012 delivers hundreds of new features that will help customers achieve a transformational leap in the speed, scale and power of their datacenters and applications.  In combination with Windows Azure and System Center 2012, Windows Server 2012 empowers customers to manage and deliver applications and services across private, hosted and public clouds.

Customers can use their existing skills and investments in systems management, application development, database, identity and virtualization to take advantage of Windows Server 2012 and realize the promise of cloud computing.

What’s New in Windows Server 2012? A LOT! Click here to read more.

What about VMware?

On the virtualization front, there is no reason why customers should be looking at VMware anymore for virtualization! Windows Server 2012 is the ultimate, no compromise hypervisor release that encompasses all that you need for virtualization to build a private or hybrid cloud!

Read about it! Competitive Advantages of Hyper-V over VMware vSphere 5.1

Notes:

  1. Microsoft Premier Support Services will begin support for Windows Server 2012 starting October 30, 2012.
  2. Some of our top partners in Qatar are already trained on Windows Server 2012 and have done early deployments for select customers. Watch out for some exciting news.
  3. Our partners in Qatar are being trained on the Windows Server 2012 licensing in the coming days and will be able to help you with licensing.
  4. Qatar customers can also reach out to me directly by email or phone 33549982 for any questions/clarifications.
  5. Join me and other datacenter experts from Microsoft at the Hilton Hotel Doha on September 18 for the Private Cloud Roadmap event to have a 1:1 discussion over coffee!

Microsoft shuts down spam network, reduces worldwide spam by 39%

by Shijaz Abdulla on 20.03.2011 at 10:56

Microsoft Digital Crimes Unit (DCU), working together with the US Federal law enforcement units has brought down Rustock, the world’s largest email spam network.

Rustock, a botnet, that controlled around 2 million zombie machines worldwide, was sending out up to 30 million spam email messages each day into cyberspace.

no-spamRustock was taken down piece by piece – the master controllers (botnet controllers that sent out commands to compromized ‘zombie’ machines) were identified. Microsoft, working together with the US Marshall Service, seized some of these machines in the US for analysis and collaborated with the Netherlands police to disable some of the controllers outside the US.

Microsoft then worked with service providers to black hole IP addresses that were being used to control the botnet, and with the Chinese CN-CERT to block registration of domains that could be used for these purposes.

Microsoft provides the best anti-spam solution available in the market today, and also provides a variety of best-in-class unified threat management, rights management, secure remote access and anti-malware solutions. For more information, check out the Forefront website, or speak to your Microsoft representative.

Further reading:

Kerala police nabs Nigerian email fraudster

by Shijaz Abdulla on 09.08.2009 at 11:36

How many times have we got one of those emails from an African country, promising us a large reward for letting them use our bank account to transfer money?

You might think that in this day and age, people are aware of such fraudulent acts and do not fall into such traps. Wrong! There’s still a  large number of people who fall for such things, as in the case of Sherif, an Indian living in Doha – who happens to hail from the same Indian district that I am from – Kannur.

As per a newspaper report, Sherif paid the Nigerian guy about $80,000 as ‘processing fee’ for transferring $150,000 to his bank account in Kerala, India. He eventually got ‘suspicious’ when the Nigerian kept asking for more money and complained to the Cyber Cell of the Kerala Police.

The cops set a trap for the Nigerian, Shabha Muhammed Razaq, and asked him to come to Bangalore to collect more money. Razaq walked into the police trap and he was caught with counterfeit US currency, fake passports and some chemicals (?!).

scamRazak was part of a much bigger gang engaged in internet fraud in India and admitted tricking many people living in other Indian states.

A great job done by the Cybercops of Kerala! However, the general public need to be more alert and aware about such scams, that take advantage one basic human instinct – greed!

Etisalat’s Blackberry – Suddenly it’s a privacy issue!

by Shijaz Abdulla on 15.07.2009 at 21:17

Day before yesterday, I wrote about the Blackberry update that caused device batteries to drain out on a UAE telco’s Blackberry subscriber network.

A later report in the Gulf News has revealed that the fateful patch, distributed by Etisalat, contained what is called an ‘interceptor’. An interceptor is basically a program that can potentially send a copy of each message on the device back to the service provider – which I would call – a serious privacy issue.

Quote from the Gulf News:

After a confirmation is successfully sent by the BlackBerry device to
etisalat, the device waits for a message from etisalat to activate the
interceptor software.
…if and when the command is received, the software sends every subsequent
opened message to etisalat.

…the software was also designed to protect itself from removal. It tracks changes to the system configuration and if it detects any, it uninstalls then reinstalls itself.

Apparently the battery drain was caused due the device waiting on an open data connection to send confirmation to Etisalat for the interceptor.

Unlike Blackberry devices, Windows Mobile devices are not managed by the service provider or telco. They are managed by the organization that owns/administers the devices, and hence there is a more complete degree of control on what software gets installed on these devices. All communication between the Windows Mobile device and the Exchange servers (email servers hosted within the organization’s premises), happens through a secure, encrypted SSL tunnel between the device and the server over the 3G/GPRS network. The operator only provides simple internet connectivity for the device, and can’t do much to intercept or tamper with email data getting sync’d with the device.

However, some organizations refrain from going the Windows Mobile way, the common reason being the ability to have consistent monthly data charges with the Blackberry. However, based on a recent survey with Windows Mobile users, we found very compelling results:

Windows Mobile 6.1, coupled with Exchange Server 2007 provided a major improvement in bandwidth utilization. For a heavily active user profile, Windows Mobile 6.1 used only 388 KB per day to synchronize with Exchange Server!

What’s more?

  • A single Exchange 2007 Client Access Server can handle more concurrent connections on similar hardware when compared to Blackberry Enterprise Server (BES).
  • Windows Mobile is of lower cost and complexity
  • Windows Mobile is more secure and is highly manageable through System Center
  • You get a wider choice of applications and devices.
  • Familar and open development environment fosters development of exciting tools/add-ons

Trouble with Blackberry update – Etisalat

by Shijaz Abdulla on 13.07.2009 at 15:35

image Etisalat, a leading telecom provider in the United Arab Emirates, has stopped a “performance enhancing” patch for its Blackberry subscribers after it was discovered that the update caused excessive battery heating and drainage.

Subscribers have complained that the battery drains within an hour, after the patch has been installed.

News of the patch gone seriously wrong has made it to the front page of Gulf News. Research In Motion (the company that makes the Blackberry) did not respond to the newspaper for a comment. The carrier Etisalat has not confirmed if the fault lies with the carrier or with RIM.

The Arrival of Abdullah

by Shijaz Abdulla on 05.06.2009 at 13:17

It is with pleasure that I announce that the almighty has blessed us with a baby boy. Abdullah Ehsan ibn Shijaz was born on June 4, 2009 at 12:40 AM in Muscat, Oman.

‘Abdullāh (عبد الله), in Arabic, means servant of God. Humility before God is an essential value in Islam, hence Abdullah is a preferred male name among Muslims.

Ehsān (Arabic: احسان), is an Arabic term meaning perfection or excellence, which is related to the word "goodness" (الحسن‎). It is a matter of taking one’s inner faith (eeman) and showing it in both deed and action, a sense of social responsibility borne from religious convictions.

In Islam, Ehsan is the Muslim responsibility to obtain perfection, or excellence, in worship, such that Muslims try to worship God as if they see Him, and although they cannot see Him (due to the belief that Allah is not made of materials), they undoubtedly believe that He is constantly watching over them. That definition comes from the hadith (known as the Hadith of Gabriel) in which Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) states, "[Ehsan is] to worship God as though you see Him, and if you cannot see Him, then indeed He sees you." (Al-Bukhari and Al-Muslim).

GPS birds might crash in 2010

by Shijaz Abdulla on 25.05.2009 at 19:28

A report from the GAO (Government Accountability Office) states that GPS systems may start failing from early next year due to a number of reasons, including lack of maintenance of satellites.

Fewer satellites, not replacing older satellites, and the rapid growth in the use of GPS devices are among the reasons listed.

GPS is being used by trucking and shipping companies to track exact location of their vessels. Emergency 911 services use GPS to track responders. Commercial airline pilots use GPS systems to get people safely to their destinations. Militaries use GPS on guided weapons to reach the correct target. Imagine if one of these things went horribly wrong!

Besides that, thousands of motorists around the world (like me) use GPS systems to find the way around town! Imagine your GPS device blacking out after getting you stranded in the middle of nowhere…

See also: Lost in the desert – with a GPS!

My Garmin nuvi in Abu Dhabi

ITP reports YouTube security issue

by Shijaz Abdulla on 23.04.2008 at 18:02

ITP today reported the YouTube security issue that this blogger wrote about on 19th April 2008. That’s 5 days after I discovered it! [That’s another reason why you should subscribe to this blog.] 🙂

ITP has confirmed my initial doubts over the cause of the issue – incorrect web caching by the ISP – Etisalat, in this case. Even thought I had written to YouTube regarding the issue, they have not responded to me till this date – neither have they responded to ITP. Etisalat had even gone to the extent of making my blog mysteriously unavailable in the UAE, the day after I posted about the problem.

Read the ITP article here.

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