Friday, March 26, 2010

Follow Me To The Cloud

Here is approximately how I feel about "Cloud Computing":

"Fly me to the moon . . . let me play among the stars . . ."

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We have lots of activities going on in and around cloud services. KPEnterprises (my tech company) is actively developing cloud service offerings and selling them to our new and existing clients. We've developed a sweet little offering for micro clients (ten users and less).

In the meantime, over at SMB Books, we're developing programs to spread the word for other consultants.

If you're interested in cloud stuff . . . Here are some things we're up to.

Webinar Series: Migrating from SBS to the Cloud

In association with MSPU, I am producing three webinars on the theme Migrating from SBS to the Cloud. I'll post a precise link and update this blog. But the training materials are at (They're just redoing their site, so give them a little time to index everything, but you should be able to find it there.)

There will be three installments, about a month apart. The first one was March 9th and has been recorded at MSPU.

The basic agenda looks like this:

March 9th: Part 1 = The View from 20,000 Feet

April 13th: Part 2 = Options, Hardware, Software, and Service Considerations

May 11th: Part 3 = Building a New Business Model

The first installment is intended to be a good overview of how you move functions from in-house to the cloud. If you've read The Network Migration Workbook then the basic flow will make sense. We're going to migrate one thing at a time.

I identify 18 core functions of the basic small business and talk about how you can choose to move these to one (or more) of three cloud options. I've talked before about the cloud options before:

- Internet cloud services (reselling someone else's hosted services)

- Partner-hosted cloud services (inside your data center/colo)

- On-premise cloud services (e.g., Zenith's Smart Style or something you designed yourself)

The second installment looks at some of the specifics of choosing the hardware, software, and services that you'll bundle together in your offerings. I'll give examples from my company's cloud service offerings and show you how they compare to non-cloud services for our clients.

The third installment talks about developing a new business model around this stuff. Your business will change dramatically. How do you do that?

Of course there will always be some functions that are best place in-house and will never move to the cloud. The beautiful part about that realization is that you'll commit early on to living in both worlds. That will serve you well.

In many ways SBS 2003 / SBS 2008 is perfectly suited to be part of a partially-cloud-based environment.

Live Seminars

For example, on April 17th in Miami, Florida I've got an all-day training (8 hours) on Network Documentation, Zero Downtime Migration, and Migrating from SBS to The Cloud.

Only $199, includes breakfast and lunch!

Sign up right now

or Find Out More

This seminar features . . .

• LOTS of best practices on documentation, project management, client management, employee management, and network migrations
• How to conceptualize a ZDTM project
• How to run a ZDTM project
• Estimating, Quoting, and Selling the project
• Moving from "the quote" to Service Requests in your ticketing system
• Working the ZDTM project profitably
• Documenting networks from A to Z: Using checklists, paper forms, and electronic tools
• Special focus on Migrating from SBS to The Cloud - including specific options with Sample Quotes for your clients
• Real World strategies and techniques you can take home and use immediately
• and more!

Cloud Services Roundtable

In case you haven't heard, we started a new broadcast/podcast series called Cloud Services Roundtable. It is normally broadcast live on the first and third Wednesdays of the month. Harry Brelsford joins me on the third Wednesday of each month as co-host and business speaker.

The shows are recorded and available for download by subscribers. It is free to listen live and only $4.95/month to subscribe to past shows. And I must say that the feedback has been extremely positive. Check it out at Cloud Services Roundtable.

My Blog -

This blog has been giving a lot of coverage to Cloud Services. Search for the tag like this: and you'll see what I mean.

If I have thoughts on the subject, they're posted here. Tell your friends and neighbors.

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So stay tuned to this blog, plus Facebook. Whatever I learn about the world of the cloud I'm going feed to you in the community. Except stuff under NDA, of course. There's some pretty cool stuff there, but I was recently reminded how that can simply disappear before it becomes reality.

". . . Fill my heart with song . . . and let me sing forever more . . ."

Personal Note

I have been getting a LOT of email from folks who want to call me, email, buy me lunch, and suck my brain dry on cloud services. I am sorry, but I can't do it. Like you, I have limited hours in the day. Unless you're a paying client, I need to broadcast information in a many-to-one format.

The only way I can afford to help people for free is in these broadcast formats. I'm sorry about that, but I have to keep the lights on at my office and home. And right now I have way too many requests for quick phone calls about services.

If you grab me at a conference and buy me a beer, that's another story.

Questions/feedback welcome.


Now Shipping:
The Network Migration Workbook:
Zero Downtime Migration Strategies for Microsoft Networks

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