AIS managed patching of SharePoint allows customers to rest easy while we keep your system updated for a fixed price.

One of the many AIS Managed Services offerings includes patching for platforms to include SharePoint.  Recently we worked on patching a 2016 SharePoint server farm for a medium-sized financial institution. The patch ran successfully on the test environment and we did not run into any issues. The only difference between the test and production environment was a lack of distributed cache servers. Everything was going well with the servers…until we got to those distributed cache servers. Our strategy was to apply the patch to each server and run the Psconfig tool on each server individually.

When we ran the tool on the cache servers we hit a roadblock.  After running the Psconfig tool on the Cache2, we verified the server status on the Servers in Farm page and it showed “No Action Required”…but the Compliant status was “No(Fix)”. We clicked on the fix link in hopes to bring the server back to compliant. Unfortunately, this was not the case because the “Fix” button did nothing. Read More…

It’s another great day at Microsoft Inspire at the D.C. Convention Center! Lots of great sessions and keynotes are coming up today, but here’s a glimpse of some of the sights and sounds from yesterday! Read More…

Members of the @aisteam are attending Microsoft Inspire in Washington, D.C. this week! More than 16,000 Microsoft Partners from around the globe have come together for a week of networking and learning. The theme for day one at #MSInspire was all about empowerment: How we can use the Microsoft mission to empower every person and every organization to achieve more.

We’ll be posting some more in-depth blogs about the keynotes and other highlights soon, but for now, please enjoy some videos and photos from yesterday. As always, please follow @aisteam on Twitter for live updates from this amazing event!

Containers are, for good reason, getting a lot of attention.  For the cost of having to manage some complexity, they provide a unique level of flexibility, ability to scale, run software across cloud and on-premises environment…the list of benefits can go on and on.  And usually when you hear about containers in the technical press, they’re included in an overarching story about an organization that moved to some highly scalable, microservices-based architecture to meet their ridiculous capacity demands (Netflix, Google, etc.).

At the most basic level, however, containers are about being able to streamline the process of installing and running software. In fact, the fundamental concepts behind containers map almost one-to-one with what’s been traditionally required to install a piece of software on your laptop: Read More…

The rapid growth of the Internet of Things (IoT) is certainly exciting for government agencies, but it also brings many challenges (namely security and devising a clear strategy for integrating a still-evolving technology).

Last night’s #AzureGov meetup was a great evening of networking, demos, use cases and best practices for government agencies looking to quickly and securely deploy IoT.

Last night featured two speakers from Docker Public SectorChris Cyrus, vice president, and Andrew Weiss, lead engineer  –  who joined the Microsoft Azure Government team to discuss how containers are changing the way software is built and procured in government. They presented demos of Docker Containers deploying IoT in the cloud and gave insights into best practices and customer use cases for government IoT.

In case you missed it, @aisteam was there and livestreamed the event. (Videos below.) Read More…

Azure Role-Based Access Control (RBAC) offers the powerful ability to accord permissions based on the principle of “least privilege.” In this short video, we extend the idea of Azure RBAC to implement a JIT (just in time) permission control. We think a JIT model can be useful for the following reasons:

1) Ability to balance the desire for “least privilege” with the cost of managing an exploding number of fine-grained permission rules (hundreds of permission types, combined with hundreds of resources).

2) Allow coarse-grained access (typically DevOps teams need access to multiple services) that is “context aware” (permission is granted during the context of a task).

Of course JIT can only be successful if its accompanied with smart automation (so users have instant access to permissions that they need and when they need them).

Interested? Watch this 15-minute video that goes over the concepts and a short demonstration of JIT with Azure RBAC.

Over the years, AIS has leveraged “Excel on Server” to enable power users to develop their own code.

Consider a common requirement to implement calculations/reports that adhere to the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) standards. These types of reports are often large and complex. The calculations in the reports are specific to a geographical region, so a multi-national company needs to implement different versions of these calculations. Furthermore, over time these calculations have to be adjusted to comply with changing laws.

Traditionally, these calculations have been implemented using custom code, and as a result, suffer from the challenges outlined above, including the high cost of development and maintenance, requirements being lost in translation, the lack of traceability, and the lack of a robust mechanism for making a quick change to a calculation in response to a change in a standard. This is where the power of Excel on Server comes in.

As you may know, Excel on the server is available via in two forms: Read More…

The microservice architecture has been very popular in the industry past few years and we’re learning about the successful adoption of this architecture. The higher rate of architecture style adoption is due to the echo system that’s evolved around this architecture and benefits realized by the organizations. In this blog post, I’ll introduce the microservice, walk through steps to build more of a “Hello World” stateless microservice using the Microsoft Service Fabric, and deploy the microservice to local service fabric environment.

Before we dive in to the building of the stateful microservice let’s look at the basics of the microservice, purpose and types of microservice. Read More…