Archive for the ‘MEHS’ Category

Outsourcing email?

June 19, 2007
 
12.1%  

Sort of, we want to/are outsource(ing) support of our internal application

12.1%  

No way, the costs don’t match our business needs

  3.0%

Yes, but just the archiving/backup

54.5%  

Yes, all email functions should be hosted

  9.1%

No way, we’ve got easy to use appliances

  3.0%

Yes, but just the mobile connectivity

  6.1%

Yes, but just the inbound messaging

From my earlier poll, it looks like the votes are supporting a move for completely outsourcing all email! That is kind of surprising….. There are all the normal questions that people have of outsourced email (virus/spam management, archiving, mobility, compliance, etc)….

But what about some of the more business critical components of the email system….you know the ones that make email the most important application in the enterprise?

How would an outsourcer…..

  • Integrate with workflow applications that rely on email?
  • Deal with encryption from the client to the host without reducing client functionality?
    • um, I can’t live without half the new features in outlook 2007 already!
  • Handle federated disaster restart?
    • Yes if my database says the customer was sent an email….they darn well better be regardless of the Nor’easter that just took out my servers!

Perhaps there is another explanation? Perhaps a local company that reads my blog inflated the poll….wait a minute….that’s not the only company with local offices pushing outsourcing. EMC is pushing outsourced storage, Google has their outsourced gmail, Azaleos lives down the road from MS, Amazon has “The Cloud“….so how will companies who have their email in one datacenter, their databases in another, and their web applications in “The Cloud” maintain their infrastructure as one cohesive entity? I guess that’s a bigger question and a much larger discussion….

We’ll get to that…in the meantime Go vote for what you think of outsourcing…

Advertisements

EMC will offer hosted storage

May 31, 2007

I am trying to catch up on the hodgepodge of press from EMC World…since there wasn’t a lot of blog coverage or live simulcasts :(

One thing I came across was the re-affirmation of the hosted storage solutions that EMC will offer through it’s partners. I mentioned hosted storagebefore and have wondered how EMC will play with the SaaS offerings that will be coming in the next few years. This isn’t a new approach or idea, but it is interesting how this approach will interact with Microsoft…or will lack integration with Microsoft. If you look at the acquisitions and read what the execs over there are telling us, Microsoft is looking to make a major play in the SaaS space…along with a minor on premise offering. So if Microsoft is going to move into the SaaS space and begin moving their apps out of your datacenters (including SaaS Storage)….where will you store your data? In some local facility where you are still paying to lease/purchase high end storage? Some storage cloud? Or on the SaaS providers’ high end storage? If you look at where the wins are today for combining hosted services like email and storage clouds….there are both success stories and failure stories.

The question that always comes up though is…. will customers outsource their apps and data to a third party? First, keep in mind we are not talking about just Small and Medium outsourcing here….we are talking about enterprise class services housed in another facility using high end storage. The expanse of customers who outsource their apps won’t want to keep their storage….and the customers who want to keep their storage won’t want to outsource their apps….So where is the line drawn? At what point is it more valuable to outsource both storage & apps and at what point is it more valuable to keep them in house? Clearly everyone thinks there is a line. Microsoft seems to be moving in the line, leaving a small number of in-house companies. EMC hasn’t really made clear where they think the line is though. Current directions and product offerings indicate they think the line leaves a larger number of in-house companies. I think it’s somewhere in the middle with some companies doing a little of both (for example, outsource spam filtering or mobile connectivity and keep the email servers in house). Even the basic email outsourcing can be difficult though. I have talked about Microsoft’s Hosted Messaging a bit, Keith McCall talks about the trade offs as well.

We’ve got a few years to see the result but it will be an interesting ride until we get there.

Hosting your email may be viable

April 12, 2007

It was a huge topic at the Connections conference in orlando this spring……and from the looks of the poll results there are a lot of companies who are looking at it as a valid option (or some hosting bigot kept voting). In the poll update series, the Hosted email poll shows hosting ALL email functions can help a lot of businesses

 
  0.0%

Yes, but just the archiving/backup

  5.6%

No way, we’ve got easy to use appliances

  5.6%

Yes, but just the inbound messaging

61.1%

Yes, all email functions should be hosted

  5.6%

Yes, but just the mobile connectivity

  5.6%

No way, the costs don’t match our business needs

16.7%

Sort of, we want to/are outsource(ing) support of our internal application

eMail: Hosting

March 9, 2007

The email hosting survey has been interesting, it has had a few votes and there has been a little more buzz surrounding the Microsoft Exchange Hosting Services offering.

One thing that is more interesting about the whole suite of hosted solutions is the different options for hosting or otherwise outsourcing…..everything, inbound traffic only, archival, administrative staff, etc, etc…

If you are thinking your business would rather just outsource everything…and keep no email services onsite, check out MSExchange.org’s chart of the Exchange based hosted email options. (there are a lot of other non-Exchange options not included in the comparison that you should also evaluate)…..

Hosted eMail Services

February 16, 2007

There has been much debate and many new reports about hosted eMail services lately. A lot of this is due to the increase in SPAM, regulations, and viruses traversing the internet. MS has commissioned a paper on the benefits of hosted solutions over in-house messaging management….

David Spark asked me to look at this paper on Microsoft Exchange Hosted Services. From the looks of it, the same ask has been making the rounds to Terry Zink and Alec Saunders….but there aren’t very many opinions expressed on the wiki or the discussion group…I started to input my thoughts on the subject and the absense of supporting research…..

The paper itself seems to be based on Osterman Research work and there are some interesting research points that simply aren’t supportive of the claims in the paper. Some of the issues are…..

  1. In general the paper’s “findings” are not supported by the research quoted
  2. No discussion of the existing market is included
  3. No context is given for claims of cost savings or reliability
  4. Enterprise environments are not considerred
  5. Comparison against tenured appliances is not included
  6. Labor is generalized as high cost with no numbers to back it up

Now I’m sure there is plenty of data to support and refute the six items above in the context of hosted messaging services (especially in the case of the Microsoft Exchange Hosted Services)…..but they are not included in the paper and there is an opportunity to include them for people to see…..

So if you have an interest in hosted messaging components, you might want to take a look and ensure there is a consise opinion on the wiki fro the community (and other vendors) at large.

If you don’t have the time to comment, at least go vote on the hosting poll….

(results from the poll to be posted soon)