woensdag 18 juli 2012

Office 365 preview, quick overview of new layout

Yesterday Microsoft revealed all new products for 2013, Lync, Exchange, Sharepoint, Office and Office 365.
In this post I will do a quick overview of the new Office 365 layout.
When you log on to Office 365 preview portal, it is all different.
Microsoft gave office 365 the full Metro treatment.
I will go through all of the left menu’s and show you how this looks and what has changed

Dashboard

The Office 365 dashboard is improved and health status and maintenance are shown in the front page. The green bars show all services as healthy.
The lay-out has changed as well, admin shortcuts have moved to the right upper corner, and the admin tools have moved to a menu in the top “ribbon”. Menu items have been consolidated to get a more “clean” menu.

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Ribbon / Office 365 Preview settings
The ribbon is still there, improved a bit.
From here you can go to Outlook Web App, your calendar, your contacts, the Sharepoint Newsfeed, Skydrive ( shortcut to SkyDrive ) , Sites ( shortcut to Mysite ), Projects ( Assigned projects), Office store ( buy or download Office add-ins like Linkedin for Outlook etc ), Admin ( Admin centers ).


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There is also a little settings icon, from here you can update your personal profile, download Software or get help setting up your Outlook profile or Phone.
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Setup
The setup menu allows you to choose between basic setup and custom setup.
Basic setup is the “cloud only” setup, where in the custom setup you will be redirected to documentation on how to setup “Hybrid deployments”.

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Users and Groups
Not much has changed here, besides the fact that users and groups have been consolidated.
The filter options are still the same, as well as batch import of users using a CSV.

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Domains
This is still the same, lay-out has been changed but that’s about it.
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Service settings
Now this is new. All of the settings for Lync, Exchange, Sharepoint from one console.
In the below screenshot, mail is selected, from where you can jump to all of the commonly used settings for Exchange / antispam etc. No more need to login to the FOPE console to do your Anti - SPAM settings. A major improvement in comparison with the current Office 365 tools. This is some sort of quick reference chart to common settings, to get to the detailed settings for the services you need to open the admin centers for the service you want to configure.
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Service Health

Still the same as the current “service healt”, although it looks a lot better!
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Support
Some links have changed, others removed but in general this page is still the same.

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Admin Tools
I know you were wondering, where are links to the admin tools that used to be on the Admin Overview?
Well, they have been put into a little menu in the upper right corner.
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From here, you can go to all of the admin pages for the different product included in Office 365.
This is just a sneak peak in the new Office 365 preview, I will go into the Exchange and Lync admin pages later and explain what’s new and show screens of how it looks.
OWA also had major improvements and is almost a web based clone of Outlook 2013.

Hope you enjoyed!

dinsdag 17 juli 2012

Office 2013 revealed! Quick overview, Consumer preview available for download

Last night Microsoft revealed the 2013 version for Office.

So, whats new?
The interface. The new Office is all about Metro, it lookes nice and is touch friendly. 
There is also a new way of buying Office, you can get subscriptions ( through Office 365 ) , or still buy boxed versions.
Office is offered on a “stream on demand” base when purchased through Office 365, or you can install the click to run version.

Microsofts vision is that you buy Office for yourself, not for a device.
When using Skydrive, and your account had a subscription for Office, you don’t have to install Office, once you open a document, the application streams down from the internet and installs itself. You will get the app on demand, with your own settings and documents synced through SkyDrive.

Office 2013 Metro and new UI
Office is fully integrated in the Metro style UI of Windows 8, but is also still offered as a desktop application. In this release the only Metro styled apps are OneNote and Lync, but that will probably be different in the final release.
The Metro apps are specially designed and optimized for the touch interface of a tablet.

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Here is an example of the new Word interface. Word starts with the screen below.
You will see an overview of recent documents and an overview of available templates.

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Onze you are editing a document, you will notice that the interface has also changed to the metro style UI which is familiar to the Windows 8 style.

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Office 2013 new features
One of the features I’m pleased with it the option to reply to comments, very nice!
It is also possible to open and edit PDF documents in Word and even save them as Word files. ( Not all PDF files )
Also Outlook has a lot of changes! It is possible to reply e-mails without opening a new window, you will still be able to see the inbox whyle replying.
The preview pane for Mail, Calendar, People and tasks is also new, you can also pin the preview pane so you can easily access people or calendar items.

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There are a lot more new features, but these were the ones that pleased me and feeled the urge to share those :).

Pricing and release date
There is no further information on pricing  or release dates, but it will probably get release Q1 of 2013.

So, where can I get it?
To download Office 2013 Consumer preview, go to :
http://www.microsoft.com/en-gb/officepreview

When you click sign up, you will be redirected to the click to run install.

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Once you click install the Home Premium version of Office 2013 will be installed.
You have 5 installs available for you.
This is the streaming version of Office 2013, so it can be installed next to you local installation of Office 2010 ( if you use 32 bit, use the 32 bit install, same goes for 64 bit version )

In the next couple of weeks I will go into the new interfaces of for example Lync and Outlook, this is just a minor teaser :)