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Savage on IT: the new Dynamics CRM Online 2013 and other top IT news stories

Author by James Savage

This month’s top IT news on Microsoft technologies and enterprise business solutions  includes stories covering a host of new releases from Microsoft: Dynamics CRM Online 2013; the much-anticipated Windows 8.1 rollout; Windows Azure Government Cloud; and the release of SQL Server 2014 CTP2.

Microsoft begins rolling out CRM Online 2013. Microsoft began releasing the latest version of Dynamics CRM Online 2013—also called “Orion”—on October 7. But not all aspects of the service are fully operational yet, as features such as the on-premises complement are scheduled for release later in the month (from ZDNet).

Microsoft outlines upcoming enterprise cloud services and products. In a media briefing of Microsoft’s cloud strategy, Satya Nadella noted that Microsoft is the only cloud services provider offering widely used cloud software services, a scalable global public cloud, and infrastructure for a company-built cloud (from The Seattle Times).

Microsoft embraces, celebrates enterprise roots in cloud push. Microsoft released a host of new Windows-oriented software on October 18, including Windows Server 2012 R2, System Center 2012 R2, Visual Studio, and .NET 4.5.1. New to Windows Azure is a government cloud license that gives discounts on Windows Azure services to business customers with enterprise agreements (from GigaOM).

Microsoft starts rolling out Windows 8.1. The general availability (GA) phase of Windows 8.1 began on October 17. The Windows 8.1 update is now available for free download for current users of Windows 8 or Windows RT and comes preloaded on new devices and boxed software (from ZDNet).

Tech industry-backed Alliance for Affordable Internet aims to bring the developing world online. Microsoft is one of 30 technology-industry organizations supporting the Alliance for Affordable Internet, which will focus on emerging technologies that help reduce the high cost of internet access across the world (from The Next Web).

Microsoft, VMware, and the year of the hybrid cloud. Some recent developments in cloud migration and integration solutions may be proof that hybrid clouds are the wave of the future (from Venture Beat).

Microsoft releases SQL Server 2014 CTP2. The second SQL Server 2014 Community Technology Preview (CTP)—Microsoft’s relational database management system—was released late last week. Features include an in-memory OLTP engine and native code execution, allowing for highly accelerated operations with certain workloads and queries (from ZDNet).

Windows Phone 8.1: everything you need to know. While the biggest changes to Windows Phone won’t be available until early next year, you can track current and upcoming General Distribution Releases (GDR) here (from The Verge).

Microsoft Adds Email App To Windows 8.1. The Windows 8.1 operating system update includes a tablet-friendly email app that’s built the time-saving feature Sweep and other integrations (from Tech Week Europe).


James Savage

James Savage is the President of Concurrency, Inc., an information technology solution company he founded 1989. Its customers are among the most successful communication, construction, financial, insurance, logistics, and manufacturing companies in the Midwest.