As any new technology takes hold, our vocabulary inevitably changes. New terms and phrases, or new meanings, take hold and our vernacular grows and changes.
When you talk to technologists about cloud, the term du jour is Workload.
Talking cloud, workload refers to any measurable utilization of cloud services. The more technical use refers to processor, memory, storage, or network loads. Workload often refers to a “package” of cloud use. The package may be part of an application, a full application, or a set of integrated applications.
Email is a workload; a file sync-and-share service is a workload; a back-end database is a workload; website analytics is a workload. The challenge, of course, is that your business does not think or run on technology components. You have people, processes, systems, and services.
When planning your cloud presence, think of workloads in terms of business functions and systems. Yes, email may be a workload. But so may be your “communication services”, or your “customer service” function, or you “analytics services”. By looking at workload in terms of your business, you will be less likely to fragment your cloud and on-premise systems. Building and managing the hybrid environment will be simpler and more effective over time.
To discuss your workloads and which may be best in the cloud, contact us for a free and no obligation consultation.
Now, Google Apps Administrators can receive email alert notifications when changes are made to user accounts or services settings.
User Alerts include:
- User suspended (by an administrator)
- New user added
- Suspended user made active
- User deleted
- User’s password changed (by an administrator)
- User granted Admin privilege
- User’s Admin privilege revoked
Service Alerts include:
- Drive settings changed
- Calendar settings changed
- Gmail settings changed
- Mobile settings changed
Up until now, recovering a Google Apps administrative account password required setting a fixed secondary, off-domain, email address in the Google Apps Admin Console.
Earlier this week, Google announced an upgrade to the capability, giving every super administrator the ability to recover their account password via email or mobile phone.
For more information on adding recovery options to your administration accounts, review this video.
One of the common criticisms of cloud solutions and Google Apps is the lack of administrative capabilities. For the most part, this criticism is unfounded as many of these capabilities are no longer needed when you are free from managing the hardware and network resources behind your applications.
Beyond the so-called “paradigm-shift”, Google is aggressively adding administrative capabilities. Some of the new features include:
- Restrict users ability to download “native”/legacy (non-Google) format files, such as .doc, .ppt, and .pdf files.
- Allow delegated administrators to wipe mobile devices
- Allowing delegated administrators to use non-primary domains
- Expanded reporting and administrative APIs
- Expanded Mobile Management, including:
- Granular policies: Configure mobile settings at the organizational unit level
- Device activation: Control what devices can connect to your users’ Google Apps data
- Device console: View all mobile devices in your domain connecting with Google Sync or Android Sync
While most computer environments have at least one network administration account with unrestricted access, many administrators have moved to segment administrative responsibilities across different individuals and departments.
Last week, this capability was added to Google Apps control panel.
Google Apps now has two (2) levels of administrators:
Super Administrators have complete access to the Google Apps administrator control panel and can perform all administrator actions.
Restricted Administrators are given the ability to manage specific tabs in the control panel. For each tab, you can allow/restrict certain administrative functions.
Both Super and Restricted Administrators have the ability to:
- The ability to view and edit other users’ Google Sites
- Rights to use the Google Apps administrative APIs, such as the Provisioning API
- The ability to log into the Google Apps administrator control panel
Details of the available admin functions and how you can restrict functions can be found here.
Please note that distribution of administrative capabilities is not available by organization unit at this time. Administrators granted access to a control panel tab have the ability to manage those functions for all users.
IT Departments can now segment administrative responsibilities by function, providing many organizations with the ability to segment responsibilities. The change also supports common division of responsibilities between Help Desk and “Tier 2” support staff. Help desk staff can not be empowered to change passwords, for example, without giving them the ability to create new users.
The impact of this change is significant as this capability has been often requested by mid-size and enterprise IT departments.
To help enterprises better manage mobile devices like iPhones, Google recently added enterprise admin policies for iPhone, Nokia E Series, and Windows Mobile devices. The capability lets you:
- Remotely wipe all data from lost or stolen mobile devices
- Lock idle devices after a period of inactivity
- Require a device password on each phone
- Set minimum lengths for more secure passwords
- Require passwords to include letters, numbers and punctuation
Similar features are expected for Nexus One and Droid phones soon.
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