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Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference 2011 news

Find out what VARs are hearing (and saying) about Microsoft's news at the Worldwide Partner Conference 2011 in LA.

LOS ANGELES -- As thousands of Microsoft partners gather this week for the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference 2011, there’s a lot of expectations and questions over the company’s evolving cloud strategy. Attendees want to know how the vendor and its partners can battle Google, Amazon and other new-era cloud players, as well as other rivals such as VMware, Apple and Oracle.

Check out this site to find out what VARs are hearing (and saying) about Microsoft’s news at the Worldwide Partner Conference.

Microsoft LARs ponder new requirements
Starting in October, Microsoft large account resellers will have to put two staffers through T-36 online training. This is part of the vendor’s effort to get Microsoft LARs focus more on services instead of software license transactions.

Microsoft: Security issues in cloud computing leads to partner revenue
Microsoft laid out its strategy for resolving cloud security problems at WPC 2011. According to Microsoft, security issues in cloud computing can translate to additional revenue streams for Microsoft partners.

Microsoft cloud partner wins award for access management solution
Microsoft cloud partner Omada received an award at WWPC 2011 for its access management solution, providing an example of the choices available to Microsoft channel partners whose customers need greater security in the cloud.

Hyper-V Replica, Windows Server 8 debut at Microsoft WPC 2011
Microsoft previews its Hyper-V Replica and Windows Server 8 at WPC while partners share how they've managed to find success when up against VMware.

Microsoft's yen for EA renewals drives Windows 8 push
With some IT shops hesitant to renew their Microsoft enterprise licensing agreements, Microsoft is redoubling efforts to get Windows XP users over to Windows 7 and 8.

Microsoft promises more Azure disclosure to partners
Acknowledging its history of secrecy regarding Azure, Microsoft revealed plans to give partners a glimpse of its roadmap for the Platform as a Service project every six months.

At WPC 2011, content sparse for Microsoft security partners
Microsoft itself didn’t have a ton of security-related news but Symantec, Kaspersky Lab were there at WPC 2011 in force to promote their products.

Microsoft’s mobile strategy: Too little, too late for partners?
Despite generally good reviews for Windows Phone 7, VARs coming into the show remained confused about Microsoft’s mobile strategy and hoped the company could make some sense of it after several weak efforts.

Microsoft tries out master VAR plan for Dynamics channel
Microsoft wants fewer -- but bigger and stronger -- Dynamics VARs to sell its four enterprise resource planning lines. The company will pilot a master VAR program to help smaller affiliates bond with large VARs.

MDOP 2011 R2 brings new security, management tools
The BitLocker administration tool in Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack 2011 R2 helps IT pros manage encryption policies. MDOP 2011 R2 also includes DaRT and AIS updates.

Microsoft partners get reprieve on revenue targets
Gold partners screamed foul when Microsoft initiated target revenue requirements for them to retain their top-tier status. But the company has now pushed back the deadline for earning against that number for another year and, more important, has finally published the target figures.

Microsoft throws select partners a bone with Office 365
Microsoft angered traditional partners when it refused to let them bill for its hosted Business Productivity Online Suite. With the new Office 365, it’s cracked open the door -- a bit. Microsoft will allow select hosters, ISPs and telcos to resell Office 365, as long as they bundle it with their own software and services.

Channel Marker blogs

Parting WPC thoughts from partners
Here some parting thoughts from attendees on the Microsoft Lync solution incentive program and Windows 8 as the WPC wound down.

Microsoft warns of VMware ‘vTax’
VMware’s controversial new licensing model in vSphere 5 didn’t go unnoticed at Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Conference.

“They are dangerously close to announcing their next vThing as a vTax,” said Amy Barzdukas, an executive in Microsoft’s server and tools business, in an interview.

Ballmer talks Hyper-V, cloud at WPC
Microsoft’s CEO cited Hyper-V’s role as a key building block in Microsoft’s overall cloud strategy and alluded to the new features added in Service Pack 1 earlier this year. But he spent a lot more time on the sizzle of Xbox, Bing and Windows Phone than on the steak of server virtualization.

WPC 2011: A newbie’s top ten list
For most software VARs and integrators, partner shows are old hat. Here’s what a first-timer found interesting about WPC 2011.

Microsoft WPC 2011 by the numbers
Here are some fun facts to know and tell (or not) about WPC 2011.

Microsoft, ‘the F word’ and top ten questions for WPC
Microsoft partners want to know all about the Azure cloud and a possible franchise plan for partners. Here are their top ten questions for WPC 2011.

Let us know what you think about the story; email Barbara Darrow, Senior News Director at

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