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  • Windows 7 ESU year two oddities

    Posted on January 15th, 2021 at 21:45 Susan Bradley Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    According to the thread in the Microsoft Tech Community:

    Year two: Extended Security Updates for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 – Microsoft Tech Community

    Here are some interesting things about the Year 2 ESU license.

    Oddity number 1:  While you can’t buy year 2 of the ESU without having an existing (or new) order for year 1 on your account, you can install the year 2 ESU without and having the year 1 ESU installed.  I guess you’d have this situation if you were reinstalling/rebuilding a Windows 7 machine.

    Oddity number 2:  We don’t think there is a “test” update like last year.

    Overall, I have less clients this year asking for these ESUs as they’ve replaced many of their machines with Windows 10 in the past year.

  • Attention partners: Microsoft really is coming for your clients this time

    Posted on January 13th, 2021 at 13:34 amybabinchak Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Microsoft has made the mistake of going around its partners in the past. Isn’t buying direct the way to go? No, not really. When there’s a healthy marketplace of trained professionals supporting and consulting small businesses then they are able to get just the type of support they want and work with someone that understands thier business goals and can help them move the technology in the same direction that their business is going. When the market isn’t attractive to partners, then consumers of the product have less choice and fewer support options. What Microsoft is doing here is alarming and all should be concerned. From end user, partner to distributor.

    Repost from Third Tier: Microsoft really is coming for your clients this time – Ultimate Support for IT Pros – ThirdTier

    There’s been a lot of false claims in the past that Microsoft was coming for your clients. But in this new round of intrusion into the trusted CSP-Client relationship, Microsoft really is coming for your clients. All around forums, user groups and social media the emails are being circulated and they are scary. In one complaint that I read on a private MVP group, the CSP, well let’s just quote them, “We almost lost a 50k/month Azure WVD client as Microsoft offered their implementation for free. We kept the client onboard thankfully, thanks to value-added services”

    I understand that Microsoft has a problem with some resellers not providing depth nor breadth of services to clients and tying those clients up making it difficult for other more active and consultive CSP’s and MSP’s to expand, but Microsoft really needs a way to determine whether a partner is active with the client or whether they have sold, migrated and are done. Those of us working actively with our clients shouldn’t be subject to any competitor coming in and disrupting our business.

    Here are a couple of samples of the email that your clients are getting from Microsoft.

    On Azure:

    I hope this email finds you well! My name is Blake Wheeler,and I am reaching out on behalf of Microsoft’s Azure Team. I spoke to Lisa from (Edit: Client name) and she referred me to reach out to you. I was reaching out to Lisa about the opportunity to participate in a Complimentary Deep Dive Evaluation. This will help you and your team assess any Cyber Security Threats, overutilization and/or underutilization of your network and provide a complete network and hardware scan for (Edit: client name) with reports tailored the way you want them.

    The first step for this evaluation is scheduling a Teams meeting with our Evaluations Specialist where they will go over the process in more detail. Please let me know a good date/time that you had 15-30 minutes of availability next week and I will get everything set up. I have attached a short deck with information on the process as well.

    On 365:

    On 365:

    Happy New Years! My name is [MS-REPNAME] and I work directly for Microsoft to help businesses get the most out of their relationship with Microsoft and I was recently assigned to support you and your company. I assist with device procurement and discounting, end-user training, general IT questions, licensing, etc.

    Do you have time for a brief intro call this week so we can learn how to best advance your IT strategies moving forward?

    Thank you! We look forward to a great partnership!


    If those email copies don’t make you angry, as they do this Microsoft fan, then perhaps re-read them. I’m not the alarmist type but this intrusion into the relationship with my client has really taken me aback.

  • January 2021 updates are here

    Posted on January 12th, 2021 at 13:07 Susan Bradley Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    So this is the time of the Patch Tuesday that I call “Reading time”.  I start reading all the security blogs about patching and start seeing if there are side effects.

    Ghacks is here.

    ZDnet is here

    Zeroday is here

    I don’t see an official listing for Office patches at this time, I’ll post that when I see it.

    So far the items of interest are Defender having a bug that was probably already fixed on your machine.

    The .NET patches that really only include optional updates and not NEW security updates which means they may be offered up to you but you don’t have to install them (making them somewhat confusing).

    Of more concern to me is once again we have to dig into the details… as Dustin Childs said… ” Again, without executive summaries, we can only speculate the true severity of these bypasses.”

    Edit:  I STILL see Office 2010 updates out today.

    Edit: Updates are now also available for Office 2013 and Office 2016.


  • MS-DEFCON 2 – Get ready for January updates

    Posted on January 11th, 2021 at 10:33 Susan Bradley Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Remember it’s time to prepare for January updates by delaying /or pausing updates.  Also I’m ready to give the all clear to 2004 if you want to do it before tomorrow’s patch Tuesday (or later on in the month).

    More in Computerworld.

  • What do you want?

    Posted on January 11th, 2021 at 00:50 Susan Bradley Comment on the AskWoody Lounge


    What do you want?

    Nice to meet you, how do you do?

    Thank you. To the over 4,000 AskWoody newsletter readers who answered our first-ever survey, thank you for taking the time to let us know what you want and don’t want. We were surprised and enormously grateful for the tremendous response.

    The survey is now closed, giving me the opportunity to share some of the results with you.

    Your use of Microsoft operating systems is in line with what the larger Microsoft ecosystem is using. In the larger Microsoft population, nearly 90% are using Windows 10. So, too, are AskWoody readers (91 percent are using Windows 10). The AskWoody readership represents a slightly greater number of users of Windows 7 (12.9 percent) versus the larger population (8.5 percent). Windows 8/8.1 users are in the distinct minority with approximately 3 percent in both the larger Microsoft user base and the AskWoody readership.

    Read the full story in AskWoody Plus Newsletter 18.1.0 (2021-01-11).

  • Time to adapt while acknowledging the past

    Posted on January 11th, 2021 at 00:40 Will Fastie Comment on the AskWoody Lounge


    Time to adapt while acknowledging the past

    By Will Fastie, Editor

    I’m excited. I’m flattered. I’m honored.

    I have been a subscriber to this newsletter since the beginning, 18 years ago. Last fall I contributed a few articles, then was flattered to be considered for this post. I was honored when I was chosen and am excited to get going. This newsletter has always been a great resource and both Susan and I are committed to making it even better.

    As a long-time subscriber, I deeply understand the importance of continuity. I surely would not
    have read the newsletter for so long without its steady pace and dependable content. That is a past we must acknowledge; the incredible response to our survey makes that plain. Every minute of our planning has respected our loyal audience. You will not be abandoned.

    Read the full story in AskWoody Plus Newsletter 18.1.0 (2021-01-11).

  • Stop paying $200 a year for your Internet cable modem

    Posted on January 11th, 2021 at 00:30 Will Fastie Comment on the AskWoody Lounge


    Stop paying $200 a year for your Internet cable modem

    By Brian Livingston

    If there’s anything I hate, it’s paying $15 or $20 a month for something I don’t want or need.

    Now our political system — such as it is — has done something about it. A law passed by Congress went into effect just a few days ago: December 20, 2020, to be exact. ISPs (Internet service providers) are now prohibited from charging you a monthly “equipment fee” for connection devices you bought and installed yourself.

    ISPs know all about this law, which is called the Television Viewer Protection Act (TVPA). It was supposed to go into effect last year on June 20, but cable and telephone companies pressured the FCC to delay its protections for six months. But now, if you own your own hardware, one call to your ISP should get the charge removed — although it should already have disappeared from your bill.

    Read the full story in AskWoody Plus Newsletter 18.1.0 (2021-01-11).

  • Controlling Win10’s sometimes hyperactive security apps

    Posted on January 11th, 2021 at 00:20 Will Fastie Comment on the AskWoody Lounge


    Controlling Win10’s sometimes hyperactive security apps

    By Fred Langa

    Win10’s built-in security tools offer excellent protection but can be annoying with frequent update cycles and tons of notifications.

    In fact, the amount of activity made one reader wonder whether his security setup was actually broken! Here’s how to tell, and how to make it behave better.

    Plus: More on Win10’s 30 built-in Troubleshooters.

    Read the full story in AskWoody Plus Newsletter 18.1.0 (2021-01-11).