The steam roller of Information Security continues to run down the hill towards education. Becta’s in the driving seat, and they haven’t really started the engine. By the time the new term begins, there will be new guidance on what schools, and colleges should be doing (read my previous posts on the Schools blog). It may be useful for partners to put half a day aside to attend the free Microsoft Security Symposium for the Public Sector on Tuesday September 16th at our London offices near Victoria station.
If you’ve not heard about new Government guidelines for Information Security, then read this website or the specific Mandatory Mininimum Measures from the Cabinet Office (yes, it does apply to schools, and that is what Becta’s advice is being developed to address)
“Effective use of information is absolutely central to the challenges facing Government today – whether in improving health, tackling child poverty or protecting the public from crime and terrorism. Those in public service need to keep that information secure in order to build public confidence. This is essential to underpin greater data sharing to deliver personalised services and make us more effective.”
Sir Gus O’Donnell, Cabinet Secretary Foreword to Cabinet Office Report – Data Handling Procedures in Government, June 2008
Managing information risk today means looking even further into the future. Increasingly, mobile and distributed technologies require new forms of monitoring and data protection. Internet-based applications and services that store and process valuable information need new levels of responsibility on the part of management and users. Regulations against leakage will only be met through unprecedented levels of security awareness and information expertise on the part of users.
Recent reviews by the Cabinet Office (Data Handling Procedures in Government - June 2008) and the Information Commissioner (Data Sharing Review – July 2008) are a clear indication of how seriously Government takes the challenges of information security.
The Microsoft Security Symposium for the Public Sector on Tuesday September 16th at the Microsoft Campus in Reading will focus on the unique challenges that all Public Sector organisations need to address to protect citizen data and sensitive information more effectively. Our Security Symposium takes a holistic view of information governance and security by examining the people, process AND technology components of effective organisational security.
You’ll have the opportunity to hear from a range of security experts including:
The event is open to all IT, security and information governance and compliance in education. The content will be most applicable to whoever is responsible for data use in school (typically, one of the leadership team) as well as the Network Manager who’s likely to be the hero of the hour (when they help solve the leadership headache)
You can review the full agenda, which runs from 9.30-1.15, and reserve your place here:
PHONE: 0870 166 6680 (Event reference: 3169)
The interest in Live@Edu is growing rapidly and there are only a few places left at the forthcoming partner event. The presentations will be at Thames Valley Park, Building 2 and will run from 09:30 – 15:00. To sign up for the event send email to Mitch Phypers: firstname.lastname@example.org
19th August 2008 – Partner Roundtable Event
Microsoft Campus, Building 2, Marlow Meeting Room
The Live@edu programme has gathered momentum, and the number of institutions adopting the service has grown. This event will enable networking among colleagues, and an opportunity to discuss the future roadmap and service releases. The agenda is focussed on interactive discussion and structured feedback about how we can make the programme more successful and pertinent to you as existing partners.
Attendees should report to Building 2 reception where they will be met by one of the Microsoft team
09.30 – 10.00
Arrival & networking – coffee, tea & refreshments will be provided
10.00 – 10.30
Welcome & introduction – objectives for the day, overall UK education team purpose & mission
10.30 – 11.30
Programme update & roadmap:
· Exchange Labs
· Windows Live Services – Wave 3 release
Matthew Fox / Ben Appleby / Ian Moulster
11.30 – 12.30
Partner feedback & reflection session – opportunity to discuss in small groups with presenters the content thus far and impact it might have on individual implementations
12.30 – 13.15
13.15 – 14.00
UK Marketing – objectives for joint PR, events and speaking opportunities. Available resources and partnering more closely with Microsoft
Ray Fleming/Mark A’Bear
14.00 – 14.45
14.45 – 15.00
Final actions, next steps – event close
There are a number of new courses available which would be worth checking out:
Microsoft Learning Forefront Online Technical Training
Learn the technical aspects of Forefront Client and Server in these free two-hour Microsoft Learning eClinics online.
Forefront Security for SharePoint
In this lab you will learn about scanning documents for viruses and how to run a manual scan job.
Managing Microsoft Updates with System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) 2007
Get hands-on experience configuring integration between WSUS 3.0 and Configuration Manager, analyzing required updates, distributing an update, and using Configuration Manager Reporting to report update status.
Understanding Activation and Validation in Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 (Level 200)
Get a business and technical overview of the activation and validation changes in Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008. Volume Activation 2.0 supports new types of license keys and several new modes of activation for customers deploying Windows using volume licensing rights. We also cover changes to Key Management Service (KMS) and Multiple Activation Key (MAK), Volume License Keys (VLKs), notification versus reduced functionality mode (RFM), activation grace periods, and re-arms.
New CTP3 Grava Authoring Tool and Player are available! To install follow these links (use Internet Explorer 6 or higher):
Note: You must have .Net Framework 3.5 installed on your computer before installing Grava. Get .Net Framework 3.5 here.
Please note that we've made major changes and improvements to both, Grava Authoring Tool and Player, so samples and projects created with previous versions of Grava will not work with this CTP3 release. Please refer to the CTP3 Release Notes for more information about the changes and requirements.
We're always looking forward to help you get started with Grava, so feel free to post any questions on this Newsgroup, provide suggestions and bug reports on the Feedback section, or email us to email@example.com.
A number of you have spotted that the recently released SLK Course Manager was not quite as expected. It was a surprise to us in the UK as well! I’ve included a screenshot below, but also got some clarification from the product group on what is happening. I would encourage those reading this blog to provide feedback directly on Codeplex. So, what is the position?
The main change lies in the UI which is very different from previous screenshots. The product group is currently producing training materials on how to customise the UI so that partners can differentiate themselves. Furthermore there will be a Software Development Kit (SDK) released that will help with customisation as well as supporting the addition of new features. I've been assured that UI changes are straightforward to make! Some partners have welcomed the generic UI as it allows them to customise in line with customer requirements.
Within the next few days Codeplex will be updated with more information, possibly including a separate section for Course Manager. A further reassurance is that SLK Course Manager will run on the released version of SLK 1.3.1 when available. I’m hoping that the new information on Codeplex will include the timescales associated with these developments. I’ll try and post new information on the blog as I get it.
Launch of integrated PC that uses less energy than a 60Watt light bulb
Environmental concerns are growing; none more so than in Education. As a result this new power saving PC from Akhter could help with TCO, sustainability and other ‘green’ requirements.
Using just 55W in normal use LoCO2PC is the ultimate eco-friendly computer. It is the first 3GHz integrated PC to qualify under Europe’s stringent Energy Star 4.0 benchmark. The LoCO2PC can potentially reduce power bills to around one third that of the existing desktop PCs, that LoCO2PC is set to replace. Built as a single unit the LoCO2PC includes performance computer, stereo speakers, DVD writer and 19 inch monitor.
Energy Star 4.0 is an upgraded environmental standard recently mandated across the EU for all public procurement. The LoCO2PC’s consume just 55W in normal use (less than a conventional light bulb for the total PC system including the built-in LCD screen. In sleep mode it consumes just 3W of power, an advantage where machines are left on overnight. Institutions that use LoCO2PCs can expect to gain substantial payback through savings on their power bills, estimated at £225 per PC over four years, and this saving increases dramatically, if PCs are regularly left on overnight. For more information go to: http://www.akhter.co.uk
Windows® SteadyState™ 2.5 is now available on Windows XP and Windows Vista. Whether you manage computers in a school computer lab or an Internet café, a library, or even in your home, Windows SteadyState helps make it easy for you to keep your computers running the way you want them to, no matter who uses them.
Windows SteadyState runs on genuine copies of Windows XP Professional, Windows XP Home Edition, Windows XP Tablet PC Edition, Windows Vista Business, Windows Vista Ultimate, Windows Vista Home Basic, Windows Vista Home Premium, and Windows Vista Starter. And, Windows SteadyState is offered free of charge to Windows Genuine Advantage customers!
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/results.aspx?pocId=&freetext=&DisplayLang=en – Search for: SteadyState
Windows SteadyState includes the following features to help you manage your shared computers:
Also available from Microsoft Downloads is:
The Hunterstone Curriculum Standards tools allow you to Define and Upload a library of Curriculum Standards and assign those standards to documents within a SharePoint Site.
The Curriculum Standards tools consist of three primary components:
The tool will be available from Sunday 6 July at: http://www.hunterstone.com
There are 16 million students in England, Wales & Scotland
Now, that’s a BIG number, and I’ll break it down a bit more, because there’s some detail you need to know about.
If you were looking for a quick summary, rule-of-thumb, easy-to-remember view of this:
The long awaited Course Manager (SLK Add-on Pack) has now been released on Codeplex at: http://www.codeplex.com/SLK
Course Manager is an SLK add-on that provides additional features to help instructors with course planning, assignment tracking, and marking.
SLK Course Manager is an add-on to SLK that adds the following two Web Part Pages:
These Web Part Pages help instructors do the following:
SLK Course Manager uses the original SLK application programming interfaces (APIs) to assign, grade, and check the current status of activities.
There are some system requirements as follows:
If you have feedback on Course Manager, join the Codeplex Community and give your feedback directly to the product group.