Listing of learning opportunities

I find the Microsoft properties vast and fertile locations to find good contextual and relevant training material.

It’s true… With properties like the ones bellow, there is so much content, that it become hard to keep track of all the sessions you want to review.


I’m always going through and finding gems, and the week after that someone asks me “where did you find that?” , “where can I learn this?”

To address those question, I started keeping a list. I' started keeping this list mostly for me at first. But for the benefit of my fellow IT pros, I decided I’d post it and keep it updated every time I find a gem.

Here are the rules regarding this list:

1- The first rule of fight…. Oops wrong list.

1- The first rule is “this is not an all-encompassing list of available resource” (that means I will miss a few). if you find something that you find useful and that is not on this list, let me know.

2- Second rule. We don’t maintain the sites where the links come from. So the links may change and/or disappear without notice. (so if you find a dead link, let me know).

3- Have fun.

4- Keep learning.

5- BE AWESOME!!! That is the most important rule.


Like I said, bookmark this page or subscribe to it. The whole team will be updating it as we find new content.

below that is content for:

  1. Office 2013
  2. Windows Server 2012
  3. System Center 2012



So here are your calls to action…get downloading and testing the new versions of Windows client, Windows server and System Center for yourself:

  1. Subscribe to this blog.
  2. Download the Office 365 Preview and see how it can make your life easier.
  3. Download Windows 8 Enterprise and take a look at the changes and improvements the new client will bring to your organization.
  4. Download Windows Server 2012 evaluation and start exploring the how Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012 are better together.
  5. Download System Center 2012 SP1 Beta to start testing your deployment and management of Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012.



Signature (2012_09_06 13_24_05 UTC)

Pierre Roman, MCITP , ITIL | IT Pro AdvisorTwitter | Facebook | LinkedIn




Here are some I found covering the new Office 2013 and Office 365

New Office for IT pros

Get the IT pro resources you need to try the new Office (Office 2013 and Office 365 ProPlus) including details about activation, compatibility, and deployment.

Office 2013 Resource Kit

Documentation intended for IT professionals who plan, implement, and maintain Office installations in their organizations. New and updated content s published regularly.
Office IT Pro Blog
Microsoft Office 365 ProPlus Preview Evaluation Resources This link provides information on the following:
  • Office 365 ProPlus Overview
  • Integrating Office 365 ProPlus into Your Organization
  • Office 365 ProPlus Service Components - a look at identity, click-to-run delivery, roaming settings, and other features
  • Office 365 ProPlus Administrator Overview
  • Addressing Compatibility Concerns with Office 365 ProPlus
  • Configuring Office 365 ProPlus Applications and Experiences
  • Client Deployment Options
  • Office 365 ProPlus Security Considerations
  • Activation Experiences in Office 365 ProPlus
  • Getting Started with the Office 365 ProPlus User Experience
Make the switch to the new Office

Make the switch to Outlook 2013

Make the switch to Publisher 2013

Make the switch to Visio 2013

Make the switch to Access 2013

Make the switch to Lync 2013

Make the switch to Word 2013

Make the switch to Project 2013

Make the switch to PowerPoint 2013

Make the switch to Excel 2013

Microsoft Virtual Academy Enable the Consumerization of IT People are increasingly buying their own devices and want the freedom to work and communicate anywhere, anytime, on the device they choose. Opportunities exist to enable greater productivity, hire great employees and keep them happy, but also a responsibility to properly secure and manage devices and data. See how your company cannot afford to block these opportunities and if you do nothing are you sure your data is safe?

Learn how Microsoft can help you responsibly enable this vision to “Consumerize the IT” inside your company. The first overview module is designed to paint the entire picture at a 200 level and then the remaining modules are designed to give you 300 level knowledge for specific scenarios across the various products which relate to Consumerization of IT (i.e. how to configure MDM in SCCM 2012).

This course is NOT designed to make you an expert in each product all-up after the base is installed (i.e. you won't know how to architect, design, or deploy "Product X").
Microsoft Virtual Academy Administering Office 365 for Small Businesses Microsoft’s Small Business Competency team and Microsoft Learning tailored a new exam specifically for partners looking to obtain the SMB Competency. This Jump Start prepares field engineers, network administrators, and related IT professionals for Exam 74-324: Administering Office 365 for Small Business and is offered to individuals interested in acquiring the skills necessary to administer Office 365 for Small Business clients. The popular “Jump Start” virtual classroom approach leverages two experts and an engaging team-teaching approach. We’re excited to introduce you to Chris Oakman from Eastridge Technology and Stephen Hall from District Computers—two Microsoft partners with real world experience and proven success implementing Office 365 for SMB customers. Chris and Steve will deliver this 200-level course via an accelerated, demo-rich learning experience. Hands-on Labs are not be provided. If you do not have access to Office 365, please create an Office 365 trial account on which to practice.






Here are some info regarding Windows Server 2012

Microsoft Virtual Academy Windows Server 2012

Windows Server 2012 offers businesses and service providers a scalable, dynamic, and multitenant platform that allows IT to respond to business needs faster and more efficiently.

After completing the following courses on Windows Server 2012, you will have an understanding of how Windows Server 2012 takes you beyond virtualization, delivers the power of many servers, opens the door to every app on any cloud, and enables the modern workstyle.


Windows Server 2012 Virtual Labs Experience Windows Server 2012 firsthand in these virtual labs. You can test drive new and improved features and functionality, including server management and Windows PowerShell, ne
Windows Server 2012 Jump Start Series Core Hyper-V Start with an accelerated overview then dig right into the Core Hyper-V content. After discussing and illustrating how new Hyper-V features enable better scale, they lead a discussion on NUMA (Non-Uniform Memory Access) and finish the module with Network Virtualization and IP portability. Windows Server 2012 Jump Start (01): Core Hyper-V
Windows Server 2012 Jump Start Series Virtualization Infrastructure

In this two-part module, Rick Claus and Corey Hynes dive into virtualization infrastructure. Throughout the conversation, they demonstrate a variety of new features and functionality covering Shared Nothing Migration, Storage Migration, and Hyper-V Replica. The session finishes with a cool discussion of Hyper-V Server 2012

Windows Server 2012 Jump Start (02a): Virtualization Infrastructure, Part 1

Windows Server 2012 Jump Start (02b): Virtualization Infrastructure, Part 2

Windows Server 2012 Jump Start Series Storage Architecture

This is a two-part module on Storage Architecture. Rick Claus and Corey Hynes focus on an overview of the Windows Server 2012 Storage Platform, including Platform Storage, De-duplication, Disk Provisioning, Clustering, File and Block Access, Networking, Virtualization and Management

Windows Server 2012 Jump Start (03a): Storage Architecture, Part 1

Windows Server 2012 Jump Start (03b): Storage Architecture, Part 2

Windows Server 2012 Jump Start Series Continuous Availability Rick Claus and Corey Hynes dive into Continuous Availability in this demo-rich session. Key topics include Workloads (SQL / Hyper-V), a great discussion of the "modern CHKDSK," File Services SMB Failover, NIC Teaming / Multi-Path IO, Clustering / Cluster-Aware Updating. Windows Server 2012 Jump Start (04): Continuous Availability
Windows Server 2012 Jump Start Series Multi-Server Management In this two-part module on Multi-Server Management. Rick Claus and Corey Hynes focus on demo-rich conversations on essential features like Server Manager, PowerShell w/ ISE, Remote Management Tools and Remote Deployment. Important for students to watch both sessions .

Windows Server 2012 Jump Start (05a): Multi-Server Management, Part 1

Windows Server 2012 Jump Start (05b): Multi-Server Management, Part 2

Windows Server 2012 Jump Start Series Security and Access This is a two-part module on Security and Access. Rick Claus and Corey Hynes provide clear illustrations of how, why and where Windows Server 2012 tools like Server Core, MinShell and full GUI are appropriate. Next, they cover some important improvements to Dynamic Access Control and spend time outlining new changes in Active Directory, the Recycle Bin and password policy.


Windows Server 2012 Jump Start (06a): Security and Access, Part 1

Windows Server 2012 Jump Start (06b): Security and Access, Part 2

Windows Server 2012 Jump Start Series Remote Connectivity and Networking Rick Claus and Corey Hynes dive into Remote Connectivity and Networking in this session. Key topics include Direct Access Setup, BranchCache, and VDI Deployment (Remote Access, Remote Desktop, Pooled vs. Personal, Patching, Storage, RemoteFX). Windows Server 2012 Jump Start (07): Remote Connectivity and Networking
Windows Server 2012 Jump Start Series IIS, DHCP and IPAM In this appropriately-named session, Rick Claus and Corey Hynes leverage a demo-rich conversational approach to cover IIS, DHCP and IP Address Management (IPAM). Essential concepts such as securing and scaling your web servers, certificate support, DHCP failover, and important IPAM topics are covered. Windows Server 2012 Jump Start (08): IIS, DHCP and IPAM
Microsoft Virtual Academy Windows Server 2012: Technical Overview This course is designed to provide you with the key details of Windows Server 2012. The seven modules in this course, through video and whitepaper, provide details of the new capabilities, features, and solutions built into the product. With so many new features to cover, this course is designed to be the introduction to Windows Server 2012. After completing this course, you will be ready to dive deeper into Windows Server 2012 through additional Microsoft Virtual Academy (MVA) courses dedicated to each topic introduced in this “Technical Overview.”

Microsoft Virtual Academy Windows Server 2012: Server Virtualization

This course introduces server virtualization features and capabilities within Windows Server 2012 that enable customers to take advantage of the cost savings of virtualization and make the optimum use of server hardware investment. These features include:

  • Hyper-V Replica, providing replication of Hyper-V virtual machines (VMs) between two locations for business continuity and failure recovery.
  • Live Migration and the changes in Windows Server 2012 to enable different migration scenarios.
  • The ability to run larger VMs on physical hosts.
Microsoft Virtual Academy Windows Server 2012: Storage

Windows Server 2012 introduces many new storage features and capabilities. These new capabilities are designed to provide enhanced reliability, availability, and performance at every layer of the Microsoft storage stack. They allow IT pros to combine features to build powerful new storage solutions, such as the ability to deliver feature-rich high performance storage functionality and performance without sacrificing budget. This course covers a number of these new features, including:

  • Storage Spaces, which is designed to deliver a cost-effective storage solution.
  • SMB 3.0 and the new features in the protocol, including how the new features enhance the reliability, availability, manageability, and performance of file servers.
  • Enhancements to Cluster Shared Volumes (CSV) to extend its benefits beyond Hyper-V to support other application workloads.
  • Resilient file systems, NTFS file system enhancements, and data de-duplication
Microsoft Virtual Academy Windows Server 2012: Identity and Access

Today’s organizations need to give workers access to data and information — across varied networks and devices — while still keeping costs down. Innovations that meet these needs — such as virtualization and cloud-based applications — help organizations maximize existing infrastructure investments, while exploring new services, improving management, and increasing availability. New and enhanced capabilities in Windows Server 2012 help you meet these challenges by making it easier and less costly to ensure secure access to valuable digital assets and comply with regulations. These capabilities include:

  • Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS). Improvements to AD DS installation and deployment and AD Federation Services (AD FS) as a server role.
  • Remote Desktop Services (RDS). Enhancements with Remote Desktop Services (RDS) and easier deployment of Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) solutions.
  • DirectAccess for Remote Access. Helps IT offer users seamless, more secure access to corporate data from virtually any Internet connection.
  • Dynamic Access Control. Used for compliance and data leakage prevention to enable Data Governance.
Microsoft Virtual Academy Using Solution Accelerators to Prepare for Windows Server 2012

Microsoft Solution Accelerators provide tested guidance and automated tools to help you plan, securely deploy, and manage new Microsoft technologies — easier, faster, and at less cost. This course introduces three Solution Accelerators that will help prepare your business for Windows Server 2012.

  • Microsoft Assessment and Planning Toolkit (MAP) 7.0. An agentless inventory, assessment, and reporting tool that can securely assess IT environments for various platform migrations.
  • Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2012 Update 1. Tools and guidance to accelerate and automate deployments of Windows Server 2012 and Windows 8.
  • Microsoft Security Compliance Manager (SCM) 3.0. A single point of management for all of your security baselines.
Microsoft Virtual Academy Windows Server 2012: Networking

Windows Server 2012 introduces new networking features and capabilities that help to reduce networking complexity while lowering costs and simplifying management tasks. These features include:

  • IP Address Management (IPAM) . This provides a framework that enables discovery, management, and monitoring of an IP address space within the network of an organization.
  • Hyper-V Network Virtualization. This is the software-defined networking (SDN) solution that enables you to tackle flexibility challenges in your datacenters by abstracting virtual machine (VM) IP addresses from the underlying physical network addressing and routing, similar to the way in which VMs are abstracted from the hardware of the physical host.
  • Hyper-V extensible switch. This provides an architecture to implement policy enforcement for security, isolation, service levels, and tenant isolation.
  • NIC Teaming. Out of the box network interface card (NIC) teaming is the ability to combine two or more network adapters in a single computer to behave as a single NIC within Windows.
Microsoft Virtual Academy Windows Server 2012: Virtual Desktop Infrastructure

The modern workstyle is increasingly mobile, collaborative, device independent, and cost conscious. Users want independence from specific devices, flexibility in how and where they access their data and applications. At the same time, business computing resources are increasingly treated as centralized commodities. Rather than focusing on particular hardware, IT departments are expected to provide users with a certain level of functionality and accessibility.

  • Microsoft Virtualization Desktop Infrastructure (VDI), powered by Windows Server 2012, empowers you to deploy remote desktop services architectures that provide employees the flexibility to work anywhere, while allowing them to access their corporate desktop or application environment from a range of devices. Windows Server 2012 provides features that:
  • · Give users access to data and applications from virtually anywhere, on whatever device they choose
  • · Enable users to enjoy the full Windows experience, wherever they are
  • · Improve the security of the entire experience while supporting compliance with applicable regulations

After completing this course — through a series of videos and whitepapers — you will have an understanding of the Microsoft Virtualization Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) solution



Microsoft Virtual Academy System Center 2012: Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) This course focuses on how using System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2012 can help your business build, deploy, and maintain a private cloud. After completing these three modules you will have learnt about the Virtual Machine Manager 2012 product, and the features it utilizes to build and support the virtualized and physical resources that are part of your private cloud infrastructure. The course will also expose you to cloud computing at the business level, from the perspective of Virtual Machine Manager 2012, and show how to extend that knowledge to the technical level. The last module will show you how to manage applications within your private cloud using Virtual Machine Manager 2012 to deploy, update, and manage them. At the end, we will have illustrated how using Virtual Machine Manager 2012 as part of your private cloud infrastructure will benefit both your organization and the IT Pro.
Microsoft Virtual Academy System Center 2012: Configuration Manager

This course provides an overview of the new System Center 2012 Configuration Manager product. After completing this course you will understand the features that enable System Center 2012 Configuration Manager to:-

  • Easily distribute applications to users, regardless of device or form factor.
  • Perform software updates.
  • Device management improvements.

The course will also cover how System Center 2012 Configuration Manager makes it easier to service the rapidly growing number of connected devices in your organization, such as smartphones, tablets, and virtual machines, through centralized global configuration management. Course modules will also show you the changes that help simplify the configuration and management of the infrastructure, how to use System Center 2012 Configuration Manager to gain insight to and control IT systems through easier maintenance, improved security and simplified configuration, as well as a number of other new features and updates to self-service application delivery, integrated settings management, antivirus management, UNIX and Linux support, compliance improvements, security updates, the new GUI, and much more!
Microsoft Virtual Academy System Center 2012 Licensing Overview This presentation will provide an overview of the new System Center 2012 Licensing programs. We will look at these programs in the context of Microsoft private cloud solutions, and how the combination of the Windows Server 2008 operating system and System Center enables you to obtain the most cost effective licensing you need for your private cloud. As System Center 2012 is being delivered as an integrated private cloud management solution, we will analyze the server management license transition programs for existing System Center users. Further, we will discuss specific Microsoft licensing programs such as the Enrollment for Core Infrastructure, and how licensing for private cloud solutions maximizes your private cloud value while simplifying purchasing.
Microsoft Virtual Academy What’s New in System Center 2012 This presentation provides an introduction to System Center 2012 and the Microsoft private cloud solution. You will see how System Center 2012 brings together data center management and the benefits of private cloud services in a single product. We will show how using this product will enable your business to respond better to challenges and opportunities by having a more agile and responsive IT resource. In addition, we will discuss Microsoft’s approach to the private cloud, and provide an overview of the key System Center 2012 components that are a part of this vision. Each of the components will be introduced and we will discuss how each will help you drive higher value from your existing IT assets.
Microsoft Virtual Academy Introduction to Systems Management & Service Delivery

Many companies struggle with managing a wide range of disparate, disjointed systems. It prevents them ever getting a holistic view of their IT and limits their options. In this MVA track, we introduce the concept of joined-up, or ‘integrated’, systems management and show how it can help address many of the issues IT professionals face today. In this introductory session we've co-created with analysts at Freeform Dynamics, you’ll learn:

  • Why today’s companies are spending too much time and money trying to manage their systems
  • How this is limiting their ability to adapt to changing circumstances
  • The three core approaches currently in use
  • Why it’s just as important to change attitudes as it is to change systems
  • What moving to a service-centric approach means and what it offers the business
  • How System Center 2012 can offer the critical systems management capabilities today’s companies need
Microsoft Virtual Academy System Center 2012: Orchestrator & Service Manager In this course, we will discuss how the System Center 2012 Orchestrator and Service Manager components enable you to deploy, automate, update, and manage service offerings within your private cloud. Microsoft’s approach to self-service delivery will be discussed, and how System Center responds to end-user service requests. We will cover methods to challenging operational issues, and how using Orchestrator and Service Manager can allow the IT Pro to automate, standardize and offer self-service IT processes in the private cloud.
Microsoft Virtual Academy System Center Advisor This module will help you discover the benefits of this useful new software assurance benefit from Microsoft. We will explain the benefits of Advisor and how it can be used to optimize your installations of Windows Server, and Server Workloads such as Microsoft SQL Server, Microsoft Exchange, and Microsoft SharePoint. You will also understand Advisor’s high-level architecture for optimizing data security, privacy, and control, all delivered through a user-friendly cloud service. Additionally, we will show how to use the Advisor service to proactively avoid problems, resolve issues faster, and reduce downtime. We will show you how to make the most use out of this tool to help you better manage your data center and cloud infrastructure.