Browsing Posts published by Bob

Free May Lunchinar – (Almost) Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About IT Certifications!

Join us for our next free Lunchinar this coming May 19 from 11:30 am-1:00 pm as Bob Coppedge presents a topic near and dear to every IT professional’s heart, Certifications!

For this presentation Bob will focus on the stable of certifications offered by industry leader, Microsoft, but will also touch briefly on those offered by other manufacturers, as well as ones that are not manufacturer specific. Among the questions that are certain to be vigorously discussed and possibly even debated will be:

  • Do certifications increase your employability?
  • Do certifications bring higher compensation from employers?
  • What certifications and positions are most in demand?

Of course, tied in with the topic of Certifications will be a broad discussion of current technologies including, but not necessarily limited to:

  • Microsoft Exchange
  • Small Business Server
  • SQL Server
  • Windows Server
  • Visual Studio
  • Windows (7, Vista, XP)
  • Office
  • And more!

If you are in the IT field you won’t want to miss this informing overview on the state of IT Certifications in 2010. Enjoy free food, a great networking opportunity and great conversation. But you must register!

Call John at 234.380.1277 or send an email to and we will be more than happy to reserve a seat for you. Put this date on your calendar NOW!

Ok, so I’m not the brightest bulb on the tree. But I forgot to mention on our blog that the phones and Internet were brought back up within about 20 hours of the outage.

My bad, I know. But it was still a good thing to realize that the hosted services were 100% running and functional during the outage. Good thing!

Bob here. An unfortunate traffic accident outside our offices took out our main phone line (234.380.1277) and all our Internet connectivity late Monday afternoon. As of 6am, we’re still out. If you need to contact Simplex-IT, call my cell phone, 216.544.5595, or use email ( to contact us.

What? Your email still works?

Yup. We recently migrated our email to Microsoft’s BPOS (including Hosted Exchange). So email isn’t impacted at all. And we’re in the process of migrating our network monitoring to a hosted solution. Same Level Platform software (ok, new version), but hosted.

Bob here.  The Streetsboro Chamber of Commerce has their next Networking Luncheon at the Rusty Nail on April 14th.

The Topic?:  Introduction to  Information Technology Infrastructure  (aka “what are all those boxes, and why are those lights blinking?”)

Here’s the description:  Today, business owners find themselves solidly in the Information Age, like it or not. But with advanced technology all around us, who has the expertise to put the necessary boxes in the proper locations and plug all the wires into all the right places? Introducing Bob Coppedge from Simplex-IT to the rescue! In this informative session, Bob will explain, in the simplest of terms, the basics of designing, building and maintaining a computer network for your business. He’ll offer tips, accepted business ‘best practices’ and offer suggestions on where to get additional help. He’ll even answer questions! This is one presentation you won’t want to miss.

Networking begins at 11:30, with lunch served at 12:00pm.  Price for members is $15, for non-members is $20. Sponsored by Simplex-IT.

Location: The Rusty Nail Banquet Hall, 7291 S.R. 43 (in Kent, OH 44240)

**Please call (330.626.4769) or email ( the Chamber by April 9th to RSVP

(But you’d better hurry… )

Bob here. If you’ve been in IT for any time, you know that when Microsoft puts out a new product update, they usually back them up with “Launch Event,” big deal dog and pony shows that include a lot of value on the topic, several hundred people, and some great giveaways (like free software!).

Well, Microsoft is, it turns out having a “Launch Event” in Cleveland on June 3rd. But it’s pretty small, and certain to fill up immediately. It’s actually held at Microsoft’s Office in Independence, which means it’s going to be limited to probably 75 or so people tops.

It’s actually two ½ day sessions. One deals with developers, the other IT Pros (both focused on Office 2010, of course). And, also of course, the events are free.

Also, I’m pretty sure there will be no free software, unlike other launch events. So if you’re looking for the freebies, this might not be for you.

But click here if you want to learn more about Office 2010!

It hasn’t been publicly pushed out yet, so register sooner rather than later.

But if you’re truly interested in the product, register now!

Bob Coppedge, Simplex-IT’s President and chief technology guru, addressed an eager (and hungry!) group of IT professionals on Wednesday, March 17, St. Patrick’s Day, 2010. On the agenda was Microsoft’s Business Productivity Online Standard Suite, or BPOS.

Microsoft Business Productivity Online Standard Suite is a set of messaging and collaboration solutions hosted by Microsoft, consisting of Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, Office Live Meeting, and Office Communications Online. Bob discussed the pros and cons of utilizing such an approach, particularly for the small-to-medium organizations with which Simplex-IT frequently partners. Interest on the part of the attendees was high, largely due to the low cost of entry and ease of administration presented by these new online software services. Especially in these times, anything companies can do to keep recurring costs low and predictable is most welcome!

If you couldn’t make our meeting but would like to learn more about Microsoft’s BPOS, you can click here and go to the official site. Alternately, you could call us at 234.380.1277. Or drop us an email. We would love to tell you more!

This was Lunchinar #14 for Simplex-IT. As an opportunity to learn about new technology, network with others in the IT field and enjoy some good food, these events are gaining a quiet reputation among those who attend. If you would like to be informed of these and other news from our world, sign up for our eNewsletter, a link for which you will find on our Home page.

And now a word from our sponsor: Next month’s Lunchinar is going to be on Managed Services, a topic we at Simplex-IT are particularly well-qualified to discuss. Managed Services focuses on turning your IT strategy from reactive (“Run it till it breaks, then scramble and (hope) to fix it!”) to a more effective and efficient proactive approach (We monitor the network and its activity to ensure peak operating efficiency; we can view problems as they are evolving, prior to becoming problems, and take the appropriate steps to mitigate or eliminate them, all BEFORE the system breaks!). We hope to see you there!

Hello, all, John here. Welcome to my first BizBlog. I get to tell you about a virtual presentation that Simplex-IT and Microsoft are co-presenting on Hosted Exchange!

If you are interested in learning more about Microsoft Hosted services, with a focus on Hosted Exchange, join us as we dive deep into the capabilities of Microsoft’s set of offerings, focusing primaraily on Hosted Exchange. Topics covered will include costs, security, migration and integration with existing Active Directory domains.

When:  Tuesday, March 23, 2010 from 2:00 – 3:00 PM.

Here’s the good news – The event is free! And, this is a virtual meeting, so join us from your desktop. You don’t even have to travel!

Here’s what you need to do: Follow this link – , fill out the brief registration you will find there and you will receive all the detailied information on how to connect in a reply email. It’s that easy!

“See you” there!

Many of you have seen or heard Microsoft’s Matt Hester present at various Microsoft events. I’ve known Matt for several years, and regard him as a close personal friend (of somebody, I’m sure). His wealth of knowledge (some of it useful), his willingness to share it freely (2am phone calls), and his communication skills (ooooh, Power Point) all place him a cut above the rest. 

Ok, seriously…Matt’s excellent at what he does. And he’s reached two important milestones recently. He relocated to Ohio (Cincinnati area), and he co-authored an excellent book on Server 2008 R2 (click here for it). 

Matt, whose blog is a must see for the IT Pro (click here for it), is also responsible for helping out the local User Groups, which he’s been a long-time proponent of. 

Bottom line on all this is Matt is putting together a Microsoft “Windows Server IT Pro Community Tour,” which will reach Cleveland (ok, Beachwood) on Wednesday, March 24th. Click here for more information. 

This is a free event. There will be some food, refreshments and raffle prizes. 

See you there! (I wonder which Matt Hester we’ll get?) 

Bob here. Ya knew it was coming.

According to Arthur C. Clarke in his book “2010: The Year We Make Contact,” by now we should have bases on the moon, a ship heading to Jupiter to meet up with another one already there (having killed its crew).

Would you settle for Office 2010?

Didn’t think so. How ’bout we throw in SharePoint 2010, Project 2010 and Visio 2010?

Yeah, I figured that’d get you. Well, they’re all coming (along with, ultimately, SQL Server 2008 R2, of course), starting in May.

Here’s the idea:

  • April…these products hit the “Release to Manufacturing” stage
  • May (around the 12th) – the products are offered to the business world
  • June, Office 2010 hits the consumer world (retail and online)
  • TechNet Plus and MSDN…no specific date yet

Click here for more information.

Not sure what version, or when, or anything about Microsoft Products or Licensing? Give Simplex-IT a call at 234.380.1277, or email John Harrow at

Bob here. Yesterday, Microsoft made an announcement that took a lot of folks by surprise. They announced (click here for the announcement) the end of a relatively new product line, EBS (Essential Business Server). Now, what does this mean to you? If you never heard of the product…well…nothing.

EBS was an attempt by Microsoft to bridge the 75 user limit of Small Business Server, and the larger enterprise. A combination of Windows Server, Exchange, and various security tools. But its lack of embracing virtualization and insistence of relying on some particular tools (see Hilton Travis’ excellent blog entry on it here).

Call it what you will. There’s no question that Microsoft was close to deploying version 2 of EBS, and that the folks who saw it thought it was great. But I think Microsoft recognized that two particular trends, Hosted solutions (ie, Google Apps and Microsoft’s BPOS) and virtualization made solutions such as EBS…quaint.