Syncplicity by EMC – an Enterprise alternative to DropBox?

Today I went to a luncheon hosted by EMC to understand one of their latest offerings called Syncplicity. The invite was very enticing. I am sure many are familiar with DropBox and some IT administrators may even be aware of its use within a corporate/enterprise environment and so, to hear about a potential solution that offers the functionality of DropBox but also includes the security and manageability of a corporate or enterprise solution then this was something I did not want to miss!

A brief rundown of what I learnt today about Syncplicity:

  • Syncplicity is an file sharing/storage solution that allows users to share, collaborate and access data across many platforms, such as PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, Android, etc.
  • It is designed as a cloud-based offering where the cloud can be turned up or turned down to suit your requirements
  • It has 3 layers:
    • Client Layer which is a robust number of clients available for almost any device you can think of
    • Orchestration layer which admittedly sits in EMC’s cloud. This layer would typically store authentication (unless using LDAP/AD), encryption and file Meta Data.
    • Storage/Compute Layer. This can be in the cloud or in your Corporate network (most likely your EMC Storage Solution such as ISILON or ATMOS but not restricted to EMC products)
  • It has a great user experience from what was discussed:
    • A user can right click any folder on their computer and make it a Syncplicity folder. No need to move documents to a “DropBox” folder.
    • Once this is done, these files will become available to them on any device they choose
    • From their device they can “Favourite” a folder/file and make it available when offline. These files will sync automatically when there are any new updates.
    • Files can be easily shared to others, as only a link to the file is sent and not the whole file, it saves any attachment limits issues.
    • There is file versioning and conflict resolution management built in so that no work is ever lost.
    • Collaboratively, users internal and external to the corporate network can be granted access to file/folder.
  • From an Administrative and Business Case point of view:
    • Intellectual Property remains with the business, especially when staff leave who may have stored their documents in their own “DropBox” account
    • Policies can be put in place to allow/restrict the experience of file sharing and syncing
    • If a device is lost or stolen, a remote wipe can be performed on the device
    • See just what files and data is being shared within your organisation and even outside your organisation.

I can see a case for implementing such technology in many businesses and I would love to learn more and potentially implement such a solution!

For more information, or even a free trial head to their website…

Until next time!

Creating a Blog Post from MS Word

This is my first ever post on my new site Since the best time for me to write blog posts is going to be on the train to or from work, and since I find that I always have a very unreliable internet connection while travelling on the train to or from work, I thought I would try and find offline options for this WordPress blog. A quick search revealed that it is a built-in feature of MS Word 2007 and above! Awesome… my laptop has MS Word 2013 installed… too easy!

So I follow the steps found in the Microsoft article found here at the website. There are instructions for various other type of blogs such as Sharepoint, Community Server, WordPress etc. As I progress through the instructions it is so easy and I think this is perfect. I get up to the part to where I enter my blog URL and followed by my Username and Password.

I press OK and then get the following message:

Mmmm. When you think about it, the URL I have provided in the configuration is only an http:// URL so I shouldn’t be surprised.

The further I investigate this, I wonder if I can login to my free blog using SSL. By default, the login page does not bring up https:// or SSL protection.

So I try changing the http:// in the Address bar to https://. It works!

Ok, so let’s see if I can use SSL to publish from MS Word. I decide to use the same URL as what is in my Internet Explorer browser above. That is

And… it works too! Publishing blog posts from MS Word will now protect my password and other information transferred with SSL encryption.

Lesson: Try any way you can find to always use SSL to protect your password!

Until next time!