Saturday, August 19, 2006

Application Portfolio Management (APM) Scenario

Application Portfolio Management (APM) Scenario: Sidney Higa, CIO of Wide World Importers, desperately needed to get more visibility into her application portfolio. More than 70 percent of the annual IT budget went to supporting existing applications across the organization, and Sidney needed a better understanding of how this expense contributed to the business. Sidney wanted to rationalize her portfolio, but she did not have a solid grasp of the number of applications deployed at Wide World Importers, and what business value they provided. She did know that different applications were used in silos across lines of business and geographies, and wanted to understand if there were redundant applications that could be consolidated or retired altogether.
As a first step, Sidney instructed her team to create an inventory of all the applications at Wide World Importers in the Portfolio Builder module of Office Project Portfolio Server 2007. The team agreed on which key metrics and standard descriptive attributes to capture in order to effectively evaluate the applications, including metrics for annual cost, architectural fit, process contribution, risk, and operational performance. The team then began to create the inventory.
One important metric, the process contribution assessment, included mapping each application to the standard library of organizational business processes. That information populated Office Project Portfolio Server 2007 report templates, enabling Sidney’s team to identify functional overlap between applications that support the same business processes, and to highlight opportunities for better application integration. After running the report, Sidney noticed some key processes were supported by multiple enterprise resource planning (ERP) applications, suggesting a functional overlap and a potential opportunity to rationalize these ERP applications.
Upon completing the application repository, Sidney now had reliable visibility into the status of her application portfolio, with the core data and a foundation to effectively rationalize the portfolio and make application life cycle decisions.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Retrieving RSS feeds through proxy

An excellent simple solution for retrieving RSS feeds in Sharepoint is the webpart created by George Tsiokos

For proxy servers & faster performance, I recommend downloading Wget to automatically retrieve RSS feeds from outside the company to a locally run web server. Wget can retrieve remote RSS feeds through proxies that require authentication. You can create a batch file that runs Wget against all external RSS feeds, and configure it to run as a scheduled task. Then, point msxsl to the local web server's cached copy to generate the DWP file. In this configuration, WSS-RSS will retrieve the RSS feed from your local web server for display in SharePoint. You should also lower SharePoint's cache time of WSS-RSS because it is retrieving the feed locally. Because the latency and bandwidth favor your local network, performance will be greatly improved.

Some uses for RSS on Sharepoint

A Sharepoint user reported:

"I've got SharePoint running to administer a development effort, and having an RSS feed of 'cases closed in the last 7 days' coming from our bug tracker appearing on the SharePoint front page is EXCELLENT. "

Bugs or changes or whatever.

Wireless Distribution System (WDS) / Repeater / Bridge

I'm using the Linksys WRT54G wireless router for a couple of years now. I'm still using a wired connection to my attic where a number of old PC's are located. Investing in those machines is not worthwhile so I was wondering if I could place a second WRT54G in the attic and connect the old PC's and hub to it. As I found out I need a concept WDS for bridging/repeating the connection.

Standard my WRT54G v2 has no configuration settings for this.

An option is to flash an Open Source firmware from OpenWRT.

This is an ASCII art for what WDS can be useful.

                / - - - Wireless Clients
INTERNET-----WRT54G_1- - - - - -WRT54G_2 - - - - - Wireless Clients
| | | | | | | |
4 clients 4 clients

----- Cable link
- - - Wlan link

With WDS you can connect wireless clients to all APs


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