Tag Archive for Cloud

3 Ready to Go Scenarios for CorasWorks in the Cloud

In my previous post, I did an overview of the new CorasWorks-Fpweb.net service offerings for the Cloud.  In this article, I’ll take a look at three core scenarios for the Cloud offering that are ready to go.

Community Extranet in the Cloud (Extension of Intranet)

This is an obvious scenario.  Most existing SharePoint customers use it in an Intranet scenario.  The challenge is how and where to put an Extranet.  Let’s imagine that you want an Extranet Community for your customers and partners around your products.  You want a nice community with news, access to resources, and community interaction for articles and comments.  And, you want it outside the firewall.

To get there, you would go with the AppServer for MOSS offering.  You would drop in the Spirit Community Services Suite and set it up – this is basically a customizable, web-ready community in the box.  You then customize the Community and enhance it as you need. The next step would be to integrate your Extranet with you Intranet on premise.  This is supported by CorasWorks in a bi-directional way. (See my blog on the X design about the webcast we did with Microsoft


Project-Oriented Environments in the Cloud

On premise, increasingly we are finding individual business units that want to bring up a project management environment.  Some typical uses are Global Product Teams, Proposal Management, IT Project Portfolio management, Idea Management.  They are typically adopting our Project Portfolio Management app for the solution.  But, they have to blend it into their on-premise SharePoint environment.  

The Cloud makes it much easier, technically and politically, to bring up a pure project-oriented environment.  Since, it lives in the cloud it is available anywhere, and thus, makes it natural to extend the environment to external parties that they want involved in the work.  To get there, you would go with AppServer for MOSS and implement the CorasWorks Project Portfolio Management v1.2 solution.  its flexibility allows you to have portfolios of projects sites some of which are for internal folks and some for external folks or both. 


Intranets/Departmental Workplace in the Cloud

This is where the larger shift comes.  Organizations are starting to look at moving their whole internal SharePoint environment to the Cloud, or, to start with SharePoint in the Cloud.   Two key reasons why organizations hesitate to do this are a) cloud offerings typically limit SharePoint server access (you loose control and you can’t install custom code), and b) they want to do integration with on-premise systems and/or other Cloud services.  

The CorasWorks offerings address both of these.  For this scenario, the AppFoundation for WSS offering is a comprehensive place to start.  You start with the CorasWorks Department Solution Set that gives you your centrally managed, integrated, departmental work environment (Intranet/Workplace) out of the box.  You add your departments, then, you drop in the business apps you want. leveraging the apps from the App Store.  Then, you start to connect the work between the departments and across the environment.  If you want the enterprise app and cloud services integration, then, you go with AppServer on MOSS and extend the environment to integrate with these systems/services. 


Bringing It All Together

While these are three distinct scenarios, the key is that you can blend them all together to create an integrated work environment in the Cloud.  You can have the full environment in the Cloud or integration between your Cloud environment and your on-premise environment.  For most of our existing customers, we believe that the first step will be to look at the Cloud for extensions of their internal environment.  For new customers, this offering starts to make the Cloud an appealing alternative to on premise implementations.  No matter which way you go, at the center is the CorasWorks Community and the App Store.  With our consistent app platform, we are supporting both options with the same products, services, support, and applications. 



CorasWorks Apps in the Cloud on SharePoint

It is time for some apps in the Cloud…  Through a partnership with Fpweb.net, the CorasWorks app platform on SharePoint is now available as a service in the Cloud. It is a powerful offering bringing all of the pieces together.  In this article, I’ll give you a quick overview of the new service offerings.

First, our partner.  Fpweb.net is a leading provider of SharePoint hosting.  They’ve been at it since the beginning.  They provide offerings for WSS and MOSS on a virtualized infrastructure. The way they do it, our customers will have RDP access and can install custom code and apps.  This means that you can control your SharePoint “virtual” server and what runs in it.  Yes, we are all about being DLL-Free, with Ready-for-Work apps, but, every now and then you do need a bit of custom code or a third party app to flesh things out.  With these offerings you can have it your way.

We have brought two offerings to market – AppFoundation for WSS and AppServer for MOSS.  Let’s look at them.

AppFoundation for WSS

AppFoundation for WSS is powered by the CorasWorks Workplace Suite.  You get the full product running on WSS.  You can dial the service up to the level you need.  With the service you get our new Department Starter Set that provides you with a robust, integrated, centrally configured “Intranet/Workplace” framework.  It is set up to go from the get go.  From there, you can go to the App Store and download free or for fee Ready-for-Work apps and plug them in.  You can also customize the apps and environment and even build your own apps.  You are now able to build out a customized, integrated, centrally managed work environment in the cloud.  The cost is $495/month for the CorasWorks service layered on top of the WSS hosting service you choose.  There is no per user fee for CorasWorks or for the apps.  You pay for the fee-based App Store apps on a one time license basis.  

AppServer for MOSS

AppServer for MOSS takes it to the next level.  It includes the Workplace Suite and the CorasWorks Toolset – for the power builder to enhance, extend and integrate the environment.  With the service, in addition to the Department Starter Set, you also get the complete CorasWorks Project Portfolio Management solution (now in v1.2).  The key with the Toolset is that you can now integrate just about everything – across the SharePoint environment and across the cloud.  This means that you can integrate your Extranet in the Cloud with your Intranet, or pump data back and forth to enterprise apps or integrate with other services in the Cloud.  The cost is $795/month (flat) for the CorasWorks layer with the same ability to add in all of the apps from the App Store.

How it delivers Plug and Play Business Productivity

  • The whole stack is pre-integrated – you get the off-the-shelf apps from CW and our growing App Publisher ecosystem, that integrate with each other out-of-the box, powered by the CW app platform, running on the SharePoint collaborative infrastructure, on a world-class managed service
  • This means you can focus on the app layer where the value is for your business
  • You have access to our App Store to feed your app needs and CorasWorks and the online CorasWorks Community to support you
  • The apps are not siloed, they easily integrate with each other as part of one work environment
  • With CorasWorks, you have point and click wizards to customize the apps, connect them up, enhance things and build your own – without the need for custom binary code
  • No per user fees for CW or apps, so you can expand usage and integrate apps without additional cost
  • You have the freedom to manage the environment and install custom code or third party apps whenever you have the need

We are excited to bring this offering to market  We believe that it stacks up well against other app focused cloud offerings.  We hope to see you in the Cloud.


Follow-Through on Microsoft-CorasWorks Webcast: Extranets in the Cloud Integrated with Intranets Using CorasWorks on SharePoint

Last Thursday Microsoft and CorasWorks did a joint webcast entitled “X Design Pattern: Where Contributors and Consumers Cross Boundaries”.  It was part of the TechNet series on SharePoint for Internet Business.  This article provides an overview of the webcast and access to the recorded webcast, the presentation deck, and separate videos of the live demonstration.

Organizations in the SharePoint community have historically used SP for primarily Intranets.  Increasingly, they are looking to extend SharePoint to more robust web facing scenarios.  This webcast was about using CorasWorks on SharePoint for “business interaction” scenarios that are web facing and outside the firewall.  These are often the core business drivers for organizations to go to the web.  They go beyond one-way (“passive”) public facing web sites.  They cover scenarios that integrate your “external workforce” with your internal users.  Examples are extended business processes, application portals, extranets, and communities of purpose.  


This webcast was a kick off of our go to market to start driving packaged applications and standardized frameworks from CW and partners for Web facing scenarios.  These efforts are targeted at reducing the time, risk, and cost and increasing the flexibility and robustness of solutions that leverage SharePoint on the web.

The webcast provided the following:

A top down overview of Business Interaction scenarios and how they fit into a “web” strategy   

  • Presenting the core business value of these types of scenarios which is to leverage your external workforce in solutions where external and internal workers work together seamlessly
  • We introduced the X Design Pattern which is at the  core of these scenarios and how it supports Cloud-to- On-Premise deployments and the dual roles of contributors and consumers for each
  • We presented 3 case studies where organizations have used the X Design Pattern for an Application Portal, an Extranet (business network), and a CommunityX Design
  • We provided an overview of the CorasWorks Data Integration Toolset and how it supports the X Design and business interaction scenarios (today on SP2007 and into SP2010)
  • We did a live demonstration of a Community Extranet in the Cloud integrated with an on-premise Intranet – the Omega Product Community
  • We introduced a pre-packaged solution (to be released to the CorasWorks App Store and to CorasWorks in the Cloud in December), the Community Services Suite, by Spirit EDV-Beratung that we used in the live demonstration for the Community Extranet

Click here to view the recorded 58 minute webcast.  In addition, click here to download the presentation deck in PDF format.

Further, we have separately prepared a set of 3 videos that cover just the live demonstration where we show the Omega Community on the Extranet in the Cloud. They are: