ExchangeDefender – ExchangeDefender Blog

September 2, 2014

Development Log

Filed under: Compliance Archive,Development,ExchangeDefender,Software — vlad @ 2:05 pm

Over the past few months I’ve taken the time to update several different aspects of our product offerings. The updates and products we decided to implement were prioritized based on bugs & feature requests that had been submitted properly through our internal support portal.

First on the list was our Outlook 2010 & 2013 SMTP Security Add-in, which also applies to the desktop agent. We’ve added several new features, improved performance and fixed a few bugs. Listed below are the enhancements we’ve added based on user feedback.

  • Added the ability to view & manage alias accounts.
  • Added the ability to disable automatic refresh.
  • Added a direct link to the user’s web portal.
  • Fixed a link causing quick links to not work properly.
  • Added version numbers to the settings page.
  • Updated the “Dismiss All” label to “Review All”.
  • Window size & state are now persistent between restarts.
  • Added the ability to resize the window.
  • Added the ability to resize columns.
  • SPAM counts are now listed next to the addresses.
  • Right click menu has been added.
  • We’ve added the ability to trust an entire domain.
  • Updated Documentation
  • Updated Publisher Information

We’ve also went through an updated most of the online documentation since we’ve undergone such dramatic changes throughout the years. New images have replaced old instructional images, revised steps and procedures for various platforms and even structured the documents to allow for easy navigation. You can find all of the updated documentation here: http://www.exchangedefender.com/documentation.php

Several core internal programs have also been updated to allow our highly trained support staff to escalate and speed up response time for some of our more complex requests. One area of improvement has been geared towards Compliance Archive and simplifying the process to retrieve an export of a user’s mailbox.

We’re currently working on bringing several enhancements to LocalCloud. We’ve had several clients report issues with client stability. So we are working on a performance update, which will also allow for automatic updates in the future. We are also working on enhancing the Web Sharing file uploading service, by enhancing the upload controls and server-side timeouts.


August 14, 2014

What the VP of Development does at ExchangeDefender

Here at ExchangeDefender we have a wide range of products and service offerings. With close to seven years with ExchangeDefender, I’ve designed and written a majority of the software that is offered as a part of continuously growing platform. This includes several of our key systems such as: Encryption, Compliance Archive, Web Sharing, LocalCloud and even our service ordering & account provisioning! The only areas that I don’t touch directly are mobile applications, we have additional developers who designs and tackles any issues that may arise on our mobile platforms.

Throughout the course of the day I find myself working on various bugs and communicating with our team to ensure that bugs and new feature requests are considered and placed within our internal development pipeline. Recently I’ve been going through our old documentation and working on updating that with fresh information detailing step, by step how to use our products.

Keep in mind that it takes a while to develop and test fixes to assure they don’t introduce other problems. There are no quick fixes or features, everything we implement needs to work well across web, desktop and mobile devices and our support staff needs to be trained and alerted of these upcoming features.  So if you have a bug or feature request that is absolutely something that we must fix and/or implement, we would love to hear about it! However, due to my schedule and workload I’m typically a very hard person to reach. So first open a ticket in our portal, our highly trained technicians will review your ticket and possibly collect further information. After which, they will then escalate the ticket into a bug or feature request. Once in this section, it will be reviewed every Friday to see just how we can make our services even better!

Here at ExchangeDefender we want to help you fill your services portfolio with everything your client needs to operate their business successfully. We strive every day to be the absolute best for all of your service needs. So please (I cannot stress this enough) if you think we are falling short due to a software glitch or missing feature, let us know!


July 23, 2014

Mobile – XD Business Communicator

Filed under: ExchangeDefender,Software — Tags: — vlad @ 1:28 pm

XD Business Communicator is one of our latest additions to our mobile software suite. Extending the functionality and portability of our ExchangeDefender product line, this app keeps your connected!
 

Quarantine
You have the ability to manage your SPAM & SURESPAM quarantines. You can view each message in real time with a life preview pulled directly from our secure network. In the event you come across a message that has been caught by mistake, you can release the message for delivery. You also have the ability to whitelist (trust) a sender to ensure future mail delivery from that specified contact.


Encryption
Another useful feature packaged within the mobile application is the ability to generate an e-mail message ready for encryption. This feature will start a new message with [Encrypt] prepended to the subject line. This will ensure the message is sent through our encryption mail delivery channels. The only thing left for you to do is enter the recipient and message body and hit send.

LiveArchive

In the event of a catastrophic failure and your mail server is down or inaccessible, you have direct access to your live archive account. By clicking the button labeled Livearchive you will be signed directly into your business continuity account. This provides a quick and workable solution in the event of an emergency!

2FA

This feature is one of our newest additions. If you have 2FA enabled on your ExchangeDefender profile, this will allow you to generate a one-time use authentication code to access your account. Upon attempting to sign-in to your online profile, you will be prompted for the 2FA code which will be available on this mobile device. Those who required increased security, this is the feature that will help bring that comfort home!
 

About

We’re constantly providing updates to our applications. The about page display general information about the application and information about what’s changed between software revisions.


July 16, 2014

SMTP Security Outlook 2010, 2013 & Desktop Client – Major Update

Filed under: Development,ExchangeDefender,Software — Tags: , , — vlad @ 9:36 am

Today we’ve published an update to the Outlook 2010, 2013 and Desktop Client SMTP Security application. This update addresses several bugs, performance issues and even a few feature requests!

  • We’ve added the ability to view and manage alias accounts. (See Figure 1)
  • An issue where the submission of multiple spam messages at once has been fixed.
  • Messages submitted as SPAM are now sent to the “Junk” folder.
  • Fixed several performance issues relating to “Hanging” or “Freezing”.
  • We’ve fixed the issue that was causing the “Add-In” tab to be renamed.
  • We’ve added the ability to disable the automatic refresh cycle. (See Figure 2)
  • Fixed an issue that was causing compliance messages to not populate.
  • Fixed an issue that caused the quick links to not work correctly. (See Figure 3)

 
If you currently have the add-in installed, simply close and re-launch outlook. If you had our most recent version previously, the add-in should automatically update. However, if you notice that an automatic update did not occur, simply uninstall the old version and obtain the latest version.

 

Downloads

 
 

Figure 1 – Ability to view and manage alias accounts.
You alias accounts will populate in this list in the order of the main account, then followed by domain and users alphabetically.

Figure 2 – Ability to disable automatic refresh intervals.
You now have the option to disable the automatic synchronization.

Figure 3Fixed an issue that caused the quick links to not work correctly.
Clicking this link will sign you into your web management console automatically!


January 24, 2014

ExchangeDefender 2014 Strategy Webinar

Filed under: Consulting,ExchangeDefender,Hosted Services,Webcast — vlad @ 12:42 pm

It’s important for our partners to understand what we are doing, how and why. We put more priority than most other companies mostly because we are small and the only way we succeed is if our partners do as well. With the MSP and IT marketplace wondering which vendors are going to make it through the year all you have to ask yourself is if you will – because if you do so will we. Everything we are doing at ExchangeDefender (and Shockey Monkey) is about helping our partners grow faster. To hear about it in detail please download the webinar we recorded yesterday:

ExchangeDefender 2014 Strategy Webinar

http://www.ExchangeDefender.com/media/XD2014Strategy.wmv

Growth

Every partner I talk to is focused on growing their revenues. Unfortunately growth, as predicted years ago, is coming at a more expensive rate than it did years ago. Not only is there a smaller pool of customers to pick from but the talent is scarce as well – so you will spend more on marketing and more on staffing.

By taking care of migrations, customer service, billing and even marketing assistance ExchangeDefender can help partners acquire more business and deliver more solutions faster. While that sounds like middle management lingo the truth is that you can grow faster if you can deliver more because you aren’t doing all the work yourself.

This is why we are doing what we are doing – our partners look to us to take care of the time consuming, schedule inconvenient, error prone and delicate parts of managing email and cloud solutions. They look to ExchangeDefender to create accounts, move email, configure Outlook clients – all simple and trivial activities that are remarkably time consuming and take lucrative projects into barely breakeven business. If ExchangeDefender can do it for you for free, why would you want to do it yourself?

Limited Time Opportunity

SBS is dead. Microsoft has priced out the rest of it’s solution stack way out of the typical IT budget of a small or medium sized business and when you layer on the cost of management and the cost of IT talent you see why the change is so significant. Even sophisticated IT providers are looking at the onsite infrastructure as a pain point because talent to manage those devices and servers is so expensive and so difficult to replace, combined with the incessant marketing for the cloud it is a losing proposition on multiple levels.

Don’t misunderstand what we are saying – the “move to the cloud” is not something that will go on for years. Last massively deployed SBS version launched in 2008 and those servers are well out of warranty by now. Over the next 2-3 years most of those customers will make it to the cloud and past that point the “move” will no longer have a significant amount of clients to make it worth while holding 6 figure Exchange and SharePoint specialists on staff.

This is why we are doing what we are doing – providing migration and support assistance to help you get your clients to the cloud is our embrace of the marketing and the pressing need in the marketplace. At the time that everyone is demanding it. If you aren’t talking to your clients about the cloud someone else is and the time to move them is now – but should you hire people just for a short term project to get this done? We feel like we can help there as well.

Success Beyond Traditional IT

I am always asked by partners and IT folks what I would do if I were in their shoes right now. What would I focus on?

I, Vlad Mazek, would focus on building up a larger revenue stream. The more money you have coming in and the more profitable you become the more bets you can make. I don’t sit in your shoes and I don’t know which specific terrific opportunities you may have in your local region – but I know that the only way you can take advantage of them is if you have the funds to market yourself and the time (read: employees) to convert the opportunity into cash.

This is why we are doing what we are doing – our smartest and biggest partners realize that the bottom of the traditional IT is going to fall out from the profitability chain and will no longer drive value. However, if you hold on to your clients and help them with the mobile, cloud, devices and so on there is a way to sustain margins and move on up.

Tune in, join up

Download the webinar and hear us out – it’s remarkably easy to get into the cloud with ExchangeDefender and so many people are already marketing the solution to your customers that the sales and value proposition is already clear to them: They just need to know how you’re going to help them do it.

We are at the greatest point of SMB IT – you’ve never been able to build a more sophisticated IT environment for less – and many small businesses are jumping on the opportunity. This is your chance to be a part of it without having to do a lot of work, without having to hire a ton of people, without having to work weekends and most importantly: Without having to lose your clients to a third party or pricing power.

We believe that the opportunity in SMB IT has never been bigger than it is now: It should be evident by the fact that we are providing these services without any additional costs. We are literally putting our money where our mouth is: We want to reward our partners for years of loyalty and give you an advantage in the marketplace. Eventually we will start charging for the migration services as bigger and bigger projects show up but right now you have nothing to lose and lots of new business to gain. Call us and let’s get this started.

Sincerely,
Vlad Mazek
CEO, ExchangeDefender


January 21, 2014

ExchangeDefender Q1 Meeting

Filed under: ExchangeDefender,Shockey Monkey,Webcast — vlad @ 3:36 pm

talkaboutxdExchangeDefender is off to a fantastic start and we wanted you, our clients and partners, to benefit from the developments we have under way. We’re strongest and most profitable when we work together and the opportunities we are identifying now will not be open for a very long time so tune in and hear what we’re doing in 2014:

Thursday, January 23, 2014 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM EST

https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/164640976

ExchangeDefender and Shockey Monkey are taking on new challenges in 2014, the problems businesses face with cloud and mobile services are drastically different than they were in the traditional office client-server-LAN model. As a partner-only company we want you to be on the same page and understand how we can help you grow going forward.

Webinar will be recorded and available on Thursday in our recorded webinars section of the Social tab.

Brief Agenda

Our Q1 meeting will cover the business and technical developments on Q1 and Q2 agenda. Namely, we are doubling down on what works and cutting what doesn’t. Here is the webinar schedule:

Migration Sales Conversation – Role play of MSP and CIO conversation, how to effectively position the migration service in the language that a business owner can undertand. We’ll go over how to explain the process, describe the new service, inform them of the events that will take place during the process and how the problems will be addressed.

Shockey Monkey Update – Brief discussion on the Shockey Monkey strategy and implementation of new integrations with ExchangeDefender, iPhone, Android, internationalization (new languages), wider release of the Unicorn and direct partner model for Shockey Monkey sales to any small business that could use it.

ExchangeDefender Compliance Strategy – Update about the changes to ExchangeDefender Pro and our suite of compliance, failover, backup and file sharing/sync services. We will discuss the way ExchangeDefender creates a platform for secure and compliant communications.

This will be an event for both your techies and your business staff, the opportunity we have to help our partners to get into the cloud the right way and keep the clients protected and compliant with regulatory requirements is a lucrative one – and we are putting all our resources behind you.

See ya on the webinar!

-Vlad

Vlad Mazek, MCSE
CEO, ExchangeDefender


January 7, 2014

Announcing LiveArchive 4

Filed under: Announcements,ExchangeDefender — vlad @ 12:20 pm

After extensive beta testing and taking tons of feedback on the design and future of LiveArchive, we are proud to introduce you to our newest version of ExchangeDefender LiveArchive. Available today and with all your email already loaded into the new system. What’s new?

New LiveArchive goes beyond email business continuity – it not only caches your inbound and sent mail but also keeps your contacts, calendars and appointments. It’s available anytime you need it via a secure web site, it is easily accessible from your smartphone and it even use IMAP to get to it from your email software like Outlook or Thunderbird.

Just remember to bookmark https://livearchive.exchangedefender.com

This was an enormous undertaking as a result of everything we’ve learned through the year of running the massive failover service. We’ve retired Microsoft Exchange as it simply could not scale or effectively provide the kind of service the new IT demands. When LiveArchive was conceived most business users had a central server and workstations in close proximity to it, so the biggest demand was to at least be able to access email if anything went down.

In 2014 and beyond things are a lot more complex and everything is in the cloud that never goes down, right? Smile

Truth is not just that the cloud is far less reliable than advertised but that there is often no centralized point of backup or control of corporate data. Some information is in Exchange, some is on your phone or your iPad, some is on another cloud file sync service and third party subscription services take care of the rest.

Our design challenge with the new LiveArchive was clear: Look beyond email and create a central point of business continuity for all corporate communications. We have built a massively scalable and redundant platform that can pull and receive information from third party services.

This is what we have delivered with LiveArchive and this is the future of ExchangeDefender as a business – providing security and backup for the cloud.

What does it look like?

With Microsoft out of the picture the look and feel of Microsoft Outlook Web Access is replaced with a scalable UI that works great in any browser you may have – which is convenient when you consider the growing variety of mobile devices and tablet/laptop platforms. Just point your browser to LiveArchive and it will find your grid as you authenticate.

lam2

During the beta testing process we recommended that our partners configure dormant profiles on their clients mobile phones so that when the downtime does happen they are just a few clicks away from setting up a full communications platform. In fact, once you switch from your native email platform to LiveArchive the experience with the mobile device is exactly the same, it’s very hard to tell the difference.

lam1

Please don’t wait for your infrastructure to crash before you look at setting up LiveArchive, partners that don’t track passwords and configurations tend to reset clients ExchangeDefender password as a first impulse reaction to an outage and then deal with another stack of problems on top of the actual outage. But we got you anyhow – our iOS and Android apps will be on the market soon and they deliver the full experience of the LiveArchive right inside of the app.

ios1

Don’t worry, you won’t even have to remember the LiveArchive address once you install the app, it’s right there on the shortcut bar:

ios2

In summary, it’s cold outside and now is the time to check this out. Smile

Sincerely,
Vlad Mazek
CEO, ExchangeDefender
(877) 546-0316 x500
vlad@ExchangeDefender.com


December 12, 2013

We’ve Upgraded Exchange Essentials

Filed under: Announcements,ExchangeDefender,Promotions — vlad @ 10:29 am

Let’s face it, not all businesses need mission critical, data center redundant, year-long business continuity backing their operations. They just need an effective system to communicate and collaborate. Say hello to ExchangeDefender Exchange Essentials 2013. Here is the executive overview:

Microsoft Exchange 2013 Mailbox (10GB)

ExchangeDefender Essentials Security

5 days of business continuity (Emergency)

Private Branding + White Label

24/7 Support via portal, phone and chat

Just $7.99 $6.99 / month

This highly redundant offering is a perfect starter email solution for a company migrating from SBS or in-house server solution. True, it doesn’t have long term business continuity of LiveArchive, compliance, encryption, migration assistance or data center redundancy but if you need to manage your budget this is a great way to do it.

One more thing: For the next month we will be offering a discount of $1 that will be locked in for at least one year, so it’s yours for just $6.99 per user per month. Of course you can rebrand it and adjust the pricing to compensate you for provisioning and rollout.

But what if it goes down?

Exchange in the cloud is the same as Exchange in your office, there is no magical version and from time to time it will have issues. We have a redundant and clustered deployment so when we have to do maintenance or when there is an unexpected issue, we can shut down servers without interrupting service. But let’s say something significantly bad is going on and everything goes lights out – what now? Well, we have ExchangeDefender Emergency backing you up and giving you access to 5 days worth of email archive that you can search, view and reply/compose from. You continue to work until your Exchange mailbox is ready.

inboxmessageformsolosave

This in fact is the biggest and easiest upsell in our cloud portfolio: Once you show your users how easy it is to be able to send and receive email when there is an outage, just tell them you have another solution that also gives them access to all their contacts and appointments – along with a year worth of items available for them. Oh, and it works on your mobile device as well so you don’t have to be stuck in front of a PC with a web browser. For just $2 a month more you can have ultimate peace of mind knowing that you’ll never have to worry about your mail.

But Vlad says this is not for business? Is it?

As an expert (not meaning smart, meaning I’ve been through enough email outages to know better) I cannot in good conscience recommend a solution that I know has a potential to cause downtime. ExchangeDefender Essentials was built as a way to compromise on data center and business continuity systems in order to create a budget friendly service.

My personal opinion of the potential pitfalls is not the corporate representation of the product or everyone that works here: We support the product around the clock, we spare no expense when it comes to creating a high end product, we have built what we believe is the most effective and most powerful email solution on Exchange 2013. But if something has a potential to go down, when the rock solid one costs just $2 more, I just cannot hide my contempt for it, that’s all. Take it with a grain of salt as you do all opinions. This is just one of the differences with ExchangeDefender, we are here for our partners and our clients – not investors. We want to give you every benefit we can possibly come up with so you can win in the market and make your clients happy.

To sum it up

Enjoy. If you have any users on SBS this is a great opportunity to get them on a solid platform for $6.99 with the discount through the end of January 2014.

Sincerely,
Vlad Mazek, MCSE
CEO, ExchangeDefender
vlad@ownwebnow.com


December 9, 2013

ExchangeDefender Q4 Call Summary

Filed under: ExchangeDefender,Webcast — vlad @ 10:07 am

xd2014Last week we held our latest partner call for the year and announced a number of solutions that you have been asking for. We have two new products that our partners have been very successful with and we’re now opening them to our entire partner base. I encourage you to download and listen to the webinar because we go over quite a bit, as we will on the blog in the coming days:

ExchangeDefender Q4 Partner Briefing

http://www.ExchangeDefender.com/media/ExchangeDefenderQ4.wmv

11:13 Exchange Essentials 2013
16:54 Exchange for Business
24:52 Exchange Defender Android & iOS
30:10 2014 For Us
34:01 2014 For You: Threats
37:37 2014 For You: Opportunities

That said, here is a brief summary:

Exchange Essentials 2013 – We are launching an affordable Exchange 2013 offering to help you compete with inferior Exchange hosting solutions. There is no pretty way to put this – some people don’t think they need data center redundancy, full ExchangeDefender, SharePoint/Lync, compliance or business continuity. We have been offering Exchange 2010 Essentials for years and now we’re adding 2013 to that portfolio at $7.99/mbox: easy, redundant clustered infrastructure, ExchangeDefender Essentials and our 24/7 support.

Exchange for Business – The exact opposite of Exchange Essentials, this is the full suite with our best failover, business continuity, business tools like Compliance Archiving & Encryption. But there is more: this is a concierge deployed service – we will migrate your clients data and their configuration if you’d like but we’ll definitely take care of setting up all the services for you and confirm everything is setup as it should be. We find it that some of the larger accounts don’t quite cross their t’s and dot their i’s so we will make sure we have someone here to manage this rollout end to end and make sure it’s deployed right. Since it’s going to save us some support costs and time we’re knocking off $1/month off what it would cost you to put these products together separately. Keep in mind that competitive solutions for archiving start at $10 by themselves so charging less than $25-35/month for this $16.99 offering would be considered a pretty big Christmas present on your part.

ExchangeDefender Mobile for Android and iPhone – And now on to something free: ExchangeDefender is coming to mobile in a big way and our iPhone and Android apps will be on your devices in time for the holiday break (depending on the Apple store approval). We are bringing quarantine access, SPAM management and previews, LiveArchive and other stuff to the app to give your clients a better handle on email. We are looking for ideas and suggestions but we already have plans to integrate LocalCloud, Compliance Archiving search and more right in the app so all of your information is always at hand. There are no plans for Blackberry or Windows Phone versions at this time due to each platform making up less than 1% of our current mobile user base.

Brief note on availability: We will be open during the last week of the year but we will be working on a skeleton crew while everyone will be in training December 30th – January 3rd. During this time most of the sales staff will only be available for an hour or two on the phone and executives might only be available after hours. It is important for us to get 2014 started right so these days of training and planning will take precedence over regular operations.

Sincerely,
Vlad Mazek, MCSE
CEO, ExchangeDefender
vlad@ownwebnow.com


November 8, 2013

ExchangeDefender Client Software

Filed under: ExchangeDefender,Software — vlad @ 2:42 pm

We are proud to present the first release of the new Client Software infrastructure that is starting to include all of our ExchangeDefender solutions under one look and experience. As I’ve explained before, we are bringing the same ExchangeDefender web experience to your Desktop/Outlook as well as the mobile world of iOS and Android. Lot’s of new stuff so let’s get started.

Branding: The most demanded feature for the Outlook and Desktop addin. You don’t have to customize things either, all the product names, logos and colors will be pulled down from ExchangeDefender based on the user login.

s3

We are adding search as well as message previews to ExchangeDefender quarantines. This gives our clients true, live access to the SPAM quarantine and makes the system respond in realtime along with the ability to instantly print, whitelist or deliver the message.

s4

Previews are great for clients that need immediate access and don’t want to waste tons of time waiting for emails to be released and delivered to their Inbox – they can access them right away!

Speaking of the need for realtime alerts, some of our clients really liked old email reports because they would get that daily reminder of all their SPAM. We’ve introduced a new feature with the ExchangeDefeder Outlook addins (desktop has had it for years) that will pop up a reminder that there is new SPAM waiting for you every 30 or 60 minutes.

s2

LiveArchive & Compliance Archive

Just one more.. well, two more things. We are adding access to LiveArchive and ComplianceArchive so it’s never more than one click away.

LiveArchive will give you a one click access to the full web experience of a fully functional webmail client now with contacts, appointments and a year of your email.

Compliance Archiving is being embedded right into the product – you will be able to quickly locate, open and even filter down messages by subject, sender, recipient and date. This will allow people with very large mailboxes to quickly get to the messages that may have been received years ago with a quick search.

s1

One of the biggest improvements in the actual infrastructure of the Desktop and Outlook 2010 & 2013 addins is that the addin will automatically update itself whenever a new version is released. Unfortunately, you will have to uninstall the existing addin and install the new one from here, but this will be the last time!

As always, all our software is available for download here.

Hank Newman

VP, Development

Hank@ExchangeDefender.com


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