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So far Chris Shalda has created 4 blog entries.

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2017-07-27T00:00:58+00:00 April 21st, 2016|blog, Skype for Business|

At the heart of great teams is great communication

Productivity today is centered on conversations – sometimes a quick instant message or call, and sometimes a meeting planned in advance including voice, video and content sharing.  At Coretek, we believe that the heart of productivity is great teamwork, and that the heart of great teamwork is great communication.

Office 365 is a world-class productivity service that helps great teams to accomplish great achievements.  At the heart of Office 365 Communications is the Skype for Business service connecting your teams with the experience they love, in the Office applications they use every day.  With Skype for Business you can simplify your infrastructure with one platform for calling, conferencing, video, and sharing.

Achieve more with a fully integrated communication solution

Coretek offers a fully integrated communications solution based on Office 365, our services, and certified hardware to ensure the best experience for your end-users.  We help our customers along all the steps of the productivity improvement journey, starting with deployment planning and roll-out, to making sure your teams are up to speed with the new solution and comfortable enough with the new ways of communication.  By leveraging our company’s offering, your teams will be able to communicate like never before using Office 365 and Skype for Business.

How do you accomplish this?

Skype across Devices

Connect with your team anywhere using our mobile apps across Windows, iOS and AndroidTM, or bring remote participants into meeting spaces of all sizes with Skype for Business Room Systems.

Skype Across Devices

Complete Meeting Solution

Work like you are all in one room, even when you are not.  From collaborative team sessions to large broadcasts or dialing into a conference using your phone, Skype for Business is designed for all your meeting needs.

Complete Meeting Solution

Modern Voice with Cloud PBX

Make, receive, and transfer business calls in the office, at home, or on the road using phone, PC, and mobile.  Increase agility and consolidate management with voice services in Office 365.

Modern Voice with Cloud PBX

Security, Control and Compliance

Get end-to-end security, control and compliance that span from the user to the enterprise.  All powered by the on-demand scale and manageability of Office 365.

Security, Control and Compliance

Skype for Business voice

The bottom line is that Coretek’s integrated communications offering helps you take advantage of the following services and capabilities of Office 365 and Skype for Business:

  • Anywhere Access – ability to make and receive business calls in the office, at home, or on the road, using your business number on your smartphone, tablet, PC, or desk phone.
  • PSTN Conferencing – provides the flexibility to dial in to a meeting from a traditional phone, in addition to the existing ability to join a meeting with a single click on your PC or mobile device.
  • Skype Meeting Broadcast – makes it easier than ever to produce large virtual meetings for up to 10,000 meeting attendees, who can join from virtually any browser or device (see it in action). Now Skype for Business truly is a single platform for every type of meeting.
  • Cloud PBX – enables companies to eliminate separate PBX systems and transition to the cloud with Office 365 as the center of communications management.
  • PSTN Calling – ability to subscribe to Microsoft managed calling plans and phone numbers.
  • Skype Connectivity – Connect, communicate, and collaborate with colleagues, consumers, other businesses, and friends and family – anyone who uses Skype – with both voice and HD video.

Start a conversation with Coretek today and let us show you how you can bring truly valuable communication to your teams.

How to create nice-looking icons for Citrix published apps

2017-07-27T00:01:07+00:00 October 17th, 2012|Uncategorized|

Problem:

A customer of mine has a handful of web applications which are published with XenApp 6.5 and PNAgent, have shortcuts on the desktop, and are launched via a URL with Internet Explorer.  So, the default icon that the user sees on their desktop is the typical Internet Explorer blue e icon for every one of them.  The customer wanted to assign a distinctive and representative icon to each of the web based applications, but didn’t have all of the icons for them.

 

How I worked through it:

We first tried to assign some ICO files that we found to those applications; but while they looked good when we downloaded them, they looked horrible when presented to the user.  The colors were way off, which looked unacceptable to the customer:

 

 

So, I searched around on the web to find out why the custom icons looked so bad, but couldn’t find a lot of concrete information about it.  I found a Citrix support article (http://support.citrix.com/article/CTX126458) that was very brief, but did say one critical thing:  any icon files assigned to published applications that are larger or smaller than 32×32 pixels will downgrade to only an 8-bit color depth.  This is what I experienced in the above screenshot of the icon for the published application.  However, if the icon file is sized at exactly 32×32 pixels, it will retain up to the full 32-bit color depth.

Given this information, and messing around a bit with some icon files, I was able to prove out a process to ensure your custom icon files will show up as expected when assigned to published applications.

 

Process:

  1. Obtain a reference file that you want to turn into the new icon
    – This file can be in at least a ICO, PNG, GIF or JPEG format
    – It is preferable to have a file that already has a  transparent background (ICO, GIF or PNG) unless the background color is acceptable or the image is meant to take up the entire 32×32 pixel canvas

    Here is an example of the icon file that I tried originally, but looked bad on the published application because the size was 64×64 pixels (please see the “How I worked through it” section above for a screenshot of what it looked like in XenApp) 

  2. Open file in image editing software (like GIMP or Photoshop)
    Optional: If the image has a background that is not transparent and you want the final icon to have a transparent background  then proceed to cutout image that you want in the final icon file and paste it onto a new canvas with a transparent background
  3. Orient the image on the canvas as needed and re-size the canvas to 32×32 pixels
  4. Edit/touch-up as necessary
  5. Export to PNG or GIF (to keep transparency)
  6. Convert to ICO file
    – Browse to www.converticon.com
    – Browse for the new PNG or GIF file that was just created
    – Export to 32×32 pixel ICO file
  7. Upload file to a XenApp server in the farm that is hosting the published application
  8. Assign the icon to published application (XenApp 6.5 specific steps)
    – Open AppCenter
    – Open Application Properties of Published Application
    – Select Shortcut Presentation
    – Click “Change icon…”
    – Select “Choose an icon from a file on an IMA server”
    – Browse for and select the ICO file
    – Click OK, then OK

Here is what the re-sized icon then looked like after I assigned it to the published application:

 Happy iconing!

 

 

How To Force Windows 7 To Open Excel Spreadsheets in Separate Windows…

2017-07-27T00:01:08+00:00 November 30th, 2011|Uncategorized|

As IT consultants, we occasionally find ourselves with large spreadsheets that need to be reviewed with human eyes (rather than by filters or scripts) for inspection or comparison, etc.

The other day I was quite frustrated while comparing a large amount of data between two Excel spreadsheets.  I had to constantly switch between each spreadsheet, or set them up side by side in the same window.  Since I have two monitors (of course), I wanted to be able to take advantage of ALL my screen real estate for my spreadsheet needs.  I searched a bit, and found a cool tip on the WhiteSites Blog from author Paul White (thanks Paul!) for my conundrum; and since Paul’s original post is mostly for Office 2003 (with updates for 2007/2010), I thought I should share a “readers digest” version of only the 2007/2010 version of it here.

Again, please note that these instructions are specifically for Excel 2007/2010. 

WARNING: Always backup your registry before making any changes. Do not attempt to perform these tasks if you are not comfortable with editing the registry.  Seriously.  Don’t.

  • Open Regedit
  • Navigate to the following registry key:
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOTExcel.Sheet.12shellOpencommand
  • The “(default)” value will be something like this:
"C:Program Files (x86)Microsoft OfficeOffice14EXCEL.EXE" /e
  • Append a “%1” to the end of the “(default)” value, making it:
"C:Program Files (x86)Microsoft OfficeOffice14EXCEL.EXE" /e "%1"
  • Rename the “command” value, which is right below the “(Default)” value, to “command2” or something else.
  • Rename the “ddeexec” key to “ddeexec2” or something else.

After you have done this, your Registry should like similar to this:

 

 …and with that, your Excel spreadsheets should now open in separate windows. 

Enjoy!

 

SharePoint 2010 – How to move a subsite to a different location

2017-07-27T00:01:08+00:00 October 19th, 2011|Uncategorized|

I had been tasked to reorganize a Microsoft SharePoint 2010 site recently.  One of the things that I needed to do was to move a couple subsites to be under a different parent site within the same site collection.  I researched and was able to find some options, but they all entailed exporting and then importing — or backing up then restoring — the site via command line.

So, I decided to try the export/import method via the command line right on the SharePoint web front end server.  To export the site, these are the steps I tried:

  1. Fire up the command line
  2. CD ”Program FilesCommon FilesMicrosoft Sharedweb server extensions12BIN”
  3. Export the old URL using the following Command:

stsadm -o export -url http://intranet/website -filename c:testbackup.cmp

However, when I tried this under my domain and SharePoint administrator account, I got this error:

The Web application at http://intranet/website could not be found. Verify that you have typed the URL
correctly.  If the URL should be serving existing content, the system administrator may need to add a
new request URL mapping to the intended application.

After searching a bit on this, it seemed like the problem may have been a permissions issue.  So, I confirmed that the administrator account I used had SharePoint Farm Administrative rights, as well as site collection administrative rights.  I then tried to run this same command with a designated “SharePoint Administrator” account which also had SharePoint Farm Administrative rights and Site Collection Administrative rights, but then got an Access Denied error.

After spending some time adding and removing rights for both of those accounts to see if I could get this working, I table the issue and moved on to other tasks.  One of those tasks was to delete some old subsites from our SharePoint.  I ended up stumbling upon the Content and Structure link under Site Administration:

And to my surprise, I found that it is possible to select any site and copy or move it:

  1. Select the parent site of the subsite you want to move in the left navigation pane
  2. Check the box next to the subsite that you want to move in the right pane, click the Actions drop-down and click Move
  3. Then select the destination of the subsite selected in the next dialog box

This method ended up being a lot more straight forward and quicker than the command line option.

I’m glad I found it!