The Men & Mice Blog

Staying the path: lessons from Microsoft Ignite 2019

Posted by Greg Fazekas on 11/14/19 8:55 AM

Ah, Microsoft Ignite. Good times have been had, but also important lessons were learned.

Anyone who attends trade shows like Ignite can tell you: the long hours and dizzying pace of conversations yield results. Not only in terms of sales leads, which are always welcome, but also in getting a pulse reading for the industry.

ignite2019-2

We’re doing the right thing…

Of course we believe we’re on the right track, otherwise we wouldn’t be on it. But it’s an incomparable feeling to be validated by both customers (who are very happy with using the Men&Mice Suite) and visitors (who were impressed by our demo).

The landscape of networks and IP infrastructure management is changing. It used to be that you had to keep up with the latest hardware and software trends. Buy the next server; upgrade to the next version. However, increasingly it seems today’s (and tomorrow’s) task is keeping up with change itself.

Men&Mice has been building its products around that task for decades. And people are recognizing and appreciating it more and more.

… but there’s room to improve

When change is your only constant, it goes without saying that work is never done. As much as we pride ourselves on our ability for predicting change instead of catching up with it, we’re always looking for feedback.

Every trade show we visit offers plenty of opportunities to learn what ails the people running networks. We listen to people asking for support for a particular hardware or software and see an incredible yearn for automation. And we're glad to be able to tell them 'yes.'

The Men&Mice Suite has been supporting a multitude of different platforms — including our competitors! — and we’re constantly working on adding more. And our fully featured REST and SOAP APIs always get people excited: “Are we really able to do all that with a single API layer?Yes!

Onward!

All in all: with a new release of the Men&Mice Suite just around the corner, Microsoft Ignite was a great opportunity for self-reflection.

We have an awesome product, positioned right, and a growing and loyal customer base. Improvements are implemented consistently, and based on the feedback we’re focusing on the right things.

We’ll attend one more event in 2019, the Gartner IT Infrastructure, Operations & Cloud Strategies Conference in London. Our CEO Magnús Björnsson will speak about network management in this hybrid and multicloud world, and how it changes the need for DevOps, automation, and changing the way we see networks.

After that? 2020. We feel good about what’s coming next year.

Topics: DDI, IPAM, DNS, DHCP, Microsoft Ignite

Men&Mice and Azure

Posted by Greg Fazekas on 11/5/19 8:54 AM

The Men&Mice Team at Microsoft Ignite 2019

We’ve talked about Microsoft and Azure many times. Men&Mice takes pride for its deep-running synergy with the Microsoft ecosystem. The Men&Mice Suite was the first IPAM solution to fully integrate with Active Directory (AD), and now it is the only Microsoft-preferred solution for DNS, DHCP, and IPAM (DDI, or IP infrastructure management) on the Azure Marketplace.

Our team is at Microsoft Ignite to meet customers, present and prospective, and talk about how to make Azure work better with Men&Mice.

Why Azure?

For those already deeply reliant on Microsoft software (but also for those who aren’t) Azure offers convenient workflows and an array of resources in its Marketplace. Its global infrastructure backed by Microsoft. More and more Fortune 100-500-1000 companies, education and research institutions, and governmental municipalities (to name just a few) are discovering the value Azure brings to the table.

Scaling and migrating your on-prem Microsoft-based corporate network to Azure is not only beneficial on many levels but also simple with the Men&Mice Suite.

Deploying Men&Mice on Azure

Making the move to a cloud platform such as Azure has a reputation for being complex, expensive, and cumbersome. Capitalizing on the cloud is a priority for enterprises challenged by infrastructure sprawl, segmented projects, and mergers & acquisitions, but implementation is often hindered.

Men&Mice can alleviate those issues and create a straightforward path to cloud migration.

As an overlay solution deployed non-destructively, the Men&Mice Suite doesn’t restructure existing network infrastructure but facilitates communication between platforms. By treating all network resources, regardless of location, as equals, the Men&Mice Suite opens opportunities for migration at whatever pace is comfortable for the business.

How to make the most of Azure with Men&Mice?

Azure provides resilience, scaling, and security, and Men&Mice brings options to resolve obstacles in the forms of migration costs, lack of compatibility between services, and loss of control.

The native Azure Marketplace integration and support for features like Active Directory across multicloud and on-prem resources mean customers can freely move between platforms as needed.

The Men & Mice Suite allows:

  • bulk migration and import into Azure DNS
  • workflow extensions,
  • audit trails and tracking changes,
  • granular, role-based access and delegation,
  • support for multiple subscriptions,
  • use of unified APIs to manage all network data, wherever its kept.

Moving to the cloud made easy

Cloud networking, whether single, hybrid, or multi-cloud, is undoubtedly a sensible business decision. Increased service levels, improved network security, and overall uptime of critical network resources serve as validation.

Men&Mice is devoted to helping customers simplify IP infrastructure management and embrace (multi)cloud networking. Visit us at Booth #807 at Microsoft Ignite, download the Men&Mice Suite from the Azure Marketplace, or reach out to us to learn how we can help you.

The Men&Mice team at Microsoft Ignite 2019

 

Topics: Microsoft Ignite, Azure DNS, azure, Microsoft Azure

Men&Mice @ MS Ignite 2019

Posted by Greg Fazekas on 10/29/19 2:00 PM

Why come and meet us at MS Ignite? Let’s list a few reasons.

We’re recognized Microsoft experts

MS Ignite with its particular bend of focus is like home away from home for us.

Not only have we been recognized for a prestigious award here in Iceland, but in 2019 we've also won the Microsoft Partner Award for Infrastructure Innovation.

Men&Mice turns 30 next year, and from the very beginning we’ve been embedded deeply in Microsoft’s ecosystem. We were the first to offer comprehensive support for Windows Server 2016 (including zone scope and DNS policies) and Azure DNS.

After decades of working with Microsoft, we intend continuing our exceptional compatibility with their software and services. Including “one-click install” on Azure.

Yes, you can try the Men&Mice Suite directly from the Azure Marketplace

It literally takes 5 minutes to set it up.

Evaluate it for free, and see how it can help you optimize and drastically cut down deployment and management time to minutes rather than hours.

Whether you deploy it before MS Ignite and come with questions, or would like to learn more before trying it out, we’ll be happy to answer your questions.

The Men&Mice Suite is valuable for Azure and Windows 2016 environments

The Men&Mice Suite's architecture is designed to intuitively integrate with whatever infrastructure you have or want to have. Whether a pure Microsoft infrastructure environment or utilizing multi-vendor, multi-platform networks.

Thanks to our efforts customers can take advantage of the Men&Mice Suite to gain:

  • Visibility over all DDI operations across on-prem and single, hybrid, and multicloud environments.
  • Audit trails across all changes to DNS, DHCP, and IPAM.
    Granular, role-based access to objects residing with MS servers, services, and cloud subscriptions.
  • Easy and automated migration of data from server to server, or between on-prem and cloud.
  • Reliable and widely compatible APIs to automate and manage all your DDI operations and data.
  • Monitoring of data integrity and usage, such as DHCP scope and subnet utilization.

You can BYOAD (Bring Your Own Active Directory)

Moving from on-prem to cloud or deploying a multi-cloud strategy is not always easy. Existing deep investments in services like AD can prove prohibitive.

The Men&Mice Suite was the first IPAM solution to fully integrate with MS AD, and it keeps boasting exceptional Active Directory synergy into the age of cloud.

  • Synchronization ensures real-time system integrity, allowing and propagating changes through both the Men&Mice Suite or Active Directory.
  • Role-based granular access (both for users and groups), tracking, and auditing fortifies security and boosts administrative efficiency. Users can be authenticated through Active Directory (AD) and use single sign-on (SSO) to access Men&Mice Suite.
  • Global overview and administration of Sites and Subnets directly through the Men&Mice Suite.

Our booth experts at MS Ignite will be happy to assist you in how to preserve your existing AD setup.

You can make it easy to migrate to Azure DNS from another provider

If you’re on AWS or some other cloud service, but visiting MS Ignite to explore Azure, we’re the right people to talk to.

The most appealing features in the Men&Mice Suite for enterprise organizations looking to transition to Azure and Azure DNS from another provider are:

  • Cloud-native integration.
  • Bulk migration or import of DNS zones into Azure DNS.
  • Workflow extensions to automatically tag zones during the migration phase for indicating migration status.
  • Tracking changes, delegating access, and seeing all zones across multiple subscriptions, and managing data through APIs after migration.

We’ll have cool stuff and would love to meet you!

We’ll be at Booth 807 where you can talk to us about DDI and industry insights, get a demo from our experts, and score some sweet Icelandic swag. (Quite literally: our chocolate is second to none.)

To make sure you don’t have to wait in line, click here to schedule a meeting ahead of time.

Topics: Microsoft Ignite, hybrid cloud, Azure DNS, azure, multi-cloud, windows 2016

Microsoft Ignite 2018 Takeaways: the four pillars of Network Management for DNS, DHCP, IPAM

Posted by Greg Fazekas on 10/3/18 5:30 AM

Microsoft's push for a global Azure cloud has not gone unnoticed. We have integrated with Azure and Azure DNS, which is why we exhibited at MS Ignite and why meeting our customers and talking to attendees was validating. Our solutions and development roadmap addresses their pain points in network management.

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As Yousef Khalidi on the Azure blog writes: "Customers continue to ask for better ways to connect to the cloud, better protection of their cloud workloads, optimal application performance delivery, and more comprehensive monitoring services.

That's a great summary of the world of network management today, and a telling prediction of where it's heading. These core issues affect enterprise businesses who have to:

  • Balance between the needs for efficiency, scalability, and security;
  • Manage the increasingly scarce resource of IP addresses that connect the explosive growth of digital devices;
  • Strategize network restructuring to address overlaps in private namespaces that result from segmented projects, mergers or acquisitions,

We work with our enterprise customers on solutions that address these requirements, as well as providing centralized visibility and control for all their networks. Four pillars of effective network management while integrating with cloud services

1. Connect

Attendees at Ignite came with questions about migration to cloud environments. Enterprise businesses have invested significantly into on-premise networking and IT over the last two decades. Those investments are still precious. Migrating to a cloud platform can indeed seem a daunting - and expensive! - task.

We offer a solution that bridges the visibility gap (and increases operational efficiencies) between on-prem and cloud. Customers looking to migrate select workloads onto the cloud can still manage and scale their network as if it was one.

2. Protect

Security has always been a top priority in network management. And it is even more so, when heterogeneous environments share workloads with external cloud services. Cloud platforms like Azure have natively built-in redundancies and security guarantees, and the Men & Mice Suite takes advantage of those cloud-native features to deliver a holistic view across network environments.

Our xDNS Redundancy™ streamlines the migration and management of large DNS zones to monitor and synchronize changes, for example.

The Men & Mice Suite’s exceptional synergy with Active Directory (AD) was also well received. Customers can keep their on-prem configurations and access control intact and secure, save their previous investments in AD, synchronize and modernize their network management operations at the same time. It also enables access controls at the group and individual levels for greater security.

3. Deliver

We met a lot of network administrators and architects at Ignite who understood the value of non-disruptive deployment, and who were seeking solutions that can be integrated into their workflow unobtrusively.

Our goal is to provide a layer of abstraction through which you can better understand your networks. The Men & Mice Suite's architecture is software-based and API-driven. Deployment poses no interruption to existing services, and the performance impact is nominal.

The Men & Mice Suite gathers data from existing sources, and can control them, without overhead and performance impediments.

4. Monitor

Visibility in DDI provides a significant edge to businesses looking to optimize their resource use. We’ve always put that visibility front and center.

With a single-pane-of-glass interface we've made network management simpler and more efficient. Customers can save time and money by viewing and managing network resources regardless of where they are or what platform they're using.

Both the Men & Mice Suite and its recently improved web-based management application share the same affinity for simplicity and visibility. From customizable filters to automated reporting and alerts, your network is constantly under supervision.

'Ignite' means ‘start’ - where do we go from here?

Attendees of Microsoft Ignite came from companies whose IT is largely or entirely based on Microsoft products. They’re naturally looking at Azure as a complementary service to their existing resources. (Or as a competitive alternative by itself.) Our long-standing integration with Microsoft’s networking products is carried over to extend to Azure’s cloud services as well.

The aptly named event has been a great experience for us. In addition to meeting those who use technology and those who make technology happen in the business space, we’ve gathered feedback that both reinforced and expanded our development focus.

We may have been in the DNS, DHCP, and IP Address Management business for decades, but as cloud services like Azure rise and network architects have to keep reinventing themselves, so do we.

Men & Mice Suite free trial

Topics: Microsoft Ignite, Redundant DNS, hybrid cloud, hybrid network, network security, Azure DNS, azure, windows 2016

Reason to use Men & Mice for IPAM and DNS with Windows 2016 and Azure

Posted by Greg Fazekas on 9/20/18 10:30 AM

Men & Mice + Microsoft Ignite

Men & Mice at #MSIgnite

It's no surprise, given our long-standing relationship and integration with Microsoft's solutions, as well as our mutual enterprise customers, that we'll be attending the Microsoft Ignite event again this year. 

Come to Booth 108, where we'll be answering questions and demoing the Men & Mice Suite. But if you want to learn more about Men & Mice and Microsoft, here's some information that can help you understand our compatibility and how that may be beneficial to your network infrastructure management and operations. 

Book appointment

Men & Mice and Microsoft

Robust and trusted: magic words in any enterprise IT environment.

Microsoft has been able to largely dominate this space because its products are robust and its reputation is trusted. Enterprise IT professionals understand the value accountability that their network infrastructure solutions brings to the table.

With the Men & Mice Suite for DNS, DHCP and IPAM (DDI), you can leverage your existing Microsoft investments without replacing hardware or adding additional appliances. Trusted for decades by the architects and managers overseeing some of the world’s largest network infrastructures, Men & Mice offers simplified integration, advanced control, and improved security.  

Why Men & Mice?

What makes the Men & Mice DDI Suite valuable? Using Men & Mice’s software solutions with your existing Microsoft environment has numerous important advantages through our architecture, Active Directory and Azure integration.

The more robust a network is, the more complex it becomes. Men & Mice, simply put, ‘takes the daunt’ out of network management, while still staying robust and providing the ever-expanding features and support our customers came to trust.

As you scale to meet your expanding networking needs, Men & Mice offers you flexibility, portability, and complete management - all while cutting operational expenses and strengthening overall network resilience.

Architecture

Any vendor-specific appliance, including Microsoft, works best in their own homogenous environment. But the everyday realities of life rarely afford businesses the luxury of such. Once a foreign element, from another vendor or from the same but in another location, is given entry to the network, the chances for strategic disconnect and vulnerabilities multiply.

The Men & Mice suite (now at version 9.1) is an overlay DDI solution. Its architecture is designed to intuitively integrate with a Microsoft infrastructure environment or multi-vendor, multi-platform networks.

The Men & Mice Suite takes care of coordinating between hardware, software, no matter where they are or where they’re from. It unifies resources under a single-pane-of-glass interface, and can be deployed non-destructively. A powerful API serves the users for automation, while redundancies and fine-tuned access control ensures security.

Core advantages of the Men & Mice Suite architecture include:


  • Single pane of glass visibility over all DDI operations on-prem and in the cloud.
  • Audit trails across all changes to DNS, DHCP, and IPAM.
  • Granular, role-based access to objects residing with MS servers, services, and cloud subscriptions.
  • Easy and automated migration of data from server to server, or between on-prem and cloud.
  • Reliable and widely compatible APIs to automate and manage all your DDI operations and data.
  • Monitoring of data integrity and usage, such as DHCP scope and subnet utilization.

Active Directory

The Active Directory synergy of the Men & Mice suite is at the core of our product, and has been since the earliest days. As the first IPAM solution to fully integrate with Microsoft Active Directory, we can list - among others - functionality essential to enterprise businesses powered by Microsoft software:

  • Synchronization ensures real-time system integrity, allowing and propagating changes through both the Men & Mice Suite or Active Directory.
  • Role-based granular access (both for users and groups), tracking, and auditing fortifies security and boosts administrative efficiency. Users can be authenticated through Active Directory (AD) and use single sign-on (SSO) to access Men & Mice Suite.
  • Global overview and administration of Sites and Subnets directly through the Men & Mice Suite.

Portability

With the 9.1 release of the Men & Mice Suite, we've introduced a web-based application. It is designed to (further) simplify the day-to-day management of your company's network,

Having everything at your disposal all the time can often result in complicated, slow processes for even the simplest tasks. We’ve cut down on the noise, deploying our wealth of experience working with and listening to enterprise IT professionals, to identify the most common tasks.

And then we made them lightning-fast and possible to do on any device, from anywhere in the world. (While still plugging into Active Directory, if required. Portability is no excuse for less security.)

Azure

Our customers are the customers of Microsoft as well: we support their needs and investments in IT.

Microsoft takes their cloud strategy seriously, and so do we. We've been working closely with various solutions teams at Microsoft to build compatibility into the Men & Mice Suite. For example, we were the first to offer comprehensive support for Windows Server 2016 (including zone scope and DNS policies) and Azure DNS.

Whether your company is migrating to Azure from another provider, or looking to scale its existing network, Men & Mice provides support through:

  • Cloud-native integration with Azure and Azure DNS.
  • Bulk migration or import of DNS zones into Azure DNS.
  • Tracking changes, delegating access, and seeing all zones across multiple subscriptions, and managing data through APIs after migration.

It's only natural that the same compatibility, ease-of-use, security, and portability that our customers got used to with regards to Microsoft’s existing software and Active Directory, exists for Azure DNS as well. 

Topics: Men & Mice Suite, Windows, microsoft active directory, Microsoft Ignite, Azure DNS, azure, windows 2016

Men & Mice at Microsoft Ignite 2018: hybrid compatibility with on-prem Windows Servers and Azure / multi-cloud portability

Posted by Greg Fazekas on 9/5/18 2:25 PM

Fresh from the great experiences at VMWorld in Las Vegas — including a Finalist nod in the Networking category for the Best of VMworld Awards, thank you very much — the Men & Mice team is heading to Orlando, FL at the end of September, to talk all things Windows, Azure, hybrid DNS and IP address management at Microsoft Ignite 2018.

(Best of) VMworld 2018

menmice_vmworld_bestof

Men & Mice was awarded as the Finalist in TechTarget’s ‘Best of VMworld 2018’ awards in the Networking category, and we couldn’t be more proud.

We brought the Men & Mice Suite to VMworld to showcase our no-nonsense, unified approach to simplifying enterprise DNS, DHCP and IP address management. Our commitment to developing software solutions that scale and adapt to changing network needs while keeping costs and complexity down (through automation, virtualization and full network visibility) were validated both in conversations we had at our booth and reflected in the award we received for Men & Mice Suite v9.1.

The Men & Mice Suite is an overlay management solution that can be dropped on to an organization’s existing on-prem and cloud infrastructure, maximizing investments to give full visibility, synchronization and added security across network environments. Its fast-implementation and non-disruptive deployment, as well as reliable REST APIs, cloud-native functionality, fine-grained access controls and web-based management application simplifies day-to-day operations while amplifying compatibility with best-in-class platforms and vendors for greater network flexibility and portability as an enterprise network evolves.

ignite2018

At Microsoft Ignite 2018 -- Hybrid & Multi-cloud Network Management

Microsoft Ignite is a prized opportunity not just for Microsoft, but for third-party developers, like Men & Mice, to connect with customers, partners (and each other) in order to advance Network technology further.

The Men & Mice Suite was born amidst the rolling green hills of Iceland but feels right at home flying in the Azure skies of Microsoft (and on the ground in Windows Servers-based on-prem).

Ignite will focus on cloud and networking (and cloud networking.) as dialog around cloud integration shifts from“if” to “how” and “how to make it better.” From datacenter modernization, and its fundamental transition to Managed Services, to cloud-native development for future-ready network infrastructure, Men & Mice will feel right at home. We are about simplified DNS, DHCP and IP address management, after all.

Azure DNS

Men & Mice has been working closely with the Azure DNS team for a long time, to implement full support for Azure DNS in the Men & Mice Suite, an augmentation of the suite’s existing functionality with Windows-based on-prem environments, unparalleled Active Directory integration and hybrid IPAM synchronization with Azure cloud instances.

Men & Mice customers have been able to enjoy the same high availability, performance, and convenience of Azure DNS while maintaining the low cost and full control of their DNS domains and IP address blocks via the tools provided by the Men & Mice Suite.

With the newest additions to the Men & Mice Suite  v9.1, including xDNS Redundancy, which includes cloud-native integration and support, full portability of DNS zones between on-prem, cloud and between cloud vendors, fully leveraging your resources has never been simpler and more efficient. With our web-based management application you can even take everyday network management on the go, while our APIs offer powerful automation (and more!).

Meet Us at Booth 108

Drop by our booth to see how the Men & Mice Suite can increase network flexibility, scalability and simplify your Windows and Azure-based network management — including hybrid networks with on-prem Windows servers, IPAM in Azure and DNS on Azure DNS — without burdening administrators and end users with the complexities.

Come meet us in Orlando to see for yourself.

DNS, DHCP and IPAM Demo

Topics: Men & Mice Suite, Windows, Microsoft Ignite, hybrid cloud, Azure DNS, azure, multi-cloud

Men & Mice at Microsoft Ignite 2015

Posted by Men & Mice on 5/5/15 5:46 AM

Men & Mice is at Microsoft Ignite 2015 and can be found at booth #371, where our intrepid team of black-clad gentlemen is busy giving away free trips to Iceland.

Men and Mice booth at Microsoft Ignite 2015

Topics: Men & Mice, Microsoft Ignite

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The Men & Mice blog publishes educational, informational, as well as product-related material for everyone and anyone interested in IP Address Management, DNS, DHCP, IPv6, DNSSEC and more.

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