Microsoft Project Server Online & Free Trial
Microsoft Project Server can be deployed on-premise using your own infrastructure or you can select from a range of cloud based online options directly from Microsoft or from a specialist Partner.
What are the options?
With Microsoft Project Server 2013 the three hosting options are:
- On-Premise (Customer hosted Private Cloud):
If you already have suitable IT infrastructure in place or can provide it, you can choose to buy the licenses with software installed on servers that are owned by you. It’s the traditional model and whilst initial investment is high, over time this pays off.
- Project Online (Microsoft Cloud / Office 365 / Public Cloud):
You won’t own the licences but will pay a subscription on a per user, per month basis. It’s a flexible solution with reduced up-front costs, also known as SaaS (Software as a Service) and your PPM system will be hosted in the ‘public cloud’ by Microsoft. You’ll access your system via the internet and have the reassurance of Microsoft’s robust infrastructure. There are however some limitations so read on.
- Partner Hosted (Partner hosted Private Cloud):
This approach offers a range of flexible models that can combine the benefits of On-Premise and Project Online. Read on to discover the benefits.
Making the right choice
The choice of which online option is best for your organisation depends on the size of your team and level of project management maturity.
Whichever route you choose you will get a flexible online solution for project portfolio management (PPM). Through the cloud you will gain full project management capabilities on the desktop as well as online from virtually anywhere on almost any device.
Many of our clients will go the Partner hosted Private Cloud route to complete pilots and PoC’s if not for the long term. The option always exists to migrate to on-premise with ease.
30% of software purchases via cloud by 2014 – Microsoft Quote.
Office 365 “Project Online” Vs. “On-Prem / Custom Cloud”
There are some fundamental differences between the Microsoft Project Online offering and the Partner hosted Private Cloud, they are outlined below.
|Solutions (IT) Architecture||Office 365||On-Prem / Custom Cloud|
|99.9% Uptime (Guarantee / Financially Backed)||✔||✔|
|Redundant Power, Drives & Network||✔||✔|
|Hot Spare Servers||✔||✔|
|Backup/Failover to Remote Data Centre’s||✔||✔|
|DMZ with anonymous access||✔||✔|
|Dedicated Servers (Virtual or Physical)||✔|
|Separate dev/test environments (e.g. to test CUs)||✔|
|Dedicated Active Directory Domain||✔|
|Automated User Provisioning by sync with Customer’s onsite Active Directory||✔|
|Architectural Options (Tier-1; Tier-2; or Tier-3;Single Server ; App/DB Server ; Web/App/DB Server)||✔|
|Custom backup frequency & retention||✔|
Application Integration Needs
|Application Integration||Office 365||Custom Cloud|
|Access from Project Pro on a user’s PC||✔||✔|
|Approved Apps (via Limited APIs)||✔||✔|
|Single Sign On||✔||✔|
|SharePoint Designer Support||✔||✔|
|Full Trust 3rd Party Applications||✔|
|Full Trust Microsoft codeplex solutions||✔|
|Custom Web Parts||✔|
|OS Admin Access||✔|
|DB Admin Access||✔|
|VPN to customer data center||✔|
Specific Security Requirements
|Security Requirements||Office 365||Custom Cloud|
|ISO 27001 Certified||✔||✔|
|Data Privacy Assurance (not used by hoster for marketing)||✔||✔|
|Answers to customer security questionnaires||✔|
|Customer-defined Security Audits||✔|
|Customer vulnerability assessments||✔|
|Customer-defined Password Policies||✔|
|Access from defined IP addresses only||✔|
|Private network links into datacenter||✔|
|ISO 27001 Certified||✔|
Advanced Reporting Capabilities
|Reporting Capabilities||Office 365||Custom Cloud|
|Custom Fields and Views||✔||✔|
|Excel Services (via OData*)||✔||✔|
|Excel Services (Direct to Database*)||✔||✔|
|SQL Reporting Services||✔|
|Performance Point Services||✔|
|Direct DB access to other reporting tools (3rd party) – off site and on site||✔|
* OLAP offers better speed performance when compared to OData.
|Business Flexibility||Office 365||Custom Cloud|
|Term – monthly or annual||✔||✔|
|Licenses – subscription or part of EA||✔||✔|
|Flexible upgrade paths||✔||✔|
|Customer Modifications to Standard Hosting Agreement||✔|
|Support for Customer’s Corporate Hosting Agreement||✔|
|Can choose when to upgrade||✔|
|Can migrate from onsite to Cloud*||✔|
|Can migrate from Cloud to onsite*||✔|
* Custom cloud can restore in database backups and provide database backups for moves to onsite. Within Standard cloud configurations must be re-entered.