Friday 25 May 2012

Microsoft Map: Getting Ready for Windows 8

I was notified a little while ago that the latest version of the Microsoft MAP tool-kit is now available for download.

The Microsoft MAP toolkit is very much like the Microsoft Application Compatibility Tool-kit (ACT) that is free and is designed to assist with the migration from one platform to another.

Referencing from the Microsoft website;
"The Microsoft Assessment and Planning (MAP) Toolkit is a FREE, agentless tool designed to simplify and streamline the IT infrastructure planning process across multiple scenarios through network-wide automated discovery and assessments."

With the following key features:
  • Inventories your infrastructure to assess and verify what is present in your existing environment to best determine hardware and software readiness for migration—for example, locating and reporting on instances of legacy operating systems such as the Microsoft Windows 2000 Server operating system.
  • Tracks software usage for software asset management purposes for products such Microsoft Exchange, SharePoint, Lync 2010 Standard Edition and Windows Server.
  • Assesses readiness and determines what needs to be done to successfully update all the hardware and software inventoried in your environment to the latest standards.
  • Helps identify under-utilized resources and the hardware specifications needed to successfully consolidate servers using Microsoft Hyper-V® technology.
  • Uses data gathered from your desktop environment to help size the server hardware needed for Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) and Session Virtualization deployments.
  • Helps identify resources for migration to Windows Azure™, Microsoft Private Cloud Fast Track, and the Microsoft Database Consolidation Appliance.
One of the key features about the Microsoft MAP toolkit, is that it is agent-less. MAP uses collectors to "go out and retrieve information from remote machines and environments". Some of the Collectors include;
  • WMI
  • SSH
  • PowerShell (requires 2.0+)
  • SQL (using SQL Server queries)
  • VMware (using VMware web service)
  • Active Directory (using Active Directory Service Interfaces)
  • Oracle (using Oracle SQL queries, requires Oracle client installed on MAP machine)
  • Remote Registry Service (only used for performance data collection)
Here is a quick snap-shot from Microsoft documentation on the available Collector technologies for this latest version of MAP;


There are a number of issues that you may encounter with MAP and the use of some of these Collector approaches including;
  • Firewall issues
  • Network Impact and Security
  • Remote Registry Access and Configuration 
  • Remote Sites and machines may not be available
  • Administrative Issues on the Remote Computer
  • SQL Server Security Configuration may prevent remote access
Once you have collected data from your environment, Microsoft MAP provides some reports relating migrating your environment to either Windows 7/8 or a virtualized environment. Some of these reports include;
  • Windows 7 and 8 Readiness Assessment
  • Microsoft Office 2010 Assessment
  • Windows Server 2012 Readiness
  • Office 365 Readiness
  • Software Usage Tracking
I will have a little play with MAP over the coming few weeks and will report back on our thoughts. In the mean-time you may want to have a look at the comprehensive asset management offering from Quest - the ScriptLogic Asset Manager


You can download the latest (BETA) version of the MAP tool-kit here:

Read more about Microsoft MAP here:

More about Quest/ScriptLogic Asset Manager here 

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