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Posted on by Tony Austwick in Student Experience, BYOD, Application Virtualization, Customers

Demonstrating the power of Parallels with Durham University

Durham University has achieved their goal to create a fully-mobile campus through AppsAnywhere's integration with Parallels RAS.

In combination with integration with Numecent's Cloudpaging, Durham can deliver 100% of Windows apps to both Windows and non-Windows devices, in both lab or BYOD contexts.

Durham University kindly offered to host a Software2 User Day as well as delivering a live demonstration of all of these awesome products working in unison to consistently deliver applications. Delivered by Michael Coxon, this is one of the slickest and most comprehensive demos we've seen to date. Watch the video below to see how Durham have succeeded in their goal of creating a fully-mobile campus and how seamless and reliable their software delivery is, even on hotel wifi!

Before we get to the video of Durham's incredible presentation, a few words of thanks & recognition from our Director of Client Services, Phil Morgan:

“The highlight of our December 2018 User Day was undoubtedly the presentation from Durham University, given by Michael Coxon and Jim Macura.

Michael took us on guided tour of AppsAnywhere, mixing great humour, a large serving of nostalgia and cutting edge tech. Any app, really means ANY app! Covering several delivery methods, including Cloudpaging and Parallels RAS, and delivering to every platform (short of a BBC Micro!), this is quite simply the most complete realization of the AppsAnywhere vision that we’ve ever seen. Huge kudos to the team at Durham for their truly sector-leading service delivery, and to Michael for an incredible presentation. Enjoy!”

Profile image of Phil Morgan, Software2
Phil Morgan, Director of Client Services, Software2
Profile image of Michael Coxon, Durham University
Michael Coxon, Technical Lead, Durham University

Transcript

If any of you came along to Lancaster last year, you'll have heard me witter on a bit about what this project was all about. And at the time, we didn't have it fully installed and ready to demonstrate, but that's changed now, we have. Michael's going to demonstrate the use of Parallels integrated with AppsAnywhere.

But just to give you a bit of background about where we came from on that, just to summarize what I said last year in about half an hour in two minutes. We had a project idea, come up as part of our major program of improvements we were making to IT across the University. And this particular project, the access project, was all about improving access to systems, and particularly to applications. I had a one line program brief that said, "Provide remote access to applications that would otherwise be installed on a user's PC," and that was it.

So we spent a long time looking at the market, and looking to see how we could do this. We took a kind of phased approach, where we went with, as it was, Application Jukebox at the time, to provide a repository for applications. And then we looked at what we could do to provide remote access to those applications. We examined a number of technologies. We made a value judgement based on the capabilities of various supplies at the time. The combination of Parallels in Software2 when out on that.

So, we designed the vision of what we wanted to do, and what we wanted to do was to provide access to applications to what might be relatively unsophisticated users, students, to you and me, such that they didn't have to decide how to access those applications. They go to one place only, and that one place would be consistent, and no matter where they were, or what device they were using, or who they were, the system would enable them to access those applications to which they were entitled in that context.

And that's where this integration with Parallels, and Cloudpaging, and AppsAnywhere came about, and that what Michael's hopefully going to demonstrate to you today, if you've all turned your Wi-Fi off. So without further ado, I'll hand over to Michael, and I hope you all enjoy this. Thank you.

Cheers, Jim. Good morning everyone. As I say, my name's Michael Coxon, Technical Lead for Windows Desktops at Durham University, and I'm going to be talking about AppsAnywhere, which we've branded in the University, and called it Flexible Remote Access, or FRA. I only have one slide to show you, so everything is really going to be a live demo, but I'll get to that bit later.

What I would like to do is just go a little bit over sort of like the history of our Windows desktops at Durham University. So I started 20 years ago, and when I started here it was Windows 3.1. I was involved in the migration of that desktop to NT4. And for 17 years, that desktop kind of lived on, but it did migrate to various different operating systems during that time. Windows 2000, Windows XP, finally to Windows 7. The system did change somewhat, but in essence it was kind of the same system that I did originally.

The way we delivered applications to those desktops, we used various different methods. We used Win Install. Anyone use Win Install in the room back in the day? Great product of its time, used good policies, startup scripts. And in the latter years we used SCCM. We also used Win Batch quite heavily as a scripting language. We had various different logon scripts.

Over that 17 year time, a staff desktop was created. Because originally that was a teaching desktop. I should've explained that, originally it was a teaching desktop. Then a staff desktop came along, which was called MDS, Managed Desktop Service. And other variants were created, such as kiosks, laptops, roaming laptops, lab builds, and other different variants. We have different logon scripts doing different things, and people had to maintain those scripts separately.

So three years ago, as Jim mentioned, this vision came along, where we wanted to create a brand-new desktop. Throw everything out that we did before, sort of, create a new desktop, which was going to be user centric. The previous system was kind of really machine based, so we delivered software to a machine, not to a user. And also, we wanted to kind of align all those variants that we had, all those kiosks, all those laptops, all those lab builds. The staff and the student system, we wanted to bring it closer together.

So this was the vision, and Jim at the time seemed to have some crazy ideas, and I couldn't get me head around it. But here we are. So what we decided at the time was we were going to develop it, Windows 10. Windows 10 was a brand-new operating system, it hadn't actually been released when we first started this. But all the development that we really did was on 1507, the original version. We decided to use AppSense. Anyone familiar with AppSense? Any AppSense users in the room? Yep.

So we used AppSense as a replacement for the logon scripts. So we'd have one script to rule them all. We're also going to use AppSense for the profiles, and we were going to use Application Jukebox, which it was at the time, to deliver the software. In a little bit of SCCM, so SCCM was still going to live on.

So by 2015, after the development stage, we started rolling out to the teaching labs, which was on the next iteration of Windows 10, which was 1511. Then by summer 2016, we did a big push. We were going to do all the teaching, which was about 3000 desktops, and over 400 applications we packaged in Cloudpaging.

It was quite an impressive task to get all those applications done, but I will be honest, we did have some pain points. I'm not going to gloss over. All those pain points were down to Durham University, no fault of Cloudpage or anything like that. But just to explain some of those pain points that we had, one of the main factors was the hardware. The hardware that we had at the time just really wasn't suitable for Windows 10. Some of you have probably experienced this, spinning discs versus SSDs. Nightmare to log on, nightmare to sort of Cloudpage the applications down onto those spinning discs. Wasn't really a great experience. You know, we were talking about five minute log on times, maybe longer.

Another fault of our own, we had an internal firewall that wasn't great. They kept on falling down. So people were saying, "Oh, this Cloudpaging's not working." Cloudpaging was solid, it's just our internal firewall was just blocking access to Cloudpaging.

We also decided at the time to deliver the applications via shortcuts. We didn't use the app hub at that particular point in time, we decided to use shortcuts. Wasn't a great experience. We, at the time, just wanted to make it seamless to the user. Launching applications from an explorer didn't seem right at the time, oh yeah, we tried to sort of populate the start menu with shortcuts. That was painful. And of course, because we did 400 applications, we missed applications off by the start term, and some of those applications weren't fully tested, so that introduced some sort of pain points as well.

But by the end of the year, we'd migrated to Anniversary Edition, really improved the user experience, it improved log on somewhat. We did a big push on pushing out SSDs. Jim dug deep in his pocket and bought a lot of SSDs. We rolled them in, really improved the log on performance. Phil came up at one point and explained to me, "No, don't do shortcuts, do this thing called the app hub." Okay then, we'll give that a go. And Cloudpaging was kind of introduced around that time as well, which sort of like improved some of the issues we may have had around sort of like Application Jukebox.

And then 2017, last year, we upgraded to 1703. Again, improved the experience. And then we introduced AppsAnywhere. AppsAnywhere was a massive improvement on the original hub, and it's kind of where we are sort of at now. Staff migration started as well, so we now have 600 apps provisioned through Cloudpaging. It's still ongoing. So we've currently done 3000 staff machines, but we still have a Windows 7 presence in the University. So we're not fully Windows 10 yet, but as I explained, hopefully through me demo, Windows 7 isn't a problem that we still got that floating around. We obviously still want to get rid of it by the beginning of 2020,

This year, Our main focus was FRA, using Parallels RAS, which basically was this idea of delivering our Windows apps to everything. So over those sort of like two to three years, we've done a lot of effort in packaging all these Cloudpaging apps, which was great for delivering to our managed desktops. But what we really wanted to do was we wanted to start managing the other devices out there, in the BYOD

But I think it's a bit more than that. So what I'm going to do now is I'm going to dive in, and I'm going to do a live demo. I am putting me neck on the line a bit here, so I'm going to be using the Wi-Fi. So if you can, kill your torrents off, and whatever you've got going, that would be great. Yes, no VPNs or anything, I am going to just be totally live on the Radisson Wi-Fi here.

Just going to have to take my word for it, all of this actually works on Durham University internet. It does, it works on our systems. So, this is totally remote. I do expect probably there's going to be maybe the odd error popping up, so please be kind with me, yeah? Okay, without further ado, let's get into this live demo. I'm just trying to judge how bad an audience you were. That's just a fake, that's just a PowerPoint slide.

Okay, right, live demos, what we got? I mean obviously, everyone in the room here, you're all using AppsAnywhere, so I'm kind of going to start showing you stuff that, yeah, you already know this and stuff. But I've got to start somewhere. So many people I've met yesterday, took them on a tour around Durham University, and as you know, as I should explain, is all of our machines when you log on to them, they automatically sign you into the hub. It pops up on the screen straightaway. We should look familiar to yourselves, obviously a bit of university branding here. This is validating off-site.

One thing you might notice a little bit unusual is I have got an orange banner going across the top. It's not an error message, but I'll explain that in a bit. It should be popping up now. That's just still thinking about it. There we go. Okay, so validated on the hub.

So all of our student machines automatically launch to this when you log on. This is a managed desktop that I'm currently on. I've got some VMs here, I've got some Macs and stuff to show you different things as well. I've given myself access to certain applications that I shouldn't have externally, obviously, for this demo.

Right, okay, some basics on hub. So as I say, all of our machines launch the hub automatically when you login. Some of the staff people don't like that, so what we've done is we have put a little application on here which allows you to toggle the pub. It kind of just sets a registry key, and the logon script is at registry key set or not. If not, then don't launch the hub. But by default, we do force the users to do the hub.

Myself, everything I'm going to be showing you here today will be through Cloudpaging. I'm going to go into the VMs and stuff, and X2Go it's all Cloudpaged. What we're trying to do is we're trying to basically encourage all of our users that one stop shop for everything is what we call the app hub, AppsAnywhere.

So as you can see on here, I'm off site. I just go to me favorites, because I've got a lot in there. And you know, nothing special here. Audacity, I'm just going to launch that. I'm going to stick to quite simple applications here. So I'm launching Audacity there. It's Cloudpaged, it's come through, it's running on the machine. No great shakes there, we're all familiar with that.

I'll just show you the app hub Cloudpaging there. As you can see if you have a look there, I don't have Notepad++ currently on this machine. So I'll scroll through here, Notepad++, I shall launch that. Yeah, off-site, streamed it to the machine over the Internet. There we go, got Notepad ++. First time I've used it, it's asking me, there's an update there. Might need to repackage that. And there we go, so this gives you an idea. So we've got total access to all the applications that I'm entitled to, off-site.

Okay, so what else have we got on the hub? So we got the Cloudpaging apps, we also have web shortcuts, so like yourselves, you left certain information websites. So here's a particular website here, purchasing print credits. Click on that, simple shortcut, taking us over to a webpage. Nothing fancy on that either. I noticed that there's a post over there, it says, migrate 100 percent of your applications to AppsAnywhere. We're almost there. I would honestly say we have got about 95 percent of our applications Cloudpaged.

There's a handful of exceptions, Microsoft Office being one of them. Cloudpaging Player, Sophos anything that's kind of core or native to the machine. But really, it's only just a handful of applications we actually have negative, what I call native on the machine.

So again, on the hub, got an icon there for Microsoft Word. Nothing too exciting, you can see it's going to launch it locally via the machine. Again, a one-stop shop. If you want to launch Word, you come to the hub and you can launch it from there. It is in the start menu as well, users can obviously create their own shortcuts. And hopefully Word has opened in the background there. And there's Microsoft Word, running native on your machine.

So you're all probably sitting there, "Yeah, we all do that. That's fine, there's nothing special about that." True, that's all standard stuff. So, one thing about this version of word here. So I'm off-site, I'm running Word on this laptop. I don't have access to me network drives at Durham University. So if I open all my network drives, it'll be crossed out. This is running the latest version of Windows, it's that dark theme. But as you can see there, I don't have access to my Z drive for example.

So, this is where the magic starts happening a little bit. So any user's off-site, and they want to access their network drive, and they want to do some Word documents. So what you'll notice here is I've got multiple options to launch Word, and I can launch Word remotely. So, this is where Parallels is kicking in. So Word has launched on the machine, and in all intents and purposes it looks pretty much the same. You can probably see there is a different list of recent documents here. And if I go file open, and browse this machine now, give it a second to build up. So, I've got different drive mappings there now. So I've got S drives, and J drives. This is all internal.

So basically in essence what I've done here is I've kicked it off of remote browse session. As far as the user's concerned, they don't know that. They're just running word on the machine, seamless. Have to think Stephen for that idea. Yep, they came up with that. Mentioned it, knocked it up in five minutes.

So, it looks seamless, it is running seamlessly on the machine. The only way that kind of gives it away that it's Parallels is when you do a little jiggle like that you can see sort of a little bit of a ghost effect. That's the only indication that really it's a Parallels app. Now for our managed machines, generally, you're never going to run any Parallels applications. We're going to Cloudpage everything directly to a managed machine. But that is one instance where we might use Parallels on a managed machine.

Okay. Ah, yes. That orange banner at the top, does anyone else use 2FA within the hub? So I think it was something Durham University specifically asked for software to. Guys were totally on board, they introduced two factor authentication. So there's a particular app that we have called Work Tribe. It's a corporate business app. Security deemed it, like they wanted to access it on-site and off-site, but off-site it had to be 2FA, and we were struggling how we were going to do that.

So basically what you can see here now, for any of the normal apps, you see they just like launch. But for Work Tribe it's obviously detected. If you look at the bottom here you can see, as I'm United Kingdom, I'm off site. The hub's obviously done all its logic. It said now, okay, if you're off-site, we have to give some two factor authentication for that particular application. So again, one stop shop for that. If I was on site that wouldn't be 2FA, that would just launch it straightaway.

So this is a 64-bit, so Windows 10 64-bit. Like most universities out there, you've probably got some really old legacy, nasty old software. We're just the same, probably worse. So we've got 16-bit apps. Bit of a problem, trying to run 16-bit apps on Windows 10 64-bit. But we've got a way around that, got it published on the hub here. It's all Cloudpaged up, seamless to the user. So I'm going to launch this application here, good old Windows 3.1.

So, 16-bit application, Windows 3.1 wrapped up in DOS box, and that beautiful application therefrom Earth Sciences from who knows when has launched within Windows 3.1. 16-bit application. Normally, I couldn't do that. Again, seamless to the user. They just click on the icon and it runs. I actually love this application. Well not the application itself. If I just close down Earth Sciences and I go to Windows there, and then I go to games, and I've got all the old classics. I think it's probably one of the more popular ones, because we do strip Solitaire off Windows 10, but there it is there. Great stuff, yeah? There'll be a little bit of a retro theme going on through my presentation.

So I'll just quit out of that. Get out of that. Exit out of that. Okay, so that's the managed desktop. Windows 7. Windows 7 32-bit. It's a VM, run in Virtual Box. Virtual Box itself, I practice what I preach, Virtual Box itself is Oracle Virtual Box there. It is Cloudpaged, so it's running Cloudpaged on the machine. No need for installs for me, and I encourage all of my team to all go Cloudpaged.

So, it's a 32 bit version of Windows 7. This is a standalone machine. So what we tell our users standalone machines, launch IA, go to the app hub, log on with your account, and hey, presto, you're presented with the app hub as you would normally see on your standard machine. It may differ, there may be some applications we don't deliver to BYOD.

Now, no doubt, people in the room here, you are doing BYOD. But possibly, you might be Cloudpaging to the BYOD devices, is that what you're doing at all? Anyone doing that? Yeah. We decided we didn't want to do that. I mean, yeah, Cloudpaging is great, and everything's kind of isolated, but there is that small risk that you could affect the user's machine, so we didn't really want to do that. So although all these applications are now being presented to me this BYOD, the only difference is when I point to them, if you notice there, they're all going to be launched via Parallels.

So if I launch Audacity now on this, in essence a BYOD machine off-site, that's probably just coming from one of my other virtual machines, let's kill the session off within it. There's Parallels there, so Audacity, running pretty much seamlessly. Well it is, it's seamless. It's on the machine. The only way that the user can really tell that that's kind of running in a parallel session is if they do that jiggle again, and you get the black shadows running around there.

Let's just try something else. Okay, this is a 32 bit machine, so the reverse is a problem, how do we get 64-bit applications running on a 32-bit machine. Not a problem. ArcGIS 2.1, it's a 64-bit app. Here it is launching, there is the first error message, but I was expecting that one, We've run out of license on one of our extensions. ArcGIS Pro just launched on a 32-bit machine, remote to the University, seamless to the user. The user will have access to all internal network resources as well that we allow them to have access to. Pretty cool. Just going to live that down. And what else on a Windows 7 machine?

There's something else I'll just launch just for the sake of it. BBC Micro emulator there. Any fans of the BBC Micro from back in the day? One person? Just one? We got two, just two? Three? No advance on three. Oh, okay. All right, well anyway, there again we're running remotely, no problem at all. Maybe just to give you an idea of what this can actually do, if I just go run disk here, BM. Just click games there, and go to Elite, Should put the volume on, would've gotten the disk drive noise.

So there we are, we've got Elite running, on a BBC emulator, an external machine, Windows 7. Basically that's running in a remote session. Some of the younger people in the audience think, "Ah, well the graphics are rubbish." That's just the way it looked back in the eighties. Pretty cool, pretty cool.

I'll go to Windows 10. Windows 10, standalone device, no great shakes here. This is obviously what most of the users have if they're Windows orientated. Go to the app hub, 64-bit Windows 10, I log into the app hub. What can I surprise you with? I mentioned this yesterday on the tour. It's only something I just found out recently, a good secret that software were keeping from us, is to search for apps. I didn't realize, and everyone else in the room does, but if you just press the S key, it automatically takes you to the search bar. Assuming you're in the window, that is. Did everyone know that, or is it just me?

Did everyone know that? So what it is is I actually raised a call with them, Software2, because I felt like sometimes getting here was a little bit funny, because this menu kind of comes down and blocks your way. Yeah but you see, if you just press S it takes you straight to the search bar. Good tip. If I haven't got any BBC fans, maybe the rivals are in the room and the Commodore 64 people are in here.

And again, so what I've done there is I've just streamed another apps to this machine. So all these apps that have been displayed here, they're all running by Cloudpaging. So there Cloud ... So on the RAS service that we have, we have 12 RAS service, the Cloudpaging player is installed on them, and AppsAnywhere, So all of that pain and effort that we went to to package up those 600 applications now, just basically means with 600 applications not just for our managed machines, but basically for anybody. Anybody can use them. And that's the same going forward. It's just a tickbox in the app hub to make that available.

Right, so that's Windows covered. Let's move over to some non-Windows devices. So I've got a Mac down here. Just bear with me while I lock it, unlock it. Now I don't claim to be a Mac guru. I only really got one of these about six months ago to play on this particular project. Need to be logged in. What I'm going to do is I'm just going to team view over to that, I get the screen up, so just bear with me.

Okay, so this is me on the Mac. Really, no difference to what we really saw on the standalone Windows 7. This is a standalone Mac, we don't have a managed Mac system as of yet. 50 percent of our students are coming with these devices, and previously they really didn't have any access to our teaching software. They would have to go to our teaching machines. Not the case anymore. All they need to do is launch the app hub, surprise, surprise. Launching. Login to the hub on the Mac, just looks exactly the same as it does on the Windows machine. Point at any of these applications.

BBC micro emulator, is that going to work for me on the Mac? Yeah, great. Let's just run a disk. Do we have Mac fans in the room? One? We've got a few. There's more Mac fans than BBC micro fans. This is not good. And I'll call you like what I'm seeing here then. Mid eighties technology running on a modern Mac. I mean, I've never seen a Mac look more useful, I've got to be honest. Yes, sorry.

Well actually, no, I can make the Mac more useful. I can make it more useful. How about Windows 3.1 on a Mac. I mean, you get the idea. You can launch all of those applications seamlessly. To the users, all it is, it's just the app hub. The technologies hidden behind it is irrelevant to them. Anything else I want to show you on the Mac? Oh, yeah, well okay, you get the idea. I mean, paint.net, obviously it's a pure Windows application. That's launched as well, there's paint.net, running on the Mac. Maximize it. It's kind of seamless. I should've mentioned as well, obviously, when you're running these Parallels sessions, you've got access to all the local resources on the device, as well as the network resources as well.

Just going to open this on the Mac. Okay, right. Okay, so that's Macs. We do have Linux as well. So, X to go, connecting to a Linux session back at the University. Just want to highlight as well I'm not cheating, X to go is running via Cloudpaging. Practice what I preach. Just unlock me session. Okay, Linux. I know even less about Linux than what I do about Macs, but I did manage to create a shortcut to the app hub on the desktop, which I was quite proud of, and set a default browser.

So here we are, I'm on Linux. Yeah, no different, again. Pick a particular application, I'm going to avoid ArcGIS, because it's something. Let's try GIMP, graphics package. Quite a meaty package. It's obviously, it's reverted to my previous session there, so paint.net, but there's GIMP loading.

Now, one thing to mention about what I've showed you before when running Parallels, I did have the Parallels client installed on those machines. So you get a more seamless experience. You get the seamless window. But Parallels isn't just for the native. It will support HTML5. So I haven't got the client installed, although there is a client for Linux. I haven't installed the Linux client here. So what you'll notice here is all these applications are now saying via Parallels HTML5. But GIMP has launched, GINP's launched there. It's not quite as seamless as before, because it is actually running within the web browser, because it's HTML5.

What this basically means is really now we can deliver applications to almost any internet-enabled device. Everything's kind of HTML5 now. So as Ryan mentioned before, I put some pressure on him to get the Xbox and the PlayStation 4 working, mainly because I wanted to play Elite at home. But no, in all seriousness, I'll demonstrate this working on an iPad, and an Apple device. Sorry, an Android device. You know, but the real estate on the screen on them is quite small. You know, so if you want to do Solid Works and that it is a bit restrictive. You connect a keyboard and a mouse up to one of those games consoles, you know you've got your 40 inch or 20 inch TV there, It is extremely usable.

So it's not a gimmick really, making it work on the Xbox. I would've loved to demonstrate that today, but time is too short. We couldn't get our system upgraded to 2.6 in time. So we're still running 2.5. I do have 2.6 in the test environment, but that's kind of like an isolated domain. So I have tested it, Ryan, and it does work, that's great. I would've loved to have shown it on the Xbox, but unfortunately I can't. You just have to trust me, it does work. I mean in all essence, if you've got a fridge at home with a web browser on the front of it, which posh people do have, with HTML5, you can run Solid Works on that if you so wanted to.

What else on Linux. Oh, look. So yeah, I'll just go to another device, probably the last device. How am I doing? 10? 10 minutes, I got 10 minutes. Good. Another device here, I've got an android tablet. I'll just kick a couple of things off, just so I can share the screen. Just going to use team viewer again, just close that down. Just one thing to mention there, when I was on the Linux I was SSH'ing back onto Durham University, so that Linux session was actually on the University site. I'm just being open and transparent there. But this tablet, it's back on the Radisson Wi-Fi.

Any guess what I'm going to do? I'm going to launch AppsAnywhere, shortcut on the hub. Can you all see that? Yeah? Sign in, with me fat fingers. It looks a little different. Let's have, so I have the BBC emulator running again. Now this is running HTML5, so there is a Parallels client. Coming in 2.5, we can't link in the Parallels client on android, is that right? 2.6 coming, or is it coming? 2.6 we can, yep. But, there's the BBC emulator with GIMP running in the background, because it's going to me same session.

Yeah, me fat fingers aren't damn selecting that, but I think you get the gist. I think it's because I got me edges on the screen. Castle conquest, that was a good one, wasn't it? Has a bit of music to it. No sounds then. You get the idea.

Right, so that's android, iOS, Linux, any version of Windows really. So when I was mentioning before, we still got sort of like a bunch of Windows 7 machines floating around. Obviously what we do now is we can now Parallels our applications to the existing Windows 7 state. I think that kind of concludes the demo. I do lie before, I said I only had one slide. I do have another slide, and one further slide, which is this one here.

Okay, give some thanks out. So I'm standing up here and I'm demonstrating this. It wasn't all done by me. First of all, I'd like to thank Jim Macura, King of the North. So Jim was the project manager for this project. He had all these crazy ideas, you know, and I was somewhat reluctant. 17 years I'd been doing my desktops, I didn't want this launching from IE nonsense. But Jim's vision has come to fruition, so thanks for that, Jim. We had some clashes in the early days, but I don't think the desktop wouldn't have been what it is if we didn't have our healthy discussions.

Good, yep. I really would like to thank Mike Marston. We have a very small desktop team at Durham University, sometimes it's only me, but hopefully that's going to be addressed. But I mean, these two guys, it wouldn't be what it is without them. Mike, guy here, he's packaged most of the applications, not all of them, but he's the packaging guru, he's also the scripting guru. Craig, SCCM guru, and general all-around guru. Yes, so thanks to you guys. And yes to rock stars.

No doubt. I mean, their eyes must roll, because I'm often sending them emails, or I'm on the phone, and picking faults, or just being downright stupid. So yeah, so we got Idnan there, he does our upgrades. I'm always raising calls with him. And we got Marcus here, he was involved in the initial set up and the ongoing support of it all. Phil, for suggesting this crazy idea of launching all of our apps from IE. And Ryan there, looks like he's the leader of the pack there. On lead vocals, yeah, with all the genius to actually make the thing work. What was that Goldstar program you were talking about before?

Pioneer.

Pioneer program, yes. So I do have an idea for the Pioneer program. I haven't run this past you. As you can probably tell, I have a little penchant for, sort of, like retro kind of themes. So back in the eighties, we had classrooms filled with BBC Micros, great stuff, awesome. So I would like you to do is basically, maybe I'll cook up the HTML5 browser for that, and then will get the app up running on a classroom of BBCs. I've actually brought one in here for you. I'm not serious, but it would be great.

 

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