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Code and Concept – Monthly update November `18

Code and Concept – Monthly update November `18

It’s come a little late, but still: with one foot already in December – our monthly update for November! There is quite a bit to talk about – a possible issue with upgrading the Filr 3.4.2 Desktop Client has been found, but has already been given a remedy, there was an interesting talk about the psychological background of „being phished“  by our own Werner Degenhardt at the “netzblicke” – series of events, and this month’s Use Case Spotlight sheds light on the subject of „Distribution Lists and Vibe“: how can distribution lists be managed in the best way to enable recipients to filter out unwanted  noise, but to provide all the important information to all the relevant people?

Filr Client for Windows issue after upgrading to Filr 3.4.2. The problem and the solution:

A problem was found on some client machines, where the contents of the Filr folder did not show up or seemed broken after the upgrade to Filr 3.4.2 under Windows. After an upgrade or installation of the Filr Desktop Client using the MSI-version of the installation program, either manually or through a desktop management solution, the data in the Filr merged view did sometimes appear as “$DATA” or as “Zone.Identifier”. Also, in some cases, the error message “Filr Service is not working” could be seen – then with the Filr folder showing up completely empty. All other clients of Filr in version 3.4.x (mobile applications, web and macOS) are functioning perfectly. The solution to this issue is to either reinstall the Filr 3.4.2 desktop client using the EXE installer file, or to update the workstations Microsoft .NET Framework to version 4.6.2 (or higher). Also, if a desktop management system like ZENWorks is managing the clients, then Microsoft .NET 4.6.2 or higher should be set as a dependency of the Filr client package! The cause of this problem is a rather simple one – if the .msi file is used in unattended mode, Microsoft .NET is not installed in or upgraded to version 4.6.2 automatically, as it is with the EXE installer – and Filr 3.4.2 needs .NET 4.6.2 or higher to function properly. The MSI installer per se is often meant ot be used by professionals in controlled enviroments, so this behaviour was not caught in testing beforehand. More information about the issue and the solution can be found in TID #7023516 (link: https://support.microfocus.com/kb/doc.php?id=7023516

Human Factors in Information Security: Lecture at “Netzblicke”

As we already announced in our last blog post, Dr. Werner Degenhardt – our specialist for Human Factors in Information Security – gave an interesting and well-attended talk titled “Why we fall for phishing and what you can do about it” at the event series “netzblicke” of the Chamber of Commerce for Munich and Upper Bavaria. The focus of the talk was placed around questions about the structure and inner workings of a malware attack using phishing emails on humans, the „weakest link“. The talk covered the human way of handling such a situation, the human being‘s cognitive and social heuristics, and last but not least, the question of why , in certain circumstances, people make not only wrong decisions, but bad decisions.The event series “netzblicke” leverages strong partners of the Munich Chamber of Commerce to  inform attendees in a a general fashion on topics from the fields of Internet, online and media. This was the final event for this year, before taking a winter break – in February 2019, however, more events are already schedule!

Use Case Spotlight: Micro Focus Vibe and Email – Session Two

In one of our recent Use Case Spotlights, titled “Micro Focus Vibe and Email – Session One”, we used Micro Focus Vibe as an email archive to keep distribution list contents available and searchable in one place for a long time. This „Session Two“  deals with replacing a distribution list altogether using a Vibe folder with ist e-mail functionality.

The Challenge

Email distribution lists are one of the standard means of enterprise broadcast communication, and have followed seamlessly in the footsteps the of postal distribution lists. There are distribution lists for teams, distribution lists for departments, distribution lists for security bulletins, distribution lists forcafeteria menus, distribution lists for facilty management information and many more. Back in „paper times“, only a consciously selected group of people was included in a postal distribution list, because an increase in the number of people caused a lot more work and cost. In times of “free” and fast e-mail, a much larger number of people is aded to a distribution lists – sometimes even at a whim – , and someimes an individual is a member of so many lists that even important information posted to a list can produce the same emotional reaction as a SPAM email. But don’t despair – Vibe has a remedy to this affliction of modern communication.

The Solution

Every folder in Vibe offers the fucntionality of “subscribing” to it, meaning  to receive emails when changes in that folder happen. It’s up to the subscriber whether the email received is a 140-character email, an email with or without attachments, or just a daily digest of all changes, reducing email volume greatly. But not only the user can subscribe to a folder, a person managing a Vibe folder has the ability to „subscribe others“ to the folder, with the same granularity of control. That is what we will use to our benefit, here. The first goal is to replace distribution lists that have content classified as “for your information” only. This is done by creating a Vibe folder with a nice, descriptive name and then use “subscribe others” to inform all former distribution list  members via “push” at set times. So every participant still gets emails (no change for the user to get used to, at first), but there are a lot of advantages:

* The time of delivery is easier to control

* The emails have a consistent design, powered by Vibe email templates

* The contents are, as already described in Session One, already archived and ubiquitously available

* Each recipient can use the “subscribe to this folder” function to change the preferences regarding the type of email and email timing  to fit their needs

* Each recipient can even block the subscription, e.g. if they visit  the folder regularly anyway. This is a proper “opt-out” functionality.

These are just the largest and most immediate benefits – you can achieve even more improvements of the status quo by clever organisation of folders to leverage multi-folder subscriptions.As you can see, Vibe helps with making life easier in any organization. Even in the area “Vibe and E-Mail”, there is still much to cover – but more about that in the future, in Session Three on this topic. This is all for our Monthly Blog Post of November 2018. Of course, we will keep you up to date and deliver valuable news and information here on the site. And as always: if you have any questions, remarks, or comments: feel free to get in touch.

Code and Concept Monthly – October `18

We have, once again, carried together important and interesting news for you this October. Now that summer holidays are over and we have managed the first wave of colds and flu season, the time for events and webinars has started. Also, a new version of mobile Apps for Filr has been released, which triples the choice of supported management solutions. Finally, we have written another interesting Use Case Spotlight about Micro Focus Vibe for you. Enjoy reading!

“netzblicke”

We have already mentioned it in the announcement of this event here in the blog , and here’s a friendly reminder: at the “netzblicke” event „Sicherheit im Netz – so geht´s“ (Security on the Internet – How To) hosted by the IHK Academy in Munich at October, 25th 2018 Dr. Werner Degenhardt from Code and Concept will be giving a talk about psychological factors of IT security. The topic is „Psychologie der IT-Sicherheit: Warum wir auf Phishing hereinfallen und was man dagegen tun kann“ (Psychology of IT Security: Why we fall for Phishing Mails and what we can do about it).

TTP Conference

In November, the TTP Technology Conference takes place again in Bangalore. We have already reported about it in our September Monthly blog post. Registration is still open, and remember that the TTP APAC is not only addressed to TTP members exclusively, but also to interested partners and customers.

TTP Education Fund

The TTP Education Fund has reached its first goal! The first student financially sponsored by the TTP Education Fund has enrolled at the University of Bangalore and is studying “Computer Science Engineering” now. We do wish her all the best and success for her studies and congratulate the TTP Education Fund, and we are proud to have helped reaching this goal with our contribution. Get yourself informed and do also support the TTP Education Fund to help young people in India reaching a higher education, which enables them and their families to take the first step out of poverty.

New version of the Filr app

Having access to necessary files anywhere and anytime on the mobile device can be an immense advantage. However, this advantage for the administration – in particular with the BYOD concept – is associated with increased administrative effort. At the point where the overhead and hassle begin, mobile device management (MDM) or enterprise mobility management (EMM) is often used. Mobilelron support has been integrated into Filr Mobile Apps for some time, which has improved the security of mobile device data access for customers using MobileIron. However, for customers using a different MDM / EMM, there is good news: the Micro Focus Filr mobile apps now also support AppConfig and ZENWorks Configuration Management. This makes it possible to integrate the Filr app into the central device management even better and more flexibly, and in the best case it can even save license costs! Update your mobile apps and your Filr system! If you need support, we are here for you!

Use Case Spotlight – practical: cost and resource conservation.

Order food with Micro Focus Vibe in a canteen over a vibe form.

In cafeterias and company restaurants, a lot of food is prepared unnecessarily – from each menu variant should finally be enough for the employees in stock. The problem: Nobody knows in advance, who chooses what food – so a lot of food is thrown away and so wasted. A menu plan –   a pre-selection per week per employee – solves the problem of excess preparation. Using a simple vibe form, this planning is easy, sustainable and cost-cutting.

Challenge

Particularly in small and medium-sized enterprises – especially where the cost of catering in the canteen or the company restaurant is borne by the AG – the preparation of large amounts of food is a not inconsiderable cost factor. The unpredictability of the purchase quantities complicates the work of the kitchen staff and the purchasing planning – it must always be paid with a variation in the diet always very much, which new court “arrives” – some new food is sold out after half an hour, some become the counter-custodian.This inefficiency is a waste of valuable resources and, not least, a burden on the environment – “sustainability” looks different, so what is needed is to pre-order next week’s menus as simply as possible, which will not only make the kitchen better Planning, but gives employees the ability to view absences (“no canteen today”) and thus waste even less food Such a pre-order should be easy to access and easy to manage.

Solution

With Micro Focus Vibe, this use case can be implemented easily and efficiently. For this purpose, a simple form is created, which contains a selection field for each day of the week in which, for example, the options “Menu1”, “Menu2”, “Menu3” and “No food” are available.Employees are embedded on a landing page with the next week’s menu, along with a link to fill out the form – so they can make informed decisions and fill in their order for the entire next week, up to a deadline. On the deadline the kitchen evaluates the orders and carries out their corresponding planning. In the planned week is then every day almost exactly the right amount of food for all available and prepared. The costs for the company and the environment can be reduced so much because surplus is hardly produced any more. In addition, the whole thing can be further optimized by the employees also specify the approximate time of their lunch break – so preparation times can be planned and the food spends less time in unhealthy keeping warm.This makes it easy to improve for everyone involved, thanks to the flexibility and easy-to-use capabilities of Micro Focus Vibe.

Good Appetite!

Code and Concept Monthly – September ’18

In our September Monthly we mention new versions and updates of the Micro Focus Collaboration and File Management Solutions Vibe and Filr.
Also, you are invited to join the Micro Focus Customer Roundtable in October.
On top of that, the TTP Technical Conference in Bangalore, India is opening its doors for Non-TTP-Members such as partners and customers (on invitation) this November. This is a unique chance to take part in in-depth, technical sessions from an admin’s and user’s perspective as well as in discussions with Micro Focus representatives and to gather information on the products and their future directly from product management.


Vibe 4.0.5 has been released

The Micro Focus Vibe development team has done a great job and finished the new version Vibe 4.0.5. Que Mangus from Micro Focus talks about this version’s new features in his latest Cool Solutions Article.
You can also find details about the new functionalities on the Micro Focus Vibe product page.

Also available in the Micro Focus download area are new versions of Vibe Desktop, the Vibe Add-in for Office and Vibe Edit-In-Place. More information on their installation is available in the Vibe documentation.

Read more


Register now for the Micro Focus Customer Roundtable from October, 8th-17th 2018

The Micro Focus and Open Horizons Customer Roundtable – happening from October 8th – 17th 2018 in different European locations – is focusing exclusively on products and solutions of the former Novell brand.

Seize the opportunity to meet with some of the Micro Focus Product Management and Support team experts and register here now. Attending the Roundtable is free of charge.

Read more


Filr 3.4.1 Update is released

Micro Focus has released the Filr 3.4.1 Update. This update provides an updated Filr Desktop client for Mac to update the FUSE version to accommodate Mac 10.14.
You can update to Filr 3.4.1 via the Online Update Channel.

Read more


TTP Bangalore Technical Conference – November, 17th-23rd 2018

The TTP Conference, a unique event by Micro Focus‘ Academic Community the TTP (Technology Transfer Partners), is going to Bangalore, India this upcoming November. Attendees will have the opportunity to get together with developers as well as product management of the applications they use and to directly discuss important features and product roadmaps.

This year, for the first time, a small number of Micro Focus Partners and individuals from large corporate and government customers from around the world will have the opportunity to join the event on invitation and take part in in-depth technical sessions, unique workshops on the weekend before the event and in product discussions, round tables and futures sessions.

As always, there will be no charge for TTP members for the conference itself (only travel and hotel costs). Non-TTP members will be charged a small fee of $300 for the event including the weekend training course.

If you are interested, please contact us for further information and a personal invitation.

Filr 3.4.1 Update is released

Micro Focus has released the Filr 3.4.1 Update. This update provides an updated Filr Desktop client for Mac to update the FUSE version to accommodate Mac 10.14.

You can update to Filr 3.4.1 via the Online Update Channel.

This update is intended to address the issues outlined in the following TID:
TID 7023368 – Filr Mac Client error: The installed version of FUSE is too old for the operating system.

In case there are any questions regarding the update or any other question around Micro Focus Filr, please contact us. We are happy to help you.

Micro Focus Customer Roundtable from October, 8th – 17th 2018

Micro Focus Customer Roundtable 2018

The Micro Focus and Open Horizons Customer Roundtable – happening from October 8th – 17th 2018 in different European locations – is focusing exclusively on products and solutions of the former Novell brand.

Seize the opportunity to meet with some of the Micro Focus Product Management and Support team experts and register here now. Attending the Roundtable is free of charge.

Mike Bills (Product Management Collaboration), Vikram Goyal (Product Manager ZENworks), Ed Shropshire (Product Management File & Print Services) and Tarik Baki, responsible for customer support, will share insights into the product roadmaps and strategy across

  • ZENworks® Endpoint Management
  • Open Enterprise Server (OES)
  • File Governance, iPrint and Filr
  • GroupWise®, Vibe, Enterprise Messaging and more.

More information, agenda and registration here: https://www.eventbrite.de/e/customer-roundtable-registration-48325268178

Vibe 4.0.5 is released and now available in the Micro Focus Customer Center

The Micro Focus Vibe development team has done a great job and finished the new version Vibe 4.0.5. Que Mangus from Micro Focus talks about this version’s new features in his latest Cool Solutions Article.

You can also find details about the new functionalities on the Micro Focus Vibe product page.

Also available in the Micro Focus download area are new versions of Vibe Desktop, the Vibe Add-in for Office and Vibe Edit-In-Place. More information on their installation is available in the Vibe documentation.

Changes in Vibe 4.0.5

  • A redesigned and enhanced download page for user applications
  • Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF) protection is now enabled by default
  • The Edit-in-Place Java Applet has been replaced with platform-specific executables
  • The File Upload Applet has been upgraded to HTML5-based functionality
  • OpenJDK replaces other Java installations for Vibe
  • Oracle Stellent has been replaced by Micro Focus KeyView for HTML-viewing and text-filtering functionality
  • The Workflow Designer applet has been replaced with HTML5-based functionality
  • SLES 15 Support

Bug Fixes in Vibe 4.0.5

  • 998173 Wiki and Photo Albums Add Files still uses the applet uploader
  • 998854 Profile Pictues, with COSMOGIAI, are shown broken for external users who do not have COSMOGIAI
  • 1028519 Firefox 52 disables applets – workflow viewer and file upload fail silently!
  • 1031603 Cannot add files to “My Workspace > Photo Album” folder from Vibe Web Client (Mac+Safari)
  • 1032033 Enable Cross Site Request Forgery (CSRF) protection
  • 1073970 Deleting an entry fails with an unknown error
  • 1074173 HTML attachments are missing on entries created by inbound mail
  • 1075662 User not seen in user list. Reindex returns with one error
  • 1076061 Copying a discussion entry from one folder to another results in a second copy of entry in source folder and nothing in destination
  • 1077434 Thrashing on a folder containing workflow-controlled file entries
  • 1078029 Issues with MSURI edit
  • 1085100 Followup to previous CSIR database issues using Oracle DB
  • 1089896 When there are two survey questions on a landing page, only one answer works
  • 1093164 After Upgrade to 4.0.4 from 4.0.3 Edit This File opens garbled login page on workstation in Office (excel, word, etc…)
  • 1095149 Error registering external user
  • 1095968 Wrong document updated with Vibe plugin for MS Office
  • 1096278 AD ‘Password Expiry Policy’ calculation issue
  • 1097399 Users with extended characters in password cannot login
  • 1099385 When importing iCal from URL, iCal Module treats events with a DTSTART not having a time zone as All Day
  • 1101963 Database problems with MS SQL Server 2008R2
  • 1104222 Unable to save word or excel files using latest Windows Add In
  • 1104861 Need Documentation on Installing JDK 9 or later for Remote Database Installation

Of course, we’ll be happy  to assist in keeping your Vibe installation up to date.

The edit-in-place functionality for “Edit this file” using MSURI (for Microsoft Office 2010 or later) or VibeURI (for Open Office, Libre Office or older versions of Microsoft Office) may show unexpected behaviour after this upgrade if precautions are not taken. Feel free to contact us for more information on this.

Feel free to contact us in case you need support with planning and applying this update. We are looking forward to helping you.


Register now – Vibe 4.0.5 Release Webinar

On Thursday, September 27th 2018, 6:00 pm (CEST) you can attend a webinar to get to know Vibe 4.0.5 and its new features. Register now here.

Code and Concept Monthly – August ’18

This month, our Code and Concept Monthly is arriving a little later than usual – this is done mainly so that this post does not get lost in the holiday-pile up that is your attention-inbox. And on top of that it means there is even more interesting content for our readers. This time, we not only have some fresh patches for Micro Focus Vibe and Micro Focus Filr for you, but we are throwing a glance current events in IT security, we give you some news about Micro Focus Filr as a product and about upcoming webinars, and naturally we shine a light on how to get the most out of your favourite tools in a new Use Case Spotlight.

Patches for Micro Focus Vibe and Micro Focus Filr

Vibe Java Applets: Updates for Expired Certificates are available

Java Applets and WebStart-Components are used in Micro Focus Vibe to present you an easy way of uploading folders full of content by drag-and-drop, they simplify the direct editing of files through the edit-in-place functions, and they enable the graphical view of workflow designs with the Workflow-Viewer.

Since August 1st, 2018, end users of  Micro Focus Vibe 4.0.4 or Novell Vibe 3.4  can experience a Java Warning message, notifiying them of the expiration of a signature on the code, which makes the Java Runtime see the code as untrustworthy, so the code will not run. As a result, files cannot be added via the applet-based Drag-and-drop feature (Ctrl-Click on “Add Files..”), “Edit this File” becomes unusable, and the Workflow Designer as well as the workflow history do not show the Workflow Preview any more. But also since the 1st of August, there are updates available for Vibe that replace the applet and WebStart components wit freshly signed files, that have a signature validity well into 2021.

The majority of our customers – all affected ones, that is – have installed the updates with us already. You can find the Java Applets Patch here, as well as via the Novell Patch Finder. Depending on your installation, the installation may come with a small obstacle, which is overcome easily. If you would like our assistance when installing the Applet Update, don’t hesitate to contact us!

Filr and L1TF/ForeShadow: A Patch is available

For all Filr 3 – systems, the „Filr 3.0 Security Update 5“ is available via the Filr Patch Channel. It contains patches for the security issues recently published under the monikers  „L1 Terminal Fault“ and  „Foreshadow“, which affect modern CPUs. More information on the patch can be found here. As usual, this patch is applied via the Filr Appliance Update Channel – on release of the patch, in some instances there were delays in patch visibility when refreshing the list of available updates in the appliance configuration interface – updates on that are posted here. For questions and in case of issues, we are – as always – here for you.

Sextortion: “We have recorded what you did in front of the computer”!

The tag-alongs in the multi-billion business of internet pron have come up with an especially devious plot – they are sending emails that may give many people a little jump-scare.
The mail start somethink like this:

„I’m aware that XXXXXXX is your password.
You don’t know me and you’re thinking why you received this e mail, right?
Well, I actually placed a malware on the porn website and guess what, you visited this web site to have fun (you know what I mean). While you were watching the video, your web browser acted as a RDP (Remote Desktop) and a keylogger which provided me access to your display screen and webcam. Right after that, my software gathered all your contacts from your Messenger, Facebook account, and email account.
What exactly did I do?
I made a split-screen video. First part recorded the video you were viewing (you’ve got a fine taste haha), and next part recorded your webcam (Yep! It’s you doing nasty things!).

Even smartphone users are being targeted by this sextortion scam, and the messages there start like this:

„It seems that, +1-951-xxx-xx01, is your phone number. You may not know me and you are probably wondering why you are getting this e mail, right?“

The email contains a threat to send the video to all contacts found on the phone or the PC, and the scammer demands the transfer of a not insubstantial sum in Bitcoin to a given Bitcoin address, together with getting-started information on BitCoin ans well as an ultimatum.

The sad fact is: there are recipients of these scam mails who do pay money to the scammers. This can easily be seen by following the transactions of the target address via the public Bitcoin blockchain. Since the phone number looks “real enough”, and since the passwords given are real passwords (although maybe older ones), for some there is  enough reason to believe the scammers.

Bu wait a minute: where did the scammer get the password or the telephone number? Phone numbers are easy, of course, they are available all over the internet. But the password? Well, the password is on the internet, too. A large number of hacked accounts are in circulation, which have been compromised by one of the big account leaks in recent years. If you want to check for yourself, just go to https://haveibeenpwned.com/ , a page that shows if the password from the scam email has been affected. The emails are a bluff, of course, and are probably created using a script that uses a large dataset of stolen personal data. There are no recordings, and no malware was installed. There is no reason to pay any amount of any currency, whatsoever.

But still, these scam mails are a warning shot. Is the password given one that you used on other accounts, too? At Amazon, Facebook, Google? is it used on more seldom-used accounts like public library access, or your account on a family members PC? It might be time to think about ways of creating, using and managing safe and secure passwords.

If you want to talk about your requirements in IT security, especially the human facotrs in that area, we are there for you!

Filr Update

Implementing Customer Ideas in Filr 3.4

When planning the development efforts for the current version 3.4 of Micro Focus Filr, product and development managers at Micro Focus have listened to customers, partners and users, and have implemented another 24 ideas drom the Ideas Portal, shich brings the total of customer requests that wew realised to 83! This Cool Solutions post has the information and links: https://www.novell.com/communities/coolsolutions/filr-3-4-listened/ .

Of course, for future product development, user feedback will have the same level of importance for the Micro Focus Filr team, and everyones input is welcome and appreciated.  Version 3.4.1 is already in the beta phase, and brings new improvements once more. So, naturally, ideas for new features, or ideas on how to improve the functionality or ease of use for existing features, can and should be posted on the  Filr Idas Portal continually, and if you do not want to put out your own ideas, vote for the ones that are there and help the product team prioritise ideas! Take part in the future of the products you use: join in!

Filr Advanced for OES / NOWS Customers

Since mid-June of 2018, Micro Focus customers who are current on maintenance for OES or NOWS – and thus are entitled to use Micro Focus Filr – have the opportunity to upgrade to the Advanced Edition of Micro Focus Filr at a very competitive price point. They do, however, need to license all OES/NOWS users for Filr Advanced, and must stay under active maintenance to be valid.

We can only recommend this great offer to any and all OES and NOWS customers who are under maintenance, so they can take advantage of the host of features that the Micro Focus Filr Advanced Edition offers – like the extended security features, sharing of Folders from Net Folders, mobile and desktop app branding and the integration tools for Microsoft Office! And if you are an OES or NOWS customer, but you are not yet using Filr: what are you waiting for? You have an entitlement to use a secure, stable, and scalable file access and sharing platform that will stop your users from using the likes of dropbox and OneDrive! More information on the featres you get extra if you go with the Advanced edition can be found at https://www.microfocus.com/products/filr/features/#version.

We are available for any questions around Micro Focus Filr or on the transition to the Advanced Edition – just get in contact!

Webinars

Micro Focus is making an on-demand Webinar zu den Neuerungen in Filr 3.4 available. The webinar shows you how to use the new features to get users be more productive, and to make the administrators’ life easier.
The webinar is a recording of a webinar from July 2018, so you can view it whenever you like, and as often as you like.

Additionally, there will be a webinar on September 26th, 2018, from 16:30h-17:30h CEST, covering „An early look at OES 2018 SP1“. That webinar will not only inform about the improved performance in the whole stack of NSS/CIFS/NCP and the improvements in Domain Services for Windows, but also cover the advancements made in the area of cloud-integrated storage, which enables customers to have policy-controlled shifting of content and data into the storage system that is best for the data, or that simply offers the best price for the byte – be it on prem, private cloud or even public cloud. All while keeping data safety and data security levels where you’ve come to expect them with enterprise-grade proucts from Micro Focus (and Novell before). Registration and info on the webinar can be found here.

Use Case Spotlight: Micro Focus Vibe and Email – Session One

The many of features and possibilites offered by Micro Focus Vibe often do not jump out at you, so sometimes they seem more hidden than they really are. We will demonstrate in this Use Case Spotlight how easy and pactical it is, still, to generate added value with simple measures and configuration options. In future spotlights aound the topic “Vibe and Email”, we will cover more facets of this feature set – this time we cover the use of Micro Focus Vibe as a mail archive for distribution lists.

The Challenge

New email, old emails – whenever a new recipient is added to a distribution list or mailing list, they have no access to older emails ehich were sent to the list previously. Discussion start “somewhere in the middle”, and questions to the list are sometimes answered by referencing old mail threads. It somehow feels like joining a week-long workshop two days late. So one asks colleagues and with a little luck one of them has a collection of old list mails that is presentable or even exportable. The same problem exists for lists that are used for regular department or team bulletins. Even for the administrators, getting a proper overview on list contents can be hampered by technical or by legal road blocks. Often, the call is made for a mail archiving solution, but an “offical” mail archiving tool is geared toward legal requirements for archival and does not fit the bill, here.

The Solution

A solution is simple when using Micro Focus Vibe: use MIcro Focus Vibe as an email archive. To do that, a folder is created in a reasonable or meaningful place – meaning one that is found easily by participants, like a department workspace, a team workspace, or even a personal or public area. As folder type, the Discussion Folder fits the use case very well, since its folder listing gives a good overview of its contents. Next, the folder is configured as per the documentation to have a “Simple URL” and to allow emails to be sent into the folder – this lets the folder have an email address that accepts emails from all users who have the right to create entries in the folder.
Inbound emails are shown in the folder as Micro Focus Vibe entries: the entry title receives the email subject, the entry description field gets the email body, and any attachments on the email will be added to the entry as attachments.
Micro Focus Vibe‘s powerful access control is used to control who can send emails into the archive and who can read it. By default, only the members of the distribution list get access – a setting that is extremely easy if you manage your lists in an LDAP-aware system like GroupWise or (if properly configured) MS Exchange. When set up this way, every new member of the distribution list only needs to be sent the link to the Vibe folder, and they can immediately browse the list archives and then take part in the discussion using the knowledge passed to the list in the past.

You can find more Use Case Spotlights in our regular Code and Concept Monthly updates – feel free to browwse the archives. If you have any questions, or if you want your own use case to be presented, just get in touch!

Code and Concept Monthly – July ’18

The summer slump – or summer holiday season – is almost upon us, but still there is a lot going on to be talked about! Check out the events of the near future: on July 25th, you can grab your seat in an interesting webinar – Filr Micro Focus 3.4 has been released, and there are many improvements to take advantage of.

On the topic of security: the Live-Phishing Awareness Campaign in Kiel has led to a substantial response in media, resulting in many municipalities becoming more aware of the fact that citizens have a right to data protection.

Advances in digital transformation: Micro Focus Vibe and Micro Focus Filr can create a competitive advantage in this field for all IT-supported organizations.

Issues resolved: an FTF for Micro Focus Vibe 4.0.4 brings fixes for two issues in the registration/authentication area.

Our Use Case Spotlight will be covering Filr this month, and how Filr can be used to make your daily work life easier and to speed up existing processes.

 

Filr 3.4 Webinar July 25th 2019

To make sure that you find a webinar time slot that suits you, no matter where you are, the webinar will be held in three time slots:

In this webinar, the product team will be presenting and demonstrating the new features that have found their way into the product with the newest release Filr 3.4 – features for end users as well as administrators:

Filr users will become more productive:

  • They can now send “File Request” from the My Files area in Filr.
  • The Filr web interface now switches it’s language to the language set in the user’s browser, to make using Filr easier.
  • A Technical Preview for the Filr Desktop Client for Linux is now available for ubuntu machines.
  • An email notification will be sent when a share is first accessed, and there is a report of accesses to a shared item.
  • In iOS 11, the integrations in to the native “Files” app were improved (e.g. around SSO and NativeUI).

New controls will make life easier for Filr administrators:

  • Administrators can now set the default expiration time for new shares (until now, this was always “until the end of time”).
  • For better data protection, the admin can now chose to hide users’ LDAP IDs from other users, making social engineering attacks harder.
  • Net Folders can now be configured to be invisible to the Desktop Client, and can also be configured to be visible, but unavailable for synchronization, saving client disk space in case of user error.
  • The Outlook Plug-In was improved: it is now possible to send File Links without the need for authentication or registration. Recipients of Files do not need to register themselves as a Filr user. This was a much-requested feature by users on the Ideas portal, and once more, Micro Focus delivered.

On top of all this, the Webinar will be covering the correct steps for upgrading a Filr site to Filr 3.4 via the Online Update Channel, and for configuring the system properly.

 

Live Phishing Training in Kiel – Other Municipalities are Following Suit

On the topic of Cyber Attacks, the State capital Kiel has been once bitten, and now is twice shy – since the City was affected by a phishing attack and “smuggled” Trojan software some time ago. With a Live Phishing Training, the city council conducted a campaign for raising awareness and for training their employees. More than 3000 employees have been trained, and the outstanding success of the campaign has led to a large echo in media all over the country, lending to it achieving “Lighthouse” status: it not only has resulted in a higher level of problem awareness with the employees, but also with other municipalities.

To recap – the phenomenon: through using fake websites, fake e-mails of fake text messages, attackers gain login details that allow the culprit to access networks and access privileged data – more than 90 percent of cyber attacks start with one of the notorious “phishing mail”.

Phishing-Mails come in various forms and flavors, and follow various patterns, for example the “payroll scam” pattern (28%), the “voucher with attached PDF” pattern (14%) or the “CEO scam” pattern (24%). To successfully attack a user, their attention is taken by supposedly important things. An email from payroll usually means it’s about their salary, a voucher makes them curious for the option to get “free stuff”, and if the CEO sends a direct email, it must by definition be an important and urgent issue, leading the user to divulge privileged data to make sure they get paid, to make a bargain, or to be seen as an efficient and worthy employee.

The core of the issue here is: the best technology will not help the situation, if the employees have not been made aware for the specific threat at hand – the motto has to be: raise awareness for the problem, and provide concrete advice on how to distinguish he bad emails from the good ones.

Citizens have a right to data security in public administration

In Kiel, three quarters of the employees were able to tell that a phishing e-mail sent to them was a fake. But unfortunately, only one single incautious employee is enough to let malicious software get into the network and spread there. Understandably, some of the “phished” people felt they had been blindsided and were not at all happy about it. But: security comes first, citizens have a right to protection of their data, and real phishing emails do not come with an advance warning!

For more information: here on our website, you will find the section Information Security and Data Protection, where there is more to be found on awareness raising for employees in the field and also the press review on the Live Phishing Training at Kiel.

 

Rationalization, Digital Transformation: Vibe and Filr provide a competitive advantage

On July 10th, 2018, two webcasts took place, which demonstrated the rationalization potential of Micro Focus Vibe and Filr. Rationalization is one of the decisive driving factors for organizations undergoing digital transformation.

Today, document management and enterprise content management entail a lot more than just search and retrieval of information items with audit-safe archival. Tailored solutions accelerate processes and support collaboration in organizations of any size as well as the collaboration with external experts.
Organizations are more and more in need of digital transformation to fuel their knowledge production, knowledge retainment and knowledge organization. A necessity for this is agile, quick and intelligent management of content, of access control and of information structure, as well as cooperation, collaboration and organization-internal communication.

The combination of Vibe and Filr delivers a wide range of essential functionality. Filr allows for secure file synchronization, sharing and very basic collaboration, while Vibe brings the full range of collaboration features with an even stronger focus on security, in some respects even down to field level. It provides workflow capabilities as well as strong auditing, and it can be used for full effect in many scenarios, e.g. as an intranet or DMS system. The two products are not only designed to run securely on premise, but function as well when hosted by a trusted partner or in a private cloud. They integrate well with more communication tools like Micro Focus GroupWise, Micro Focus Messenger, but also Microsoft Outlook and Microsoft Office. Their search capabilities are outstanding, and they can provide benefit right from day one.

Ask us what Vibe and Filr can do for your productivity and efficiency!

 

Two Fixes in Vibe 4.0.4 FTF1 for issues in Authentication and Registration

An FTF (a “Field Test File”, think “Hot Patch”) for Vibe has been released by Micro Focus. It addresses the following issues.

Issue 1: Some Active Directory users are unable to login to Vibe when a password expiration policy is enforced.

If your Vibe site authenticates users against a Microsoft Active Directory, and you have a domain-wide password expiry policy set as well as a local, GPO-based policy, then you might be affected by this issue. If the password expiry on the domain level is shorter, or stricter, than the one set on the GPO level, then the stricter of the policies will be in effect, effectively disabling Vibe login for a user as soon as the shorter expiry time is reached. This is due to the special way in which AD calculates password expiry. We have joined Micro Focus in analyzing this issue together with an affected customer, and Micro Focus has implemented a solution that not only fixes the current issue, but also enables protection against similar issues in the future.

If you suffer this issue, just open a Service Request with Micro Focus, referencing TID 7023145.

Issue 2: External users unable to complete registration in Vibe

If you use the sharing functionality and have external users register themselves after being invited, you might run into this issue. When a file is shared with an external user and they try to register using the link included in the invitation email, the normal registration screen shows. After filling out their information and clicking on” Register”, though, an error is displayed, giving the message “An error occurred in the registration process. Please try again”. If the user then tries to register again, the behavior of the UI stays the same and registration is not possible. The system error log shows no messages when this happens.

This issue has also been resolved by Micro Focus Engineering and has been rolled into the FTF for Vibe 4.0.4. If you suffer from this issue, open a Service Request with Micro Focus and reference TID 7023146.

 

Use Case Spotlight

This time around, our Use Case Spotlight covers Micro Focus Filr, the secure and powerful platform for your File Sync & Share-needs. You can leverage Filr to use your existing infrastructure more efficiently, because Filr provides you with features that integrate with your environment. This Use Case Spotlight demonstrates how you can speed up a process and massively remove overhead on a process that collects information in the field to be used inside the organization.

The Challenge

A large number of processes has field staff taking pictures and processing them back at their desk, or sending them to a staffer in-house for processing. Examples for such processes include field staff documenting damages, civil engineers and architects documenting the progress, the building or work quality, or craftsmen and contractors documenting the before and after state on a job. Each time, images are taken and either transferred to a stationary PC upon returning from the job, sent by email, or shared through an unsecure cloud storage provider. An in-house staffer has to download the pictures, file them, and can only then use them in the process. All this needs time, and sometime it not only delays the process, but also lowers data security and protection.

The Solution

Filr to the rescue! Using Micro Focus Filr, processes like that can be accelerated and made more secure in a transparent way. On the field staff’s mobile device, the Filr app is installed and configured for “automatic upload” of images. This makes the mobile device upload every image to Filr as soon as it is taken, and if needed it also deletes the image after successful upload. In case this is not wanted, for example in case of BYOD, the user can still upload the images to Filr from the device’s image gallery. The in-house staffer at their desk in the office has the Filr Desktop Client installed on their Windows PC, Linux PC, or Mac, and has the upload folder for images configured to synchronize automatically, so they get the images downloaded to their PC immediately after the upload has finished, so they can immediately start processing the images or ask for additional material if needed while field staff is still on site, saving additional trips. If the field staff is delivering items, and signed receipts or other documents are photographed on site and uploaded, the customer can be engaged by support staff right away to positive effect, and also the billing process can be streamlined and accelerated.
Used like this, Filr has the power to really boost efficiency in distributed processes. Get up to date about the advantages of Filr as a platform for your use cases, and convince yourself of the ease and accessibility of implementing them.

Just get in touch, and we will talk about your use case – and maybe your solution will be one of our Use Case Spotlights in the future!

Micro Focus has released Filr 3.4

Micro Focus Filr 3.4 is available now via the Online Update Channel and provides a number of bug fixes and new features. To update your Filr to 3.4 – or to upgrade your Filr installation to version Filr 3.0 – we strongly recommend to consult your Filr Partner.

Filr 3.4 update information is available in the Micro Focus Knowledgebase. Micro Focus again listened to customers and users, and realized various suggestions from the Ideas Portal in Filr 3.4 – view the list of completed ideas here.

New Features – Overview:

  • Granular controls for Net Folder access from Filr Desktop client (online-only or offline)
  • Ability to conceal user’s LDAP ID in Filr Web interface
  • Outlook Plugin enhancements to allow file downloads without authentication
  • Default expiration of (new and modified) Shares to 30 days
  • Email notification confirmation when a share is accessed for the first time
  • Share access report
  • Ability to detect user’s locale from browser when using the Filr Web interface
  • Ubuntu support for the Filr Desktop client for Linux
  • Integration with iOS native Files app

Bug Fixes in Filr 3.4

This patch is intended to address the issues outlined in the following TIDs:

  • TID 7020162 – Filr Desktop client shows Net Folders even if option to allow synchronization is disabled
  • TID 7021444 – Can’t view .pdf files from an iOS mobile device
  • TID 7022458 – File Request option not available for Home folders
  • TID 7023058 – Filr Desktop client for Linux fails to launch when another python based process is running
  • TID 7023061 – Filr does not honor rights based on Organizational Role in eDirectory
  • TID 7023062 – SuSEfirewall2 gets truncated on Filr appliances leading to an inaccessible Filr site
  • TID 7023063 – Filr rejects file uploads in Personal Storage with an out of quota error message
  • TID 7023064 – External user report in Filr ignores the email address value in the report
  • TID 7023065 – Filr login fails with error HTTP Status 500 No row with the given identifier exists
  • TID 7023066 – Option to share File Link greyed out in the Filr Desktop client share dialog
  • TID 7023067 – Microsoft Compatibility Appraiser triggers file downloads in Filr Desktop client
  • TID 7023068 – Cursor starts flashing if Filr Desktop client launch during Windows startup is diabled
  • TID 7023072 – Filr Reverse proxy configuration status always displayed as disabled on summary page
  • TID 7023073 – External user registration on very large Filr systems sometimes fail
  • TID 7023074 – Allow TLSv1.2 only on Filr Configuration Console (port 9443)
  • TID 7023080 – Filr activity report lists some administrative activities as default admin user only
  • TID 7023081 – Filr android app always shows upload path as My Files
  • TID 7023082 – Unable to scroll when selecting source folder for upload in Filr android app
  • TID 7023083 – Filr JDK Update for Oracle January-2018 Critical Patch Update
  • TID 7023089 – Filr activity report for same day does not show all activities
  • TID 7023098 – Jackson deserialization vulnerability in Filr (CVE-2017-7525, CVE-2017-15095, CVE-2017-17485)

 

For any questions concerning the new features, the update or how to set up and use Filr, please contact us. We are happy to help you.

 


 

Micro Focus’  Filr product management will inform about the new features in a Community Webinar on Wednesday, July 25th. Depending on your preferred starting time, you can use the links below to register:

As we have grown accustomed to, the Filr product team will use the webinar to present and demonstrate the new features in 3.4, which on the one hand will make the Filr users more productive, and on the other will provide Filr administrators with new configuration options to make their lives easier.

Code and Concept Monthly – June ’18

Our focus area „Human Factors in Information Security“ found a place at  CEBIT in Hannover on June 12.-15. with the Live Phishing Training, right alongside the usual CEBIT standards. The OH Summit 2018 in Berlin was a special event this time and Code and Concept was there again as speaker – read our event report! A new, very current webinar on Filr 3.4 has been posted – and part II of our current Use Case Spotlight can also be found in this Code and Concept Monthly.

 

„Sikosh“ at CEBIT

This year’s CEBIT was announced as „Europe’s Business-Festival for Innovation and Digital Transformation“ and of course, the topic of security was also covered this year. The GDPR enforces measures for sensitization and training for employees. In light of recent events, Frank Weidemann presented the SiKoSH project („Sicherheit für Kommunen in Schleswig-Holstein“ – Security for Municipalities in Schleswig-Holstein) at the booth of the federal state of Schleswig-Holstein. The main focus of this presentation was our joint project around Live Phishing Training, which has already received coverage in the publications „<kes>“ and „Die Gemeinde“.

According to all experts, Live Phishing Training is the most effective method for strengthening the human firewall against phishing attacks, and leads to lasting results.

A phishing vector is part of the pattern in almost all successful attacks run on information security by cyber criminals. Sensitization for employees is an ongoing and permanent task, awareness of the problem must be created, correct and secure behaviour must be taught, and learning by doing must be made possible. Read more about this topic.

 

Review  – this year’s OH Summit 2018 on June 4.-7. in Berlin

Around the Open Horizons Summit 2018, much was different and not much stayed the same. Same-ness could be found in the great community, the outstanding organisation, the excellent catering, the high technical level and in much of the list of speakers. Of course, we once more ran a Hotlab around making Micro Focus Vibe your collaboration hub.

The changes already started with the subtitle of the conference, which was „Micro Focus Channel Community Conference“. According to this, the event targeted the channel, meaning the partners and distributors of licenses, as a counterpart to the customer-focused Micro Focus Universe event. Of course, customers and solution partners were welcome, and this led to a well-mixed crowd of twice as many delegates as 2017. Micro Focus covered the summit as sole sponsor, apart from the award dinner on Monday. The topics that were covered had a much broader range due to Micro Focus growing to over 300 products, having grown by HP Enterprise Software recently. This necessitated more tracks and more sessions to get the content covered in just four days. This wide spectrum let the keynote presentation suffer from missing depth-of-field, but the sessions and hotlabs were as focused and spot on as ever. This year, Filr and Open Enterprise Server have excited us most as products showing high amounts of progress and innovation, and with even more potential for the customer. Also, we encourage existing GroupWise and Open Workgroup Suit Customers to take a look at the upgrade licensing for Enterprise Messaging. In our view, that product suite has made a lasting positive impression.
The general atmosphere at the summit was a mixed bag – there was confusion, and astonishment, and criticism, but also a large amount of curiosity regarding new solutions and products. This thirst for information was quenched, and when Micro Focus made a commitment to products like Micro Focus Vibe that are well loved by the community, hope and confidence were instilled into the community. To find out more, you can peruse our more detailed conference review.

 

Use Case Spotlight: Micro Focus Vibe

In our Code and Concept Monthly for May ’18, the Use Case Spotlight covered a well-known problem in today’s IT world – the management and documentation of IP address assignment. We presented the first stage of a solution that enabled a centralised and versioned storage of data, but which did not yet fight the issues created by data silos. Now, we ignite the second stage of the solution.

The Solution – Stage Two

The solution’s second stage leverages the strong customisability of the Vibe platform. Every user can – when given the proper privileges – create their own entry types and forms, with only minimal training in the form of a short introduction. Yes, it’s true: Vibe is not limited to the existing entry types (file, discussion, task, calendar, milestone, poll, guest book, micro blog or photo entry), but lets you create your own data types after your own fashion, which are immediately usable in the system. The tool for achieving this is a browser based point-and-click editor, there is no need for any programming or for knowledge in HTML, CSS or JavaScript. Vibe even takes care of field validation to make sure proper data is entered in e.g. number, date or email address fields.

For the „IP address entry“ type, fields were added for information that was the most important to the customer, this being fields for the IP address, the main user (or owner) of the address, the device name, the physical location and some additional process-related information, like an expiry date for temporary use or assignment of an IP address. This way, IP addresses now can be released for new use easily, because it is easy to ask the owner before the expiry time to check if the address is still needed. As a replacement for work sheets, which represented sub-nets in the old spreadsheet files, we chose Vibe folders. Per sub-net, there is one Vibe folder which also holds sub-net and contact information, and in the folders, there is one Vibe entry per IP address. The end result is a system, in which every authorised user not only has an immediate view on the current state of the IP assignments, but in which Vibe Workflow Processes are used to request IP address assignments, grant or deny such requests, to revoke IP address assignments, but also to simply send automated email notifications before expiry of an address is imminent. All this is no problem with Vibe workflows, and it simplifies the life of IT administrators at the site immensely. Vibe frees data from its silos and makes it useful and easy to work with.

Contact us and we will talk to you about your use case – maybe your solution will be one of or future Use Case Spotlights!

 

Filr 3.4. Webinar: Deep Dive

The upcoming version 3.4 of Micro Focus Filr is on the starting blocks, the beta-phase is running at full speed, and many customers and partners help Micro Focus honing the product. After the release, product management will inform about the new features in a Community Webinar on Wednesday, July 25th, that was just announced. Depending on your preferred starting time, you can use the links below to register:

As we have grown accustomed to, the Filr product team will use the webinar to present and demonstrate the new features in 3.4, which on the one hand will make the Filr users more productive, and on the other will provide Filr administrators with new configuration options to make their lives easier.

For end users, these features are new:

  • File request for “Home Folders”
  • Filr Web Client being able to sense browser’s language to help users use Filr better
  • Linux Client on Ubuntu (Tech Preview)
  • Email notification & report when a new share is accessed for the first time
  • iOS app Files App integration enhancements (SSO, Native UI, etc)

Administrators will be happy to learn about these features:

  • It is now possible to define a global default expiration time for new shares
  • There is a function to hide the LDAP ID of users
  • Net Folders on the desktop: there is the ability to hide them, make them read only or make them read/write
  • New enhancements to Outlook plugin: support for unauthenticated download links
  • Attendees will also be shown the steps to use the software channel for upgrades.

 

Do you have questions or suggestions? Contact us!