back to article Breaking up is hard to do: Airbus, new bae Google and clinging on to Microsoft's 'solutions'

Airbus won't eradicate Microsoft Office from its entire user base after all it seems: the Defence, Space and Helicopters units will retain the on-premises version due to the "legal and national security implications" of storing sensitive data in the cloud. As revealed by The Register on 14 March, Airbus will start shifting its …

Silver badge

La-La-Land

So... how do you prevent leaks of restricted from on-prem to cloud while permitting the movement of material which is legally allowed to cross the boundary.

The complexity of that alone should defeat any gains from cloudifying.

26
3
Silver badge

Re: La-La-Land

E-mail sounds like a likely vector. But then this is probably already the case…

7
0
TRT
Silver badge

Re: La-La-Land

And you can't bring cloud on-prem?

9
0
Silver badge

Re: La-La-Land

The quotes sound like they're selling this much too hard internally. More Google Cool Aid, or next-job-itis?

6
0
Anonymous Coward

"And you can't bring cloud on-prem?"

Not with Google.

9
1
Bronze badge

Re: La-La-Land

And you can't bring cloud on-prem?

They could, just not with G Suite. They could build an in-house OwnCloud setup, and run the cloud-enabled version of LibreOffice under it. Mail and chat, well that's probably workable too, just don't know much about it (if Ignatious were here he'd probably make some plug for CitadelUX).

2
2
Anonymous Coward

Re: Presumably Airbus have quite a strict document classification system?

As in try to work on a restricted document that either i) you have no permission to access or ii) outside of specific premises (or even closed off network within premises) and you’re out? The only attack vector for Airbus’s most sensitive material should really be spiked patches. Of course, if they really want to keep such data safe, they could always follow George RR Martin’s approach and use a computer too bloody old for t’internet (and Wordstar).

2
0
Anonymous Coward

It's not that we hate Microsoft, it's Microsoft hates its Windows and Office users!

They hate users so much, they slurp all the data they can get, they try harder and harder, and even then the backslash is little and en mass people still use them.

Maybe we should make it not that hard for them to get rid of their users. /s

12
30
Anonymous Coward

Re: It's not that we hate Microsoft, it's Microsoft hates its Windows and Office users!

"They hate users so much, they slurp all the data they can get, they try harder and harder, and even then the backslash is little and en mass people still use them."

They are amateurs at data slurping compared to Google and because of that people hate Google more.

17
5
Anonymous Coward

Re: It's not that we hate Microsoft, it's Microsoft hates its Windows and Office users!

Be that as it may.

It's Google's job to do at least some slurping for the business model as an advertiser and giving away lots of "free" features.

Microsoft however is not supposed to be an advertiser, it has no obvious business model to slurp or watch my online behaviours and therefore should not be doing so. That is supposed to be one of the benefits of paying arm+leg for their "services".

10
5
Anonymous Coward

"Microsoft however is not supposed to be an advertiser"

Unluckily, Microsoft *was* not supposed to be an advertiser - Satan Nadella changed course, and decide MS has to go after the slurping business model of Google, although they're still amateurs for lack of experience and skills in slurping operations, more even so in the marketing side to make you believe they slurp in your own interest.

IMHO, it was utterly silly to move towards slurping operations, because they removed one advantage they had over Google. Letting customers to decide if the wanted to run on-site IT operations or offload them to cloud services (or even a mix of two) depending on actual needs would have been more appealing.

But it looks Nadella is able only to try to copy someone else's successful business, be it Google slurping, Amazon cloud, or Apple app store.

12
4
Anonymous Coward

Re: It's Google's job

The AC Google apologist in full effect, as usual.

It's Google's job to spy on us so it's ok. MS are doing the same thing but they are evil. Do you even believe this shit yourself?

14
7
Anonymous Coward

Re: It's not that we hate Microsoft, it's Microsoft hates its Windows and Office users!

"Microsoft however is not supposed to be an advertiser, it has no obvious business model to slurp or watch my online behaviours"

You are mistaken:

https://advertise.bingads.microsoft.com/en-us

1
2
Anonymous Coward

Re: Do you even believe this shit yourself?

Not really, but it's quite lucrative!

2
1

This post has been deleted by its author

Anonymous Coward

Re: Corporate Windows 10 versions don't have Slurp capability

Course they don't!

4
4
Anonymous Coward

Re: Corporate Windows 10 versions don't have Slurp capability

"Course they don't!"

See http://www.hipaaone.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/HIPAA-Compliance-Microsoft-Windows-10.pdf

There is some capability but it's set to base / minimal by default.

1
0
Anonymous Coward

Re: "Microsoft however is not supposed to be an advertiser"

"IMHO, it was utterly silly to move towards slurping operations, because they removed one advantage they had over Google. Letting customers to decide if the wanted to run on-site IT operations or offload them to cloud services..."

Microsoft doesn't slurp their business customers, only consumers. For instance Corporate Windows 10 versions don't have Slurp capability enabled by default.

0
3
Anonymous Coward

Re: It's Google's job

> It's Google's job to spy on us so it's ok. MS are doing the same thing but they are evil.

Microsoft being evil is independent of whether they spy or advertise.

4
3
Silver badge
Trollface

Re: "Microsoft however is not supposed to be an advertiser"

"But it looks Nadella is able only to try to copy someone else's successful business, be it Google slurping, Amazon cloud, or Apple app store."

So - come back Monkey Boy, all is forgiven?

At least he was a barrel of laughs in comparison.

1
0
Silver badge
Devil

Re: "Microsoft however is not supposed to be an advertiser"

"Microsoft doesn't slurp their business customers, only consumers. For instance Corporate Windows 10 versions don't have Slurp capability enabled by default."

Yet.

As far as we know.

1
1
Silver badge

Re: "Microsoft however is not supposed to be an advertiser"

"For instance Corporate Windows 10 versions don't have Slurp capability enabled by default."

As far as you can tell...

0
1
Silver badge
Black Helicopters

Data leaks

I wonder how long it'll be until someone send/saves something confidential through the Google suite instead of the on-prem MS Office. I suspect a low number of days...

Seems appropriate for Airbus -->

14
4
Silver badge

Re: Data leaks

Apart from e-mail, and this is already a risk, I suspect this is probably something that can be monitored relatively well. At least you'd hope so given the implications and penalties: not just finanical but also time in the chokey.

2
1
Anonymous Coward

"At least you'd hope so given the implications and penalties"

Maybe, but it could be too late...

1
0
Silver badge

Re: "At least you'd hope so given the implications and penalties"

Email already makes it incredibly easy to accidentally send confidential info off premises and directly to the wrong people.

I've had confidential info sent to me by customers and suppliers by accident more than once. Luckily nothing particularly sensitive or subject to GDPR, yet...

Outlook (among others) makes it quite difficult to realise the mistake, by hiding the actual email address chosen by autocomplete.

It's far more difficult to do that with something like G Suite, you have to explicitly copypaste the secrets, rather than just use the wrong "To" address.

3
0
Silver badge

Re: "At least you'd hope so given the implications and penalties"

"Email already makes it incredibly easy to accidentally send confidential info off premises and directly to the wrong people"

On a recent MoD contract we had our mail server set up to bounce any external emails back unless we put a specific string at the start of the subject.

Think along the lines of [EXTERNAL EMAIL AUTHORISED]

Without that our emails wouldn't make it out of the company.

4
0

Regardless of which platform you prefer, these kind of half measures will end up bringing the worst of both worlds. It _will_ make collaboration more difficult and information that shouldn't be in g-cloud will almost certainly leak into it.

And several someones on the side that's intending to move to g cloud will throw tantrums about the change being forced on them and will claim (rightly or wrongly) to have several MS office-specific processes they rely on, a vital macro or template or suchlike.

17
0
Silver badge

rely on, a vital macro or template or suchlike.

Or some dept is running a vital business function from some morbidly obese excel sheet....

14
1
Silver badge

Sorry, Microsoft haters: Airbus isn't entirely dumping Office

Hardly an hallelujah moment since they are switch to Google...

Perhaps also apologise to Google haters...Why should they be left out?

5
3
Anonymous Coward

"Hardly an hallelujah moment since they are switch to Google..."

As many have pointed out of other threads, GS is in general a vastly inferior solution compared to O365 and - as Airbus has clearly stated - they are only deploying GS to shake things up a bit.

Airbus will still be needing MS Office for circa half their users whatever. Hence they will likely drop GS after a few years once the impact has been achieved and once it's many limitations become apparent - it will after all be an obvious cost saving for the next CFO! It will be another Munich - something that sounded a good idea at the time but was crap in practice and eventually Microsoft's superior product suite capabilities and integration will win out.

11
17
Silver badge

Says an AC. Troll or astroturfer ? Make of it what you will.

"It will be another Munich - something that sounded a good idea at the time and worked well in practice but eventually Microsoft's superior marketing suite abilities and bribes will win out."

FTFY

9
9

"GS is in general a vastly inferior solution compared to O365" in your opinion.

Lots of other people feel the exact opposite.

I've tried both and think GS is far superior to O365 as a collaboration suite and raises productivity because of that.

6
5
Silver badge

re: GS is far superior to O365 as a collaboration suite

And as Office apps? Which is best in that respect?

3
0
Anonymous Coward

"I've tried both and think GS is far superior to O365 as a collaboration suite and raises productivity because of that."

I have both now. They are roughly equivalent for shared editing type collaboration but the O365 unified comms and meeting collaboration is away ahead. Gsuite is as a general office suite and an enterprise product not in the same league as O365. Its limited and awful in many aspects.

2
1
Silver badge

hallelujah

As many have pointed out of other threads,

Excellent points up to 'superior' then disbelief set in, dance with fairies from then...

The 'hardly a halelujah' was for switching from MS to Google - not exactly a leap into enlightenment - Googles office solution seems too minimal and MS office has always included too, offering way too many attack surfaces and encouraging users to over-depend on it.

1
3
Silver badge

> Says an AC. Troll or astroturfer ?

Most likely it was RICHTO/TheVogon yet again.

1
1
Silver badge

Perhaps this is just a ploy to get MS to lower the price per seat?

0
0
Anonymous Coward

"but eventually Microsoft's superior marketing suite abilities and bribes will win out."

Versus Google - the most evil of companies?!

0
0
Anonymous Coward

>>Lots of other people feel the exact opposite.

>>I've tried both and think GS is far superior to O365 as a collaboration suite

It's an office software suite. Collaboration is a small part of what it does. And these days it really isn't any better at that - in fact O365 is ahead on collaboration in several ways. But anyway, the point is that as an office suite there simply is no contest - O365 is miles ahead.

0
0
Silver badge
WTF?

Dual systems

As several have already commented, having systems with access to both "secure" and insecure infrastructure is going to cause leakage into the cloud from day 1.

Unless, of course, they are running a secure operating system which will allow you to move documents up a classification (Google to Windows) but not the other way. Even with copy and paste.

This is looking like a two part process. After about a year it will be obvious that everything is in the cloud even though it shouldn't be. Cue a "that was then and this is now" moment with a push to ditch Office.

Concerning that they say that this is part of a strategy to change user behaviour. What can users not do under Google that they can do in Office? First obvious thing is massive complex spreadsheets. Perhaps they hope to stop new ones being developed. I can't see them prising Excel from the cold dead hands of those with mission critical spreadsheets; at least, not without an enormous development team to reimplement them. Non-trivial. Just look at the UK Government IT failures trying to replace old, complex systems which are continually evolving.

3
0

Re: New???

Typically classified and unclassified are separated by air gapped networks. Potentially with 2 stations on the same desk.

If that wasn't the case now, and say you wrote to either the classified or unclassified CIFS / Sharepoint then you'd have the same sort of mixups now...

Spreadsheets are rarely *that* complex, and if they are, probably only a fraction of the people need office licenses to keep using them. FWIW the javascript scripting under google is pretty powerful and generally more usable than macros under office.

6
2
Anonymous Coward

Re: New???

>>Typically classified and unclassified are separated by air gapped networks. Potentially with 2 stations on the same desk.

Good luck looking at Google Suite documents on a proper air gapped network. This is a major failing of Google Suite - it doesn't have the DRM and encryption management features of Microsoft Office. There is no secure format to send documents around in. The best you can do is forward an ACL controlled URL pointing at the internet. Which obviously doesn't work on a secure network.

4
3
Silver badge

Re: New???

Good thing to purge them, really.

If they were written by someone halfway competent, they wouldn't be in a language built for quick what-if hacks by keyboard warriors.

If they're that business-critical, leaving them as undocumented piles of excelment that can't even be maintained by their users (their authors having long fallen to the Peter Principle) is a recipe for disaster.

3
3
Silver badge

Re: If they were written by someone halfway competent

the language would be irrelevant as they'd be clear to read and maintain.

A bad workman and all that.....

0
0

Re: New???

Air gap would be required for Secret - but not for Official

2
0
Anonymous Coward

Re: Dual systems

"What can users not do under Google that they can do in Office? "

Integrate with local business software / data sources ? Run Addins? Create documents that look the same to external recipients? Pivot tables? Power BI? Enterprise Telephony ? Advanced Threat management? Script based user account attribute changes? Privileged Identity Management? etc. etc. etc. etc.

1
0
Silver badge

Re: New???

> Spreadsheets are rarely *that* complex, and if they are, ..

If they are then it is the _wrong_ tool for the job.

0
0
Silver badge
Go

Re: New??? @ Adrain 4

+1 for excelment!

1
1
Silver badge

G Suite in a box?

Could Google provide G suite servers 'in a box' and Airbus have it's own on premises localised cloud storage? For a large company with many 'seats', this might work if they are sure that G Suite provides compelling advantages over the Microsoft offerings.

Goggle would not be selling G Suite software, just allowing the relocation of an image of it to suit a major customer with no deep level access by the customer.

4
1

Page:

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Forums

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2018