UpSlide is an Add-in to Excel, Word and PowerPoint. It helps finance professionals build on-brand documents faster. This page introduces all IT aspects of UpSlide deployment and points towards all the necessary resources should you need more information.
Deployment and installation
UpSlide is an add-in to the Microsoft Office applications: Excel, PowerPoint and Word. It needs the two below prerequisites:
- VSTO: Visual Studio Tools for Office, which you can install from Microsoft’s website
- .Net Framework v4.7
- Microsoft Vista, 7, 8, or 10 (x32 or x64)
- Microsoft Office 2013, Office 2016, Office 2019, Office 365
UpSlide can be deployed like any windows software, using a .exe or .msi file. All information regarding the deployment is available in the below articles:
UpSlide does not store any data outside of your network apart from the personal user data necessary for licensing and usage statistics (and even that is optional. See next section).
UpSlide gives direct access to a library of centrally managed assets (slides, images, charts, workbooks) stored within your network or your SharePoint tenant. There is also a local copy of these assets on each machine for offline work.
You can find a diagram of our architecture in this article.
Communication with UpSlide server
UpSlide can function without any contact with our servers and even without any internet access. However, we recommend that you let UpSlide communicate with our servers to:
- Activate the software (upon first starting MS Office).
- Retrieve the software settings (most notably the location of the UpSlide content library within your network).
- Download software updates.
- Gather usage statistics summarised in a dashboard to give you a clear picture of the ROI of your investment in UpSlide.
This page describes in detail the nature of the exchange with our servers. In short, UpSlide sends the user's email to our server, and the user receives either a license code, a settings file or an update package.
It is entirely possible to block the communication with no impact on users, but please note that this will involve significant maintenance work for the IT team.
What happens if communication is blocked?
At first start, UpSlide retrieves the user email and sends it to our server. If the user is referenced in our database (see provisioning section below), UpSlide will be activated automatically.
Suppose communication is blocked, UpSlide reverts to a manual process. Users have to log in to our website and receive an automated email with a license code to paste in the UpSlide activation window.
If there is no internet connection, we can provide a universal license code. However, this method causes significant issues:
- You need to deploy the license code to each machine.
- You won't be able to monitor the exact usage of UpSlide and adjust the license number.
- Every year you will have to redeploy a new license to each user, or they won't be able to use UpSlide anymore.
UpSlide can deploy default settings with the setup. If you have different teams with different settings or if any change is needed (like the Library path, for example), you will have to deploy configuration files to every machine.
We highly recommend activating auto-update because Office is evolving, and we regularly deliver new features. We recommend updating UpSlide as frequently as you update Office.
Without auto-update, you will have to redeploy a new setup to all users if any issue arises. You can also request an update package (i.e. a zip file), which UpSlide will use to update itself when found on your network.
Note that our auto-update system is flexible and can be customised to fit your roll-out processes. For example, you could decide to have only a small set of users updating automatically while the rest of your users will stay on the same version until you are ready to upgrade them. Upgrading those users will be done in one click using our license management platform.
With these statistics, we conduct periodic business reviews where we go over the actual usage of UpSlide. Without this system, you'll have a more challenging time estimating the return on investment of UpSlide.
Personal data hosting
UpSlide collects personal user data such as Email and Name for Licensing purpose. We store this data on Microsoft Cloud Azure (West-Europe) Servers.
This page describes in detail the security of our servers.
Setting up libraries
The UpSlide content library offers easy access to up-to-date content (corporate slides, logos, bios, etc.) and graphical elements (layouts, tables, icons, etc.) directly within PowerPoint, Excel and Word.
This page describes in detail how our library works.
In short, you will need to set up either a SharePoint site or network storage. UpSlide will use this location to store content and settings. Some users will push new content via the UpSlide interface, and, thanks to our built-in synchronisation system, all other users will get a local copy.
You will need to register on our server the users authorised to get an UpSlide license. You can do this provisioning in one of 3 ways below:
- Manually via our administration website (you can use a .csv file to bulk import).
- Automatically via Azure AD provisioning. If you have an Azure AD Tenant, you can easily set it up to grant an UpSlide license to any users part of a given AD group.
- Should you decide to deploy UpSlide to all of your employees, we can also set up a system where no provisioning is needed.
Our Support Team can be contacted by email directly from the UpSlide application. Our core Support team average response time is below 2 hours between 8 am and 5 pm GMT. Your dedicated account team is also available for blocking issues in other time zones (east-coast USA, Central European, Singapore).
We can also configure UpSlide to forward all support requests to your Support team. We provide a guide for Level-1 UpSlide support to assist them, and they can escalate complex issues to our team.