A Navy Reserve Sailor's Guide to Flank Speed (FS)

Flank Speed is a permanent, single Navy enterprise solution for daily work, offering a secure environment for collaboration, cloud storage for files and documents, and Microsoft Office 365 (M365) productivity tools. The entire Navy is executing an aggressive plan to transition users as quickly as possible, prioritized by network infrastructure readiness and mission requirements. The transition plan aligns with DoD strategy and meets Secretary of the Navy’s intent.

As a Navy Reserve Sailor, we need your active engagement to make our migration to Flank Speed a success.  Your NRC N6 will provide the latest updates received from Region and should be your main point of contact for all Flank Speed questions (NMCI account issues should continue to be submitted to the NMCI helpdesk). The same Navy Champion Community who assisted our Reserve collaboration efforts to the CVR environment will again support us through the upcoming migration. We are working hard to minimize the impact- the change is transformational and will require your participation. Over the coming weeks, expect updates and directions on actions required to facilitate a smooth transition to Flank Speed. 

For additional details visit the CAC enabled page on CNRFC's SharePoint site: Flank Speed - All Documents (navy.mil).

Important Update from CNRFC N6

A significant portion of the full time (TAR) and civilian workforce has been migrated.  RESFOR is evaluating of the remaining 9,000 SELRES, with Region N6 help, who will be migrated in the coming months.

Key points:   
1.     Continue to use Outlook and your current email, same as you do today. Guidance on using Flank Speed email is provided upon migration.  
2.     Your email address will change from @navy.mil to @us.navy.mil.  Email sent to your legacy account (@navy.mil) is forwarded automatically to your Flank Speed email address (@us.navy.mil). 
3.     When email is migrated, your Outlook calendar and Teams calendar synchronize. 
4.     We urge you to reduce the size of your mailbox to below 2GB to help with migration.  Recommend deleting any junk mail, sent mail and emptying your deleted items to help minimize mailbox size. 
Please be patient as the Navy makes this transition. RESFOR leadership will continue to work to improve the help desk workflow across the Enterprise. Until the current issues are resolved, users may experience significant delays.
PEO Digital Help Desk Escalation Process:
1) Contact existing network service desk to ensure supporting components i.e., end user device, network/transport components, CVR, NEO 365, etc., are not the source of the issue. Existing network service desks are:
•  NMCI –1-866-843-6624; https://www.homeport.navy.mil/
•  ONENet–Far East: DSN: 315.243.3883; Comm: 011-81-816-3883 - servicedesk@fe.navy.mil
•  Middle East: DSN: 318-439-6287; Comm: +011-973-1785-6287 - servicedesk@me.navy.mil
•  Europe: DSN: 314-626-4357; Comm: 39.081.568.4357 - servicedesk@eu.navy.mil
•  18 In-Scope Networks – various
•  Existing Network Service Desk will submit user ticket information via email template


Q:           When will I migrate?
A:            Very soon! About 95% of users are fully migrated. RESFOR is evaluating the remaining 9,000 SELRES, with Region N6 help, who will be migrated in the coming months. Minimum requirements to migrate are an active NMCI account and be PIV-aligned. You will receive an email prior to your migration.
Q:           How will I know when I’m migrated?
A:            Users will receive a notification email the week prior to migration. Once migrated, users’ Outlook email will reflect the Flank Speed domain (us.navy.mil). If NMCI webmail is giving you an error (e.g. ‘mailbox not found’), your mailbox is on https://portal.apps.mil. Add it to your bookmarks!
Q:           What can I do to be proactive before migrating?
A:            We recommend backing up important files and reducing your inbox size as much as possible by archiving emails. Larger inboxes have greater risk of failing migration. Once complete, each user will have 100GB of space.
Q:           Will I still have access to my old emails?
A:            Old emails in your inbox will automatically move over; we advise users to archive any important emails file prior to migration for added confidence.
Q:           I have a mail.mil account that I need to operate with my gaining command. Can I have both accounts?
A:            No – one account per CAC. Each Sailor must choose which account to maintain (as each carries a cost to the government). This is known as an “existing entitlement”. The right answer for you is likely to maintain the account needed to be ready for your mobilization billet.
Q:           I am a SELRES and a government civilian (or contractor). Can I have two accounts?
A:            Yes – you will have one account for each CAC. Each has a unique PIV certificate that tells the system if it’s SELRES you or civilian you. The two accounts are not connected in terms of shared email or files. The account associated with each CAC may be a Flank Speed account or another domain provided there is only one account per CAC.
Q:           Are all Navy systems (DEERS, NSIPS, etc.) reflecting users’ Flank Speed migration?
A:            Navy systems should reflect what is in the Global Address List (GAL) and DEERS but not every system pulls from the GAL and some rely on manual user update. N6 advises users to ensure their DEERS email is accurate and the GAL is accurate as well. You can check and update your DEERS and GAL profiles via the ID Card Office Online at https://idco.dmdc.osd.mil/idco/ .
Q:           When will share drives (e.g., S:\) migrate to SharePoint Online?
A:            We expect SharePoint Online (SPO) to be operational in FY23. Some AC commands are in the process of moving to SPO now while others will migrate over the next year.
Using Flank Speed

Q:           What can I do with Flank Speed on my personal computer?
A: We have introduced Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD) to all SELRES. Nautilus is a Navy Flank Speed service using Microsoft’s AVD technology for users who do not have continual access to NMCI, government-furnished equipment (GFE), or prefer to use their Bring Your Own Device (BYOD). Additionally, AVD enables work-from-anywhere capability. If you are interested in AVD, you can sign up by emailing avd@us.navy.mil from your Flank Speed email.

A: If you are not interested in AVD, this is still the greatest advance in Flank Speed – authentication does not pass through the Navy’s networks, you connect to the Flank Speed cloud directly from commercial Internet. With a CAC reader attached to your personal computer, you will be able to edit Office documents, join Teams meetings, and leverage other new M365 apps, all on portal.apps.mil, the DoD M365 web portal. Once you have set up your OneDrive (cloud storage) from an NMCI machine, files will sync from your account to the portal interface and you’ll always have your files at your fingertips. Flank Speed is built on the security premise of ‘zero trust’, which assumes that every system is compromised. Because of this model, downloads are not permitted on any interface unless it is government-furnished equipment (GFE).

Q: What is Azure Virtual Desktop and how can I sign up?
A: Nautilus is a Navy Flank Speed service using Microsoft’s AVD technology for users who do not have continual access to NMCI, government furnished equipment (GFE) or prefer to use their Bring Your Own Device (BYOD). Additionally, AVD enables work from anywhere capability. To volunteer, simply send an email to avd@us.navy.mil from your Flank Speed email, and we will do the rest! Initial AVD setup DOES require one-time access to an NMCI computer or GFE.

Q: What happens next after signing up for AVD?
A: Once approved, you will receive a welcome/onboarding email from the AVD Team with detailed information to setup access. Additional support will be provided on the Teams Reserve Component (RC) AVD Support channel.

Q:           My supported command is on another DOD tenant, mail.mil.  How can I collaborate with them?
A:            Your supported command can add your Flank Speed account as a Guest to their Teams.  As a DOD Guest, you can do join in chats, meetings, edit files, and share screens.  You can also join a meeting as an anonymous Guest simply by clicking on the Teams meeting link.  Anonymous Guest can temporarily join in the meeting video, audio and chat, but does not have access to files.  DOD and Microsoft are working on a federated solution where all DOD tenants will be able to collaborate seamlessly, targeted for FY23.

Q:           Digital Signatures: How do we digitally sign documents if we can’t download them?
A:            If you absolutely need to download a document for purposes such as digital signature with Adobe Acrobat, DoD SAFE is an approved file transfer method. PEO Digital is exploring solutions for digital signature including third-party app integration and Microsoft DocuSign. We expect an integrated digital signature solution soon.
Q:           Encryption: How can we read or send encrypted emails without government furnished equipment (GFE)?
A:            PEO Digital is working on a replacement for S/MIME encryption. Until that replacement is integrated, N6 advises Reservists to use R2S to read and send encrypted emails if they do not have access to GFE. R2S works with Flank Speed accounts. Another option is to use AVD. Although password and Microsoft Authenticator are only required to log into AVD, you will still need to use your CAC to read or send encrypted emails.
Q:           What is the process to digitally sign and encrypt email?
A:            If users are on government furnished equipment (GFE), digital signature and encryption work the same as always. Users may need to send a digitally signed email to the recipient prior to an encrypted email to ensure the recipient has the sender’s certificate associated with their FS account. If the user does not have access to GFE, N6 recommends using AVD or R2S for encrypted emails.
Q:           My NMCI emails automatically go to my FS email. I can no longer send from my old NMCI but I receive emails sent to that address. Is this a temporary thing during the transition or will auto-forwarding eventually stop?
A:            Legacy NMCI emails will auto-forward from until your legacy NMCI account is deleted for not logging in within 180 days (SELRES account disablement/deletion policy) or until Navy entirely divests of NMCI.
Q:           Can users migrate .pst files to Flank Speed?
A:            Users can load .pst files to their Flank Speed profile via the Outlook desktop client. Once the .pst file is loaded via the desktop client, it will sync to the cloud and be available via the FS Outlook web app. However, policy precludes .pst storage on OneDrive. N6 recommends users save their .pst file(s) to their personal (e.g., H:\) drive and load them to their FS Outlook account via that location.
Account Currency

Q:           Does Portal.apps.mil reset my NMCI last log-in date?
A:            Not currently. However, Navy Reserve Sailors are exempt from the NMCI NIPRNet periodicity login requirement, effective immediately. This exception to policy only applies to NMCI NIPRNET and is valid up until March 2023 while a solution is developed to allow Flank Speed log on to satisfy the requirement. Please continue to use the collaborative tools in Flank Speed by taking advantage of the ability to into https://portal.apps.mil/default.aspx
Q:           How do I have to access this account (in simplest terms) so that it isn’t eliminated, and how often?
A:            An exception to policy was signed on 3 October 2022, exempting all Navy Reserve Sailors from the NMCI NIPRNET periodicity login requirement. This exception to policy only applies to NMCI NIPRNET and is valid up until March 2023 while a solution is developed to allow Flank Speed log on to satisfy the requirement.
Q:           Does logging into email via the R2S app count as an NMCI login?
A:            Logging into R2S still counts as logging into NMCI for account currency.

FS Capabilities

  • *** UPDATE ***  Flank Speed users who would like to join a meeting as a guest on their iPhone may do so via the Teams App. On an Android, the meeting can be accessed via browser.  More information about Flank Speed can be found in the CNRFC N6 Customer Support Page at: Customer Support Center (navy.mil) Please see guide below and refer any more specific questions to your local IT Help Desk.
  • Flank Speed accommodates the use of DOD Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI) and National Security Systems information, to include PII and HIPPA.
  • When connected directly from the Internet, the use of Flank Speed, whether via Government Furnished Equipment (GFE) or personal desktops/laptops, will require CAC authentication and the use of a web browser — data downloads will not be allowed.
  • GFE connected to the NIPRNET, whether from the office or through a Virtual Private Network, will have full application functionality.
  • The ability to invite guests to participate in Teams meetings will be limited to Internal DoD users. Non-DoD guest participation is under development.
  • Audio conference capability is scheduled to be available by September 2021. When authorized by DoD, Navy will enable personal cell phones, tablets, or desktops/laptops access to Flank Speed directly from the Internet. The Navy will also continue to work with DoD and Microsoft to allow non-DoD partners to participate in Teams. During this transition period, it will be important to leverage legacy collaboration capabilities to minimize collaboration gaps, such as teleconference bridges for teleconferences with non-DoD partners.
  • Audio conference capability is now authorized by DoD. The Navy has enabled personal cell phones, tablets, or desktops/laptops access to Flank Speed directly from the Internet. The Navy will also continue to work with DoD and Microsoft to allow non-DoD partners to participate in Teams.