change sharepoint site url

Change SharePoint site URL from the initial domain to a different domain with a PowerShell Script

So here’s the scenario.

One of our UK Based MSP partners had signed up with an end customer who had an M365 tenant with a name that wasn’t needed anymore.

We’ll get it straight…

Let’s assume 4 partners together opened up a firm and the domain name was with the initial of all these four people. Out of the four, 2 have withdrawn their stake from the company and so they are now left with a domain name that has the initials of them all. It doesn’t make sense right?

They did change the name of their organization, but a domain name is something that can’t be changed just like that. Especially when a lot of users are already present in the tenant.

They kept on adding users and services in that tenant, and it just made it more difficult to change the domain name. And because of that, it was not possible to delete that tenant and create a new one too.

We got a request from our MSP Client where we were asked if could specifically change the initial domain name for the SharePoint sites.

This scenario could be common for many since companies do undergo rebranding, mergers, acquisitions or a split.

The only point to be noted here is that we can perform this domain change procedure for SharePoint and OneDrive URLs only.

Ensure that the URL is not taken. Make sure it is available.

P.N. As we are white-labelled service providers, we cannot disclose the names of our MSP Clients or their end customers unless they have given us permission to do so. Hence the names we have used for this blog are only for example purposes. These are not real names.

First Step to change Sharepoint site URL:

In our first attempt to rename the added initial domain, we realized that it was not possible to change or modify it as M365 didn’t permit that.

Here’s a step-by-step procedure of how we went ahead with the same.

WARNING: Make sure you’ve carefully read about the SPO Tenant rename and understand its impact on your organization https://aka.ms/SPOTenantRename.

Here’s how we changed the domain name on SharePoint and OneDrive:

Goal: To add the domain name suggested by the end-user

Let’s assume that the end customer name is “LANJABIL”, consisting of the initials of all 4 founders of the organization. The first two founders (L.A. and N.J.) have left, and now we are left with (A.B. and I.L.).

  • We navigated to https://aka.ms/SPORenameAddDomain with the Global administrator account and then some of the PowerShell modules needed to be installed.
    • Install-Module -Name Microsoft.Online.SharePoint.PowerShell
  • Then we will have to connect PowerShell to the SharePoint site with the global administrator account and need to enter the SharePoint site address which needs to change. In our case it is

“LANJABILLimited-admin.sharepoint.com”

  • Connect-SPOService -Url https://lanjabillimited-admin.sharepoint.com
  • Then we require to run the command which will make changes to the default URL and it will change it to the new requested URL
    • Start-SPOTenantRename -DomainName “ABILlimited” -ScheduledDateTime “2022-04-26T21:58:00”
    • Note:- I have already added this domain to the M365 account and have got it verified as well, the scheduled time should be more than 24 hours from your Device time.
  • After that, it will take 24 hours to propagate the changes to all SharePoint sites.
  • I have added a screenshot for the Reference
    • GUI reference in the SharePoint
    • First, it was showing this URL as displayed in the below picture.
change-sharepoint-site-url
  • After Running the PowerShell script and waiting for 24 hours, the new link has appeared
  • PowerShell reference screenshot:-

Points to remember: –

  • This change affects only SharePoint and OneDrive URLs. It doesn’t mean that the name would change in email addresses.
  • If you have set up multi-geo, this feature cannot be enabled for your organization
  • You can only rename your SharePoint domain once every six months
  • Once you change your SharePoint domain you cannot go back to the original name
  • If you have deleted any of the SharePoint sites, it cannot be restored after the change. So before you make the change, ensure to check the sites that you have deleted and if you want to restore any of those.
  • Check if Before changing your domain name, review any sites and OneDrive accounts that have been locked to determine if the lock should be removed

Frequently Asked Questions

How to set up a SharePoint Site?

Visit the SharePoint website and click on +Create Site. Enter the type of site you want to have, give a name to it, edit the site name etc. And voila! You have a SharePoint Site ready. You can only create a site if you have global admin access or if you have the permission to create subsites.

What is a SharePoint Hub Site?

As the name suggests, it is a centralised hub that allows an organization to connect and organize different SharePoint sites. A hub where different sites (Could be team-wise, region wise or project wise) are shown at once so that it is easier to discover related content and be able to apply branding and a common site structure across all associated sites, at once.

How do I change a SharePoint site from private to public?

Go to your SharePoint Online Site and then go to the Settings Gear, under that click on Site Info and there you have the Privacy Settings option to make your site public or private.

How to backup a SharePoint site?

Go to SharePoint, and choose the site you want to take the backup of, go to Documents and then click on the Sync. When you click on sync, the documents get saved to your OneDrive and desktop. But with the sync, any change that you make to the SharePoint file, it’ll be reflected on the desktop file as well.

What is a SharePoint Communication Site?

Using a SharePoint Communication Site you can present and broadcast your news, media, reports and their status to others in a visually appealing manner.

Weekly Tech Blogs

We upload blogs on our website every week. So keep an eye on these if you want to get solutions to your tech problems.

How to configure Azure Site Recovery for Hyper-V on-premises to Azure

Before we delve into this, we’d like to give you a brief on what Azure Site Recovery is. Being in the IT Services Industry, it becomes very crucial for a Managed Service Provider (MSP) to adopt a well thought BCDR Strategy. BCDR stands for Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery. It is meant to keep your data safe and your work up and running causing minimal to no hindrances even when outages occur. You can set up and manage replication, failover, and failbacks. You can even replicate on-prem virtual machines.

Azure Recovery Services contributes to this strategy.

Site Recovery can manage replication for:

  • Azure VMs replicating between Azure regions
  • On-premises VMs, Azure Stack VMs, and physical servers

Prerequisites

Prepare on-Premises Hyper-V:

1) Review requirements and prerequisites

2) Verify your internet access. So, if you’re controlling access by an IP address, make sure that the IP address-based firewall rules can connect to Azure Datacenter IP Ranges and the HTTPS (443) port. Allow IP address ranges for the Azure region of your subscription.

3) Prepare to connect to Azure VMs after failover

We assume that you already have the following set-up in place:

  • A Recovery Services Vault in the Azure portal
  • A physical computer on which you want to install the configuration server

If TLS 1.0 is disabled on the computer where the configuration server is being deployed, make sure TLS 1.2 is enabled and that the.NET Framework version 4.6 or later is installed (with strong cryptography enabled).

Procedure:

Log in to the Azure portal

In the portal, go to the Recovery Services vaults blade and select your vault.

In the Resource menu of the vault, click Getting Started and scroll down to the Hyper-V machines to Azure section.

Click over Prepare infrastructure.

Check all the pre-requisites- network, storage, OS and other resources are all adequate.

Once the minimum requirement is tested, select the “Yes, I have done it” option in the drop-down under deployment planning.
Click on Next.

On the next tab (Source Settings), select the client_HyperVsite and move ahead to the next page.

Azure Site Recovery

The next tab is “Target Settings”. Choose the required subscription, resource group, post-failover deployment model, storage account and network suitable for the replication. Move ahead to the next page.

Select the Virtual machines for which you want to enable Replication.

The fourth tab is Replication settings, here, select the OS type, OS disk and Disks that you want to replicate.

Moving next, select the Replication Policy and finally go through the summary of all the configurations.

Once checked, click on Enable replication at the bottom of the window.

Once you have done that, check replication health, status, failover health and Active location in the Replicated items section of your selected vault.

Steps to Install the Provider on HyperV on-premise Server:

1) Run the setup file

2) Now in the Azure Site Recovery Setup wizard, go to Microsoft Update. Opt in to use Microsoft Update to check for any Provider updates

3) Accept the default installation location for the Provider and Agent in Installation, and then click Install.

4) After installation, in the Microsoft Azure Site Recovery Registration Wizard, go to Vault Settings, select Browse, and in Key File, select the vault key file that you downloaded

5) Specify the Azure Site Recovery subscription, the vault name, and the Hyper-V site to which the Hyper-V server belongs

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Hyper V?

Hyper-V is a hypervisor or a server virtualization tool that would allow one to create virtual computing environments. You can then manage and operate multiple OS from a single Physical Server.

What is the difference between Hyper-V and VMware?

Hyper-V and VMware both are hypervisors. Hyper-V is a virtualization tool from Microsoft and VMware is from VMware.
Hyper-V supports Windows and Linux whereas VMware supports Windows, Unix, Linux and macOS.
Hyper-V is suitable for smaller organizations since its cost is based on the number of cores on the host.
Whereas, VMware is suitable for larger organizations since it is billed on the number of CPUs.

How to disable Hyper-V?

Firstly, to know if your Hyper-V is active or not, type Win+R, and type msinfo32.exe and in the System Information tab that opens up, you can see if the Hyper-V is enabled/active or not.

Once you have checked that, go to the Control Panel > Programs > Programs and Features > Turn Windows features on or off

Click on the + beside Hyper-V > Hyper-V platform > uncheck the box beside Hyper-V Services

Once you do this, the Hyper-V would be disabled.

What are the benefits of Azure Site Recovery?

No need to maintain hardware
Since it’s in the cloud, it will be accessible from anywhere
The cost would be comparatively less
Deploy replication, failover, and recovery

How much does Azure Site Recovery cost?

The cost would depend upon the average number of instances that are billed.
It is also free to use for the first 31 days then it is charged at $16 and $31.

Upcoming

Infrassist uploads a new blog every week. Keep an eye on our blog section to learn more about resolutions to all your technical problems.

MDM Authority

How to Enable MDM Authority instead of Microsoft 365 Authority

Being an IT Admin, you must set MDM Authority prior to enrolling any devices for management. But if you are a tenant using the 1911 service release and later, the MDM authority is automatically set to Microsoft Intune. But what if you are unable to push apps via Intune? You need to enable MDM Authority for that. Here’s how you can do it. Here’s a real scenario of how we resolved it for one of our end customers.

I have recently started working with one of the Azure test environments and have been trying to push some applications like the ones below, to manage devices via Intune.

  • Google Chrome
  • Nitro PDF
  • Office 365 Deployment

When I download the above applications and try to push it via Intune to the managed device it’s not recognized and shows the application is still in process when I check Manage App on the device.

So how to solve this and recognize why is it not pushing the application to manage the device?

Here is how you can change the settings to easily push and manage apps via Intune.

Step 1

First, you need to login into the Azure Intune Admin console.

Step 2

Once you have logged in, select the Apps option from the left panel in the Intune Admin Portal.

Step 3

Once you click on the App option, MDM Authority is shows Microsoft 365 Authority instead of Microsoft Intune.

Microsoft 365 Authority under MDM Authority

If it shows Microsoft 365 Authority instead of Microsoft Intune, its means it offers fewer management features than Intune.

Microsoft Intune under MDM Authority

It can add Intune, a cloud-only, fully-featured MDM service, to your Office 365 MDM Authority.

Step 4

If you want to change MDM Authority from Microsoft 365 to Microsoft Intune, you need to open this link and check the Intune MDM Authority option.

Step 5

After opening the above link, you may see the below screen where it gives the option to select Intune MDM Authority. Select the option and click on add.

Step 6

Once Intune MDM Authority gets added, you can see the below screen.

Instead of Microsoft 365 Authority, now it has changed to Microsoft Intune.

Once you get this done, you’ll see that all your Intune App Policy will work fine.

Pushing applications to your managed devices will now be possible.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is MDM in O365?

MDM stands for Mobile Device Management and as the name suggests, it helps an organization manage the devices enrolled within their network. It is in-built within the Office 365 platform

What is MDM enrollment?

Enrolling devices in MDM Intune helps the organization manage the devices that are in their premise.

Can MDM track browsing history?

No. MDM cannot track browsing history but it surely can restrict certain apps and browsers.

What can Intune MDM see?

When your organization enrolls a company device under Intune MDM, they cannot see your personal information or your emails, texts, pictures, files, search history, passwords etc.
However, what they can see is your device number, the model, device IMEI, App inventory, App names etc.

Is Intune free with Office 365?

Intune is a paid subscription. It is not included in the Office 365 subscriptions and M365 Basic and Standard Subscriptions but it is available in M365 Business Premium and its Enterprise, Education and EMS range of licenses.

Upcoming

If you want to know how you can install Line of Business Apps using Intune, then make sure you read this blog right here, where we show you a step-by-step procedure of how you can do the same.

Apart from that, we keep uploading technology-related blogs every week, keep an eye out on our blog section.

Power BI

Microsoft Power BI: Read this simple explanation

Basic information of Microsoft Power BI

Power BI is like that classmate of yours, who easily understands complex concepts which no one can understand but can teach it to you in layman’s terms. 

Power BI is an interactive, data visualization platform from Microsoft. If you have worked with platforms like Tableau, you’d know what to expect and how it works. 

In Tableau, you can import large data and present it in a way that is not only visually appealing but is easy for the audience to understand. 

Similarly, Power BI does the same with the usage of AI (Artificial Intelligence).

If you are not familiar with any data visualization platform, this is how they work. Any Data visualization tool or Power BI for that matter, lets you import data, analyze, gain insights, generate reports and share it seamlessly among people within the organization. It is built on the foundation of Microsoft Excel. The tool is highly useful and handy for businesses of all sizes, whether it be a small business or a medium or large-sized business. Business analysts of the organization can use the tool to create data models and generate reports. 

You can even embed Power BI reports on your website or apps. 

Power BI can be used on the cloud and you can also download a desktop and mobile application version of it. 

Tableau is comparatively harder to learn and grasp when compared to Power BI.

Power BI has a free service, and also paid subscription services. You can create customizable dashboards so that you see an overview of insights on things that you want to be displayed. You can create reports and include graphs and charts in a way that depicts a story or helps you in the process of storytelling. You can import files and databases from multiple sources to Power BI. Files or data can be imported from – Excel, XML, PDF etc. and from databases like SQL Server databases 

Power BI comes up with monthly updates and adds something new almost every week.

Components of Power BI 

Within the platform or tool of Power BI are included multiple apps: 

Power Map: This Lets you view data in a geographical, 3-dimensional way. View your data on a globe or map. The feature is also available in Excel. 

Power Query: It helps transform data and prepares it for further use. Power Query is also a very profound tool within Excel that allows a user to import data to excel from various sources. Post which, the data can be cleaned and set for further requirements. 

Power Q&A: When you click on the “Ask your questions here” bar in the Power BI dashboard, it’ll show you pre-determined options which you can choose and generate charts. You can even pin the generated reports on the dashboard of your choice. Not only that, you can ask questions in your language. Let’s suppose you have the state-wise sale and distribution data of Unilever products. If you type in the question bar, “The top 5 products sold in Texas”, or the “least sold product in Minnesota” it will show you the answer. In simpler terms, you don’t have to go through the data and filter it and find the answers. You can also use Cortana to ask questions and gain access to charts and graphs. 

Power Pivot: Again, an excel add-in is also a part of Power BI. It is a tabular data modelling tool 

Power View: Create and view your visually beautified data  

Why you should use Power BI? 

Minimal Training Required: With minimal training and an easy learning curve, Power BI can be learnt and used by any. 

Ability to handle large data: Power BI has the power to take large numbers of data and present it in easy to understand, visually appealing charts or graphs. 

Create once, updates automatically: Create a report using the data only once and then every time you add something to the datasheet or edit something, it automatically reflects in the Power BI Report. The dashboards also get updated in real-time. Hence, you can view past data, present data and also lets you predict future patterns. 

Cortana and Power BI: You can also use Cortana to ask questions and gain access to charts and graphs. 

Easy Integration: Not only can you use Power BI with Microsoft Native products like M365 and Dynamics 365, but it also integrates well with Google Analytics, Salesforce, SAP, Mailchimp etc. 

Different Versions of Power BI 

Power BI Desktop – the free version. Could work when it comes to a small organization. You can embed and publish reports to the web, connect to more than 70 data sources and export your report to PowerPoint and Excel as well. But it doesn’t allow peer-to-peer sharing, you cannot analyze the data, you cannot embed APIs and Controls. 

Power BI Mobile – An app to be used on Mobile devices like Mobile or tablets. 

Power BI Service – This entire service is hosted on Azure. 

Power BI Pro – You get access to advanced features but it is a pay-per-user license. You can share reports and data with your peers given that they too have a Power BI License. 

Power BI Premium – Here you can get licenses as per the scale. Typically useful for larger organizations. You pay the amount for a certain amount of storage and processing capacity and then as many users can be added and they can utilize the features. This is useful for those that use the platform extensively. 

Power BI Report Server – For those that want to keep their data on-premises, instead of putting it on the cloud. 

Power BI Embedded – This gives the ability to users to embed data and reports into their own app. No need to build something of your own. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How to share Power BI report?

In Power BI, on the top bar you’ll find a Share Option. When you click on it, you’ll be prompted to enter the name of the person you want to share it with, and you can send it.

How to create a Power BI dashboard?

The visuals and charts or graphs you see on the Power BI Dashboard are known as Tiles. The dashboard is supposed to give you an overview of the most crucial details you want to see at the front. How do these tiles show up on your dashboard? You generate reports from the datasets. You’ll find a Pin shaped “Pin the visual” symbol besides a graph or chart. When you click on it, a pop-up will open up which asks you if you want to pin it to the existing dashboard or the new dashboard. That is it. Once you click on “Pin”, it’ll be pinned to the dashboard of your choice.

How to update Power BI Desktop?

First, you need to get notified everytime there’s an Update, for that, open Power BI, go to File>Options and Settings>Options>Updates>Tick the check box>Ok.
Second Step, if there are any pending updates, when you open the app, you’ll find an option in the bottom right.

How to use Power Query in Excel?

Power Query helps simplify the process of importing data from multiple sources and helps sort them in Excel to be used in the most convenient and usable format. To use it, open Excel, go to Data>Queries & Connections > Queries. You’ll get a list of queries, select the query.

What is Power Pivot?

Another Business Intelligence tool within Excel which lets you to import data from multiple sources and in millions, to an Excel Workbook. You can create relationships between heterogeneous data, build PivotTables and PivotCharts, and analyze the data for you to make timely business decisions without requiring any IT assistance.

Some other helpful resources:

Did you know that Microsoft Teams has come up with some really cool new features for the Teams Meetings? You can read this blog to know more about it. Apart from that, we upload blogs on our website every week. Keep an eye out for our blog section.

Install Virtual Android Application

Install Virtual Android application using Intune – This is how

Here is how you can install a virtual android application using Microsoft Intune. Before we dive into the topic, here are two things, which we cover in the article, that you need to be aware of.

  1. Bluestacks
  2. Intune Company Portal

And if you already know about these two, you can jump straight to Step 1.

What is BlueStacks?

You must have heard about Bluestacks already, it is a free-to-download, Android emulator. This means it lets you virtually download android applications available on Play Store, into your desktop.

What does “virtually” here mean?

It creates a replica / virtual version of an Android Mobile device on your desktop.  

While you can use BlueStacks to run almost any Android app (it’s compatible with about 97% of the apps in the Google Play Store), the app has found its largest audience with Android users who want to play mobile games on their desktop computer.

What is Intune Company Portal?

Company portal is an app that provides access to corporate apps from any network. A few prerequisites should be met such as your company must have a Microsoft Intune subscription and your account should also be set up before you begin using this app. Please ensure that you must have a work account to enroll yourself in Intune.

Why install Company Portal?

It lets you browse and install company applications

Because of it being associated with Intune, it lets you manage devices that are enrolled inyour organization and in Intune, it also lets you wipe all information from the device of an employee you may have left the organization.

Step 1: Install Bluestacks application from the below link. https://www.bluestacks.com/fr/index.html

The screen that you see below, is the Bluestacks home page.

Step 2: Login into Play Store.

Step 3: Download Intune Company Portal from Play Store.

Step 4: Once the app gets downloaded, open Company Portal and sign in with your Office 365 Credentials.

Step 5: Accept the Terms and Conditions.

Step 6: Add your device to the Company portal.

Step 7: Allow the system to sync with Microsoft Intune.

Step 8: Now login to portal.azure.com

Step 9: Select or click on Intune option

Step 10: Click on Endpoint Manager Admin Center.

Step 11: Click on Apps on your left side pane and click on Android.

Step 12: Then Download the .apk file (the executable app file) of any application of your choice. Here for example purposes, I was downloading Facebook’s .apk file.

Step 13: Go back to the Microsoft Endpoint Manager admin centre.

Step 14: Click on Add

Step 15: Select App type and choose Line of business app and then select

Step 16: Click on Select app package file and choose your .apk file which you download. And then OK.

Step 17: Give the name, FACEBOOK, in publisher and click on Next

Step 18: In Group mode click on Add group and select in which group you want to add.

Step 19: Then Review and Create the Policy.

Step 20: Check your Bluestack Homepage (shown below) and you can see your application. In my case, I Installed the Facebook application which is shown on the Homepage.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Bluestacks? Is it safe to use?

As long as you install Bluestacks through their own website, it’s safe. You should be more careful if you’re trying to install it from other 3rd party sources.

How do I deploy an app using Intune?

Intune supports a wide range of app types. If you want a detailed procedure of how you can deploy a Line-of-Business App via Intune, then check out this article.

Can Android be virtualized?

Android devices can run virtual machines and even emulate other operating systems.

What are android application types?

There are 3 types of Android apps: Native Apps, Web Apps and Hybrid Apps.
Native Apps are built for a mobile device’s operating system, irrespective of whether it is an Android or iOS. As it is Native, a native Android app cannot be used on an iOS device and an iOS device cannot be used on an Android phone.
Web Apps are accessed via a web browser. These are actually responsive websites that can mould themselves based on the device it’s been used on. Web Apps use minimal resources and hence may or may not have reduced performance.
Hybrid Apps are the offline versions of native apps. They don’t need an active internet connection for you to use them. They need much less coding and are less expensive. These apps have access to your camera, gallery, contact lists etc.

What is Company Portal used for?

It is an app that lets employees securely have access to organizational resources and simplifies the tasks you need to do for work.
Enroll your device to access corporate resources, view and manage enrolled devices and wipe them off when the employee leaves or theft takes place, single sign-on to reduce the number of sign-ins, browse and install business apps.

Conclusion

This is how you can install any Google Play Store Android application on your desktop with the help of Microsoft Intune.

If you want to know how you can install Line of Business Apps using Intune, then make sure you read this blog right here, where we show you a step-by-step procedure of how you can do the same.

Join Microsoft Teams Meeting 2022

8 latest features you need to know now before you join Microsoft Teams Meeting in 2022!

Microsoft Teams has come up with some interesting new features that will just UP the Meetings game. We had covered a similar topic months ago, where we had talked about 8 Microsoft Teams Features you were unaware of or that you need to use. That blog was focused on general features. This one is only focused on features you need to know before you join Microsoft Teams Meeting in 2022. Features that are new and will be highly useful when you’re presenting via Teams. 

We are damn sure and positive that these are only going to be more and more useful to you. 

Before you Join Microsoft Teams Meeting – Noise Suppression 

Join teams meeting

Right before you start a meeting, you can click on the gear icon (above) and a pop up will open up on the right hand side (as shown below)

You can enable or disable Noise Suppression from here.

For that, you need to go to: 

But how to set the level of Noise Suppression level. Do you want it to be highly suppressed or low? 

On your Teams App, click on the 3 dots (ellipses) on the top right side of the top bar> Click on Settings>Devices>Noise Suppression.

As seen above, you can now adjust the amount of background noise suppression you want to have. The Suppressor will only detect human voices and eliminate all possible noises. 

Play around with the levels of suppression to see for yourself on what works best for you. 

Display your video over the content screen 

Ever seen those gaming videos where the person is playing a video game and you can see it on the main screen but you can also see the gamer on a mini screen within the rectangular gaming window itself? 

Well, that’s now possible on Teams as well. 

Not just that, you have 4 types of presenter modes available now. 

During a Teams Meeting, click on the Share Screen button, then you’ll see the following options on the box that opens up… 

As seen below, 

You have 4 options like Content Only, Standout, Side-by-Side and Reporter. 

In the Standout View, your entire background would disappear and only you’ll be visible on top of the Window that your sharing. 

In the Side-by-Side Format, the viewers will be able to see the content on the left side and you on the right side. 

In the Reporter Layout, your video and the content would be displayed diagonally. 

Answer Questions in the order they are asked

Earlier during a teams Meeting, if 10 people raised a hand to ask a question, it’s difficult to remember who asked first, all you can do is randomly answer questions. 

But now, Teams has a new feature where if Person A has asked a question first and Person B was the second one to ask, the numbering would be shown beside their hand. 

Now isn’t that convenient? If you want to know about more Microsoft Teams Features that will help you ease collaborations in 2022, read this blog.

Whiteboard 

As you click on the Share Screen Button during a Teams Call, you’d see that there is now an option of Microsoft Whiteboard. 

Once you click on that, a screen like the one below will open. 

On the left pane, you’ll see options like Notes, Text, Images, Reactions, Shape, Templates and Documents.

You can explore and use all of these to collaborate the way you would, in-person. 

If you click on Template, you’ll see a bunch of categories like: 

Explore it for yourself, but as you can see, you’ll find options like the ones shown below:

Aren’t these awesome? 

You can also right texts, highlight texts, underline texts and even point at texts.

If you want the lines you draw or scribble to be straight, just hold the Shift Button down. 

Just try these out and explore for yourself. 

All in all, we think it is one awesome feature to have to enhance team collaborations and even play games virtually.

Turn on Live captions 

Whaaaaat?!?! 

Yes, just like there are Auto-generated captions in Youtube videos, now you get the same feature in a Teams Meeting as well. 

Let’s say for example, you are in a Teams Meeting and you are finding it hard to understand the English that somebody else is speaking; turn on Live Captions. 

How can you turn this feature ON? Go to the ellipses (the three dots) on the bar above. As the menu pops up, you can see the option of “Turn on live captions” in the list below. 

As you click on it, the feature will be enabled and as the person speaks, you will see the text appear below the main screen. 

You can even turn it off if you do not feel the necessity to have it.

Turning off Computer Audio

Let’s say you have shared your screen and you are playing a video. 

For the audience to be able to hear the audio that is being played, you will have to have “Computer Audio” enabled. 

You can enable and disable it before you enter the meeting, and you can also do the same when you are within the call as well. 

Go to the Share Screen option, you’ll see that there is an option of “Include Computer Audio” in it. You can enable or disable it. 

And there’s also a third way of doing it instantly. 

Once you have started sharing your screen, you need not always go to the Main Share Screen option.

The Share Screen Tool bar that appears on top, lets you switch presenter modes as well as enable or disable the computer audio. 

Disable Camera and Mic for all attendees 

This feature could be useful for many, especially Teachers. 

It may seem like a tricky situation first, like it did to us too. 

While our team was testing this out, inspite of the Organizer turning the “Mute All” option ON, participants were still able to unmute themselves. 

But the catch here is, as the option says “Mute all Attendees”. What you have in your list initially are not attendees, they were “Participants”. So first, you need to turn all participants into Attendees. 

How can you do that? 

Click on the ellipses beside the participant that you want to make an attendee. Click on the “Make an Attendee” option. 

Once you have done that, 

As you click on the “Show Participants” option and click on the three dot ellipses, you can see that you can now Disable and Enable Camera and Mic for all attendees at once. 

Here‘s how you can change participant settings in a Teams meeting.

They will not be able to enable it back until the organizer clicks on the “Allow Mic” “Allow Camera” option for specific people. 

Multi-Spotlight feature 

A feature that was launched way back in Oct 2020, has now been polished. Now the Teams Meeting Organizer can spotlight multiple people at once. 

During the Teams Meeting, just click on the ellipses on the person you want to highlight.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to create a team in Microsoft Teams?

Creating a Team in Microsoft Teams gives you the ability to chat and share files and documents with a specific set of people.
To create a team, Open Microsoft Teams > Teams (on the left pane) >Join or create a Team (bottom left side)

How to change the background in Microsoft Teams?

You can do this in 2 ways:
1) Before getting into a meeting, ensure you have turned your camera on and then you’ll see the option of “Background Filters” beside it. Once you click on it, you’ll see a bunch of options within it.
2) Change the background in Teams when the meeting is going on – for that, click the ellipses (3 dots) on the top bar, choose the “Apply background effects” option in the list and choose from the backgrounds available.

How to set up a Microsoft Teams Meeting?

To set up a Teams Meeting, Open Microsoft Teams > Calendar (on the left pane) > Meet Now/New Meeting (depending on your need). If you click on “New Meeting”, you’ll have the option to add title, add attendees, set the date and time and write a little description regarding the meeting.
Or you can simply click anywhere on the calendar and you’ll still be able to start a meeting.

How to join a Microsoft Teams Meeting?

When you have accepted a Teams Meeting invite, it gets added to your calendar. So, you need to go to the calendar option on the left side pane and look for the scheduled meeting. Besides that, you’ll see a “Join” option. Click on that and you’ll be able to join the Meeting.

How to record a Microsoft Teams meeting?

Once the meeting has begun, you can start recording it by going to the ellipses on the top bar and there you’ll find the option of “Start Recording”. Once you click on that, everyone present in the Teams Meeting will be notified saying that the “Meeting is being recorded”.

Conclusion

Microsoft has made such good use of the lockdown period that Microsoft Teams has become an inextricable part of our professional lives. You use Teams on a daily basis, but do you use it solely to communicate or arrange meetings when they can be used for so much more? Read this blog to learn about some underutilised Microsoft Teams features which will help your team ease collaboration and work more efficiently.

what is microsoft Azure

What is Microsoft Azure? A Mini-Guide to clear the clutter

What is Microsoft Azure?

You’ve surely heard about Microsoft Azure a lot. It has been the talk of the town. It would be a rare occurrence that you considered switching to the cloud and haven’t heard about Azure yet.  

Microsoft Azure is the second largest but the fastest-growing public, cloud-computing platform. Azure has more than 200 products and cloud services under its umbrella. Any cloud-computing product that could be useful to a business, can be found on the platform. It helps you digitally transform the way your business functions and operates.

Azure provides IaaS, PaaS and SaaS products. It acts as a  development, service management and hosting environment and provides data storage for hosting, managing and scaling web-apps along with computing services.

Simply put, it is an online platform that gives you ready-access to data and helps manage them on cloud.

 

Starting from the basics themselves. What is Cloud Computing? 

Using the internet to store and access your files, software and other services. It also gives you the flexibility to have extra storage space. It is easier for you to save and recover files when they are on the internet.  

So, where are the files stored when you start accessing your files and software via the cloud?

On the Datacenters which has massive remote servers – (that belong to the vendor), located around the world. In 2018, Microsoft said that Azure was available in 54 regions and that 12 new regions were being developed.

 

Where can you see the usage of Cloud Computing?

It is because of cloud computing that:

  • You are able to stream your favourite web series and videos on the internet
  • Gives you access to Machine Learning and Data Analysis
  • Create and post blogs
  • Data Storage and Backup
  • and a lot more

 

What can you do with Microsoft Azure? 

  • Build Virtual Machines 
  • Build Databases 
  • You get access to 3rd party software that is tied up with Azure 
  • Migrate and host your Apps, Servers, Databases and virtual desktops
  • Store massive amounts of data on the cloud

 

Reasons why you should migrate to Microsoft Azure Cloud- 

  • Backup & Disaster Recovery 
  • Cutting-edge technology 
  • Enhanced safety and security 
  • Scalability 
  • Cost efficiency (Pay-as-you-go Model) 

 

The benefits of switching to cloud are

  • Improving on application performance 
  • Flexibility on the working landscape 
  • Increasing cost savings 
  • High efficiency 
  • No need to buy and maintain hardware/ physical infrastructure 

 

Disadvantages of Microsoft Azure:

  • Massive Learning Curve – requires expertise
  • Management can be hectic and time-consuming

 

How to start using Azure? 

By signing up to Azure’s pay-as-you-go service available in the portal. But if you want to test waters, you can do that by signing up with a free account and you’ll receive a $200 credit to be used up to a period of 30 days. 

What can you do with the $ 200 credit?

You can use your credit to try services that aren’t there on the free list.

 

Azure Services

Azure Services are bifurcated into 21 categories, which have 600 services

AI Machine Learning Management & Governance
Analytics Media
Compute Migration
Containers Mixed Reality
Databases Mobile
Developer Tools Networking
DevOps Security
Hybrid+ Multicloud Storage
Identity Web
Integration Windows Virtual Desktop
Internet of Things

 

What is Azure Migrate?

Azure’s own Migration tool that centralizes large-scale migration for servers, databases, applications, and even virtual desktops. It streamlines discovery, assessment and migration for these workloads and extensibility to ISV partner tools that give you choice throughout your migration journey. Finally, you can also track migration progress end-to-end with Azure Migrate.

 

Azure Certifications

Here’s a generic overview of the major Azure Certifications

Fundamentals AZ – 900 Azure Fundamentals
AI – 900 Azure AI Fundamentals
Associate AZ – 104 – Azure Administrators
AZ  – 204 – Developing Solutions for Azure
AZ – 500 – Microsoft Azure Security Technologies
Expert (Solutions Architect Expert) AZ – 303 Microsoft Azure Architect Technologies
AZ – 304 Microsoft Azure Architect Design
Expert (DevOps Engineer Expert) AZ – 400 Designing and Implementing Microsoft DevOps Solutions
Specialty AZ – 120 Planning and Administering Microsoft Azure for SAP Workloads
AZ – 140 Configuring and Operating Microsoft Azure Virtual Desktop
AZ – 220  Microsoft Azure IoT Developer

If you’d like to know more about these certifications, you can visit this page from Microsoft which gives you extensive information.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Azure need you to learn to code?

You don’t need any programming skills for Azure. But you’ll need to know the fundamentals and you can learn more about it on the Microsoft Website or through online resources. But if you are looking forward to going into Developer roles, you would need to learn to code.

How long does it take to learn Azure?

How quickly you’ll be able to learn or grasp depends on your level of expertise and interest in cloud platforms and the basics of Networking. If your grasping power is good and it is your area of interest, you can finish the fundamentals course within a few days too.

Which is the best – AWS or Azure?

Although there can never be a clear cut comparison as the need of every organization is different. Azure may meet all the required needs and at the price for Company A but it might not be the same for Company B. Azure has better hybrid support when compared to AWS, but AWS has better documentation than Azure.

How do you choose between AWS and Azure? How to know which platform is right for you?

You can compare both the platforms on the features and services and their pricing models. Factors like storage, scalability, learning curve, future growth of the platform, support services, pricing, documentation etc. You’ll have to analyse based on these factors and you’ll soon reach an answer.

 

Should I certify myself in AWS or Azure?

AWS being the first entrant into the market leader amongst all other cloud platforms has more market share and popularity. Azure was launched 4 years after AWS and it is the second-largest cloud platform but also the fastest growing one. According to a research done by Indeed.com, the period between Oct 2015 and Oct 2019, shows that there was a steady increase in Job Seekers for the 3 biggest cloud platforms. But a recent report told a different story where web searches for AWS dropped by 5.5% while job seeker interest for Azure rose by 15.39%.” So the demand is slowly inclining towards Azure.

 

What can an Azure Solutions Architect do for you?

An Azure Solutions Architect from Infrassist will provide advice and guidance during the design of customer cloud solutions. The architect will help you choose the cloud service of your choice along with other service suggestions. You can expect pre-sales assistance and a strategically planned road map to execute and implement the project. They will be responsible for helping you map out a cloud computing strategy, create policies and it does the decision making for you.

What can an Azure Administrator do for you?

Once the Azure Solutions Architect helps you land on Azure Cloud, the Azure administrator would help you manage Cloud Services that range from Computing, Networking, Storage, Security and many such cloud functionalities within your Microsoft Azure Portal. The admin can help you set up Azure Virtual Machines, Virtual Desktops, Load Balancers, Application Gateways, Azure AD DS, Site Recovery & migration, Backup, a hybrid Azure AD Infrastructure and a lot more. 

How can we help you? 

The Professional Services Team at Infrassist works on cloud services and does various projects surrounding Intune MDM/MAM, SharePoint, OneDrive, Autopilot, Power BI, Power Automate and a lot more. We also help set up DLP, enable Tenant Level Features, Identity and Access Management services. We also provide Azure Solutions Architect and an Azure Administrator to help you land on the Azure Cloud Platform and help you explore expansion opportunities.

 

Upcoming

We keep uploading new blogs quite frequently on our website- keep an eye out for those.

Lastly, if you need help with more such IT Solutions, feel free to reach out to us. We’ll be happy to resolve your queries. 

 

 

7 Outlook hacks that can save your time in 2022 

If you are a working individual, there’s no escape from Outlook. Your day begins and ends with Outlook and Teams. You surely use it on a daily basis but have you tried the following hacks to make your inbox more organized or your work life less complex? 

Here are the 7 Outlook hacks that can help you increase your productivity, save time and a lot of frustration in 2022.

 

Organize your Outlook Inbox / Organize your emails: 

Did you know that you can organize your inbox in Outlook? “How?” you ask? 

1. Organize them in folders:  

If you receive emails from many clients and you want to move them to specific folders, right-click on the email and

outlook move to folder

Here, you can also create a new folder

outlook create new folder

In case you want to permanently move the emails to that folder every time, you can create rules and configure the settings accordingly.

2. Flagging:

You can flag an email, to remind you of when to follow up. You can flag an email to remind you whether you need to follow-up today, tomorrow, this week or the week after. You can even set a custom date. And as you complete the task, you can insert a check mark against it.

As you open Outlook, under the Home tab, when you click on an email, you can flag it as per need.

3. Rules help:

Let’s say you deal with multiple clients and you get emails from them frequently. It can be daunting to filter and find the email that you’re looking for. Setting rules so that emails that you get from them get categorized accordingly, surely helps. You can definitely apply filters and look for an email but if they are in folders, work-life is a lot less complicated.

outlook rules

As you can see in the image file above, you can filter and set rules according to – who you are receiving from,  what the subject contains, set a sound effect for emails you receive from that specific recipient and you can set a rule so that the mail automatically categorizes itself into a folder.

If you have ever found that your Outlook rules are not working, then read this blog to know how you can resolve the issue.

 

4. The Translate feature: 

Gone are the days when you had to open a new tab to look for the translation of a mail that you’ve received in a language unknown to you. M365 makes life more convenient (yes, once again), because you can look for the translation within the email itself.  

Outlook before Translate

Before Translate

 

As seen above, the email received is in Dutch, which is known to us. As you click on the “Translate Message” option, it will get converted to the language that you have set as your preference. By default, it would translate to English.

Outlook after translate

After Translate

 

5. Recall an email:

Have you ever sent an email and realized you sent it to the wrong person, or maybe you forgot to attach a file? Or maybe after sending it you’ve realized that you mistyped or missed something and you wished you could undo your action? Well, there is certainly an option of doing that. No more blunders or fumbles or “Oh My God, I wish I hadn’t clicked on ‘Send’ yet”. 

How can you recall an email that you already sent? 

Open Outlook > Sent Items > Double Click on the email you want to retrieve (so that it opens in a new window) > On the options visible above (in the Message Tab), click on the ellipses (…)

Outlook Recall an email 

However, the success and failure of a recalled e-mail depend on quite a few factors. Read this blog, to know what those are

P.S.: But there’s one thing to be noted though, you cannot recall a mail if it has been sent to some other mailboxes such as Gmail or Yahoo or Hotmail. Only if you have sent it to an email ID that is functioning in outlook would you be able to recall it. It will work only if you and the recipient have a Microsoft Exchange or an M365 email account in the same organization.  

And also note that the email will only be retrieved from the receivers’ inboxes if they haven’t yet opened the mail. 

 

6. Let outlook remind you if you forget to attach a file: 

We’ve all been there multiple times, haven’t we? That moment when you’ve sent an email and the email getting a reply saying “Maybe you forgot to attach the file”. Well, services are getting smarter. Outlook has this feature now where it would remind you if you’ve forgotten to attach a file. How? 

If in your e-mail you’ve used the word “Attachment” or “Attached” and you’ve not attached a file, Outlook would send a prompt, as below… 

 

Outlook attachment prompt

 

7. The @ function to mention someone 

As soon as you insert an @ and mention someone in an email, their name gets included in the “To” section, by default. You can manually remove it from the “To” list if not needed.

Another usage of this is, you can filter emails and see only the ones that have mentioned you.

Conclusion: 

These can save you a lot of time and effort, won’t it? A similar blog where we talk about 8 features of Microsoft Teams you wish you knew earlier, is linked here. If you want an O365 Admin who can guide you through the operations and look after all your O365 needs and make it seamless, send us a message. 

Upcoming: 

We keep uploading new blogs quite frequently on our website- keep an eye out for those.

Lastly, if you need help with more such IT Solutions, feel free to reach out to us. We’ll be happy to resolve your queries. 

 

What is Windows Autopilot

What is Windows Autopilot and the purpose it solves

Windows Autopilot is the most helpful in the scenario that we all have been in the last 2 years i.e. Work-from-home. After the initial few months, companies started recruiting again but what remained constant was working from home. Devices were handed over to the new employees in business-ready state, with all the apps and tools that the organization uses. Or if an employee leaves the organization and a transfer-of-ownership of the system has to take place. How does it all work? How is the device given to the employee in a business-ready state? What is the tool which enables that? 

Windows Autopilot is the answer. 

 

What is Windows Autopilot? 

A Zero-Touch experience for the deployment of new devices. The go-to service or method powered by M365, used to deploy new upgrades and keep the device in business-ready state. It simplifies the way devices are deployed. It helps reset and format an existing device and keep it ready for the next user that will be working on the same. 

The entire procedure of custom image files is cut short. There is no need for setting up the device from scratch; everything is automated via the cloud. Autopilot helps reduce time spent on repetitive tasks and you can see an increase in productivity. The onboarding procedure and device management would also be seamless for the organization as well as the employee.

 

What purpose does it solve? 

Configuring the latest Windows OS on new devices is a tedious process. Windows Autopilot was built to help ease the procedure for an IT Admin and buy them more time. OS Deployment used to happen earlier with SCCM, which got rebranded to Microsoft Intune. Ideally, an OS Deployment takes place by reloading OS with Custom Images for which the organization needs to maintain a large infrastructure to save WIM files of each device. 

But with Windows Autopilot, the complexity gets reduced. It automatically joins devices with Azure AD and enrols devices in Intune. 

 

How to get started? 

The IT admin of the organization or the hardware vendor has to register the Autopilot devices they acquire into Azure AD Tenant. The IT just needs to customize the setup and deployment configurations and experience for the end-user by creating an Autopilot profile. 

Post registering and configuring the Autopilot profiles, the global administrator then restricts or provides access.

Once that’s done you ship the device to the employee.

As soon as the employee receives the device, they need to turn on the device and connect to the Internet. After which they need to input the organizational credentials. The device will be recognized by the cloud, it’ll join Azure AD, enrol with the MDM Service and pushes configurations accordingly to get the device back in a fully business-ready state. It would have all the apps the organization uses and the ones that the user may need to be productive. 

 

Windows Autopilot: User-driven and Self-Deploy 

These are the 2 modes under Windows Autopilot: 

In User-driven mode, the user can configure the device provided to him/her and they can convert it into a ready-to-use state. Nowhere is there an involvement of an IT Admin, it is near to Zero Touch Provisioning procedure. The user just has to open/turn on the device, connect it to the Internet and enter. This mode is for an independent/dedicated user. 

Self-Deploy is designed to deploy Windows 10 as a Kiosk on the laptop. This mode is for shared device users. In this mode too, the user has to join Azure AD and enrol the device with an MDM and ensure every policy, certificate or app is deployed and provisioned. A TPM hardware is needed to authenticate a device into an organizations’ Azure AD. 

Reset- Bring/Reset the device back to its default settings. The OS wouldn’t get erased but everything else would. 

Format- Erasing everything on the drive, including the OS. 

Even if a device or system has started malfunctioning, at that time too, a format or reset would be necessary and all of that can be performed with the help of Intune and Autopilot. 

Microsoft Intune helps in building and pushing policies and helps deploy and manage devices and apps. Whereas what Windows Autopilot does is help to provision the device in a ready-for-business state. 

 

Conclusion: 

Windows Autopilot is another one of Microsoft’s tools to make life easier for businesses and IT Personnels’. It is certainly a tool that has the ability to cut short the time it takes to provision a device and eliminate the custom image file fuss. Provides a smooth transition if you want to make the move from the traditional legacy systems to the newer methods. As your business hires more staff in-house and remote, adapting to methods like these will be highly beneficial in the long run.

 

Upcoming:

We keep uploading new blogs every week on our website- keep an eye out for those.

Lastly, if you need help with more such IT Solutions, feel free to reach out to us. We’ll be happy to resolve your queries. 

 

dlp prevent external sharing of Teams Recording

Data Loss Prevention (DLP): Block External Sharing of Teams Recordings

Surely people are gradually getting back to their offices and meetings have started to take place in person. Just imagine, during the lockdown period, you must have conducted a bunch of meetings that had confidential things being discussed. What if the data ever gets leaked and falls into the wrong hands? What if falls in the hands of your competitors and sensitive information gets leaked and they make the move ahead of you?

You need to have a policy set in place which blocks external sharing of data and prevents data leaks. This is where something like DLP comes into play.

 

Earlier:

Microsoft Stream, launched in 2017, was the source where all Teams recordings used to get stored as soon as the meeting ended. At Ignite 2020, Microsoft had made an announcement wherein they said that now tenants can opt to use OneDrive to store the latest recordings. Then 3 months later, it was announced that all recordings will be now stored in OneDrive unless the organization chooses to continue using Stream. But in August 2021, all tenants were switched and the latest Teams meeting recordings will now be stored in OneDrive even if the organization has set to Stream.

All recordings will now be explicitly stored in OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online. As for the Microsoft Stream links, the links will be completely redirected to OneDrive and SharePoint Online.

 

Why did Microsoft move from Stream to OneDrive?

The whole idea behind Microsoft is to make everyday work seamless. Although Stream was created with the purpose of users being able to create, upload, view, store, and manage video files. The issue with Microsoft Stream was that it does not integrate well with the other M365 apps and used to get stored separately.

 

Now, what can you do to ensure that the Teams Recording stays within the organization and isn’t shared externally?

This is where Data Loss Prevention (DLP) comes into play.

 

What is DLP and how exactly does it work?

DLP detects sensitive information through deep content analysis. Even while the analysis is going on, it won’t affect the work of the people who are currently working on the content. In short, it protects confidential, sensitive data to reduce inadvertent risks and prevents users from sharing data and files with people who shouldn’t be having it. DLP Policies are stored and synced to OneDrive for Business, Exchange Online, SharePoint Online Sites etc. Once synchronized, it can block sharing of data and Teams recordings (in this scenario) with people outside the organization.

When creating policies, choose the locations to apply and then create rules where the condition is defined in the form of sensitive info types and then you can choose to encrypt the file, remove it etc.

 

How to build a DLP Policy to prevent sharing of Microsoft Teams Recordings

The rule looks for any file with the property value ProgId:Media.Meeting that is shared with someone outside the organization. The rule action blocks sharing the data or file with people external to the organization. In the below-attached image it shows what the rule conditions look like. Optionally, the rule can allow users to override the block by justifying explaining why they need to share a recording with an external person.

# Connect to Teams and update the meeting policy

Connect-MicrosoftTeams -Credential $O365Cred

# Update the Teams meeting policy for US employees so that their meeting recordings are stored in OneDrive

Set-CsTeamsMeetingPolicy -Identity “U.S. Region Workers” -RecordingStorageMode OneDriveForBusiness

 

 

A step-by-step walkthrough

  • Navigate to https://compliance.microsoft.com/homepagedlp m365 compliance centre
  • Go to Data loss Prevention on the left-hand side
  • Then Data Loss Preventiondlp create policy
  • Using a custom policy here, but one can also use templates.create custom policy
  • Add a name and descriptiondlp name your dlp policy
  • Specify the location which we want to control in this case we need to select the SharePoint site and OneDrive account and the location of the particular path.dlp choose location to apply policy
  • Define the Policy settingsdlp define policy settings
  • Create rules
  • If the user ignores the warning and goes ahead to try and share the recording anyway, they won’t be able to do this because OneDrive for Business blocks the attempt to create and send a sharing link

 

Once you’ve created the DLP Policy, it’ll take up to an hour for it to come into effect. Also keep in mind that once a meeting has ended and a recording is created, it’ll take a few minutes for the new file to get encrypted. So if somebody shares a file before the encryption is in place and shares it with any external party, it is possible for them to view it but as soon as the block is in place, the link shared previously will get nullified.

 

Pros and cons

Pros

  • Provides more visibility and greater control into Data Exchanges
  • Enforce authorization procedures before accessing sensitive data
  • You can’t copy/download and send

Cons

  • Deploying a DLP policy takes a lot of time and effort
  • You need to keep an inventory of all data
  • Require precise data flow policies
  • You need to audit the access levels of each user within your organization

 

 

Upcoming

We keep uploading new blogs every week on our website- keep an eye out for those.

Lastly, if you need help with more such IT Solutions, feel free to reach out to us. We’ll be happy to resolve your queries.