[m365weekly] #113

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Issue #113

☁️What’s on my mind

Oh yes, Microsoft knows when and how to rattle the cage. And it was rattling the cage a big way last week with the announcement of Microsoft 365 Copilot.

Since I don’t have RSS feeds going straight to my brain, I didn’t hear about Copilot until a day later, when the first partner had already asked me about pricing (there’s no price tag for it, yet).

And I immediately went digging for details.

Wow, how quickly it all happened. From a childish excitement about the metaverse to finally making something extremely useful, like Copilot for Microsoft 365.

I hope that this childish enthusiasm for the metaverse will now subside and that Microsoft will put all its resources into the constant development of the Copilot solution.

I read an interesting article in Axios login last week. The graph at the beginning shows how much more money is flowing into the products of generative AI projects compared to metaverse projects. Let’s hope the trend goes on.

In my humble opinion, generative AI (ChatGPT, Microsoft 365 Copilot, to name just two projects) brings much more to humanity than the metaverse projects that could easily find a place in the prophetic documentary Idiocracy (a 2006 film).

At least for me personally, it seems that a much more quickly written letter to a client, thanks to AI, brings much more value than a virtual suit that some high-end brand sells me in the metaverse for an obscene amount of real dollars.

What do you think? Which is more useful? Metaverse or generative AI?

Have a really nice rest of the week,
Matic Z.


I have put together a few resources that have already touched on the relevance and usefulness of the Copilot service which really might be a game changer.

Introducing Microsoft 365 Copilot: your copilot for work. Something official from Microsoft.

Introducing Microsoft 365 Copilot—A whole new way to work. An official blog post that covers Copilot in more detail.

Microsoft weaves AI throughout Office. A big picture view of Axios editors.

Microsoft 365 Copilot Overview & Features. A bit less than an 8-minute-long YouTube video showing what’s coming in Copilot.


Microsoft Secure 2023 – March 28, 2023

A brand new Microsoft event for all security-curious folks out there. You can register here for free. Still, a few days to register for the event.

☁️Productivity & Modern Workplace

How to schedule a meeting in a Microsoft Teams channel. Are you tired of going back and forth in Microsoft Teams channel conversations to schedule a meeting? Do you wish there was a faster and more efficient way to get everyone on the same page? It is so simple to reply to a Teams conversation with a meeting invite, allowing others to easily RSVP, share files, and add comments all in one place. Very short but sweet video.

What is Communities in Teams? If you’re looking for a way to connect and collaborate more effectively with your group, you’ll be interested in Microsoft’s new “Communities in Teams” feature. This free version of Teams provides a centralized hub for your community’s activities, with special tools for managing membership and setting up community-specific channels. It’s specifically designed to facilitate online communities with shared interests or purposes, providing a platform for increased collaboration, knowledge sharing, networking, and community building.

7 new features in Microsoft Outlook 365. Another very informative video from Mike Tholfsen covering what’s new in Outlook for the web. You can now embed YouTube videos into your email, to name just one of the new features.

How to Delay Send in Outlook. If you frequently send sensitive emails, consider adding a delay before sending them in Outlook to allow time for corrections before they reach the recipient. This can be done by creating a rule in Outlook that defers delivery by a set number of minutes. Alternatively, you can schedule an email with Delay Delivery or disable automatic send for individual emails. Outlook Online also offers an Undo Send option with a 5 or 10-second delay


☁️ Sysadmin Stuff

Azure Active Directory Assessment (Part I). It can be challenging to maintain guidelines, such as name conventions or group and user creation, if you’re managing Azure Active Directory with multiple administrators. Additionally, app registration is enabled by default for all users, with no auditing or notifications. To better manage your Azure Active Directory, you can use Microsoft Graph API to get a detailed report about users, groups, licenses, app registrations, conditional access policies, and more. Learn to manage Azure AD the right way. [Part 2].

Simplify Transport Rule and DLP Policy Evaluation with Test-Message Cmdlet. Microsoft’s Exchange Online Test-Message cmdlet, which was temporarily disabled last year for further enhancements, is now generally available. Tenant admins can use this cmdlet to troubleshoot problems related to Exchange Transport Rules (ETR) and Unified Data Loss Prevention (DLP) rules, and to investigate any issues related to their execution.

Enable First Contact Safety Tip for Exchange Online. Microsoft has introduced the “first contact safety tip” in Office 365 anti-phishing policies to help users become more cautious when interacting with external senders. The feature warns users to be careful when they receive an email from a sender for the first time, or from a sender they don’t usually receive messages from.

Azure AD Cross Tenant Synchronisation FIRST LOOK! Microsoft Azure’s cross-tenant synchronization enables an organization to streamline intra-organization cross-tenant application access. It automates creating, updating, and deleting Azure AD B2B collaboration users across tenants, allowing users to access applications and collaborate across tenants, etc. Cross-tenant synchronization is ideal for organizations that own multiple Azure AD tenants and want to streamline intra-organization cross-tenant application access.


☁️Security & Data Governance

Practical Protection: Something Different. As the title promises, not a completely cloud related article but important none the less. VMware is under attack from cyber criminals using ransomware against vulnerable servers, with at least 3,200 being encrypted. The attacks are leveraging a remote-code execution vulnerability that was fixed in 2021. The vulnerability can be exploited against any VMware ESXi server directly exposed to the internet.

Microsoft Authenticator Lite: Streamlining Your MFA Experience. Microsoft has launched Microsoft Authenticator Lite, a new feature integrated with Microsoft 365 apps which allows users to complete multi-factor authentication requests through their native app. The feature is currently available on the Microsoft Outlook app for Android and iOS devices. By introducing Authenticator Lite, the company hopes to make it easier for Microsoft 365 users to adopt MFA.

Microsoft Teams Security Best Practices. Microsoft Teams has emerged as a crucial platform for communication and collaboration for many organizations. However, as the platform’s popularity grows, it becomes a prime target for cybercriminals, necessitating the implementation of security best practices. What security practices Teams admins can consider to boost their team’s security and mitigate potential security threats? Read on.


☁️Noteworthy (long)reads

Information Management: Why It’s Time to Change Your Approach. A survey of 300 senior information management executives has found that information in enterprises mostly remains siloed, containing duplicated records, and poses difficulty in managing access rights and permissions. This increases the risk of data privacy issues or other regulatory breaches. Let’s change the approach.

Dipping your toes in Microsoft Sentinel Automation. Microsoft Sentinel combines SIEM (Security Information and Event Management) and SOAR (Security Orchestration, Automation, and Response) functionalities to help security administrators tackle the alerts generated by various security solutions. Automating certain security processes can assist SOC analysts in effectively monitoring and addressing incidents.


DATES TO KEEP IN MIND

April 11, 2023 – Microsoft Office 2013 – End of support. You might experience performance or reliability issues if you continue to use Office 2013 with Microsoft 365 services because it will no longer be a supported client to connect to M365. MC357842 

April 11, 2023 – Exchange Server 2013 – End of support.

August 31, 2023 – Microsoft will retire Kaizala. After the retirement date, access to and support for Kaizala will be discontinued. 

October 10, 2023 – Office 2016 and Office 2019 will no longer be supported when connecting to Microsoft 365. While these versions may still be able to connect to Microsoft 365, their connections will not be supported and may experience performance or reliability issues in the future. Official documentation here.

November 15-16, 2023Microsoft Ignite 2023


☁️ Classifieds

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☁️On a Less Serious Note


☁️ Last but not least …

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