Microsoft Ignite – news, ideas and take-aways with Enfo Modern Workplace
What an Ignite 2020! Crazy in so many ways, first of all it’s free for ALL independent of location and time zone, and due to the ongoing pandemic Microsoft arranged a virtual event with sessions going on for 48 hours.
It was a challenge to keep up with everything during daytime and nighttime! Personally, I focused a bit more on modern management, Azure AD, security, and other changes for IT pros aka products such as Microsoft Endpoint Manager, Microsoft 365 Apps, Intune, Windows, Microsoft 365 Defender and more. I am so happy I have awesome colleagues that made all this much easier covering more or less all sessions at Ignite.
We all want to share we have seen and learning that we find interesting and at value for our customers! I hope you enjoy the reading (I did!) and if you want to catch up and learn more, connect with me or my colleagues – we are more than happy to share and discuss how we can help you make your business more efficient and productive
Happy and excited for all the new stuff! Mattias Fors, Technical lead and Windows Insider MVP
Microsoft focusing on accessibility for all
This evening I joined an interesting session with Mike Tholfsen speaking about how MS free learning tools can be used to support students struggling with reading/writing.
These tools can be used to support student engagement of reading and writing for users with learning differences such as dyslexia, dysgraphia, ADHD, emerging readers, or a combination of any of the broad range of unique student abilities.
The Microsoft Immersive Reader is a free tool, built in to Word, OneNote, Outlook, Office Lens, Microsoft Teams, Forms, Flipgrid, Minecraft: Education Edition and the Edge browser, that implement proven techniques to improve reading and writing for people regardless of their age or ability.
Today Microsoft announced about the General Availability of the Immersive Reader as an Azure Cognitive allowing third party apps and partners to add Immersive Reader into their products.
Immersive Reader is also coming to Outlook Desktop and the Mail app on Windows 10 in 4th quarter, 2020.
Immersive reader what a is a game changer! <3
Sarvi Glemfors, Manager of a team filled with Modern Workplace Experts
Power Virtual Agents and Teams – Build your own bot
Power Virtual Agents is now available as a preview directly from the Teams App portal. It allows all Teams users to build chatbots for free, all you need is a Teams license. Pretty cool!
It’s a completely graphical interface, no coding required, all embedded into Teams. Suggested use is to build HR bots or Service desk bots that can answer common questions from users. One nice feature that caught my attention is that you can use your already existing FAQ page and import it into your chatbot. No need to manually copy each question and answer, let Power Virtual Agents do that for you, automatically.
Once you are happy with how your bot works, publish, and share it with your team and let users interact with it.
To read more, click here.
May the virtual force be with you! Henrik Carlsson, working with Microsoft 365 solutions
Microsoft Endpoint Manager support for Virtual Clients
Looking for a way to support your VDI or WVD? Microsoft Endpoint Manager will support administrators the ability to manage Windows Virtual Desktops or third party VDI’s the same way as physical devices in the cloud portal. The feature will be available for public preview by the end of the year.
Microsoft Productivity Score
Microsoft Productivity Score gives a good insight of how your estate is experiencing from end user perspectiveIt will help your organization become more productive and get a higher end-user experience. With the integration of Endpoint Analytics to Productivity Score your get even more insights to understand and even solve software and hardware related issues in your environment, ensuring the best end-user experience.
Productivity Score will get three new categories in October.
Two is about Communication and will give you great insights in Meetings and Teamwork. Helping your organization to be inclusive and efficient in their day to day communication.
The third one is Microsoft 365 Application Health, it will focus on performance, security, and updates. Making sure your Microsoft 365 applications work as good as possible.
This will help organizations remediate common issues that stands in the way of a great end-user experience. The feature will be generally available in end of October.
Let us catch up and talk about modern management /Mikael Nordlander, Modern management specialist
News for smart, effective communication
As a Communication Specialist I work a lot with Microsoft Teams and SharePoint. The thing that really caught my eye during Ignite was the improvements of Teams integration with SharePoint, Stream and Yammer. The possibility to move fluently between apps facilitates the workday and opens for smarter ways of communicating. Soon many of us will have no reason to leave the Teams app during the day, since we now can gather all our tools in there, the intranet, social feeds, training, streams and much more!
Microsoft are also releasing new functionality in SharePoint for sharing and boosting news. With just a few clicks one you will be able to share a news article throughout an organization's SharePoint, Teams, Yammer and Outlook. With the new boost functionality, you can increase the visibility for an important news, i.e. to make sure the article will show in every employee's feed a set number of times or until the employee has opened the article.
Another big step in the right direction is the development of the search engine in Teams, and the new functionality will be released in the end of this year. The evolvement of search improves the user experience by providing better, personalized, and faster results powered by AI. Smart, right?
I’m excited! Are you? / Ebba Billström, Communication Specialist
Ignite news: Exchange
Many of our customers are still dependent of hosting all or some mailboxes on-premises. At Ignite Microsoft revealed the roadmap for Exchange ahead. Exchange server vNext will be released in H2 2021 and will turn into a subscription-based service, the same goes for SharePoint vNext and Skype for Business vNext which will be released around the same time. The good news is that if you are on Exchange server 2019 the transition will be very smooth with a simple in-place upgrade. Since Exchange 2016 is going into extended support in October 2020 it is time to start planning for upgrading your on-premises environment to Exchange 2019 as soon as possible!
Thank you Ignite 2020! Niklas Karlsson, Microsoft 365 expert
Have you ever considered getting into programming? It is not always clear where to start. Python is a beginner friendly language that offers a simple but effective approach to object-oriented programming. It is heavily utilized by giants like Facebook, Amazon Web Services, and especially Google.
Python’s simple syntax and versatility makes it an ideal language for scripting and rapid application development in many areas on most platforms. You can use it for a variety of purposes, setting up automation, apps of all varieties, blogs, social media apps, chatbots or even adventure games! It’s also great for machine learning.
You can get Python from the MS Store or from here. There are also tons of Python resources available at realpython.com, Codecadamy, GitHub, YouTube and even Twitch.
For us, it might be worth looking into for automation purposes, maybe other fields too such as apps or blogs. Not sure if it can offer us anything useful in our current deliveries that PowerShell can’t, but it seems to be an easier way to get started with programming at least. There are many frameworks and libraries available for Python, and it can be used within Visual Studio Code as well. It seems to be used in a variety of areas currently and is growing very fast, so it might be worth looking into.
Thanks for an inspirational Ignite 2020! /Calle Naavala, happy to talk to you about applications, management, repackaging, MSIX
Important news in Azure Active Directory
Azure AD Application Proxy
Support for header-based authentication in Azure Active Directory (AD) Application Proxy to enable organizations to move header-based authentication apps from legacy on-premises authentication systems, and natively connect them to Azure AD. This will be available in public preview by October 2020.
Expansion of secure hybrid access integrations to enable secure single sign-on for legacy applications that require Integrated Windows Authentication, header-based, LDAP, SSH and non-HTTP authorization. New partners include Palo Alto Networks, Cisco AnyConnect, Fortinet, Strata and Kemp. Any applications connected to existing networking and app delivery controllers from these partners can now benefit from cloud security powered by Azure AD.
Conditional Access and Identity Protection for Azure AD B2C
Conditional Access and Identity Protection for Azure AD B2C, now available in public preview, is included in unified Azure AD External Identities offer, so you can protect your customers’ accounts from compromise and make it easier for them to engage with your business. MS has also enhanced their Identity Protection capabilities for all identity types, with updates such as an enhanced real-time risk engine and password spray risk detection.
Updated My Sign-ins. Check if sign-ins are ok and report irregular sign-ins. This data is fed into the Machine Learning. Crowdsourced attack data! -> better protection and mitigations
Geeky greeting Martin Ericsson, happy to help with Azure, SharePoint and Microsoft 365 Apps
If you want to dig into any of the details above, head over to the Video Hub where you can find all the recorded sessions. Click here.
And as always Microsoft is summarizing their key takeaways in the Book of Ignite, have a look, and be inspired!
Best regards from Ebba and Mattias who summarized the stories from the team.
For more information and get in touch with the team contact Mattias!