Author: Tony Redmond

Tony Redmond is an independent consultant who specializes in Microsoft collaboration technology. He runs his own consulting company and advises many companies on how to best develop, use, or exploit Microsoft technology, He is the lead author of the Office 365 for IT Pros eBook, the only constantly-updated book covering Office 365 and associated technologies. You can buy a copy of the book at (Gumroad.com – EPUB/PDF version) or (Amazon – Kindle).

Can Exchange Online Really Recall Messages?

by Tony Redmond

Outlook users are more than aware of the problems involved in message recall, a feature that's only available in Outlook desktop and has a nasty habit of not working. The reasons why the feature fails are well known, but soon might be addressed by a new Exchange Online implementation that promises to work for all clients and across Office 365. Time will tell if careers and love can be rescued by the new message recall.

Managing Teams Private Channels

with 1 Comment by Tony Redmond

Everyone got very excited when Microsoft introduced private channels for Teams. Which is nice. The hard work of understanding the technology and managing its introduction now begins, so in this article we look at how to control the creation of private channels and what to do once private channels are out there in use. Some planning is always good, and mastering private channels will take preparation. Let's begin!

Introducing Teams Private Channels

with 2 Comments by Tony Redmond

Microsoft launched private channels for Teams at the Ignite conference. This article describes the architecture and structure of private channels and discusses their intended usage. In a follow-up, I'll go into how to create and manage private channels in a Teams deployment and discuss some of the issues you should consider when using this new feature.

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    The Big Side Effect on Teams of Renaming a SharePoint Site URL

    with 1 Comment by Tony Redmond

    SharePoint Online now boasts the ability to rename site URLs, which seems good, but not so good when you discover that the new URL breaks the connection with Teams. The fact that this happens is revealed in Microsoft documentation and it's been a problem since the beta testing of the site rename function. Microsoft seems curiously disinterested in fixing the problem as quickly as they should have. A case of attention distracted elsewhere?

    FindTime – An Underappreciated Gem in the Office 365 World

    by Tony Redmond

    Microsoft's FindTime service helps Office 365 users find the right time to schedule a meeting with people inside and outside their tenant. It's an underappreciated gem. And the good news is that an even better service called Calendar.Help is on the way. Well, it's better if you like asking Cortana to find the right meeting dates for you rather than the more-hands on approach taken by FindTime. Whichever way you cut it, help is always appreciated when setting up meetings, so it's nice that these tools are available.

    Microsoft to Office 365 Users: Have Your Credit Cards Ready

    with 3 Comments by Tony Redmond

    In a rather odd decision, Microsoft is launching self-service purchases for Office 365 tenant users who want to use the Power Platform without consulting an administrator. Another troubling sign is the way that the MailItemsAccessed audit event has been packaged into a new Microsoft 365 Audit feature. Tenants expected to see this audit event last January after Microsoft announced it was coming. Its subsequent disappearance was a mystery until now.

    G Suite Gets an Executive Reboot to Revamp Office 365 Foe

    with 1 Comment by Tony Redmond

    Javier Soltero, ex-boss of Outlook, is now running G Suite for Google. The appointment is an opportunity to reboot G Suite to take on Office 365 and make up some of the ground that's been lost in the last five years using the "new brush sweeps clean" principle. In other news, Microsoft bought Mover to acquire its migration connectors that move files into SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business, including files from Google Drive.

    Discover Who Creates Guest Accounts in Office 365 Applications

    with 2 Comments by Tony Redmond

    Office 365 applications now create many guest accounts in Azure Active Directory. You can see what accounts exist, but it's more difficult to discover who created the accounts - or why they were created. Fortunately, the Office 365 audit log holds a lot of useful data that can be interrogated to find some answers and PowerShell is a great tool for slicing and dicing audit data. See what you think of the answers I've come up with.

    SharePoint Gets Better Connected to Teams

    with 2 Comments by Tony Redmond

    The fit-and-finish quality within Office 365 is sometimes less than desirable. Two recent changes in SharePoint Online make it easier for users to know when a document library is connected to Teams and to generate thumbnails for items stored in the library. Neither change is awe-inspiring, but both are examples of how to improve SharePoint's fit-and-finish, which is a good thing.

    No Surprise That Exchange Online Uses Windows Server Core

    by Tony Redmond

    A recent Microsoft post contained the news that Exchange Online uses Windows Server Core. That might be news to some, but not to anyone who's been following the advice of the Exchange product group. Exchange Online doesn't use virtual servers, follows a preferred architecture, wants to reduce the potential attack surface, and extract as much CPU as possible out of its servers. All good reasons why Windows Server Core helps.

    Change in Management Philosophy Needed to Accelerate Teams Growth

    with 1 Comment by Tony Redmond

    Microsoft Teams is very successful at present, but a nagging doubt exists that some of the approaches taken by Microsoft towards Teams management and administration are less than optimum. It's great to introduce a mass of new features on an ongoing basis and it's better when policies exist to control the use of the features. But do new features always need to be enabled out-of-the-box?

    Making the Exchange – Azure Active Directory Connection More Reliable

    by Tony Redmond

    Microsoft posted an odd blog on September 9 to announce improvements in the relationship between Exchange Online and Azure Active Directory. Many Office 365 tenants might have ignored the post, but it's actually about a piece of important work to help the service run better. Many updates happen to Exchange Online objects that need to be replicated to Azure Active Directory and onward to other Office 365 app directories. This work means that changes show up faster, which is good, but there's a small downside to note.