Office 365 News and Notes for January 2018
Hello! My name is Shane Young and I will be your snarky guide for these monthly articles covering Office 365 news and notes. My goal is to help you sort through the millions of news articles we get each month for O365 by highlighting the ones I think you need to read and giving you some context on how they apply. Then after you consume the info, feel free to leave comments below, so we can continue the conversation. You can also steer me to talking about things from your point of view in the future.
Microsoft Is adding file restore to OneDrive for Business –- Free
I love me some OneDrive and one of the best parts is that it keeps getting better. You already had file versions for undoing boo-boos but now they are adding file restore. If you don’t just mess up the content but actually delete it, you can get it back with a couple clicks of the mouse. This protects you from you from silly ransomware. They delete or encrypt all your files? No problem. Just restore them. So cool. Read more here from Mary Jo Foley.
It Will Be the Year of PowerApps
This falls more under Shane’s opinion than actual news. Have you tried out PowerApps yet? They are pretty darn awesome. Long story short, they let you create web and mobile apps without writing code by connecting to over 160 data sources. They are finally the replacement for InfoPath and those darn Access Web Apps solutions we have been building for years. I would highly recommend you dive into them and start learning how they work if you haven’t already. This time next year, they will be the norm for creating Microsoft solutions and you need to be ahead of that curve. Because I am a nice guy, here is a link to my article on getting started with PowerApps and SharePoint Online. You are welcome.
Full Fidelity When Moving Files Anywhere in O365
About darn time! For years, one of my biggest pet peeves with SharePoint and then later Office 365 has been when you move a file from one spot to another, you lose all context. Not anymore. Files moved within the ecosystem now retain their metadata, versions, and other info that we need. Hooray. This is hitting Targeted Release customers now with a slow move to general availability. Be sure to read the article for the fine print and some FAQs. Overall, this feature gets an A from me.
Office 365 Information Protection Guide for GDPR
If GDPR affects your business, you probably know that May 25th is coming faster than Christmas does every year. It is scary. The good news is that Microsoft is pushing out content and tools to help you sort out the mess the best it can with the latest release being the Information Protection Guide. If I was you, I would check out this article from our very own Tony Redmond breaking down all of the GDPR content and tips from him. Who better to help you get well-read on this subject than Tony? He lives on that side of the pond, so he has to be smarter about all of this than me.
Microsoft Flow Improves the Office 365 User Connector
Remember when I was telling you how important PowerApps is becoming? Well, I should have included Flow in that story because at the end of the day, they are both better together. But isn’t what this is about? So never mind… Anyway, in Flow, they have updated the Office 365 User connector with a set of new actions for updating profiles and working with user photos. This is great because automating tasks like profile updates in O365 is a very valuable and easy to build Flow to get you learning the platform. Maybe even make a PowerApps mobile app for taking pictures and collecting info on new employees for updating AD by triggering a Flow! FUN! Now I know what I am doing the rest of the week. Can you beat me to it?
Renaming Site Collections and Tenants in SharePoint Online Is Coming
I admit this is a duplicate of my SharePoint article but renaming your Office 365 tenant URL is a feature that transcends boundaries. Therefore, you need to know. Long story short, Microsoft is working on giving us this ability based on an update to a user voice request. This is also more proof to make sure you post your feedback and requests. They really do read them and use them to drive future features. For our rename, no delivery date yet but I am excited to see “Working on it” for once in my life.
Microsoft Teams Gets Its Biggest Update Since Its Launch
Cool. Admittedly, I don’t use Microsoft Teams much (I am sure it has nothing to do with my company size) but reading this article kind of got me jazzed up. It is worthy Office 365 news. The long story short, it rolled in new ways to use Apps right within Teams in context. The apps are both from Office 365 and from partners, including some big names like InVision and SurveyMonkey. It also added slash commands where you can type / and then see the options available to you in the current window for things like navigating within the platform or doing a task. All of this sounds like a better, faster, and more integrated Teams experience. And you know if I didn’t write anything mean or condescending, it must mean some cool updates.