Groups

Spanning Continues to Fight for Office 365 Backups

by Tony Redmond

I don't consider backups to be a necessity for Office 365, but ISVs continue to offer these products and customers continue to buy, so I chatted with Spanning to find out what's happening in the Office 365 market, who's using cloud backups, and why. We also spoke about the challenges that backup vendors continue to have in coping with some of the unique aspects of Office 365.

SharePoint Online, Groups, Regional Settings, and Pacific Time

by Tony Redmond

Office 365 Groups are the reason why many SharePoint Online sites appear in tenants. If you're on the Pacific coast of the U.S., the regional settings are OK. But anyone else in the rest of the world who uses the SharePoint browser interface will see times and dates in that instead of the local format. You can change the regional settings for a site, and now you can make sure that new sites have the right settings.

Why the Office 365 Group Expiration Policy Needs Help

by Tony Redmond

It is nice to have an Azure Active Directory Expiration Policy for Office 365 Groups, but it's not so good that the policy functions exclusively based on age. Another problem is that administrators have no way of knowing when groups will expire. So we take out PowerShell, write a script, and hey presto, we have a report. We still need to solve the problem of creating a policy that functions based on activity rather than age, but that's another day's work.

Updates for Planner but No Sign of Guest Access

by Tony Redmond

Microsoft has released some useful updates for the Office 365 Planner app, but external access is still not there, which is baffling. On the other hand, you now have an OWA-like schedule view, filters to suppress tasks that you don't want to see, and better notifications to tell you when you must do some work. And an iCalendar feed is coming soon to allow you to clutter up your Outlook calendar with even more stuff.

Behind the Scenes in an Office 365 Group Mailbox

by Tony Redmond

You know that Office 365 Groups have a mailbox and that the mailbox holds conversations and the group calendar. But many other folders exist in a group mailbox. Some are used for internal purposes, some by clients. And sometimes you want to look to see what those folders hold, as when some mail might have been misdirected to Junk Email.

The Highs and Lows of Office 365 in 2017

by Tony Redmond

Lots of good things happened in the world of Office 365 during 2017. More people than ever before use the service, new applications and functionality appeared, and Microsoft delivered a robust service. On the other hand, a few lows happened as well, as sometimes bad decisions and miscommunication soured the experience. But overall, 2017 was good and laid a great foundation for 2018.

AAD Licensing for Groups and Teams Features Burdens Office 365 Tenants

by Tony Redmond

Microsoft clarified what AAD features need premium licenses at Ignite. Tenants need many of those features to control Office 365 Groups and Teams, and some of the listed features are surprising. Did you know that the group creation policy is a premium feature? Or adding a default classification. The chosen set of features seems odd, but at least Microsoft is now clear about what you must license.