Looking forward to SPC20

We have turned the dial into a new century since the last big Microsoft event of 2019. We are now ready to look forward to 2020 and what the next big SharePoint Conference will bring.

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SharePoint Conference 2020 is coming back to Vegas May 19 – 21 at the MGM Grand. If you are are working with the Microsoft 365 collaboration world of SharePoint, Teams, OneDrive, Yammer, Stream & more than this is a great conference to find a way to get to. This is the biggest Microsoft collab specific conference every year with can’t miss sessions, learning opportunities and primarily networking with peers. There are 2 primary release timelines from Microsoft and that includes SPC in the spring and then Ignite in the fall. Register today as the sooner you do the more you save.

What can you expect at SPC20?

Sessions and Roadmaps

The primary reason we go to conferences is to learn about topics that interest us. SPC20 has a massive amount of great content lined up with amazing speakers from Microsoft and the community. This is one of the few conferences where there will be a plethora of Microsoft speakers talking about what’s coming. Some specific Microsoft sessions I am excited to attend include:

Partners & Products

Don’t skip the expo hall. To often I see companies trying to build their own custom solution for a problem they have. After you walk the expo hall at SCP20 you can most likely find a partner or product that can help you faster if you build it yourself. Microsoft 365 is built to be built on and the partner ecosystem is incredibly strong. Partners are becoming more important in a cloud first world because it is nearly impossible to keep up with the change we have in Microsoft 365. Now picture building something custom and then trying to keep that up to date with all the changes you see every week in the roadmap and other solutions in Microsoft 365. Partners are built to help support you through those hurdles so you don’t have to.

Take the time to learn about what is out there to help you. Spend a lunch talking to each vendor about what they do. I have had conversations where I didn’t know this vendor existed and by the time I was done I personally wanted to partner with them because I heard the strength of the uses cases it solved. Also you may have a chance to win some pretty cool prizes.

Networking

It’s not just you. The community that is built around this ecosystem is hard to describe. It is open, engaging, educational, and fun. We are all peers at these conferences and there is no better time to enjoy a lunch, a hello in the hall, or some after session conversations about who you are and the work that you are doing. Having a network to go to and share knowledge with will motivate you and excite you to get back to your day to day work. I have attended a large amount of conferences and this is always my favorite part. I have built lasing friendships and connections that have helped me through my career through networking at conferences. Some tips for networking:

  • Introduce and ask questions to your fellow lunch mates
  • Go to the MS booth area and just listen for a period of time (this is one of my favorite things to do)
  • When in a session earlier, ask people sitting next to you where they work and what they do
  • Stay after the session to listen to questions asked to speakers even if you don’t have any
  • Ask speakers questions wherever you are, they will help
  • Enjoy at least 1 night at a vendor or MS event after hours
  • Engage in Twitter before, during, and after the conference – nearly every speaker is on Twitter

My sessions!

I’m honored to be speaking again at SharePoint Conference. This is always a fun one to speak at because of the size and excitement throughout the week. I will be presenting 2 sessions this year:

Everything you need to know about sharing files in OneDrive, SharePoint & Teams

Sharing files is a necessity within the intelligent workplace and it is powered by SharePoint. Being able to understand how sharing is brought together across Microsoft 365 will help you plan, manage, support, and effectively drive adoption of SharePoint, OneDrive, and Microsoft Teams.

In this session, you learn learn what you can do with modern sharing experiences, how they work under the covers before and after you share a file, and what management options are available to you. Getting content securely to the right people at the right time keeps a company moving.

You can’t spell SharePoint without ‘Share’!

How To Automate Your Modern SharePoint Site Provisioning Solution

I am presenting this session with the one and only Vlad Catrinescu

Creating modern SharePoint sites only takes a second but what if you want to customize or control that process? It can be a challenge to keep up with all the sites in an organization and can affect support and governance a SharePoint environment. In this session, we will learn how to use Microsoft’s latest tools such as Site Designs, Site Scripts, PnP Site Provisioning, PowerApps and Flow to create a full Site provisioning system with custom templates, custom branding and easy approval before creation.

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Register today!

Find and Report on Existing Delve Blogs

With the announcement that Delve blogs will be retiring you may want to see what blogs exist in your tenant. Delve blogs create their own site collection but do not show up in the admin center or when you use the SharePoint PowerShell module and the Get-SPOSite cmdlet. Thankfully PnP Powershell does return this. I put together a PowerShell script to find blogs and put a report together including the number of posts.

First, install PnP PowerShell if you haven’t already. I recommend installing via the PowerShell gallery with the command:

  • Install-Module SharePointPnPPowerShellOnline

Here is a script to find and export the blog information using PnP Powershell. Ensure you fill in your own variables for your tenant and the file path.

The results will include the URL of the site, the page count, last modified, and the email of the blog site owner.

If you want other details per page you can go directly to the pages library to view by applying “pPg/Forms/AllItems.aspx” to the blog site url. As an example:

When you go to the pages library you can download the posts. They exist in a JSON blob. This may be a good way to extract blog posts before they are removed via Microsoft.

To view the posts you will still go through “portals/hub/personal/drew” path vs “portals/personal/drew”.


Another path to get some of this information is through the User Profiles that exist. Each user profile includes a link to their Delve blog. So if you get all existing user profiles you can find where that value is filled in. The best way to get this at scale is through SharePoint search. I put together a script to do this as well. I included batching logic on the results which will be needed in large tenants as the max search results is only 500.

This is not the most efficient way to get this information but it could be helpful to double check the SharePoint sites approach. This is also a handy way to loop through user profiles via search.

Microsoft Ignite Recap Webinar Series – brought to you by Vlad & Drew

Are you ready for the next Microsoft Ignite? We are only a few weeks away from the annual gathering of Microsoft and their closest friends in sunny Orlando. Ignite is a large conference and has hundreds of announcements across different technologies like Azure, Windows, Data & AI, and Microsoft 365.

It isn’t possible take in all the news and announcements from this wild week so Vlad Catrinescu and myself will be putting together a series of webinars in which we will review what we learned while being there and helping you digest what may be most important to you and your business. We will also have some special guests for each of the webinars so make sure you stay tuned.

For everyone that attends a webinar, we will be having some giveaways with a collection of swag and goodies from Microsoft Ignite, including some lucky attendees who will get 12-month Xbox Live Gold Membership Cards, books, and more!

Vlad Catrinescu & Drew Madelung Microsoft Ignite Recap Webinar Series

Register for each webinar below

Webinar 1: Hot of the press from Microsoft Ignite with Vlad and Drew

Time: Nov 7, 2019 02:00 PM (EST)
Description: Join Microsoft MVPs Vlad Catrinescu and Drew Madelung directly on the floor of Microsoft Ignite and be one of the first people to hear the latest news that Microsoft announces . From the Year of Yammer, to intelligent intranets, and enhancements in compliance & security inside Microsoft 365, we will digest the important announcements for you, tell you why they matter, and point you to additional resources that you can take back to the rest of the organization!
Registration: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_E89uT30mSHGnxhSXzsjHbw


Webinar 2: Microsoft Ignite Recap: SharePoint & OneDrive for Business with Vlad & Drew

Special Guest: Mark Kashman
Time: Nov 12, 2019 01:00 PM (EST)
Description: Join Microsoft MVPs Vlad Catrinescu and Drew Madelung and special guest Mark Kashman the week after Ignite for a recap of the most important SharePoint and OneDrive for Business news that was announced. With the dust and excitement from Ignite settled, and the most important features out and tested, Vlad and Drew will cover the biggest and most important news from Ignite!

Registration: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_8EBMVb5eR7abqh4FIaOJAA

Special Guest!

Mark Kashman

Senior Product Manager @Microsoft

Mark is a senior product manager on the SharePoint & OneDrive team focused primarily on content collaboration in Microsoft 365. He has worked at MSFT since 2000. He started working with SharePoint building a digital asset management (DAM) solution built on top of SharePoint 2007 (IMM, the Interactive Media Manager) before moving to the SharePoint team. Mark also co-hosts The Intrazone podcast (aka.ms/TheIntrazone) – a show about the SharePoint intelligent intranet.


Webinar 3: Microsoft Ignite Recap: Microsoft Teams & Yammer with Vlad & Drew

Special Guest: Karuana Gatimu
Time: Nov 19, 2019 01:00 PM (EST)
Description: Join Microsoft MVPs Vlad Catrinescu and Drew Madelung the week after Ignite for a recap of the most important Microsoft Teams and Yammer news that were announced. With the dust and excitement from Ignite settled, and the most important features potentially out and tested, Vlad and Drew will cover the biggest and most important news from Ignite!
Registration: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN__Y9Q2gyMSda2dyFSYCZcfA

Special Guest!

Karuana Gatimu

Lead, Customer Advocacy Group @Microsoft

Lead of Customer Advocacy Group for Microsoft Teams Engineering. Passionate O365 business architect specializing in measurable outcomes, solutions and adoption. Author – Microsoft Service Adoption Specialist course; Steward of Office 365 Champions program. Exec Producer of https://aka.ms/CoffeeintheCloud on YoutTube. Learn more at https://aka.ms/MicrosoftAdoption


Webinar 4: Microsoft Ignite Recap: Microsoft 365 Security & Compliance with Vlad & Drew

Special Guest: Antonio Maio
Time: Nov 21, 2019 01:00 PM (EST)
Description: Join Microsoft MVPs Vlad Catrinescu and Drew Madelung after Ignite for a recap of the most important Security and Compliance news that was announced. With the dust and excitement from Ignite settled, and the most important features potentially out and tested, Vlad and Drew will cover the biggest and most important news from Ignite!
Registration: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_9BdGl9OLQtay00Dxh4N_hA

Special Guest!

Antonio Maio

Associate Director & Senior Enterprise Architect @Protiviti

Antonio Maio is an information security architect with over 25 years of experience in cyber security practices and systems, product management, software development and leadership. Antonio is currently a Senior Manager and Senior SharePoint Architect with Protiviti. He has been awarded a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional award for 8 consecutive years, from 2012 to 2019, specializing in Microsoft SharePoint Server, Office 365 and Office Services. His background includes implementing cryptography and PKI systems, information security technologies, and both information governance and cyber security best practices. His experience with Microsoft SharePoint and Office 365 extends over the last 10 years. When he’s not helping enterprise, military or government organizations solve security challenges, you can catch him speaking at conferences or contributing to the community through this blog.


Please register for all the webinars you want to attend.

The webinars will be recorded, and the recording will be sent to all the registered attendees after the webinar has taken place!

PowerShell for SharePoint Site Designs & Site Scripts

SharePoint site designs and site scripts allow you to provision sites and apply your own configurations at that time. This solution allows you to drive consistency for sites being created in SharePoint Online. The management of these is currently all done by PowerShell. I have been working with these and building presentations on them and have put together a collection of PowerShell scripts that I found useful. This includes a lot of the base functionality for working with them but is absolutely not all inclusive.

This is not intended to be ran as 1 full script but use pieces of these together and run sections that you need at a point in time. A few things this script includes:

  • Creating site scripts and site designs
  • Add and remove site scripts from an existing site design
  • Setting site design view rights
  • Getting site scripts from a list
  • Viewing status and information about previous ran or running site designs

PowerShell scripts

Here is the link to the repository on Github for the site design and site script PowerShell file.

Please help update as well!

Key links

SharePoint site designs and site scripts overview from Microsoft docs customization/site-design-overview

Multiple provisioning blog posts from Beau Cameron

PnP Remote Provisioning

Amazing info from Laura Kokkarinen

Will you be at SharePoint Conference 2019? I will!

I am excited to share that I will be speaking and attending the next SharePoint Conference in Las Vegas during the full week of May 20th in 2019. This is a can’t miss event that will keep you up to speed with all of the great new things coming out in the collaboration and communication space at Microsoft in 2019. Last year we got the introduction into SharePoint spaces! You will want to be there in person to see what’s next.

You can register early to take advantage of some early swag (like an Xbox!) and even save more money using the code MADELUNG when you register!

Why you should try to go

  • Networking & networking & more networking. I love events of this scale because of the opportunities to meet new people and learn from others experiences. There is no better spot than after a great session at a lunch table or after sessions are done and you are out at a great dinner in Vegas! Strike up conversations and who knows what kind of nuggets of great info you might find.
  • It’s not just about SharePoint anymore. Yes the name is SharePoint Conference but this event is really about bringing together all of the Microsoft workloads around communication and collaboration and how they work together. This includes primary focuses outside of SharePoint and OneDrive like Teams, PowerBI, Yammer, Planner, and larger topics like Microsoft Search and Azure.
  • Interactions with Microsoft. What is that super specific question or issue or scenario that has been nagging you or your company? An event like this is a great time to connect directly with people on the product team about how things work and why they were done the way they were. These discussions can provide priceless value that you can take back with you that you can’t find anywhere else.
  • It’s in Vegas and Vegas is awesome.

My sessions

From start to finish: How to create your modern SharePoint site provisioning solution

Creating modern SharePoint sites only takes a second, but what if you want to customize or control that process? It can be a challenge to keep up with all the sites in an organization and can affect support and governance of a SharePoint environment. In this session, learn how to use Microsoft’s latest tools such as Site Designs, PnP Site Provisioning, PowerApps and Flow to create a full site provisioning system with custom templates, custom branding, and easy approval before creation!

This is a session I am doing with Vlad Catrinescu and will be a deeper dive into what we presented at Microsoft Ignite in 2018. Here is a video sneak preview of what to expect!

Kudos to Adam King for help with the video! (and the security guard)

Taking OneDrive for Business administration to the next level

OneDrive for Business is a key workload in Office 365 and is an integral part of your collaboration and content strategy. Whether you are looking to roll-out OneDrive for Business or are already are utilizing it, there are important things that you should know about for administration. Do you know what is possible for admins? Do you know if your content really is secure? Do you know who can and can’t share? You also can’t have a great OneDrive for Business experience without sync but there are things you need to know about deploying and managing sync across your enterprise. This session will go through real world experiences of managing OneDrive for Business and what you really need to know to be successful.


Can’t wait to see everyone at #SPC19!