Organizing My Day | Why I use Microsoft ToDo

The last few weeks seem like groundhogs day. The same long day replaying itself over and over, I seem to lose track of days and time. Before covid I would describe my task organizing as “herding cats”. Now,  I think it’s more like juggling cats  (Steve Martin reference). Staying organized during these hectic times is very important, I can increase my productivity saving time and helping me to maintain balance and my sanity 😊. Having an app to track task all my tasks is key. I have changed apps many times over the years always looking for the perfect one. Lately, I have been using Microsoft ToDo. Its not perfect and I doubt I will ever find one that is. Overall, I’m pretty happy with it and how it  helps me to stay organized and boosts my productivity. Here are some of the reasons why I like it.

Aggregate Tasks from Other Apps

I can add tasks from different applications and ToDo aggregates them for me. This is helpful because I don’t need to break my workflow by going to another app. If a task comes to mind I add it and keep my train of thought. Tasks added in OneNote, Word, Planner, Outlook and Flagged emails are all aggregated and appear in ToDo. ToDo also has a Power Automate connector so you can connect to many other programs and automate task creation. As an example a can use a Power Atomate Flow to create a task for me when an activity is created in my CRM system.

Lists to Organize My Tasks

I can create lists and add my tasks giving me flexibility in the way I organize. I can have lists by person or project, time period, priority or anything else in whatever combination of categories makes sense to me.

Share Tasks with Others

I can share my lists with anyone I want. If I am working on a project with someone we can easily share status of our tasks.

Available on All My Devices

Through out my day I regularly use multiple devices. Having a seamless experience across all of them is an absolute requirement. If I’m walking the dog and I need to create or update my plans I can do it quickly and easily on my phone.

Hashtag Refines Searching

I can use hashtags to further refine how I organize and search. This requires a bit of discipline because you need to be consistent however its extremely powerful way of further orgainzing and refining your tasks.

Organize my tasks by Identity

The app allows me to switch between identities and my tasks are associated with the corresponding identity. I keep my home tasks associated with my personal identity and my work tasks associated with my corporate identity. This gives me a way of separating work and personal life while still using the same app.

Microsoft Tech News and Product Updates: 06/01/2020

Happy Monday! I hope you had a great weekend. A couple of items of note from last week;

Product News, Tech Posts & Announcements from last week

Azure Infrastructure
Microsoft and Docker collaborate on new ways to deploy containers on AzureAzure
Optimize for internet traffic with Peering Service and the routing preference optionAzure
Streamlining your image building process with Azure Image BuilderAzure
Azure portal May 2020 updateTech Community
Business Applications
Roadmap update: What’s next for the new workspace experience upgrade in the coming monthsPower BI
Power Apps Build Tools for Azure DevOpsDev Blogs
Windows
Deploying a new version of Windows 10 in a remote worldTech Community
What’s new for IT pros in Windows 10, version 2004Tech Community
Security baseline (DRAFT): Windows 10 and Windows Server, version 2004Tech Community
App Dev
Intro – SQL Server Transparent Data Encryption and Extensible Key Management Using Azure Key VaultTech Community
Azure SQL Zone Redundant Configuration for High AvailabilityChannel 9
More Azure Blob Storage EnchancementsJames Serra
Microsoft 365
What’s New with Microsoft 365 | May 2020YouTube
What’s New in Microsoft Teams | May 2020Tech Community
Project Cortex Update – May 29, 2020Tech Community
New collaboration features on OneDrive for webTech Community
Recent updates to the Microsoft 365 admin centerTech Community
General availability of automatic classification with sensitivity labels in Microsoft 365 servicesTech Community
Create a list from Microsoft ExcelTech Community
Stay organized with Play My Emails in OutlookTech Community
Security
Manage authentication sessions in Azure AD Conditional Access is now generally available!Tech Community
Classification Depth Limited Private PreviewTech Community
Zero Trust deployment guide for devicesTech Community
Managing cybersecurity like a business risk: Part 1—Modeling opportunities and threatsSecurity
 Manufacturing
Manufacturing Industry Blog
Innovation Space: Autonomous SystemsYouTube

View previous weeks news, tech posts and announcements here on Linkedin or follow me on Twitter @MrLouisG

Remote Work Resources

  • Enabling remote work with Microsoft 365 Part 1 & Part 2 – Overview on YouTube by Stephen Rose
  • If you own Office 365 and are currently deploying Teams, we have multiple free programs we can offer to assist. If you are interested, we can schedule a 30-minute call to review the available resources.
  • If you have users that are not licensed for Teams, we are offering a free 6-month Office 365 E1 subscription to our clients affected by COVID-19.
  • Microsoft is offering Windows Virtual Desktop at reduced rates.  If you are interested, we can schedule a call to review options.
  • We have created a PowerApps CRISIS COMMUNICATION template and reclassified Push Notifications from premium to standard licensing so you can use the apps full functionality.  Details are available here. Schedule a remote MTC session to review app and provide deployment guidance.
  • To assist our customers and community in their crisis response efforts, we’re extending the Priority Notifications promotion into the second half of 2020. Ongoing access to Priority Notifications will be available to facilitate in crisis response and recovery efforts. After the promotion period ends, licensed users will be able to send Priority Notifications according to the terms of their subscription.
  • Leverage a bot to answer questions and keep employees up to date. Here is a the template for FAQ Plus.  You can find a description of other available templates here.
  •  Build a Crisis FAQ bot using Power Virtual Agents
  • Build a crisis management site in SharePoint to connect people and information here is the blog post and the Look Book so you can add to your tenant.
  • In partnership with Commvault we are offering free data protection for devices through 9/1. Please see offer here.
  • The Microsoft Work from Home Guide can be downloaded from this blog post. This is the guide Microsoft distributed to its employees.
  • Partner PTC is offering use of their AR Remote Assist Product Vuforia Chalk for free through June.
  •  Dynamics 365 Remote Assist allows field technicians and engineers to collaborate with colleagues and experts from different locations, reducing travel and resolving some of the immediate obstacles facing us all. Dynamics 365 Customer Service or Dynamics 365 Remote Assist may be available free of charge for up to 6 months if you are implementing a solution in response to COVID-19, either on a Microsoft-provided template or custom implementation.  
  • User Solutions, a producer of production scheduling software systems, announces it will offer Resource Manager for Excel (RMX), a standalone production scheduling and materials requirements planning system, free of charge to manufacturers temporarily repurposing their production lines in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
  • Microsoft has created a detailed guide for enabling remote work designed for IT Pros. It can be downloaded from this blog post.
  •  New identity features help empower essential Firstline Workers

Join the community Microsoft Tech Community: Enabling Remote Work

Please see my post Enabling Remote Workers for a categorized overview of resources and my Enabling Remote Workers PointDrive for a more comprehensive list of documentation.

Microsoft Tech News and Product Updates: 05/25/20

Happy Monday! I hope you had a great weekend. A couple of items of note from last week;

A screenshot of a cell phone

Description automatically generated

Product News, Tech Posts & Announcements from last week

Azure Infrastructure
Azure Arc enabled Kubernetes preview and new ecosystem partnersAzure
Evolving Azure AD for every user and any identity with External IdentitiesTech Community
Business Continuity with Azure – BackupTech Community
Business Applications
The Computing RevolutionYouTube
Windows
Everything new from Microsoft Edge at Build 2020Windows
App Dev
Microsoft Build Book of News [Summary of news from the event]Book of News
Developer Velocity: Empowering developers to fuel business performanceAzure
Azure Synapse Analytics: Insights for allAzure
Build 2020 – Introducing Bot Framework Virtual Assistant 1.0Tech Community
Serverless Event-based Automation with PowerShell & Azure FunctionsMicrosoft Mechanics
Mark Russinovich on Azure innovation and more!Channel 9
Build announcements: Azure Synapse Analytics in public preview and moreJames Serra
Microsoft 365
Here’s what’s new and coming soon to Microsoft 365Microsoft 365
Announcing Microsoft Lists – Your smart information tracking app in Microsoft 365Tech Community
What’s New in Microsoft Teams | Build Edition 2020Tech Community
Understanding and troubleshooting Out of Office (OOF) repliesTech Community
Galactic Collaboration Summit – upcoming online training eventTech Community
New capabilities coming to the Microsoft GraphTech Community
Take Microsoft Search further with Microsoft Graph connectorsTech Community
Security
Microsoft Information Protection and Compliance Deployment Acceleration GuideTech Community
Microsoft Build brings new innovations and capabilities to keep developers and customers secureSecurity
Build support for open source in your organizationSecurity
Success in security: reining in entropySecurity
Cybersecurity best practices to implement highly secured devicesSecurity
 
Manufacturing Industry Blog
Simple Trends That Will Continue to Drive ERPMBT Mag

View previous weeks news, tech posts and announcements here on Linkedin or follow me on Twitter @MrLouisG

Remote Work Resources

  • Enabling remote work with Microsoft 365 & – Overview on YouTube by Stephen Rose. Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4 & Part 5
  • If you own Office 365 and are currently deploying Teams, we have multiple free programs we can offer to assist. If you are interested, we can schedule a 30-minute call to review the available resources.
  • If you have users that are not licensed for Teams, we are offering a free 6-month Office 365 E1 subscription to our clients affected by COVID-19.
  • Microsoft is offering Windows Virtual Desktop at reduced rates.  If you are interested, we can schedule a call to review options.
  • We have created a PowerApps CRISIS COMMUNICATION template and reclassified Push Notifications from premium to standard licensing so you can use the apps full functionality.  Details are available here. Schedule a remote MTC session to review app and provide deployment guidance.
  • To assist our customers and community in their crisis response efforts, we’re extending the Priority Notifications promotion into the second half of 2020. Ongoing access to Priority Notifications will be available to facilitate in crisis response and recovery efforts. After the promotion period ends, licensed users will be able to send Priority Notifications according to the terms of their subscription.
  • Leverage a bot to answer questions and keep employees up to date. Here is a the template for FAQ Plus.  You can find a description of other available templates here.
  •  Build a Crisis FAQ bot using Power Virtual Agents
  • Build a crisis management site in SharePoint to connect people and information here is the blog post and the Look Book so you can add to your tenant.
  • In partnership with Commvault we are offering free data protection for devices through 9/1. Please see offer here.
  • The Microsoft Work from Home Guide can be downloaded from this blog post. This is the guide Microsoft distributed to its employees.
  • Partner PTC is offering use of their AR Remote Assist Product Vuforia Chalk for free through June.
  •  Dynamics 365 Remote Assist allows field technicians and engineers to collaborate with colleagues and experts from different locations, reducing travel and resolving some of the immediate obstacles facing us all. Dynamics 365 Customer Service or Dynamics 365 Remote Assist may be available free of charge for up to 6 months if you are implementing a solution in response to COVID-19, either on a Microsoft-provided template or custom implementation.  
  • User Solutions, a producer of production scheduling software systems, announces it will offer Resource Manager for Excel (RMX), a standalone production scheduling and materials requirements planning system, free of charge to manufacturers temporarily repurposing their production lines in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
  • Microsoft has created a detailed guide for enabling remote work designed for IT Pros. It can be downloaded from this blog post.
  •  New identity features help empower essential Firstline Workers

Join the community Microsoft Tech Community: Enabling Remote Work

Please see my post Enabling Remote Workers for a categorized overview of resources and my Enabling Remote Workers PointDrive for a more comprehensive list of documentation.

Upcoming Training

Power Apps: Search here for App in a Day workshops, Free online training at Learn

Azure Developer:  events

Office 365 & Teams: Join the  Adoption Monthly Community Calls

Azure: Microsoft Cloud Workshop hosts extensive hands on labs and workshop content

Queensryche | Operation: Mindcrime

I enjoy listening to concept albums. They are  rock-n-rolls’ operas. A glass of wine and a pair of headphones is all I need to listen to a great story. The images are up to me I’m my own director and the movie is different every time.  These posts pay homage to some of my favorites.

Queensryche: Operation Mindcrime

Government corruption, economic inequality, priests involved in sex scandals and Dr. X. What more could anyone ask for? It’s a great story. Here is the cliff notes version.

Nikki a heroin addict lies in near catatonic state in a mental institution  when memories of the past come flooding back. Disillusioned by society he is manipulated into joining a secret organization dedicated to revolution which is  led by Dr. X We can sense Dr. X is evil however Nikki is desperate for answers and falls for the trap. Dr. X brainwashes Nikki into becoming a hitman for his organization.

Through Dr. X Nikki is introduced to Father William a corrupt priest who offers the services of a teenage prostitute turned nun named Sister Mary. Nikki begins to fall in love with Mary and questions his own actions and those of Dr. X. Realizing that Mary is a threat Dr X orders Nikki to kill her and Father William. Nikki kills the priest but cannot bring himself to hurt Mary. He decides he has to leave the organization and confronts Dr. X. Conflicted and confused he returns to Mary only to find her dead.

Nikki cannot cope with the loss and the possibility that he might have been responsible for Marys murder and he goes insane. He is arrested for the murder of Mary and the others he committed. He now suffers almost complete memory loss and is put into a mental hospital. The story comes full circle ending with Nikki looking into a mirror not recognizing who he is or what he has become.

This was their 3rd studio album released in spring of 1988. At the time I owned a record store with my niece and nephew in law. We specialized in all thing hard rock and heavy metal. As soon as we opened the case it was on the stores sound system. We were blown away. This album is truly stellar throughout. There are no weak cuts. You are taken on a virtual roller coaster ride of emotions as you see Nikkis life collapse through the eyes of a stranger.  

Unfortunately, bands don’t make much money from streaming music, If you can please support them by seeing live shows, buying CDs and merchandise.

Augmented Reality: Helping Business Adjust to Remote Work Challenges

Augmented reality [AR] superimposes a computer-generated image on a user’s view of the real world providing a composite view. Sounds like science fiction though it is a very commonly used  technology. Gamers are very familiar with it.  Two of the most popular video games in the world  Pokemon Go and Minecraft Earth use AR. If you are not familiar with those games google tiger on your phone. You’ll see an option for 3D and one to see the 3D image in your environment. With just my cell phone and the cloud I can see a tiger in my environment and really get an idea of its veracity, size and movement.

A zebra standing in front of a window

Description automatically generated
Here is an image of a tiger emerging from the rose bushes next to my house. Not real of course just a super imposed 3D model.

In business AR changes the way we collaborate. Just like the tiger appearing in my garden a product lets say a hammer can appear virtually in 3D allowing meeting participants from anywhere to see and interact with the design and the components. They can brainstorm on ways to improve or solve a problem remotely as if they were all in the same room. Another business use is the remote expert. In this example an expert can see an environment and use 3d images and annotations to remotely troubleshoot a problem. Many companies have successfully integrated AR technology. One example is Ford Motor Company who uses AR to design vechiles.

The impact on business will be even greater as more use cases emerge due to covid-19 crisis. Here are some examples I have encountered with my clients in the last few weeks;

Field Service – This client supports business critical equipment and is paid to be onsite with the equipment in case it malfunctions. Now only essential employees are allowed onsite. The technician being employed by my client is no longer allowed to be onsite. Using AR the expert can see the equipment exactly as the essential workers sees it and remotely instruct the onsite employee on how to remediate the issue using annotations and instructions that appear in the field of vison of the onsite employee.

Training – This client creates very complex industrial products throughout the world. Their experts travel the globe training new employees on the production floor. Now travel is severely restricted and in some cases impossible. Using AR the experts no longer need to travel and can provide nearly hands on training from anywhere in the world. They see through the eyes of the trainee and can easily instruct through 3d models and on-screen annotations. An additional benefic gained was the use of real time translation breaking down language barriers.

Sales– This client makes high tech office equipment. They have showrooms to display the equipment and offer pre and post sales support. Now their customers cannot visit the showroom. Using AR their customers can remotely see a 3D model and see how their configuration will actually look in their office space.

AR is here. Its an inexpensive and mature technology when used creativity can add tremendous value to a business process.

Microsoft Tech News and Product Updates: 5/18/2020

Happy Monday! I hope you had a great weekend. A couple of items of note from last week;

A screenshot of a cell phone

Description automatically generated

Product News, Tech Posts & Announcements from last week

Azure Infrastructure
Announcing the general availability of Azure Spot Virtual MachinesAzure
Business Applications
Learn how to deliver insights faster with Azure Synapse AnalyticsAzure
New Dynamics 365 Manufacturing Accelerator for supplier managementDynamics 365
Windows
  
App Dev
Enabling developers to work remotelyTips & Tricks
Overview of the Microsoft identity platform for developersYouTube
Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) on the Power Platform explainedPowerApps
TWC9: #MSBuild Preview, VS Codespaces, GitHub Satellite, TypeScript 3.9 and moreChannel 9
Microsoft 365
Microsoft 365 Virtual Marathon is a free online, 36 hour event happening May 27-28 2020. We will have sessions going the whole time with speakers from around the globe. This event is free for all wanting to attend. Come join us as we talk about the many different pieces of Microsoft 365 including Azure.M365 Virtual Marathon
Today, we start by announcing the general availability of the new Monthly Enterprise Channel and a few other changes that modernize the way you service Microsoft 365 Apps, as you deliver the latest productivity value to your businessesTech Community
Automate teams provisioning with the Request-a-team app templateTech Community
Top 10 keyboard shortcuts to make you a Microsoft Teams super userTech Community
Empower your employees to capture customer feedback in Microsoft TeamsTech Community
How to configure the new Room Finder in OutlookTech Community
Security
Monitor your Azure workload compliance with Azure Security BenchmarkAzure
Announcing general availability of ‘know your data’ (discovery and review capabilities) in the Microsoft 365 compliance centerTech Community
Microsoft helps employees work securely from home using a Zero Trust strategyIT Showcase
Empowering your remote workforce with end-user security awarenessSecurity
Open-sourcing new COVID-19 threat intelligenceSecurity
 
Manufacturing Industry Blog
Supercharging Industrial IoTMBT

View previous weeks news, tech posts and announcements here on Linkedin or follow me on Twitter @MrLouisG

Remote Work Resources

  • Enabling remote work with Microsoft 365 Part 1, Part 2 , Part 3 & Part 4 – Overview on YouTube by Stephen Rose
  • If you own Office 365 and are currently deploying Teams, we have multiple free programs we can offer to assist. If you are interested, we can schedule a 30-minute call to review the available resources.
  • If you have users that are not licensed for Teams, we are offering a free 6-month Office 365 E1 subscription to our clients affected by COVID-19.
  • Microsoft is offering Windows Virtual Desktop at reduced rates.  If you are interested, we can schedule a call to review options.
  • We have created a PowerApps CRISIS COMMUNICATION template and reclassified Push Notifications from premium to standard licensing so you can use the apps full functionality.  Details are available here. Schedule a remote MTC session to review app and provide deployment guidance.
  • To assist our customers and community in their crisis response efforts, we’re extending the Priority Notifications promotion into the second half of 2020. Ongoing access to Priority Notifications will be available to facilitate in crisis response and recovery efforts. After the promotion period ends, licensed users will be able to send Priority Notifications according to the terms of their subscription.
  • Leverage a bot to answer questions and keep employees up to date. Here is a the template for FAQ Plus.  You can find a description of other available templates here.
  •  Build a Crisis FAQ bot using Power Virtual Agents
  • Build a crisis management site in SharePoint to connect people and information here is the blog post and the Look Book so you can add to your tenant.
  • In partnership with Commvault we are offering free data protection for devices through 9/1. Please see offer here.
  • The Microsoft Work from Home Guide can be downloaded from this blog post. This is the guide Microsoft distributed to its employees.
  • Partner PTC is offering use of their AR Remote Assist Product Vuforia Chalk for free through June.
  •  Dynamics 365 Remote Assist allows field technicians and engineers to collaborate with colleagues and experts from different locations, reducing travel and resolving some of the immediate obstacles facing us all. Dynamics 365 Customer Service or Dynamics 365 Remote Assist may be available free of charge for up to 6 months if you are implementing a solution in response to COVID-19, either on a Microsoft-provided template or custom implementation.  
  • User Solutions, a producer of production scheduling software systems, announces it will offer Resource Manager for Excel (RMX), a standalone production scheduling and materials requirements planning system, free of charge to manufacturers temporarily repurposing their production lines in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
  • Microsoft has created a detailed guide for enabling remote work designed for IT Pros. It can be downloaded from this blog post.
  •  New identity features help empower essential Firstline Workers

Join the community Microsoft Tech Community: Enabling Remote Work

Please see my post Enabling Remote Workers for a categorized overview of resources and my Enabling Remote Workers PointDrive for a more comprehensive list of documentation.

Upcoming Training

Power Apps: Search here for App in a Day workshops, Free online training at Learn

Azure Developer:  events

Office 365 & Teams: Join the  Adoption Monthly Community Calls

Azure: Microsoft Cloud Workshop hosts extensive hands on labs and workshop content

Microsoft Tech News and Product Updates: 5/11/2020

Happy Monday! I hope you had a great weekend.

I want to point out 2 important security changes from last week;

  • We’re extending the ability to use Azure AD single sign-on (SSO) for an unlimited number of cloud apps at no extra cost.
  • Multi-factor authentication (MFA) along with security defaults is free across all Azure AD pricing tiers, so every one of your apps can also be protected.

Product News, Tech Posts & Announcements from last week

Azure Infrastructure
Microsoft announces next evolution of Azure VMware SolutionAzure
Manage and find data with Blob Index for Azure Storage—now in previewAzure
Azure HPC Cache – File caching for high-performance computing (HPC)YouTube
Azure AD Mailbag: What is identity provisioning and why does it matter?Tech Community
Migrate Virtual Desktops to AzureTech Community
How to migrate Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) to Azure and Windows Virtual DesktopMechanics
Business Applications
Power BI Desktop April 2020 Feature SummaryPowerBI
How Microsoft and American Express help merchants battle fraudDynamics 365
Windows
Introducing Surface Go 2, Surface Book 3, Surface Headphones 2 and Surface EarbudsMicrosoft
Microsoft completes new Microsoft Edge browser deployment, experiences performance boostIT Showcase
Getting started: Windows Virtual Desktop ARM-based Azure portalTech Community
App Dev
Minecraft Earth and Azure Cosmos DB part 1: Extending Minecraft into our real worldCloud Strategyv
How to create dev environments in minutes with Visual Studio CodespacesYouTube
Exploring the Microsoft Graph ToolkitChannel9
Query Acceleration for ADLSJames Serra
Microsoft 365
Whiteboarding and Brainstorming in Microsoft TeamsTech Community
Reply All Storm Protection in Exchange OnlineTech Community
Workplace Analytics May 2020 Feature updatesTech Community
Screen Recording For Training Videos and Communications with Microsoft StreamTech Community
Set up a delegate to take your calls in Microsoft TeamsYouTube
How to set up self-service password reset for Microsoft 365YouTube
Security
Protect your accounts with smarter ways to sign in on World Passwordless DaySecurity
Support Tip: Intune Co-Managed Windows 10 Device Apps in Pending StateIntune
Microsoft researchers work with Intel Labs to explore new deep learning approaches for malware classificationSecurity
 
Manufacturing Industry Blog
Supplier Quality Problems During a Global PandemicMBTMag
Introduction to the Azure Sphere OSIoT

View previous weeks news, tech posts and announcements here on Linkedin or follow me on Twitter @MrLouisG

Remote Work Resources

  • Enabling remote work with Microsoft 365 Part 1, Part 2  and Part 3 – Overview on YouTube by Stephen Rose
  • If you own Office 365 and are currently deploying Teams, we have multiple free programs we can offer to assist. If you are interested, we can schedule a 30-minute call to review the available resources.
  • If you have users that are not licensed for Teams, we are offering a free 6-month Office 365 E1 subscription to our clients affected by COVID-19.
  • Microsoft is offering Windows Virtual Desktop at reduced rates.  If you are interested, we can schedule a call to review options.
  • We have created a PowerApps CRISIS COMMUNICATION template and reclassified Push Notifications from premium to standard licensing so you can use the apps full functionality.  Details are available here. Schedule a remote MTC session to review app and provide deployment guidance.
  • To assist our customers and community in their crisis response efforts, we’re extending the Priority Notifications promotion into the second half of 2020. Ongoing access to Priority Notifications will be available to facilitate in crisis response and recovery efforts. After the promotion period ends, licensed users will be able to send Priority Notifications according to the terms of their subscription.
  • Leverage a bot to answer questions and keep employees up to date. Here is a the template for FAQ Plus.  You can find a description of other available templates here.
  •  Build a Crisis FAQ bot using Power Virtual Agents
  • Build a crisis management site in SharePoint to connect people and information here is the blog post and the Look Book so you can add to your tenant.
  • In partnership with Commvault we are offering free data protection for devices through 9/1. Please see offer here.
  • The Microsoft Work from Home Guide can be downloaded from this blog post. This is the guide Microsoft distributed to its employees.
  • Partner PTC is offering use of their AR Remote Assist Product Vuforia Chalk for free through June.
  •  Dynamics 365 Remote Assist allows field technicians and engineers to collaborate with colleagues and experts from different locations, reducing travel and resolving some of the immediate obstacles facing us all. Dynamics 365 Customer Service or Dynamics 365 Remote Assist may be available free of charge for up to 6 months if you are implementing a solution in response to COVID-19, either on a Microsoft-provided template or custom implementation.  
  • User Solutions, a producer of production scheduling software systems, announces it will offer Resource Manager for Excel (RMX), a standalone production scheduling and materials requirements planning system, free of charge to manufacturers temporarily repurposing their production lines in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
  • Microsoft has created a detailed guide for enabling remote work designed for IT Pros. It can be downloaded from this blog post.
  •  New identity features help empower essential Firstline Workers

Join the community Microsoft Tech Community: Enabling Remote Work

Please see my post Enabling Remote Workers for a categorized overview of resources and my Enabling Remote Workers PointDrive for a more comprehensive list of documentation.

Upcoming Training

Power Apps: Search here for App in a Day workshops, Free online training at Learn

Azure Developer:  events

Office 365 & Teams: Join the  Adoption Monthly Community Calls

Azure: Microsoft Cloud Workshop hosts extensive hands on labs and workshop content

Microsoft Tech News and Product Updates: 5/4/2020

Happy Monday! I hope you had a great weekend. Items of note from last week;

Product News, Tech Posts & Announcements from last week

Azure Infrastructure
Enable remote work faster with new Windows Virtual Desktop capabilitiesAzure
Azure Cost Management + Billing updates – April 2020Azure
Learn how to reduce costs with AzureTips & Tricks
Unlimited SSO and new Azure AD features to simplify secure access managementTech Community
Business Applications
Exploring Microsoft Power Virtual AgentsYouTube
Collaborate better with link previews for Power BI in Microsoft Teams (Preview)PowerBI
Windows
Steps to Deploy Edge to Thousands of DevicesMechanics
App Dev
Build is digital and free!Build Site & Registration
Do You Know Azure Cosmos Db Built-In Notebooks?Tech Community
Accessing Managed Instance via SSMSJames Serra
Microsoft 365
What’s New with Microsoft 365 | April 2020YouTube
How leaders can bring employees together during COVID-19Microsoft 365
What’s New in Microsoft Teams | April 2020Tech Community
A Refreshing New Look for Teams Phones!Tech Community
Introducing new Teams certified devicesTech Community
Microsoft Learn Supports Remote Technical SkillingTech Community
Security
New Data Loss Prevention capabilities in public previewBlog
Introducing Azure confidential computingYouTube
New tools to help IT empower employees securely in a remote work world​Microsoft 365
Managing and Securing Devices Utilizing Conditional Access Policies at MicrosoftTech Community
Microsoft Threat Protection will automatically turn on for eligible license holdersTech Community
Using a Zero Trust strategy to secure Microsoft’s network during remote workIt Showcase
Zero Trust Deployment Guide for Microsoft Azure Active DirectorySecurity
 
Manufacturing Industry Blog
Lean Innovation: What Manufacturers Can Learn From the Tech Sector’s Appropriation of Lean ThinkingNIST

View previous weeks news, tech posts and announcements here on Linkedin or follow me on Twitter @MrLouisG

Remote Work Resources

  • Enabling remote work with Microsoft 365 Part 1 & Part 2 – Overview on YouTube by Stephen Rose
  • If you own Office 365 and are currently deploying Teams, we have multiple free programs we can offer to assist. If you are interested, we can schedule a 30-minute call to review the available resources.
  • If you have users that are not licensed for Teams, we are offering a free 6-month Office 365 E1 subscription to our clients affected by COVID-19.
  • Microsoft is offering Windows Virtual Desktop at reduced rates.  If you are interested, we can schedule a call to review options.
  • We have created a PowerApps CRISIS COMMUNICATION template and reclassified Push Notifications from premium to standard licensing so you can use the apps full functionality.  Details are available here. Schedule a remote MTC session to review app and provide deployment guidance.
  • To assist our customers and community in their crisis response efforts, we’re extending the Priority Notifications promotion into the second half of 2020. Ongoing access to Priority Notifications will be available to facilitate in crisis response and recovery efforts. After the promotion period ends, licensed users will be able to send Priority Notifications according to the terms of their subscription.
  • Leverage a bot to answer questions and keep employees up to date. Here is a the template for FAQ Plus.  You can find a description of other available templates here.
  •  Build a Crisis FAQ bot using Power Virtual Agents
  • Build a crisis management site in SharePoint to connect people and information here is the blog post and the Look Book so you can add to your tenant.
  • In partnership with Commvault we are offering free data protection for devices through 9/1. Please see offer here.
  • The Microsoft Work from Home Guide can be downloaded from this blog post. This is the guide Microsoft distributed to its employees.
  • Partner PTC is offering use of their AR Remote Assist Product Vuforia Chalk for free through June.
  •  Dynamics 365 Remote Assist allows field technicians and engineers to collaborate with colleagues and experts from different locations, reducing travel and resolving some of the immediate obstacles facing us all. Dynamics 365 Customer Service or Dynamics 365 Remote Assist may be available free of charge for up to 6 months if you are implementing a solution in response to COVID-19, either on a Microsoft-provided template or custom implementation.  
  • User Solutions, a producer of production scheduling software systems, announces it will offer Resource Manager for Excel (RMX), a standalone production scheduling and materials requirements planning system, free of charge to manufacturers temporarily repurposing their production lines in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
  • Microsoft has created a detailed guide for enabling remote work designed for IT Pros. It can be downloaded from this blog post.
  •  New identity features help empower essential Firstline Workers

Join the community Microsoft Tech Community: Enabling Remote Work

Please see my post Enabling Remote Workers for a categorized overview of resources and my Enabling Remote Workers PointDrive for a more comprehensive list of documentation.

Upcoming Training

Power Apps: Search here for App in a Day workshops, Free online training at Learn

Azure Developer:  events

Office 365 & Teams: Join the  Adoption Monthly Community Calls

Azure: Microsoft Cloud Workshop hosts extensive hands on labs and workshop content

Please reach out to us if you need assistance. Have a great week!

Microsoft Tech News and Product Updates: 4/27/2020

Happy Monday! I hope you had a great weekend. A couple of items of note from last week;

Product News, Tech Posts & Announcements from last week

Azure Infrastructure
Update #3: Business continuity with AzureAzure Blog
Tracking Reservation Utilization | Azure Cost ManagementYouTube
Enhanced features in Azure Archive Storage now generally availableAzure
Have you seen the “My” URLs of Azure Active Directory?Tech Community
Azure Data Explorer and business continuityTech Community
New identity features help empower essential Firstline WorkersTech Community
Business Applications
How Microsoft transformed key Finance audit practices with Azure DevOpsIT Showcase
Explainer: What is a Planetary Computer?YouTube
Start using the Common Data Service on the Power Platform with Ryan JonesChannel 9
Windows
How to configure file associations for IT ProsTech Community
App Dev
Azure Maps updates offer new features and expanded availabilityAzure Blog
Optimize cost and performance with Query Acceleration for Azure Data Lake StorageAnnouncement
Using Azure Functions Premium Plan to avoid cold startsTips & Tricks
Azure DevOps: Update release variables across stagesRajbos
Microsoft 365
Connect people across the entire organization through communities in Microsoft TeamsTeams Blog
How remote work impacts collaboration: findings from our teamJared Spataro
Design your remote work culture with Microsoft Teams appsTeams Blog
How Microsoft Teams will use AI to filter out typing, barking, and other noiseVenture Beat
Security
Azure Security Center enhancementsSecurity
Protecting your organization against password spray attacksSecurity
MITRE ATT&CK APT 29 evaluation proves Microsoft Threat Protection provides deeper end to end view of advanced threatsSecurity
Moving towards real time policy and security enforcementAzure AD Blog
Microsoft Endpoint Manager simplifies deployment of Microsoft Defender ATP for macOSTech community
 
Manufacturing Industry Blog
Flash whitepaper: IT top of mind for Firstline WorkersTech Community
How Star Wars Inspired the Future of Robotics in ManufacturingCMTC

View previous weeks news, tech posts and announcements here on Linkedin or follow me on Twitter @MrLouisG

Remote Work Resources

  • If you own Office 365 and are currently deploying Teams, we have multiple free programs we can offer to assist. If you are interested, we can schedule a 30-minute call to review the available resources.
  • If you have users that are not licensed for Teams, we are offering a free 6-month Office 365 E1 subscription to our clients affected by COVID-19.
  • Microsoft is offering Windows Virtual Desktop at reduced rates.  If you are interested, we can schedule a call to review options.
  • We have created a PowerApps CRISIS COMMUNICATION template and reclassified Push Notifications from premium to standard licensing so you can use the apps full functionality.  Details are available here. Schedule a remote MTC session to review app and provide deployment guidance.
  • To assist our customers and community in their crisis response efforts, we’re extending the Priority Notifications promotion into the second half of 2020. Ongoing access to Priority Notifications will be available to facilitate in crisis response and recovery efforts. After the promotion period ends, licensed users will be able to send Priority Notifications according to the terms of their subscription.
  • Leverage a bot to answer questions and keep employees up to date. Here is a the template for FAQ Plus.  You can find a description of other available templates here.
  •  Build a Crisis FAQ bot using Power Virtual Agents
  • Build a crisis management site in SharePoint to connect people and information here is the blog post and the Look Book so you can add to your tenant.
  • In partnership with Commvault we are offering free data protection for devices through 9/1. Please see offer here.
  • The Microsoft Work from Home Guide can be downloaded from this blog post. This is the guide Microsoft distributed to its employees.
  • Partner PTC is offering use of their AR Remote Assist Product Vuforia Chalk for free through June.
  •  Dynamics 365 Remote Assist allows field technicians and engineers to collaborate with colleagues and experts from different locations, reducing travel and resolving some of the immediate obstacles facing us all. Dynamics 365 Customer Service or Dynamics 365 Remote Assist may be available free of charge for up to 6 months if you are implementing a solution in response to COVID-19, either on a Microsoft-provided template or custom implementation.  
  • User Solutions, a producer of production scheduling software systems, announces it will offer Resource Manager for Excel (RMX), a standalone production scheduling and materials requirements planning system, free of charge to manufacturers temporarily repurposing their production lines in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
  • Microsoft has created a detailed guide for enabling remote work designed for IT Pros. It can be downloaded from this blog post.
  • NEW New identity features help empower essential Firstline Workers

Join the community Microsoft Tech Community: Enabling Remote Work

Please see my post Enabling Remote Workers for a categorized overview of resources and my Enabling Remote Workers PointDrive for a more comprehensive list of documentation.

Upcoming Training

Power Apps: Search here for App in a Day workshops, Free online training at Learn

Azure Developer:  events

Office 365 & Teams: Join the  Adoption Monthly Community Calls

Azure: Microsoft Cloud Workshop hosts extensive hands on labs and workshop content

Microsoft Tech News and Product Updates: 4/20/2020

Happy Monday! I hope you had a great weekend. Please find below an overview of available resources and what’s new at Microsoft we call the Premier Proactive Report.  A couple of items of note from last week;

Product News, Tech Posts & Announcements from last week

Azure Infrastructure
How to configure an Alert Rule with Azure MonitorYouTube
Microsoft extends Azure management to the private cloud with Azure ArcIT Showcase
Business Applications
Modernize field service with Dynamics 365 Remote AssistDynamics 365
Windows
Optimize Windows monthly update deployment for remote devicesIT Pro
Get an edge while working from homeWindows Blog
Office hours: servicing Windows 10 in a remote worldTech Community
App Dev
Writing code and having fun with Rock, Paper, Scissors, Lizard, SpockAzure Friday
Secure the software development lifecycle with machine learningSecurity
Azure Pipelines: Generate release notes using Queriesslothycode
Similarity and Scoring in Azure Cognitive SearchAI Show
Microsoft 365
Nothing can stop a team [This video provides examples of how organizations are adjusting to new normal]Office 365
Multi-Geo reduced seat minimum and expanded geo coverageOffice 365
How to secure your remote workers with Office Cloud Policy ServiceOffice 365
Create and award digital publicly verifiable badges in TeamsTeams
Reach the right people faster with tags in Microsoft TeamsTeams
Updated Rewrite Suggestions in Microsoft Word – sentence-level writing suggestionsMicrosoft 365
Security
Combined MFA and password reset registration is now generally availableIdentity Blog
Security guidance for remote desktop adoptionSecurity
 
Manufacturing Industry Blog
I added “ The Road to Intelligent Manufacturing” to Manufacturing eBooks and WhitepapersMy  PointDrive
Manufacturing’s Finest HourMBT

View previous weeks news, tech posts and announcements here on Linkedin or follow me on Twitter @MrLouisG

Remote Work Resources

  • If you own Office 365 and are currently deploying Teams, we have multiple free programs we can offer to assist. If you are interested, we can schedule a 30-minute call to review the available resources.
  • If you have users that are not licensed for Teams, we are offering a free 6-month Office 365 E1 subscription to our clients affected by COVID-19.
  • Microsoft is offering Windows Virtual Desktop at reduced rates.  If you are interested, we can schedule a call to review options.
  • We have created a PowerApps CRISIS COMMUNICATION template and reclassified Push Notifications from premium to standard licensing so you can use the apps full functionality.  Details are available here. Schedule a remote MTC session to review app and provide deployment guidance.
  • To assist our customers and community in their crisis response efforts, we’re extending the Priority Notifications promotion into the second half of 2020. Ongoing access to Priority Notifications will be available to facilitate in crisis response and recovery efforts. After the promotion period ends, licensed users will be able to send Priority Notifications according to the terms of their subscription.
  • Leverage a bot to answer questions and keep employees up to date. Here is a the template for FAQ Plus.  You can find a description of other available templates here.
  •  Build a Crisis FAQ bot using Power Virtual Agents
  • Build a crisis management site in SharePoint to connect people and information here is the blog post and the Look Book so you can add to your tenant.
  • In partnership with Commvault we are offering free data protection for devices through 9/1. Please see offer here.
  • The Microsoft Work from Home Guide can be downloaded from this blog post. This is the guide Microsoft distributed to its employees.
  • Partner PTC is offering use of their AR Remote Assist Product Vuforia Chalk for free through June.
  •  Dynamics 365 Remote Assist allows field technicians and engineers to collaborate with colleagues and experts from different locations, reducing travel and resolving some of the immediate obstacles facing us all. Dynamics 365 Customer Service or Dynamics 365 Remote Assist may be available free of charge for up to 6 months if you are implementing a solution in response to COVID-19, either on a Microsoft-provided template or custom implementation.  
  • NEW User Solutions, a producer of production scheduling software systems, announces it will offer Resource Manager for Excel (RMX), a standalone production scheduling and materials requirements planning system, free of charge to manufacturers temporarily repurposing their production lines in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
  • NEW Microsoft has created a detailed guide for enabling remote work designed for IT Pros. It can be downloaded from this blog post.

Join the community Microsoft Tech Community: Enabling Remote Work

Please see my post Enabling Remote Workers for a categorized overview of resources and my Enabling Remote Workers PointDrive for a more comprehensive list of documentation.

Upcoming Training

Power Apps: Search here for App in a Day workshops, Free online training at Learn

Azure Developer:  events

Office 365 & Teams: Join the  Adoption Monthly Community Calls

Azure: Microsoft Cloud Workshop hosts extensive hands on labs and workshop content

Lindsey and I value your partnership and we are committed to helping you achieve more.  Please reach out to us if you need assistance. Have a great week!

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