Speaking at abtis Microsoft Bustour 2019

Soon, I’ll speak at the Microsoft Germany HQ in Munich (09/07/2019). The event and speakers cover different topics all around the digital future, e.g. modern teamwork, interactiv conferencing systems, AI, bots, big data/analytics, hybrid data center. The event is organized by abtis and Microsoft. It’s really extraordinary because attendees and speakers not located in Munich will travel by bus to Microsoft Munich and can take the chance to ask and discuss during the time in transit.

I’ll talk about digitize and automate processes. My session “Prozesse digitalisieren und automatisieren” is about Microsoft Flow, SharePoint Online and Office 365. I’ll focus on Microsoft Flow to automate processes and I show a demo to provide an understanding of what Flow can do for you to easily digitize and automate processes.

Additional Resources

Advertisements

Microsoft Teams on VDI

In this post I like to make some notes on news regarding Microsoft Teams in virtual desktop infrastructures (VDI).

In general, Microsoft Teams is partially supported in VDI under certain circumstances, e.g. disabling different media workloads via Teams Policies. (Cp. “Teams for Virtualized Desktop Infrastructure”)

However, this will cause that an user cannot use Teams on a non-VDI-client with all features because the Teams Policies are applied to a Teams User and not a device or do not dynamically check if the client is on a VDI or not.

As you might know from Skype for Business times, you can run Skype for Business with all workloads on VDI by using on Citrix HDX. This bypasses media workloads and offloads it from the VDI, i.e. the media flow can flow directly towards Teams instead of traversing the VDI infrastructure. This helps to offer a much better performance and user experience instead of “squeezing” all the media traffic via the VDI and finally causing an unsatisfactory user experience.

Citrix provides good news in the below docs on how Teams traffic via Citrix VDI can be optimized via its Citrix Workspace app and the Virtual Delivery Agent (VDA). For more I recommend to read the details in “Optimization for Microsoft Teams”. It includes also a more detail drawing showing how the media workloads will directly flow to the Microsoft Teams backend and not via the VDI.

Conclusion, opinion and summary

I think that these are good news for many companies out there which rely on VDI and want to do more with Microsoft Teams. Now there is a option for media workload support within VDI. So, implementation and adoption of Teams with its media capabilities can now proceed in (Citrix) VDI environments in a support way. Of course, as usual, plan, ensure that the (technical) requirements are meet and test it thoroughly before rolling it out. At last but not at least, don’t forget communication to users and options for user training etc.

Additional Resources

Let you call by a Microsoft Teams Meeting

In this post I like to notify about a neat feature for all Teams users which are often on the move and need to join an online meeting while being in transit.

Microsoft Teams provides a feature called “Call me”. It allows you to make an online meeting call you on a phone number of your choice. E.g. before or during an online meeting you can select that you want to be called for that meeting. You can select this as you join an online meeting. You can do this upfront, before the online meeting starts or during it takes place.

Conclusion, opinion and summary

The feature might be already known from Skype for Business online meetings. It’s really handy if you are just about to leave a place and maybe go to your car/public transport/… and want to have your hands free, so you can pre-join an online meeting and set a call me. Finally, you only need to answer the incoming call on your cell and your in the online meeting.

Additional Resources

Manage Group Calling and Call Delegation in Microsoft Teams (as Admin)

In this post I like to describe how you can manage group calling and call delegation in Microsoft Teams as admin.

First of all, I’d like to explain what these two features can do for you or your users:

Group call pickup allows a Teams (phone system) user to select other Teams users to answer his/her call. E.g. Erik Doe get’s a call on his Teams phone number and his other co-workers which he added previously to his group pickup get a notification about the incoming call and can answer it instead.

Call delegation allows to configure delegation for your telephony, similar to what you might know for mail delegation. I.e. this enables you for typical and lightweight boss/admin or manager/assistant or chef/sek (de) capabilities. E.g. Erik Doe can add one ore more other Team (phone system) user as delegates so that Erik Doe does not need to deal with all calls himself.

Configure group call pickup as an user

Users can configure this on the Teams settings \ call settings page.

Configure group call pickup as an admin

In the Teams Admin Center you can configure group call pickup per user. You can add/remove users to a users group call pickup, you can set the notification mode (mute, ring, banner) and you can configure the order and when group call pickup to listed users in a users group kicks in.

Teams Admin Center \ Users \ <user> \ Voice \ Group call pickup

Configure call delegation (boss/admin, manager/assistant, chef/sek) as an user

Users can configure this on the Teams settings \ general \ delegation settings page.

Configure call delegation (boss/admin, manager/assistant, chef/sek) as an admin

Also in the Teams Admin Center you can configure call delegation per user. You can add/remove delegates, you can define what permissions a delegate gets and if a delegate can change this setting (or need to call you to change it via Teams Admin Center).

Teams Admin Center \ Users \ <user> \ Voice \ Call delegation
Teams Admin Center \ Users \ \ Voice \ Call delegation \ permissions

Conclusion, opinion and summary

Compare to Skype for Business (Server) this is a very nice administration capability because it’s easy to access and manage. In the past with Skype for Business (Server) you had to use Sefautil, related Sefautil tools or even third party software for an more comfortable way of administrate user call settings. It’s very helpful from time to time to have a ability as admin to change these two settings for an user which might be unable to do this.

Managing Teams Call delegation and group call pickup via the Teams Admin Center works like a charm in my opinion.

Additional Resources

Automatically mount SharePoint Team Site Libraries for OneDrive sync in File Explorer

Microsoft rolls out a new capability which enables administrator to automatically mount / add a specific SharePoint Team Site Library being synced for users (cp. M365 Roadmap).

M365 Roadmap – Feature ID 27031 (June 2019)

Configure SharePoint Team Site Libraries Auto-mount

To configure the auto-mount you need to configure a group policy which configures the users OneDrive sync settings. (cp. link “Configure team site libraries to sync automatically”)

Prereqs, requirements and limitations

Please note that there are certain prereqs, requirements and limitations before you can start.

  • Windows 10 1709 or later
  • Library must have below 5000 files/folders.
  • Not for 1000+ devices
  • Sync is applied next time the user signs in but it can take some time until the sync starts.
  • A user cannot stop the sync.
  • You need the OneDrvie GPO Template (OneDrive.adml, ..admx) in your central GPO store (e.g. erik-klefeldt.de\sysvol\domain\Policies\PolicyDefinition) …
  • This might be subject to change (June 2019).

Configuration steps overview

  1. Create a new GPO
  2. Configure the GPO based on your needs, applied to a OU and add WMI-filtering for a more granular scoping, if needed
  3. Add the SharePoint Team Site Library ID to the GPO
  4. Verify that the GPO is applied
  5. (Verify the reg key [HKCU\Software\Policies\Microsoft\OneDrive\TenantAutoMount]”LibraryName”=”LibraryID”)
  6. Verify that it syncs on the devices

Conclusion, opinion and summary

Easy to configure, isn’t it? In my opinion it might help you to move and simplify a migration from legacy files shares to SharePoint Online. It enables you as administrator to manage a smooth transition from file shares/services towards SharePoint Online and really adds a convenient way and comfortable user experience because your users do not need to manually add the library to their OneDrive sync and “map” the SharePoint Online Team Site Library on their device.

Additional Resources

Microsoft Teams Licensing Notes

There are many options for licensing Microsoft Teams depending on the capability requirements for users, devices and rooms. In this post I like to point out some “special” licensing options besides the normal ones for Teams in enterprises.

The hereinafter described license options might be subject to change. Moreover not all licenses or subscriptions are available in every country around the globe, especially calling plans and audio conferencing (shortened: Audioconf.).

Teams Licensing Basics

  • Microsoft Teams is just a single service of the massiv Microsoft 365 services stack which it tightly linked and integrated within this service stack.
  • Microsoft Teams is part of a “packaged” Microsoft Office 365 subscriptions by default.
  • Microsoft Teams replaces Skype for Business (Online). The Skype for Business Desktop Client within Office 365 ProPlus is also obsolete, meaning that new (full) Office 365 ProPlus installation will get a Teams instead of a Skype for Business Client.

The following slides and drawing are intended to provide you with an overview on licensing options. I also point out what you should take into account in case of Teams Direct Routing (TDR), in this post and following drawings I call a TDR scenario a “hybrid” scenario.

Telephony with Teams (for users)

Overview (May 2019)

Call Queues (CQ) and Auto Attendants (AA)

Call Queues (CQ) and Auto Attendants (AA)

Teams Common Area Phone (CAP)

Teams Common Area Phone

Teams Meeting Room

Teams Meeting Room

Conclusion, opinion and summary

The above drawings quickly depict how you can license users, common area phones, meeting room devices and even call queues or auto attendants for Microsoft Teams.

Microsoft is working on an enhanced licensing model for applications like cloud CQ/AA [as you can read in “Manage resource accounts”]. Still, at present user licensing applies for cloud CQ/AA.

Additional Resources

Microsoft modern communications webinar series

Microsoft initiated a webinar series by Microsoft communication leaders and HR to share insights and challenges regarding modern communication and cultural transformation. There are several webinars from May, 16 to June, 26, 2019. The contents are, for instance, communicating better, storytelling, empower employees, effective internal communication, employee feedback and optimized communication on employee feedback.

Additional Resources