Microsoft has issued critical security updates for Exchange on-premises servers. The fixes close off four known vulnerabilities which expose Exchange to day-zero attacks. It's important to apply these updates ASAP.
Microsoft Teams Connect, a new way of collaboration based on federated shared channels, is now in private preview and should be available later in 2021. The best thing about shared channels is that you don't need to switch tenants to access a channel in another tenant. Azure B2B collaboration (guest accounts) is still important, but this is a brand new way of working that should be very popular.
At the Ignite 2021 event, Microsoft announced that Teams will have multi-geo capabilities later this year. The same $2/user/month uplift as used for other multi-geo workloads applies to Teams. The announcement is not unexpected. Teams consumes services from Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, OneDrive for Business, and Microsoft 365 Groups, all of which are already multi-geo capable.
Microsoft has introduced a first file delete warning in the OneDrive sync client. The new warning is flagged after a user deletes a file in a synchronized location and continues until they turn the warning off. The idea is that people might not realize how the OneDrive recycle bin works. Also in the OneDrive world, Microsoft confirmed that OneDrive for Business supports the 250 GB limit for file uploads some six weeks after the feature was originally announced with some confusion if it applied to business users. Now it does, so all is well.
The Teams admin center now includes the ability to create template policies to control the set of templates shown to users when creating new teams. It's a small but important change that allows organizations to show only the templates it wants to users instead of being forced to show the set of default templates created by Microsoft. New templates are automatically included in template policies.
Microsoft has released several improvements to Teams meetings to make these gatherings more functional and easier to use. The features range from giving video feeds priority in the gallery view to reactions in meetings to allow participants to show what they really think about a presentation. It's all grist to the mill in the battle for corporate online meeting domination between Teams and Zoom.
As some of you might have noticed, Tony Redmond has joined the Practical365.com team to write for the site covering a range of Microsoft 365 topics. We're looking for more writers to join the team. People with fantastic knowledge and insight about how Microsoft 365 technology really works. That kind of thing...
In an utterly predictable move, the SharePoint Online admin center is absorbing the functionality of the OneDrive for Business admin center. Some settings have already moved across and you can expect the OneDrive admin center to go into the great byte wastebasket in mid-2021. This consolidation barely dents the number of admin centers active within Microsoft 365. All of which makes tenant administration more tiresome than it needs to be.
The new Teams Approvals app delivers simple workflow capabilities built on top of Power Automate and Dataverse. The simplicity is attractive and makes the app very easy to use, but maybe it's a little too simple to handle the kind of workflow scenarios proposed by Microsoft. It will certainly be interesting to see how tenants use the Approvals app in their deployments.
Microsoft currently offers people the opportunity to talk to them about the challenges of managing Microsoft 365 Groups. I spoke to the Groups developers on February 18 and brought five requests to the table from dealing with group creation to cleaning up group debris.
Microsoft announced a revised plan to switchover storage of Teams meeting recordings from Stream to OneDrive for Business. The July 2021 switchover will happen for all tenants. In some respects that's a good time of year for a change like this because everyone will be on vacation and much too busy to join and record Teams meetings. At least, that's the plan. What could go wrong?
Nearly seven years after the introduction of Office 365 Groups, Microsoft has finally admitted that tenants might just have a problem with "group sprawl." In other words, tenants have too many underused or unused groups because the groups have been created without oversight and not managed thereafter. Microsoft wants to discuss the problem with tenant administrators. Practical365.com thinks this is a great idea and strongly supports the initiative to get a handle on group sprawl once and for all.