Received my 3rd MVP Award #Office365

Great news this weekend in my mailbox! I received my 3rd MVP award for ‘Office Servers and Services’. A lot of people always ask me what a MVP is and does. On Wikipedia their is a great article about this. This is the short version:

Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) award is given to “exceptional, independent community leaders who share their passion, technical expertise, and real-world knowledge of Microsoft products with others.”[1] The awarded are people who “actively share their … technical expertise with the different technology communities related directly or indirectly to Microsoft”. An MVP is awarded for contributions over the previous year.

Read more here.

Great to serve the community for another year again!

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My first impression about Microsoft Teams for Education – with assignments function!

Last weekend Microsoft had launched the specific add-on for classrooms in Microsoft Teams. A few of my current customers are using Microsoft Classroom. So I was curious about the functionality in this new service. First of all; it’s integrated in Microsoft Teams, that’s already a plus. Students and teachers are loving Microsoft Teams (and me too), with all the integrated services and now also their assignments!

How does it work?

First of all, if you create a new team you get now an extra option, create a class:

createteamclass

Than you will get the option to add students and teachers to the class:

createteamclass2

And the new class is created. In the top level you will see two new items in Microsoft Teams, the Class Notebook and Assignments:

teamsstartpage

Under Assignments you can create a new assignment:

assign

You have several options as teacher:

Titel of the assignment
Instruction of the assignment
Due date and time for the assignment
Late turn in allowed (so later then the due date)
Points yes / no; if yes you can create your own scoring model (this is currently quite simple)
Attach materials and specify what the student has to turn in as assignment.

Then you can click on assignment and the assignment has published to the student. As a teacher you will have an overview witch assignments are schedules:

overviewinteam

As a teacher you have also an overview over all assignments in all teams. In the navigation left you see ‘Assignments’ if you click on that you will get that overview:

overviewassignemnts

Now from a student perspective. If you login to Teams as a student you will also have the overview of all assignments you have. If we go to the demo classroom you will find there the assignment we just created. The thing I am missing here, I don’t see any update in the conversation view of the team, that an assignment is created for the class. So I really have to go to assignments to see new assignments. I don’t see any notification in teams that I have a new assignments. I think there needs to be some work on that. Student will not click to see if there is something new, please make a notification message (like with chat) in the ‘Assignments’ on the left, so students can be notified on new assignments.

The student can add their work to the assignment, reference materials and turn the assignment in:

studentview

Once it’s turned in, the student can turn in it again.

Also the teacher don’t get any notification in Teams that the student has returned their assignment. If she/he will go to the assignment the review button will show the students that have turn in their homework/assignment:

review

They can check the student work, give feedback and give points!

Final thoughts

I think it’s a great step as Microsoft to create a service like this in Teams. There need to be some work on the notification side within teams for assignments. As a student I don’t want to look for new assignments. I don’t get a notification in Teams, I don’t see anything in my conversation view. I hope as a partner we get the API’s to extend this functionality for local customers. In the Netherlands we don’t always work with points, so can we add a own scoring model to the service?

 

New preview of Microsoft OneDrive sync client

Finally! If you are running the latest build of Windows Insider, you can now download the latest preview version of OneDrive sync client. Why?

2017-06-13_19-30-07

Finally we can see files or folders that are not synced with the cloud, native in Windows 10! If you install the new preview client, a new column (status) is added in the explorer of Windows. You can see the two icons in above screenshot. The green icon is that the files / folders are synced with my local laptop. The cloud icon is showing the files/folders that are not synced, but they are accessible like a local folder/file, like synced files/folders!

You can enable this via the settings of OneDrive:

od-settings.jpg

Have fun with it!

Big updates for Office365 this month

Microsoft released today some big update for Office365.

  1. Co-authoring in Excel; Users in the fast ring of Office365 will get this update today. With this update in Excel you can co-author directly in Excel with your co-workers.

Co-authoring is being shown in Excel. A dropdown in the top right explains that Alex is also working in the spreadsheet, and which cell he is in. A red box surrounds the cell Alex is in, with a red flag over it showing his name. Alex’s red indicator moves to another cell, and then a change which Alex made to the cell and a graph can be seen showing up a moment later.

 

2. Microsoft Teams is general available; finally also for Education is Microsoft Teams available in every O365 tenant.

3. Microsoft Bookings will rolling out worldwide; a great tool for managing appointments and schedules in Office365 will be available for customers outside of U.S. and Canada

4. OneNote inking in the browser! You can now annotate in OneNote Online!

The new Draw tab with inking tools is being shown in OneNote Online, with ink annotations added to various parts of an image in a biology notebook page.

5. Microsoft Visio integration with Excel and PowerPoint;

 

The new Data Visualizer templates and Slide Snippets pane are being shown in Visio. A Cross Functional Flowchart is shown being created from an existing Excel workbook. Then the Slide Snippets pane is shown being used to select multiple areas of the Visio flowchart to export as snippets on individual slides in PowerPoint.

 

You can create snippets from Visio to PowerPoint to make great presentations!

Screenshot of the Slide Snippents pane in Visio with two slide previews shown.

More news you can read here.

How to work together in Office 365 – Sites, Groups and Teams

Somewhere in Q2 2017 Microsoft Teams will come general available! So it’s time to create a blog about this great new functionality for education (and off course other verticals).
First, what is Microsoft Teams?
Microsoft Teams is a new functionality in Office 365 (currently not available in the EDU tenants); it’s a chat based workspace and much more than that. As a team of people, you can collaborate on a specific topic or your assignment for school. You can chat, video call, share documents, create tasks and much more. It’s an extension on the already release Office groups. I will explain the service more later in this blogpost.
But we have also sites, groups and now teams?
Yes, it’s for ‘normal’ users difficult to understand all the different tools Office 365 is currently offering for team collaboration. We started a long time ago with team sites, then Yammer, then Office Groups was announced and now again a new tool, Microsoft Teams. Depending on your needs you should choose the right service. Gladly Microsoft is more and more integrating the several services and you can scale up from one service to the other. Below a table which service you could use,from my opinion. I have marked them separately (when you have a team, you will have a group…, but I only mark the service). More + signs the functionality is better. And off course this will change over the time
MSTeams5
Microsoft Teams – a scenario
The great thing I love of this new service is the integration of a lot of Office365 services. As a student or teacher, I have one overview of all information regarding an assignment or classroom in one place! In this example I use Microsoft Teams together with an intern we have at our company. We collaborate with him via Microsoft Teams, a great scenario!
Conversations
The first thing after you created a new team, you see the conversation window. In this window, you can chat with your intern / or students in the group. But this is not only chat, you can see changes of documents or other things you do in your team. The great thing about this conversation view, is if a new teacher is involved, she or he, can see the history! One other thing you can do, is setup a direct videocall to your student or teacher (with integration of Skype for Business). Below a screenshot of the start screen of teams (sorry it’s with Dutch content)
MSTeams1

Every team can have several channels / subjects. If you create a new channel a ‘sub team’ is created, with their own conversation, files, etc. So you can order your information. The files are saved in a SharePoint site, and every channel has its own folder.

Files and OneNote
I love OneNote in Education. Within a Microsoft Team you have automatically a OneNote file for your team where you can share your notes. We share the plan for the intern in OneNote, so we can collaborate on his plan. Off course I connect this OneNote with my Full OneNote client on my laptop, so I have it directly available.
MSTeams2.png
Planner
One other great future for education is Planner. With this service you can great an interactive action list for your students. With boxes, you can sort your action items how you like and move tasks between the boxes.

Other integrations
The great thing about Teams is that you can integrate other services really easy. On the plus sign, you can add new services. Below some samples:

MSTeams4.png

Office documents: You can integrate Excel, PowerPoint, Word and OneNote in your team
Planner: you can integrate new or existing Planner in your team
SharePoint: you can integrate your intranet of other SharePoint Online sites
YouTube; you can integrate learning materials from YouTube
Power BI: if you use Power BI for reporting you can integrate
PDF: you can show PDF documents directly in your team
Stream; the new Office 365 video service
Website: you can integrate your websites or scheduling system

After creating a new service it will added to the top navigation of your team, below after adding a Planner service:
MSTeams4.png
If you Office365 tenant has this functionality enables please go to: https://teams.microsoft.com  to start with your team! EDU customers have to wait for the rollout in their tenant.

Power BI om inzicht te krijgen in je Azure AD

Microsoft heeft een mooie nieuwe toevoeging gemaakt in Power BI om inzicht te krijgen in het gebruik van je Microsoft Active Directory. Hiervoor hebben ze de Microsoft Azure AD Power BI content package gemaakt. Vanuit Power BI kan je dit content package nu selecteren:

2017-01-23_14-54-01

Hiermee is het mogelijk om:

  • Gebruik van applicaties
  • Trends rapportages over applicaties
  • Inloglocaties van gebruikers

011917_0047_adminsrejoi1

Lees meer hier.

Presentatie Office365 UG Sessie

Gisterenavond waren we te gast bij Winvision voor de eerste Office365 Usergroup van het jaar. Ik vond het een gezellige avond waarbij ik weer veel nieuwe mensen heb leren kennen en goede feedback ontvangen waardoor we de volgende meeting nog beter kunnen doen.

CZQtQEcWcAAW2eE

De volgende is al gepland en is in april, waarschijnlijk 14 april bij Sparked.

Voor de mensen die niet bij de gebruikersgroep konden zien, kunnen hieronder mijn presentatie downloaden:

O365 UG januari 2016 v2

 

Nieuwe preview van OneDrive Sync is beschikbaar voor iedereen

Sinds vandaag is het mogelijk voor iedereen om de nieuwe preview OneDrive Sync client te downloaden. Klik hier om de nieuwe preview client te downloaden.

In het kort nog even de verbeteringen:

  • Syncen is een stuk betrouwbaarder 🙂
  • Je kan eindelijk in OneDrive For Business kiezen welke mappen gesynchroniseerd worden
  • De client ondersteund zowel de OneDrive als OneDrive For Business accounts
  • Je kan meerdere OneDrive for Business toevoegen aan je sync client
  • IT beheer kan de client beter beheren / beleid uitvoeren.

 

Ik werk er ondertussen al twee maanden mee en ik ben heel erg tevreden over de snelheid en betrouwbaarheid van deze nieuwe sync tool!

Office365 Outlook Groups Connectors?

Een van de nieuwe functionaliteit die gelanceerd gaat worden binnen Office365 Groups zijn connectoren. Als je nog niet weet wat Groups zijn, dan kan je deze blogpost even lezen.
Met Connectoren(Connectors) is het mogelijk om in je feed van een Outlook Group andere informatie binnen te laten zien, denk hierbij aan Twitter, RSS feed, Trello etc etc.

Even een concrete voorbeeld: Je gaat een evenement (bijv. een open dag) organiseren. Je maakt dan normaal gesproken een Outlook Group aan in Office365 waarmee je met je marketingcollega’s samenwerkt aan het evenement. In je feed komen allerlei berichten(mail, documenten etc) binnen, maar dat is alleen maar informatie wat binnen Office365 leeft.Je wil natuurlijk ook de berichten die binnenkomen op je twitter account direct erin tonen die over het evenement gaat. Daar komt Connectors naar boven!

Zie hieronder een voorbeeld van een Demogroup, waarin ik een Twitter en RSS feed gekoppeld heb aan mijn group.

o365connectorgroupos8

Ik heb de screenshot gemaakt net na het toevoegen van de connectoren, dus er zijn niet direct berichten te zien (alleen als er nieuwe items zijn op Twitter of de RSSfeed)

Om dit nu zelf te gaan proberen op je Eigen tenant, dien je ingelogd te zijn in Office365 en de onderstaande URL te openen:

https://outlook.office.com/owa/#path=/mail&EnableConnectorDevPreview=true

Hiermee komt de optie Connectors beschikbaar binnen Groups
o365connectorgroupos

Door op connectors te klikken, krijg je alle beschikbare connectoren op dit moment (twitter is er net afgevallen) te zien:

o365connectorgroupos2

 

Door op Add te klikken, kan je bijvoorbeeld Twitter toevoegen in je feed:

o365connectorgroupos9

Afhankelijk van je dienst krijg je instellingen. In Twitter kan je een account of hashtag volgen. Daarnaast is het in te stellen dat je retweets en mentions laat zien. Zo heeft elke connector zijn eigen instellingen.

Door op save te klikken wordt de connector toegevoegd aan je feed:

o365connectorgroupos10En vanaf nu als er een nieuwe #PowerApps beschikbaar komt op Twitter, wordt hij hier getoond.

Het mooie is ook (voor ontwikkelaars) dat ze Webhooks ondersteunen.

o365connectorgroupos11

Hiermee is het mogelijk om data van je eigen systemen informatie te laten sturen naar je Group Feed. Zo is het dus mogelijk om huiswerk of taken naar je Groupfeed te sturen (let op iedereen ziet dit natuurlijk)o365connectorgroupos12

 

 

Beheren van Sway in Office365

 

Sway is een mooie tool om presentaties mee te maken (lees hier mijn blogpost over dit onderwerp). Een van de nadelen was dat Sway altijd aanstond voor gebruikers in Office365. Je had dus eigenlijk geen controle over wat gebruikers daarin deden. Gelukkig zijn (of worden binnenkort in je tenant) de volgende wijzigingen doorgevoerd:

1. Je kan nu Sway per groep of per person aanzetten. Hierdoor verdwijnt de tile in de applauncher voor gebruikers die niet Sway mogen gebruiken.

 sway
Door Sway (onderin) uit of aan te zetten, krijgen gebruikers geen of wel Sway. Je zet dus eigenlijk gewoon de licentie uit of aan, zoals met de andere diensten.
Mocht je problemen hebben dat mensen die geen licentie hebben, wel de tile zien, verwijs ik graag naar dit support artikel:
2. Je kan bepaalde diensten die je in Sway kan gebruiken uit- of aanzetten. Denk hierbij aan het integreren van YouTube, Twitter etc etc in je Sways. Dit kan je nu dus eigenlijk beheren.
3. Sway is een dienst, je kan nu op he adminpanel ook zien of de dienst beschikbaar is.