Azure Active Directory (Azure AD)

How to find out the Directory ID of your Azure AD tenant?

This article explains in extremely short way, how to fetch your Azure Active Directory tenant’s Directory ID. Let’s make it short and sweet, because quite frankly, it is really simple! Solution Option 1: Use whatismytenantid.com for finding your tenant/directory id: Quick solution – works (at least) for all standard tenants: Navigate to https://www.whatismytenantid.com/ Enter the domain associated with your Azure AD instance (often like contoso.onmicrosoft.com) Let ShareGate do their magic and find your tenant/directory id for you! Thanks to Thomas Vochten for pointing this out…Continue reading How to find out the Directory ID of your Azure AD tenant?

Microsoft SQL Server logo

How to clean up duplicates from MS SQL Database?

This article explains how to query and remove duplicate entries from a Microsoft SQL database using T-SQL. The same model works both for Azure Databases (in Azure SQL Query Editor) and databases on MS SQL Server (using SSMS – SQL Server Management Studio). Background Why bother? That’s a (somewhat) valid question. A table in a SQL database can have quite a few rows as long as you have plenty of storage space available. The number of rows might (technically speaking) be limited by the maximum…Continue reading How to clean up duplicates from MS SQL Database?

Microsoft Teams Logo

Tips on organizing an online conference using Microsoft Teams

Writing this in a country under lockdown, it feels like every single conference in the world has either been cancelled or switched to being online-only. And right now, that’s definitely for the best! But it does pose quite a dilemma for those in charge of these events – how do you organize an event for potentially thousands of attendees, online? How do you foster great interaction between the audience and speakers? How do you encourage your attendees to mingle as well? How do you avoid…Continue reading Tips on organizing an online conference using Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams context in SharePoint Framework client-side code.

Why you shouldn’t attach files from other channels in Microsoft Teams?

This article will describe a surprising issue with Microsoft Teams, and a simple workaround. 😊 Essentially, using the out-of-the-box “Attach” > “Recent” messaging extension in Teams has a couple of caveats or edge cases, that make it problematic to use. Instead, either move the file to the proper location using the “Files” tab, or share a link to your file (also available under “Attach” > “Browse Teams and Channels”). This post will describe the actual solution for moving the file safely, without data loss. Problem…Continue reading Why you shouldn’t attach files from other channels in Microsoft Teams?

How to change the delimiter when exporting CSV from Excel?

Recently, I needed to find a way to import data from an Excel to a custom-coded system that could import CSV files. However, the data was fairly unsanitized – containing commas, semicolons and other weird characters. I could define the delimiter used in the imported data – however, to do that, I needed to also be able to define it in the export. What’s a “CSV” -file ? Stands for “comma-separated values” – A text file that uses a comma to separate values. Each line…Continue reading How to change the delimiter when exporting CSV from Excel?

Microsoft Stream

Office 365 video migration to Office Stream imminent – Get Ready!

While this post will mostly be about the highly topical migration from Office 365 Video to Microsoft Stream, there’s also a fair amount of rambling about Microsoft’s partner strategy and a bit of history included. I’m starting with the main stuff and then proceeding to the ranty parts, so just skip the last 75% of the post if you don’t care about that kind of stuff! On to the content, then! Microsoft Stream is taking the world by storm There’s been a lot of buzz…Continue reading Office 365 video migration to Office Stream imminent – Get Ready!

Android Recovery Mode

How to use TWRP to flash an Android device that refuses to boot to TWRP?

Last Christmas holiday I was tasked by older relatives to fix an Android tablet they had bought. One of those absolutely useless, 100€ devices that can’t really run any apps, and struggle to even start. My first proposition was to return the device – but it was already past the return window. Lenovo‘s bloated nightmare-version of an Android was likely the biggest reason for slowness. My second course of action was to change the launcher and disable everything I could, but the device still couldn’t…Continue reading How to use TWRP to flash an Android device that refuses to boot to TWRP?

SharePoint Localization - You can have your content in different languages for different users.

Classic SharePoint blogs are going away – what next?

So the interesting news are not over – Microsoft recently announced that their personal blogging platform for Office 365, Delve Blogs, is getting retired. Now it turns out Classic SharePoint blogs are also getting cut. This leaves some organizations in a bit of a tough spot – what to use for blogging from now on? In this article, I’m taking a look at what brought us here, and thinking about our next steps from here on forward. Background Okay, then – what brought us here?…Continue reading Classic SharePoint blogs are going away – what next?

Delve logo

Delve Blogs getting deprecated – what do?

Last week, Microsoft sent a surprise email to a number of customers. Delve blogs – the hated & loved self-serve internal blogging platform on Office 365 is getting axed. It doesn’t really come as a surprise at this point – the service was first announced in 2014, launched to some hype and appreciation (especially due to the new CMS – authoring canvas – which was a lot of fun compared to Classic SharePoint!) but has pretty much faded away after that. Microsoft describes the feature…Continue reading Delve Blogs getting deprecated – what do?

SharePoint Hub sites - like how Microsoft themselves put it! (From: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint/planning-hub-sites)

SharePoint Home, Hub, Sites, Start… What?

This article explains the current terminology Microsoft uses around your different pages in SharePoint. Or at least tries to – and do that in a way that’s faithful to the current, flat & Modern world. Microsoft has been known for their less-than stellar track record of figuring out easy and descriptive names for their products. Let me introduce 2 cases in point: Microsoft® WinFX™ Software Development Kit for Microsoft® Pre-Release Windows Operating System Code-Named “Longhorn”, Beta 1 Web Setup” – that’s a mouthful! Or for…Continue reading SharePoint Home, Hub, Sites, Start… What?

PowerShell not loading them DLLs

How to resolve issues when loading DLLs in PowerShell?

This post describes a few different things that can (and will) go wrong when you’re trying to load DLLs in PowerShell, and a couple of ways you can try to fix them. Typically, you’d run into an error message like “Exception calling LoadFrom with 1 argument(s): Could not load file or assembly…. “ These issues most typically arise when you’re running a PowerShell script that depends on certain DLLs to be loaded (to then execute some of the methods from them). This could happen kind…Continue reading How to resolve issues when loading DLLs in PowerShell?

PowerShell commandlet "new-unifiedgroup" - The alias is being used by another group in your organization. Please try a different alias.

How to resolve the error “The alias is being used by another group in your organization”

Okay – another simple one. When you’re creating a new Office Group (or “Unified Group”, like they’re called as well), you might get an error for the alias already being used. Pretty simple, but still – let’s see how to fix it. Problem So, this error pops up, while you’re trying to create a new Office Group: The alias is being used by another group in your organization. Please try a different alias. An example script & output is shown below: # Historically, Groups have…Continue reading How to resolve the error “The alias is being used by another group in your organization”

Azure Active Directory (Azure AD)

“Connecting to site failed: ‘.’, hexadecimal value 0x00, is an invalid character.”, when trying to connect to SharePoint Online

This was a peculiar case! A cloud-based “service account” (in quotes, since it’s really just a non-personal user account) on a tenant with ADFS enabled started suddenly getting this error, while running console programs configured as scheduled tasks. Connecting to site failed: ‘.’, hexadecimal value 0x00, is an invalid character. Posts Related to “”Connecting to site failed: ‘.’, hexadecimal value 0x00, is an invalid character.”, when trying to connect to SharePoint Online”:The Scary Anatomy of a Microsoft License Fraud5 ways to enable Custom Scripts for…Continue reading “Connecting to site failed: ‘.’, hexadecimal value 0x00, is an invalid character.”, when trying to connect to SharePoint Online

SharePoint PnP logo

Another fix to “Connect-PnPOnline : The sign-in name or password does not match one in the Microsoft account system.”

This post describes a simple way to get around the following error while running Connect-PnPOnline: “The sign-in name or password does not match one in the Microsoft account system.” Truthfully, this one is kind of simple and stupid – but as I’ve seen before, it’s surely worth documenting anyway! Below is an example of such error. PS C:\> Connect-PnPOnline https://contoso.sharepoint.com/sites/CommunicationSite/ Connect-PnPOnline : The sign-in name or password does not match one in the Microsoft account system. At line:1 char:1 + Connect-PnPOnline https://contoso.sharepoint.com/sites/CommunicationS … + ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~…Continue reading Another fix to “Connect-PnPOnline : The sign-in name or password does not match one in the Microsoft account system.”

How to revert Modern view back to Classic for SharePoint libraries using PowerShell

If your customers are anything like ours, some of them love the new modern library view, some will adjust and some just hate it and want to get as far away from it as possible. While embracing the new stuff is usually smart, there’s some value to sticking to what works as well. The Modern view is going to be the superior choice of the two (if it isn’t already!), but there are a multitude of reasons why one might want to revert to the…Continue reading How to revert Modern view back to Classic for SharePoint libraries using PowerShell

"Chrome SP Editor" -about page

SharePoint Search Console – Now available inside Chrome SP Editor!

This post is about two of my favorite tools: Chrome SP Editor, and SharePoint Search Query tool. Or maybe better yet, an amalgamation of the two! Description I’ve mentioned the Chrome SP Editor before, and for a good reason. It’s a great tool for any IT Pro or Dev working with SharePoint on a daily basis. It’s maintained by a very talented developer, one of the people behind Valo Intranet, Tomi Tavela. If you’re using the tool, let him know on Twitter! But I’m not…Continue reading SharePoint Search Console – Now available inside Chrome SP Editor!

Microsoft SQL Server logo

Easily querying all the database and log file sizes on SQL Server

Quite often you get the need to simply quickly query all the database sizes on MS SQL Server – most typically, for us, this need arises when a development machine gets low on disk space, and we need to check if some database’s log size has been growing, or if something else is wrong. In my daily work, I rarely encounter this requirement anymore. Azure has almost entirely obliterated the need for such diagnostics, since it’s so easy to spin up or scale up new…Continue reading Easily querying all the database and log file sizes on SQL Server

Microsoft Privacy

What is “fp.js” – and why is it snooping on your SharePoint usage?

Microsoft is gathering all kinds of telemetric data out of the usage of SharePoint. I ran into an interesting JavaScript file, fp.js, on SharePoint Online doing just that. Gathering data. It loads on pretty much every single page request, so it’s something you’ll bump into anytime you open your developer tools! Your customer’s IT might even inquire about it – perhaps wanting to disable it for perfomance or information security gains? But what is fp.js and what does it do? Posts Related to “What is…Continue reading What is “fp.js” – and why is it snooping on your SharePoint usage?

If you could just fix SharePoint... That would be great.

Solving yet another “Microsoft.SharePoint.Client.ServerException: Unknown Error”

There’s maybe a thousand things that can throw an “Microsoft.SharePoint.Client.ServerException”, but a bit smaller amount of things, that are ambiguous enough to be called “Unknown error”. This post describes one, fairly usual fix for this issue! But let’s get back to the beginning for a second – you get what and when now? When running any code, that provisions new sites (much like https://www.koskila.net/new-pnpsite-fails-with-sitestatus3/), you get an error like this almost immediately: Microsoft.SharePoint.Client.ServerException: Unknown Error at Microsoft.SharePoint.Client.ClientRequest.ProcessResponseStream(Stream responseStream) at Microsoft.SharePoint.Client.ClientRequest.ProcessResponse() at Microsoft.SharePoint.Client.ClientRequest.ExecuteQueryToServer(ChunkStringBuilder sb) at Microsoft.SharePoint.Client.ClientContext.ExecuteQuery()…Continue reading Solving yet another “Microsoft.SharePoint.Client.ServerException: Unknown Error”

Get-Command -Module AzureRM.Profile. You're seeing it correctly - it doesn't have a Logout-AzureRmAccount, Disconnect-AzureRmAccount, Remove-AzureRmAccount or even Remove-AzureRmContext commandlets! That's a lot of fun :)

Oh no! PowerShell cached my Azure credentials and I messed up wrong customer’s environment!

Whoops. Could happen to anyone, since the Azure PowerShell since (approximately) version 6.3.0 will cache your credentials between sessions without warning you. It’s really easy to run your commands with cached accounts, and end up executing your scripts against the wrong environment. In less serious cases, this means that you’ll end up running commandlets twice against the test environment, while you think you’re running them first against test, and then production. In more serious cases, you’ll deploy your ARM templates or run your cleanup scripts against wrong…Continue reading Oh no! PowerShell cached my Azure credentials and I messed up wrong customer’s environment!