Recent articles


Improving performance for bulk PnP PowerShell scripts


I have been a little quiet on this blog recently and while the stress of the pandemic with lots of kids at home has played into that, another large part has been a painful migration project. I have learnt plenty about the scales of SharePoint Online and reminding myself of the limitations of SharePoint 2010 - I really had forgotten how painful it was considering servers! One of the biggest areas though has been the validation. While the migration tooling gives us some information, we have been running lots of PnP PowerShell scripts for both creating structures and also validating that content has migrated correctly. Having tens of thousands of sites and libraries brings its own challenges.

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Knowledge Management Series - Introduction to Viva Topics


Autumn came and went. Christmas and the end of the year came and went. 2021 started but still there was no sign of Project Cortex. Vaccines appeared and hope for an end to the pandemic being in sight. But still no Cortex. No knowledge hubs. What could be wrong? Were there problems? Would we see it happen. Now we know the answer and the answer is Microsoft Viva. And I like it.

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Do you need a standalone device for Teams? - Evaluating the Lenovo ThinkSmart View


A few weeks back, I was lucky enough to have been given the opportunity to try out the Lenovo ThinkSmart View, a standalone device dedicated to Microsoft Teams. Many of you may be thinking “erm, why would you want that?” and the simple answer (which I’ll expand on in a minute) is performance. Too many times has Teams rendered my machine unusable and I spend a large chunk of my day in meetings. Would this improve my experience?

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Issue with Microsoft Groups not syncing for SharePoint Site


I hit a strange issue this week but today had that massive buzz of solving it. Sometimes it is the simple things that you’ve missed but other times (like this one), it is something very odd. The problem was that I had a set of around 1000 migrated sites that had come from SharePoint 2010 and should have been set up as Modern sites. They appeared to be but the SharePoint Groups had retained the old names, i.e.

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Sharing the etiquette of Microsoft 365


Last week, myself and my fellow co-hosts of GreyHatBeard were joined by Luise Freese, Vesa Nopanen and Karoliina Kettukari at Collab Days Munich/Vienna as we shared our thoughts on the etiquette of Microsoft 365. It was a fun format with plenty of chance to laugh at the same time as attendees picking up some great ideas as we ran through three questions that each person had 90 seconds to answer.

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Creating a custom Microsoft Search connector with Logic Apps


Microsoft has been speaking for some time about the power of Microsoft Search and the ability to have one place to search for all your content. This has gradually been coming more and more true but one of the areas that has not been widely available has been the ability to add your own custom content to the index. However, that is now possible and allows developers to bring content into search alongside other content. In this post, I will run through two ways of doing this but both will require development experience, including a sample from the graph team and then my own example using Logic Apps to consume Twitter content.

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Knowledge Management Series - Introduction to SharePoint Syntex


With Microsoft Ignite 2020 (Sep 22-24) came more Knowledge Management news and the biggest one of these (at least as far as most people were concerned) was the first widely available service from Project Cortex. Rather than release one big service to organisations, Microsoft has listened to feedback and will be releasing different services under the Project Cortex banner and from October 1, you will be able to add SharePoint Syntex to your E3 and E5 licenses - but what is it?

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Knowledge Management Series - Creating a culture of knowledge


Culture - something many people are accused of lacking and something organisations strive to have. It’s a hard thing to actually define though. When it comes to knowledge management though, it’s a little simpler as what I am talking about is does your organisation encourage the sharing of information? Are people rewarded for working collaboratively and retaining the knowledge for the good of the organisation? Or are people encouraged to focus on themselves, hoarding information and not understanding the culture of sharing?

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Knowledge Management Series - Organising knowledge


Organising can seem such a boring word. Organising is the opposite of spontaneous, it’s the planned dinner you can’t be bothered with instead of the quick pint after work that turns into an epic night out. It’s what the young you is terrified that you will turn in to. It is also what makes things just work. It is what makes you be able to be productive, to be able to get on with what you need to do and be the most effective you can be. It’s the front-row seats at the O2 after hours spent with multiple windows to get the tickets. But yeah, it is still a bit boring.

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Knowledge Management Series - Considering where knowledge is stored


There are many ways to start a knowledge management journey such as starting in one specific area of your organisation, focusing on a set of key stake holders or just building a business case for the value of a large scale program of work. For this series, I will focus first on where your knowledge is stored, considering the different areas and ways that information can be held. This will help you later to consider how you make use of that information to help the right people at the right time.

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Knowledge Management Series


Have you heard about Project Cortex? The upcoming service from Microsoft that will help organisations to better manage their internal knowledge by using the best of breed content services such as SharePoint, OneDrive and Microsoft Search. Your current reaction probably sits in one of three places if you live in the Microsoft space:

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Using Microsoft Search with a SPA


Microsoft Search was announced as the single search for finding items across the whole of the Microsoft 365 world back in 2017 during the Ignite that year. One backend to reference so that no matter where you search from, you get the same results back. That’s the promise and that is gradually coming to fruition. I will cover more on how this looks in SharePoint but this post will look in to the Dev side - how can Microsoft Search be used in a SPA (aka Single Page Application - sorry, no massages here)?

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The Etiquette of Microsoft 365 - a GreyHatBeard initiative


Have you ever wanted a set of policies around how people should use Office 365/Microsoft 365? Do you find yourself repeating the same little bits of advice to people again and again and again? We’re not talking about adoption specifically here, more about “Hey, you should always make sure you reply to a conversation in Teams rather than starting a new one” or “Keep files just for you in OneDrive and move them to the appropriate team’s SharePoint when you want to work together”. Wouldn’t it be great if there was a place to get all these useful suggestions in one place?

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