Office 365 Weekly Digest | September 2 – 8, 2018


Welcome to the September 2 - 8, 2018 edition of the Office 365 Weekly Digest.

Thirty-four, yes 34, features were added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week, with 22 of those related to Outlook (Windows, web, Android, Mac, iOS). There are also multiple additions for SharePoint Online and SharePoint mobile, as well as Office 365 Message Encryption. Also, please note the cancellation of automatic processing of small changes in meeting details for Outlook calendar.

The September Azure Active Directory webinars start this week, and the next Teams Tuesday is on September 11th. Also, there is a Microsoft Ask Me Anything (AMA) for Windows 10 and Office ProPlus updates (Moving to the Modern Desktop) on Wednesday, September 12th.

The biggest news last week was an announcement on changes (i.e. extensions) to previously announced deadlines for Windows 10 and Office 365 ProPlus servicing and support. Other blog highlights include a script to sync security group membership with Office 365 Groups / Microsoft Teams, updates on SharePoint view formatting, and lots of new updates to Outlook on Windows and the web.

The OneDrive Message Center recap for the second half of August, general availability of the Office 365 IP address and URL web services, and a flow to retrieve Message Center and Service Health notifications are all last week's items of note.

 

OFFICE 365 ROADMAP

 

Below are the items added to the Office 365 Roadmap last week:

 

Feature ID Title Description

Status

Added

Estimated Release

More Info
32966 Outlook for Mac: Allow meetings to be forwarded Meeting organizers have an option to allow or disallow their meetings to be forwarded to others.

In development

09/06/2018

September CY2018

n / a
32971 Outlook for iOS: Time to leave preview in calendar events Preview of the (intelligent, location based) departure time for an upcoming event at any time in the calendar event and quickly get directions with one touch.

In development

09/06/2018

October CY2018

n / a
32646 Outlook for Mac: Office 365 Message Encryption Protect email content with Office 365 Message Encryption in Outlook for Mac.

In development

09/06/2018

October CY2018

n / a
32615 Outlook for Android: Comment when canceling meetings Have the option to add a comment to your meeting cancelation message.

In development

09/06/2018

October CY2018

n / a
32614 Outlook for iOS: Comment when canceling meetings Have the option to add a comment to your meeting cancelation message.

In development

09/06/2018

October CY2018

n / a
27556 Outlook for Android: External recipient warning Receive a tip when composing a message to a recipient that is outside your company.

In development

09/06/2018

October CY2018

n / a
27555 Outlook for iOS: External recipient warning Receive a tip when composing a message to a recipient that is outside your company.

In development

09/06/2018

October CY2018

n / a
27391 Outlook for Android: Access Group notebook Launch the Group's OneNote notebook from the Group card in Outlook for Android

In development

09/06/2018

October CY2018

n / a
27389 Outlook for Android: Group calendar events View the Group calendar events from the Group card in Outlook for Android.

In development

09/06/2018

October CY2018

n / a
27288 Outlook for Mac: Search results without typing Suggested results provided with one click in the Search box based on recent search and email history.

In development

09/06/2018

October CY2018

n / a
27277 Outlook for Windows: Manage events with large audiences Allow organizers to update or cancel events with over 500 attendees.

In development

09/06/2018

October CY2018

n / a
27266 Outlook for Windows: Suggested people in Search Suggestions of relevant people are provided while typing your Search query.

In development

09/06/2018

October CY2018

n / a
27264 Outlook for Windows: Most relevant Search results on top Intelligent technology generates the most relevant results and presents it at the top of the list without duplicating results that are sorted by date.

In development

09/06/2018

October CY2018

n / a
33169 Office 365 Message Encryption: More flexible admin control for attachments As a follow up to https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/Security-Privacy-and-Compliance/Admin-control-for-attachments-now-available-in-Office-365/ba-p/204007, administrators can now additionally control whether any recipients have unrestricted rights to their attachments when the Encrypt-Only template is used.

Launched

09/07/2018

Q3 CY2018

n / a
27922 Advanced Data Governance: Auto-Classify Records Now you will be able to auto-classify your content as a record based on detection of sensitive data using a custom query or existing sensitive data types. Use this to extend Records Management governance in your organizations via auto-applications or the record designation within SharePoint, Groups, OneDrive and sites in Microsoft Teams.

Launched

09/07/2018

Q2 CY2018

n / a
27133 Outlook on the web - User Experience Refresh A new faster, smarter, and more personalized Outlook on the web experience is coming to Office 365 commercial licenses. We will start rolling out the ability to try this new experience to Targeted Release customers first.

In development

09/07/2018

September CY2018

n / a
27315 Outlook on the web - suggested replies For messages that can be addressed with a short response, Outlook suggests three related responses so you can reply with just a couple of clicks.

In development

09/07/2018

September CY2018

n / a
27265 Outlook for Windows: Spelling corrections in Search Outlook will provide a suggested search query with spelling corrections.

In development

09/07/2018

September CY2018

n / a
33432 Groups in Outlook - Removal of footnote in group emails We are removing clutter from group emails by removing the footnote in the emails you receive when you are following a group in your inbox. The footnote gave followers a direct link to stop following the group in their inbox. Following a group is the default value when someone creates a group but can be modified when creating it, if people want to stop following a group they have to do so from the group card now.

In development

09/07/2018

September CY2018

n / a
33430 Microsoft Bookings - data export for reports We are adding a link in the Home page of Bookings - "Export more data as a TSV" so you can download a tab delimited file with a row for each event on the booking calendar for the previous 90 days and the upcoming 90 days (3 months back and 3 months forward). Each row includes the Date/Time info for the event, the customer name, customer email, customer phone #, customer address, staff assigned, service selected, location, and appointment duration.

In development

09/07/2018

September CY2018

n / a
32978 Build Single Page Application with MSAL.js As a JavaScript developer, you can now: - Register your single page application in the Azure portal - Benefit from quick start samples during application registration to help you get a working application in minutes - Leverage Microsoft Authentication Library for JavaScript in your plain JavaScript app, as well as with AngularJS or Angular 4+ frameworks Developers no longer need to choose between the Azure AD v1.0 endpoint (supported by ADAL.js) and the Azure AD v2.0 endpoint since MSAL.js will be on parity with the ADAL.js.

In development

09/07/2018

September CY2018

n / a
31524 Office 365 Message Encryption: Encrypt-Only template available in Office 365 Unified DLP New capabilities in Office 365 Message Encryption uses encryption and rights protection to help you protect and control your sensitive emails. We are adding new value into Office 365 Message Encryption so you can create a data loss prevention (DLP) policy in the Office 365 Security and Compliance Center to identify, monitor, and automatically protect sensitive email messages and Office attachments by applying Encrypt-only template.

In development

09/07/2018

Q3 CY2018

Encrypt-Only option for emails
32572 Outlook for Android: Support shared mailboxes Access shared mailboxes from Outlook for Android to read, write and send messages as well as a shared calendar experience.

In development

09/07/2018

Q2 CY2019

n / a
32571 Outlook for iOS: Support shared mailboxes Access shared mailboxes from Outlook for iOS to see read, write and send messages as well as a shared calendar experience.

In development

09/07/2018

Q2 CY2019

n / a
26734 Outlook for Mac: Enhanced contact card information Select a contact's name in a message or calendar event to see their photo, phone number, email, recent conversations, and more.

In development

09/07/2018

Q1 CY2019

n / a
32767 Outlook for Android: act on one message within a conversation thread Take action on a single message from within a conversation thread.

In development

09/07/2018

Q1 CY2019

n / a
32764 Outlook for iOS: Act on one message in a conversation thread Take action on a single message from within a conversation thread.

In development

09/07/2018

Q1 CY2019

n / a
26828 Outlook for Windows: Customize quick actions Choose any two options to customize the quick actions you can take when responding to messages: flag, delete, archive, move, mark as read or select none.

In development

09/07/2018

Q1 CY2019

n / a
33473 SharePoint and Teams: SharePoint web parts as tabs in Teams We're working towards directly exposing SharePoint web parts as tabs in Microsoft Teams - including their configuration options. Now, your custom development can be used in more places throughout your organization's collaboration and communication efforts.

In development

09/07/2018

October CY2018

New improvements for SharePoint Framework coming soon
33472 SharePoint web part: countdown timer Site owners and members will now be able to show a countdown timer to important launch dates, key meetings, campaign ends, etc. on their site home page, within subpages and/or within a news article on team sites, communication sites and hub sites. Simply add the web part to your page or news and tap in the target date and time to count down to. And voila, everyone can see how much time until that important date and time.

In development

09/07/2018

October CY2018

n / a
33471 SharePoint mobile: create a News link from an external source With News links, you can now bring in news articles from external sources. And now you can do this from your mobile device through the SharePoint mobile app. The News link feature gives you the option to paste in an external URL. And then it generates a thumbnail and gives you the option to adjust the primary text. Once you save it, the news article goes into the SharePoint news service as a new News article. And when a person clicks on it, they will be taken to the original source to read the article.

In development

09/07/2018

October CY2018

n / a
33470 SharePoint mobile: @mentions in comments When viewing a news article within the SharePoint mobile app, you can now directly @mention a person from within your organization and they will be notified - aka, drawn into the article and your response to further engage on what's happening around you. Bring people into the discussion - @mention them.

In development

09/07/2018

October CY2018

n / a
33469 SharePoint mobile: organizational news support As you tap into the SharePoint mobile app News tab, you'll now see support for organizational news - which brings more greater control, process and reach to how news can be published throughout your organization.

In development

09/07/2018

October CY2018

n / a
33166 Microsoft Secure Score controls include compliance data Controls in Secure Score will include compliance information on how they map to GDPR, ISO, and NIST compliance requirements.

In development

09/07/2018

October CY2018

n / a
30674 Outlook calendar - automatic processing of small changes in meeting details When a meeting organizer updates a meeting details that do not affect the date/time/recurrence pattern (I.e. add Skype for Business meeting link), Office 365 will automatically process and add the changes to the invitees' calendars without requiring the invitees receiving a meeting update in their inbox and having to respond again to the meeting invite. You will be able to customize the logic for what details should be auto-processed for your organization, and which ones should continue to be shown as a meeting update in the invitees' inboxes. At this time, we are not going to provide an option in Outlook for the organizer to choose how updates go out.

Cancelled

05/30/2018

Q2 CY2018

n / a

 

UPCOMING EVENTS

 

Microsoft 365 Engineering Webcast: Improvements in Office 365 endpoint publishing and network connectivity guidance

When: On-demand, registration required | Microsoft is updating the publishing of Office 365 network endpoints and has new guidance about optimizing network connectivity for end users to achieve optimal performance. In this talk we will describe the new network principles and guidance and share how the updated endpoint publishing makes end user performance easier to achieve. We will outline the timeline and transition from the current manually published data to the new system and how customers can take advantage of this. | Resource: Office 365 endpoint categories and Office 365 IP Address and URL web service

 

Teams Tuesdays

When: Tuesdays, August 21, 2018 – October 30, 2018 from 10am – 11am PT | Whether you're managing a new project or starting your own business, it helps to have a team behind you to brainstorm ideas, tackle the work together, and have some fun along the way. Now you can use Microsoft Teams to do just that. Join our team LIVE every Tuesday from 10-11am PDT to learn how you can get started with the free version of Teams. In this hour, we'll walk you through the product and key features, share best practices for getting started, and answer any questions you may have. We look forward to meeting you!

 

Azure Active Directory Webinars for September

When: Multiple sessions currently scheduled from September 11 - 20, 2018 | Are you looking to deploy Azure Active Directory quickly and easily? We are offering free webinars on key Azure Active Directory deployment topics to help you get up and running. Sessions include Getting Ready for Azure AD, Azure AD Identity Protection and Privileged Identity Management, Streamlining Password Management using Azure AD, Securing Your Identities with Multi-Factor Authentication, and more. Each 1-hour webinar is designed to support IT Pros in quickly rolling out Azure Active Directory features to their organization. All webinars are free of cost and will include an anonymous Q&A session with our Engineering Team. So, come with your questions! Capacity is limited. Sign up for one or all of the sessions today!  Note: There are also some sessions available on-demand.

 

Ask Microsoft Anything (AMA): Move to the Modern Desktop - Windows 10 and Office ProPlus Updates

When: Wednesday, September 12, 2018 at 12pm ET | We are very excited to announce a Move to the Modern Desktop: Windows 10 and Office ProPlus Updates AMA to answer questions around our recent announcement. The AMA will take place on Wednesday, September 12th, 2018 from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. PT. An AMA is a live online event similar to a "YamJam" on Yammer or an "Ask Me Anything" on Reddit. This AMA gives you the opportunity to connect with members of the product engineering team who will be on hand to answer your questions and listen to feedback. Join in the FastTrack AMA space, or add it to your calendar. We look forward to seeing you there!

 

Productivity Hacks to Save Time & Simplify Workflows

When: Wednesday, September 26, 2018 at 12pm ET and 3pm ET | This 90-minute hands-on experience will give you the opportunity to test drive Windows 10, Office 365 and Dynamics 365. A trained facilitator will guide you as you apply these tools to your own business scenarios and see how they work for you. During this interactive session, you will: (1) Discover how you can keep your information more secure without inhibiting your workflow, (2) Learn how to visualize and analyze complex data, quickly zeroing in on the insights you need, (3) See how multiple team members can access, edit and review documents simultaneously, and (4) Gain skills that will save you time and simplify your workflow immediately. Each session is limited to 12 participants, reserve your seat now.

 

BLOG ROUNDUP

 

Helping customers shift to a modern desktop

IT is complex. And that means it can be difficult to keep up with the day-to-day demands of your organization, let alone deliver technological innovation that drives the business forward. In desktop management, this is especially true: the process of creating standard images, deploying devices, testing updates, and providing end user support hasn't changed much in years. It can be tedious, manual, and time consuming. We're determined to change that with our vision for a modern desktop powered by Windows 10 and Office 365 ProPlus. A modern desktop not only offers end users the most productive, most secure computing experience—it also saves IT time and money, so you can focus on driving business results. We're pleased to make three announcements that help you make the shift to a modern desktop: (1) Cloud-based analytics tools to make modern desktop deployment even easier, (2) A program to ensure app compatibility for upgrades and updates of Windows and Office, and (3) Servicing and support changes to give you additional deployment flexibility. Note: This post includes details on changes (i.e. extensions) to previously announced deadlines for Windows 10 and Office 365 ProPlus servicing and support.

 

Branding SharePoint: The New Normal

Modern SharePoint is catching on, and sites are looking better than ever right out of the box. With mobile-ready pages and easier editing, customers and partners are starting to ask for it. And as SharePoint 2019 brings the modern experience on premises, the demand is likely to grow even more. Yet even as sites look better than ever "out of the box", there are constraints on how they can be customized. Partners and customers who want to completely change the look sometimes run into these boundaries and get frustrated. NOTE: In this article, customization means changing SharePoint's behavior or rendering in ways not built into SharePoint, generally using some kind of code. Configuration means changing SharePoint's behavior or rendering using settings and content. This article will explain what you can and can't customize on modern SharePoint pages and why. It will also offer alternatives for those who absolutely must color outside the lines.

 

Syncing Security Groups with team membership (Office 365 Groups / Microsoft Teams)

Issue: If you add a security group to a team membership list, Teams will do a one-time expansion of the security group (same for a distribution list), but any subsequent changes are not reflected in the team, and vice versa. Obviously, a great solution would be to base the team membership directly on a security group, so that any changes to the security group are reflected in the team in Microsoft Teams, and vice versa. This would be similar to how Teams leverages the Office 365 Groups service. The engineering team is aware of this request and it is marked as on the backlog. You can provide additional input on the use case and priority via the User Voice feedback system, item 1861385. Similar user feedback has also been provided to the Office 365 Groups team, and you can read and vote on their feedback system too, item 33942997. But while we wait for those engineering teams to get to this work (and deal with a thousand other demands on their time), let's take a look at a short-term solution that will unblock companies looking to synchronize security group membership with team membership. The premise is straightforward: create a PowerShell script that will run periodically, maybe every 12 hours or 24 hours, which synchronizes one or more pairs of security group/Office 365 group.

 

Building immersive user experiences with SharePoint view formatting

Last May, at SharePoint Conference 2018, we previewed new user experiences built with view formatting (previously called "row formatting"). It's based on the column formatting feature introduced last year, which allows you to format the appearance of individual columns using JSON. The view formatter enables you to customize the entire SharePoint list view experience using a similar JSON-based approach. You can use this feature to apply conditional formatting to list and library rows, or create entirely new immersive list and library experiences. We recognize that JSON, while not technically code, can be a delicate format to write. That's why we've also introduced a new parser that works with Excel-like expressions for both view formatting and column formatting. Custom view formatting will be rolling out to commercial customers in September 2018.

 

New Outlook updates enable you to customize your experience and help you stay focused and organized

Last fall, we launched a beta program with Outlook.com to provide a preview of the web experience updates and an easy way to switch between the new and classic web experiences at any time. More than 10% of our users tried it out and two thirds kept it on through to the general availability launch and we received a ton of great feedback through that program that helped us understand how to deliver the right experience to you. Now, we're pleased to announce "Coming Soon" in Outlook for Windows and an opt-in toggle in Outlook on the web that puts you in control of when you try major updates. These new features allow you to explore updates, return to the classic experience at any time, and continue to provide us with feedback. In June, we announced Office 365 user experience updates. We are now ready to start rolling out these changes in Outlook for Windows and Outlook on the web using the Coming Soon and opt-in toggle features. Building on the same guiding principles, our goal is to give you control, allowing you to try a new experience when it's convenient, customize how you get things done, as well as surface options that are relevant and in context to how you work, all to help you get things done, faster.

Related:

 

NOTEWORTHY

 

OneDrive Message Center Updates for August 16 - 31, 2018

Currently the team is hard at work, putting the finishing touches on some new features and functionality that we'll be showing off at Ignite. With that said, we will not be releasing any product updates or Message Center posts till after the Microsoft Ignite conference. Before we sign-off though, we do have one update to the OneDrive service that you may be interested in! We're making even more improvements to the photos experience on iOS with the introduction of Super Zoom! This feature started rolling out to customers in late August 2018. | Related: Microsoft Ignite 2018 OneDrive Sessions

 

Announcing: Office 365 endpoint categories and Office 365 IP Address and URL web service

Updated: September 5, 2018 for General Availability | The IP Address and URL web services are generally available from 5th September 2018. Microsoft recently published a set of connectivity principles for Office 365 which provides concise guidance on the recommended ways of achieving optimal performance and connectivity to Office 365. The first of these principles is to Identify and differentiate Office 365 network traffic using Microsoft published endpoints. Endpoints include IP Addresses and URLs that are used to connect to Office 365. The key benefits of using these web services are that they share the endpoint categories which significantly simplify network perimeter configuration, they are fully automated including automated validation testing them, they can be loaded directly into network devices, and they help automate change management to avoid change related outages.

 

Advanced | Flow of The Week: Retrieving Office 365 Message Center and Service Health Notices using Microsoft Flow

To automate critical business processes in Office 365 using Microsoft Flow, we typically need to call cloud-based services in order to retrieve data. Calling these services often requires us to use the HTTP connector and action, and as a result, provide our TenantID, along with an App's ClientID and SecretID in the Flow. This blog post will provide a detailed walkthrough of configuring these required parameters when calling cloud services using the HTTP connector. We'll use a recently released Flow template as an example, which retrieves data from the Office 365 Message Center and Service Health dashboards.

 

Cloud App Security: Monitor & protect your data in ALL your clouds, NOW!

Think your organization is operating in a secure and compliant manner? How do you ensure your sensitive data is protected across all the clouds in your environment, whether it's Office 365/G-Suite/Box/Salesforce/etc.? Do you have a single pane of glass view of when someone shares a file from one of those clouds to someone outside the organization? What about login traffic to those cloud apps? Do you have visibility into your Shadow IT and understand which apps in the environment are storing data overseas or aren't compliant with an industry regulation such as HIPAA or GDPR? Watch the 3-minute video for an overview on Cloud App Security in Microsoft 365 - this is the tool that will make you the hero in your organization and help ensure you operate in a secure and compliant manner! | Related: Why you should enable MFA RIGHT NOW!

 

Security: Protecting user identities

It's not just a problem for consumers. Identity theft in the workplace is also on the rise—and with good reason. Stealing employee credentials is an easy path to bypassing security around sensitive data, making unauthorized purchases, and many other cybercrimes. Microsoft 365 security solutions help you protect users and corporate accounts. By making identity the control plane, Microsoft 365 offerings manage identities as the first step to providing access to corporate resources and restricting users who are high risk. Tools like single sign-on (SSO), Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA), and Windows 10 Hello for Business help you secure access. Additionally, there are actions you can take if an identity is compromised and ways to lock down or wipe devices to protect sensitive data in case of loss or theft.

 

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