Earlier this year, we announced two new offerings for customers that basically need specific security & compliance capabilities.

  • Identity & Threat Protection—This new package brings together security value across Office 365, Windows 10, and EMS in a single offering. It includes best of breed for advanced threat protection services including:
    – Microsoft Threat Protection (Azure Advanced Threat Protection (ATP)
    – Windows Defender ATP
    – Office 365 ATP including Threat Intelligence
    – Microsoft Cloud App Security
    Azure Active Directory

This offer will be available for $12 per user per month.*

  • Information Protection & Compliance—This new package combines:
    – Office 365 Advanced Compliance
    – Azure Information Protection

    It’s designed to help compliance and IT teams perform ongoing risk assessments across Microsoft Cloud services, automatically protect and govern sensitive data throughout its lifecycle, and efficiently respond to regulatory requests leveraging intelligence.

This offer will be available for $10 per user per month.

Read the announcement here:

imagePreviously only available in Microsoft 365 E5 & Office 365 E5, “Microsoft MyAnalytics” has been added as a component to Microsoft 365 E3 & Office 365 E1/E3

Microsoft MyAnalytics delivers “People Analytics” & summarizes how you spend your time at work, then suggests ways to work smarter—from cutting unproductive meeting time to reducing time spent working after hours. It even uses artificial intelligence (AI) to help you stay on top of your to-dos by flagging commitments you’ve made in email.

MyAnalytics information surfaces information to the end user through 3 features:

  • personal dashboard
  • Outlook add-in
  • weekly emails

The availability of MyAnalytics is as follows:

With today’s updates, MyAnalytics features will be available for Microsoft 365 E3, Business, and Office 365 E3, E1, Business Premium, and Business Essentials plans. MyAnalytics functionality will roll out in phases, beginning with the Outlook add-in. Beginning February 12, 2019, MyAnalytics licenses will be assigned and activated; however, users will not be able to see any MyAnalytics functionality. The add-in functionality will begin rolling out on March 12, 2019.

To read the full announcement, visit:

imageIn an article we at Microsoft wrote on our “On-the-Issues” blog entitled,  “The fight against tech support scams”, we highlighted the need to be vigilant against Tech Support scams attempting to extort vulnerable or trusting individuals.

Since then 3 major carriers have made spam/scam call filtering/blocking technology available at no cost.

For 3rd party solutions, read the following article for a summary of other options:

imageGet the technical resources, documentation, and code samples you need to support all areas of your data estate—from discovery and research to implementation and maintenance. With SQL Server 2017, you’ll gain the flexibility to deploy the industry-leading performance and security of SQL Server to your favorite platform. Provide your information once to access the entire SQL Server technical e-book series, including:

  • Book 1—SQL Server Performance: faster querying with SQL Server

Learn about speed, scalability, and other built-in SQL Server features that deliver faster processing capabilities. Explore in-memory online transaction processing (OLTP), a memory-optimized database engine integrated into the SQL Server engine that can significantly improve application performance. Other topics include: columnstore indexes, lightning-fast analytics, and automatic tuning features like adaptive query processing.

  • Book 2—Drive business continuity with SQL Server

Explore high availability (HA) and disaster recovery (DR) strategies to maintain business continuity and minimize unplanned downtime and data outages. Walk through the two most common continuity solutions: mirroring—at the database level—and clustering—at the server level. Discover the rich SQL Server feature set of availability groups, failover cluster instances, and log shipping capabilities. Find out how instances of SQL Server can be made highly available on both Windows and Linux using the same features.

  • Book 3—SQL Server on Linux: A guide to re-platforming and modernizing your data workloads

Get the definitive guide on re-platforming for heterogeneous environments—combining operational databases, data warehouse, and various data sources to drive insights. Familiarize yourself with cross-platform and migration tools along with use-case demos of the cutting-edge technologies and enterprise-grade features now available in open-source and mixed-shop (Linux + Windows) environments. Topics include: columnstore indexes, in-memory technologies, high availability, graph data extensions, Adaptive Query Plan, and enhanced security features.

Download the entire SQL Server technical e-book series:

Yesterday, we released a great guide for deploying Azure Information Protection Deployment Acceleration Guide

Deploying Azure Information Protection from a technical standpoint is a fairly simple task.  Where it becomes challenging is when you begin looking at the business requirements that must be in place prior to deployment of AIP.

Because of this, we (the Information Protection Customer Experience Engineering Team) have developed this guide to assist customers with the acceleration of AIP from a business perspective.  While there is a fair amount of reference to technical details in this document, it is not intended to be an end-to-end project plan for full deployment. Rather, it is a guide to help business decision makers and IT implementers understand the best ways to deploy Azure Information Protection and to avoid mistakes that could cause delays in rollout.

In this guide, we cover the four phases of the Information Protection lifecycle and provide guidance on how to approach each of these phases.


By breaking down these phases into easy to follow sections, you can begin to see that there are actions you can begin taking today to improve your security posture and reduce risk related to protecting your company’s sensitive information.

This guide is available online as a PDF at https://aka.ms/AIPDAG

We welcome feedback regarding this guide. We have created a form at https://aka.ms/AIPDAGFeedback for this purpose.  We truly hope this will help you accelerate your deployment of AIP and help reduce the risk of compromise of your sensitive data.


The Information Protection Customer Experience Engineering Team

Original post here:


Interested in Power BI?

imageCome join us on March 12, 2019 for the Quarterly Los Angeles PowerBI User Group (LAPUG) meeting.  A great opportunity to learn about PowerBI and network with peers.

  • 12:00 PM – 01:00 PM 
    Lunch and Networking *
  • 01:00 PM – 01:15 PM 
    LAPUG Logistics and Planning
  • 01:15 PM – 02:00 PM 
    First Speaker
  • 02:00 PM – 02:15 PM 
    Questions and Break
  • 02:15 PM – 02:45 PM
    Second Speaker
  • 02:45 PM – 03:00 PM 
  • 03:00 PM – 03:15 PM
    Wrap-Up and planning for next Meeting

* Lunch will be shared between Dynamics GP and PowerBI user groups for co networking. 

PowerBI meeting will follow GPUG meeting and all are welcome to attend both events.

  • When: 
    Mar 12, 2019 from 12:00 PM to 3:15 PM (PT)

Associated with  Los Angeles Power BI User Group

  • Location:
    Microsoft Technology Center – Playa Vista, CA
    13031 W. Jefferson Blvd.
    Suite 200
    Playa Vista, CA 90094

For more event information:

Group information:


Microsoft Stream is the successor to Office 365 Video and will supplant Office 365 Video through a migration process, documented online, in 4 phases:

  • Phase 0 – Beta customers (Started 6/2018)
    Limited to beta customers willing to help test/verify the transition. Stream product group validates a customer is ready and eligible to move and then runs the scripts manually on the backend for the customer.
  • Phase 1 – Tenant Admin Opt-in (2019 Q1)
    Limited to customers in specific regions who are not using the Office 365 Video REST APIs, Office 365 integrations (Delve, SharePoint Home, SharePoint mobile, Enterprise Search), and are comfortable with other differences between Office 365 Video and Stream. See more details about the migration experience for this phase.
  • Phase 2 – Tenant Admin Opt-out (TBD)
    Applies to all customers in all regions. If the tenant admin doesn’t opt out of the transition their tenant will be transitioned over to Stream during this phase.
  • Phase 3 – Automatic Transition (TBD)
    All remaining Office 365 Video customers will be automatically transitioned over to Stream.

For more information on the migration from Office 365 Video to Microsoft Stream, visit the following pages:

(Thanks to Microsoft Modern Workplace Technology Specialist, Grant Earl, for this pointer)

Want to know how to identify & manage all the Power BI/Power Platform Gateways in your organization?


The Power Platform On-premises Data Gateway acts as a bridge, providing quick and secure data transfer between on-premises data (data that is not in the cloud) and the Power BI, Microsoft Flow, Logic Apps, and PowerApps services.

You can use the Power Platform Admin center to get visibility into all on-premises data gateways in a tenant.

Once in the Power Platform Admin Center, the “Data Gateway” page lists all on-premises data gateway clusters installed on the tenant. (Requires being a Azure AD tenant Global Admin or Office 365 Global Admin for the Data Gateway page to be visible)

In addition, you can review the following information about these clusters:

  • Gateway Cluster Name: The name of the gateway cluster.
  • Contact Info: Admin contact information for the gateway cluster.
  • Administrators: The list of gateway administrators.
  • Gateways: The number of gateway members in the gateway cluster.

Administration allows you to:

  1. Add or remove gateway admins
  2. Search all gateway clusters, view their details, and administer them

For more details, read the docs pages here:

imageThe Microsoft Flow Conference was an amazing event, full of useful demos, great humor and mountains of valuable information!

We had 16 sessions ranging from beginner to intermediate all the way to into advanced techniques. We also had sessions that focused on the community, on real world scenarios and even about non-connected connectors.

Here’s some of the sessions posted online:

  • Meet Microsoft Flow  – Melissa Hubbard
  • Flow Buttons | What & How – Jerry Weinstock
  • PowerApps And Flow, Better Together – Mark Stokes
  • How we use Microsoft Flow: Real world use cases  – Sandro Pereira
  • 5 Tips when Introducing Microsoft Flow to your customers  – Kent Weare
  • Microsoft Flow’s unconnected connectors – Sandy Ussia
  • Upgrade your skills: Modern out-of-box Approvals – Laura Rogers
  • Use your on-prem data with Microsoft Flow – Daniel Glenn

Read more about the online sessions here:

Posted by: kurtsh | January 23, 2019

INFO: Determining entitled Software Assurance Benefits

Calculating expected Software Assurance benefits for purchases made on volume licensing agreements sometimes feels like a voodoo science.  This is in some ways because:

  1. There are several different benefits granted (Planning Services, Training Vouchers, 24/7 Problem Resolution Support, etc.)
  2. The grant sizes of each benefit differs depending on two things:
      1. The number of “Software Assurance Benefits (SAB) Points’ accrued by the volume of total eligible product licensed on the agreement
      2. A specific scale for that benefit – and this differs for each benefit.

For example:

  1. A total number of SAB points can be calculated per agreement or per purchase.  Here’s an example of the point calculation table. (This can CHANGE to refer to the current “Product Terms” documentation – not this table.)
  2. For a given benefit, such as “Planning Services Days”, there is a scale for how many days are granted based on the volume of SAB points attained.
    The table below is an example of the scale used for Planning Services days grants.  (The table below may not be accurate so refer to the “Product Terms” documentation for actual quantities.)

The documentation for what benefits exist and how they are granted is located in the “Microsoft Product Terms” documentation, published & updated monthly for download as a Word .DOC document on the Microsoft site.

In the January 2019 English publication of the Product Terms, page 78 has the information on Software Assurance Benefits.

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