Do you use Outlook & Exchange?  Have you ever been told:

  • “Hey, I tried scheduling a meeting with you but can’t see your free/busy in Scheduling Assistant.”
  • “I can’t see your calendar.”

Their view of your free/busy looks something like this:


Meanwhile, you have granted READ access with FULL DETAILS by default to everyone, like this:


The fix is pretty simple & it has nothing to do with your Exchange email account. 

The problem is with the cached entry on the other person’s Outlook instance for your email address.  It’s out of date & needs to be deleted.

Simply have the other person do the following: (Again, this is not done on your system but on the PC of the person having the problem viewing your free/busy or calendar.

  1. Open a new email.
  2. Type in the first few characters of your name – but do not hit enter.  This will display a drop down list of all predicted email addresses – including yours.
  3. Hover over the entry for your email address.  And X will appear on the far right.
  4. Click the X.  The entry for your email address will disappear.

That’s it.  Your calendar or free/busy should now be visible to the user.

Occasionally, an instance of Outlook will have a problem updating the Offline Global Address book.  (Usually due to size, bandwidth, or poor network connectivity)

If this happened, and your “entry” changed in the GAL for whatever reason, anyone that can’t download an updated copy of the Offline Global Address Book may run into issues viewing your calendar or free/busy. 

Deleting the cached entry will force Outlook to look up your credentials again from the ONLINE Global Address Book, which it normally doesn’t do because it takes longer time than using the Offline Global Address book.

Posted by: kurtsh | January 16, 2019

WHITEPAPER: “Reimagining retail in the digital age”

imageThe retail industry is undergoing seismic shifts stoked by swift and unprecedented technology innovation. This change presents both a challenge and an opportunity for retailers faced with adapting to a shopping landscape being upended by a $2.3 trillion global ecommerce market, and the rise of savvy, ever connected consumers with the world’s biggest virtual mall at their fingertips.

For retailers and brands navigating this new world, digital intelligence and innovation—be it an artificial intelligence powered chatbot that fields customer service requests or a hyper-local store assortment informed by the Internet of Things—are critical to driving sales and margins in today’s on-demand consumer economy.

Digital technology is the connective tissue adding ease, convenience, customization, and automation to every aspect of a retail organization—from its business processes, operations, and how employees work, to the customer experiences provided and the very products and services offered.

In this paper, we explore the opportunities birthed by digital transformation, and how Microsoft can help retailers reimagine their businesses and survive and thrive in today’s competitive environment.

Posted by: kurtsh | January 14, 2019

INFO: Resources for shifting to a “Modern Desktop”

imageThis is a great post from Jared Spataro, our VP for Microsoft 365, highlighting the new resources we’ve announced to help customers move to a “Modern Desktop”, meaning one that leverages Windows 10 & Office 365 ProPlus.

The blog focuses on 4 resources/announcements customers should leverage to get to a Modern Desktop:

    Cloud-based analytics tools called “Desktop Analytics” that provide inventory & usage information about Windows 10 & Office 365 ProPlus & integrate with SCCM to make modern desktop deployment even easier.
    A program to ensure app compatibility for upgrades and updates of Windows and Office.
    • [NEW] September releases of Windows 10 Enterprise and Education edition are supported for 30 months.
    • [NEW] Windows 10 Enterprise & Education edition Versions 1607, 1703, 1709, and 1803 are also supported for 30 months.
    • [SAME AS PREVIOUS] Otherwise
      • March releases of Windows 10 Enterprise and Education edition are supported for 18 months.
      • Windows 10 Pro, Home, & Office 365 ProPlus will continue to be supported for 18 months.
    • Windows 7 has Extended Security Updates available at a subscription cost, enabling paid-for support up to 2023
      • Note: This announcement was posted before the announcement of Windows Virtual Desktop which ALSO provides Extended Security Updates – except at no additional cost to the subscriber of Windows Virtual Desktop services.
    • Office 365 ProPlus is supported on Windows 8.1 until 2023
    • Office 365 ProPlus is supported on Windows Server 2016 until 2025
    • Office 2016 will be supported on Office 365 until October 2023

Read the details of these announcements here:

imageJoin us for a workshop on data privacy and compliance at Microsoft Technology Centers in the US

With evolving data regulations, you need a trusted source for information, best practices, and strategies.  This January, Microsoft is hosting Data Privacy and Compliance Workshops, at US Microsoft Technology Centers. This hands-on session will be invaluable for you and your legal, compliance, risk, and/or security teams.

Attend this session to learn about:

  • Key changes and regulations affecting personal privacy, controls, notifications, transparent policies, IT, and training.
  • How Microsoft runs on trust and uses AI ethically as part of this commitment.
  • How Microsoft 365 Security and Compliance technology can help you along your journey toward compliance with a geographic or industry regulation such as the GDPR, ISO, SOX, HIPAA, etc.
  • See and experience how Microsoft 365 simplifies your compliance journey.
  • Next steps for assessing if your company is ready for evolving regulations across assess, protect, and response. 



Microsoft Ignite 2019

November 4-8, 2019
Orange County Convention Center
Orlando, FL

Pre-register here:

On-demand Sessions from last year’s Ignite 2018:

We’ve released a free eBook, “Free eBook, “Learn Azure in a Month of Lunches: A practical guide to learning Azure cloud computing skills quickly”.

imageMore than 100 Azure services offer everything you need to build and run your applications with all the performance, redundancy, security, and scale that the cloud has to offer. But knowing where to begin with all these services can seem overwhelming.

Read this e-book to build your cloud computing skills quickly and efficiently. You’ll be productive immediately, and when you finish, you’ll be well on your way to Azure mastery.

Learn Azure in a Month of Lunches breaks down the most important Azure concepts into bite-sized lessons with exercises and labs—along with project files available in GitHub—to reinforce your skills. Learn how to:

  • Use core Azure infrastructure and platform services—including how to choose which service for which task.
  • Plan appropriately for availability, scale, and security while considering cost and performance.
  • Integrate key technologies, including containers and Kubernetes, artificial intelligence and machine learning, and the Internet of Things. 

Download the 373 pg eBook here:

In August, we announced the general availability of Azure CycleCloud, a tool for creating, managing, operating, and optimizing HPC clusters of any scale in Azure born from Microsoft’s acquisition last August of Cycle Computing.

imageWe are excited to announce the general availability of Azure CycleCloud, a tool for creating, managing, operating, and optimizing HPC clusters of any scale in Azure.

With Azure CycleCloud, we are making it even easier for everyone to deploy, use, and optimize HPC burst, hybrid, or cloud-only clusters. For users running traditional HPC clusters, using schedulers including SLURM, PBS Pro, Grid Engine, LSF, HPC Pack, or HTCondor, this will be the easiest way to get clusters up and running in the cloud, and manage the compute/data workflows, user access, and costs for their HPC workloads over time.

With a few clicks, HPC IT administrators can deploy high-performance clusters of compute, storage, filesystem, and application capability in Azure. Azure CycleCloud’s role-based policies and governance features make it easy for their organizations to deliver the hybrid compute power where needed while avoiding runaway costs. Users can rely on Azure CycleCloud to orchestrate their job and data workflows across these clusters.

Azure CycleCloud is free to download and use to help get innovative HPC workloads like this one running on Azure, with easy management and cost control. If you have HPC and AI workloads that need to leverage Azure’s specialized compute capabilities to get answers back faster, try it for free today!

To read the entire announcement, visit:

For more on Azure CycleCloud, visit:

Get the Azure CycleCloud software here:

imageRead this white paper on “Using Azure for Silicon Development with Electronic Design Automation (EDA) Software”


If you’re a government-focused developer, IT pro, or mission leader striving to learn the latest on Azure Government and optimize your skills and productivity, be sure to register today and join us for our Azure Government Innovation Tour coming to Raleigh, Chicago, DC, Austin and Atlanta.

This can’t-miss event showcases  50+ Azure Government demos across a wide range of technologies including PaaS, IaaS, AI and Machine Learning, Azure Data Services, Serverless, Containers, and numerous tips and tricks.

At our first stop in Sacramento, participants ranged from current Azure Government users with active projects looking to improve their skills and optimize capabilities to cloud users comparing different cloud platforms and organizations just initiating their cloud migration journey. Here’s what participants are saying about their experience:

“The Azure Government Innovation Tour gave us a much deeper understand of the capabilities Azure Government brings to the table to support the strategic projects our government clients are initiating.”

“The event inspired us to move conversations forward to make real the plans we have to modernize our services for the residents of California.”

Upcoming tour dates and locations:

Join us at one of these locations to learn to develop and deploy mission critical applications in Microsoft Azure Government. At this free, code-first event for government-focused developers, IT Pros, and mission leaders, you’ll learn the latest about how to be more productive with Azure.


Steve Michelotti and Yujin Hong of the Azure Government Engineering team will demo serverless compute, data services, AI, machine learning, containers, and share numerous tips and tricks. You and your team will walk away with first-hand knowledge of how to effectively leverage Microsoft Azure Government for your most important workloads in a highly secure and compliant manner.



Steve Michelotti

Microsoft Engineering


Yujin Hong

Microsoft Engineering

imageMicrosoft Workplace Analytics is happy to share that we’ll be participating in the People Analytics & Future of Work 2019 Conference on January 31st and February 1st in the San Francisco Bay Area. 

  • Using Microsoft’s discount code MWPA200 before Friday, January 11th will provide $200 off the normal registration fee. 

This unique event covers all aspects of People/Talent Analytics space, from Employee Engagement, Wellness, Diversity & Inclusion, Workforce Planning, all the way to AI in HR.  

imagePeople Analytics leaders including Dawn Klinghoffer, David Green, Heather Whiteman, Amit Mohindra, Stacia Garr, Jonathan Ferrar, Al Adamsen, and many more.

Microsoft Workplace Analytics will be featured in the People Analytics Technology Expo, so we hope to see you there!

People Analytics & Future of Work 2019 Conference
January 31st-February 1st

The Westin San Francisco Airport 
1 Old Bayshore Hwy, Millbrae, CA 94030, USA
+1 650-692-3500

For more information, visit:

Posted by: kurtsh | January 9, 2019

RELEASE: GitHub announces Free Private Repos

GitHub today announced it was giving users of its free plan access to unlimited private repositories. (Private repositories on free accounts are limited to three collaborators apiece.)

imageToday we’re announcing two major updates to make GitHub more accessible to developers: unlimited free private repositories, and a simpler, unified Enterprise offering. We’re excited about these updates to our Free and Enterprise offerings:

  • GitHub Free now includes unlimited private repositories. For the first time, developers can use GitHub for their private projects with up to three collaborators per repository for free. Many developers want to use private repos to apply for a job, work on a side project, or try something out in private before releasing it publicly. Starting today, those scenarios, and many more, are possible on GitHub at no cost. Public repositories are still free (of course—no changes there) and include unlimited collaborators.

Read more about this announcement here:

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