Sunday, September 16, 2018

Office 365 Mobile Application Management basics

When you look at a licensed user in Office 365 you will see sections like this:


You’ll see there are no device settings as yet.


If a user now downloads and installs the Outlook app on their phone.


and then logs into it


they will be able to receive the emails as expected.


However, they will also see that the organization is protecting their device.


and thus, they will require a PIN for the Outlook application.


They can also download the OneDrive app and connect to their OneDrive for Business.


If they however use GMail to access their emails they will again see the prompt above letting them know that Office 365 will be controlling part of this account.


The user will see the things that will be possible via remote management.


The users account can be connected via most mail clients using their login and password.


and they will be able to see their emails.


The same thing applies if they use the native mail client that comes with the device. That account will need to be put under management before it can be used as shown above.


Once done so, the user can read their emails.


Now that a user has configured their device for an Office 365 service you will see an additional option in the list of items for their account in the administration center – Device Settings.

This item is Device Settings and you should see the devices they have configured.


If you select Device Settings you should see all the devices the user has configured, as shown above. You will notice that these devices are “App managed”, which basically means just the software on the device is managed, not the operating system or the anything else on the device.


You can select the device and then select Remove company data, however, because the device is only “App managed” you’ll see that you can’t wipe the whole the device.


if you continue with the Remove company data option, you see the above confirmation screen.


If you then select Confirm you will see the above confirmation that data removal from the device has commenced.


If you wish to remove the OneDrive data as well it is best practice to go into the OneDrive settings and Initiate a sign out as shown above.


You’ll then receive confirmation that this sign process has commenced.

This basic version of device management is available across all Office 365 plans, however if you are looking for more powerful management, with full device management, then you need to consider using Intune and actually enrolling the devices which I’ll cover in an upcoming update.

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Auditing Office 365 user logins via PowerShell


One of the common audit requirements people have with Office 365 is to determine when their users successfully. and unsuccessfully logged into Office 365.

I’ve detailed how to do this in the web interface here:

Searching the Office 365 activity log for failed logins

but now you can find this script that I have made available that will report this via PowerShell:

In the variables area you will find three options for $operations like so:

$operation="userloginfailed","userloggedin" ## use this line to report all logins

##$operation="userloginfailed" ## use this line to report failed logins

##$operation="userloggedin" ## use this line to report successful logins

Only one of these should be uncommented. (the ## designates everything after it as a comment in PowerShell, just so you know).


The first option “userloginfailed”,”userloggedin” will give you all users logins between the dates you nominate as shown above. Any failed logins will be highlighted in red, successful ones are in green.


The second option, “userloginfailed” will just so failed logins for the period as shown above

The third option, “userloggedin” will just show successful logins for the period.

Those are the main variable to change to get different outputs, but make sure you read the whole script and set the other variables appropriately for your environment.

I’ll be improving the script over time so remember to check bag regularly but now you should be able to easily audit all your user logins to Office 365 using PowerShell.

Friday, September 7, 2018

Need to Know Podcast–Episode 189

This is our follow up episode with Marcus Dervine from Webvine speaking about Digital Transformation. We continue with the transformation pillars that Marcus has outlined in his as the road to successful adoption of technologies like Office 365. Of course Brenton joins me again to catch you up on all the cloud news. We've tried to keep the update as short as we can as we noticed that the episodes are getting longer. We'll do a deeper dive into updates in the next episode as we wanted to make sure there was plenty of time for our guest.

Take a listen and let us know what you think

You can listen directly to this episode at:

Subscribe via iTunes at:

The podcast is also available on Stitcher at:

Don’t forget to give the show a rating as well as send us any feedback or suggestions you may have for the show.





Marcus's book - Digital Transformation, from the inside out (use coupon code CIAOPS for 20% off)


Azure outage

New file template management

Mass delete notification

Passwordless Login

Windows 10 sandboxing

Windows 10 Quality updates

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Creating Office 365 Protection Alerts with PowerShell

I’ve previously covered off how to create a new Protection Alert in Office 365 using the web interface:

Setting an alert for file download in Office 365

I’d also tried doing this via PowerShell but ran into some issues:

I’m puzzled by new-protcetionalert

Luckily, after some chasing down, I have learned that I overlooked an important option in my scripting. It seems the option:

-aggregationtype none

needs to be included. This tells the script to only create a single alert at a time. Thus to create a Protection Alert that will tell you of malware in a file in OneDrive for Business or SharePoint you need to run:

New-protectionalert -category $category -name "Detected malware in files" -ThreatType activity –NotifyUser “” -Operation filemalwaredetected -AggregationType none -Severity High

You’ll first need to connect to the Security and Compliance center with PowerShell before you can run this command.


If you then at the Alert Policies you should see the above.


Interestingly, when you look at the activity that will trigger the alert you see the above, which doesn’t provide you any indication of what the activity for the alert actually is. You will also notice that I can’t edit the activity or much else on the alert once it has been created via PowerShell.

However, I do know that setting Protection alerts via PowerShell does work so I’m happy that I can do bulk add alerts via a script. I just that one option.

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

CIAOPS Need to Know Office 365 Webinar–September


Power BI is an Office 365 service that allows to easily report and dashboard on data from a variety of sources. These sources can be from inside and outside Office 365. In this month’s webinar we’ll take a look at what Power BI and how you can start using it in your business to make better business decisions.

You can register for the regular monthly webinar here:

September Webinar Registrations

The details are:

CIAOPS Need to Know Webinar – September 2018
Tuesday 25th of August 2018
11am – 12am Sydney Time

All sessions are recorded and posted to the CIAOPS Academy.

There of course will also be open Q and A so make sure you bring your questions for me and I’ll do my best to answer them.

The CIAOPS Need to Know Webinars are free to attend but if you want to receive the recording of the session you need to sign up as a CIAOPS patron which you can do here:

or purchase them individually at:

Also feel free at any stage to email me directly via with your webinar topic suggestions.

I’d also appreciate you sharing information about this webinar with anyone you feel may benefit from the session.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Determining the time Office 365 ATP takes to scan an attachment

Office 365 Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) has the ability to sandbox and test attachments prior to delivery to an Office 365 inbox. This is known as ATP Safe Attachments which you read about here:

Office 365 ATP Safe Attachments

Basically, it takes email attachments and opens them in a protected sandbox inside the Microsoft data center to see whether they do any malicious or unexpected. If it does, then actions can be taken to prevent that attachment from reaching the inbox. If not, the attachment is delivered as normal.

Now this sandbox testing does cause a slight delay in delivery of attachment. In my experience, I have never seen any attachment, no matter how large take longer than 2 minutes to deliver. However, there maybe the need to test this delivery time when troubleshooting.

Luckily, I looked around and found this great article from Kloud:

which contains some handy scripting to allow you to determine the time ATP takes to verify an attachment. So I thought I’d build on that.

To complete this process you firstly need to have a tenant that has Office 365 ATP assigned to it. You’ll also need to target a recipient that has an Office 365 ATP license assigned to them. You’ll basically send this recipient two emails, one with an attachment and one without, and then we’ll use a script to determine and report the time difference.


So step 1 is to send a standard email without an attachment to the recipient. I’ll do this here from my Yahoo account.


Once that has been successfully sent, I’ll immediately send another email that is basically the same but this time with an attachment. In this case, I’m send a Word document of 52KB in size.


I need to now wait to ensure both emails are FULLY delivered to the recipient.


If you have Safe Attachment Dynamic Delivery enabled where the body is received while the attachment is still being scanned you need to wait until this scanning process has FULLY completed.


That is, you need to wait until the whole message, including the attachment has been delivered to the Inbox as shown above.


Ensure that you are connected to Exchange Online with PowerShell already and then run my script, which you can find at:

After a few moments you should see the results like that shown above, giving you the number of additional second it took to scan the attachment. In this case around 101 seconds.

There is no real guidance from Microsoft on how long ATP scanning should take so if you do run this script I’d really appreciate you completing this short survey:

ATP Timings

so we can get an idea of what people are seeing out there with ATP. That should also give us an ‘average’ figure we can use to understand ‘normal’ ATP performance.

The survey has one required field of the time in seconds you received but if you could also indicate the size of the attachment you tested that would also help understand whether the size of attachment play a role in any way.

Like I said, my experience has been that ATP never takes more than around 2 minutes to do attachment scanning but I’d love to get your feedback in the survey if you run this script. Thanks again to Kloud for their blog post around this and doing the hard scripting yards.

Monday, September 3, 2018

CIAOPS Learn is here

One of the most common stumbling blocks I see with business today, especially when it comes to using technology is that most simply don’t have the minimum skills to drive productivity benefits. This means that technology becomes more of a hinderance than a help.

This lack of digital literacy has arisen simply because of the low priority that training has been given within the organisation. Many businesses seem to expect their staff to learn technology on ‘the fly’ or in their own time. This is not an environment where people can grow their knowledge about the products and most simply revert to using the ‘minimum’ with each product and fail to explore the full range of options and services that are available to them.

This lack of digital literacy is even more the case with services like Office 365 that are constantly being upgraded and enhanced. Without dedicated time to learning the vast majority of the benefits of these tools are going to remain hidden from the business. This in turn makes them less competitive and productive.

The challenge with traditional training is that sending people ‘back to school’, where they attend all day training courses is simply not feasible or consistent enough not to mention being expensive. Trying to pick up information from the web or YouTube can result in actually getting the wrong or misleading information.

With these challenges in mind I am happy to announce the CIAOPS Learn program that provides web based video training for Office 365 across the whole range of services. From Outlook to OneNote, from OneDrive to Stream, you’ll find it here. For a simple per user per month cost you can give people access to a vast array of up to date training material. You can also customise the learning paths that people take as well as see a dashboard of their progress.


Because this a per user per month service, you can subscribe for as long as you need. You can also sign up for as many licenses as you need at any time. There are single and multiple user options. Payments are handled directly via the CIAOPS Academy but invoicing in AU$ is also possible as well as options for resellers.

To find out more about the service visit:

where you’ll find more information as well as how to sign up immediately using the portal. CIAOPS Gold and Silver patrons also receive free access to the portal as part of their benefits as well, so if you are supporting the Microsoft Cloud you should become a Patron today to receive access to this plus a range of additional benefits.

The better you can utilise technologies like Office 365, the productive and profitable your business will be. With CIAOPS Learn you are now to do this and stay up to date for a low monthly fee.

Become digitally literate today, join the CIAOPS Learn program