CIAOPS Techwerks 6–Sydney June 6

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CIAOPS Techwerks move to Sydney in June on Thursday the 6th. The course is limited to 15 people and you can now sign up and reserve your place. To do this just email me (director@ciaops.com) and I’ll add you to the list.

The content of these events is driven by the attendees. That means we cover exactly what people want to see and focus on doing hands on, real world scenarios. Attendees can vote on topics they’d like to see covered prior to the day and we continue to target exactly what the small group of attendees wants to see. Thus, this is an excellent way to get really deep into the technology and have all the questions you’ve been dying to know answered. Typically, the event produces a number of best practice take aways for each attendee. So far, the greatest votes are for deeper dives into Intune, security and PowerShell configuration and scripts, however that isn’t finalised until the day.

Recent testimonial – “I just wanted to say a big thank you to Robert for the Brisbane Techworks day. It is such a good format with each attendee asking what matters them and the whole interactive nature of the day. So much better than death by PowerPoint.” – Mike H.

The cost to attend is:

Patron level Price inc GST
Gold Enterprise Free
Gold $ 33
Silver $ 99
Bronze $ 176
Non Patron $ 399

The CIAOPS Techwerks events are run regularly in major Australian capital cities, so if you can’t make this one or you aren’t in Sydney on that date, stay tuned for more details and announcements soon. If you are interested in signing up please contact me via emails (director@ciaops.com) and I can let you know all the details as well as answer any questions you may have about the event.

I hope to see you there.

MSP Microsoft Partner MFA request

I’m not a Managed Service Provider (MSP) but there are lot of them inside the CIAOPS Patron community so I understand the challenges they have. Their role is typically to provide managed of customers technology, including things like Microsoft 365 and Azure. To perform that role they will typically need global administrator access to the clients tenant. They may need this access across multiple tenants.

Best practices is always to ensure you secure global administrator access via Multi Factor Authentication (MFA). This means, when you log into an account you’ll be prompted to verify your identity using a second factor like a code from an app on a mobile device. As I have detailed previously:

Using multiple authenticator apps with a single Microsoft 365 user account

you can have multiple ‘tokens’ to verify an account. If you want all of these tokens to be unique the current Azure AD arrangements are:

“Your users can now have up to five devices across the Authenticator app, software OATH tokens, and hardware OATH tokens.”

per – https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/Azure-Active-Directory-Identity/Hardware-OATH-tokens-in-Azure-MFA-in-the-cloud-are-now-available/ba-p/276466

That arrangement is generally fine if only one person is logging into an account but is a problems if you an MSP.

Why? Because you’ll typically have multiple technicians all needing to potentially manage a customers account. You want them to do this from a single global administrator account, however you want each technician to use a different token when they login. That way, if a technicians device gets lost or a technician leaves you merely revoke that one unique token. So, in the case where an MSP needs more than 5 tokens (say 1 for MSP and 4 for technicians) there is going to be an issue. For example what happens when you have 7 technicians say? Yes, there are ways around this but they are messy, cumbersome and inefficient as well as being more insecure I would suggest.

The ask here then is for the ability to increase the amount of tokens beyond 5 for a single account. I would suggest that perhaps the best way to accomplish this is only via a unique PowerShell command and not via the GUI. I also however suggest that a better idea would be to have a new unique global admin role in a tenant, say called “Partner Global Administrator”, that would allow more than 5 tokens. No other administrator could have this enabled, only this unique account. I would also suggest that this unique “Partner Global Administrator” also only be available in tenants that use CSP program from Microsoft. Thus, if the MSP is a CSP partner they will see this special role in the tenant. They then run a PowerShell script if needed and the number of tokens available on that account is increased up to say 20.

I also think that there is number of other benefits that a special “Partner Global Administrator” role could provide but for this request I want to stick to allowing the number security tokens be increased beyond 5.

I believe this request will help the many MSPs globally who manage a significant number of tenants for customers. Making it easier for MSPs to be secure and manage multiple customers more efficiently is a win for everyone.

CIAOPS Techwerks 5–Melbourne May 10

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Hot on the heels of a successful CIAOPS Techwerks 4 in Perth in April, Techwerks 5 will move to Melbourne on Friday the 10th of May. The course is limited to 15 people and you can sign up and reserve your place now! You reserve a place by send me an email (director@ciaops.com) expressing you interest.

The content of these events is driven by the attendees. That means we cover exactly what people want to see and focus on doing hands on, real world scenarios. Attendees can vote on topics they’d like to see covered prior to the day and we continue to target exactly what the small group of attendees wants to see. Thus, this is an excellent way to get really deep into the technology and have all the questions you’ve been dying to know answered. Typically, the event produces a number of best practice take aways for each attendee. So far, the greatest votes are for deeper dives into Intune, security and PowerShell configuration and scripts, however that isn’t finalised until the day.

Recent testimonial – “I just wanted to say a big thank you to Robert for the Brisbane Techworks day. It is such a good format with each attendee asking what matters them and the whole interactive nature of the day. So much better than death by PowerPoint.” – Mike H.

The cost to attend is:


Patron Level Price inc GST
Gold Enterprise Free
Gold $ 33
Silver $ 99
Bronze $176
Non Patron $399

To learn more about the benefits of the CIAOPS Patron program visitwww.ciaopspatron.com.

To register, simply email me – director@ciaops.com and I’ll take care of everything from there.

The CIAOPS Techwerks events are run regularly in major Australian capital cities, so if you can’t make this one or you aren’t in Perth on that date, stay tuned for more details and announcements soon. If you are interested in signing up please contact me via emails (director@ciaops.com) and I can let you know all the details as well as answer any questions you may have about the event.

I hope to see you there.

Reward if your become a CIAOPS Patron this April

During April 2019, if you sign up to become a CIAOPS Patron, at any level, you will receive a heavily discounted version of the fabulous Office 365 for IT Pros book.

This books comes with perpetual updates, meaning that when the content is updated, you can download that update for free for the life of the publication. This is amazing value for a service that is continually changing. I highly recommend that everyone administrating Office 365 should have this publication and now if you sign up for the benefits of the CIAOPS Patron program you’ll be able to secure your copy for:

Bronze sign up = 50% discount

Silver sign up = 75% discount

Gold sign up = 85% discount

Gold Enterprise = 100% discount

Remember, this offer only applies for new signups to the CIAOPS Patron program in April 2019, so don’t delay because this offer will not be extended.

Changing Linkedin default from Connect to Follow

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By default, you’ll see that most people on Linkedin have a Connect button like shown above. Now that is a great option, however unfortunately, I’m sure many people have connected with someone on Linkedin innocently and almost immediately you get spammed since they can now message you. Of course, you can remove them but there is a better way to reduce this happening.

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What you do to change the default option from Connect to Follow is go into your Privacy settings, then select Blocking and hiding. At the bottom enable Make follow primary.

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Now the default action will be Follow as seen above. Is Connect still there?

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Yes, but you need go hunting for it, which means that most people trying to spam you probably won’t bother doing that.

Not foolproof I admit, but certainly a handy way to make it just that little bit harder to spam you!

Easily connect using the Linkedin mobile app

One of things that I’m spending a lot of time here at the MVP Summit in Seattle doing is networking with other MVPs. One of the best tools to connect is via Linkedin. Here’s a really simple way to make that happen that I learned about today (and can share) using the Linkedin mobile app.

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Fire up the Linkedin App on your mobile device. Here I’ll use iOS. To the right of the search bar you’ll notice four squares arranged together as shown above. Select this.

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This should take you to a screen like shown above. Across the top you now have two options, Scan and My code. Scan allows you to use the camera on your device to scan someone else’s Linkedin QR code. My Code display your QR code that you can share with others.

Once you have scanned in the QR code using this method, that person’s Linkedin details will appear on your mobile device and you can connect. Easy eh?