Microsoft Video Indexer

Don’t forget to adjust the caption and font on the above from the menu that appears when you mouse over the the panel.

Thought I’d show you the results of what happens when you use the Microsoft Video Indexer. I have written about this before but now you can upload just audio files. So I uploaded the latest Need to Know podcast to see what happened.

You can see the embedded results above and the direct page here:

I haven’t made any editing changes and there are few funny interpretations and translations there but overall it is very impressive what this technology can do.

There are plenty more options that I’m going to start playing with at the back end but I thought I’d share with you the raw results before I start tinkering going forward.

Need to Know Podcast–Episode 174

In the absence of Marc Kean who is busy at Microsoft, let me introduce my new co-host Brenton Johnson from Uptake Digital. Brenton comes from a ‘born in the cloud’ IT business that looks after customer’s digital needs and implements cloud solutions for them. In this episode we meet Brenton and find out about his background, we also cover some new and updates from the world of Azure and Office 365. Have a listen and let us know what you think of the changes. We are still finding our feet in absence of Marc.

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.




January Update for Microsoft Teams

New features in Planner

New apps in Microsoft Teams

Outlook Groups app is retiring

Use SharePoint web parts to showcase data from inside and outside Office 365

Azure revenues

Hybrid Cloud printing

Azure Cloud Shell

Protect machines using managed disks and ASR

Thoughts on being a modern IT Professional

Here’s a presentation that I gave recently on being a “Modern IT Professional”.

The skills required to successfully manage IT have been shifting for a number of years now. Do you know what major expertise will be required to successfully support customer IT systems in the future? How do you go about not only acquiring these, but also maintaining them in the fast paced, ever changing, environment of tomorrow? This session will arm you with the technical and personal capabilities you’ll need to master into the future to ensure you have a long, fruitful, successful and most importantly, profitable career.

The End of the Domain Controller

Here is my keynote presentation from the Ingram Micro Cloud Connection 2017.

The end of the Domain Controller – A new era, a new opportunity

If businesses no longer require a traditional domain controller what does that means for the IT resellers? How can you utilise the latest cloud services to not only provide identity but security and management for customers? Will this mean a change of business model or simply an integration of new services and techniques into your current offerings? This session will help you understand the direction your business needs to focus on to take full advantage of the evolving cloud services that are fast making traditional domain controllers redundant.

CIAOPS now accepts Bitcoin

For some time now I’ve been looking into cryptocurrency and can report that I have learned much. I am vey excited about the potential that the underlying technology they are built on, known as blockchain.

I hope to soon start publishing some insights and opinions about this brave new world of payments and currencies but to the best way to get the ball rolling is to dive in head first. I therefore went ahead and set myself up with a bitcoin wallet which is here:


I have also added that information to my blog with the idea that if something I publish there is of benefit to someone they can ‘almost’ immediately make a small donation directly using bitcoin. This maybe one of the ways that things like bitcoins function well at in the future economy, via micro payments. That is, to make say a $1 donation is simply uneconomic given normal transfer and other fees if you chose to use a normal forms of payment. However, with bitcoin it is simple and easy to do exactly that. Just whip out your device, scan the QR code and make a small donation as way of appreciation.

Now to grease the wheels of commerce here a little I’m going to offer an incentive to be the first person to send me some bitcoin. So, if you are indeed the first person to send me some bitcoin (over say $1) I’ll send you free one of my publications Getting Started with Skype for Business Online or Beyond the Basics with SharePoint Online in PDF format.

So once you have sent me some coin, send me an email ( and tell me exactly how many bitcoin you sent to verify it was you, as well as which publication you’d like to receive in exchange. The best way to ensure someone else doesn’t guess the amount is to send me a random amount of bitcoin (say $1.27 or the like). Once I’ve verified your transfer, I’ll send you a PDF copy of the choice of your publication.

The offer is now out there and the clock is ticking. Let’s see how long it takes for someone to win the prize.

Digital Workplace Conference

Interested in learning about how to transform your business with the latest digital tools? if so, then there is no better place the the Digital Workplace Conference held in Sydney next week. I’ll certainly be going along to learn about the latest technology from some of the brightest minds in the industry.

I also have access to a special $100 discount code for the full 2 day event that you can use if you want to attend. Simply contact me ( and I’ll let you know all the details.

If you are going I hope we can catch up so please reach out and let me know when we can meet up.

Ask what others can’t do


The shift from traditional on premises to technologies like cloud has created significant disruption in the market. Such disruption extends through the entire chain and also includes IT resellers who have traditionally made their revenue by selling physical devices like servers.

The move to the cloud has meant that many IT resellers are receiving significantly less revenue and thus need to look elsewhere to generate additional income. Most turned to email migrations as way to keep the dollars flowing. Unfortunately, that opportunity quickly became commoditised and in fact also declines as more organisations move to the cloud. Unfortunately for IT resellers, the email migration to the cloud is probably the last email migration they will do for a customer.

So now it is back to square one for IT resellers looking for revenue. Unfortunately, most are looking for additional opportunities in the wrong way I believe. Most now look for something they ‘want’ to do rather than looking for what nobody else can do.

The problem with doing what you ‘want’ to do is that based on your history, associations, experience you are most likely going to choose something your peers are also going to ‘want’ to do. Why? Because they are just like you and thus make similar choices. That simply lands us back in a world like the traditional box moving or email migrations, with many people are doing the same thing. The result? A commodity market where it is hard to make a decent profit.

Instead, I would suggest, you need to look out at the market and find what others are not doing or don’t want to do and fill that void. Profitability, in the SMB space, really doesn’t come from doing what everyone else does. It comes from being a specialist, from being a unique provider that remains largely unchallenged in the market.

Chances are that if you do something no one else can do you’ll need to improve your skills and incorporate new knowledge but the ROI you’ll receive doing that will be significantly higher. It simply supply and demand economics. You can charge more if there are less suppliers in the market.

So get known for something else that no else is known for. Be the go to person for that specific technology or technique. Don’t simply travel with the pack and do what everyone else does. That is lazy and the results you receive will be less than stellar for exactly that reason. Success doesn’t arrive or appear, it is earned. It is on the other side of hard work, persistence and discipline. The good thing is that success is definitely on the other side of those attributes and the sooner you start, the sooner you’ll arrive there.

So remember, to ensure future profitability and relevance, don’t ask what you ‘want’ to do, find what nobody else can do and then go do exactly that. That is your guarantee of success, mark my words.

CIAOPS online course catalogue promotion


Here’s a special offer on the Complete Course Catalogue for my online training academy you can find at:

The Complete Course Catalogue is an annual subscription that gives you access to every course I have created (including courses on Azure, Office 365, Yammer, SharePoint and more) and will create. Thus, if you sign up today you get access to the 25+ courses I have already created PLUS you’ll also get access to all the new courses I have in the works for 2017-18.

So the deal, until July 1 and for a strictly limited number of takers, is:

$100 discount off the first year’s subscription (making it US$499)

– a 1 hour remote consulting call with me that you can use for training, business mentoring or the like ($300 value)

– access to the private CIAOPS Facebook tech community to discuss and ask your questions in and share with other members ($120 value), including access to my Office 365 and Azure codexes.

– free Getting Started With Skype for Business eBook ($10 value)

– free Beyond the Basics with SharePoint Online eBook ($10 value)

That’s over $450 in value plus what you’ll get from the online courses that include video lessons, downloadable notes, links and more.

As I said, this offer is strictly limited until the 1st of July 2017 or until sold out, so don’t delay. Sign up today to take advantage of this strictly limited learning opportunity.

To take advantage of this deal use the code EOFY17 at checkout or click this link:

I look forward to seeing you in the CIAOPS Academy and Facebook Tech group.