Tony Redmond's Exchange Unwashed Blog

Dec 11, 2015
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Is Azure Active Directory becoming the Achilles Heel of Office 365? 7

In an outage that reminded many of the June 2014 problems that affected Exchange Online users in the U.S. for seven hours, the Azure Active Directory infrastructure serving Office 365 and other Microsoft cloud services in Europe experienced major problems on December 3. The effect of the outage was not uniform and appeared to be confined to Northern and Western Europe....More
Dec 8, 2015
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Two years on: revisiting a conversation with Exchange development chief Perry Clarke

Two years ago, I spoke with Perry Clarke, the development chief for Exchange (both on-premises and cloud) to discuss the current state of Exchange and how its technology was likely to evolve. We know how the influence of the cloud has affected the way that product development occurs and how quickly things now happen. I thought it would be interesting to look back on how Exchange has evolved in the period....More
Dec 3, 2015
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Interesting connectors make cloud data sources available to Office 365 Groups 1

Something more interesting than contained in the headlight often lurks behind a major announcement. On November 18, the news was all about the Microsoft Graph and the way that a unified API allowed developers to exploit Office 365 and Azure Active Directory data sources....More
Dec 1, 2015
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Microsoft releases Office 365 E5 Plan 1

Those who have been waiting for Microsoft to release the new high-end E5 Office 365 plan can breathe a sigh of relief today because they can now purchase licenses through the Office 365 portal. Highlights of the new plan are described in an Office 365 blog post....More
Nov 26, 2015
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Building efficient keyword queries for eDiscovery searches in Exchange and SharePoint

The ability to run searches across a mixture of Exchange mailboxes and SharePoint sites to uncover the deep and dark secrets of those who would prefer their work to go unnoticed is what, in some degree, eDiscovery is all about. Microsoft has invested heavily in the area of compliance over the last decade, with the initial work showing up in Exchange 2010 and SharePoint 2010. There was much to like in the first implementation, especially in Exchange 2010, if only because so many legal discovery actions center on email....More
Nov 24, 2015
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Why Exchange 2016 ignores Outlook 2007 1

Part of planning a deployment of a new on-premises release of Exchange is a review of client requirements. It’s therefore reasonable that anyone who is interested in deploying Exchange 2016 might start to look at clients to make sure that users will be able to access the new server after it is deployed. It’s also true that you might be interested in new clients if you want to deploy technology that’s only available in a specific client....More
Nov 19, 2015
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SharePoint 2016, Microsoft Graph, Ingestion, and choosing a new smartphone

Being a creature of habit, I usually publish posts on Tuesday and Thursday. Yesterday brought the news about Microsoft Graph and the possibilities it opens to developers who want to build apps against the Office 365 platform, so I published my interview with Rob Lefferts, the GM of Office Extensibility (I still can’t get over that title). Which creates a vacuum today....More
Nov 18, 2015
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Sixty million Office 365 targets light up for developers 1

A recent conversation with Rob Lefferts, Microsoft GM of Office Extensibility (I bet some think he is in charge of extending office space) moved me to think just how extensible the overall Office suite is right now. In this context, Office is the complete collection of the desktop applications (Word, Excel, etc.), the servers (Exchange, SharePoint, etc.), and includes new offerings such as Sway. As such, it’s a pretty broad canvas for which Microsoft has to provide the necessary APIs and tool sets to allow developers to work their magic....More
Nov 17, 2015
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Why Microsoft decided to keep deleted items in Exchange Online and why it might be the right decision 2

Some interesting discussion has flowed into my mailbox since Microsoft announced their decision to stop cleaning out the Deleted Items folder of user mailboxes in Office 365. The announcement appeared on February 20 and started a 28-day countdown to implementation....More
Nov 12, 2015
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The not so boring version of how Exchange Online satisfies SEC rule 17A-4

November 10 brought a Microsoft announcement that Office 365 Online Archiving now meets the requirements of SEC Rule 17a-4. You might be unfamiliar with SEC 17A-4, as I know it’s not a topic of interest for many outside the legal and financial community. Basically, this deals with the record keeping requirements for financial companies trading in the U.S. market under the aegis of the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC)....More
Nov 10, 2015
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Microsoft reduces price for Office 365 Import Service 1

At the start of October 2015, I wrote about a document that had been circulated to Microsoft partners to publicize the pricing for the Office 365 Import Service. The price point was $8 per gigabyte ingested into Office 365, a level that caused me to choke when some simple math determined that Microsoft apparently wanted to send customers a $32K invoice for the privilege of processing a 4 TB drive stuffed full of PSTs to be imported into Office 365....More
Nov 5, 2015
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Getting data into Office 365 is easy; not so straightforward to retrieve 2

Some recent discussions with companies such as Veeam and Mimecast who specialize in different aspects of data backup have convinced me that a concern about the difficulty of being able to get an organization’s information back out of Office 365 might be well founded....More
Nov 3, 2015
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Google’s last gasp attempt to stop the Office 365 juggernaut

In October, Google announced that they would let customers who had a current enterprise agreement (EA) with Microsoft to use Google Apps for Work for free until the EA expires. At that point, the customer is expected to begin paying Google the regular subscription fees ($5 per month per user for the productivity apps or $10 per user for unlimited storage)....More
Oct 29, 2015
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Understanding what the Exchange 2016 Preferred Architecture really means 1

The notion of “best practice” has long been an elastic commodity when applied to Exchange architecture and design. Consultants and consulting companies have professed to have their own magic method to ensure the successful deployment of Exchange since the first version appeared nearly twenty years ago. There’s nothing harmful in following a successful recipe. Problems only appear when people refuse to change the recipe to reflect new developments....More
Oct 27, 2015
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Transition from on-premises to cloud reflected in Microsoft's latest results

Microsoft released their Q1 FY16 results on October 22 and I took a look at what they reported. Not because I like pouring over financial documents but in an attempt to figure out the health of the technology that I cover, meaning Office 365, Exchange, SharePoint, and associated products....More
Oct 26, 2015
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Veeam and Office 365 - not today, maybe in the future

In September, I wrote about how features included in Office 365 undermine the case advanced by vendors who seek to convince customers of the need for off-site backups. In a nutshell, my advice is to make sure that you exploit all the standard features before you invest in a backup solution....More
Oct 22, 2015
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What Exchange admins need to know about SharePoint Online backup and restore

In most cases, Exchange is the easiest workload to move to Office 365, which is why many companies have moved mailboxes to the cloud over the last four years. And when those mailboxes are in the cloud, Exchange’s range of native data protection features is used to ensure that their contents remain safe and secure....More
Oct 20, 2015
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Creating a common groups platform for Office 365

Some weeks ago, I wrote about the question that many people have when they consider what collaboration platform to use within Office 365. Essentially, the choice is between Yammer and Office 365 Groups. The solutions use very different platforms and, in some respects, cater for different needs....More
Oct 15, 2015
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Outlook's likes and mentions really don't float my boat 2

The news that Microsoft is about to make Outlook Web Access (OWA, or if you work for marketing, Outlook on the web) and Outlook 2016 behave like Facebook filled me with distaste. I guess it’s because I consider Outlook to be a working tool rather than a method to stroke the egos of insecure correspondents. The deal is this. Before the end of the year, OWA users who connect to Exchange Online will be able to “like” messages, the idea being:...More
Oct 13, 2015
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FUD continues over OWA backdoor exploit 5

Last week, I wrote about a report issued by security company Cybereason that reported how an attacker had gathered 11,000 sets of user credentials after planting a compromised OWAAUTH.DLL file on an Exchange server. A spirited debate duly resulted and Cybereason commented back on the original post....More
What's Tony Redmond's Exchange Unwashed Blog?

On-premises and cloud-based Microsoft Exchange Server and all the associated technology that runs alongside Microsoft's enterprise messaging server.

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Tony Redmond

Tony Redmond is a senior contributing editor for Windows IT Pro. His latest books are Office 365 for Exchange Professionals (eBook, May 2015) and Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 Inside Out: Mailbox...
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