What's new with the Exchange hybrid configuration wizard?

Exchange continues to serve as the on-ramp into Office 365 for many organizations. One big reason is the hybrid capabilities that connect on-premises Exchange and Exchange Online.

If you use Exchange Server, it's not difficult to join it to Exchange Online for a seamless transition into the cloud. Microsoft refined the Exchange hybrid configuration wizard to remove a lot of the technical hurdles to shift one of the more important IT workloads into Exchange Online. If you haven't seen the Exchange hybrid experience recently, you may be surprised about some of the improvements over the last few years.

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Authentication Planning in the enterprise

What a great time to be an IT pro. I mean really, who has it better than us? On any given day there is so much going on, so much to learn, so much to improve, I do really enjoy my job(s). As I think about how to open this blog post, it occurs to me that I’ve had some great opportunities in my career. Sort of a “as one door closes, another one opens” sort of thing.

I have spent most of my career as an “email guy”. I started as a Banyan Vines administrator, moved through numerous evolutions of the email concept, and now I find myself at a place where email is being deemphasized. I don’t mean to say email is “done”. I don’t by into that nonsense that Yammer, Slack, Teams, Skype, or any other alternative collaboration platform is ever going to replace what email. Email provides a platform that none of those others can replace. They can add-on and improve the overall enterprise collaboration experience, but I don’t see replace an option that will ever happen.

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Exchange troubleshooting tools help unclog email issues

While Office 365 and Exchange Online are all the talk in the messaging world, there are still a lot of mailboxes in the data center. Most estimates say there are more Exchange mailboxes running on premises right now than there are in Office 365.

Exchange Server's importance to your organization means it's crucial to hone your abilities to diagnose a problem when an outage occurs. Every issue is different, but there are some common problems that can be fixed with some Exchange troubleshooting tools to get the system back up and working in short order.

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Conditional Access: Going Beyond The Username & Password Model

Since the dawn of time, or at least the dawn of computers, logging into our computer resources has been all about username and password. The username and password model has worked pretty well considering the simplicity of this model, but now it’s time to move on to better thought out authentication and authorization systems.

In this blog post I’m going to look at the current state of Conditional Access in Azure and Office 365. We’ll look at what Conditional Access is, how it works, and some of the other authentication and authorization systems interact with Conditional Access. In this blog post, I’m not so much going for a technical explanation of what buttons to click to make this or that feature work so much as a higher-level discussion of the reasons and theories behind Conditional Access.

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July 2019 - Office 365 Outages

As IT Pros a major part of our responsibility is to keep our organizations IT services up and running. Historically this was a pretty straight forward job. It’s never been an easy job, but your software on your servers connected to your network makes everything straight forward. Moving services to Office 365 makes things much more complicated. How do you manage an outage for a cloud service? Is there any point to monitoring a cloud service when you can’t do anything to fix an outage?

In this blog post I’m going to look at a recent Office 365 outage and talk about what we as IT Pros should be doing to ensure that we’re helping the organizations we work for get the most out of their Office 365 subscription.

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