Why we study foreign languages

I know that my country – the country where I was born and grew up, the country where my parents gave me everything – from first sip of milk to education and cultural upbringing, the country where I got my friends – this country is the best country in the world. But wait… Did you say “the world”? What is the world? Is it something where other people live? Do those people live their own ways and speak their own languages? Do they love their countries and their culture?

Of course, we know that there are other countries (we use internet-connected computers and smartphones). We probably heard/use words like Gastarbeiter, automobile, opera. But did you know they all came from different other languages to our language. Now what are the other languages and why do we learn foreign languages? I would say there are two main reasons.

The first one is just a practical reason that came from the past – knowing a foreign language helps you make more money. International trade is an essential part of the world economy and impossible without communication. So the ability to communicate in different languages simply gives you an advantage – an ability to do thing not everybody can do – and an opportunity to earn more.

The second reason lies more in the cultural or cognitive field. Simple example: How do I know that The Hamburgeris is tasty? Only because I tried other food and I can compare. The same with languages. “Wer fremde Sprachen nicht kennt, weiß nichts von seiner eigenen” – which means “Those who do not know foreign languages do not know anything about their own” stated the famous German poet and scientist Johann Wolfgang von Goethe.

And that is so true. I just started understanding it because I just started studying foreign language. And the more I learn it – the more I like it. The world is diverse. And that’s the beauty of it. And that diversity is expressed via languages. Each language is unique and beautiful as it absorbs all historical and cultural legacy of a nation.

So, knowing other languages not only benefits us with more opportunities and perspectives, but makes us more tolerant, open-minded, intelligent and creative.

Essay: My future profession

Change is live.  Static is death. Everything and everybody must change for live. The moment you stop developing – you are out. That’s true for everything starting from plants and animals. For human being that’s also true, but a little different. We are not competing for food any more. As a social creatures we want to be a part of the society, we need to be respected, recognized, useful. And that is done via job, via profession we choose.

In average we spent 8 hours a day at work. Some people might think that work time is distracted from our live because only after work you can have fun spending money hard earned during the work time when you have to do something unpleasant just to be able to do what you really want to do after work. Miserable and pitiful people they are. Eight hours a day is a decent part of our life. I do not want to waste that time. I want to enjoy that time. How do I enjoy that time? Choosing a profession that I love. 

In a modern world one of the biggest problem mankind facing is a human health. And that is where I want to work. I know, that’s not easy. In order to be successful in the healthcare field, I need to pose certain skills and abilities. One of the essential skills is an ability to love people. I must be able to treat and respect my clients in order to maintain their trust and support. As well as readiness and acceptance. I have to be precise and confident in my actions. I have to be able to accept the consequences if something goes wrong. There may be times when an emergency occurs and the environment gets chaotic. But, on the other hand, what could be better, what could be more demanded and rewarding then help people live healthier lives? 

Retrieve SharePoint Online system page html content programmatically (PowerShell)

How can I get HTML content of a SharePoint online page from code, e.g. PowerShell?

Invoke-WebRequest returns “Sign in to your account” page, not a real page, even with -Token option.

Thanks to Denis Molodtsov, the solution is found. It turns out the “Invoke-PnPSPRestMethod” PnP cmdlet works not only against /api endpoints, but also against site pages and system pages.

But (as per my experience) it works only with PnP.PowerShell and with -UseWebLogin authentication option and with -raw parameter.

Connect-PnPOnline -url $siteUrl -UseWebLogin
Invoke-PnPSPRestMethod -url /_layouts/15/viewlsts.aspx -Raw

Other combination of authentication options ( -interactive, -clientId, -Token, -SPOManagementShell, -PnPManagementShell ) – worked well, but only for /_api endpoints, and gave me “401 UNAUTHORIZED” against system/site pages.
Unattended authentication (with clientId, clientSecret and certificate) – same.

Legacy PnP module SharePointPnPPowerShellOnline did not work at all: “EXCEPTION,PnP.PowerShell.Commands.Admin.InvokeSPRestMethod”.

I tested it with
– SharePointPnPPowerShellOnline v 3.29.2101.0 (under Windows PowerShell 5.1) and
– PnP.PowerShell 1.8.0. (both Windows PowerShell 5.1 and .net core PowerShell 7.1.5)

in the middle…

It happened in the middle of 1990-x. I just started to work on software company in Almaty as a computer engineer. The company had a customer in the city of Kustanai. I was sent to Kustanay to solve some problem.
It was winter. Winters in the north-Kazakhstan are pretty cold. Business-trip turned-up a little longer than I expected. At the end, day of flight home came. By this time I had run-out of money and worm clothes.
A Little digress from the topic. I used to travel a lot – by plane, by train and even by ship. I used to be petty experienced traveler. What I do not like at all – is crowds and queues. But when you are travelling by plane, you have to be in queues and among the crowd. You have to stay in the row before check-in, then before security, customs, passport control etc. When boarding announces – everybody rush to the gate and stand at their feet half an hour in the row. Usually in such a situation I sit down somewhere near and wait until everybody is boarded, then, among the couple of the same calm as myself, I get on the plane.
But that time something went unusual. I had been waiting on the bench, and thinking of home. And when boarding was announced, I decided not to wait until the very end, but rushed among the others to the gate. There was no bus. All passengers had to walk across the take-off field, at night, at cold, when the wind knocked you down. Again, I was not first, but was not last one.
The plane was Yak-40, a little jet, designed for 50 seats. The entrance was at the back side of the plane. Convertible back door serves as a stairs when got back. I got on the plane, took my seat and then heard a noise from the back door. A flight attendant, strong woman, blocked access to the plane, standing in the doorway. I was heard something like “Stop, get out of plane. We have no free seats more.”
Passengers were trying to climb. There was almost a fight. A man in the uniform – a second pilot – stout man – hurried to help the flight-attendant. They managed to push people out and closed the door. The plane took off. I was sitting in my seat, in the warm cabin, on the way home, thinking of people who had stayed behind, along, in the middle of the airfield, in the cold night.

Search Unified Audit Log Daemon Job

How to run “Search-UnifiedAuditLog” in unattended way, i.e. non-interactive.
What are the minimal permissions required?

The PowerShell code:

$clientId = ""
$cPwd = ConvertTo-SecureString -String "" -AsPlainText -Force

$cPath = ""C:\Users\UserName\Certificates\Cert.pfx""
$organization = "contoso.onmicrosoft.com"

Connect-ExchangeOnline -CertificateFilePath $cPath -CertificatePassword $cPwd -AppID $clientId -Organization $organization

[DateTime]$start = [DateTime]::UtcNow.AddMinutes(-45)
[DateTime]$end = [DateTime]::UtcNow
$resultSize = 1000

$results = $null
$results = Search-UnifiedAuditLog -StartDate $start -EndDate $end -ResultSize $results.Count
$results | Select-Object RecordType, CreationDate, UserIds, Operations -First 3

Disconnect-ExchangeOnline -Confirm:$false

Troubleshooting

The error “The term ‘Search-UnifiedAuditLog’ is not recognized”:

Search-UnifiedAuditLog: C:\scripts\PowerShell.auth\Search-AuditLog-w-App.ps1:16:12
Line |
16 | $results = Search-UnifiedAuditLog -StartDate $start -EndDate $end -Re …
| ~~~~~~
| The term 'Search-UnifiedAuditLog' is not recognized as a name of a cmdlet, function, script file, or executable
| program. Check the spelling of the name, or if a path was included, verify that the path is correct and try again.

means a proper administrative role (e.g. “Exchange administrator”) is not assigned to the app.

References

PowerShell Script to Fetch All Alerts from SharePoint Online Site

PowerShell Script to get All Alerts of all Users from a specific SharePoint Online Site Collection, including subsites:

https://github.com/VladilenK/PowerShell/blob/main/reports/Site/Fetch-All-Alerts-from-SPO-Site.ps1

https://raw.githubusercontent.com/VladilenK/PowerShell/main/reports/Site/Fetch-All-Alerts-from-SPO-Site.ps1

based on Salaudeen Rajack:
SharePoint Online: Get All Alerts from a Site Collection using PowerShell

Microsoft 365 Search: roadmap and announcements

updated: Feb 13, 2022

(Old/Classic) SharePoint Search: content-centric (SharePoint Search Center)
(New/Modern) Microsoft Search: people-centric (Teams, Office, OneDrive, Delve etc.)

Office graph = codename for collective set of services and insights we generate on top of the infrastructure that fast office graph group developed 
= social Intel concepts (SharePoint home, Delve, OneDrive Discoverview) are derivatives of Office graph 

Microsoft Graph = API ( including universal search API)
The Graph Search API went General Availability (GA):
– Microsoft Search API in Microsoft Graph
Use the Microsoft Search API to query data
Microsoft Search API Code samples, Tutorials at github

Microsoft Search API provides one unified search endpoint that you can use to query data in the Microsoft cloud – messages and events in Outlook mailboxes, and files on OneDrive and SharePoint – that Microsoft Search already indexes.

Turing technology – understands you, answers your question e.g. hover over doc -> doc summary (based on “deep speed” AI model)
announcement at Ignite Spring, more on Ignite Fall 2021

Modern Search: MS nailed the fundamentals, now start bringing it everywhere  – to Teams first, then SharePoint (said Nov 2020).

Modern Search Customizations  – we’ll take the best from Classic SharePoint Search,
a lot will retire – investing in more flexibility  

PnP modern Search
– custom result pages, webparts, branding theme; filters, refiners, scoping control  ) 
pnp modern search – webparts (video)
https://microsoft-search.github.io/pnp-modern-search

Core idea behind Microsoft search is coherence 

Bill Baer:
People use search in a different ways 
1) you have organisations who have a well-established intranet built around set of governance controls, a very clean architecture and they want to build a search into that intranet scenario; that’s why a lot of SharePoint capabilities are going to come along with Microsoft search for that particular endpoint
2) then you have other people who live their day in teams

Updates

Shared search engine results page (developed once – transitioned everywhere)
Ctrl-F to search through teams (chats?) (contextual search)
Natural language search (starting from Outlook)
Image search (before eoy), + 

Metadata content type search Syntex customers will be able to use content type to search in the advanced search flyout in document libraries that contain content types beyond the default types. Syntex only.

Conversations: teams chats, outlook groups conversations, yammer conversation can be found under Conversations vertical in Bing search. Later – in Office.com and SharePoint landing page.
E-mail messages are added to Conversations vertical in Bing search

Bookmarks (new promoted results), acronyms, Q&A – all under “Answers”

Bookmarks Targeting – for the specific audience based on device/OS, Country/Region, security groups…

SharePoint Search Admin Center -> will be migrated from SharePoint admin center to to Microsoft Search Admin Center transitioning (Search and Intelligence Admin Center) – long-running project custom dictionaries, spelling suggestions – will retire, (move to a graph-driven speller) 

+ Viva Topics – based search capabilities

  • Create Topic Answers with Microsoft Viva Topics to bring together people, content, and information (including synonyms and acronyms)
  • Knowledge answers provide a direct answer to questions authoritative information in an organization across SharePoint and OneDrive content
  • Files/Calendars/Links answers

Graph Connectors
Graph Connectors are generally available (ADLS – Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2, Azure DevOps, Azure SQL and Microsoft SQL Server, Enterprise websites, MediaWiki, File share, Oracle SQL, Salesforce, Jira, Confluence, ServiceNow + 100+ from partners; New connectors coming to Microsoft Search: Jira Graph connector, Confluence Graph connector).

Graph Connector allows to connect external source of information to Microsoft 365 and makes that data available across all m365 apps and services so you can find what you need wherever you’re working, whether in one of your favorite productivity apps or one of the many Microsoft 365 services such as SharePoint or Office.com

Graph Connectors roadmap:

Actionable experiences
Search results on select Graph connectors will soon support actions that will allow users to interact with the result and perform changes to the Connector content within the Search application.

Results clusters
The results shown in a result cluster are grouped together based on the search vertical configuration.

Profile Query variables
Define any attribute from the user’s Profile, as a query variable and it would be resolved during query evaluation (This feature is currently in preview)

Profile enrichment with Graph connectors
…you will soon be able to enrich Microsoft 365 profile properties like Job title, Phone numbers, Skills etc. with data from HRMS systems using graph connectors. …then surface this rich profile information on people experiences like profile cards.

Search Federation
federation capabilities will allow enterprises build and integrate their custom LOB search experiences, customized search providers, into the overall Microsoft Search. With federated search, you can make information from systems where the data cannot leave the systems boundaries available to search across in Microsoft 365 productivity apps and services, without indexing its data with Microsoft Search.

Azure Cognitive Search Federation

PowerBI search vertical

Custom verticals and custom refiners

Custom result templates – search layout designer – wysiwyg editor
Manage search result layouts
Microsoft Search Layout Designer

Standalone Search  – AAD identity – Graph connector – Ingest your data – use Search = in Windows 10, Office.com  ( e.g. for those who have their data in other productivity suite, have no intent to use m365, but want to search)

More info:

References

Bill Baer “Making the most of Microsoft Search” @ MS Ingnite fall 2021

Current state of SharePoint Search and Microsoft Search scopes

https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/microsoft-search-blog/microsoft-search-at-ignite-2020/ba-p/1651098

https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/microsoft-search-blog/what-s-new-for-microsoft-search-ignite-2020-edition/ba-p/1675291

Bill Baer: What’s new and what’s next for Microsoft Search (May 25, 2021)

Bill Baer on Search:

Microsoft 365 Search Roadmap

Hair Care

One I decided to grow hair… It was just for the sake of experience – I always wanted to see “what if…”. Do I have split ends? What is my hair type? How to brush? etc… Long story short – I grew hair…

I thought all that marketing tricks like “this shampoo is only for that type of hair” or “you should use conditioner after shampoo” do not make sense. Honestly, I thought all these hair care products are just an instrument to swindle money. I did not know that I need to dry my hair…

Lucki me, I have a friend who is a professional hair stylist. She’s in her business for 20+ years, and she with her husband recently moved to Minnesota and opened a beauty studio in Ridgedale center in Minnetonka. So I got some useful advices.

But what’s the best is that they have a hair care online store where you can find hair care products from top professional brands – Alterna, Aluram, BaByLiss, Global Keratin,
Hempz, JBH, Keratherapy, Keratin Complex, Matrix Biolage, Milbon, Moroccanoil, Redken, STMNT, Verb etc. I recommend.

References

Connect to SharePoint Online and MS Graph Interactively with Client App and MSAL token

Scenario

You have got a Microsoft 365 subscription with SharePoint Online. You use PowerShell, PnP.PowerShell module and MS Graph API to work with SharePoint under current user’s credential. So you need to authenticate to SharePoint Online via Connect-PnPOnline and to Microsoft Graph API interactively on behalf of a user.

Problem

Unfortunately, both “Connect-PnPOnline -Interactive -Url <siteUrl>” or “Connect-PnPOnline -UseWebLogin -Url <siteUrl>” might fail with something like “Need admin approval”, “App needs permission to access resources in your organization that only an admin can grant. Please ask an admin to grant permission to this app before you can use it.” or similar

Solution

  • register an Azure App. Choose “single tenant”
  • configure authentication blade:
    – add platform – “Mobile and Desktop app”
    select “https://login.microsoftonline.com/common/oauth2/nativeclient”
    add custom Redirect URI: “http://localhost”
  • configure API permissions blade:
    – add delegated permissions you need (refer to specific API you’ll use)
    e.g. Microsoft Graph Sites.FullControl.All and SharePoint AllSites.FullControl
  • use the following code samples

PnP.PowerShell

$siteUrl = "https://contoso.sharepoint.com/teams/myTeamsSite"
$appId = "" # Client Id
Connect-PnPOnline -ClientId $appId -Url $siteUrl -Interactive
Get-PnPSite

A pop-up window will appear to authenticate interactively. If you are already authenticated with another credentials (or single-sigh-on) – an interactive window might pop up and disappear – that prevents you enter your other id.
To ensure Connect-PnPOnline prompts you for your credentials – use ” -ForceAuthentication” option.

If you are a SharePoint tenant admin – you can connect to a tenant with:

$orgName = "yourTenantPrefix" 
$adminUrl = "https://$orgName-admin.sharepoint.com" 
$appId = "" # Client Id 
$connection = Connect-PnPOnline -ClientId $appId -Url $adminUrl -Interactive -ReturnConnection # -ForceAuthentication 
$connection 

Microsoft Graph API

Use MSAL.PS module to get an msal token then use token in Microsoft graph-based requests:

$tenantId = ""
$clientid = ""
$url = ""
$token = Get-MsalToken -ClientId $clientid -TenantId $tenantId -Interactive

By default token expires in ~ 1 hour. But you can refresh it silently.
This helps you in long-running PowerShell scripts that takes hours to complete.
So you can include something like this in the loop:

if ($token.ExpiresOn.LocalDateTime -lt $(get-date).AddMinutes(10)) {    
  $token = Get-MsalToken -ClientId $clientid -TenantId $tenantId -ForceRefresh -Silent    
  Write-Host "Token will expire on:" $token.ExpiresOn.LocalDateTime
}

Application permissions

Somehow using Connect-PnPOnline with AccessToken option did not work if the token was acquired with MSAL.PS interactively. But it did work when you get msal.ps token unattended (using App credentials). So…

If you can get an Application (non Delegated) permissions to your azure-registerd-app,
you can use msal token to connect to site with PnP

=========================

NB: For delegated permissions, the effective permissions of your app are the intersection of the delegated permissions the app has been granted (via consent) and the privileges of the currently signed-in user. Your app can never have more privileges than the signed-in user.