Tag Archives: Azure

Microsoft Azure Data Factory connect to SharePoint

Let me share here

  • how to connect to SharePoint list from Azure Data factory and
  • how to deal with connection error code 23201 “Failed to get metadata of odata service, please check if service url and credential is correct and your application has permission to the resource

Scenario

You are configuring Azure Data Factory pipeline. You want to connect to SharePoint List as a data source.

To establish connection to SharePoint site you need to provide
Site Url, tenant Id, service principal Id and service principal key:

Service principal

Service principal here could be

  • SharePoint app-only service principal registered at SharePoint site
  • Azure registered app

In both cases you get “service principal Id” – which is App Id or Client Id and “service principal key” which is app secret (client secret).

Note: in Sep 2023 Microsoft implemented update to all Microsoft 365 tenants. According to the update, by default only tenant administrators can create or update ACS service principal by default. If site collection admin starting from Oct 2023 can register SharePoint app-only spn via appregnew.aspx or provide ACS-based permissions via appinv.aspx – that means tenant admins switched this back.

So, if registering a new SharePoint app-only service principal is still available for your tenant – you can get service principal Id and key from SharePoint via appregnew and/or provide ACS-based permissions via appinv – and there should be no problem connecting to SPO list from ADF.

If a site collection administrator or owner tries to register app in SharePoint with appregnew.aspx or provide permissions to the app with appinv.aspx – and he/she gets:
Your SharePoint tenant admin doesn’t allow site collection admins to create (update) app permissions. Please contact your SharePoint administrator:

Your SharePoint tenant admin doesn’t allow site collection admins to create an Azure Access Control (ACS) principal

that means registering service principal in SharePoint is disabled. In this case Microsoft recommend using Azure application registration – with MS Graph API Sites.Selected and SharePoint Sites.Selected API permissions configured, consented by tenant admin and with access to specific SharePoint site provided by SharePoint admins (refer to this article for more details).

Issue

If you obtained service principal Id and key as Azure Registered App – connection to SharePoint site from Azure Data Factory does not always works. When you configure connection and click test – you might get an error:

error code: 23201

error details:

Failed to get metadata of odata service, please check if service url and credential is correct and your application has permission to the resource. Expected status code: 200, actual status code: BadRequest, response is : 
...
    <title>Request Error</title>
<body>...
      <p class="heading1">Request Error</p>
      <p>The server encountered an error processing the request. See server logs for more details.</p>
...</body>

Reason

So the issue above is a combination of two controversial circumstances:

  • Microsoft discourages using SharePoint app-only service principals and disabled ability for site owners to register SharePoint app-only service principals and provide ACS-based permissions in favor of Azure Registerd Apps with Sites.Selected based permissions.
  • Azure Data Factory still require ACS-based permissions

Solution

If Microsoft disabled ability for site owners to to provide ACS-based permissions for the app – that does not mean it is fully disabled. It turns out – SharePoint admins are still able to register SharePoint app-only principals and provide ACS-based permissions.

The recommended steps are:

  1. register Application in Azure (not in SharePoint) to get App (client) Id
    this could be done by user from Azure App Registrations (or, if this ability is disabled by tenant admin – there must be a way for users to request an application registered in Azure)
  2. provide to this App Id ACS-based permissions at the target SharePoint site via appinv.aspx – this is done by a person who got at the same time two roles
    • SharePoint admin role enabled and
    • The specific site collection administrator permissions

Technical Details

Actually, the only you need is to provide any ACS-based access for the application. Even to another site, web or list. You can also remove this just provided ACS-based access.
It seems like the moment you click “Trust” when you provide access via AppInv.aspx – something is triggered in Microsoft Identity Management token issuing mechanics so Azure Data factory connection starts working (assuming Sites.Selected access was provides).

Surely connection will work if you provide only ACS-based permissions (with no Sites.Selected permissions), but this is what we all want to avoid by any means.

More fun! Connection to entire site will start working even if you provide SharePoint app-only (ACS-based) permissions to some specific list. Though later, when you try to ingest data – you will be able to ingest only this list data.

Environment this is tested:

Powershell module used to enable/disable
16.0.24120.12000 Microsoft.Online.SharePoint.PowerShell

SiteOwnerManageLegacyServicePrincipalEnabled = False (almost always)
SiteOwnerManageLegacyServicePrincipalEnabled = True (when provide ACS)

LegacyAuthProtocolsEnabled = True
LegacyBrowserAuthProtocolsEnabled = True
BlockAppAccessWithAuthenticationContext = False
DisableCustomAppAuthentication = False

About Sites.Selected

Microsoft implemented Sites.Selected API permissions for Azure registered apps in 2021-2022 as a preferred way to access specific SharePoint site with application credentials. Microsoft recommend using Azure registered apps instead of SharePoint App-Only service principals and “softly” push developers toward Azure registered apps. Microsoft recently (Aug-Sep 2023) implemented an update and pushed it to all existing Microsoft 365 tenants – so that ability for site admins to register service principals at sites is turned off by default.

So starting Aug-Sep 2023 site owners/admins cannot register and provide ACS-based permissions for apps to their SharePoint sites.

References

FastAPI on Azure Functions with Azure API Management

Following Pamela Fox tutorial “FastAPI on Azure Functions with Azure API Management“.

The idea is to deploy FastAPI to Azure Functions the way auto-generated interactive documentation would be public, but actual API would be protected. Pamela solved it with Azure API Management and subscription keys:

“One of my goals was to have the documentation be publicly viewable (with no key) but the FastAPI API calls themselves require a subscription key. That split was the trickiest part of this whole architecture, and it started at the API Management level.”

Pamela published it in 3 parts:
– the idea and solution explained under her blog: FastAPI on Azure Functions with Azure API Management
– code and some initial steps at GitHub: pamelafox/fastapi-azure-function-apim
– video with more deploying details at YouTube: Deploying FastAPI app to Azure Functions + API Management

I will just repeat all the steps in this one-pager.

Environment I use: Linux Ubuntu + VS Code with “Dev Containers” extension and azd

  1. Clone https://github.com/pamelafox/fastapi-azure-function-apim
  2. Start visual studio code and reopen the project with container
  3. ensure it works locally with
    PYTHON_ISOLATE_WORKER_DEPENDENCIES=1 func host start
  4. Deploy it to Azure functions with (you’d answer questions):
    $ azd auth login
    $ azd init
    $ azd up
  5. Go to API management Service, Subscriptions, Add subscription, copy the key (secure it)
  6. From API management service, Overview – open Gateway URL and append it with “/public/docs”
  7. Try GET /generate_name as is – you’ll get “401”
  8. Try the same with subscription key – you’ll get “200”
  9. Save Request Url to call the API from your front-end app

Nest steps:

  • calling other APIs
  • connecting to Databases
  • using secrets

Track SharePoint App-only Service Principals in Microsoft 365

Update (May 2023):
You can use Get-PnPAzureACSPrincipal to returns the lists of all Azure ACS principals installed in your Tenant including subsites.

Scenario

Developers in the organization can use both – Azure Apps and SharePoint Apps to work with SharePoint sites in their “daemon” applications.

It is recommended to use Azure apps so, you want to know – what are SharePoint Apps registered and their owners, who registered SharePoint Apps. Eventually you would disable SharePoint Apps-only principal but before that you’d move Devs from SP-App-only to Azure App (see Disable Custom App Authentication).

(SharePoint App-only service principals aka SP-App-Only are SPN or App registered from within SharePoint using AppRegNew.aspx system page).

One of the approaches is to track Apps/Owners with Unified Audit Log

Use Unified Audit Logs

The following PowerShell code:

$operations = 'Add service principal.'
$recordType = 'AzureActiveDirectory'
Search-UnifiedAuditLog -StartDate $start -EndDate $end -ResultSize $resultSize -Formatted -Operations $operations -RecordType $recordType

returns events with operation = ‘Add service principal.’ Nice, but…
if an app was registered in Azure – event contains an UPN under UserIds property:

Unfortunately, in case with registering app in SharePoint, an audit log event will be like:

i.e. UserId registerd is “spo_service@support.onmicrosoft.com”, so we do not know who registered a SharePoint-only app

In theory – we could use events recorded immediately before and after “Add service principal” event to track a user and site who has registered a SharePoint-only app… But for me it seems like too complicated for automation.

Instead we can do simple search through audit log for events “AppRegNew.aspx page visited”. This gives us a good approximation of who registered SP-App-only principal. Worst scenario – we reach more people than we really need (including those who started registering sp-app-only but did not complete) but all of them would be definitely our target auditory.

Consider the following code:

$freeText = "appregnew"
$operations = 'PageViewed'
$recordType = 'SharePoint'

$results = Search-UnifiedAuditLog -StartDate $start -EndDate $end -ResultSize $resultSize -FreeText $freeText -Operations $operations -RecordType $recordType 

this would give you all users who loaded “/_layouts/15/appregnew.aspx” page

Update: Sites.Selected API MS Graph permissions was introduced by Microsoft in 2021. It was a good move towards site-level development, but still developers were limited with only what MS Graph API provides for SharePoint dev.
So devs had to use AppInv.aspx at site level to provide ACS permissions to their apps to be able to use SharePoint CSOM and REST APIs.
Recently Microsoft introduced Sites.Selected SharePoint API permissions for registered Azure Apps! So now devs should be fully happy without ACS-based permissions.

References

Access SPO Site Programmatically via MS Graph API and SharePoint API

Scenario

You are a software developer. Your company uses Microsoft Office 365 (SharePoint, Teams etc.). The need is to work with a specific site collection programmatically (from code – Python, C#, Java, PowerShell, JavaScript etc.) – e.g. upload/download documents, update list items, search etc.

The code must run without user interaction (unattended, aka daemon app). Sometimes this is also called “SharePoint Automation”.

The solution is based on a new Graph API feature – Sites.Selected and a classic SP-Only app.

Solution

  1. Register an Azure App and configure it as usual.
    Select API Permissions blade and add two permissions:
    – Microsoft Graph -> Applications Permissions -> “sites.selected
    – SharePoint -> Applications Permissions -> “sites.selected
  2. Request “Grant admin consent” from a tenant/global admin
  3. Request SharePoint admin to run PowerShell code (e.g. this one) to assign proper permissions to your azure app for a specific site collection (consider site owner consent)
  4. (optionally) Provide SharePoint API permissions:
    (require Site Collection Owner/Admin account) – use
    https://YourTenant.sharepoint.com/teams/YourSite/_layouts/15/appinv.aspx
    to add SharePoint API permissions to your app. E.g. full control permissions to site collection would be
<AppPermissionRequests AllowAppOnlyPolicy="true">  
   <AppPermissionRequest Scope="http://sharepoint/content/sitecollection" 
    Right="FullControl" />
</AppPermissionRequests>

Consider minimal permissions (e.g. Right=”Read” see more with Sumit)

Problem Solved

  • you get access to one and only one site collection (“least privilege” principal)
  • you get both – SharePoint API and Microsoft Graph API permissions to SharePoint
  • you can use app secret or certificate to authenticate – depending on what are your security requirements

Note: if your scenario require authenticated user present – the solution would be a little different: Connect-PnPOnline Interactive with Client App Id

Update:

Sites.Selected API MS Graph permissions was introduced by Microsoft in 2021. It was a huge step forward, but still devs were limited with MS Graph API against SharePoint.
So devs had to use AppInv at site level to provide ACS permissions to their apps to use SharePoint CSOM and REST APIs.
Recently Microsoft introduced Sites.Selected SharePoint API permissions for registered Azure Apps! So now devs should be fully happy without ACS-based permissions AppInv.aspx. (See more here on disabling SP Apps Only SPNs)

Thanks to Leon Armston and Scott Murdock

Update 2:

Microsoft announced end-of-life for ACS permissions, so we’d need to avoid ACS permissions for new development.

References:

Connect-PnPOnline with a certificate stored in Azure Key Vault

Scenario

You run some PnP PowerShell code unattended e.g. daemon/service app, background job – under application permissions – with no user interaction.
Your app needs to connect to SharePoint and/or Microsoft Graph API. Your organization require authentication with a certificate (no secrets). You want certificate stored securely in Azure Key Vault.

Solution (Step-by-step process)

  1. Obtain a certificate (create a self-signed or request trusted)
  2. In Azure where you have Microsoft 365 SharePoint tenant
    1. Create a new Registered App in Azure; save App (client) id, Directory (Tenant) Id
    2. Configure App: add MS Graph and SharePoint API application (not delegated) permissions
    3. Upload the certificate to the app under “Certificates & secrets”
  3. In Azure where you have paid subscription (could be same or different)
    1. Create an Azure Key Vault
    2. Upload certificate to the Key Vault manually (with GUI)
  4. While you develop/debug your custom daemon application at your local machine
    1. Provide permissions to the Key Vault via Access Control and Access Policies to your personal account
    2. Connect to Azure (the one where your Key Vault is) running Connect-AzAccount
      – so your app can get a Certificate to authenticate to SharePoint Online
  5. For your application deployed to Azure (e.g. Azure Function App )
    1. Turn On managed identity (Your Function App -> Identity -> Status:On) and Save; notice an Object (Principal) Id just created
    2. Provide for your managed identity principal Id permissions to the Key Vault via Key Vault Access Policies, so when your daemon app is running in the cloud – it could go to the key Vault and retrieve Certificate

Here is the sample PowerShell code to get certificate from Azure Key Vault and Connect to SharePoint with PnP (Connect-PnPOnline):

# ensure you use PowerShell 7
$PSVersionTable

# connect to your Azure subscription
Connect-AzAccount -Subscription "<subscription id>" -Tenant "<tenant id>"
Get-AzSubscription | fl
Get-AzContext

# Specify Key Vault Name and Certificate Name
$VaultName = "<azure key vault name>"
$certName = "certificate name as it stored in key vault"

# Get certificate stored in KeyVault (Yes, get it as SECRET)
$secret = Get-AzKeyVaultSecret -VaultName $vaultName -Name $certName
$secretValueText = ($secret.SecretValue | ConvertFrom-SecureString -AsPlainText )

# connect to PnP
$tenant = "contoso.onmicrosoft.com" # or tenant Id
$siteUrl = "https://contoso.sharepoint.com"
$clientID = "<App (client) Id>" # Azure Registered App with the same certificate and API permissions configured
Connect-PnPOnline -Url $siteUrl -ClientId $clientID -Tenant $tenant -CertificateBase64Encoded $secretValueText

Get-PnPSite

The same PowerShell code in GitHub: Connect-PnPOnline-with-certificate.ps1

References:

Long-running PowerShell Office 365 reports

(WIP)

PowerShell is our best friend when it comes to ad-hoc and/or scheduled reports in Microsoft 365. PnP team is doing great job providing more and more functionality with PnP PowerShell module for Office 365 SharePoint and Teams.

Small and medium business organizations are mostly good, but for large companies it might be a problem due to just huge amount of data stored in SharePoint. PowerShell reports on all users or all sites might run days… which is probably OK if you run this report once, but totally not acceptable if you need this report e.g. daily/weekly or on-demand.

How can we make heavy PowerShell scripts run faster?

Of course, you start with logic (algorithm) and leveraging full PowerShell functionality (e.g. PowerShell 7 parallelism or PnP batching).

(examples)

What if you did everything, but it still takes too long? You need something like brute force – the closer your code runs to your tenant – the better.
What are the option?
– Automation account runbook (+workflow)
– Azure Function Apps
– Azure VM in the region closest to your Tenant

Automation account runbook (+workflow)

Seemed like a good option, but not something Microsoft promotes. Even opposite – automation accounts support only PowerShell 5 (not 7), no plug-ins for VS Code and recently there were messages on some retirement or smth.

Meantime, I tested it – and did not find any significant increasing in speed. In a nutshell, what is behind this service? Same windows machines running somewhere in Azure .

TBC

References
PnP PowerShell

Exact Location of your SharePoint Online Microsoft Office 365 tenant

Quick answer: spin-up a few VMs in different Azure regions, then ping your SharePoint tenant. The moment you see 1ms ping you know the tenant exact location.

Full story

Microsoft says: “Customers should view tenant specific data location information in your Microsoft 365 Admin Center in Settings | Org settings | Organization Profile | Data location.
And it might look like:

That’s accurate to the geography (e.g. US, UE, AP), but not to the region (for instance – “Central US”, “UK West” or “Australia Southeast”).
In other words, If you know your data are in the US, you do not know where exactly – East/West/Central or South US.
Meantime when you create an Azure resource (e.g. Virtual Machine) – you can select specific region.

How do I know – where is my Microsoft 365 tenant actually located?

Can we just ping the tenant, analyze result and find Office 365 tenant region?
Luckily, SharePoint tenant is pinging with just
PS>ping tenantName.SharePoint.com
I have tested 5 regions and 4 different tenants:

ping from/to (ms)tenant 1 (US)tenant 2 (EU)tenant 3 (US)tenant 4 (US)
North Europe731796101
East US1833931
Central US221142323
West US631463633
South Central US3111211

So I figured it out:
My o365 tenants #3 and #4 regions are South Central US (Texas, San Antonio),
tenant #1 resides in East US.

Why do I need this?

Imagine you are running heavy reports against your tenant.
So probably you want your code running as close as possible to your tenant.
For this, you can spin-up a VM in Azure or use Azure Functions – just select proper region 🙂
(please check also “Long-running PowerShell reports optimization in Office 365“)

References:
Where your Microsoft 365 customer data is stored