Helping people to automate their workplace is my passion and lucky for me I also get paid to do so !
This week I was finishing working with a partner to improve the (poor) automation steps required by Matter Center, which no-one can really complain because Microsoft made it open-source.
Matter Center documentation requires to create each client as a new site collection in PowerShell, but this is not quite possible if the users registering these new clients on a daily basis are regular Office 365 users and not SharePoint Administrators.Thanks to a few Nintex Workflows we managed to do all the configuration in the background.
Thanks to a few Nintex Workflows we managed to do all the configuration in the background.
Now this quick blog post is regarding the challenge that we had to add the user as a Site Collection Administrator of that newly created site collection.
Since there is no mention of the sort in https://community.nintex.com it may useful for someone, so here it is:
- Create a new Nintex workflow in an Office 365 site list.
- Download and Import the .NWP workflow file available here to replace the blank workflow
- Edit a few of the actions at the beginning of the workflow to set the variables (I never hard-code UserName and Password for instance, so you will see a few Lookup to a different list to get the value, which you can replace since they will be showing an error once imported into your list)
Note: In this workflow, the “user” I am adding to the Site Collection Administrators group is actually the “CreatedBy” of the list item, which may sound strange since the user running that workflow may be the CreatedBy. However this is NOT the case (refer to above point: we do not want all users to be SharePoint admins!), here is how you should sequence the workflow to start:
1) After the List Item is created, a first workflow (run by CreatedBy) i.e. called “Start and Call workflow 2” and in the workflow we just add a “Start Workflow”
2) then within that first workflow we just add a “Start Workflow” making sure that this action is bein executed in an “App Step” in order to use “elevated privilege”.
3) finally all the actions are happening in Workflow2 (which you imported in step 2)
Hope this helps someone.
After the first funny quotes started some years back with the 404 not found pages showing “oops… something happened”, making them more friendly and less scary, it seems that the whole IT industry is trying to have humour, even on “serious” screens like Office 365 Admin center…
I think I like it! better have fun at work, right? (and with all the TV geeks in SharePoint, it makes sense…)
Office 365 has humour
Over the past days several Office 365 client users reported a OneDrive For Business synchronisation issue, and I have to say that I usually just direct them to the IT Helpdesk but yesterday I decided that there was one too many so I went to troubleshoot it at a user’s desktop myself.
Nothing could be done to fix the random “red” icon when adding a SharePoint library to sync with user’s windows, remove the folder from OneDrive, uninstall and re-install OneDrive, none. And literally random, some files were also synchronising but still marked as red, and the Errors logs showing “please enter your credentials” but no option to enter them…
I was in a dead-end, until I found out that it is a current issue reported on the 15th October 2015 (5 days ago) and is actually clearly showing in the SHD (Office 365 Service Health Dashboard in the Admin center, see below post on Office 365 community). The resolution is to update Office 2013.
But my main take away from this is that as much as I thought that no-one would seriously read the SHD every morning (and you can’t receive them by email!), I now realised that I should have started searching through the various incidents list, so I will pay more attention in the future when an user issue comes up.
I believe we have had so much frustration over the years of not finding the answer in Microsoft provided sources that we (I) have the reflex of Googling (binging..) an issue straight away and not actually checking the official source.
Now go on your mobile device and make sure you have the mobile app to see SHD installed !
Office 365 Service Health Dashboard
This issue is now reported at Service Health Dashboard (SHD) as incident SP31654 starting at Thursday, October 15, 2015, at 3:00 PM UTC. The user experience of this incident is: Affected users are unable to sync files with OneDrive for Business. Users may see repeated prompts to enter their credentials, but entering them will not result in a successful sync. Tenant administrators can view current information and updates on SHD at the link here .
Source: Onedrive Business Sync – Credentials Required | Manage Office 365 | Microsoft Office 365 Community
So nice to be on Office 365 and not having a weekend downtime to upgrade a third party tool.
(read my comments on each item below)
We’ve made some changes since last time…
- Workflow Gallery
- Complete the work faster and with fewer clicks. When opening Nintex for Office 365, you’ll now see an entry page instead of the design canvas. From this entry page, you can create new workflows, modify existing workflows and delete unwanted workflows. Depending where you are in a workflow design when you open Nintex, it will display the relevant actions for that context first and then a secondary set for other workflows. Read more…
[FS] Opening an existing workflow was a bit puzzling vs. on premises Nintex because it would always open blank until we open it manually as if opening a previous version. Now it doesn’t feel like we have lost them, they are visible.
- Task Escalation
- We’ve now introduced the option of escalating a task to someone else or completing a task after a set period of time. Find this capability within the Assign a Task and Start a Task Process actions. Read more…
[FS] This is excellent. We already had it on premises for a long time, now on Office 365.
This means that we can build something like: if a task is still awaiting a Manager who has not completed it within 5 days then Nintex Workflow will escalate automatically to another person to approve such as the manager of that last task assignee. Real business value !
This week I am off to Paris with my little family, and on Saturday I will enjoy spending my day with the French SharePoint community and presenting my views and case study of using OneDrive for Business in Office365. I will be presenting [en Français] which I have not done for years, so be sure to hear some weird “fran-glais” as the technical terms are all in english for me.
The title was actually “Shall we forget about taxonomy with Office 365?” which refers to the fact that OneDrive for Business allows users to store a crazy-full amount of files on the cloud and the question that stands: what to do with all this ? What about my team sites, department sites, organised libraries with metadata that I have been telling and training my users to maintain for years ?
Do I have to forget everything I learnt ?
See you on Saturday to see how some of my clients are managing this question!
À Samedi pour voir comment certain de mes clients gèrent cette problématique d’entreprise!
Ready – Set – Go … All set for presenting 2 great sessions tomorrow in Hinckley Island Leicestershire :
10:00 – We previously demonstrated the PowerBI for an end user’s point of view and showing how easy it can be to create beautiful reports and visualisation, now let’s look at it from an IT-Pro viewpoint, i.e.
.how do I bring my on premise data source into it securely ?
.how do I schedule a data refresh ?
14:15 – I will also join up Ben Ahmed to demonstrate how to deploy a “massive” SharePoint farm using the new Azure Portal in only a few minutes, we will also discuss the Pros and Cons of using a fully automated, semi-automated and manual deployment in this context, giving real life examples.
See you tomorrow, and as always , come and say Hi during the day and at the SharePint at night as well.