Microsoft Ignite 2017: Journey of an IT Guy – Episode 6

Hello and welcome back to episode 6 of my 6 part series, where I explored the epic journey to Microsoft Ignite 2017, down in Orlando, FL at the Orange County Convention Center, Sept. 25th – Sept 29th. This is it. The final blog entry, this is what you’ve been waiting for. All of the juicy bits from the Microsoft Ignite Conference.

So, what are you waiting for.. Read on for more.

Beginning with the Keynote address, Satya Nadella framed this years MS Ignite as the Ignite of “Digital Transformation”.

“Digital technology is impacting all aspects of our society and economies, creating unprecedented opportunity for organizations of all sizes,” said Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft. “I’m optimistic and inspired by the ingenuity of customers, partners and developers everywhere that are pushing the frontiers of what’s possible with mixed reality and artificial intelligence infused across Microsoft 365, Dynamics 365 and Azure, to transform and have impact in the world.”

In my opinion, this isn’t entirely new stuff here, as Microsoft has been talking about “The Cloud”, and “Transformation”, for quite some time now. So, not too shocking here. Some other key take-a way’s were the replacement of Skype for Business with MS Teams, AI solutions, deeper integration between Microsoft 365 app and flow, Azure stack, as well as many others. If you’d like to read about all of the other announcements, click here. Or if you’d prefer, watch the entire keynote here:


Next, I’ll cover the sessions I attended this year.

The focus for Intertech is looking to leverage Azure in more of our day-to-day operations. We currently use Azure only as a sandbox, however, we are researching how we can harness the power and flexibility of Azure, while sprinkling in some DevOps to automate our process to promote from Dev to Prod. This means working with Visual Studio, and Team Services. Additionally, we leverage Office 365, so I also focused on sessions that revolved around Azure and Office 365 in general, but also specifically around Sharepoint and Exchange online. Additionally we use SCOM 2016 for monitoring and alerting of system issues within our network.

For the sake of keeping this blog post, under 50 pages, I will post the top 8 sessions I attended. I’ll give the brief summary of each session, add any notes or take-a way’s I had, provide a link to the session video, and any slides, if available.

As you will recall from Episode 5 of my series, I was interested in more then 8 sessions, but as I outlined, you cannot always get to every session you want to view. The sessions I was interested in, but failed to attend are listed below.

  • What’s new and upcoming in AD FS to securely sign-in your users to Office 365 and other applications
    • This session discusses incorporating new features from AD FS (Active Directory Federation Services) to be able to login from any location and any type of device.
      • Of interest was the discussion on supporting Windows Hello through ADFS.
    • Slide Deck
  • Accelerate your digital transformation with SharePoint and OneDrive
    • This session is a high level road map on Sharepoint and Onedrive for business. Also discussed are new features coming to both products in the near future.
    • Slide Deck
  • Automate all things! Microsoft Azure continuous deployment
    • This session discussed and provided an example of setting up a release pipeline workflow to develop in Visual Studio, and promote to Azure leveraging Microsoft Visual Studio Team Services.
      • Great demo of using Team Services to setup CI, which shows a build process, and all of the features available within Team Services.
    • Slide Deck
  • Manage hybrid cloud and transform your workplace with PowerShell and Azure Automation
    • In-depth discussions on how to use Azure PowerShell on Windows, macOS, Linux, or from your browser with the Azure Cloud Shell.
      • Automation is essential for DevOps
    • Slide Deck
  • Defense against the dark (cloud) arts: Azure security deep dive
    • Session covers the Microsoft Azure Cloud Security Platform.
      • Fantastic demos of a hack in progress, and how its mitigated.
      • Shows how to use Azure security center to create security policy for patching and protection
      • Shows how to leverage Office 365 Security and Compliance Center
    • Slide Deck
  • Deploying and Managing Skype Room Systems and Microsoft certified devices
    • This in-depth session also walks through the details of how to properly set up your overall environment.
      • Also discussed specifics on tuning the room, and sizing the proper solution
    • Slide Deck
  • Build your personalized and social intranet with SharePoint, Yammer, Delve, OneDrive and Teams
    • Hear how other companies built their intelligent intranets and learn how to use capabilities of SharePoint, OneDrive, Office Delve, Yammer, Microsoft Teams to create cohesive experiences.
      • Hub sites, themes and site design
      • Biz Apps, Flow integration to pipe data into pages
      • Story from Rick Garcia, United Airlines – Building 2016 on-prem farm, upgrading from SP 2010.
      • Story from Brian Duke, Thermo Fisher – Building new intranet
      • Story from Greg Nemeth, EY – Business transformation, vision for 2020 and beyond
    • Slide Deck
  • Case of the unexplained: Windows troubleshooting with Mark Russinovich
    • Finally, always a favorite of mine. In this session, see case studies on how to resolve system and application issues using the Systernals tools.
      • Uses the following tools: Process Explorer, Process Monitor, and Windows Debugger.
    • Slide Deck

List of the other sessions I had interest in, but couldn’t make it.

  • Anti-phishing with Office 365 Advanced Threat Protection
  • Azure hold’em DevOps
  • Azure Networking inside and out
  • Build a modern intranet: Real-world planning, information architecture, governance, and adoption
  • Build your personalized and social intranet with SharePoint, Yammer, Delve, OneDrive and Teams
  • Continuous delivery on Microsoft Azure using Visual Studio Team Services
  • Datacenter transformation – a roadmap for platforms, processes, and people
  • Deep-dive: Azure Active Directory Authentication and Single-Sign-On
  • Empower IT and developer productivity with Microsoft Azure
  • Expert-level Windows 10 deployment
  • Inside Exchange Online
  • Inside Microsoft Azure datacenter hardware and software architecture with Mark Russinovich
  • Learn best practices for SharePoint site owners
  • Manage SharePoint and OneDrive in Office 365: A field guide for administrators
  • Microsoft System Center 2016 in action: Customer use cases to implement today
  • Microsoft Azure and Office 365 together: The modern business development platform
  • Learn about our vision and upcoming innovations for Microsoft Remote Desktop Services
  • Locking down access to the Azure Cloud using SSO, Roles Based Access Control, and Conditional Access
  • Implement best practices with Office 365 Groups
  • The secrets to getting the best experience out of SharePoint Online
  • The Sysinternals tools make you better at your job

And with that, we have reached the end of this series. I hope you have enjoyed reading this blog series as much as I enjoyed creating it for you.

If you want to read any of the other posts in the series, check them out below:

Microsoft Ignite 2017: Journey of an IT Guy – Episode 1

Microsoft Ignite 2017: Journey of an IT Guy – Episode 2

Microsoft Ignite 2017: Journey of an IT Guy – Episode 3

Microsoft Ignite 2017: Journey of an IT Guy – Episode 4

Microsoft Ignite 2017: Journey of an IT Guy – Episode 5

Do you have any questions? Anything you feel I missed? Tell me about it in the comments below.


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