MS-500 Microsoft 365 Security Administration Exam Study Guide

This summer, Microsoft announced changes to the MS-500 exam objectives. Below you’ll find the updated listing for June 2020 and beyond with links to relevant documentation. The best way to use this study guide is to find the topics you’re least familiar with and focus on those. In any remaining time, you can always review those you’re familiar with to make sure nothing has changed significantly.

As stated on the MS-500 exam page, potential candidates for the MS-500 exam implement, manage and monitor security and compliance solutions for Microsoft 365 and hybrid environments. Professionals familiar with the content of the exam are well-positioned to secure their Microsoft 365 environments by responding to threats, performing investigations, enforcing data governance, and collaborating with other enterprise professionals on security and compliance topics.

Register for the MS-500 exam

Skills measured

  • Implement and manage identity and access (30-35%)
  • Implement and manage threat protection (20-25%)
  • Implement and manage information protection (15-20%)
  • Manage governance and compliance features in Microsoft 365 (20-25%)

MS-500 Study Guides

Objectives with online documentation for study

Implement and manage identity and access (30-35%)

Secure Microsoft 365 hybrid environments

Secure Identities

Implement authentication methods

Implement conditional access

Implement role-based access control (RBAC)

Implement Azure AD Privileged Identity Management (PIM)

Implement Azure AD Identity Protection

Implement and manage threat protection (20-25%)

Implement an enterprise hybrid threat protection solution

Implement device threat protection

Implement and manage device and application protection

Implement and manage Office 365 ATP

Implement Azure Sentinel for Microsoft 365

Implement and manage information protection (15-20%)

Secure data access within Office 365

Manage Azure information Protection (AIP)

Manage Data Loss Prevention (DLP)

Implement and manage Microsoft Cloud App Security

Manage governance and compliance features in Microsoft 365 (25-30%)

Configure and analyze security reporting

Center

Center

Manage and analyze audit logs and reports

Manage data governance and retention

Manage search and investigation

Manage data privacy regulation compliance

Image thumbnails not showing in SharePoint Server 2019 modern/new library experience

One of the best perks of upgrading to SharePoint Server 2019 from previous versions is the introduction of the modern/new list, library, and page experience. Modern web parts and layouts become available, lists look sleek and closer to what users are seeing in O365 in hybrid environments, etc.

It recently came to my attention, however, that the new list experience in picture and document libraries doesn’t render image thumbnails. According to Mike Lee in this thread, thumbnails in the modern/new experience rely on a cloud-based microservice that is incompatible with SharePoint 2019. Users, instead, just see image icons where thumbnails should be:

The only workaround in SharePoint 2019 to see image thumbnails in picture and document libraries is to revert to the classic experience. Each user can do this for themselves if we leave the default experience setting, but we want to force all users to use classic and not have the choice of using modern if we want them to see thumbnails.

Go to User Voice and vote for this issue to be resolved, adding support for image thumbnails in SharePoint 2019 modern experience views. In the meantime, here’s how you can change a library’s default experience back to classic:

Set library view to classic experience

1. Go to Library settings (settings wheel in upper right > Library settings).

OR if you’re already viewing classic experience, Library settings is found in the Library ribbon menu.

2. Click Advanced settings.

3. Scroll to the very bottom and for List experience select Classic experience.

4. Click OK.

Now all users will see the classic experience and not have the choice of toggling back to modern where thumbnails cannot be shown.

Get cooking with Office 365: Two new O365 “cookbooks” from Packt to add to your shelf

I recently had the privilege to write an Office 365 administration cookbook for Packt intended for O365 administrators. “Cookbooks” take a large topic, like O365 administration, and divide it into major subject areas each with their own set of “recipes” or step-by-step guides to complete popular tasks.

My friends Gaurav Mahajan and Sudeep Ghatak also wrote an O365 cookbook for Packt that is written for the end-user audience. I was honored to be able to write a foreword for their book, and am impressed with the amount of knowledge they’ve captured and shared in their nearly 800-page cookbook.

  • M365 and SharePoint Online Cookbook – Buy Here
  • O365 Administration Cookbook – Buy Here

More information on each can be found below:

Microsoft 365 and SharePoint Online Cookbook

Embrace modern solutions to enhance collaboration, teamwork, robotic process automation, and business intelligence in your organization using powerful Microsoft 365 services (formerly Office 365)

Key Features

  • Gain a complete overview of popular Microsoft 365 services using practical recipes and expert insights
  • Collaborate with your team and external users effectively using SharePoint and Teams
  • Create no-code and low-code solutions, such as bots, forms, dashboards, and workflows, using the Power platform

Book Description

Microsoft 365 in an integrated suite that provides intelligent tools for managing everyday organizational tasks like content management, communication, creating reports, and automating business processes. With this book, you’ll get to grips with popular apps from Microsoft, with a focus on enabling workspace collaboration and productivity using Microsoft SharePoint Online, Teams, and the Power Platform to name a few.

In addition to guiding you through the implementation of Microsoft 365 apps, this practical guide helps you to learn from a Microsoft consultant’s extensive experience of working with the Microsoft business suite. Starting with a quick overview of the M365 ecosystem, the book covers recipes for implementing SharePoint Online for various content management tasks. You’ll learn how to create sites for your organization and enhance collaboration across the business and then see how you can boost productivity with apps such as Microsoft Teams, Power Platform, Planner, Delve, and M365 Groups. Using a step-by-step approach, you’ll also find out how to use the Power Platform efficiently, making the most of Microsoft PowerApps, Power Automate, PowerBI, and Power Virtual Agents. Finally, the book focuses on the SharePoint framework, which helps you to build custom Teams and SharePoint solutions.

By the end of the book, you’ll be equipped with the skills required to set up Microsoft 365 and SharePoint Online and be ready to enhance business productivity using a variety of tools.

What you will learn

  • Get to grips with a wide range of apps and cloud services in Microsoft 365
  • Discover ways to use SharePoint Online to create and manage content
  • Store and share documents using SharePoint Online
  • Improve your search experience with Microsoft Search
  • Leverage the Power Platform to build business solutions with Power Automate, Power Apps, Power BI, and Power Virtual Agents
  • Enhance native capabilities in SharePoint and Teams using the SPFx framework
  • Use Microsoft Teams to meet, chat, and collaborate with colleagues or external users

Who this book is for

This book is for business professionals, IT administrators, enterprise developers and architects, and anyone who wants to get to grips with using M365 for effective implementation of Microsoft apps. Prior experience with Office 365 and SharePoint will assist with understanding the recipes effortlessly.

Table of Contents

  1. Overview of Microsoft 365
  2. Introduction to SharePoint Online
  3. Working with Modern Sites in SharePoint Online
  4. Working with Lists and Libraries in SharePoint Online
  5. Document Management in SharePoint
  6. Term Store and Content Types in SharePoint Online
  7. OneDrive for Business
  8. Search in Microsoft 365
  9. Office Delve
  10. Microsoft 365 Groups
  11. Microsoft Teams
  12. Yammer – The Enterprise Social Network
  13. Power Automate (Microsoft Flow)
  14. PowerApps
  15. Power BI
  16. Power Virtual Agents
  17. Planner
  18. Custom Development – SharePoint Framework
  19. Microsoft 365 on Mobile
  20. Appendix

Microsoft Office 365 Administration Cookbook

Make the most out of your investment in Office 365 apps and services with this Microsoft Office cookbook

Key Features

  • Learn how to manage and secure the entire Office 365 stack in addition to specific services
  • Delve into newer and frequently shifting areas such as Power Platform, Microsoft Teams, and Microsoft Search administration
  • Discover carefully selected techniques that cover a range of administrative tasks of varying difficulty levels

Book Description

Organizations across the world have switched to Office 365 to boost workplace productivity. However, to maximize investment in Office 365, you need to know how to efficiently administer Office 365 solutions.

Microsoft Office 365 Administration Cookbook is packed with recipes to guide you through common and not so common administrative tasks throughout Office 365. Whether you’re administering a single app such as SharePoint or organization-wide Security & Compliance across Office 365, this cookbook offers a variety of recipes that you’ll want to have to hand. The book begins by covering essential setup and administration tasks. You’ll learn how to manage permissions for users and user groups along with automating routine admin tasks using PowerShell. You’ll then progress through to managing core Office 365 services such as Exchange Online, OneDrive, SharePoint Online, and Azure Active Directory (AD). This book also features recipes that’ll help you to manage newer services such as Microsoft Search, Power Platform, and Microsoft Teams. In the final chapters, you’ll delve into monitoring, reporting, and securing your Office 365 services.

By the end of this book, you’ll have learned to manage individual Office 365 services along with monitoring, securing, and optimizing your entire Office 365 deployment efficiently.

What you will learn

  • Get to grips with basic Office 365 setup and routine administration tasks
  • Manage Office 365 identities and groups efficiently and securely
  • Harness the capabilities of PowerShell to automate common administrative tasks
  • Configure and manage core Office 365 services such as Exchange Online, SharePoint, and OneDrive
  • Configure and administer fast-evolving services such as Microsoft Search, Power Platform, Microsoft Teams, and Azure AD
  • Get up and running with advanced threat protection features provided by the Microsoft 365 Security & Compliance Center
  • Protect your organization’s sensitive data with Office 365 Data Loss Prevention (DLP)
  • Monitor activities and behaviors across all Office 365 services

Who This Book Is For

This book is for newer Office 365 administrators and IT pros alike, and comes with recipes of varying difficulty levels along with step-by-step guidance. Whether you are new to Office 365 administration or just seeking new ideas, this cookbook contains recipes to enhance your organization’s app and service management and productivity.

How to clear the SharePoint Server configuration cache using PowerShell

If you have several servers in your SharePoint Server (on-premises) farm, repeating the manual steps for clearing the configuration cache on each can be time consuming. PowerShell really shines in situations like these to help us be more productive and efficient.

The following PowerShell script can be used to clear the SharePoint configuration cache on a server. I’ve recently tested this on SharePoint 2019 servers with success. Just be sure to run it on each server for which you’re clearing the cache, then remember to go back to each and press “ENTER” in each PowerShell window as the script instructs you so that it restarts the timer service after all servers have had their cache cleared.

This script follows the same steps you’d perform manually. It loads the SP snap-in if needed, stops the timer service, deletes the xml files in the Config directory, sets the cache.ini file’s value to 1 to reset the cache, then restarts the timer service (once you press Enter).

Clear SharePoint configuration cache using PowerShell

  1. Run PowerShell as administrator (right-click, run as administrator).
  2. Copy and paste the following script, making no changes to its contents. It will work as-is.
  3. Hit Enter to run the script (unless using ISE, then click “Run”).
  4. Repeat steps 1-3 for each SharePoint server on which you’re clearing the cache.
  5. When this has run on all SharePoint servers you wish, go back to each and hit Enter in PowerShell to restart the timer service on each.

Elevate your career by attending the free #GlobalCon3 virtual summit this summer

Microsoft 365 Virtual Conference for the community

If you’ve attended a Collab365 event in the past, you’re probably as excited as I am for the next upcoming iteration of their GlobalCon series.

You can join us on one or all of the following parts of GlobalCon3: 

  • July 15th, 2020 (Beginner’s Day)
  • August 11th-12th (Power Platform Day)
  • September 8th-11th (Main Event)

GlobalCon2 had over 20,000 sign-ups this year and popularity is continually increasing. People are becoming more familiar with Microsoft 365 everyday especially as our workplaces embrace and improve digital and remote collaboration.

Spots are filling up fast for GlobalCon3 and you don’t want to miss out on the exciting things they have to offer! New features are being introduced this year that will allow for more networking and collaboration opportunities.

Register for free

Sign up is free but be sure to check out the amazing upgrade options they have to enhance your experience. Right now you can get them at a discounted rate (prices will be listed but are subject to change very soon!)

Get access to all the knowledge GlobalCon3 has to offer:  Register (FREE!)

Or consider these content-packed upgrades:

All-Access Pass:

With the All-Access Pass you get lifetime access to every single GlobalCon3 session (and 10 EBooks), All content from the GlobalCon1 Summit (31 sessions and 10 EBooks), you also get their Teams Training videos by Matthew J Bailey MVP as well as the Excel training videos to share with your internal teams. 

Right now you can get all this for the low price of $67! Price may increase soon!
Buy the All-Access Pass ($67)

Ultimate Bundle:

Purchase the Ultimate Bundle and you can start learning IMMEDIATELY! the bundle offers 76 videos and 50 EBooks.

Buy this right now at the discounted price of $179. Price may increase soon!
Buy the Ultimate Bundle ($179)

My imperfect Humans of IT (HoIT) blog post

I’m thrilled and humbled to have had the opportunity to be a guest blogger over on Microsoft’s Humans of IT (HoIT) blog. My post is about balancing all our obligations, embracing imperfection, and leaving room for joy in our endeavors.

You can read the post here.

Shoutout to Shona, Ally, Oniel, and William for the opportunity and helping to make the post the best it can be.

If you’d like to apply to be the next HoIT guest blogger, you can do so at aka.ms/guestbloggers.

Disable read receipts and typing indicators in LinkedIn messages

It can be difficult to keep up with all the messages in LinkedIn that come in from colleagues, old friends, recruiters, and bots. Even if you have every intention of replying at a later time, your message buddy can see that you’ve seen their message but chose not to reply immediately. This can add false tension or anxiety to the communication, or just send a signal to the other party that’s unintended such as how you might value that person or their objective. Your message buddy can also tell when you’re typing and may be anxiously awaiting what you have to say even if you change your mind and delete the draft, leaving them hanging.

Let’s reduce some stress and disable read receipts and typing indicators so you can reply when you’re able with the peace of mind that no unintended feelings were conveyed when skimming between meetings. Just keep in mind that if you do this others won’t see that you’ve read their message or a typing indicator when you type AND you won’t be able to see the same from anybody else. Disabling it from applying to you removes your ability to benefit from it applying to others.

How to disable typing indicators and read receipts in LinkedIn messages

1. Go to LinkedIn and log in.

2. Select your profile menu then Settings & Privacy.

3. Select Communications at the top navigation menu.

4. Click Messaging experience on the left.

5. Next to Read receipts and typing indicators, click Change.

6. Toggle the option to the off position. It saves automatically.

How to make your LinkedIn profile private and only accessible to logged in users

By default your LinkedIn profile may appear in public search results and individuals who aren’t logged in to LinkedIn can see some of your information (depending on the privacy settings of each component as you added it to your profile). This public/anonymous access is also what allows Outlook to find your profile as a potential match for you if you haven’t connected your profile yet.

Note: Connecting to LinkedIn at work requires that your administrators enable LinkedIn connections.

In this post we’ll go through the steps to disable your public profile so that only logged in users may connect with you and/or view your profile in whole or part depending on your settings.

How to disable your LinkedIn public profile from anonymous access

1. Go to LinkedIn and log in.

2. Select your profile menu then Settings & Privacy.

3. Next to Edit your public profile, click Change.

4. Toggle the Edit Visibility option to the off position. It saves automatically.

You could, alternatively, just restrict which content appears publicly. Instead of step 4, leave it toggled in the on position and choose which items below it should be available.

As you make changes, the preview on the left will update to show you what anonymous users will see when on your profile but not logged in.

How to disable access to your profile for LinkedIn partners and permitted services like Outlook

1. Go to LinkedIn and log in.

2. Select your profile menu then Settings & Privacy.

3. Next to Profile visibility off LinkedIn, click Change then change the toggle to the off position.

Personalize/customize your LinkedIn profile URL

I still see a lot of LinkedIn profile URLs including generic alpha-numerically decorated user names. Let’s clean that up and make it unique and intentional.

For example, if you don’t change your URL it may still be something like:

….linkedin.com/in/nate-chamberlain-ab1234567/

But you can update it to something that looks great on a resume and every other profile, such as:

….linkedIn.com/in/nchambe/

Better, right? Let’s do it.

How to customize your LinkedIn profile URL

1. Go to LinkedIn and log in

2. Select your profile menu then Settings & Privacy.

3. Next to Edit your public profile, click Change.

4. In the upper right-hand corner, select the pencil icon under Edit your custom URL to edit your URL.

5. Enter your preferred URL suffix and click Save.

6. If available, you’re done! If unavailable, try another suffix. FYI – “AWESOME” is not available.

Add a thumbnail column for documents and media in a SharePoint Online document library

Mark Rackley recently tweeted about the ability to create a calculated column in SharePoint online document libraries that would automatically render thumbnails for documents. In the GIF from his tweet, it shows how this works for media files.

Naturally curious, I had to see how this worked for documents of .docx, .pdf, .pptx, etc. types. What I found is that it only currently supports some file types:

Supported file types (there’s likely even more I didn’t test):

  • Word (.docx)
  • PDF (.pdf)
  • Emails (.msg)
  • Images (.png, .gif, .jpg, etc.)
  • Media (.mp4)

Not-yet-supported file types:

  • Excel (.xlsx)
  • OneNote (.one)
  • PowerPoint (.pptx)

Create a thumbnail column in SharePoint Online document libraries

1. Add a new column to your document library (library settings > Create column).

2. Set the column name to Thumbnail. As for type, you have two options:

  • Leave type as Single line of text. Thanks to Dario Cassinerio for sharing that Single line of text type works as well as (and more simply than) Calculated set to [Title].
  • Mark Rackley suggests sticking with Calculated set to [Title] (see example screenshot) to prevent users from editing the text field in forms.

3. Click OK.

Supported file types will have thumbnails rendered (like .docx and .pdf in the example below) and others will just be blank (like .pptx and .xlsx in the example below).

Click to enlarge

Here is an animation demonstrating the entire process, start to finish using Single line of text as column type:

Click to enlarge

And another animation but using the Calculated column set to [Title] type:

Click to enlarge