Enabling guest access in Microsoft Teams: patience, patience…

I wanted to enable guest access in Microsoft Teams, in order to be able to invite external users to a team.

There are some interesting checklists and how-tos:

Microsoft Teams Guest Access checklist

Turn on or off guest access to Microsoft Teams

But the most important thing to know is in the second document: It takes 2 hours to 24 hours for the changes to be effective across your Office 365 organization. We are maybe not used to waiting anymore when it comes to IT stuff, but in my case it really took more than 15 hours for the setting to become active. So be patient :–)

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Microsoft Teams for Mac: login fails with endless loop

I wanted to use the Microsoft Teams app on macOS to login to my personal Office 365 account, but I recently used it to login to my corporate account. That did not work out very well: Teams got into an “endless loop” asking me to sign in over and over again. It looks like Teams has some issues when switching between different accounts.

I got this solved by opening Keychain Access, and deleting the entry called Microsoft Teams Identities Cache. After that, I could sign in to Teams again with the correct account.

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My Top 10 Tools for Learning in 2018

Jane Hart is gathering votes again for her annual “Top tools for learning“. You have until September 21 to contribute, and results will be available on October 1.

Here is my top 10 for this year:

  • Microsoft OneNote: still the best note-taking application. Unbeatable in combination with SharePoint or OneDrive, and a tablet pc with a digitizer pen (like the Surface, or recently the new iPad with the stylus). It is fully cross platform with a nice and stable client for OS X! (personal and professional learning)
  • Wallabag: a self-hosted “Read Later” web application (or Pocket competitor), that allows you to capture websites via a “bookmarklet”, tag and store them for later. For those who don’t want to give all their data away and don’t mind playing with a webserver, it is a must try. (personal and professional learning)
  • WordPress: excellent blogging platform. Recent releases have been focussing on the usability for the writer, and it is setting the standards for usability. I’m looking forward to their update that has the new editor. Administration is a piece of cake, even for non-tech users, with e.g. the auto-update feature. (personal & professional learning)
  • Office Lens: a Microsoft mobile app (Windows, iOS, Android) that “scans” about everything with the camera of your phone. I especially like the way it “straightens” pictures of documents, whiteboards, flipcharts…
    Invaluable for capturing the notes of a meeting, or “scanning” a document when you don’t have a scanner. (personal and professional learning)
  • Fever: this “self-hosted Google Reader” is still my main information hub, gathering hundreds of RSS feeds that would otherwise be impossible to follow. Fever is unfortunately no longer maintained by his author, but it remains very stable. (personal & professional learning)
  • Office 365: the “swiss army knife” of productivity tools: enterprise-grade e-mail and calendar, SharePoint sites for collaborating or storing knowledge, and OneDrive that has 1TB of storage and that is a serious competitor for tools like Google Drive and DropBox. The price is very reasonable and once everything is set up for your domain, it “just works”. (personal and professional learning)
  • Mindmeister: mindmapping tool with extensive possibilities and a very good iPad app. (personal and professional learning)
  • Twitter: if you don’t mind reading an occasional rant or filtering out the corporate BS, the best way to generate your own “information streams” about various subjects. (personal & professional learning)
  • Microsoft Teams: gradually replacing Microsoft Lync as a communication tool, and trying to compete with Slack. I’m still discovering all the possibilities, but the integration with SharePoint and OneNote looks very promising (workplace learning).
  • Microsoft To Do: Microsoft recently acquired Wunderlist, and Microsoft To Do will hopefully gradually integrate all the nice features of this “GTD” app. It is still a bit rough on the edges, but with a nice iPhone app and a good Windows client, it is keeping me organised throughout the day. (personal and professional learning)
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Password autofill on iOS with external keyboard

I recently got a Logitech keyboard case for my iPad. The thing works fine, but what was very annoying is that the iOS password autofill is not working when the external keyboard case is connected. It simply does not suggest usernames and passwords for sites where you have saved them in your keychain.

This is probably a security feature, but you can use the following workaround to access your saved usernames and passwords: go to Settings, General, Keyboards and activate the option Shortcuts.

Whenever you visit a logon page now for which you have saved your password, a small bar will appear at the bottom of your screen, with a Passwords button. Tap the button to access your saved passwords.

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Convert a VMware Fusion virtual machine to VirtualBox on mac

I needed to convert a virtual machine created on VMware Fusion 9, to make it run on VirtualBox 5. To do that, you need to convert the virtual machine to the Open Virtualisation Format (.OVF).
These are the steps to accomplish this:

  • Locate the file of the VMware virtual machine you want to convert
  • Right-click and select Show Package Contents
  • Copy all these files to a new folder
  • Download and install the VMware OVF Tool. This is a command line tool that will do the conversion.
  • Open Terminal and execute the following command
    ovftool <source image>.vmx <target image>.ovf

    The conversion can take quite some time. For me, it took about 3 hours for a 140 GB Windows 8 image

  • Once the conversion is finished, open VirtualBox and from the File menu, select Import appliance

After the import, power on the VM, uninstall the VMware Tools and install the VirtualBox Guest additions.

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