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With the continuous learning that comes when working in the IT business and especially considering the Evergreen approach, I’ve decided to document my learnings.
After some consideration, I’ve decided to do this as blog posts I will publish weekly. The purpose of sharing this with the community is to share the exciting things I learned since someone else could use the same information. I will also share any resources I find or use during my learning.
I also do this to show that regardless of how long you’ve been in the business, there are still new things to learn, both large and small.
I hope this is a rewarding approach for everyone and that you find this interesting enough to take part in. 🙂
This week we take a look at Powershell, Winget, Azure AD, and Microsoft Edge.
Use the Import-Excel Powershell module instead of Import-CSV
A colleague showed me some ways of working with Excel and Powershell. It turns out that there are multiple ways of doing this, both using .Net and the Powershell module.
I could, for example, use this when creating batch lists for Exchange migrations. Instead of sending a CSV that will be formatted to death, I can export as an excel file and send it, and import it when I get it back. Hopefully, this could work, and I will definitely use this next time.
Using these tools, you can create spreadsheets with graphs and math without having to open Excel. Perfect when you want to create those reports for Management.
This is the solution that I used, and it works great!
PowerShell Gallery | ImportExcel 7.8.4
View applied current Edge Policies
If you open Microsoft Edge and browse to edge://policy, you will be able to see all policies currently being applied to Microsoft Edge.
This can be useful when testing out new settings from e.g. Microsoft Intune.
For example, with Intune, you can assign policies to configure basic settings that you need for your users.
This could be favorites, the home page, new tab behavior, and such.
Using Dynamic Azure AD Groups
Today I needed to create a group to find out if any users are missing a company name in the directory. First off, I had to create a dynamic group in Azure AD, but I realized that I didn’t know how to use empty values with the queries.
After some testing and digging around, I got to learn that an empty value field in a query won’t do it. Instead, I try with a $null value, as you do in Powershell. Unfortunately, that also doesn’t work. After going through the documentation again, I found some examples where they are using “null”. Let us try that instead.
Finally, we have something that seems to work as we expect.
You can use empty values for the dynamic query. The value to specify is null. If you want an exact match, use the -eq operator.
(user.companyName -eq null)
Very useful to know for creating dynamic groups.
Use WinGet with the Import switch
I can use the Import switch with WinGet to install multiple applications simultaneously using a JSON file. I will use this with Intune to deploy core applications and always get the latest versions!
To export what you have installed with WinGet and build a reference file:
winget export -o .\wingetExport.json
You can then edit this file only to contain the applications you want. I will clean it up and focus on the applications everyone should have, also known as Core Apps.
When you are ready and want to use the JSON file, use the command below.
winget -import .\CoreApps.json
This week we focused on Powershell, Windows 365, and some Microsoft Intune tips and tricks.
- Use the Import-Excel Powershell module instead of Import-CSV.
- View applied current Edge Policies.
- How to use empty properties with dynamic group queries in Azure AD.
- How to use the import parameter with WinGet.