How to

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Anonymizing and masking sensitive data in SQL databases before migrating to Azure SQL

  • How to

Many companies I interact with have expressed an interest in migrating their legacy SQL Server databases to Azure. Typically this is due to End of Life for SQL Server 2008 (and 2008 R2) and other times it’s a desire to perform reporting and analytics on existing data in the cloud. (I wrote about migrating to Azure SQL previously here) Mostly this is all documented nicely on docs.microsoft.com (Dynamic Data Masking, Static Data Masking) but what… Read More »Anonymizing and masking sensitive data in SQL databases before migrating to Azure SQL

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One password to rule them all: Migrating to 1Password from KeePass and text files

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I can’t quite remember when I started using a password manager, or which password manager it was at the time. As an IT Pro I’ve used everything from text files stored on Windows Desktop to encrypted Excel files to post-it notes to reusing the same password (“R3member1”, “R3m3mber2”..) to forgetting my password and resetting it. Repeatedly. I left Microsoft exactly 10 years ago, and we started our own company with my brother. I had amassed… Read More »One password to rule them all: Migrating to 1Password from KeePass and text files

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Migrating SQL Server 2008 databases to Azure SQL

“This is a quick one”, I thought. A customer asked me to have a look at their old CRM environment, that was running in a local physical server in their datacenter. The plan was to decommission the server, but rescue the CRM database. I knew I could lift-and-shift the database or databases to Azure SQL quite easily. This post walks through my experience and some of the challenges I encountered. Provisioning Azure SQL I received… Read More »Migrating SQL Server 2008 databases to Azure SQL

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An adventure in containers and command-line tools: Running MongoDB in Azure

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I’ve used a Synology NAS solution at home since 2012. It’s simply great – very affordable, runs everything I need and has consistently given me uptimes of 60-90 days (I reboot it mostly to patch things up). In 2015 my Synology model (a DS412+) received an upgrade enabling it to run something called Docker containers. I’d read by then about Docker, and containers of course. It reminded me of 1996 or 1997, when VPN as… Read More »An adventure in containers and command-line tools: Running MongoDB in Azure

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The comprehensive licensing guide to Microsoft Power Automate (formerly Flow) and Power Apps

NOTE: I’ve joined Microsoft, and will no longer update this guide after December 16th, 2019. This is both because my role within Microsoft isn’t geared towards licensing, and also because I feel the guidance on the Power Platform licensing becoming more clear and transparent. [Last update: November 27, 2019: Many updates; New recap section in the beginning; Additional considerations; Cleaned up certain old and irrelevant content; More clarity for Power Automate and Power Apps per… Read More »The comprehensive licensing guide to Microsoft Power Automate (formerly Flow) and Power Apps

Automation made easy: Using Microsoft Visio to create Flows

  • How to

One of the most anticipated features since September for me has been the ability to use Microsoft Visio to plan and create Flows. This capability is now in public preview, and part Visio. What follows is a walkthrough of my first Flow that I created with Visio. Requirements You will need the following to be able to follow up on this walkthrough: A working Office 365 tenant – if you don’t have one, provision one… Read More »Automation made easy: Using Microsoft Visio to create Flows

I want to become a carpenter – and here’s my plan

I’ve thought about becoming a carpenter for as long as I can remember. The idea of crafting something out of a solid block of wood is enticing, and I’m pretty sure I’d excel, or even master carpentry given some time and practice. Unfortunately, I’ve worked in all things IT for about 25 years, so there are many things I should probably unlearn, and many things I have to learn. But I’ve got a plan, so… Read More »I want to become a carpenter – and here’s my plan

Managing your costs in Microsoft Azure with Sharegate’s Overcast

  • How to

I started using Microsoft Azure in the very early days in 2008, when the whole idea with cloud computing was something very different than it is today. During recent years I’ve found myself working mostly with Azure-related architectures, deployments and governance projects as the platform has matured to fit any type of customer need. One recurring challenge I find many organizations facing is the shift from capital expenditures (CAPEX) to operational expenditures (OPEX). Traditional IT… Read More »Managing your costs in Microsoft Azure with Sharegate’s Overcast

Using Logitech BRIO 4K webcam with Windows Hello

I’ve recently started working more from home. Family is keeping me quite busy, so I try to optimize the little time I can by not traveling to the office each morning. This isn’t something new for me, as I’ve had a workstation at home for about 30 years, butI’ve spent more time and energy on having a pleasant setup at home for working. The setup is something that works quite well for me: a dedicated,… Read More »Using Logitech BRIO 4K webcam with Windows Hello

Teams, Teams, Teams!

Teams, Teams, Teams!

  • How to

Yesterday Microsoft announced Microsoft Teams, which is a new service in Office 365. It is an integral part of Office 365 Groups, which again is an integral part of the future of collaboration in the cloud. You can access Teams on your own Office 365 subscription at https://teams.microsoft.com. Diving in I am a huge believer in trying, and possibly failing fast. A bit after last night’s announcement I activated Teams on my own company’s production… Read More »Teams, Teams, Teams!