Bulk Mail Protection in EOP

Anyone using Office365 or using Exchange Online Protection (EOP) are about to see a change in how bulk mail is handled. Microsoft consider bulk mail to be a category in between spam mail and good mail and have started assigning a Bulk Complaint Level (BCL). This level is determined by EOP based on the mails compliance with good sending practices and customer feedback. Like with Spam Mail, administrators will be able to configure a threshold where action against the bulk mail can be taken. In the case of bulk mail, the action will be to treat it as spam. For more details see the article at http://blogs.office.com/2014/11/24/block-spam-holiday-season-new-enhanced-bulk-mail-experience-eop/

Creating PowerShell Custom Objects

Whilst rarely needed when running PowerShell commands in the console, creating custom objects can be a useful technique when writing scripts or functions.  The typical use of custom objects is where you want to retrieve information from multiple sources and combine it for manipulation or display purposes.

There are several different ways that we can go about creating custom objects.  These include:

  • Abusing an existing object
  • Creating a PSCustom object
  • Creating a PSCustom object from a hash table
  • Build your own .NET class (PowerShell 5.0)

Abusing an Existing Object

The –Property parameter of Select-Object will allow you select the properties of an object to be used subsequently in the pipeline.  One use of this is to return fewer properties than were previously used, but if you specify a name of a property that does not exist, Select-Object will actually add a property with that name to the object.  String objects have few existing properties, so are a good choice for creating a custom object, an empty string probably being the best bet. Continue reading Creating PowerShell Custom Objects

Office 365 and Lync External Contacts

Setting up an Office365 account is a very straightforward process.  Very quickly you can be up and running with Online Exchange and Lync.  If you wish to use your own domain name instead of an onmicrosoft.com name then you will need to add that domain to Office365 and modify half a dozen DNS records in your domain (full instructions are included on the Office365 site).

However, the default configuration will not allow you to use the Lync client to communicate with External contacts.  The error message when you try is none too helpful.  To enable this you will need to go the Office365 Lync Control Panel and under Organization select the External Communications tab.  Here you can change the setting to allow external access.