EMS license assignment to all users made easy

So you’ve purchased Microsoft’s Enterprise Mobility Suite (EMS) licenses, now you need to assign them to users within your organization. A typical situation will be that you already have Office 365 licensed users, and it make sense that all of them will get EMS licenses too.

To achieve this, I would suggest using an Azure AD group with Dynamic Group membership. in this example, the group will include accounts that match ALL these conditions:

  • Enabled users accounts
  • Users with an email address
  • Users with a-non empty Usage Location
  • Synchronized user accounts

Within the Azure AD management portal (http://manage.windowsazure.com) navigate to your Active Directory tenant, and perform the following:

  1. Create a group in Azure AD
  2. Enable it for Dynamic Membership
  3. Enter the advanced rule: (user.accountEnabled -eq “true”) AND (user.mail -ne $null) AND (user.usageLocation -ne $null) AND (user.dirSyncEnabled -eq true)
  4. Assign EMS licenses to the Group

You can read more about Dynamic Group Membership here:

http://blogs.technet.com/b/ad/archive/2015/03/09/attribute-based-dynamic-group-membership-for-azure-ad-premium-is-now-in-preview.aspx

https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/documentation/articles/active-directory-accessmanagement-groups-with-advanced-rules/

You can also assign licenses with the following methods:

  1. Using the Office 365 Portal – like you would add Office 365 licenses.  This was made available late 2015 – http://blogs.technet.com/b/microsoftintune/archive/2015/09/01/intune-and-ems-subscriptions-now-available-in-the-office-365-portal.aspx
  2. Using Azure AD PowerShell – http://blogs.technet.com/b/treycarlee/archive/2013/11/01/list-of-powershell-licensing-sku-s-for-office-365.aspx ,you can use the following example to assign EMS licenses (with all options) only to users with an Office 365 E3 license:
    $EMSSKU = (Get-MsolAccountSku | ? { $_.AccountSkuID -like "*:EMS"})[0].accountSkuId
    Get-MsolUser -All | ? { $_.licenses.accountsku.SkuPartNumber -eq "ENTERPRISEPACK"} | Set-MsolUserLicense -AddLicenses $EMSSKU
  3. Azure AD Graph API – https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/azure/ad/graph/api/users-operations#FunctionsandactionsonusersAssignalicensetoauser

Enjoy

ilantz

High Resolution User Photo Synchronization to Office 365

There are some known limitation and inconsistency with user photos synchronization from Active Directory (using the thumbnailPhoto attribute) to Azure AD and Office 365 apps: Exchange, SharePoint and Skype for Business (aka Lync), specifically if you want to upload high resolution photos of your users that will span across all of Office 365 services.

After spending some research time around this issue, here are my findings:

So to summarize at this point, we want to import high resolution photos to our users. If we rely on the thumbnailPhoto attribute value from Active Directory, we will end up with low resolution images (needs more JPEG effect) or inconsistent results if we look on the SharePoint case.

To upload high resolution photos to Office 365, you should use Set-UserPhoto. This approach works great for Exchange Online, Skype for Business and Azure AD. Although promising, my testing (and others..) showed that if your users’ photos were previously synced to SharePoint Online – they will not necessarily be updated using this method.

Here is my take on solving this, in a somewhat chronological order:

  1. If you need your on-premises thumbnailPhoto attribute populated, keep your current practice of maintaining them.
    1. To avoid future inconsistencies – use “Azure AD app and attribute filtering” to filter out thumbnailPhoto using Azure AD Connect – Custom installation of Azure AD Connect
  2. Utilize the Set-UserPhoto cmdlet in Exchange Online PowerShell to upload your users high resolutions (648×648 px) photos
    1. Note Uploading High Resolution Photos using PowerShell for Office 365 to workaround – “The remote server returned an error: (413) Request Entity Too Large” error if you get this.
  3. To upload your users high resolution photos to SharePoint online use the Core.ProfilePictureUploader sample app from the OfficeDev PnP GitHub repo.
    1. To make this easier to non coders 🙂 I’ve complied the code sample for your usage – http://ilantz.com/files/Core.ProfilePictureUploader.zip
      1. Get the source code here and also make sure to read the FAQhttps://github.com/OfficeDev/PnP/tree/master/Samples/Core.ProfilePictureUploader
      2. Follow the explanations in the GitHub page link above around how to run the utility (configuration.xml , the CSV input file and the command syntax).
      3. Make sure your pictures are JPEG files…
    2. This sample app is also documented here, with some additional explanations – Upload user profile pictures sample app for SharePoint

That’s it !

Hope this helps anyone, please comment if it did.

ilantz