#Microsoft #MSIgnite Day 1 #Office365 #Cloud #Office #SharePoint

May 5, 2015 at 12:20 pm | Posted in Administration, Functionality, Information | 5 Comments
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I am lucky enough to be at Microsoft’s Ignite conference this week, there are several of my CPS colleagues here with me too: Alan Eardley, Ivan Lloyd and Sacha Cohn. I will try and blog a summary each day if I can.

So on day one we arrived at the conference center ready to start the day. We collected our passes the day before so didn’t have to queue up to do that luckily! When we arrived at 07:30 in the morning I was surprised how many people where there already. After breakfast we headed to the main hall for the keynote, even at 08:10 in the morning there was a swarm of people heading there:



Inside the man hall was very impressive, the pictures below do not do it justice:



The keynote’s were interesting, some new things demonstrated and discussed. This included all of the changes and new features coming to the cloud. These are summarised already on the following Microsoft cloud blog:


Office productivity too:


Also a great demo showing the new features Windows 10 has to offer – having only really read about Windows 10 and not having installed it yet, this was very impressive. I am looking for to this operating system.

Other key announcements were Office 2016 Public Preview, Skype for Business improvements, Sway for Business and Education. A good round up can be found here.

I then went on to look around the Expo hall, WOW this was impressive. So many booths and I would have been there all day if I went to all.

After lunch I went evolution of SharePoint session, the key takeaways for this for me were that the SharePoint 2016 server roles can be set on the install using the configuration wizard. In previous versions the server role was defined by the services that were running on the server, for SharePoint 2016 when running the configuration wizard as you install there will be role options such as Web Front End, Application, Search, Distributed and an option or a customised role. Cache SharePoint 2016 will have “zero down time” patching (great news!) and the are going to be improvements in the hybrid models for the SharePoint 2016 and SharePoint Online. NextGen portals were also mentioned including Delve and Office 365 videos. There will be an update released later this year for SharePoint 2013 to include Delve.

The last session I went to was for Excel 2016, this session gave an overview of what was coming in Excel 2016 client. The key takeaways for me here were that Excel 2016 will have components natively in the product rather than add-ons, by this i mean things like Power Map, PowerPivot and Power Query will be included in Excel 2016 by default and no longer require separate add-ons. The advantage to this is that the usage of these tools will be more intuitive and accessible, this also enables automation of Power Query using VBA etc. There is a new function is Excel 2016 that does exponential smoothing for Forecasting – this was pretty cool how simple Excel 2016 will make forecasting for time series data. Another great feature is the Time Grouping option so that you can group time data by month, by quarter, by year etc. at the click of a button without having to write the DAX query. New chart types will also be in Excel 2016, these include Tree Map, Sunburst, Waterfall, Box & Whisker and Histogram & Pareto.

That’s it for now, hope to have a summary for Day 2 later 🙂



  1. Great report of the 1st day of Ignite. Surely it is not like being there, but gave me good idea of what’s going on.
    Thank you. Well done!

    • Thanks Ricardo.

  2. […] day of Microsoft’s Ignite conference, a summary of my 1st day if you missed it can be found here: https://pwmather.wordpress.com/2015/05/05/microsoft-msignite-day-1-office365-cloud-office-sharepoint… – one thing I did miss off this was the end of the day keynote that gave details into Microsoft […]

  3. […] of SharePoint 2016 has greatly been improved as mentioned here. There is now zero down time for build to build patches with SharePoint 2016 as this a an online […]

  4. […] is I can point you to the great write-up’s done by others (@PWMather‘s posts here, here and here are a great place to start!). What I will do is focus on some of the details that […]

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