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Showing posts from 2018

Use Microsoft Graph API to extract Excel file contents

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Recently I was working on automating a process that extracts contents from a Excel spreadsheet stored in Office 365 SharePoint Online. It took me quite sometime to figure out how to get this done. I thought there must be people out there looking for the same thing. Hence here is the post. Based on the requirements, the Excel file needs to be shared among few specified staff. They should be able to modify the spreadsheet with their Office 365 accounts. Then a automated process will export the contents of the sheet to an external destination. The first half of the request can be easily achieved with Office 365 Group. While creating Office 365, it generates a SharePoint site for the team (Group Drive), which allows members of the team to share documents within the group. For the second half, we will be using MS Graph along with PowerShell. Microsoft Graph API provides the ability to read and modify Excel workbooks stored in OneDrive for Business, SharePoint site or Group drive, which is e

Understand OAuth and Open ID Connect

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IT world is always full of buzz words. “Digital Transformation”, “Automation”, “Blockchain”, “AI”, “Machine Learning”, etc, etc… We like to talk about them all the time, to show that we are not out of touch, we are up to date. Although I have to admit some of those words are used so often yet so few people have the really proper understanding of the actual technologies themselves. I believe OAuth is one of them. It’s a technology we use everyday, yet if you asked a lot of people why we need it and when to use, I bet not many will be able to explain (well). I hope this article can help you understand the technology better. After read it, hopefully you will at least have a basic idea of what OAuth is. First, instead of providing a Wikipedia type definition for the term, let’s look at what particular technical issue OAuth helps us solve. Like many other IT technologies, OAuth become widely adopted largely thanks for the prosperity of Smart Phones. It solves a key security issue came up wh

How did I pass AWS Solution Architect Professional Exam in just 3 weeks

This post will be a bit different from my usual technical walk through. I recently passed AWS Solution Architect Professional exam with just three weeks of preparation. In this post, I want to share my experience with the exam itself as well as how I prepared for it. Hopefully you will find it somewhat useful. I booked the exam on 1st Oct 2018. Honestly I didn’t expect myself to pass at that time. This was the first time I tried for the Professional exam. I did my SA Associate back in April 2017. I prepared that one for over 2 months. But for this professional one, I only decided to take the exam on 1st Oct after found out the Advanced Architect course I took offered a free exam voucher. I thought to myself, this will just be a good learning experience. But somehow I managed to pass the exam in the end! Now I won’t deny luck plays a big part, given all the answers are in multi-choice format. But there I believe are also other key approaches I took contributed to my pass. After re-track

Deploy Docker Image with AWS ECS (Part 2)

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In Part 1 we uploaded a Docker image to AWS ECR. In this post, we will complete building the ECS Cluster and deploy the container image onto the cluster. Note: The lab I worked on was recreated. The container image was renamed from webfront to testweb. Before we start, you need to understand some ECS basic concepts. Task Definition A task definition describes one or more containers, their relationships, how they should be launched etc. It’s basically a JSON file contains the configuration details of the container(s). Task A task is the instantiation of a task definition. They are created based on the task definitions you provided. Service (Scheduler) In short, the service or service scheduler controls the tasks running across the ECS cluster. Cluster Cluster is the mothership of those tasks. It hosts the containers launched from the tasks. Container Instance By now, AWS ECS offers two types of ECS Cluster: Fargate and EC2. With Fargate, AWS manages the cluster resources for you. With