Everything You Need to Know About Power Platform - February 2021
Surprisingly, there was a lot this month. With Ignite coming in just a few days I am happy to report lots of little new things made their way to preview. Dataverse for Teams got some new pieces, Power BI got more security and a few more fun things. So, give it a read and get ready for Ignite. We have some cool stuff planned to give you a rundown of Ignite afterward so be on the lookout.
Dataverse for Teams got two new templates
You are exploring Dataverse for Teams, aren’t you? That ability to build apps, workflows, and chatbots all with a Dataverse backend inside of a Team. Which uses your existing licensing making it… FREE to you. It is great functionality you should be leveraging today. They also have four different template apps to help you be productive on day 1. The new templates for Milestones and Bulletins are announced here. And unlike the classic Power Apps templates that had no value these templates are awesome.
Dataverse for Teams also now supports direct access via Excel
Back in the day when I had to learn Dataverse the thing that made the lightbulb ? come on for me was the Excel add-in. Being able to see the raw table data and manipulate it let me connect all of the dots. So when Dataverse for Teams (D4T) rolled out I was quite sad it was a missing feature. Well, not anymore. Microsoft announced it was available to use. I was so excited I even made you a video on Excel add-in for Dataverse for Teams. Aren’t I the best?
New Power Platform Connectors
I need to get out my abacus and count how many these makes. Microsoft just added 12 more connectors that let you do all types of things. From GDPR compliance and training to specialized 3rd party integrations and portals you will see a nice mix. And while no one of these excites me, the fact that more and more 3rd parties invest to expose their platforms to us via connectors does! Check out the full list here.
Say Goodbye to Traditional PC Lifecycle Management
Traditional IT tools, including Microsoft SCCM, Ghost Solution Suite, and KACE, often require considerable custom configurations by T3 technicians (an expensive and often elusive IT resource) to enable management of a hybrid onsite + remote workforce. In many cases, even with the best resources, organizations are finding that these on-premise tools simply cannot support remote endpoints consistently and reliably due to infrastructure limitations.
Power BI goes public preview of Object-Level Security
Cool. More security is always more better. (Yes, my English is terrible) The idea is now not only can you secure your data for your report viewers, but you can also secure the actual object. So, if you have that chart for all of the ways Chewy is better than the other employees you can hide that so viewers who aren’t privileged to such a visual don’t even know it exists. This feature will require Premium or Pro licensing. You can read more and how to get started here.
Power Apps preview reusable code in canvas apps components
This is very exciting, especially if you have a developer background. The idea is now you can add functions and formulas into your Power Apps components which means you can write it once and then reference that functionality via accessing the component. I literally had a customer call this morning where this is a total game changer. They have a 50-line block of formulas that is repeated on 12 different screens in their app today. When this feature goes to general availability, we will package that up into a reusable component and maintain 50 lines of code going forward, not 600. ? Very excited for this announcement.
Microsoft Dynamics 365 Preview app now in the Windows Store with Offline
Microsoft is rolling out a new Microsoft Dynamics 365 app for Windows users that will allow them to have offline functionality for model-driven apps. Not something I use often since I am not a Dynamics person but I can tell there are some very excited users who do. Learn more about the new app here.