Sunday, August 30, 2020

Tips for using Edge in your Microsoft Teams demos - Profiles and Apps

One of the things I do often with customers is demo Microsoft Teams. Given that Teams is a collaboration tool, it's very useful to be able to work with multiple personas in my demos in order to demonstrate different collaboration scenarios. Edge serves me well for this need, particularly with two of its features - Profiles and Apps.

Profiles for your Personas

Profiles are like little browser sandboxes - they keep the cookies, passwords, history etc of a particular user in its own browser session.  While most traditionally used to manage a single persons' 'work' versus 'personal' accounts, they're also extremely helpful for simultaneously working among multiple personas during a demo.

Here, you can see that I'm using three personas in my demo environment - Ricardo, Megan, and the Administrator.  These represent three real and distinct users in my demo tenant:

So, as I browse the web as Megan B, for instance, the browser assumes that persona/credentials throughout my entire session.

I'm now also always 1-click away from using a persona, since I can pin each browser profile to my taskbar:

Among other things, this lets me have [in this case] 3 browser windows open that each behave like unique users. I can have each of them logged into a Teams meeting, fore example, to show different meeting experiences. But one of the most useful scenarios for me is having two users editing the same document, to show real-time co-authoring:

In addition to all these great features, remember that each browser is storing it's own set of cookies and passwords. With this approach, I almost never have to type in a single password for anything I'm accessing, which makes my demos that much more seamless!

Installing sites as Apps

As you might imagine, the Administrator persona is key, since I often have to make configuration or policy changes as part of my demos. In my Admin browser profile, I'm able to navigate to the M365 admin portal and access, for instance, the Teams Admin Center. But given have often this occurs, I also leverage an Edge feature that lets me 'install' that particular website as what appears to be an App in my Windows environment:

After doing so, not only do I now have my Teams Admin Center in it's own app-looking window, but I even have Start Menu buttons pinned and ready to go so that I can later access the Admin Center with just one click! (It also remembers that the Admin Center 'app' should use the MOD Administrator profile)

These features are a must-have if you want to avoid fumbling around for passwords, and to make sure you're able to highlight multi-user scenarios in your demos.

More info:

  • See this in action in this 8-minute video I created for a customer to walk thru how this is done

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