Five Tips to Prevent SharePoint Sprawl

Five Tips to Prevent SharePoint Sprawl

Many companies use Microsoft SharePoint to manage documents and workflow processes, and to help organize all of the communications flying around between various offices. Enterprise clients can even use Office 365 and SharePoint to create websites and chart a course for other kinds of digital and off-line projects. But good SharePoint management goes a long way — and it’s important to understand how this type of software is best used in business.

One particular problem with SharePoint is called “SharePoint sprawl.” This is the idea that over time, the SharePoint architecture, the collections of files, folders and documents organized in the SharePoint system, becomes large, unwieldy and eventually, disorganized.

Here are five ways to control your SharePoint libraries and collections.


What this article is about:


Managing Permissions and Privileges

One of the most fundamental ways to cut down on SharePoint sprawl is to restrict the technical permissions to create new files and folders, or add to the architecture that’s already there. This starts with having a policy for SharePoint creation, and enforcing that policy as rigidly as possible. You might end up having a few point people with advanced permissions and a responsibility to look over the structure from time to time. These auditors can help make sure that the company isn’t generating too much activity that can have a negative impact on how well you organize SharePoint materials.

No Duplicates

It’s also a good idea to be vigilant about duplication. Suppose a document gets created at the team level, and put into a team folder. Maybe at the same time, someone at a management level is opening a folder for a group. Where does that document go? What if it goes both places?

Keeping an eagle eye out for duplicates is part of “pruning” the SharePoint structure to prevent sprawl.

Good Governance

In general, data governance is a concern at most businesses of any significant size.

Data governance, again, revolves around planning and policy. When you start to look at how the business typically generates data, and how it’s stored, and how it moves in transit, there is the capability to fine-tune the data flow for individual business processes. This sets your business up for success, and also prevents the kinds of disorganization that people like to call “sprawl” or “bloating” in a system.

Effective Use of Metadata

Companies can also go over how to use features like tagging and managed keywords in SharePoint. These types of metadata allow for more agile file retrieval and better classification of data objects within the system. When you get acquainted with terms like “folksonomy” and understand collaborative processes better, your SharePoint policies will benefit from that.

Utilize External Software

You can also improve enterprise use of SharePoint in Office 365 with the addition of some third-party tools that help safeguard data in your company systems. Cloudally’s comprehensive backup platform assures that the data you need will be there when you need it — even if it’s months or years in the future. In many ways, managing data in SharePoint or anywhere else is managing a timeline, as well as a volume of data. Any limitations or restrictions in the native applications can be extremely harmful when it comes to processes like e-discovery. Talk to Cloudally about getting real, comprehensive protection for your valuable data. Ask our Support Team for more information.


Now that you know about how to prevent SharePoint sprawl, you might want to have a look at what we created for you…

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How To Simplify Communication & organizational Collaboration with SharePoint!

When SharePoint debuted in 2001, companies saw it as an alternative to self-created intranet sites capable of sharing documents with fellow employees. As Microsoft moved to make all their services available online, SharePoint took its prominent place as part of their Office 365 suite. However, its still viewed as a tool for users to store and share files, while changes in the way companies employ workers dictate a change in how they collaborate. With recent updates in Office 365, SharePoint is becoming a more and more a stronghold for collaboration and communication in modern institutions.


What this article is about:


2016 changes in SharePoint

In August 2016, Microsoft rolled out changes that made SharePoint less of a storage and sharing receptacle and more of a team building site. Transparent collaboration is at the heart of the updates making it easier for colleagues to work together.

With the 2016 updates, SharePoint users gained team site pages creation abilities. These new pages allow Office 365 groups to have a central intranet location to work together. New team sites automatically obtain shared:

  • Inbox
  • Calendar
  • Planner
  • OneNote notebook

New web page parts make it easy for team leaders to create dynamic pages for all group members. On the dedicated team page, administrators can add documents, images, videos, and Yammer feeds. Activity sections of the site contain recent actions on the page, within any lists, or any files that are part of the team site.

Also, members can add quick links to their pages. These quick links appear at the top of the page and can link to URLs from anywhere on the web, other pages or applications, or files.

Because of the new updates, Microsoft determined users need more SharePoint storage for all their team sites. To accommodate, all Office 365 users saw an increase in limits from 1 TB to 25 TB.

These updates rolled out to all users in August 2016. Overall, the updates have allowed greater communication between teams as they work on new projects. As great as the teammate features are, they still missed out on having an exceptional communication tool. That is what Microsoft addressed with their 2017 updates.

2017 Critical Updates for SharePoint

While SharePoint Online 2016 updates focus on team site initiation, updates in the summer of 2017 focus on making communication between team members easier.

New to SharePoint Online is communication sites. Much like team sites, these new pages allow all team members to share recurring updates beyond the use of email. As with the team pages, members can embed documents or videos. Members also can load GIFs on the new communication site if needed.

When creating a communication site, administrators have a choice of three initial site designs:

  • Blank—a blank canvas to allow administrators to create their page using web parts.
  • Topic—useful to share many pieces of information including events and news.
  • Showcase—beneficial to feature photos or images for new products or services.

All communication sites have full-width layout and essential title regions. All title areas come with custom header images.

Additionally, members find real-time information from across Office 365. Included in this real-time stream is:

  • Power BI reports
  • Yammer discussions
  • Microsoft Stream videos
  • Other SharePoint sites

One of the most significant changes is the ability to communicate through the SharePoint mobile app. Users can engage with Yammer and read pages on the site. Additionally, users can create news articles to update other members of the team.

With each news page on SharePoint’s communication update, members can comment on the article using Yammer. The comments can be either targeted or for group discussion.

Team members’ abilities include emailing news articles to other users. Unlike past sharing features, the new share does not just send a link to the SharePoint site. Instead, it generates an informative preview so the recipient can determine if the article is something to read in its entirety.

Especially with the new features Microsoft is adding to SharePoint Online; it is important to have files stored here protected with a backup service. While Microsoft Exchange does have recovery options, they are not substantial enough to be considered valid backup services.

As Microsoft prepares to roll out their Office 2019 in mid-2018, there is speculation over what changes are to be included in SharePoint 2019. While there are no firm details on the layout and design of the new interface, Microsoft announced that the SharePoint hub sites are set to roll out beginning 2018. The new hub sites make it easier for customers to use SharePoint to create a company-specific intranet, giving the team sites and intranet a unified feel. The hub-sites do have mobile devices at heart, making accessing intranet on the go seamless.

IT managers can use CloudAlly to perform automated daily backups of SharePoint site collections, including those created via Groups or Teams. Data can be restored non-destructively to a sub-site, directly in place, or exported for download or to external storage such as AWS S3, MS Azure, or Box.com. You can sign-up for a 15-day free trial at https://app.cloudally.com/sign-up and begin backing up your SharePoint data today.


Now that you know more about how to simplify Communication & organizational collaboration with SharePoint, you might want to have a look at what we created for you…

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Microsoft Cloud Backup: Does Microsoft Backup Office 365 to cloud?

How is it possible to get a full Data Restore and
Recovery for Office 365?

— Office 365 backup and recovery —

As your company’s information technology leader you have been in pursuit of better collaboration and storage capabilities, and have made the move to Microsoft Office 365, and while this is a powerful cloud-based suite of tools, that doesn’t mean your data is secure.  So, does Microsoft Backup Office 365 To Cloud?


What this article is about:


Just because MS solutions are on the cloud, it doesn’t mean the complete Microsoft 365 Solution: Office 365 ExchangeSharePoint, and OneDrive solutions is backed up by Microsoft. You will discover this when you attempt & fail to restore your data from any point in time, without having a backup & restore add-on in place as well. Then, how is it possible to get a full Data Restore and Recovery for Office 365?

Why You Should Backup Office 365 Data

It is your responsibility to protect your corporate data when using the Microsoft cloud. Business best practice guidelines require automated backup and recovery but, unfortunately, many companies don’t take the necessary steps to protect themselves from accidental or malicious data destruction.

1 in 3 companies report losing SaaS data, and of those companies, 64% admit to losing data due to user error.

If you don’t backup your Microsoft cloud data your business could be at risk of massive exposure for the simple reason that Microsoft does not provide the ability to recover data that has been accidentally or maliciously deleted or corrupted. The recycle bin is fine for short-term and item-level recovery, but doesn’t provide the ability to perform a point-in-time recovery of lost or corrupt data. As data storage services, SharePoint and OneDrive are not only prone to sync errors, and accidental or malicious data loss, they’re also at risk from malware and ransomware such as CryptoLocker.

As data storage services, SharePoint and OneDrive are not only prone to sync errors, and accidental or malicious data loss, they’re also at risk from malware and ransomware such as CryptoLocker.

Data Protection and Recovery for the Microsoft Cloud

CloudAlly offers the most reliable and trusted Microsoft Office 365 backup and recovery solution for your IT team. It ensures that all historical versions of your Office 365, How is it possible to get a full Data Restore and Recovery for Office 365?SharePoint, and OneDrive data—including all emails, calendars, contacts, tasks, and sties—are safely stored and easily recoverable. And our Outlook compatible .pst export means that your Office data is still available even if MS Azure is temporarily unavailable. It’s effortless.

 

 

View Our Microsoft Cloud Backup / Office 365 Backup Video below:

For SharePoint & OneDrive Backup Video CLICK HERE

CloudAlly provides accurate data restoration from any point in time and at any hierarchical level. Administrators can perform a non-destructive restore, or export data with a single click, reducing the risk of lost productivity and meeting even the fastest recovery time objectives… Start to backup your Office 365 with a Free 14 day trial.


Now that you know how to backup Microsoft Office 365 to cloud…

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OneDrive Online Backup Video

Microsoft OneDrive is a cloud storage solution that allows you to get access to your files anywhere, on any device. It’s an incredible tool that enables you to share your content and work together with anyone in your work and life. No matter where you are or what you’re doing, OneDrive makes it easy to access and share your files and photos for seamless communication and collaboration in your personal life and business.

There’s just one problem, with endless collaboration opportunities, you open yourself up to potentially sticky situations. For example, what if one of you delete a document and empty the recycle bin, by mistake? That’s where a cloud backup and restore solution is key to your business’ success. OneDrive data can be accidentally or maliciously deleted or corrupted and is vulnerable to ransom-ware attacks.


What this article is about:


Why you need a backup solution

You can’t afford to lose file and documents that are vital to your entire organization without a way to recover it. The good news is that, in just a few minutes, you can set up CloudAlly to protect your OneDrive data with automated daily backups.

CloudAlly’s backup solution is compatible with all business plans. No matter how many employees are in your organization or how much data you create and modify on a daily basis, CloudAlly can protect your company data with a backup solution hosted in secure Amazon S3 storage. And as an added benefit, CloudAlly gives you the ability to keep track of all your OneDrive backup activity. So, you can see exactly what’s going on.

About CloudAlly’s OneDrive Backup Demo Video

In our newest demo video, we show you how easy it is to start protecting Microsoft OneDrive for your company. Activating your CloudAlly backup is simple, safe, and can be completed in just a few easy-to-follow steps. You’ll notice how user-friendly our software is as well as how many options you have for customizing your backup solution.

Let our two-minute activation video take you through the step-by-step process of backing up your OneDrive cloud storage solution, so you can sit back and relax knowing that your data is safe and that you can restore like an expert. We cover everything from:

  • Correctly setting up your OneDrive backup using a user name and password that has global admin rights.
  • Gathering your OneDrive URL, which will be https://tenantname-my.onedrive.com
  • Choosing which sites you’d like to backup, you can activate backups for all sites with a single click, or selectively activate backups as needed.
  • Checking the appropriate backup preferences including “automatically detect and activate new accounts,” scheduling, etc.
  • Picking a friendly name for each backup
  • And, indexing your archived data.

We want to show you how easy it is to protect your data from all threats no matter the problem. Don’t choose software to protect your data that you haven’t seen in action. Watch the MS OneDrive video demo to see how easy to use, secure and reliable CloudAlly’s MS OneDrive. Choose CloudAlly as your OneDrive backup and restore solution, and rest easy knowing that you’ve already seen how it works and you don’t have to worry about hidden processes or errors.

When you’re ready to know more, contact CloudAlly by calling +1.917.338.0385 or filling out our Contact Form. We can’t wait to work with you to keep your OneDrive data safe and sound. And if you’re still concerned about using CloudAlly’s OneDrive backup solution, don’t forget, we have a risk free 15-day trial available!


Now that you know more about OneDrive Online Backup, you might want to have a look at what we created for you…

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The Best Cloud Storage and File-Sharing Services 2017 – Comparison

Google Drive vs Dropbox vs OneDrive

Cloud storage is almost a necessary part of digital life. It allows you to access files from anywhere if you can access your cloud account. No more having to remember to put important files on a flash drive to transport them. There are several different cloud storage companies to choose from. What are the Best Cloud Storage and File Sharing Services? Here in this guide we compare Dropbox, Box, and OneDrive.

Dropbox

When it comes to cloud storage, Dropbox is one of the most popular. For good reason, it was one of the first on the market. While Dropbox doesn’t offer the most space for their free accounts, they do offer a generous paid plan options for affordable monthly or yearly fees.

Security is on the top of everyone’s concern list. All of Dropbox’s plans have 256-bit AES and SSL/TLS encryption. Also, all plans allow for two-factor authentication. The service does offer HIPPA compliance. However, it is not available on free, pro, or standard services.

Dropbox allows you to share files stored on their service with others. To give you more security, you can set permissions such as view only or editing capabilities. You can also choose to password protect files shared and have the sharing links expire after a set time.

For standard and higher plans, you can set granular permissions for other users who may have access to the account. These plans are more for geared for business users instead of the personal user, however.

All Dropbox accounts are equipped with MS Office 365 integration and Dropbox Paper. Shared files can be commented on if permissions are set by the administrator.

Pros:

  • Easy Sharing
  • 256-bit AES Security
  • Expiring Shared Links
  • Two-Factor Authentication
  • Anytime access
  • Generous storage size, paid plans start at 1TB

Cons:

  • Free service is only 2GB
  • Pro plan only has 30-day version history and file recovery
  • Pro and Free plan only have email support
  • HIPPA support is only available for Advanced and Enterprise users

Paid Dropbox plans to start at $9.99 billed monthly or $99.99 billed annually with 1 TB storage. Larger storage sizes are available. While their Advanced and Enterprise service are geared for businesses, they do have a dedicated Dropbox for Business service for corporations.

Box

Box is a huge competitor for Dropbox. Like Dropbox, Box offers anywhere-anytime access to files stored within your cloud account. Box, however, prizes themselves in having tight security for all their accounts no matter which level you choose.

Box understands not all their clients are located in the United States and need differing security options. That is why the company has Processor Global Binding Corporate Rules and Controller Global Binding Corporate Rules in place for their European clientele. For Asia-Pacific users, the company has Assai-Pacific Economic Cooperation Cross-Border Privacy Rules systems and adhere to ISO 27018. Box also adheres to ISO 27001, SOC1, PCI DDS, FedRAMP, and HIPPA regulations. Customers outside the US can enjoy in-region storage in either Europe, Asia, Canada, or Australia. As with Dropbox, those interested in additional security can set up two-factor authentication.

Because the cloud is more than just for storage, Box makes it easy for account owners to share files with others. Files sharing via links or straight from your Box account allows you to get important documents where they need to go, even if they would normally be too big to send via email. With file-sharing, all users can see what changes are made and have access to the latest versions.

For those concerned about downloading large files, most file types are easily opened with Box. Supported types include Word, Excel, AI, ESP, PSD, and PDF. The service also supports photo files and more. With over 120 supported file types, you should not have to download a file or have the program on your system just to view it.

Pros:

  • Generous free service at 10GB
  • Paid services start at $10 for 100GB
  • SSL and at-rest Encryption
  • File versioning
  • Paid plan offers a 5GB file upload limit

Cons:

  • 250 MB file upload limit on free plans
  • Personal plans limited to either 10 or 100 GB

Box makes it easy to keep all your files secure and accessible from anywhere. As with their competitors, they do offer business plans for corporate users. These plans carry the same security but do require a minimum number of users to enroll.

OneDrive

OneDrive is Microsoft’s answer to online storage. As with Box and Dropbox, they offer online, PC, Mac, and mobile access to files from anywhere at any time. Because it’s Microsoft, it works seamlessly with all Office products.

Microsoft cares about security just like Dropbox and Box. While their security is not as sophisticated as Box, it is just as secure as Dropbox. They use 256-bit AES security to control their accounts. The service also provides two-factor authentication for online access.

Users can share files and folders with others. You set limitations on how the files are secured. You can restrict them to read-only or editable with the ability to download to another device. Files edited by other users will show what changes were made by whom.

Files created in OneNote can be backed up directly to OneDrive. Also, other files created by any Windows Store app can also be stored directly to the cloud storage service. From your OneDrive you can post photos to Facebook.

Pros:

  • 256-bit AES Security
  • 5GB Free
  • Additional Free storage available with Automatic Camera Roll Backup
  • Seamless Integration with Office Documents
  • Create Surveys with Excel

Cons:

  • Paid limited to 50GB unless you have Office 365
  • Scanning to upload to OneDrive and Excess sharing requires Office 365

Microsoft OneDrive might not be quite as good as Box. However, for loyal Microsoft users, it is the obvious choice as it easily allows all your services to integrate into one storage location. If you have an Office 365 account, you get additional storage along. Personal users get 1TB storage while Home users have access to up to 5TB. If you want to purchase a 50GB storage service instead of Office 365, it is affordable at only $1.99 per month.

All three have their strengths and weaknesses. No matter which one you choose, it is important to consider having a backup for your cloud service. While all service providers offer redundancy to ensure their servers never lose anything, it doesn’t stop you from accidentally deleting files. CloudAlly offers affordable backup options for all your cloud storage needs.

The Best Cloud Storage and File Sharing Services:

Try our automated FREE 14 day backup – Click Here

Microsoft SharePoint Backup Comparison (2017)

Microsoft SharePoint Backup – 2017 updates

CIO executives and IT managers are facing a tough decision selecting between SharePoint On – Premises, and SharePoint online of Office 365. This is much more apparent since 2013 when we reviewed the choices at hand.

It has been 4 years since we first brought you a comparison between SharePoint On-Premises and Office 365’s SharePoint Online. Since then, Microsoft has updated their SharePoint software with the new release of SharePoint 2016.

While a lot has stayed the same, the subtle changes might make a difference in determining which product best serves your needs.

Here is a basic overview of the primary differences between SharePoint Online and SharePoint On Premises:

Updates to SharePoint On-Premises

If you are familiar with SharePoint 2013, you may have some reservations about using the software on-premises. However, the 2016 release has many updates that make it more user-friendly.

One of the greatest updates that SharePoint 2016 has is the easier patching ability. Previous versions required IT personnel to take the server offline to perform updates. Now, installation of these patches occurs without taking the servers offline. These software updates help fix security holes and bugs.

Other notable updates include:

  • Improved naming system with shorter easier to understand names
  • Increased file size allowance
  • Increased storage number of records
  • Increased list threshold
  • Automatically updated links for relocated files
  • Faster search

SharePoint Backup
One other area Microsoft improved is the ability to use SharePoint 2016 on-site in a hybrid situation. Administrators can connect the on-premises SharePoint with online storage. Searches conducted include results from both online and on-site locations.

ProsCons
  • Full Customization
  • Increased Cost of workforce and equipment
  • Reduced Bandwidth (when not part of hybrid setup)
  • Redundancy required
  • Compliance with local security regulation
  • Scale up/out costs
  • Full Control
  • Additional set up for disaster recovery
  • Migrate when necessary

SharePoint Online

Microsoft is always working to make their Office 365 SharePoint better for their customers, with Cloudally’s Microsoft Sharepoint Backup the online option is extenuated, and adding hybrid compatibility for on-site SharePoint 2016 to work seamlessly is a huge upgrade. Also, it is important to mention that Microsoft has added security framework to make their Online Storage compliant with HIPAA, SSAE, and EU Model clauses to name a few.

ProsCons
  • Reduced workforce/hardware costs
  • Not controlled locally
  • Automatic updates
  • Greater bandwidth use
  • Anywhere access
  • Added storage costs
  • Complaint friendly
  • Limited customization
  • Enterprise grade security
  • Easy scale up/out

As Microsoft stores your files on their Azure servers, they offer automatic redundancies. These redundancies protect your data from loss due to hardware malfunction.

Overall Comparison

Sharepoint 2016 and SharePoint Online, via Office 365, operate the same. Users store documents and share them with their colleagues. Thanks to recent updates on both the onsite 2016 platform and Office 365 both programs can now work seamlessly together.

The following will help you with a better understanding of their differences.

CategoryOn-SiteOnline
CostRequires purchase of hardware and software license plus IT personnel to maintain systemAnnual subscription of Office 365 Plan billed per user
Deployment and MaintenanceIT personnel to deploy and manage farm, patches may be delayed due to workloadMicrosoft controls environment and installs patches when released
Business ContinuityDependent on internal capabilitiesBuilt-in redundancy and failover for data centers.
FeaturesSupport for Enterprise feature, with installation ofOffice web appLimited, preconfigured features
CustomizationFull server side code and client side code support.Full client side support. Limited server side support
SecurityDependent on internal capabilitiesEnterprise grade security
ComplianceDependent on internal capabilitiesEu Model Clauses, US-EU Safe Harbor Framework, HIPAA, FISMA, ISO 27001, FERPA, and SSAE16 compliant
StorageMore expensive storage devices with scalable size, more than 100GBCheaper costs, site collection up to 100GB, maximum content in single tenant Office 365 plan based.

Which Best Serves Your Needs

There are no absolutes when it comes to determining the best fit for your business. Online Sharepoint makes it easy for your employees to access the files they need from anywhere. The greater fluidity allows you to utilize a remote workforce in addition to your in-house personnel.

However, due to security regulations, some information cannot be stored in a cloud setting. That means you must invest in Sharepoint software housed in on-site servers. Local service limits your company’s ability to allow employees to work remotely.

Bottom Line

In most cases, the middle ground might be your best option. By investing in on-site Sharepoint 2016 software, you can house sensitive information locally. Storing sensitive documents on-premises can help you maintain compliance with government regulations.

However, employees can store data that does not contain restricted information in the cloud environment. Workers can then access these non-sensitive documents from anywhere. With Sharepoint 2016 and Office 365 both having hybrid capabilities you can have the best of both worlds.

Disaster Recovery in High Priority

Choosing to go with Microsoft Sharepoint Online backup is placing your disaster recovery in top priority and your recovery protocol in place. An online backup of all your Sharepoint files allows you to recover data lost due to viruses or human error, eliminating data center issues.

Without a 3rd party backup service, such as Cloudally, your company lacks protection against malicious attacks. Ransomware attacks can occur at any time, forcing you to pay a hefty price to recover your information. With a proper backup in place, you can recover compromised files without paying the enormous fees requested by the hackers.

CloudAlly offers continuous support with Microsoft SharePoint backup. Data is saved daily to your online depository. Files deleted from your Office 365 online account remain within your CloudAlly backup until you choose to remove them.

There is no way to know when a ransomware attack or malicious employee error may occur. However, having CloudAlly Sharepoint backup available can protect you. Learn on Microsoft SharePoint and Check out our FREE TRIAL.