Outlook Productivity – Step 2

Once you’ve disabled automatic notifications, you need to establish a methodology for managing emails.

I use my Inbox as a to do list, so I categorize everything into folders, leaving me only the essential emails to deal with.

I also create tasks, and block out my calendar to perform particular tasks.

The easiest way I’ve found to do this is to drag and drop an email to the 3 icons in the bottom left of Outlook.

These ones:


By dragging an email to the appropriate icon, you are immediately asked to create a calendar event, contact or task respectively, linked nicely to the email it relates to.

This allows you to keep up to date on all your emails, and actions using Outlook.

As it sync’s nicely to my mobile with the Outlook App, I always know exactly what I need to be working on, and also ensure I always have time to work on what I need to work on.

Blocking out time to perform tasks ensures you don’t end up in meetings all day long and can actually perform the job you were hired to do!


Outlook Productivity – Step 1

The easiest way to improve your productivity is to disable the interruptions that Outlook presents. Each time you’re distracted you loose roughly 20 minutes of your day re-focusing.

Either shut it down and only open it periodically (3 times a day I suggest).

To disable notifications, click on File, than Options, and set them up as shown below:


Solution: dnx451, unable to copy files

When attempting to copy files for a new MVC solution I’ve experienced the problem below where the dnx451 process is locking the location with the error:

“The action cannot be completed because the folder or a file in it is open in another program”



To resolve this I restarted the IIS process by modifying the web.config file.

Add a space or something…



Solution: Unable to retrieve topology component health states. This may be because the admin component is not up and running.

While setting up a new SharePoint 2013 SP1 farm on Windows Server 2012 I ran into a problem where search wasn’t working correctly.

The error being displayed in the search admin screen was:

“Unable to retrieve topology component health states. This may be because the admin component is not up and running.”

I did extensive searches and eventually tracked down a comment by “sheep” on this blog:


It turns out I just needed to install .net 3.5.

Installation was interesting but I found the solution here:


Thanks internet for solving my problem!




App Launcher Refresh

Microsoft have recently rolled out a refreshed App Launcher for Office 365.

If you’re unsure what that is, it’s the menu system in the top right that looks like this:


This has a number of small usability benefits which ensure Office 365.

Moving your mouse over a tile and clicking the 3 dots brings up some options:


This let’s you customize your navigation by changing the size of tiles, and how they behave, for example here resized some tiles, and made the people tile wider.


This is useful, however being able to pin tiles to the nav bar will save many clicks and making the Office 365 experience that much better.

Here i’ve pinned SharePoint Online and Admin:

Remember if you unpin a tile you can always click on View all my apps to repin it to the App Launcher.


Finally, you can add your own tiles to the app launcher.

Here is a step by step guide on how to do that:


If you’d like more information here is Microsoft’s blog post on this topic:


I hope you find these changes useful. I know I will.

How to allow large files to be uploaded into Sharepoint

To upload large files to Sharepoint 2007, running on Windows Server 2008, do the following:

(These increase the file size limit to 100MB and timeouts to 10minutes.)

In the central administration screens do the following:

1. Get into the SharePoint Central Administration Site

2. Select “Application Management”

3. Under the “SharePoint Web Application Management” section select “Web Application General Settings”

4. Change the “Maximum Upload Size” to 100MB.

In IIS of the web front end server websites:

1. Go to the website, click advanced settings, then the connection limits expansion

2. Set Connection Timeout to 600.

In Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\Web server extensions\12\TEMPLATE\LAYOUTS
Adjust the upload.aspx setting to read:

<location path=”upload.aspx”>
<httpRuntime executionTimeout=”999999″ maxRequestLength=”2097151″ />

Adjust the virtual directory web.config to read:

<httpRuntime executionTimeout=”999999″ maxRequestLength=”51200″ />


Add this section in system.webserver

<requestLimits maxAllowedContentLength="104857600"/>

Solution: Revocation information for the security certificate for this site is not available

Recently users where getting this error message:

“Revocation information for the security certificate for this site is not available. Do you wish to proceed?”

when they accessed a website.

After investigation it turned out that the certificate revocation list distribution point, which is found (in IE anyway), under:

Page properties, certificates button, look on the details tab for CRL distribution point.

Was no longer accessible, due to some interesting firewalls that had been put in place. On opening access to this appropriately, the message no longer appeared, as the revocation information was then available.

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