Sharing is Caring
Most of us know it, but staying up to date with everything Microsoft Azure related can be hard since it changes a lot over the span of a month. This is great, though, because it drives the innovation and abilities of the cloud and makes it a very dynamic area to work in.
However, this also means it is very important to share these changes, so everyone knows what is new, what is different, what do I need to look out for, etc.
To accomplish this, I found my way back Azure Logic Apps. Let's have a look!
The Logic App
Microsoft has an Azure updates page on which they publish all their new announcements about General available, Preview, In development, Updated and Retiring services. While the Azure updates page is certainly not alone in this, since these pages also exist for Microsoft 365, Learn, etc., one thing they all have in common is an RSS Feed.
This might be older tech, but it works great for for the purpose of a trigger mechanism to share these updates on other platforms!
So let's start by going to the Portal, create a new resource group, or use an existing one, and create a new Logic App and choose the blank canvas option to follow along!
For each Azure Logic App a trigger is needed. While this can be anything from events, time, uploads, and many more things, we will need the RSS connector to listen to the RSS feed from the Microsoft Azure updates page.
Search for RSS and you will find the trigger called When a feed item is published. Click on it and you will need to fill in some required data:
The RSS feed URL: https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/updates/
Chosen property will be used to determine which items are new: PublishDate
How often do you want to check for items? 30 Minute (You can set this to however frequently you want to check and post if available, but more runs do cost more money.)
If you click on Add new parameter, you can selected a Time zone. Since I'm from the Netherlands, I went with UTC+1.
If you've configured your RSS feed trigger, give the the connector a proper name to know what is happening in this step.
Easy! Now you are set to listen to the feed.
Linkedin v2 Connector
To share the RSS feed updates, LinkedIn would be the ideal platform where many of your peers look on a daily basis. Let's get started.
Click on the + below the trigger and choose Add an action and look for LinkedIn v2 and click on the Share an article V2 action.
Setting up a connection with a LinkedIn account is required. For this, I used my personal account. When the connection is set up you will be able to fill in some required data:
Content URL: Click on the field and choose the Primary feed link from the RSS connector. This is the URL to the details of the update.
Visible to guest: Click on the field and choose Yes. This will allow everyone to see your shared article instead of only your connections.
Click on Add new parameter and select Title, Description and Text.
Title: Click on the field and choose the Feed title, which is the name of the update.
Description: Click on the field and choose the Feed Summary which contains a short introduction text to the update.
Text: This field will contain the actual LinkedIn message that you will send besides the shared URL etc. For this I used the Feed Title and placed the appropriate #'s behind it.
Change it how you please, and afterwards your connector is set!
While LinkedIn is my platform of choice, Twitter is also a big platform which allows for Azure Logic App integration. For this reason, I configured it as well.
Click on the + below the trigger and choose Add a parallel branch. This will allow for an Action to be run parallel with the LinkedIn Connector.
Look for Twitter and click on the Post a tweet action.
Make the connection to Twitter and continue.
Click on Add new parameter and select Tweet text.
Tweet text: Here you can add all the information you want to share. Unfortunately, the Twitter connector doesn't have options to place the URL in or to add any other fields. In this case you will have to decide what you want to make of it. I went with the Feed title followed by "Read more: Primary feed link" and the #'s used on Twitter.
Now all the chosen social platforms are up-to-date with the shared Azure updates, but what about internally at the company you work for?
If allowed by policies and rights you can also set up a share to Microsoft Teams. I used this to share in our internal general chat, which notifies everyone (including myself) of any new updates.
Again, click on the + below the trigger and choose Add a parallel branch.
Look for Microsoft teams, you might need to scroll through some third-party connectors and click on the Post message in a chat or channel action.
Connect to Microsoft teams and continue.
Post as: Choose as who you want to post in the your chat/channel. I went with User, so I post as myself.
Post in: Choose the option you like, this could be a bot, group chat or Methode (channels and such). I went with Methode since it contains our general channel.
If you selected Methode as well, you will get a few new fields to fill in, such as:
Team: This contains the organisation you want to post in.
Methode: This is the channel in which you want to post.
Message: Your message to send to the Teams. I used the same text as used in Twitter for some consistency and ease of use.
And after this the connector should be done.
Running the Logic App
When everything is set as you like, it's time to hit the Save button in the top left corner and wait for an RSS Feed update from Azure. Triggering it yourself or giving the RSS connector a Startdate in the past will unfortunately not work. It is a waiting game, but when it gets triggered the following should occur:
I'm in the middle of finalising some very interesting audio fragments, as well as getting ready for the first Dutch MCT Community Event on 30 March 2022 at Microsoft HQ NL!