Sandro Pereira is back in London for Biztalk 360’s Integrate 2018

The primary conference for professionals working in the Microsoft Integration Space is back in London from June 4 to 6, and our MVP Sandro Pereira is one of the guest speakers for the sixth year in a row. Following the last event in Seattle, DevScope joins Integrate once again as a Silver Sponsor.

Sandro will deliver a talk on June 5th at 16h00 titled “BizTalk Server: Lessons from the Road” in which he chronicles his experiences as an external BizTalk Server consultant. Among other topics, Sandro will address BizTalk migration strategy, content-based routing techniques, Mapping, JSON support, BizTalk administration tips, and extending BizTalk out-of-the-box capabilities.

Sandro Pereira delivering his session at Integrate London 2017

In the meantime, you may want to check out Sandro Pereira’s “Biztalk Server Fast & Loud”, delivered at Integrate last year, as well as “A new set of BizTalk Server Tips and Tricks”, from Integrate 2016.

If you haven’t registered for BizTalk Integrate 2018 yet, you can do it here.

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World Password Day 2018 – top 7 password mistakes you should avoid

Today is World Password Day 2018, an annual celebration that fights identity theft on the internet by asking people to pledge to #LayerUp. #LayerUp means securing your data with multi-factor authentication (MFA), i.e. more authentication layers. If you wish to join the movement, visit the Password Day website and take the pledge.

Multi-factor authentication is becoming increasingly available for a multitude of products and services, from gaming platforms to home and mobile banking. By combining your password with an additional form of authentication, you are significantly decreasing the risk of someone hacking your account. Face and fingerprint ID are now commonplace and their use goes well beyond unlocking your smartphone or computer. Whenever possible, use them.

Face and Fingerprint ID on Microsoft Surface Pro
If your laptop supports face and finger ID, make sure you use them.

Today though, we’re celebrating the first and most common layer of protection: passwords. Everybody uses them, but despite being around since well before the dawn of the worldwide web, many still make basic password mistakes that can cost them dearly. These are the 7 most common ones:

#1: Using personal information as your password

Names of pets, relatives, sports teams or year of birth are among the most common passwords. This means they’re among the first words cracking software takes a shot at. With the help of social media, gathering your personal information is easier than ever so avoid using words one can easily extract from one of your public profiles. Random combinations of characters may be hard to remember, but they are also harder to crack.

#2: Using the same password everywhere

Using a single password everywhere may guarantee you never forget it, but it’s also the easiest way for someone to take control of your digital life. All it takes is a successful phishing attack, which according to an Intel Security study published in 2015, 97% of people can’t identify them.

#3: Sharing your password with other people

Despite sounding like an obvious mistake, this is quite common among family and close friends. Avoid sharing passwords in written form even with people you trust. Their passwords might not be as good as yours might and if someone accesses their email or messaging account, your login and password can be there.

#4: Only slightly changing your password when asked to do it

Someone attempted to access your PayPal account and you have to set a new password. Thinking of simply adding a “1” at the end? Don’t. Password-guessing programs have been able to circumvent this for some time now so you’ll most likely end up getting another email asking you to change it again. A recurring mistake is adding “!” or “?” at the end of your current password, something – you guessed it – most crackers are aware of. Use punctuation between characters, but not at the end of your password.

#5: Using patterns

“1qaz2wsx” looks like a random, hard to crack password, right? Now try looking at your keyboard. It may look clever at first glance, but according to SplashData, this was one of the worst common passwords of 2015. It’s a pattern, i.e. the opposite of random, i.e. easily detectable by password cracking programs.

QWERTY bad password
For some reason, people insist on using QWERTY as their password.
#6: Using short passwords

The longer a password, the harder it is for brute-force attacks to crack it. If you still use 5 or 6 character passwords, update them to a 12 character minimum.

#7: Storing your passwords in a document

Having a spreadsheet or text file with a list of your usernames and passwords may sound convenient, but it’s a very dangerous convenience. Ransomware attacks exploded last year and even a not so well-intentioned technician can access that file next time your PC is in the shop for repairs.

So, what should you do?

If you wish to test your password’s strength, is a good place to start. Run by Troy Hunt, Microsoft Regional Director and Developer Security MVP, the website stores over half a billion passwords previously exposed in data breaches. We strongly advise you to give it a go. While you’re there, you should also test your email address and find out which attacks it was involved in, as well as the data compromised in those attacks. It goes without saying you should change your password on those websites if you haven’t already.

Nevertheless, a strong password is still ground zero when it comes to protecting yourself on the internet. Whenever possible, use multi-factor authentication. Most services you use have two-step verification processes in place, although it might not be the default setting. Enable it and #LayerUp.

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Check out Rui Romano’s “Power BI Tips & Tricks from the trenches”

Rui Romano, DevScope’s Business Intelligence Manager and Microsoft Data Platform MVP, was in Dublin for the Data & BI Summit where he delivered a session titled “Power BI Tips & Tricks from the trenches”. This session made the rounds on social media, and we decided to share it with our blog’s audience as well.

Just click the image below to find Rui Romano’s presentation on Linkedin’s SlideShare:Rui Romano's Power BI Tips & Tricks from the trenches

The Data & BI Summit is hosted by The Power BI User group (PUG), a 38.000 members strong organization of Microsoft Power BI users.

In celebration of the Data & BI Summit, we created a special voucher for 15% off any DevScope product purchase. Simply introduce the following voucher at the checkout:


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An OpenML hackathon took place in Porto, and we were there

Earlier this month, DevScope was one of several sponsors of a weeklong series of hands-on workshops titled “Introduction to Machine Learning: Sunset Workshops” which took place at the Porto Business School.
Introduction to Machine Learning at Porto Business School

All sessions happened after working hours and featured some renowned Machine Learning specialists from all over Europe.

Among the many projects the OpenML community took on during the hackathon, DevScope’s main contribution was towards the creation of a Docker version of OpenML so even more people can easily take part in the project. We also started a brainstorm session regarding the use of OpenML in the Machine Learning workplace context.

OpenML & OpenML concepts for projects & teams

About the OpenML program

The Open Machine Learning project is an inclusive program looking to build an open, organized, online ecosystem for Machine Learning.


The OpenML community has over 4.700 members spread around the globe and is always looking for new members. If you’re interested in Machine Learning and wish to contribute to arguably one of the most fascinating areas of computer science, join the OpenML movement.


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Introducing Clippy for Power BI

The add-in that brings back everyone’s favorite virtual assistant!

First introduced in Office 1997, Clippy was the much beloved Microsoft® Office virtual assistant that helped beginner and advanced users complete tasks in Word or Excel. Decades before voice assistants dominated phones and living rooms, Clippy was the undisputed world’s most popular virtual aide and a true pop culture phenomenon.

To the dismay of many, Clippy left us too soon. It may no longer help Office users, but the love for Clippy is still widely expressed to this day, from fan art to 3D-printed models or even your everyday socks.

People miss Clippy. Dearly.

At DevScope, we share the same love for the old Office Assistant but can Clippy even find a place in the high-tech world of Cortana and Alexa?

We dare to say yes, and we’ve found just the right home for Clippy: Microsoft® Power BI™.

We’re not alone:


Power BI™ is an amazing tool but can be a little intimidating to new users. After much debate, we decided that Clippy was perfect to teach new and advanced users the ins and outs of Power BI and started working on an add-in that will bring it back to help everyone.

Check out some of Clippy’s helpful tips we’re working on:

Clippy for Power BI
Having trouble creating a new table? Clippy can help you!
Clippy can help you add data to Power BI
Want to add data to Power BI? Clippy to the rescue!
Clippy can help make you hide bad results
Clippy can even help make you hide bad results!

Clippy for Power BI™ Desktop will be available for download for free on AppSource on April 31st.

UPDATE: Clippy for Power BI was our April Fools joke, but the feedback has been so positive that we might just do it if demand is high enough. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Linkedin, and let us know how badly you want Clippy back.

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SQL Saturday is back in town!

October 28th is SQL Saturday day and once again Porto will host one of the most important meetings for users of this platform and for all of those who wish to know more about SQLServer’s ecosystem.

Pre-Conference – October 27th (Friday)

Pedro Sousa and Rui Quintino will carry out an awesome workshop on “Data Science with Azure Machine Learning Workbench & Docker Containers for Data Platform” and you are more than welcome to join them. To register for the training go to Weventual.

Rui Quintino Lead Data Researcher at DevScope. Rui works with Microsoft data related technologies since 1998 and currently leads Data Research team at DevScope building and improving products powered by Data, Machine Learning, Deep Learning & Artificial Intelligence. Beyond data technologies, Rui also has past background in web, mobile  & security and he likes to mix all of these to get the most out of Microsoft’s Data Platform and make the world a better place through the use of data.

Pedro Sousa lives in Porto, Portugal and he currently works as a Systems Engineer at DevScope. Started working with SQL Server at version 6.5 and although DBA is not his primary role, always had a particular interest in it. Nowadays one of his main focus is Microsoft Azure and integration with on-premises networks, working from the copper wire to the Cloud.

Conference – October 28th

We will be attending many other sessions, and also leading some other. Please join Rui Romano, Joana Barbosa, and Pedro Sousa at their respective lectures (Full Schedule)

See you there!

Join us at Integrate 2017 USA

INTEGRATE 2017 is the premier integration conference for anyone who is working in Microsoft Integration space. If you missed the chance to attend the London event this year – which also had our own Sandro Pereira as a speaker, for the fifth consecutive time – join us at INTEGRATE 2017 USA at the Microsoft Redmond Campus. This event has Scott Guthrie, Executive Vice President for the Cloud and Enterprise division at Microsoft as the keynote speaker and it will be a great opportunity for you to interact with the Microsoft Product groups and employees alongside with Microsoft Integration MVPs.

And this year for the first time, the USA Edition will count with the presence of Sandro has a speaker. His talk, “BizTalk Server Fast and Loud”, will address a hardcore BizTalk topic that will address the following question: How can you optimize/tuning your BizTalk environment for performance. Optimizing your BizTalk Server installation is not an easy thing to do because it affects several layers and skills. This topic is very well documented by the product group but the problem is that it is very extensive and complex. Sandro presentation will aim to guide you through the most important steps, operations or task you need to do in order to boost the performance of BizTalk that you can adjust or follow according to your needs because, depending on your infrastructure, this can be a straightforward operation or a very extensive and hard operation.


This is a 3-day event covering technologies like On-premise, Cloud and Hybrid Integration, with 29 speakers from Microsoft and the Integration community & key sessions from the Microsoft Product Group. The complete technology stack for this year’s INTEGRATE event includes Integration Architecture, BizTalk Server, Host Integration Server (IBM Connectivity), Logic Apps, API Management, Azure Service Bus, Event Hubs & Event Grid, Azure IoT, Azure Functions, Azure Gateway (Hybrid), Microsoft Flow, and Microsoft Power Apps.

For all the reasons described above, and because Integration is a core part of our business, DevScope decided to sponsor this amazing event that will happen on the Microsoft Redmond Campus.

Have a look at the full agenda here:

Join us to foster water innovation!

Porto Water Innovation Week 2017 will take place from 24 to 30 September – in the Alfândega Porto Congress Centre. Our own Catarina Ricca will carry out a tech talk about “PBI ScoreCards – A new way of looking at business management indicators“. It will be the first tech talk of more than 35 at the  EIP WATER CONFERENCE 2017 event.  So “Join us to foster water innovation!“.

Here you can find the Tech Talk’s full program:

You can also visit us in the exhibition area, at booth nr.7 and learn more about our PBI ScoreCards solution and the success story at Águas do Porto. Be our guest and learn more about how we can help you increase successfully your business with PBI ScoreCards.


PBI ScoreCards – On track with your strategy

PBI ScoreCards is a platform that enables companies to easily setup scorecards and KPI’s, generating dynamic performance reports using Power BI.

Our platform was conceived to help your organization to automate the generation and filling process without overcoming the basic rules of strategic planning and management.

For more information visit our site:


Integrate 2017 Conference – The world’s Best Microsoft Integration event right now.


Our own Sandro Pereira is a guest speaker in the event Integrate 2017, the premier Microsoft Integration Conference for who is working in Microsoft Integration space.

This 3-day event, taking place in London, is going to covering technologies like On-premise, Cloud and Hybrid Integration, with the contribution of  29 speakers from Microsoft and the Integration community & key sessions from the Microsoft Product Group.

Have a look on the agenda here:

Our own Sandro Pereira session “BizTalk Server Fast and Loud” it will take place tomorrow morning, June 28th at 11h40m,  and he is going to address the following question: How can I optimize/tuning my BizTalk environment for performance. Optimizing your BizTalk Server installation is not an easy thing to do because it affects several layers and skills. This topic is very well documented by the product group but the problem is that it is very extensive and complex. This presentation will aim to guide you through the most important steps, operations or task you need to do in order to boost the performance of BizTalk that you can adjust or follow according to your needs because, depending on your infrastructure, this can be a straightforward operation or a very extensive and hard operation. But I will try to keep it as simple as possible so everyone can understand and follow.

Videos from 2017 edition coming soon.  For now, you can watch Integrate 2016 videos here:



Ativar Portugal Startups


The mindset behind “Ativar Portugal” is to support entrepreneurs and the startup ecosystem in Portugal by developing a strong community of innovators, government, venture capitalists and accelerators. And in it’s third edition, this years’ Ativar Portugal event is all about taking the ecosystem to the next level – focused on deep tech.

Ativar Portugal is the biggest Microsoft event in Portugal dedicated to innovation and entrepreneurship.

DevScope is happy to have been invited to join this year’s gathering event, represented by José António Silva who will carry out the Deep Tech keynote.
Here you will find disruptive discussion panels, successful case studies, and innovative sessions, all of them focused on deep tech.
If you want to know more about what will happen during the day, check out the agenda and featured speakers here! The morning event sessions are by invitation only but you can watch them on live streaming here.
The goal is to inspire and get inspired by showcasing incredible and the most innovative things that are being done at the moment and how they are changing the world!
See you there!