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New updates to Cloud App Discovery
Published Sep 06 2018 07:57 PM 530 Views
First published on CloudBlogs on Feb, 16 2015

Howdy folks,

It's been a while since I provided an update on Cloud App Discovery. There's just been a ton of other news to cover so I've been a bit neglectful.

Cloud App discovery is our fastest growing feature in terms of customer adoption and is now the third most actively used feature of Azure AD. The team working on Cloud App Discovery has been very actively engaged with customers, gathering feedback and improving the offering based on what they've learned. They've recently added a bunch of new capabilities that I hope you'll find useful:

  1. Enhanced privacy controls
  2. Notifications
  3. Deployment tracking
  4. New data views

I've asked Girish Chander the Principal Lead PM for Cloud App Discovery to walk you through the new features in Cloud App Discovery. You'll find his blog post below.

So if you haven't taken a look at Cloud App discover recently, I'd encourage you to check it out. You can dign up for Cloud app discovery and provide feedback using this forum or engage the team directly here .

As always, we'd love to receive any feedback or suggestions you have.


Alex Simons (Twitter: @Alex_A_Simons )

Director of PM

Active Directory Team


Hi everyone,

I'm excited to introduce a set of new updates we've made to Cloud App Discover over the recent weeks based on the enthusiastic feedback we continue to receive. We love hearing from you, so please continue to provide feedback !

Here's what's new:

  1. Enhanced Privacy controls: Select which apps you want to collect data on <not just categories>
  2. Notifications: Receive notifications to call attention to the important things to focus on
  3. Better deployment tracking: Track your deployment progress and see how many agents are actually feeding data into the service.
  4. New data views: See machine names and usage percentages on each application, relative to all the applications discovered.

Below is a detailed walk-through of these new capabilities.

Enhanced Privacy controls

Until now, you could only select which categories of applications you want to collect data on. We've listened to your feedback that you want more granular controls on privacy to allow you to select which applications you want to track using Cloud App Discovery. With this feature you can now be identify specific applications you want to collect data on. On the portal, click on 'Data Collection' under the settings gear

On the 'Data Collection' page below, you will notice that by default Cloud App Discovery will only collects data from applications that are in our application database. If you want the agent to collect information for all traffic to all apps, then you will need to enable that option explicitly by selecting the "All apps" option.

Select 'Manage list' to specify which applications you want to enable for data collection.

You can view all your enabled apps, select a category, and search for an app to add to your collection list. Cloud App Discovery will ONLY collect data on the apps in your collection list with the "apps in database" selection. After you've made ANY changes select 'apply' and voila! You're all set!

Please note: Changes made to your collection list may take up to 15 minutes to get into effect.

Notifications: Focus on what's important

We hear from a number of you that you would like to be able to easily detect changes in your organization's data and to be notified on specific items to look for and take action on. Cloud App Discovery now offers notifications on cloud application usage and operational service events. All notifications are accessible for you to view directly on the dashboard. This means you can get notified on:
  1. New applications discovered
  2. Agents that need to be updated
  3. Operational service events
  4. Changes in your 'top apps' discovered
  5. The number of agents Cloud App Discovery is collecting data on
To view your notifications select the notification icon. Cloud App Discovery will display a number next to the icon if a new notification requires your attention.

Select Notification Center, which consolidates all your notifications to a single manageable view. From here you can view suggestion action, sort by notification type, and dismiss notifications.

As a next step, we'll make notifications available through email. This means you can check updates without even opening Cloud App Discovery.

Deployment tracking

As many of you deploy agents broadly in your organization, one piece of feedback we get consistently is for you to know how many agents are successfully deployed and actually sending data to the service. To help you with that, you can now see the number of agents that are sending data to the service in the main dashboard view itself.

New data views: App Page Redesign and Machine information We've completely redesigned the app page so you get more insights into the data you need, even faster. You can now view the total number of users, web requests, and data volume and compare this data across all your discovered apps. For example, Office 365 Exchange Online accounts for 50% of my users, 66% of my web requests, and 44% of data volume in the past 7 days across all my discovered apps. This data allows you to quickly understand the relative popularity of a certain application within your organization across a variety of dimensions.

One of piece of feedback we kept hearing was for you to understand which machines were used in accessing certain applications. This redesigned application page now gives you data on which user and machine accessed an app. Under the users table we've added a new field 'Machine name' which is the machine the user was on when accessing the application. Sometimes it can be hard to find just what you're looking for when you have lots of discovered users, so we've also added a search bar. User name can be either a user or service account. For example, if a user installed the Dropbox client application, we've noticed that the service account may access Dropbox directly to update or sync files. In this case, the service account will be listed under the user name field.

Tell us what you think! Go on, give these new features a try. Go to Cloud App Discovery and sign up….it's free while we're in preview! We greatly appreciate your input, please don't hesitate to let us know if you have any questions or additional feedback. We're here to help! If you have any suggestions, questions, or comments, please use this forum . Discover away! Girish Chander.
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