Category Archives: Azure Function

Speaking at Scottish Summit 2021!

I’m very much looking forward to speaking this Saturday 27th of February at the Virtual Scottish Summit 2021! This amazing Community conference will host 365 (!) virtual sessions from experts all over the world, ranging from first-time speakers to experienced community leaders.

Sessions will be delivered in a range of tracks covering Microsoft technologies and community topics, something to choose from for everyone.

My session will be about why it so important to have Zero Trust Admins with least privilege access, and why you start using Azure AD PIM (Privileged Identity Management) today!

I learned about the stereotype of cheap Scots from reading about Scrooge McDuck, I’ve no idea if this is true or not, probably not ;), but the thing that is true is that you should be really cheap when handing out admin privileges.

Today Microsoft 365 Global Administrators or Azure Subscription Owners are the new Domain/Enterprise Admins, in many organizations too many users have these roles. In the session I will show how by implementing just-in-time and just-enough-access (JIT/JEA) policies, we can reduce vulnerability and attack surface, and the right tool for the job is using Azure AD Privileged Identity Management (PIM).

I have been using AAD PIM for years, and in this session I will share my best practices and how to implement and use the right way.

Session details:

There is still time to register, but time and available tickets are running out fast. Go an register your free ticket for an awesome day of free community contents here:

Scottish Summit 2021 | Scottish Summit

Have a great conference and hope you visit my session if the topic is of your interest!

Speaking at Nordic Virtual Summit 2021!

I’m excited to announce that I’m speaking at the inaugural Nordic Virtual Summit 2021, from 10th to 11th February. Nordic Virtual Summit is a Microsoft IT Pro Community Event, organized by the people behind #SGUCSE #SCUGDK #SCUGFI #MMUGNO and #MSEndpointMgr communities!

Sessions will be delivered in 3 tracks:

  • Endpoint Management
  • Security & Compliance
  • Azure & Automation

Each day will start with a pre-conference talk, and then the sessions kick off each hour mark, 3 sessions before lunch and 3 after. There will be 15 minutes break and Q/A between sessions, so you can catch your breath, fill up your coffee or just wait in excitement for the next session 🙂

My session will be about while Azure Serverless Automation solutions like Azure Functions & Logic Apps can be great for your automation scenarios, how can you secure access to sending requests and protect your serverless automation using Azure AD authentication and authorization.

Session details:

I’m hearing the number of registered attendees is now closing in on 2000, so make sure you register and secure your FREE ticket today:

Register – Nordic Virtual Summit

Hope to see you there!

Speaking at Global Automation Bootcamp 2021

I’m happy to announce that I’m part of the amazing global initiative of automation bootcamps in starting from February 5th to 20th 2021!

Update: The Azure Automation track has now been pushed back one week from February 20th to February 27th.

I will speak about how Azure Serverless Automation solutions like Azure Functions, Logic Apps and more can be protected by Azure AD and how Power Platform can securely send requests to trigger your automation scenarios. Session details:

You can register for FREE here at this link: Global Automation Bootcamp 2021 – Power Community

The agenda is very exciting with top speakers, and sessions will be delivered according to the following tracks and days:

  • Automation Summit Day 1, Fri 5th February
  • Power Automate Saturday Bootcamp, Sat 6th February
  • Power Automate Bootcamp Day 2, Sun 7th February
  • RPA & UI Test Automation Bootcamp, Sat 13th February
  • Azure Automation Bootcamp, Sat 27th February
  • Powershell Saturday Bootcamp, Sat 20th February

You can sign up anytime, hope to see you at my session and catch any of the other great sessions 🙂

Using Azure AD Managed Service Identity to Access Microsoft Graph with Azure Functions and PowerShell

Recently Microsoft released an exciting new preview in Azure AD: Managed Service Identity! You can go and read the details at the Enterprise Mobility + Security blog, and some examples of usage scenarios:

Managed Service Identity makes it possible to keep credentials out of code, and that is a very inviting prospect. As I have been exploring Microsoft Graph in different scenarios using PowerShell, I thought I should have a go at using Managed Service Identity in an Azure Function and run some PowerShell commands to get data from the Microsoft Graph. Lets get started!

Configuring the Azure Function

First, if you haven’t already created an existing Azure Function App, go ahead and do that. Here is my Function App I will use in this demo:


Next, open the Function App and go to Platform features, and then click on Managed service identity:


Under Managed service identity, select to Register with Azure Active Directory:


After saving you should get a successful notification that the managed service identity has been registered.


Let’s check what has happened in Azure AD, to that I will use the AzureAD PowerShell CmdLets. After connecting to my Azure AD tenant, I will try to get the Service Principal:


And get some properties of that object:


We can see that the Service Principal object is connected to the Azure Function App and of type ServiceAccount.


Now, we are ready for the next step, which is to create a function that will get data from Microsoft Graph. But first we will need to give this Service Principal some permissions.

Permissions and Roles for the Managed Service Identity

Depending of what you want to do with your Function App, the managed service identity, represented by the service principal, will need some permissions to access resources. You could give the service principal rights to Azure resources like Virtual Machines, or to access Key Vault secrets (a nice blog post on that here:

In my scenario I want to access the Microsoft Graph, and specifically get some Directory data like user information from my Azure AD. When accessing Microsoft Graph you would normally register an Azure AD Application and set up Application or Delegated Permissions, and follow the authentication flow for that. But in this case I want the Service Principal to be able to directly access Directory Data, so I will have to give my Service Principal permission to do that.

The following Azure AD commands adds my service principal to the AD Directory Role “Directory Readers”:

image When listing membership in that role I can see my Service Principal has been added:


Creating a PowerShell Function for the Managed Service Identity

In your Function App, you can now create a new Function, selecting language PowerShell, and in this case I will create it as a HttpTrigger Function:


If you have been following the flow of the blog post until now, we can now check if the Function App is ready for using the Managed Service Identity (MSI). Two environment variables will be created, and you can check if they exist by going to Platform features, and then selecting Advanced tools (Kudo). Under environment you would se something like this if everything is ready (it could take a little time, so re-check until its there):


These two environment variables will be needed in the Azure Function, so we will start by getting that:


If I run the Function I can see from the output that I was able to retrieve the environment variables:


Next I will specify some URI and parameters for my authentication request using the managed service identity. I will need to specify the version (currently 2017-09-01 as specified in the documentation), and since I want to get data from the Microsoft Graph, I will need to specify that as the resource URI. I then build the URI for getting the authentication token:


With that, I can now do an authentication request, which if successful will return an access token I can use as a Bearer token in later queries agains the Microsoft Graph:


Let’s do another test run and verify that I can get an Access Token:


Querying the Microsoft Graph

With a valid Access Token, and with the correct permissions for the resources I will want to access, I can now run some Microsoft Graph API queries.

In my example I have some test users in my tenant named after the popular Seinfeld show. In fact I have set a “Seinfeld” department attribute value on those. So my query for getting those users would be:$filter=Department eq ‘Seinfeld’

A great way to test Microsoft Graph Commands is to use the Graph Explorer,, and if you sign in to your own tenant you can query your own data. As an example, I have showed that here:


In my Azure Function I can define the same query like this (PS! note the escape character before the $filter for it to work):


And with that I can request the user list using Microsoft Graph and a Authorization Header consisting of the Access Token as a Bearer:


Let’s output some data from that response:


And there it is! I’m able to successfully query the Microsoft Graph using Managed Service Identity in an Azure Function, without handling any credentials.

For reference, I have attached both the Azure AD PowerShell  commands, and the Function PowerShell commands below from my Gist. Enjoy!

Azure AD PowerShell SPN commands:

# Log in to Azure AD with Global Admin
# Get the Service Principal for the Function App
$faSpn = Get-AzureADServicePrincipal SearchString "faElvenGraph"
# Get some properties for the Service Principal
$faSpn | Select-Object ObjectId, ObjectType, AlternativeNames,
AppId, DisplayName, ServicePrincipalType
# Get a Directory Role
$role = Get-AzureADDirectoryRole | Where-Object {$_.DisplayName -eq "Directory Readers" }
# Add the Service Principal to the Directory Role
Add-AzureADDirectoryRoleMember ObjectId $role.ObjectId RefObjectId $faSpn.ObjectId
# List Members in the Role
Get-AzureADDirectoryRoleMember ObjectId $role.ObjectId
# If you want to remove from the Role, uncomment and use the following
#Remove-AzureADDirectoryRoleMember -ObjectId $role.ObjectId -MemberId $faSpn.ObjectId

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Azure Function PowerShell Trigger:

# Get Managed Service Identity info from Azure Functions Application Settings
$msiEndpoint = $env:MSI_ENDPOINT
$msiSecret = $env:MSI_SECRET
Write-Output $msiEndpoint
Write-Output $msiSecret
# Specify URI and Token AuthN Request Parameters
$apiVersion = "2017-09-01"
$resourceURI = ""
$tokenAuthURI = $msiEndpoint + "?resource=$resourceURI&api-version=$apiVersion"
# Authenticate with MSI and get Token
$tokenResponse = Invoke-RestMethod Method Get Headers @{"Secret"="$msiSecret"} Uri $tokenAuthURI
# This response should give us a Bearer Token for later use in Graph API calls
$accessToken = $tokenResponse.access_token
Write-Output "Access Token"
Write-Output $accessToken
# $tokenResponse | Get-member
# All Users from a Department
$userlisttURI = "`$filter=Department eq 'Seinfeld'"
# Get the User objects via an authenticated request to Graph API with the help of Bearer Token in authorization header
$graphResponseUsers = Invoke-RestMethod Method Get Uri $userlisttURI Headers @{"Authorization"="Bearer $accessToken"}
# Loop through PowerShell object returned from Graph query
foreach ($user in $graphResponseUsers.value)
Write-Output $user.DisplayName