Tag Archives: Outlook

Set the timezone used for the events in Outlook and Microsoft Graph REST APIs

When you’ve been working for a while like me, you know that when a developer has to work with dates, he faces problems with timezones.

Outlook REST API allows you to get the events for a user by calling the following URL :

GET https://outlook.office365.com/api/v2.0/Me/Events

In the version 2.0 of the API and as you can see in the JSON response below for an event (the response shown here was truncated for brevity), the Start and End items contain two distinct properties for the date and timezone.

By default, all dates and times returned by the server are based on the UTC timezone.

{
  Attendees = (),
  Body = { ... },
  BodyPreview = "...",
  Categories = (),
  ChangeKey = "...",
  CreatedDateTime = "2015-12-02T16:21:57.91403Z";
  End = {
    DateTime = "2012-02-09T19:00:00.0000000",
    TimeZone = "UTC"
  },
  HasAttachments = false,
  Id = "...",
  Importance = "Normal",
  IsAllDay = false,
  IsCancelled = false,
  IsOrganizer = true,
  IsReminderOn = false,
  LastModifiedDateTime = "2015-12-02T16:21:58.7734204Z";
  Location = { ... },
  Organizer = { ... },
  OriginalEndTimeZone = "Pacific Standard Time",
  OriginalStartTimeZone = "Pacific Standard Time",
  Recurrence = { ... },
  ReminderMinutesBeforeStart = 0,
  ResponseRequested = true,
  ResponseStatus = { ... },
  Sensitivity = "Normal",
  SeriesMasterId = <null>,
  ShowAs = "Tentative",
  Start = {
    DateTime = "2012-02-09T18:00:00.0000000",
    TimeZone = "UTC"
  },
  Subject = "...",
  Type = "SeriesMaster"
  WebLink = "...",
  iCalUId = "..."
}

It’s now easier to know what timezone is used for the dates and times. But that’s not all.

If you want the server automatically convert the dates and times of the events into a different timezone, you are able to do so and it’s very easy.

You just have to specify a HTTP header like in the example below to change the timezone. The server will then use this new parameter to return the dates and times in the desired timezone.

Prefer: outlook.timezone="Central Standard Time"

Specifying this HTTP header and calling the previously mentioned URL, you will retrieve a new JSON response like this one :

{
  Attendees = (),
  Body = { ... },
  BodyPreview = "...",
  Categories = (),
  ChangeKey = "...",
  CreatedDateTime = "2015-12-02T16:21:57.91403Z";
  End = {
    DateTime = "2012-02-09T13:00:00.0000000",
    TimeZone = "Central Standard Time"
  },
  HasAttachments = false,
  Id = "...",
  Importance = "Normal",
  IsAllDay = false,
  IsCancelled = false,
  IsOrganizer = true,
  IsReminderOn = false,
  LastModifiedDateTime = "2015-12-02T16:21:58.7734204Z";
  Location = { ... },
  Organizer = { ... },
  OriginalEndTimeZone = "Pacific Standard Time",
  OriginalStartTimeZone = "Pacific Standard Time",
  Recurrence = { ... },
  ReminderMinutesBeforeStart = 0,
  ResponseRequested = true,
  ResponseStatus = { ... },
  Sensitivity = "Normal",
  SeriesMasterId = <null>,
  ShowAs = "Tentative",
  Start = {
    DateTime = "2012-02-09T12:00:00.0000000",
    TimeZone = "Central Standard Time"
  },
  Subject = "...",
  Type = "SeriesMaster"
  WebLink = "...",
  iCalUId = "..."
}

If you want more information about the names of supported timezones, you can find a list on the official documentation on MSDN.

It’s also good to know that even if it’s not mentioned (for now) on the official documentation, this HTTP header also works with Microsoft Graph.

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Be careful to case sensitivity in Microsoft Graph REST API

Last week during Connect(); // 2015, Microsoft announced the general availability (GA) of Microsoft Graph (formerly known as Unified API).

In association with the announcement, a brand new website with a full documentation that explains what’s Microsoft Graph and how to use the REST API was launched here : http://graph.microsoft.io/docs

Since few days, I’m working with Microsoft Graph and I found few issues. Today, I want to talk about one of them which is common with a lot of APIs but frustrating when you encounter it.

During my investigations, I was trying to send a mail and by refering the documentation, it’s noted that you just have to send a JSON message like this one…

["message": {
  body = {
    content = "This message was sent with Microsoft Graph",
    contentType = "text"
  },
  importance = "high",
  subject = "Microsoft Graph REST API",
  toRecipients = ({
    emailAddress = {
      address = "john@doe.com",
      name = "John Doe"
    }
  })
},
"saveToSentItems": false]

… to the following URL.

https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/me/microsoft.graph.sendMail

Very easy in theory but when I execute the request with these values, I receive the following error message.

One or more parameters of the operation 'SendMail' are missing from the request payload. The missing parameters are: Message.

To understand what’s the problem, I looked at the metadata generated for the REST API (based on OData 4.0) by accessing the following URL.

https://graph.microsoft.com/v1.0/$metadata

In the metadata returned by the server, you can see this.

<Action Name="sendMail" IsBound="true" EntitySetPath="bindingParameter">
<Parameter Name="bindingParameter" Type="microsoft.graph.user" />
<Parameter Name="Message" Type="microsoft.graph.message" Nullable="false" />
<Parameter Name="SaveToSentItems" Type="Edm.Boolean" />
</Action>

As you can see, the parameters used by this method are named “Message” and “SaveToSendItems” (in PascalCase) and not “message” and “saveToSendItems” (in lowerCamelCase) as written in the documentation.

When you pay attention to metadata generated by OData, you will see that some methods, especially those existing in other parts of Office 365 REST APIs (e.g. sendMail is used in Outlook REST API), still use PascalCase for their parameter names.

So if you follow the documentation to implement Microsoft Graph but you receive an error message indicating that a parameter is missing, take a look at metadata generated by OData to validate that the method is not expected to use PascalCase instead of lowerCamelCase for its parameters.

An SSL error has occurred when trying to use the Outlook REST API on iOS 9 or OSX 10.11 (El Capitan)

In a previous article, we talked about an issue when you try to stream an Office 365 Videos from Azure Media Services in your application running on iOS 9.

It seems that Microsoft is actually doing some modifications on the infrastructure of the Office 365 platform, especially around the SSL certificates, because today I’m facing the same error when using the Outlook REST API.

I’m trying to call the following URL which should return the last 10 messages stored in the inbox  of the authenticated user :

https://outlook.office365.com/api/v2.0/Me/MailFolders('Inbox')/Messages

But I get the following error message, which indicates there’s an issue with SSL certificates :

NSURLSession/NSURLConnection HTTP load failed (kCFStreamErrorDomainSSL, -9802)

Error Domain=NSURLErrorDomain Code=-1200 "An SSL error has occurred and a secure connection to the server cannot be made."
UserInfo={NSLocalizedDescription=An SSL error has occurred and a secure connection to the server cannot be made., NSLocalizedRecoverySuggestion=Would you like to connect to the server anyway?, _kCFStreamErrorDomainKey=3, NSUnderlyingError=0x7d96cd90 {Error Domain=kCFErrorDomainCFNetwork Code=-1200 "(null)" UserInfo={_kCFStreamPropertySSLClientCertificateState=0, _kCFNetworkCFStreamSSLErrorOriginalValue=-9802, _kCFStreamErrorCodeKey=-9802, _kCFStreamErrorDomainKey=3, kCFStreamPropertySSLPeerTrust=<SecTrustRef: 0x7afb9d50>, kCFStreamPropertySSLPeerCertificates=<CFArray 0x7ae63490 [0xa97098]>{type = immutable, count = 2, values = (
 0 : <cert(0x7afb8570) s: outlook.com i: Microsoft IT SSL SHA1>
 1 : <cert(0x7afb96d0) s: Microsoft IT SSL SHA1 i: Baltimore CyberTrust Root>
)}}}, _kCFStreamErrorCodeKey=-9802, NSErrorFailingURLStringKey=https://outlook.office365.com/api/v2.0/Me/MailFolders('Inbox')/Messages, NSErrorPeerCertificateChainKey=<CFArray 0x7ae63490 [0xa97098]>{type = immutable, count = 2, values = (
 0 : <cert(0x7afb8570) s: outlook.com i: Microsoft IT SSL SHA1>
 1 : <cert(0x7afb96d0) s: Microsoft IT SSL SHA1 i: Baltimore CyberTrust Root>
)}, NSErrorClientCertificateStateKey=0, NSURLErrorFailingURLPeerTrustErrorKey=<SecTrustRef: 0x7afb9d50>, NSErrorFailingURLKey=https://outlook.office365.com/api/v2.0/Me/MailFolders('Inbox')/Messages}

The cause of this error is still the same as explained in our previous article : App Transport Security (ATS).

To solve the issue, you need to add some lines in your Info.plist to configure ATS to ignore the SSL error.

<key>NSAppTransportSecurity</key>
<dict>
  <key>NSExceptionDomains<key>
  <dict>
    <key>outlook.office365.com</key>
    <dict>
      <key>NSExceptionRequiresForwardSecrecy</key>
      <false/>
    </dict>
  </dict>
</dict>

You can also edit this file using the editor in Xcode rather than manually edit the XML file :

Office365 Outlook REST API - App Transport Security