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My business partner and I work from seperate offices and need to share and have access to each others contacts on outlook 2010. We also have office 365, we need to be able to customise the contacts fields to put in specific things and then need the other partners outlook to automaticaly make the changes and additions there end, can this be done and if so how?
We are using it as a database, if we can get this right!
Are your partner and you part of the same Office 365 account? Is so, then you should would have access to the same Global Address List (GAL). However, this is not something that is easily accessible to modified by multiple people and partners unless you wanted to give them all admin access. You could possibly setup some RBAC (Role Based Access Control) to limit access, but I haven't looked into doing this specifically for External Contacts. Global contacts are Active Directory objects and are managed from an on-premise Exchange or Active Directory if you are in directory sync. They can be created and managed in O365 using powershell, or by using the ECP (Exchange Control Panel -> External Contacts user interface. The GAL is available from Outlook, OWA (Outlook Web App), and mobile devices.
Personal contacts can can be shared and can be accessed via Outlook but not OWA. See "Sharing Contacts" at community.office365.com/.../45944.aspx.
Probably using Sharepoint Online (SPO)is your best option. There is a contact list feature that I believe integrates with Outlook. You could also create a custom list in SPO. You can see this post for some discussion on the subject: "Contacts Database" community.office365.com/.../42224.aspx.
A final forums post that covers a lot of this information: "Shared Contacts - global" at community.office365.com/.../2151.aspx
Todd Douglass - MSFT Support Engineer