Service Updates for Office 365 for enterprises, mid-size businesses, and education (English)

Service Updates for Office 365 for enterprises, mid-size businesses, and education (English)

Welcome to the Service Updates wiki for Office 365 for enterprises, mid-size businesses, and education. Here you will find information about the latest features and improvements to Office 365.

2014

Previous Years:

back to top

January 2014

People View

Roll-out started January 2014: People view is a feature that filters a user’s inbox to only show email messages received from people who are the user's frequent contacts. When a frequent contact sends the user a new email, the sender's photo is displayed beneath “People” in the Folder Pane. When the user selects the sender’s photo under “People,” email messages from that sender are shown. For more details read People View in Outlook Web App on the Office Blogs.

Lync Mobile – New features for iOS and WP

  • Now you can view shared PowerPoint presentations during a Lync Meeting (both iOS and WP)
  • New iOS7 look and feel
  • Voice control to Join a Lync Meeting and Play a voice mail (only on WP).

For more information go to the Lync Mobile update for iOS and Windows Phone on the Lync Team Blog.

Partner Admin Center - Customer Management Tools

The new Office 365 Partner admin center was released in January 2014 and provides Partners new tools to manage the customers in which they have delegated admin privileges. Partners login to their Office 365 admin portal and click Partner on the top header to enter the Partner admin center. From here, Partners can see a list of all customers that they have delegated admin privileges, select an individual customer and view subscription information, view service health information, view service request information or perform delegated admin tasks on behalf of the customer. The initial release will support a customer list of up to 100 customers, and Partners will continue to be able to search for customers by domain name. For more information go to Introducing the new Office 365 Partner admin center on the Office blogs.

back to top

2013

back to top

December 2013

Lync Online Windows Store App Update

Lync Windows Store app update has been shipped. The update is focused on the Windows Blue compatibility, with app2app launch, changeable screen size, and bypassing 'quiet hours'. It also have the ability to answer calls when the screen is locked and taking control both on app sharing and remote desktop.

Switch Plans (SKU Transitions) across SKU Families

Now Small Business Office 365 subscribers can switch to both Midsize and Enterprise plans, and Midsize Business subscribers can switch to Enterprise plans. To read more go to Office.com article and You can now Switch Plans to a different Office 365 service family on the Office 365 technology blog.

Office 365 Admin App is now on Android and iOS

For more information please check out the post on the Office 365 technology blog.

back to top

November 2013

Photos of Sender/Receiver in IM Window

View the photo of both sender/receiver inline during an IM conversation. For more information please check out the post on the Lync Team blog.

New Lync Meeting Recording Options

Select what resolution you want your Lync recordings to be. Either 480p, 720p HD, or 1080p Full HD. For more information please check out the post on the Lync Team blog.

Lync Login Trace Files

Facilitate troubleshooting of client login issues with easy to access trace files. For more information please check out the post on the Lync Team blog.

OneNote for Windows Store v2.1

Major update for OneNote for Windows Store available now for all SKUs and all channels. Now with a redesigned user interface. Included are new views, enhanced sharing, improved ink, and more new features. For more information see the Microsoft Store.

Get a Link

It is now possible to generate a Guest Link (an anonymous link to a document) directly in the SharePoint Online document library user interface. This will remove the step of sending an email to yourself to generate the Guest Link in order to utilize the Guest Link for non-email purposes - and it's quicker and more efficient.

Touch Design for Share Point Online on Mobile Devices

We are updating the default HTML5 "mobile view" in mobile browsers. Users accessing SharePoint on mobile devices will get an updated touch-friendly experience. The new experiences primarily target the Web views of a user's SkyDrive Pro, the Sites hub and default team site pages. For more information read the technology blog post SharePoint Online introduces the Touch Design mobile experience.

SharePoint Online Improved Sharing Emails - All on To... line

Now everyone you share with will be on the To ... line. When you share with multiple people via the sharing dialog in SharePoint, SharePoint will send one email to everyone you shared with and cc you as the sender, rather than sending a separate email to each recipient. Note: external email addresses typed in the people picker will still send individual external invitations, since external invites need unique redemption links.

High DPI Improvements

The latest update of Outlook 2013 is now optimized for high pixel density screens on tablet devices.

Compact Message Header

In the latest update of Outlook 2013, the email message header in the reading pane can be collapsed to provide more screen space for the body of the email. Also, when the reading pane is too narrow to show all recipients in the message header, an indicator appears to tell you how many recipients are not shown.

Yammer Channel Expansion

Yammer Enterprise will be included in O365 E1-E4, including Government and Non-Profits, for the Direct, Syndication, and Open channels with automated self service provisioning. Additionally, new SKUs Yammer Enterprise Standalone and SharePoint Online Plan 1/2 + Yammer will launch for Direct and Syndication Channels. For more information read the Office 365 for Business blog.

Windows Azure Active Directory Premium – PREVIEW

Windows Azure Active Directory Premium, which is currently in preview, provides a number of directory related features through the Windows Azure portal. Many of these will be very valuable for Office 365 customers. The new features for Windows Azure Active Directory Premium include

  1. Self-service Password Reset for Users
  2. Group-based provisioning and access management to SaaS apps
  3. Customizable access panel
  4. Machine learning based security monitoring and reports.

Stay tuned as there are additional features are planned in future previews.

Folder Permissions in Outlook Web App

With Outlook Web App, you can now quickly and easily give co-workers permissions to view and modify messages in your mailbox, while you are taking time-off from work. For more information read the Office 365 technology blog post ‘Folder permissions in Outlook Web App’.

Calendar Delegation in Outlook Web App

You can now give others access to your calendar while you are taking time-off from work. For more information read the Office 365 technology blog post ‘Calendar delegation in Outlook Web App‘.

Improving Outlook 2013 Performance with Office 365

Starting with the latest update of Outlook 2013, Microsoft is improving the health and performance of the Office 365 service by collecting additional information from clients that are connecting to the online service. Read the public KB on support.microsoft.com.

back to top

October 2013

OneNote for Android 2.2

The update for OneNote for Android is now available as of October 2013 for all SKUs. For more information read the Office 365 technology blog post ‘OneNote for Android in more markets worldwide!’

Members Can Share in SharePoint

Members of a site can share documents and the site itself without having to approve them through the site collection owner. For more information read the Office 365 technology blog post ‘SkyDrive Pro increases storage and ease of sharing’.

Content Search Web Part

You can now insert a Content Search Web Part from the Insert menu when editing a SharePoint Online page. For more information read the Office 365 technology blog post ‘Introducing the Content Search Web Part’.

Power BI PREVIEW for Office 365

Roll-out completed.

Apps for Office - Seller Dashboard Enhancement

Enhancements to Apps for Office Seller Dashboard - enabling subscription pricing for Apps for Office & SharePoint. For more information read the Office 365 technology blog post ‘Office Store investments bring new opportunities to developers’.

Lync Mobile Updates for Windows Phone and iOS

For more information read the Office 365 technology blog post.

Go-Daddy Integration

For more information read the Office 365 technology blog post.

SharePoint Online SkyDrive Pro for iOS v1.1

SkyDrive Pro for iOS now has a tier 1 editing experience. Microsoft is adding two new capabilities to the existing SkyDrive Pro for iOS app. The additional capabilities fall under the improved integration with other Office apps (Office Mobile for iPhone, Office Web Apps, and OneNote for iPhone):

  1. Integration with the Office Mobile for iPhone app (on iPhone) and Office Web Apps (on iPad) for editing Word, Excel, and PowerPoint documents while maintaining file integrity in-place in SharePoint Online.
  2. Integration with the OneNote app for viewing and editing notebooks. OneNote apps, as of this month, support Office 365. This new feature enables mobile editing of OneNote files stored in SkyDrive Pro

For more information read the Office 365 technology blog post.

back to top

September 2013

SharePoint & Yammer Integration: POST & Search

Two new SharePoint & Yammer integration went live in September

  • start a Yammer conversation for any document that is stored in a SharePoint Online document libraries or in SkyDrive Pro just by clicking Post (new "POST" button next to EDIT & SHARE)
  • New "Search on Yammer" link in the SP search center will pass the query string in Yammer

For more information read the Office 365 technology blog post.

SharePoint Online Turn on Versioning by Default

For more information read the Office 365 technology blog post.

SharePoint Online Increase Site Collection Limit: 3,000 -> 10,000 -

For more information read the Office 365 technology blog post.

SharePoint Online Increase Recycle Bin Default to 90 Days

For more information read the Office 365 technology blog post.

SharePoint Online Increase List Lookup Limit

For more information read the Office 365 technology blog post.

SharePoint Online Allow Additional File Types - .exe and .dll

For more information read the Office 365 technology blog post.

Lync Online Spell check

Starting this month, we are adding a spell check functionality in the Lync desktop client! The familiar spell check interface from other Office apps comes to Lync.

back to top

August 2013

Increase Exchange Cutover Migration Limit

We increased the Exchange cutover migration limit from 1,000 to 2,000 mailboxes. This enables larger customers to use this migration scenario, and therefore making it easier for larger customers to move the service.

Exchange Online Modern Public Folder Mailbox Quota Increase

Increase modern public folder mailbox size in service to 50 GB / PF mailbox allowing easier operations, easier on-boarding, and increase storage support.

Power BI PREVIEW for Office 365

Power BI provides users with a complete Self Service BI solution for all users through the familiar and intuitive BI capabilities in Excel and ease of collaboration through Office 365.

This new BI offering will enable users to:

  • Discover, Analyze, and Visualize with Excel
  • Collaborate and Stay Connected
  • In the Cloud, on Your Terms

For more information and to register for the preview, go to powerbi.com. To learn more about recent improvements to the preview, see this recent blog post.

Office 365 in Open Dynamic Keys

Customers will now receive a single key for each SKU they purchase through Open, regardless of the number of seats they purchase. This will simplify the purchase and setup experience for both customers and partners by reducing the number of keys they will need to manage.

Cascading Controls in Access apps for SharePoint

SharePoint app developer can make the options in a form control, such as a dropdown, relevant to the option chosen from a different control in the same Access app for SharePoint.

For more Information go to the Office 365 Technology Blog.

Exchange Online Mailbox Size Increase

The size of user mailboxes Exchange Online and Office 365 multi-tenant service plans are doubling. The current standard 25 GB user mailbox will now include 50 GB of mailbox storage. Shared Mailboxes and Resources Mailboxes increasing to 10 GB each. Kiosk user mailboxes will increase from 1 GB to 2 GB. Site Mailboxes remain unchanged. Roll-out started in August; all customer should receive by end of November 2013. For more information read the Office 365 technology blog.

Increase SkyDrive Pro Default Storage to 25GB

This improvement increases each user's SkyDrive Pro default allocation to 25GB, up from 7GB. Available now as of August 2013 for all plans except K1 and K2 and external users. For more information go to the Office 365 technology blog.

SharePoint Online Increases File Upload Limit to 2GB

It is now possible to upload a file that is up to 2GB in size. The previous limit was 250MB. This will enable storage of larger files across a customer's SharePoint Online environment in Office 365. For more information go to the Office 365 technology blog.

PowerShell for Lync Online

Windows PowerShell is a command shell and scripting language that you can use to manage and automate aspects of Lync Online using a command-line instead of the browser based Office 365 admin center. For more information read the post on the Office 365 technology blog.

Message Center

On August 1st, we released a new admin service communication feature called Message Center. Message Center isn’t intended to replace email service alerts customers receive today, it is a complementary in-product experience to help keep customers up to speed on critical communications, and actions administrators need to take. It also expands upon service alert emails informing customers about new features coming to the service. Over time we’ll continue enhance the experience adding new features like localization and tenant specific reporting. For more information watch the Office 365 Technology blog.

back to top

July 2013

SharePoint Newsfeed App for Windows 8

A new modern app for Windows 8 that helps the user connect with their SharePoint Newsfeed. For more information read the post on the Office 365 Technology Blog.

OneNote iPhone 2.0

What's New in Version 2.0 • Updated navigation makes it easier to view and find your notes • Improved note formatting and consistency across your devices • Edit existing tables • Ink annotations and rich text formatting now viewable • Automatically sync your notes to SkyDrive Pro and SharePoint • Most recently used notebook lists sync across devices • Optimized for iPhone 5 display. For more information please read the Microsoft OneNote for iPhone article.

OneNote iPad 2.0

What's New in Version 2.0 • Updated navigation makes it easier to view and find your notes • Improved note formatting and consistency across your devices • Create tables or edit existing tables • Ink annotations and rich text formatting now viewable • Full page view lets your notes fill the screen • Automatically sync your notes to SkyDrive Pro and SharePoint Most recently used notebook lists sync across devices. For more information please read the Microsoft OneNote for iPad article.

OWA for iPhone and OWA for iPad

OWA for iPhone and OWA for iPad are available now for Office 365 subscriptions that include the latest update of Exchange Online. These mobile apps, installed directly from the Apple App Store, offer the same email, calendar and contact functionality you get in Outlook Web App on the browser, but with additional capabilities that are only possible through native integration of the apps with the mobile device. To learn more, please read the Office 365 Technology blog OWA for iPhone and OWA for iPad.

Lync Q&A Manager for Meetings

Facilitate a structured Q&A session during a Lync meeting. Questions and answers are clearly differentiated and only presenters can answer questions. Presenters can ask and answer questions. Attendees can only ask. For more information please read the Lync Team blog.

Lync Meeting Instant Messenger (IM) Mute

A meeting owner or presenter can choose to mute or disable an attendee's ability to send instant messages in the meeting window. This functionality can be enabled during a meeting or at a scheduled time as an option. For more information please read the Lync Team blog.

Updated Lync Mobile Apps for Windows Phone 8 and iOS

Updated Lync mobile clients will be released to their respective app stores to include app/screen sharing viewing, rejoin a scheduled meeting, mute participants, transfer calls, continue past conversations, etc. For more information please read the blog post on TechNet.

Lync Embedded Images

Embed images directly into Lync IM conversations. For more information please read the blog post on blog post on TechNet.

Office Mobile for Android Phones

Office Mobile for Android phones will be available from Google Play at no additional charge for Office 365 subscribers. Office 365 subscribers will be able to work on their Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents from virtually anywhere - using their Windows Phone, iPhone or Android phones. Initially available in the United States and in other markets over the next several weeks. Regarding availability for Dedicated customers, please check with the local SDM. To learn more, please read the Office 365 Technology blog.

Office 365 Directory Sync Quota Automated Increase to 300,000 Users

New Office 365 tenants are limited to synchronizing 50,000 users from an on-premises Active Directory to the cloud. If a customer has more than 50,000 users and uses the DirSync tool to synchronize those to Office 365, they would previously need to call Office 365 Technical Support to get an increase in the quota. Without the quota increase customers will see errors from the DirSync tool when they exceed the quota. We recently released an improvement to the directory quota increase mechanism. This will increase a customer’s directory quota to 300,000 objects automatically when they verify their first custom Internet domain. Customers that have more than 300,000 objects, or that do not verify any custom domains, will still need to call Office 365 Technical Support to increase their quotas. Existing customers who previously verified a custom domain may still see a quota limit of 50,000. Those customers should call Office 365 Technical Support to request a quota increase. We expect that as a result of this change, most customers will not need to call Technical Support for quota increases. For more information please read the details of the directory synchronization tool and the user object quotas on TechNet.

back to top

June 2013

SkyDrive Pro Standalone Sync Client for Windows

This standalone client allows users of SharePoint 2013 and SharePoint Online in Office 365 to sync their personal SkyDrive Pro and any SharePoint 2013 or Office 365 team site document libraries to their local machine for access to important content on and offline.

For more information read the SharePoint blog post.

SkyDrive Pro apps for Windows 8 and iOS

New, native SkyDrive Pro apps for both Windows 8 and iOS enable users to access their documents placed in their SkyDrive Pro library. SkyDrive Pro apps for Windows 8 and iOS is now available for all SKUs except K 1,2 as of June 2013.

For more information, read the Technology Blog post.

Office Mobile for iPhone

Office Mobile for iPhone available at no extra charge from the Apple App Store for Office 365 Home Premium and Office 365 ProPlus subscribers.

For more information read this post on the Office 365 Technology Blog.

Yammer and Office 365 Integration

In this rollout, we provide (1) a link to Yammer as a replacement to the existing newsfeed page and (2) a Yammer app for SharePoint to easily embed Yammer groups into SharePoint sites. Yammer and Office 365 Integration are now available as of June 2013 for E 1,3,4, P1,2, SPOP1,2.

For more information read the public Office 365 Technology Blog post and this SharePoint Blog article.

Lync Skype Federation Update: Now Live

The first step in bringing our customers the value of Lync and Skype together is live with presence, instant messaging, and audio calling between Lync and Skype. Now Lync customers have the ability to use the global reach of Skype to connect and collaborate with suppliers, customers, and partners while still relying on the enterprise richness of Lync.

For more information, please refer to the following announcements:
- Lync Team Blog announcement
- Skype Big Blog announcement
- A Customer Perspective: L’Occitane

Excel Web App Update – Available Now

In late June, Excel Web App were updated with new end user capabilities for an improved Office experience on the Web. The Updates include:

  • Freeze Pane support for easier scrolling of large workbooks
  • Interact with Data Validation enabled cells, where Excel Web App users can select from predefined values in a workbook
  • Clear formatting applied to selected cells
  • Auto-complete as you type
  • Sort a range of data
  • Reorder sheets in a workbook
  • Hide and unhide rows, columns and sheets in a workbook

For more information read the Excel blog post.

Word Web App PDF Previews of Outlook Web App Attachments - Available Now

This update enables PDF attachments in Outlook Web App to be viewed in the Word Web App. It makes it simpler for users to view their PDF files in-browser without the need for special plug-ins. PDF attachment Preview in Word Web App is available now as of June 2013.

For more information read this post on the Office Web Apps blog.

Windows Azure Active Directory Adds Password Synchronization to the Directory Sync tool – Available Now

This new Password Sync feature synchronizes user password hashes from on-premises Active Directory to Office 365, enabling users to log into their Office 365 services using the same password as they use to log into their corporate networks. For many customers this avoids the need to deploy Active Directory Federation Services. The Directory Sync tool is downloadable from within the Office 365 admin portal for use by Office 365 tenant administrators. This new version was announced at TechEd North America 2013.

To learn more, read Office 365 deployment’s planned phase in this TechNet article Planning Directory Synchronization.

back to top

May 2013

Go-Daddy

To learn more, read the article 'Easily bring your custom domain to Office 365 with GoDaddy' on the Office 365 Technology Blog.

Facebook and LinkedIn Social Connect

Office 365 users can now synchronize their LinkedIn and Facebook contacts to the Office 365 service. This gives users the ability to link contacts across LinkedIn, Facebook and their Office 365 directory to view all information about a person together. Contact information is always up-to-date, because the Office 365 service checks LinkedIn and Facebook several times a day to capture any changes to a user’s contact information. This includes information such as new contacts, email address changes, phone number and other changes. LinkedIn Social Connect is available in all of our service plans, while Facebook Social Connect is currently only available in our small business and education service plans.

To learn more, read the Community blog Introducing Facebook and LinkedIn Connect.

Standalone Rights Management Services Available in May

Rights Management Service as a new Office 365 add-on is now available for SKUs such as E1, A2, K1 for information protection. Rights Management protects data via encryption, prevents the accidental disclosure of data via usage polices, and is simple to integrate with customer applications. Previously RMS was only available in E3 and above or A3 and above.

Lync Online Integrated Reporting Now Available

Lync Online reporting is now accessible through the integrated O365 admin portal. For tenants created today and in the future, Lync reporting will be live. Existing tenants may not see the reports until the tenant is upgraded at the end of the month. There are four Lync Online reports available now are:

  1. # of IM and audio sessions
  2. # of IM and audio/video conferences
  3. # of video, application sharing, and file transfer sessions
  4. # of application sharing, web, and dial-in conferences

The reports are available to all SKUs except for P. In addition, to view the reports, you must have an Exchange license as well.

Exchange Online Archiving (EOA) Available as an Add-on to Any Exchange Online Plan

Exchange Online Archiving (EOA) can now be purchased as an add-on to any Exchange Online plan, including Kiosk and Plan 1. Exchange Online Archiving, which includes legal hold and unlimited storage, was previously only available as an add-on to on-premises Exchange Server 2010 mailboxes.

Additional information
To learn more about EOA, read the TechNet article Archiving Exchange Online-based mailboxes or visit Exchange Online Archiving on Office.com.

Office Web Apps Added to E1 and K1

Office Web Apps was added to E1 and K1 in order to simplify the SKU lineup for commercial and Government. The change is now available for all customers who have signed up as of 2/27 and most existing customers. The remaining customers will have the update completed through the end of May, independent of the upgrade to the New Office. Admins should note that Office Web Apps will not appear on the licensing page for E1 or K1 customers.

Lync Online Certificates Upgraded

As part of our ongoing commitment to security we are making a change to our SSL certificate chain that will require our customers and partners to take action before June 1st, 2013. Lync Online Servers currently use the GTE CyberTrust Global Root and beginning on June 1st, 2013 will migrate to the Baltimore CyberTrust Root. The new root certificate uses a stronger key length and hashing algorithm which ensures we remain consistent with industry-wide security best practices for trusted root certificates. If your services does not accept certificates chained to both the GTE CyberTrust Global Root and the Baltimore CyberTrust Root, please take action prior to June 1st, 2013 to avoid certificate validation errors. While we seek to minimize the need for customers to take specific action based on changes we make to Lync Server, we believe this is an important security improvement. Here you can download the Baltimore CyberTrust Root.

Here is how you can verify your service will not be affected by this change:

  • If you perform Windows Updates regularly: Validate that the new Baltimore Root cert is already present in the “(LocalComputer) Trusted Root Certification Authorities” cert store on each Server.

  • If you do not perform Windows Updates regularly and/or new Baltimore Root cert is not appearing in cert trusted root store: Perform Windows Update for this requirement or import the Baltimore Root to each Microsoft facing Server.

Here you can download the Baltimore CyberTrust Root.

Office 365 Public Preview - Transition to Paid Subscription

The Office 365 public preview was a program we ran from July 2012 to February 2013 to give customers an early look at the Office 365 service upgrade.

The public preview program was designed such that when it ended customers would lose the data in those tenants, and it included warnings to indicate this before customers signed up. Due to customer feedback we have done work to enable public preview tenants to continue if needed. The public preview subscriptions on those tenants will expire, and for customers who are still using those tenants we are providing a way to transition to a paid subscription on the same tenant. The transition enables customers to keep their tenant name and to keep their data. Please note that public preview tenants are not supported and questions should be directed to the Office 365 Community Forums. The transition involves deleting the public preview subscription and once this is done the Office 365 service will be interrupted. The tenant owner then has 10 days to purchase a new subscription from within the tenant admin portal. Instructions are provided for this process here: Instructions.

For the “disable subscription” button to appear the tenant must meet certain criteria:

  1. Must have Office 365 Preview at the top left
  2. Must have only one subscription that is not deprovisioned
  3. The subscription must be one of the Public Preview offers, such as “Microsoft Office 365 Enterprise Preview” or “Microsoft Office 365 Small Business Premium Preview”.
back to top

April 2013

Simplified POP, IMAP and SMTP Namespaces

It’s now much simpler to set up a POP or IMAP connection to an Office 365 account. If a phone, tablet, or desktop email program can’t take advantage of Exchange Online’s auto discover capabilities, the new Exchange Online now provides the ability to connect using unified server namespaces. Instead of being asked to locate unique POP/IMAP/SMTP server settings through Outlook Web App (which looked like “podxxxxx.outlook.com”), the following standard server names can now be used:

o POP & IMAP: outlook.office365.com
o SMTP: smtp.office365.com

Additional information
Customers who have already set up connections do not need to take any action to maintain connectivity. Their current settings will continue to work.
For specific steps for connecting your phone or tablet to your Office 365 email, see Phone and Tablet setup reference. For specific steps for connecting your desktop email program to your Office 365 email, see Email program setup reference.

Public Preview of Project Codename “GeoFlow” for Excel

On April 11, 2013 the Public Preview of project codename “GeoFlow” became available for download with sample datasets. As a new 3D data visualization add-in for Excel 2013, GeoFlow provides a powerful method for people to look at information in new ways enabling discoveries in data that might never be seen in traditional 2D tables and charts. “GeoFlow” lets you plot geographic and temporal data visually, analyze that data in 3D, and create interactive tours to share with others. With “GeoFlow” you can:

  1. Map data: plot up to a million rows of data in 3D visually on Bing maps.
  2. Discover insights: discover new insights by seeing your data in geographic space and seeing time-stamped data change over time.
  3. Share tories: capture "scenes" and build cinematic, guided interactive "tours" that can be shared broadly, engaging audiences like never before.

It is a free download on the Microsoft Download Center and then enabled as a COM add-in for Excel 2013 like Power View, PowerPivot, and Inquire. Learn more by reading the these Excel Blogs: Public preview of project codename “GeoFlow” for Excel and Dallas Utilities GeoFlow use case.

Yammer SKU Plan and Pricing

On March 1, 2013, Yammer became available to Microsoft Enterprise Agreement customers. Enterprise Agreement customers will be able to purchase Yammer Enterprise via Microsoft volume licensing. Microsoft has also created a set of combo SKUs for SharePoint Online (Plan 1 and Plan 2) + Yammer Enterprise. SharePoint Online + Yammer provides customers with a world-class collaboration platform and enterprise social capabilities. Yammer Enterprise also ships with Office 365 for enterprises (Office 365 E Plans 1–4). Office 365 customers will have rights to run Office 365 for access to email, calendars, Office Web Apps, instant messaging, and file sharing and will have Yammer Enterprise for social. Along with shipping Yammer with some of our most popular services, we will also be lowering the price for Yammer Enterprise standalone. Visit the public Yammer pricing page to learn more. Stay tuned for more information in the coming months as we add more buying plans!

Yammer and Office 365 Roadmap Update

On March 19th 2013, we announced the updated roadmap for the Yammer and Office 365 integration. For more information on Yammer and Office 365 integration see this SharePoint blog post.

Lync Federation Update: Windows Live Messenger Transitions to Skype

Microsoft is bringing Windows Live Messenger and Skype together. Starting April 8th, Messenger users will gradually be migrated to Skype upon sign-in. It will take several weeks to complete this transition across the Messenger customer base. Lync customers that rely on federation with Messenger will continue to be able to communicate with their Messenger contacts, even after those contacts update to Skype. There is nothing that Lync administrators or Lync end users need to do to maintain continuity of service, and management of this capability within Lync remains the same as it has been for communications with Messenger.

When Messenger users sign into Skype using their Microsoft accounts (i.e., the same credentials used for Messenger) all of their Messenger contacts—including federated Lync contacts—follow them into Skype. Presence sharing and instant messaging between Skype and Lync for these contacts is available immediately. Adding new Lync contacts into Skype and audio calling between Skype and Lync are not yet available but are coming soon.

Full Lync-Skype Connectivity—contact adding, presence sharing, instant messaging, and audio calling between Lync and Skype users—will be available to all Lync customers by June.

New mobile client for Lync (Android)

The Lync 2013 mobile client for the Android phone was released to Google Play. The new app adds additional functionality to the Lync mobile client such as voice/video over IP and one click to join meetings from Android.

Additional information
For more information read Tony Bates’ Technical Blog post Re-humanizing communications from the living room to the board room

back to top

March 2013

Inactive Mailboxes

For customers on the new Office 365: When a mailbox that has been placed under In-Place Hold is deleted (because the user has departed the organization), that mailbox will be converted to an inactive mailbox. In this state, email cannot be sent or received from the mailbox, and it will be removed from user-facing views. However, the mailbox will still be available for eDiscovery.

Additional information
For more information see Managing Inactive Mailboxes in Exchange Online

New Mobile Clients for Lync

Lync 2013 mobile clients for Windows Phone 8, iPad, and iPhone were released to their respective app stores. These new apps add additional functionality to the Lync mobile client such as voice/video over IP and one click to join meetings.

back to top

February2013

Rights Management Services Availability

Rights Management Service is a new Office 365 offering for information protection. Rights Management protects data via encryption, prevents the accidental disclosure of data via usage polices, and is simple to integrate with your applications. RMS is built-in to Exchange Online, SharePoint Online and Office. You can get more information via TechNet here. RMS for Office 365 will be available broadly for customers at General Availability (GA). RMS is available in Microsoft Office 365 Plans E3, E4, A3 and A4 SKUs.

Office 365 Service Descriptions

Office 365 Service Descriptions are now being published on TechNet to help customers understand the technical differences between the different Office 365 offers (SKUs) and limits or boundaries of the service. The service descriptions also provide short feature descriptions to help customers understand the breadth of capabilities in the service and link to more detailed how-to content. The old service descriptions on the download center will not be updated going forward and will eventually be removed.

Address Book Policies for Exchange Online

Address Book Policies provide different views of the Global Address List (GAL) to subsets of users within the same Exchange Organization. This segmentation allows administrators to optimize address lists in large organizations, creating smaller 'virtual' organizations with users only able to see the users they need to see. Previously only available in Exchange Server, this capability will now be available for Exchange Online.

Additional Information:
For more information on Address Book Policies for Exchange Online read this TechNet article.

back to top

January 2013

No updates.

back to top

2012

December 2012

Recipient Rate Limit Increase to 10K for Office 365 and Exchange Online

In response to feedback from our customers, we have increased the recipient rate limit within Office 365 Enterprise (E1, E2, E3, E4, K1, and K2) and Government plans (G1, G2, G3, and G4) to allow users to send email to up to 10,000 recipients per day. These new limits also apply to standalone Exchange Online plans (Kiosk, Plan 1, and Plan 2). Previously, the recipient rate limit for users of these plans had been set at a maximum of 1,500 recipients per day.

Recipient rate limits exist to discourage users from sending large volumes of unsolicited commercial email, commonly referred to as spam. These limits protect our online service from becoming a source of spam and, as a result of these protections, keep our customers’ email messages flowing. Datacenter enhancements have allowed us to increase this limit while maintaining the same level of protection.

These limits apply both to email messages sent within an organization and those delivered to external organizations. The best way to avoid exceeding the recipient rate limit is to use distribution groups when sending messages to large numbers of recipients. Distribution groups stored in the shared address book are counted as a single recipient toward the recipient rate limit.

Additional Information:
For more information, see Strategies to Support Bulk Email. Office 365 customers who need to send legitimate bulk commercial email — such as customer newsletters – should continue to use third-party providers that specialize in these services. If you would like more information on recipient rate limits, see Bulk Email and Daily Recipient Rate Limits. We made this change because of your feedback. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us, and please keep it up!

back to top

November 2012

No updates.

back to top

October 2012

New Office Web Apps features in SharePoint

With the latest SharePoint Online update, you’ll get new Office Web Apps features: more editing and formatting controls, co-authoring support across the web apps and expanded device support, including editing from tablets.

Using web-based versions of Word, PowerPoint, Excel and OneNote you can view, edit, and work together on Office documents from nearly anywhere. Here is a highlight of the new features across each Office Web App:

  • Word Web App Update: See graphics, images, and layout with excellent fidelity, including new support for viewing and adding comments. Format and design documents right from a browser with commonly used features from Word on the desktop, including new page layout tools, picture tools and word count. New co-authoring and comment support in Word Web App makes it easier to work together on the web.

  • Excel Web App updates: Get essential spreadsheet features, such as merge cells, context menus, auto-fit columns, formula assistance, fill handle and AutoSum. Manipulate and visualize data for deeper insights with support for high fidelity charts including 3D, improved Query Table and Data Validation support, Slicer functionality and Pivot Chart interactivity.

  • PowerPoint Web App updates: Presentations look like they do on the desktop, with high-resolution slides, full transitions, and viewable comments. Audio and video playback is now supported, even from a tablet or phone. Drag and drop support makes for easier layouts. While the ability to insert images, apply transitions and animations, or add a pre-designed theme make polished presentations from a browser possible. And new co-authoring and comment support in PowerPoint Web App improves collaboration in the cloud.

  • OneNote Web App updates: Users can find what they need more easily with the ability to search on a page or within a section. And new support for ink viewing makes more information accessible from the web. Just click-to-type anywhere on the page to add a note, picture or a tag. And notes can now be shared as a URL, viewable on a phone, PC or tablet through a browser.

If you would like to learn more, we recommend the following blog post by Mike Morton, Group Program Manager of the Office Web Applications, which describes the coming Office Web App enhancements.

Note: Office 365 will be ending support for Internet Explorer 7 (IE7) on October 1st, 2012. The upcoming Office Web Apps update does not support IE7. Please review the Office 365 system requirements page here.

Additional Information:
To read more on Web Apps go to this Technical Blog article.

Dirsync Scoping and Filtering

This feature gives the ability for customers to scope what objects are synchronized from the activity directory to Office 365. The filtering options available are Organization-unit-based, domain-based, and user-attribute-based.

Interop with Third-Party Identity Solutions

Microsoft has a structured program in place to enable customers using qualified 3rd party identity solutions (STSs) in their IT infrastructure to adopt Office 365 and set up federation. Through this program we have tested federation with Office 365 using STSs such as Ping, Optimal IDM etc. The protocol used for federation is WS* (WS-Federation and WS-Trust). The scenarios that are tested (such as active, passive etc.) and found to be working are documented in TechNet. These partner solutions are also available in Office 365 Marketplace.

Admin Ability to Set Password Expiration and Notification Policy

Admins in our E and A offers are being provided the ability to set password expiration and notification policies for their users. Notifications can be set anywhere between 0 and 30 days before a password actually expires. These changes can be performed in the admin user interface.

PDF Viewing within your browser

We are pleased to announce that you can now view PDF files directly in your browser - you no longer have to download PDF files to your desktop to view them. Adobe Reader is required to install the proper browser plug-in. Once the plug-in is installed, you can open any PDF file that is stored in a SharePoint Online document library or PDFs embedded as attachments within list items directly in your browser.

Additional Information:
For more information read the Office 365 SharePoint blog post

Streaming large MP4 files

We are pleased to announce that MP4 video files stored in a SharePoint Online library will begin streaming much faster without downloading the full file first. Full download of the file would at times cause delay and/or unwanted buffering. This new feature enhancement will greatly improve the playback of MP4 files.

Additional Information:
For more information read the Office 365 SharePoint blog post

back to top

September 2012

Password Expiration Notifications in Outlook

Outlook 2007 and 2010 now provides users with password expiration notifications. These advance notifications will be shown in a pop-up message within a certain period of time as configurable by the administrator. They will also include links (URLs) to the Microsoft Online Portal where users can change/update their passwords. Outlook will quit if the user clicks on ‘No’. The user will still be able to access his inbox, but Outlook will show a “need password” notification and no new mail will be synced. For users whose passwords have already expired, Outlook will flash an error message.

Screenshots Added to Domain Verification Guides

To use a custom domain with Office 365, administrators must edit DNS records to verify ownership of the domain. The Office 365 portal walks administrators through this verification process, explaining the specific steps to perform at popular domain registrars. These steps now include screenshots that illustrate the exact place in the registrar’s web site to perform each task.

Registrar-Specific Instructions for Creating DNS Records

Step-by-step guides are now available to help Office 365 administrators create DNS records at popular domain registrars. Previously, registrar-specific instructions were available for the first step of DNS configuration (verifying domain ownership). Now the instructions include the complete end-to-end process of configuring MX, SRV, TXT, and CNAME records.

Additional Information:
Administrators can access the new guides at the Help article Create DNS records for Office 365

back to top

August 2012

Office 365 Support for Shibboleth

Shibboleth (an implementation of SAML 2.0) integration with Office 365 is now supported. This provides IT admins with the ability to provide single sign-on experience to their Active Directory users by using Shibboleth Identity Provider as their Security Token Service (STS).

Additional Information:
For more details on this, please read this TechNet documentation

back to top

July 2012

User Soft Delete Functionality

Office 365 administrators now have the ability to recover deleted users from a simple list within 30 days after deletion. This is significant, because it means that scenarios such as the accidental deletion of a user or the re-hiring of an employee can be easily handled by your Office 365 administrator.

Additional Information:
To learn more, please read the community blog
For details on how to delete or restore users with a Microsoft Office 365 for Enterprises account, please read the article Delete or Restore Users

User Name Sync-to-SharePoint Online Improvement*

You may have seen extra characters showing before your name where it appears on various SharePoint Online sites (My Site, Team Sites, company portal, etc.); it often looks like this: i:0#f|membership. This user name sync improvement increases the likelihood of when a user's name will appear without extra characters.

*This update rolled out to customers over time. All customers received the update by the end of September 2012

Lync-to-phone*

Lync-to-phone users can make and receive phone calls to any number from their laptop or smart phone via a calling service which is purchased separately from a qualified partner. Jajah, a subsidiary of Telefonica, is the first available partner. More than just phone calls, Lync-to-phone provides a ‘single work number’ experience across the laptop, smartphone and tablet (via Lync clients on these devices). With Lync-to-phone, calls become an integrated component of a unified communication experience alongside instant message, presence, video calling and web conferencing.
*This update will initially be available to our US and UK customers only.

Additional Information:
To learn more, read the Help article Connect Lync Online to the telephone network
See here for a list of fully supported Lync-optimized PC peripherals like speakerphones or headsets

back to top

June 2012

Lync 2010 for iPad 1.5

The Lync 2010 for iPad mobile client has been updated to provide collaboration capabilities within Lync Meetings. This update enables Lync 2010 for iPad users to view uploaded Microsoft PowerPoint presentations within a scheduled Lync Meeting, view the meeting participants list, and receive notifications about other content types being shared within the meeting. This update is now available in the iTunes app store.

Additional Information:
For more information and to download Lync 2010 for iPad, please visit the iTunes Preview page Microsoft Lync 2010 for iPad
To learn more, please read the blog Lync for iPad - Version 1.5 is here!

Office 365 Global Availability: 46 New Countries

Office 365 is now commercially available in 46 new countries: Algeria, Argentina, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Belarus, Bulgaria, Croatia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Estonia, Guatemala, Iceland, Indonesia, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Macedonia, Malta, Montenegro, Morocco, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, UAE, Ukraine, Uruguay, and Venezuela.

Office 365 Global Availability: 11 New Languages

We have added language support for Bulgarian, Croatian, Estonian, Latvian, Lithuanian, Serbian (Latin), Slovak, Slovenian, Thai, Turkish, and Ukrainian.

Exchange Multi-Mailbox Search User Interface Now Supports 5,000 Mailbox Searches

We have increased the maximum mailbox search limit from 50 mailboxes to 5,000 mailboxes for both the multi-mailbox search user interface and the ”new-mailbox search” in PowerShell. The “search-mailbox” capability will continue without an upper limit for mailbox searches in Exchange Online.

Additional Information:
To learn more, please read the Help article Create a New Multi-Mailbox Search
To learn how to search a mailbox, please read the tutorial Using ‘search-mailbox’ in PowerShell

back to top

May 2012

FISMA granted to Office 365 Service

Office 365 has now been granted the Authority to Operate (ATO) under the Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA) by the Broadcasting Board of Governors, creating a process for federal agencies to certify and accredit the security of their information management systems.

Additional Information:
To learn more, please read the blog FISMA becomes latest security certification for Office 365

back to top

April 2012

No updates

back to top

March 2012

Office 365 Shared Mailboxes Tool

Shared mailboxes can now be created and configured using a new GUI-based Office 365 Shared Mailbox Tool by downloading the Office 365 Mailbox Tool, creating a security group and adding members, and running the tool to create and configure a shared mailbox. PowerShell was previously required to create and configure shared mailboxes.

Additional Information:
To learn more and download the tool, please read the article Create Shared Mailboxes with GUI-based Tool

Updated Exchange Deployment Assistant including the Hybrid Configuration Wizard

The Exchange Server Deployment Assistant (ExDeploy) has been updated to include support for configuring hybrid deployments with the Exchange 2010 SP2 Hybrid Configuration Wizard. This first scenario addition focuses on Exchange 2003 organizations deploying hybrid and includes new documentation, diagrams, checklists, and around 50 fewer manual steps.

Additional Information:
To learn more, please read the blog Exchange Server Deployment Assistant Update for Exchange 2010 SP2 and Office 365 Hybrid Deployments

Office Subscription multi-tenant language packs

Customers can now download free multi-language packs for their Office Subscription, making it easier for users to switch to their preferred languages for Office Subscription. They also reduce network overhead and user installation time. Look for the “Download Language Packs” link under Resources section on the Downloads page.

Office 365 Support for POP and IMAP Connections to Outlook 2003

Office 365 now supports POP and IMAP connections to Outlook 2003. However, please note that customers connecting to Outlook 2003 via POP or IMAP will experience the following limitations: no calendar support, no free/busy information, no Global Address List, no push email and when connecting via POP, all messages will be downloaded to the client, and there will be no synchronization between multiple computers or devices (such as between a laptop and a phone).

Additional Information:
For more information, please read the blog Office 365 will now support POP and IMAP Connections to Outlook 2003

Exchange ActiveSync (EAS) for mobile phones added to Exchange Online Kiosk plan

Exchange Online Kiosk users can now use any smartphone that supports Exchange ActiveSync, including Windows Phone, iPhone, Android phones, and Nokia phones (Symbian). However, users who want Exchange ActiveSync support on tablet devices, such as iPad or Android tablets, will need to upgrade to a SKU that includes Exchange Plan 1 or Exchange Plan 2. The price for Exchange Online Kiosk will remain unchanged.

Additional Information:
For more information, please read the blog Office 365: New Capabilities for Kiosk Workers
Compare Exchange ActiveSync clients here

Email storage for Exchange Online Kiosk plan increased from 500 MB to 1GB*

Due to lower storage costs, we have increased the mailbox limit for Exchange Online Kiosk plan users from 500 MB to 1 GB. The price for Exchange Online Kiosk will remain unchanged.
*This update will roll out to customers over the next several months. We expect that all customers will receive the update by June 2012.

Additional Information:
For more information, please read the blog Office 365: New Capabilities for Kiosk Workers

back to top

February 2012

Storage quota limit increase for Customers with more than 10,500 seats

Customers with more than 10,500 seats are now able to consume up to 25 TBs of data as opposed to the previous 5TB cap. This increase is equivalent to a tenancy with 55,000 seats.

SharePoint Online improved ability to recover SharePoint site collections

Enterprise customers now have the ability to restore full site collections with just a few clicks. This improvement to the SharePoint Online Administration Center is significant because it means accidental deletions can be easily restored.

Additional Information:
To learn more, please read the SharePoint blog SharePoint Online: Service Update
For details on how to restore site collections, please read the article Restore a deleted site collection

Increased enterprise directory synchronization for SharePoint Online

Microsoft has raised the directory synchronization limit in Office 365 to accommodate customers of any size, which means that large customers with many users can now provision the SharePoint Online service.

Additional Information:
To learn more, please read the SharePoint blog SharePoint Online: Service Update

Improved PDF support for SharePoint Online

PDF files can now be opened directly into Adobe Reader without first being downloaded to your PC. The PDF file remains connected and stored in your SharePoint Online document library as you view and edit the file.

Additional Information:
To learn more, please read the SharePoint blog SharePoint Online: Service Update
Reader version (10.1.2) is required for SharePoint Online PDF support. To download, please go to the Adobe Reader download page

External Sharing: invite by business email

External users can now use their business email address to authenticate when invited into a site collection. The Windows LiveID allows external users to associate their business email address (ex: user@contoso.com) to the LiveID system. Office 365 customers can invite their partners and clients to external sharing sites using their primary email account. If this email has been associated to the LiveID system, then the external user can sign in with their primary user name and password.

Additional Information:
To learn more, please read the SharePoint blog SharePoint Online: Service Update
To learn more about how to use external sharing, go here for Office 365 for enterprises or here for Office 365 for professionals and small businesses
To associate a business email user name to the Live ID system, start at https://idsignup.live.com/, select "Use existing email address" and fill in the easy creation steps

Rolling legal hold self-service configuration in PowerShell

Configuring rolling legal hold is now a self-service feature that can be configured through PowerShell. Previously, IT admins needed to submit a service ticket.

Additional Information:
To learn more about litigation hold, please read Put a Mailbox on Litigation Hold

back to top

January 2012

Lync Client-side Recording

Tenant admins can now enable or disable client recording. When enabled, users can record Microsoft Lync 2010 conversations or meetings, and capture the audio, video, instant messaging (IM), application sharing, Microsoft PowerPoint presentations, whiteboard, and polling portions of Lync 2010 sessions. Recordings can be saved in Windows Media Format, and played back just as they were experienced during the Lync conversation or meeting.

Lync Online Control Panel improvements

The Lync Online Control Panel now provides administrators with additional control over their Lync Online environment, including presence privacy mode, mobile phone notifications, and dial-in conferencing settings.

Additional Information:
To learn more, refer to the Help article Lync Online administration - what's new in this release
For more information, please read the blog Update to Lync Online Control Panel

SSAE 16 (Statements on Standards for Attestation Engagement) Type I Compliance

AICPA (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants) has replaced SAS70 with SSAE16.

Additional Information:
Visit the Trust Center now to learn more
Sign up for Compliance Notifications and receive email updates to help you to meet changing requirements

Microsoft Exchange PST Capture

PST Capture now helps users discover Outlook Personal Folder (.pst) File Format files and then import them into Exchange Server and Exchange Online. PST Capture helps an organization gain more control over their email data repositories by placing them into Exchange. With the option to install PST Capture Agents on target machines, administrators can now determine where .pst files are located and who their file owner is via the PST Capture Console. Then, they can be directly imported into the primary mailbox or associated archive mailbox.

Additional Information:
To learn more, read the blog post .PST, Time to Walk the Plank
To download Microsoft Exchange PST Capture, visit the Microsoft Download Center
For implementation details, read the TechNet article

Research In Motion BlackBerry Business Cloud Services (BBCS) for Microsoft Office 365

Research In Motion (RIM) is now hosting BlackBerry Business Cloud Services for Microsoft Office 365, which extends Microsoft Exchange Online to BlackBerry smartphones and allows self-managed BlackBerry deployments in the cloud. RIM BBCS offers powerful and flexible self-service administrative features to support an organization’s BlackBerry management strategy. It’s available at no additional charge to current medium-sized or enterprise subscribers of the Office 365 suite or standalone Exchange Online and works with BlackBerry smartphones on business or consumer data plans.

Additional Information:
To learn more, please visit RIM’s site Blackberry Business Cloud Services
To learn more, please read the RIM press release RIM Launches BlackBerry Business Cloud Services for Microsoft Office 365
To learn more, read the blog post Update on BlackBerry Business Cloud Services for Microsoft Office 365
For RIM BBCS-related questions, use the RIM Customer and Partner alias cloudservices@rim.com

RSS for the Service Health Dashboard

The new Service Health Dashboard RSS feed provides Office 365 administrators real-time access to information about service incidents and planned maintenance events. The RSS feed is updated anytime a new event is added or an existing event is updated. To subscribe to the RSS feed, go to the Admin page. Then in the left pane under Support, click Service Health. Next, click the RSS subscription link on the Service Health Dashboard.

Additional Information:
For information on how to access and use the Service Health Dashboard, please read the blog Keep an eye on everything with Service Health

Customer-level Status for the Service Health Dashboard

The accuracy of the data provided through the Service Health Dashboard has been improved. Information about Lync Online and Exchange Online published to the Service Health Dashboard now targets specific customers directly impacted by service incidents or events.

Additional Information:
To learn more, read the blog post The Office 365 Service Health Dashboard Now Supports Per-Tenant Service Status
For information on how to access and use the Service Health Dashboard, please read the blog Keep an eye on everything with Service Health

back to top

2011

December 2011

Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online

Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online service is now live on the OSDP platform in current Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online markets. As a result, customers and partners can now manage their Cloud users and Cloud billing within a single platform.

Additional Information:
To learn more, read the blog post CRM Integration with Office 365, Benefits and Installation
To learn more, watch the video CRM Online & Office 365
Hear from a joint customer on the value they received by using both solutions here
To purchase Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online, please go here for new customers or here for existing customers

Lync Mobile Clients

Microsoft has added Lync support for some mobile clients that deliver instant messaging, presence, single-touch audio conferencing and calling features across Windows Phone, iOS, Android and Nokia Symbian. Lync 2010 for Windows Phone is now available in the Windows Phone Marketplace, and Lync 2010 for Android is available now in the Android Market. Lync mobile clients for other platforms have been submitted to their respective mobile application marketplaces and should be available soon.

Additional Information:
Administrators can learn more about setup by reading the article Set up Lync mobile devices (for administrators)
Read the blog announcement Introducing Lync Mobile Clients
View the video announcement Lync 2010 Mobile Clients
To learn more about availability on your device please visit Mobile Clients for Microsoft Lync
Visit the Windows Phone Marketplace
Visit the Android Market

Lync Online Web Scheduler

A new browser-based tool for scheduling online meetings with proper access rights and roles is now available.

Additional Information:
Users can access the Lync Online Web Scheduler at https://sched.lync.com/
To learn more about using web scheduler please read the article Lync Online Web Scheduler

Updated Trust Center

Based on customer feedback, we have simplified the language of the Trust Center to make it easier to find in-depth information about our privacy and security practices and understand our practices for handling and securing data on Microsoft Online Services.

Additional Information:
To learn more please read the blog Trust but Verify
Visit the Trust Center

EU Model Clauses support for all EU customers

Office 365 is the first and only major cloud-based productivity service to contractually commit to the EU Model Clauses, a set of stringent data protection requirements for the European Union. We are also including additional requirements from individual EU member states in the Office 365 data processing agreement.

Additional Information:
Visit the Microsoft Online Services portal to get this agreement added to your Office 365 contract

HIPAA/BAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) requirements

Office 365 meets the business associate security requirements of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), a U.S. law that requires healthcare organizations to protect individually-identifiable health information. In addition, Microsoft will sign business associate agreements with customers with Enterprise Agreements.

Additional Information:
Visit the Trust Center

Exchange Hybrid Configuration Wizard

This new wizard helps streamline the hybrid deployment process by simplifying the configuration of Exchange Online features and services, including calendar and free/busy information sharing, mailbox moves, secure mail flow, and Exchange Online Archiving.

Additional Information:
To learn more, refer to the EHLO Blog Released: Exchange Server 2010 SP2
For more detail on the Exchange Hybrid Configuration Wizard, refer to the TechNet article What’s New in Exchange 2010 SP2

Exchange enhancements to email migrations

Two new enhancements to migration features will bring greater efficiency to email migrations.

  1. Enhanced Management Capabilities: The new Exchange Online migration dashboard helps to improve administrative efficiency during a cutover Exchange migration, a staged Exchange migration, or an IMAP migration. Tenant administrators can schedule multiple migration batches, obtain migration status information for migration batches, view per user details, and see skipped items. Improved reporting and diagnostics tools also improve the troubleshooting experience.
  2. Number of Concurrent Migrations: Administrators can now use Exchange Management Shell to increase the value for a migration batch to as high as 50.

Additional Information:
To learn more, refer to the EHLO Blog Exchange Online December 2011 Service Update
For more detail on email migrations, refer to the Help article E-Mail Migration Overview

Exchange enhancements to multi-mailbox search

Users can now launch a separate window to preview message hits and statistics for each query. Search performance has also been improved with reduced impact of retried query failures, as well as enhancements to scalability and availability.

Additional Information:
To learn more, refer to the EHLO Blog Exchange Online December 2011 Service Update
For more detail on multi-mailbox search, refer to the Help article Multi-Mailbox Searches

Exchange retention policy and tag management

We have improved the mailbox retention settings so it is easier to manage user mailboxes in an organization. Users can now use the mail control settings in Exchange Control Panel to create and manage retention tags and policies.

Additional Information:
To learn more, refer to the EHLO Blog Exchange Online December 2011 Service Update
For more detail on retention policies, refer to the Help article Set Up and Manage Retention Policies in Exchange Online

Exchange group naming policy

Administrators can now standardize and manage the names of distribution groups—also known as public groups—created by users in their organization. They can require that a specific prefix and suffix be added to names for distribution groups when created, and block specific words from being used. This feature helps to minimize the use of inappropriate words in group names.

Additional Information:
To learn more, refer to the EHLO Blog Exchange Online December 2011 Service Update
For more detail on setting up a group naming policy, refer to the Help article Create a Naming Policy for Distribution Groups

Exchange high availability architecture enhancements

We have extended the high availability architecture for Exchange Online across additional sites to provide greater resilience in the event of network failures. Administrators and end users may notice changes to server names in URLs and in protocol settings, although bookmarks for Outlook Web App should not be affected. The connection for client applications and devices, including those configured to connect directly to server addresses, will automatically redirect when the mailbox is migrated to the latest software. A very small percentage of mobile devices are not 100 percent compliant and may need to be reconfigured to connect to a changed pod address.

Additional Information:
Refer to the Help article Mobile Phone Setup Wizard for connection procedures
To learn more, refer to the post Exchange ActiveSync changes may affect a small number of users
To learn more, refer to the EHLO Blog Exchange Online December 2011 Service Update

Outlook Web App in Internet Explorer 9 App Mode

Outlook Web App can now be pinned to the task bar using Internet Explorer 9 App Mode. This feature gives users the ability to launch Outlook Web App with one click and run it with fewer distractions because it is separated from other browsing sessions. It also keeps users informed of incoming email and IM when minimized or hidden, and offers quick access to common Outlook Web App commands from the taskbar.

Additional Information:
To learn more, refer to the EHLO Blog Exchange Online December 2011 Service Update

Sender photos in Outlook Web App

Users can now match faces to names in their organization with photos displayed next to sender information in emails. The display of photos is enabled by default, but administrators can modify the settings of Outlook Web App mailbox policy to disable this feature.

Additional Information:
To learn more, refer to the EHLO Blog Exchange Online December 2011 Service Update
Administrators can refer to the Help article Control Sender Photo Settings in Outlook Web App
Users can refer the Help article Add or Change your Picture

User Name Self-Update for Admins

Admin users now have the ability to update their own alias after adding a domain. Previously, Admins required another Admin user to make this change or they needed to create one in the case of a single-user account. To complete this task, sign in to Office 365 and go to the user management experience. Select your username and click edit. In the edit experience, you can change your username from yourname@yourcompany.onmicrosoft.com to yourname@yourcompany.com. After you have clicked save, you will need to sign out and sign back in to complete the change.

Microsoft Online Services ID moniker changing to user ID

We have changed text in the product and in the sign-up pages from "Microsoft Online Services ID" (MOS ID) to "user ID" to reduce confusion around what the MOS ID is.

back to top

November 2011

Office 365 Global Expansion: 22 New Countries

Office 365 trials are available in 22 new countries: Argentina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Egypt, Estonia, Iceland, Indonesia, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Malta, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Taiwan, Turkey, Ukraine and UAE.

Office 365 Global Expansion: Russia and Korea

Previously only available through enterprise agreements or our syndication partners, Office 365 trials and commerce are now available directly from Microsoft in both Russia and Korea.

Admin self-serve password reset

Administrators now have the ability to reset their own password through text (SMS) message and an alternate email address. For the administrator password reset to work, you must have already provided a phone number on which you can receive a text (SMS) message and an alternate email address. The email address must be different than your Office 365 email address. (If you can’t sign in to your Office 365 account, you can’t retrieve email sent to that address.) If you haven’t entered this information already, navigate to the user management area by clicking Admin, and then under Management, clicking Users. On the Settings tab, enter the email address in the Alternate email address box. On the Properties tab, enter the mobile phone number in the Mobile phone box.

Additional Information:
Learn more about this feature by reading the blog post What was that password?
For enterprises, see Reset your administrator password
For professionals and small businesses, see Reset your administrator password

Source of authority transfer

This update allows Office 365 administrators to deactivate and reactivate dirsync to switch between managing their users’ master source of information on-premises or in the cloud. Previously, when customers used the Office 365 migration wizard to activate dirsync to synchronize user data with the cloud, they could not revert to managing user data with on-premises Active Directory without calling support.

Additional Information:
Learn more about changing the source of authority by reading the article Directory synchronization and source of authority

Lync client for Mac

Customers who own Office for Mac 2011 Standard and have usage rights for Lync for Mac 2011 can now have the ability to download Lync for Mac from the download section of Office 365. Lync for Mac 2011 enables Mac users to see their colleagues’ online presence while working in Outlook or collaborating on Office documents. It also enables them to quickly send an instant message, start a video chat, or schedule an Online Meeting from within Outlook for Mac 2011.

Additional Information:
Learn more about Lync for Mac licensing here
See the blog post Mac Users: Download Lync for Mac 2011 Today

Mac unified downloads page

A unified downloads page is now available to give Mac users a single location to download Office for Mac desktop setup configuration software and Lync for Mac 2011. To get these downloads, log into your Office 365 account and visit the download section.

Additional Information:
To learn more about how to set up your Mac for Office 365, see Set up your Mac for Office 365 for professionals and small businesses or Set up your Mac for Office 365 for enterprises

Official support for OS X Lion added

We have added to Office 365 official support for the OS X Lion operating system.

Improvements to the “Add a Domain” experience

We have improved the Add a Domain user experience by clarifying the domain re-delegation process and providing in-context links to relevant Help articles.

Additional Information:
To learn more about adding your domain to Office 365, see Add your domain to Office 365—Office 365 for enterprises or Add your domain to Office 365—Office 365 for professionals and small businesses

Client access control improvements

We have improved client access controls so that Office 365 administrators can block external access to Office 365 based on the IP address of the external client. This action blocks all external access to Office 365 except Exchange Active Sync; all other clients such as Outlook are blocked. It also blocks all external access to Office 365 except for passive browser based applications, such as Outlook Web Access or SharePoint Online.

Additional Information:
Read the Microsoft TechNet article here
Read the support help article here
For more information about AD FS 2.0 RTW, see: General information about AD FS 2.0 RTW

Directory Synchronization tool 64-bit support

The 64-bit version of the directory synchronization tool is now available for our enterprise customers. In addition, the 64-bit version now uses Forefront Identity Manager (FIM) 2010 as the underlying synchronization engine, which is installed silently when you run Setup. The 64-bit version of the directory synchronization tool shares the same functionality with the existing 32-bit software, the only exception being that Multi-forest Active Directory is not supported. Refer to the existing directory synchronization documentation for all other deployment and configuration information.

Additional Information:
More details, including the upgrade path from the 32-bit version, can be found in the article Directory Synchronization tool 64-bit support
View additional directory synchronization information here

Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Troubleshooting support tool

The new Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Troubleshooting support tool is a comprehensive, self-help solution that helps customers solve questions or issues they may have with the Office 365 suite of services. The Troubleshooter pinpoints key technical support issues and provides immediate solutions so customers do not have to post questions to the community or submit a support request ticket. It features hundreds of possible help and support Office 365 assets (i.e., help topics, articles, videos, wikis, blog posts, etc.). As you move through a list of troubleshooting options, the tool dynamically displays funneled-down content to lead you towards the answers you need. This free tool is available in the "Troubleshooting" section of http://community.office365.com/.

Additional Information:
Read the blog announcement Support Made Simple
Use the DIY Troubleshooting Tool now

SharePoint Online access for external users via a Windows Live ID

Microsoft is helping to support the many scenarios in which you work with others, particularly those who are not part of your company, such as vendors, trusted business partners, customers, and clients. Windows LiveID now adds external sharing capabilities in SharePoint Online so companies can invite external users in to view, share, and collaborate on their sites. The feature is turned off by default, but a company’s SharePoint Online Administrator can enable external sharing for the whole company. Then each individual site collection owners can decide if they wish to share externally. Every Office 365 SharePoint Online customer at the tenant level, (not per subscription) includes 50 Partner Access Licenses (PALs) that can be used for external sharing. Customers are not currently required to obtain additional PALs for external sharing beyond 50 users and can have up to a maximum of 1,000 PALs until the next major update of the Office 365 service at which time Microsoft may choose to make it available as a paid add-on.
Note: Microsoft supports invited external users signing in to the service using a Microsoft Online Services ID and/or a Windows Live ID, which includes @Live.com, @Hotmail.com and @MSN.com user names, plus regional derivations of LiveID user names.

Additional Information:
To learn more, please read Share a Site with External Users for midsize businesses and enterprises or Share the Team Site with External Users for professionals and small businesses
To learn more about all the November SharePoint Online updates, read the blog post What’s New in SharePoint Online: November 2011 Update

SharePoint Online addition of Business Connectivity Services (BCS) via WCF endpoint

Business Connectivity Services (BCS) in SharePoint Online enables customers to connect to external data sources via Windows Communication Foundation (WCF) Web Services endpoints in both read and write modes. These datasources are often line-of-business (LoB) applications that sit behind customer firewalls, or are being transitioned to the cloud, like SQL Azure. SharePoint now supports external lists and data columns, the Business Data Catalogue (BDC) service for WCF connectors and the Secure Store Service partitioned at the customer SharePoint Online Administration Center (at the tenant level). Currently, there are some components of BCS that are not supported, including external data search, rich client integration, profile pages, and direct connectivity to SQL Azure without a WCF endpoint.

Additional Information:
To learn more, read Introduction to Business Connectivity Services in SharePoint Online or What's New for BCS in SharePoint Online
For all the new rich documentation on BCS within SharePoint Online, please visit the SharePoint Online Developer Resource Center
To learn more about all the November SharePoint Online updates, read the blog post What’s New in SharePoint Online: November 2011 Update

SharePoint Online improved ability to recover SharePoint site

Enterprise customers can now restore entire sub sites. As a result, they no longer need to contact Office 365 support to request restoration.

Additional Information:
To learn more about all the November SharePoint Online updates, read the blog post What’s New in SharePoint Online: November 2011 Update

SharePoint Online support for IE 9 and Chrome

In addition to earlier versions of Internet Explorer and Firefox, SharePoint Online now officially supports Internet Explorer 9 and Chrome. Just launch your favorite browser and then visit your favorite SharePoint Online team site or intranet company site, use work with the Office Web Apps, and more.

Office 365 Global Expansion: Brazil

Office 365 trials and commerce are available in Brazil as of November 8, 2011.

Office 365 Global Expansion: New language support

We have added new language support for Portuguese-Portuguese.

back to top

October 2011

RIM BlackBerry Business Cloud Services open beta

RIM has recently announced an open beta of

BlackBerry® Business Cloud Services for Microsoft Office 365. Available at no additional charge to Microsoft Office 365 Enterprise Plan subscribers, this secure service is hosted by Research In Motion® (RIM), and directly links Microsoft® Exchange® Online with BlackBerry smartphones to offer reliable, mobile access to synchronized email, calendar, contacts, tasks, and memo pads. The intuitive, web-based interface provides the tools administrators need to perform common tasks, reset passwords, or to find, lock, or wipe lost or misplaced devices. In addition, an integrated single sign-on between Office 365 and BlackBerry Business Cloud Services gives end users online self-service options that help make managing devices more efficient than ever.

Additional Information:
Read the announcement RIM announced an open beta of BlackBerry® Business Cloud Services for Microsoft Office 365
Further information can be found in the BlackBerry Business Cloud Services–Feature and Technical Overview
Learn more about the open beta program requirements and logistical details by visiting the RIM BlackBerry Beta Zone at https://www.blackberry.com/beta/businesscloud
More information is available at www.blackberry.com/cloudservices
Read Documentation for Administrators

Exchange Online Enhancements to Connected Accounts

Users with Connected Accounts can currently synchronize their mailboxes in Outlook Web App (OWA) by simply clicking the refresh button. During an active OWA session, the frequency with which a mailbox syncs has been increased. Additionally, user mailboxes will automatically sync when they log into OWA.

Additional Information:
To learn more please read the blog announcement New Sync Capabilities for Connected Accounts

Office Web Apps Improvements

We are pleased to share with you many improvements to Microsoft’s popular Office Web Apps, including:

  • ODF support: View and edit ODF 1.1 documents in Office Web Apps
  • New Browser support: Use Office Web Apps with Chrome and IE9 in native mode
  • Print from editor: Print Word document from edit mode, in addition to view mode
  • Excel Support: Insert charts from within Excel Web App
  • Copy and Paste in Excel: Copy and paste values and formulas by dragging the fill handle
  • Additional Print Capabilities: Print presentations directly from PowerPoint Web App
  • Edit text in more shapes: Edit text in more shapes instead of only placeholder shapes
  • Enhanced theme options: Pick a presentation theme when creating a new document
  • Clip-art support: Insert clip art from within PowerPoint Web App

Additional Information:
To learn more, read the post Setting the pace in cloud productivity

Outlook Web App attachment preview with Office Web Apps Improvements

Outlook Web App now integrates Office Web Apps into the attachment previewing experience for Microsoft Word documents, Microsoft Excel® spreadsheets, and Microsoft PowerPoint® presentations. When Office Web App attachment preview is enabled, users see an Open in Browser link next to the Office Web App document type in Outlook Web App. By clicking on the link, the user can open the attached document using the Office Web Apps to get a high-fidelity preview of the Office document in a browser window.

Additional Information:
Read the blog posting Office Web Apps
Read more about this feature on EHLO (The Exchange Team Blog)

back to top

June through September 2011

SharePoint Online ability to connect to lists and document libraries with the Windows Phone 7.5 “Mango” update

Windows Phone 7.5, codenamed “Mango,” now enables both small business and enterprise Office 365 customers to access SharePoint Online lists and document libraries from their Windows Phone.

Additional Information:
View this video to see how easy it is to connect your WP7.5 to your Office 365 services

Office 365 Global Expansion: Chile

Office 365 trials and commerce are available in Chile as of September, 7 2011.

Office 365 Global Availability

Office 365 is initially available in 38 countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Romania, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Trinidad & Tobago, United States, and UK.

back to top

8 out of 8 people found this post helpful.

Sort by: Published Date | Most Recent | Most Useful
Comments

    please add the Year after the month heading. It is difficult to know when something was actually implemented when I have scrolled far down the page. Thanks

  • Regarding the Lync Online certificate update today (May 2013) - if we're using Lync Online, what servers are you wanting us to update certs on?

    I think someone needs to reread that update and make sure that it makes sense to end users and IT pros.  We don't have Lync servers... that's the whole reason to go to Lync Online.

  • What is "Standalone Rights Management Services"?

    Does this mean E1 customer can use AADRM?

  • Please add some info about the change to the Help system and  the change from SkyDrive to OneDrive?

  • How come there is not any info about the addition of Power BI?

Page 1 of 1 (5 items)