Getting familiar with Office 365

Your browser does not support video. Install Microsoft Silverlight, Adobe Flash Player, or Internet Explorer 9.

Develop your talent with more than 10,000 online courses from LinkedIn Learning

Office 365, a term that makes you think of office applications, and 365 days a year. Available all the time. A term that's almost synonymous with cloud-based solutions these days. While Office 365 is Microsoft's cloud-based solution for email access, document sharing, and communication services. The Office 365 portal is where a user would end up accessing all of his applications in their online version, or even download an offline version of those same applications for offline use.

In this course, we're going to discuss a lot of the back-end infrastructure for Office 365. Let's take a quick look at what a user encounters when he goes into an Office 365 portal. So, if I login with the user name Jane Kane, Jane Kane has an email address and a domain name, When Jane logs in to the Office 365 portal, she has access to all of the Office applications, can download those applications, or access the online versions.

She can access the Outlook web app. Outlook web app is an evolution of what many of you may know as evolved into and is part of those suite of products that make up Office 365. From here, Jane can accept meeting requests, can send emails, can view all of the information that she would in her email, and manage that email information. From Outlook web app, Jane can access her email just like she would from the Outlook offline client.

From this application, she can also use Lync, and actually communicate with other users and manage her availability status. From the Office 365 portal, Jane can access OneDrive for Business, which is a storage location for her personal files that are stored on SharePoint Online. She can also access the SharePoint sites. Now by using the SharePoint sites, she can share documents with other users that work within the organization, or manage a public site, that would be used by users outside of her organization.

So we've got Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, and Lync Online; the three primary services of Office 365. In the background behind those services, what gives you the ability to have a secured authentication mechanism to Office 365 is Microsoft Azure Active Directory Services? The magic of Office 365 and the cloud, is that those services don't need to be managed. They work completely in the background as a back-end infrastructure. I've demonstrated some of those end-user functionalities and that end-user experience.

This is not something we'll focus on too much in the course because we'll focus on the back-end infrastructure. I will sometimes demonstrate how the client connects to Office 365, but we really put in place the back-end infrastructure for those clients to connect. And all the management of those client connections will take place from the Office 365 Admin Center and three other admin centers that are related to Exchange, SharePoint, and Lync. Before we dive into the Microsoft 365 admin center, I want to clear out some terminology.

There's a few terms I'll be using throughout the course that I want to make sure are clear for you. The first is a subscription. The Office 365 subscription is a term that we use to define what you're actually purchasing from Microsoft to create this environment in the cloud for you. So your Office 365 subscription is the definition of your environment in the Microsoft Cloud. You assign your licenses, the number of licenses, and the type of licenses for Office 365 within that subscription.

There's enterprise-level subscription, mid-sized business subscription, subscriptions that are related to educational institutions or even end users. Choosing the right subscription for you is going to be very important in ensuring that you have the appropriate services for Office 365. The Office 365 tenant is where all of your data is stored and all of your configurations are stored. So unlike the subscription which is really your registration information, the tenant is your data content in Office 365.

Within the configurations of Office 365 we'll sometimes refer to your tenant as your company or your organization. The SLA or the Service Level Agreement. The Service Level Agreement is the agreement between you and Microsoft as to the availability of the Office 365 services. Office 365 services are designed to be available constantly. Constant availability means that you can rely on the Office 365 cloud to provide the Exchange, Lync, and SharePoint services that you need.

The way that Service Level Agreements are calculated is by percentage of up time. The guaranteed percentage of up time for Office 365 depends on the subscription that you have. The most common SLA or Service Level Agreement up time percentage is 99.9% of the time. If availability falls below that threshold of 99.9%, Microsoft will provide remuneration to the customers that have suffered service degradation or unavailable service that falls below that threshold.

The amount of remuneration is defined by how low the availability has fallen to. And there are documents on the Microsoft website that will provide additional details as to how much an organization will be refunded if the availability up time falls below that required threshold. Now, let's take a look at the Microsoft 365 admin center.

LinkedIn Learning

LinkedIn Learning is an online learning platform that combines industry-leading content from with LinkedIn’s professional network of more than 500 million member profiles to provide highly personalized course recommendations and a more intuitive learning experience. Learn more.


  • Learn from recognized industry experts, and get the business, tech, and creative skills that are most in demand.

  • Receive personal recommendations based on your LinkedIn profile.

  • Stream courses from your computer or mobile device.

  • Take courses for every level – beginner to advanced.

  • Practice while you learn with quizzes, exercise files, and coding windows.

  • Provide learning for your team or entire organization, with an easy to use experience for managing users, curating content and measuring engagement

For businesses with 150+ licenses Request Office 365 onboarding assistance from FastTrack

You can request remote and personalized assistance with onboarding. Our FastTrack engineers will help you plan your Office 365 project, assess your technical environment, provide remediation guidance, and provide user adoption assistance. For businesses with at least 500 licenses, Microsoft also provides personalized assistance to migrate data to Office 365.

See the FastTrack Center Video:

Get started today:

Tip: Businesses with 1-149 licenses still have access to FastTrack guidance via links in the Admin Center and also available at

Discover how to efficiently manage your organization's implementation of Office 365, including global subscription settings, Exchange mailboxes, and SharePoint and Skype for Business services. In this course, David Elfassy looks at Office 365 from the perspective of an IT professional, showing how to implement enterprise-level services, no matter the size of your business. David helps you understand your service-level agreement, set up email domains, and configure policies and multifactor authentication. He also dives into advanced Office 365 configurations, including how to implement multifactor authentication, troubleshoot with admin center tools, and more.

Topics include:

  • Managing global subscription settings, domain names, and user settings

  • Managing Exchange user mailboxes

  • Implementing Exchange distribution and security groups

  • Using a message trace

  • Implementing Exchange rules

  • Managing SharePoint compliance settings

  • Managing Skype for Business settings

  • Using remote PowerShell to manage Office 365

Expand your Office skills
Explore training
Get new features first
Join Office Insiders

Was this information helpful?

Thank you for your feedback!

Thank you for your feedback! It sounds like it might be helpful to connect you to one of our Office support agents.