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I am presently freelancing again (call me on +447989381331) if you need an experienced Project Manager) and I am tidying up my own IT system.

I strongly believe that Office 365 is the future of IT for all sizes of business. It is still very painful at the bleeding edge but core activities such as Exchange, OneDrive and SharePoint work very well now.

For this reason I have migrated my own business TrianglePM to Office 365 Business Premium. This is the recommended package for businesses under 300 employees and if I need value added features such as Email Archiving I can simply buy add-on licences. Once I have bought several add-ons it will become more economic to upgrade to the E3 plan.

My domain is hosted (purchased from) AWS but when I set up TrianglePM.org on Office 365 I moved my DNS management (name servers) to Microsoft. This is because Microsoft needs to add DNS records for mail, Skype etc.

Website

My website trianglepm.org is hosted by the excellent TigerTech. It was simple to add a CNAME to point http://www.trianglepm.org to their servers. Unfortunately it is difficult to point the zone apex “trianglepm.org” to TigerTech servers. The challenge and solutions are described here. I simply put in a A record pointing to the TigerTech server and I hope I notice when it is moved.

Mail and Licencing

I don’t want to spend more on licences than I have to. My Global Admin identity has no licences and no mailbox. My day-to-day user has Office 365 Business Premium and my ancillary email address has only an Exchange Mailbox (£3/month).

The benefits of having an Exchange Mailbox for my ancillary user includes having full calendar and mobile phone support.

Small business users like myself don’t want to buy different mailboxes for Sales, Support and Info etc. This can be avoided by having all addresses delivered to a single mailbox and then using mail rules to put them into folders. Unfortunately by default Exchange bounces any emails to unknown recipients.

To create a catch all address for *@mydomain.com you must create a mail transport rule. The instructions for this are here.

and although the admin UI seems to change quite regularly once you have found the options it does actually work.

Summary

The migration has been painless and although the DNS management and Exchange interfaces were unfamiliar they worked well. I am looking forwards to testing how effective SharePoint is when working with my clients as External Users.

 

 

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