Chris is a Senior Software Engineer at ThreeWill. His area of focus is consulting in the development of Microsoft .NET and SharePoint technologies. His primary role has been development lead in recent projects. Project roles have ranged from Development/Technical Lead to Development Resource.
Microsoft 365 Tenants – Single Tenant vs Multi-Tenant vs Dedicated
Here are some of the options, along with respective pros & cons:
- Retain domain-specific email addresses [example: email@example.com]
- Lowest complexity
- Lowest cost
- Some data regionalization
- Loss of functionality across tenants
- Harder to govern/manage across tenants
- Cross-tenant users are external (yuck!)
- Retain domain-specific email addresses (example: firstname.lastname@example.org)
- White glove service (support severity levels)
- Multi-tenant feature parity
Single Tenant seems to be the overall best choice, unless you HAVE to have data regionalization. This may be the case for some large organizations that require their data to remain in the country of origin/use.
As mentioned earlier, it is also possible to have a hybrid implementation where some things remain on-premises and some are in Microsoft 365. There are hybrid options for Exchange, Lync, and SharePoint.
SharePoint is a web application platform in the Microsoft Office server suite. Launched in 2001, SharePoint combines various functions which are traditionally separate applications: intranet, extranet, content management, document management, personal cloud, enterprise social networking, enterprise search, business intelligence, workflow management, web content management, and an enterprise application store. SharePoint servers have traditionally been deployed for internal use in mid-size businesses and large departments alongside Microsoft Exchange, Skype for Business, and Office Web Apps; but Microsoft’s ‘Microsoft 365’ software as a service offering (which includes a version of SharePoint) has led to increased usage of SharePoint in smaller organizations.
While Microsoft 365 provides SharePoint as a service, installing SharePoint on premises typically requires multiple virtual machines, at least two separate physical servers, and is a somewhat significant installation and configuration effort. The software is based on an n-tier service oriented architecture. Enterprise application software (for example, email servers, ERP, BI and CRM products) often either requires or integrates with elements of SharePoint. As an application platform, SharePoint provides central management, governance, and security controls. The SharePoint platform manages Internet Information Services (IIS) via form-based management tooling.
Since the release of SharePoint 2013, Microsoft’s primary channel for distribution of SharePoint has been Microsoft 365, where the product is continuously being upgraded. New versions are released every few years, and represent a supported snapshot of the cloud software. Microsoft currently has three tiers of pricing for SharePoint 2013, including a free version (whose future is currently uncertain). SharePoint 2013 is also resold through a cloud model by many third-party vendors. The next on-premises release is SharePoint 2016, expected to have increased hybrid cloud integration.
Microsoft 365 is the brand name used by Microsoft for a group of software plus services subscriptions that provides productivity software and related services to its subscribers. For consumers, the service allows the use of Microsoft Office apps on Windows and OS X, provides storage space on Microsoft’s cloud storage service OneDrive, and grants 60 Skype minutes per month. For business and enterprise users, Microsoft 365 offers plans including e-mail and social networking services through hosted versions of Exchange Server, Skype for Business Server, SharePoint and Office Online, integration with Yammer, as well as access to the Office software.
After a beta test that began in October 2010, Microsoft 365 was launched on June 28, 2011, as a successor to Microsoft Business Productivity Online Suite (MSBPOS), originally aimed at corporate users. With the release of Microsoft Office 2013, Microsoft 365 was expanded to include new plans aimed at different types of businesses, along with new plans aimed at general consumers wanting to use the Office desktop software on a subscription basis—with an emphasis on the rolling release model.