Yesterday, I shared a resource from Microsoft that allows you to test the upgrade and migration process to Windows 10.
Today we shift gears over to a similar resource but this one is for Office 365. Instead of using a virtual machine environment it takes advantage of the free Microsoft Azure trial and lets you build a testing environment by creating a small intranet on Azure.
This virtual intranet, once you get it setup using the guide, will give you a Windows Server domain, a general application server. a client machine to work with and a free 30 day trial of Office 365 E5.
The result is an environment that will let you poke around various Office 365 features and should provide a solid introduction to these skills according to Microsoft:
- Gain skills and experience in configuration and deployment
- Create demos for your departments or customers
- Test a complex configuration prior to implementing it in production
- Install and test an Office 365 application running on APP1
Note: Microsoft plans to expand this environment in the near future so you can also use Azure AD Connect for DirSync with password sync to your Office 365 trial subscription.
The entire setup listed in the test lab guide for this is accomplished in three phases:
- Create the base configuration in Azure (the DC1, APP1, and CLIENT1 virtual machines in an Azure virtual network)
- Create and configure an Office 365 E5 trial subscription
- Configure your Office 365 subscription with additional user accounts and team sites (optional)
As a new Office 365 administrator myself I learned how to manage users on our live portal. While I did not cause any major complications I did all of my experimentation before we planned to roll out the accounts to users so there was no concern about data loss or service disruption.
That gave me a lot of flexibility but Microsoft understands that is not the most effective way to learn about managing an Office 365 subscription so this test lab guide can help out with that and learning other features tied to Office 365.
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