While looking for governance tools and options for Office 365, I found this toolkit – currently in beta at the time of writing this post – by Acceleratio

http://acceleratio.net/products/governance-toolkit-for-office-365

The idea is to provide a simpler way to manage and monitor activities on Office 365 services (Exchange, Lync or SharePoint) by Office 365 administrators.

The good news is it’s working also for tenant still in Wave 14 (2010 products version) – even if you can get some errors for features specific to Wave 15.

Installation

The first thing is to download the toolkit from the Acceleratio website.

The setup process is very straight forward, just follow the wizard to accept the licence and define who can use it (everyone or only you – the current account).

At the first launch, you will be asked to Buy, Activate or Try – be care as this is a modal window, meaning this will be upfront of all other window; I really don’t like it.

For this post, I choose Try, this allows you to evaluate the product for 30 days before is stop working

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The first task is to create a database – as this is a new install; next launch will reuse this database

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Then you will be asked for a SQL server/instance to use for hosting the database; this doesn’t come with SQL Express. I think this should be an option: propose to use an existing SQL instance or use SQL Express and then use this

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Then you have to configure the Office 365 tenant(s); you can add multiple tenants – this will be very helpful for partners which has to manage Office 365 tenants for their customers, or for customers with multiple tenants. You just have to click on the Add Tenant button and enter an Office 365 administrative account. In evaluation mode, you can only add one tenant.

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If it successes to connect, the tool will display the tenant name (company name usually) and the tenant address

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You can configure the toolkit to run as a service

After creating the database and setting up some settings, you are done

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Use of the toolkit

The first thing to do is to load your Office 365 tenant settings; this consist to request your Office 365 tenant all information from company details to users and group, or licenses, SharePoint site collections or mailboxes even SSO and protection settings. This load is done by hitting the Load Office 365 Tenant Settings button

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After loading the settings, you get a global view of your tenant

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Then you can browse all your tenant settings to get it in a clear and simple view, generates usage report and check permission (especially for SharePoint)

Office 365 Explorer

This feature provides a global view of your Office 365 settings and services; this is the main view you get after loading your Office 365 settings

You can get your Company details, Partners details (in case of your tenant is delegated to a partner, all the internet domains associated and password policy

These views are very helpful to ensure constituency in case of you have multiple domains and ensure appropriate service and authentication method are in place

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Then you can check your user accounts, groups and license/subscription – covering also all administrators

Once again this is a very helpful view as this is always complicated from the Office 365 administration portal to get this useful views – such as who is administrator or who is not licensed

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Exchange Views

The second section is related to Exchange Online services

This provides you a global view of all of your Exchange Online services, including UM or compliance – some features here are Wave 15 specific so you may not get details if your tenant is still running on Exchange Online 2010

One of the useful view is the Mailbox Delegation

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SharePoint Views

The third section is related to SharePoint site collections

From there you will get a global view of all SharePoint site collections and their settings and quotas; this is useful to be proactive for not reaching quotas limits and check if external sharing is enabled or not

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SharePoint Reports

The reports section is just below the Office 365 Explorer

This section is fully related to SharePoint (at least for the current product version)

This provides you interesting reports such as permission very helpful to ensure your data is accessible to only authorized people

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My Opinion

This product is providing a very good overview of your Office 365 settings; this is very helpful for Office 365 administrators (global or Exchange/SharePoint) and may help to troubleshoot authentication or authorization issues.

The only “bad” point is the trial version is not providing a full product feature.