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Does Teams require Exchange Online to use, like Office Groups?

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Hi Teams folks -- Logistical question: due to Teams' connection/integration with Office 365 Groups, am I correct in assuming that you cannot use this tool without being on Exchange Online? (This is the limitation of adopting Groups/Planner: users must have an online mailbox.)

 

In my case, my company has moved to SharePoint Online (O365 E5 plan for whole company) and planned to use Groups/Planner, but we're not on Exchange Online yet and won't be for months or more; not a license issue, it's an upgrade/time/commitment issue. We're not prepared to provide online mailboxes as a workaround, either.

 

So we were pretty disappointed to discover we can't use Groups/Planner yet. Is that the same for Teams?

 

 

cc: @Dan Holme

13 Replies
Users' Exchange mailboxes can be hosted online or on-premises. Users with Exchange mailboxes on-premises will not be able to configure connectors, but can still receive messages from connectors configured by other users. Please see our FAQ for more information. https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Frequently-asked-questions-about-Microsoft-Teams-%25E2%2580...

 Hi Matt, we haven't moved to Exchange Online but recently found some apps, like Planner will still create an O365 Group if you have your tenant connected to Azure AD (even though you don't have EO enabled).  You can still use Planner and create Plans and tasks, get a SP Site etc, if you aren't on EO.

Hi Matt, for the full Microsoft Teams experience, every user should be enabled for Exchange Online and SharePoint Online. • Users’ Exchange mailboxes can be hosted online or on-premises. • Users with Exchange mailboxes on-premises will not be able to configure connectors, but can still receive messages from connectors configured by other users.

Thanks @Elaine Ansell, do you have any sources or "here's what you need to do to make this work" links that I can forward to my team? Some formal documentation on this issue would be helpful and I'm having trouble finding anything official.

Hi Matt,

We have a FAQ for that topic which you can find on this Admin support page.  Here is the answer copied here for your convenience:

 

What are the technical requirements for Microsoft Teams? How does Exchange hosting change what users can do in Teams?

For the full Microsoft Teams experience, every user should be enabled for Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, and Office 365 Group creation. Users' Exchange mailboxes can be hosted online or on-premises. Users hosted on Exchange Online or Exchange Dedicated vNext can use all the features of Microsoft Teams. They can create and join teams and channels, create and view meetings, modify user profile pictures, add and configure connectors, tabs, and bots, and they can chat and call.

Users hosted on Exchange Online Dedicated – Legacy or Exchange on-premises must be synchronized to Azure Active Directory for Office 365. They can create and join teams and channels, add and configure tabs and bots, and chat and call. However, they can’t modify user profile pictures, create and view meetings, or add and configure connectors. They can receive messages from connectors configured by other users.

The following table provides information for users with Exchange Online hosted in various environments.

 

Actions supported:

User's mailbox is hosted in:

Create teams

Join teams

Create channels

Create and view meetings

Modify user profile picture

Add and configure connectors

Add and configure tabs

Add and configure bots

Exchange Online

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Exchange Online Dedicated vNext

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Exchange Online Dedicated – Legacy (Sync to Azure AD required)

Yes

Yes

Yes

No

No

No

Yes

Yes

Exchange on-premises (Sync to Azure AD required)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes*

No

No

Yes

Yes

*Exchange 2016 CU3 and above supported

Additional information:

  • SharePoint Online is required to share and store files in team conversations.

  • OneDrive for Business is required to share and store files in private chats.

  • If users aren't assigned and enabled with SharePoint Online licenses, they don't have OneDrive for Business storage in Office 365. File sharing will continue to work in Channels, but users are unable to share files in Chats without OneDrive for Business storage in Office 365.

  • Microsoft Teams doesn't support SharePoint on-premises.

  • Users must be enabled for Office 365Group creation in order to create teams in Microsoft Teams.

Tip: For information about how to use Azure AD Connect to synchronize with Azure Active Directory, see Integrating your on-premises identities with Azure Active Directory.

 

For other questions, we have many other topics listed on our Teasm support page, including the full Admin FAQ: https://support.office.com/en-us/teams

To clarify a point, it states full funcationality requires and exchange license, however, what if users do not have an exchange account assigned to them?  Are they able to login to Teams?  We will be adding users to our tenant to provide some O365 functionality and then at a later date will be migrating their mailbox into our tenant.


Teams does not require an Exchange Online license in order to access; the only limitation is the inability to have an email associated with that team, which is not a requirement since you won't be enabling email until later. One of the main points of using MS Teams is the fact that conversations are via chat ... no mailbox required. There are several connectors that function without a mailbox as well. We have active, functioning MS Teams without Exchange Online.
Actually, as far as I know since originally posting this question, you do in fact have to have at least an Exchange Online mailbox per user. Teams are Office 365 Groups and Group members require 1) a SharePoint Online license and 2) an Exchange Online mailbox. Also, a Team, as an Office 365 Group, gets a shared mailbox and calendar. More details: icsh.pt/O365groups

So, there's a fine line here in your response. The Group/Team requires, and is provisioned, an Exchange Online mailbox.

That is the mailbox that is used to store the Group conversations and the Teams conversations. 

It is OK for the Users to Not have an Exchange Online mailbox. (i.e. they could have an Exchange Server (on-premises) mailbox). 

Users can still participate as Team members, but without an Exchange Online mailbox, the big missing items are 1. Meetings integration, and 2. User profile pics 

Good to know. I thought functionality was basically ceased without the EO mailbox per user. (You're right about the fine line; I was adding the Group mailbox/calendar as extra info not fully pertinent to the question.) So if you get basically everything in Teams except photos (b/c for whatever reason, EO is necessary to push AAD photos [eyeroll]) and meetings, that can definitely still meet a collaboration need.

Confirming, though, a SharePoint Online license is still required, right? I guess maybe not "required", but you're not gonna be able to do anything file-related without it..?

Yes, that's true. SPO needs to be "assigned" to the user in order for the user to access items in the Files tab. Come to think of it, I actually haven't tested that, so will add that to the queue. 

But the question isn't really about whether or not users have purchased the licenses - the only way to get Teams is through a SKU that includes these other licenses. I think that if an admin turned "off" SPO for a specific user, but kept Teams turned "on", that would be a recipe for frustration.

Agreed. The issue I had at the time was the unpleasant surprise that after my team migrated the company from SP2013 to SPO, we didn't get access to Office 365 Groups (at the time, it was just Outlook Groups). It was very poorly documented that to take advantage of it, there was an EO component required and the Exchange team wasn't ready to do any migrations to EO nor did they have time to figure out the what EO aspects they needed to enable/license/what have you. I was asking about Teams because we were looking into its use, but didn't want to get bit again by the Outlook Groups/EO requirements which we still hadn't recovered from.

Better documentation has come about thankfully, but at the time it was crickets on the EO requirement.

Dear ,

 

we don't have both MS Exchange and Office365 .We have only Google Email Account.

 

are we able to login and Can we use Microsoft Team via Google Email Email ?

if can use , what feature we will miss till we are under google mail. 

 

Thanks in advance.