Hello from the Office 365 Groups Engineering Team


Hi everyone!  I am the Group Engineering Manager for O365 groups.  I will be encouraging more of my engineers to participate in this forum  to help answer questions and share solutions.  


Let the fun begin!

60 Replies
Fabulous.... The first like I get is from my EM @Ladislau Conceicao. :) BTW - He owns Guest Access, Shared Mailboxes and knows everything about Public Folders so please pester him. :)
Hi Jim, is there any news or schedule about when we will see expiry for groups, and how it will work. As we are adopting groups at a rapid place we really need to start planning for the disposition plans.

Expiry for groups is in planning. It's one several things that we are currently working on for Groups Lifecycle management.


@Eric Zenz if he wants to add more specifics.

Short term, we're releasing group activity reports in the Report center so you can do some self-directed pruning of obviously inactive, unloved groups. Expect this in the next month. 


Later this year, we'll release time-based expiry where owners can reattest the use of their group to extend expiry. We won't release expiry until we release deletion recovery - so you can recover a group that's been undesirably expired. 

No one knows everything about public folders... The cockroaches of Exchange persist because their workings are shrouded in mystery, even to those who have access to the code.

Expiry's coming, which will be great. I recall hearing mutterings some time ago about "locking" a group. I've often seen groups used for projects, and it would be great to have functionality to allow groups to be closed (but not nuked) when they've served their purpose.


Is this in the works?

Thanks Eric. Will the group activity understand activity across any workload, e.g. conversations, files, planner, onenote ....

Currently managing a programme for a flagship pharma authority in UK and DK market.. 37k public folders, 13TB shared folders, ~20TB Documentum / Lotus Notes and a dash of SP2003+2007content is being planned for migration into O365 - SPO + potentially Groups (expecting 60%+ of content to be archived on Azure BLOB storage)...
EA, Info Management & Records Management teams need to make a decision within a month on the new IA and architecture design principles. O365 Groups seem to lack 3rd party governance tools... any suggestions @Ladislau Conceicao & team?

Hi Boris

At LEGO we are looking at the Danish MS partner ProAvtive who has a tool WorkSpaces that looks to be a tool for the job when it comes to governance on O365 Groups, Sites and even Yammer Groups.

We are in the process of implementing it so no real experience yet. But it looks promising.
Hi Boris, sounds like some of these requirements will justify more structured storage options using managed metadata etc. This doesn't normally exclude other areas of content being group and individual owned.
It's alerady been mentioned in the roadmap that groups will gain a feature for users to declare the classification of the group, and there will be some point of extensibility to allow a governance process to operate.
See roadmap at http://fasttrack.microsoft.com/roadmap#R-31831

Standard pester question for you @Ladislau Conceicao since @Jim Van Eaton told us to, what is the current status of Guest Access and when can we expect to get our hands on it? :)

We are working to get Guest Access available to all customers with First Release option by September 1st. There are few things in our internal processes that we need to close on before we can confirm that date however, so the data might change.

I am not best person to answer on the 3rd party governance tools for Office 365 Groups, but I am looking for the right person to answer this.


What I can tell you right now is that migrating 37K public folders should not be a problem at all, since Exchange Online supports up to 100K folders and up to 50GB of total content in public folders in a single tenant.

@Allan Bau Madsen - what governance features did you need to jump to ProActive for - especially related to Groups? 


Where is the best spot to understand upcoming features of Groups? The Roadmap?
Rob it depends, for forward looking view on what we are working on you can look at https://fasttrack.microsoft.com/roadmap as we get closer to releasing feature we tend to blog about and then release documentation as well. Note we'll have a number of Groups sessions at Ignite next month and these will be made publically available afterwards.

Thanks @Christophe Fiessinger!  I am in particular wanting to know how Calendars in O365 Groups will work. See this thread on the Yammer-side: https://www.yammer.com/itpronetwork/#/Threads/show?threadId=695900429  (you are already in that thread, but connecting the dots).


I would like the calendar to be Group-specific meetings and milestones that can then be pulled into your own personal calendar (vs. the current function shows the collected calendars of all members of the group concatenated).  


I will keep my eye out for Ignite presentations, but if anyone on the Engineering Team has any insight on how Group Calendars will ultimately work, that would be good for me to know now.




Hi Jim - We have been unable to turn on Office 365 groups (BTW is this the authoritative name?  I have heard other names) in our environment.  One of the blockers was that we couldn't specify a group prefix (which would invite lots of name collisions in our environment) that's gone, but apparently Planner ignores it. My understanding (not sure how I aquired it) is that Planner uses Office 365 groups but it is provisioned in a manner that will ignore the group prefix that we have selected for Office groups.   Is my understanding correct?  That planner has a dependency on groups, but that it ignores the group prefix we fought hard and waited for?  Thanks - Greg