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General Chat Thread, Office365 - what are the costs to use?? How does it compare to google mail?? in General; We really, really need to update our email system. Have been looking at Office365, setup a trial and it kinda ...
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    Office365 - what are the costs to use?? How does it compare to google mail??

    We really, really need to update our email system.

    Have been looking at Office365, setup a trial and it kinda looks ok - ish??
    Wants to download Office 2010 Pro Plus onto the laptop i'm trying it out on - but oddly this laptop already has it installed.

    Can't find the costs out anywhere. free for students but charges for differing plans and uses for staff?

    All we want to do is access email and share documents I think.
    Some students may use it.

    I personaly use google mail at home (with family) which works wonders. Here we are a very MS enviroment, kids have struggled when we tried google docs with them (SEN School) but it may be the way we go.

    Anyways, got to look into this and get an answer / descision asap!

    Anyone using Office365?
    Cheers

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    Remember that Google Mail will be stored outside of the EU - that's enough to scrub it in many environments.

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    Norfolk County Council have switched to google mail - have google housed eu servers just for them?

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    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    The basic Office 365 product is free for educational use from what I remember - we saw a presentation on it when edugeek went to M$ Reading last February. I will see if I can track down the slides.

    Cloud Services & Software for Schools - Microsoft Office 365

    [Edit]
    This is the presentation: Office 365 for Education

    Prices were in USD (Slide 13) as it hadn't been launched, but it gives you an idea
    Last edited by elsiegee40; 21st November 2011 at 03:20 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by klop View Post
    Norfolk County Council have switched to google mail - have google housed eu servers just for them?
    I don't know - I'm not an expert, but this is Google's official line:

    Your data will be stored in Google's network of data centers. Google maintains a number of geographically distributed data centers, the locations of which are kept discreet for security purposes. Google's computing clusters are designed with resiliency and redundancy in mind, eliminating any single point of failure and minimizing the impact of common equipment failures and environmental risks.

    And I know this line has caused people to not go with them. If Norfolk have gone, then they're clearly satisfied that they're fulfilling their obligations.

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    apearce's Avatar
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    If you want email you can get that for free from Microsoft already with live@edu. This will then be moved to the Office 365 for Education where the email service will remain free. Other services will become active for you to subscribe from.

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    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    This is the presentation: Office 365 for Education

    Prices were in USD (Slide 13) as it hadn't been launched, but it gives you an idea

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    I guess if we are happy with just email and calendars Office365 is probably our best way ahead.
    However, if we (and personaly I would) want to write and store files online in the same place as our email - google is our way (we've no money you see!)

    I just remember the feedback when I tried to push openoffice - I forgot how much peeps can moan!

    Thanks for advice/comments so far

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    I was at a Public Sector IT event last week and another Council went with Google Mail, apparently they were told their data is in Europe but they can't guarantee where... doesn't match with what I've heard so far but take it as you will.

    Was considering Office 365 for staff as opposed to upgrading to a local Exchange 2010 VM but had these issues...

    • with all emails and attachments in the cloud what load will 200 users have on our Internet connection (10Mb)
    • in order to have seamless SSO and Outlook when on the network it appears we need to run 5 additional servers, lots of extra config
    • what is the official stance on backup and retention with Office 365 if being used for staff?

    As far as the 5 servers goes I'm wondering if anyone can confirm... only looked fairly quickly at a deployment guide on my phone but I saw 2 x ADFS servers (maybe go on DC?), 2 x ADFS proxy servers and a DirSync server? They might be quite light roles but seems a lot of extra legwork to get it all going... or is it much more simple than it seems?

    Student mail is already done via Live@Edu but it's used more sporadically by students and via Moodle so not as heavy load as admin staff who spend most of the day emailing so a different usage profile.

    The main reason to look at Office 365 was to give staff much larger mailboxes and "never delete"... although I'm not sure if this is enough to satisfy an archiving point of view as users can still remove mail (is there a cloud service from MS for this?) but if the above points aren't taken into consideration it could end up causing more problems than it solves...

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    Most of my schools went with Google.

    As you have done with MS why don't you setup Google Apps for Education and see for yourself before jumping with MS. It can be set up using your school domain and was a much easier process than the MS setup.

    The Google system was imo much more joined up under the hood.

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    GrumbleDook's Avatar
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    I'm in Reading this week and on Wednesday I'm in a group having a chat with Various MS staff including @jamesbmarshall to see what is out there. Office365 is on my list of questions. #msedf for live tweets.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gshaw View Post
    I was at a Public Sector IT event last week and another Council went with Google Mail, apparently they were told their data is in Europe but they can't guarantee where... doesn't match with what I've heard so far but take it as you will.
    It doesn't matter anyway; you've covered yourself if you follow the ICO guidelines. The guidelines say that data can be held outside of Europe if the company conform to Safeharbour - which both Google and MS do.

    It looks like Office 365 is going to be quite expensive to do the same things Google apps already does, plus it's a bit of an unknown quantity since Google has a few years headstart on developing online apps.

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    Blimey you do get around a bit don't you!

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    Office365 might be new to education, but it is being used in businesses right now.

    I've been using it as part of a collaborative project and for a single company / entity I found it far more feature rich than Google Apps, but google Apps won on collaboration with public groups or people outside of your business.

    There are good reviews / comparisons online, but few focussed on education right now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tommej View Post
    Blimey you do get around a bit don't you!
    Tomorrow is the Launch of LP+4
    Wednesday I have been invited, with others, to talk social networking and in the evening it is the start of the Partners In Learning conference, with the Teacher Meet
    Thursday is the Partners in Learning Conference itself.

    If I can't find good use of Live@Edu and plans for Office365 there, $deity knows where I'll find it ;-)

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