Now you can control who sees what in the Exchange Online GAL

Companies who have gone through a merger often need to have separate Global Address Lists (GAL) per company, with functionality that allows users to see only other appropriate users.

Schools often need different views of the GAL for subsets of users within the same organization – restrict students’ access to GAL to avoid misuse.

To mirror the GAL segmentation functionality available in on-premises Exchange Server, Address Book Policies (ABP) have added to Exchange Online in Office 365 – and there are a few things to notice:

  1. the ABP features are only available to customers with Office 365 for Enterprise (‘E’ plans) and Education (‘A’ plans). We are not making ABPs available to small business (P Plan).
  2. this feature to allows you to create custom additional Address Lists (ALs), Global Address Lists (GALs), Offline Address Books (OABs), as well as ABPs within your tenant. So even if you don’t use ABPs, you can add additional custom Address Lists to your tenant if you so choose.
    For example, you could create an Address List containing all the users with mailboxes in Chicago, and have Outlook and Outlook Web App (OWA) show that additional Address List. You don’t need ABPs, just the smarts to create a new Address List (we still recommend using custom attributes for filtering as they are consistent on all the mail enabled objects).
  3. we are creating a limit to the number of ABPs and OABs you can create by default. These things all consume resources and when you are a tenant on a multi-tenant shared platform you have to ensure one tenant doesn’t consume all the available resources. One way of doing that is by restricting the number of objects or actions one tenant can take.
    The default for Office 365 for Enterprise customers is to allow 10 GALs, 10 OABs, 10 ABPs and 40 ALs.

See also

  • Address Book Policies, Jamba Jokes and Secret Agents – link
  • Exchange Online Service Description – link

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