Azure Stack Review

A great way to extend Azure services to the environment of your choice

What is our primary use case?

We're getting more serious with Office 365 now. We start from the mailbox, the mail server exchange, and then we also have SharePoint. We have migrated all the local network drives, shared drives, home drives, to Office 365 SharePoint. We have been making use of the document library for sharing, and this year, we've started to use more of Microsoft Teams as a kind of collaboration, for online meetings within the organization and also to communicate with our students. Microsoft Teams is not the only software that we use, we also use Zoom for class meetings, and then Microsoft Teams for team meetings, really.

As an education provider, we have many students — over a thousand students actually; they are also the users of this domain. We also have 250 permanent and casual staff, it's quite a big number.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using this solution for almost two years.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

At this stage, we are quite pleased with Office 365 Azure. To me, Azure offers a pathway for dealing with the active directory, and for storing all our Office 365 information assets.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support is quick and responsive. I find that whenever I encounter an error (sometimes it's really the system errors or something that I didn't know how to do), the customer support is quite helpful. We get good support from Microsoft in terms of Office 365.

Take today, for example, we have a worldwide issue (maybe just Australia), and our Office 365 cloud authentication components were down for almost an hour. Thankfully, customer support helped us rectify that problem very quickly.

What about the implementation team?

A consultant helped us with the implementation back in 2018.

What other advice do I have?

I would only recommend this solution to smaller organizations like ours because I cannot really speculate what big issues that the bigger organizations will face. For a small or medium-sized college, it's quite good — I can't see any negative sides. In particular, our staff and students don't really use our computers. That means they are bringing their own devices and using their own computers. Because of Office 365, they don't need to come here (to campus) and they don't need to connect to any kind of VPN in order to access their emails or order their course materials or even the information that we provide on the internet, for that matter. Everything is on the cloud.

On a scale from one to ten, I would give this solution a rating of ten — strictly because I have nothing to compare it to.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud
**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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