Welcome to the Microsoft 365 Fundamentals course. This course provides foundational-level knowledge on of Microsoft 365. The content starts with the principles of cloud computing and then focuses on the business values and capabilities of Microsoft 365 – the world’s productivity cloud. Focus areas include productivity and teamwork solutions, business management capabilities, and security and compliance. Also covered are Microsoft 365 licensing, service and support options. Completion of the course prepares students for the MS-900: Microsoft 365 Fundamentals certification exam.
The Microsoft 365 Fundamentals course is designed for anyone looking to demonstrate foundational knowledge on the available options and benefits gained by implementing Microsoft 365 cloud service offerings.
MS-900 includes four study areas, as shown in the table. The percentages indicate the relative weight of each area on the exam. The higher the percentage, the more questions you are likely to see in that area.
You can access the free on-demand training for MS-900 below:
Basic computer skills are recommended, but there are no formal prerequisites.
Cloud computing is the delivery of computing services—servers, storage, databases, networking, software, analytics, intelligence and more—over the internet (“the cloud”). Instead of maintaining CPUs, random access memory (RAM), and storage in your datacenter, cloud computing enables you to rent these cloud-based computing services from a cloud service provider. When you choose to use the cloud, you shift certain responsibilities to the cloud service provider so that you can focus on other things—such as your business—and less on the underlying technologies. The cloud service provider maintains the underlying infrastructure, platforms, and services for you.
Cloud computing has three major categories. It’s important to understand them because they are referenced in conversation, documentation, and training.
Once you’ve chosen the right deployment model for your organization, it’s time to start planning your migration. The two different service models require different approaches – migration for cloud-only deployments and coexistence for hybrid deployments.
Migration is moving everything from an old system to a new system, with the intent of eventually removing the old system. In the context of your cloud deployment, you move your data and applications from local resources up into the cloud, to infrastructure provided by your CSP. For example, if you have a free, web-based mail service and decide to move to the more secure email system in Microsoft 365, you’ll need to migrate all users’ email accounts from the free online service to Exchange Online in Microsoft 365. After that migration, users access their old email and inboxes through Outlook, and the data is stored in Exchange Online; there’s nothing left in the old system to use.
Coexistence means two different systems, one on-premises and one in the cloud, connect and work together at the same time (or coexist) as a single service (such as email). For example, in contrast to the example above, you’ve chosen to go with a hybrid environment where your Microsoft 365
subscription extends your existing Microsoft Exchange servers. You’ll link the on-premises Windows Server Active Directory and Exchange Server to their online Azure Active Directory and Exchange
In this lesson, we discussed how you can work purely in the cloud or connect existing on-premises systems to the cloud to extend the value of legacy infrastructure. Then we looked at how the two different service models require different approaches – migration and coexistence. Finally, we reviewed some considerations for migrating systems with older versions of Windows, Office Server, and Office to Microsoft 365.
Microsoft 365 Apps includes the Microsoft productivity suite of applications, such as Word, Excel, Power-Point, Outlook, and Teams for both Windows and Mac devices. Microsoft 365 Apps isn’t just a web-based version of Office – instead it’s a full version of Office that your users install and run on all their devices. The Office applications that come with Microsoft 365 Apps are fully compatible with the on-premises or online versions of Exchange Server or SharePoint Server.
You can install Microsoft 365 Apps from a network share or directly from the internet. After it’s installed, you don’t have to be connected to the internet to use Microsoft 365 Apps. However, you’ll need to connect at least once every 30 days to ensure your license is still active.
Many organizations use on-premises IT solutions. This means that they maintain physical or virtual servers and services in their IT datacenters. However, organizations are moving their services to cloud providers at an increasing rate. Microsoft 365 provides a full range of services that can replace (or coexist with) an organization’s on-premises infrastructure and services.
You can choose from a variety of existing and new deployment tools for Windows 10 and Office 365 ProPlus, including Windows Autopilot and the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit for Windows, the Office Deployment Tool for Office, and Intune and Configuration Manager for both Windows and Office. As part of your deployment, you also choose whether to deploy Windows and Office from the cloud or from a local source on your network.
Unified endpoint management is a concept that describes a platform that includes device and app management. Microsoft Intune and System Center Configuration Manager (Configuration Manager), part of Enterprise Mobility + Security (EMS) in your Microsoft 365 subscription, help simplify modern workplace management. Use them to create a productive Microsoft 365 environment where your users can work on the devices and apps they choose, while still protecting your org’s data.
In today’s workplace, IT departments support different devices configured in different ways. Your org might have Android and iOS mobile phones, Windows 10 and macOS PCs, and custom devices your users bring to work. Not only do you have to support all of these devices, you have to be sure they meet organizational standards for security and device health. You also have to be able to configure them to support organizational apps and features, like VPNs, email settings, and updates.
Working in teams is an essential part of today’s modern workplace. An increasing number of workers are remote, mobile, or work from different time zones and geographic locations. In this module you will learn about the Microsoft 365 tools that facilitate teamwork for all workers, no matter where they are located or how they connect to your organization’s resources. These tools include apps designed for co-authoring and file sharing, security and compliance controls, and access controls via Azure Active Directory.
Which tools are best for your organization’s teamwork needs? It generally depends on your team members roles in the project and how you intend to communicate and collaborate with them.
The goal of any security design is to provide for defense in depth. Defense in depth is a security concept in which you protect your data by using several layers of security. If a malicious hacker, or attacker, compromises one layer of defense, other layers continue to offer protection. An analogy for the defense-in-depth concept is castles. Castles have moats, outer walls, and inner walls. A networking example is the common practice of having an external firewall, a perimeter network, and an internal firewall, with additional firewalls that you configure on each host computer.
When it comes to defending against cyberattacks, companies need to consider their digital estate. This represents all the assets you need to help protect. This is a bit different now than it was five or ten years ago – you’re now responsible for protecting a set of technologies you might not own, like user-owned mobile devices that access corporate data. It also includes systems and devices that your partners and customers use to access your information. Any one of these points can be a point of vulnerability. When it comes to security, you can no longer draw perimeters around your organization.
The first security pillar, identity & access management, is one of the most important. Microsoft 365 helps you identify who is accessing your resources and control exactly what they can access. Identity is the primary supporting pillar in any security system. You must be able to identify users (and devices) before you can determine the level of access or privilege that they have. You can establish identity through user and device accounts.
Azure AD constitutes a separate Azure service. Its most elementary form (which any new Azure subscription includes automatically) does not incur any extra cost and is referred to as Azure AD Free. If you subscribe to any Microsoft Online business services (for example, Office 365 or Intune), you automatically get Azure AD with access to all the free features.
A key task of any administrator is to protect and secure an organization’s resources and data. This set of tasks is typically referred to as device management. Users have many devices from which they open and share personal files, visit websites, and install apps and games. These same users are also employees who want to use their devices to access work resources such as email. Device management enables organizations to protect and secure their resources and data.
As the proliferation of data increases, and our reliance on storing and accessing that data online grows, so has the need for data management. Over the years, governmental and other agencies have become interested in how we use and share data, particularly personal data, like financial and health data.
Microsoft 365 supports your organization’s compliance needs with built-in tools and capabilities to help you protect information, manage data governance, and respond to regulatory requests.
Microsoft 365 offers a variety of subscriptions and licenses from which to choose. In this lesson, you’ll be introduced to the plans and options available to Microsoft 365 subscribers. You’ll then learn about how to manage your Microsoft 365 subscription, including adding and removing user licenses. You’ll also learn how Microsoft 365 billing works, including the different billing cycles, payment methods, and typical lifecycle phases of Microsoft 365 from provisioning to retiring.
As with any cloud-based service offering, Microsoft 365 subscriptions come with a guaranteed amount of uptime (such as a 99 percent available uptime average over the period of one year). The details of the guarantee vary from one cloud service provider to another and are detailed in a legal agreement between a cloud service provider and the customer, known as a Service Level Agreement (SLA).
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I wish you all the very best for your exam and continued career success! 👍
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