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Microsoft 365 Admin Center Getting Multitenant Management Capabilities

Microsoft announced on Tuesday that its new "All Tenants" feature in the Microsoft 365 Admin Center portal is starting to arrive for partners that work with cloud service providers and multiple customers.

The All Tenants feature adds the ability for the Microsoft 365 Admin Center users to list and work with "multiple" tenancies (defined as two or more tenancies). The portal was originally designed to support just a single tenant -- essentially a single subscriber to Microsoft 365 services that accesses shared Microsoft datacenter infrastructure. However, Microsoft found that over one third of Microsoft 365 Admin Center users manage multiple tenancies.

The single tenancy management limitation of the Microsoft 365 Admin Center portal has been an issue for Microsoft's partners that support multiple Microsoft 365 customers. However, 66 percent of Microsoft's enterprise customers also have multiple tenancies to manage, a September Microsoft-produced video explained.

The All Tenants feature is rolling out now to partners that serve as Microsoft 365 administrators for customers. Microsoft's next step is to enable the All Tenants feature for use with the Azure Active Directory B2B (Business to Business) service, which lets organizations share access and resources with partners and other companies. The Azure AD B2B All Tenants capability is rolling out now, but just to partners.

All Tenants is mainly an addition for the above two scenarios (partners and Azure AD B2B users). However, other scenarios yet to come include support for select enterprises that manage multiple Microsoft 365 tenancies, as well as support for merger and acquisition scenarios. Microsoft is also working on adding support for regulatory splits and test scenarios.

The All Tenants feature gets triggered through an "Organization Switcher" control within the Microsoft 365 Admin Center portal. It's explained in this February Microsoft announcement.

Microsoft is investing in this capability because its customers were using the portal and trying to manage multiple Microsoft 365 tenants, and they were often using scripts and other tools to get the job done, the video explained. Typically, users wanted a single management portal that would show what was happening across all of the tenants they managed. They wanted to be able to execute bulk actions, plus they wanted to easily switch between tenants and see the differences between tenants, the video added.

The All Tenants aggregate insights dashboard view in the Microsoft 365 Admin Center portal reached the "general availability" release status during last month's Microsoft Ignite online conference, according to the video. It lets users click on "tickets" or alerts and drill down into the details. The portal's "Service Health" view also has been geared to work with the All Tenants capability. 

In late September or early October, Microsoft planned to show support tickets in the Microsoft 365 Admin Center's "Service Requests" view, per the video. It's not clear if that capability is available now.

Before the end of the calendar year, Microsoft is planning to deliver the ability to use Setup in the Microsoft Admin Center across multiple tenants, according to the video.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for 1105 Media's Converge360 group.

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