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Announcing Azure ExpressRoute connectivity to Office 365

Editor’s note 6/6/2016:
Please review our guidance on network connectivity for Office 365 including specific scenarios where ExpressRoute for Office 365 is recommended.

Today’s post was written by Julia White, general manager for the Office 365 team.

We’re pleased to announce that starting later this year, Office 365 customers will be able to use Azure ExpressRoute to establish a private, managed connection to Office 365. This is something our customers have been asking for since ExpressRoute launched last year. Currently, ExpressRoute provides customers with dedicated network connectivity through a private connection from their network to Microsoft Azure, and we’re excited to extend the same option for connectivity to Office 365.

Azure ExpressRoute 1

With network performance as predictable as your own on-premises environments, you might think of ExpressRoute for Office 365 like having the full Office 365 productivity solution in your own datacenter. ExpressRoute will offer Office 365 customers more predictable network performance, the ability to better manage network availability and the reliability that comes with dedicated connectivity. In addition, with ExpressRoute most Office 365 network traffic can avoid the public Internet, providing additional data privacy.

ExpressRoute delivers the benefits of public cloud, while surpassing the network reliability and privacy of the Internet. It is a great option for organizations that require premium, managed connectivity to their productivity services. You can define all aspects of your network connectivity provider’s connection from Microsoft to your users, helping ensure predictable network performance and availability. You can also use multiple ExpressRoute providers to establish ExpressRoute circuits in different geographic locations for additional redundancy and geo-resiliency.

Each ExpressRoute circuit automatically delivers two active physical connections for high availability, and the Microsoft networking elements are backed by our connection uptime SLA of 99.9 percent. We’re the only public cloud provider to offer this level of guaranteed availability for the connection. Of course, we are also the only public cloud provider who can offer both Azure and Office 365 services on a single network connection.

ExpressRoute is available today for access to Azure services, and is expected to be available for Office 365 in the third quarter of 2015. Network capacity planning is a first step to any networking project, whether using the Internet or ExpressRoute. You can find network and migration planning resources for Office 365 on TechNet. And stay tuned for more on availability dates and offerings from our network connectivity provider partners. You can learn more about ExpressRoute here.

—Julia White

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