What is O365?

O365 is Microsoft’s online collaboration platform. It includes email, calendaring, file storage (OneDrive), collaboration tools and more. Watch Microsoft’s short video on Office 365.

What are the benefits of using Office 365 for email and calendaring?

Office 365 Outlook provides you with business-class email, calendars, and contacts, which can be accessed from your web browser, computer or phone. Delivered as a hosted service from Microsoft, it offers a high standard of security for your information while providing the control you want and the reliability you need. Office 365 runs your email on Microsoft’s globally-redundant servers protected by built-in antivirus and anti-spam filters.

For our top 5 reasons to move to Outlook, click here!

How will I use Office 365 for email and calendar?

Below describes some ways you can connect to your email account:

Web Browser: The Outlook Web App lets you use a web browser to access your mailbox from any computer that has an internet connection. You can use it to read/send email messages, organize contacts, create tasks, and manage your calendar and the shared calendars. You can use Outlook Web App with almost any Web browser. This includes Internet Explorer, Edge, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Apple Safari.

Email Client: You can access Office 365 using your desktop Microsoft Outlook application (recommended by Microsoft).

Mobile phones and tablets: Office 365 also works with a variety of mobile phones and tablets. You can set up your mobile phone or device to access your email, calendar, contacts, and tasks check out Android,  Apple iOS or BlackBerry support page for more information about how to configure your mobile device.

Will Outlook work with operating systems other than Mac or Windows, such as Linux?

Yes! Outlook can be accessed via a web browser


I’m a Mac/Apple user. Will O365 work for me?

Yes. Almost all of O365's services and features offered for Windows will work on Mac devices.

Will O365 work on my phone/tablet?

Yes! O365 apps are optimized for mobile use.

I’m a Linux/Unix user. Will O365 work for me?

Yes! All the features available in O365 are available through a web browser. Email will also work with most major mail clients.

How much will it cost? Will my department have to pay to use it?

There will be no cost to your faculty or department.

What is the difference between Office 365 and Office 2016?

Office 2016 is the newest version of the Office productivity suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc), a software suite typically accessed via the desktop. Office 365 is a cloud-based subscription to a larger suite of programs that includes Office 2016. For more info, click here!

Why is my name different in Office 365?

Your Microsoft Office account's data is populated by the HR database. This means that whatever your ‘Primary’ name is recorded as in HR will appear in the Active Directory as your Office 365 username. You can change your ‘Primary’ name online via HR Self-Serve. Changes made to your ‘Primary’ name will be visible in other systems, including MS Outlook Address Book within the next business day.

Security & Privacy

How secure is the information contained in emails and attachments?

Office 365 Outlook maintains the latest defenses against viruses and spam with ForeFront Online protection for Exchange, a service that handles over 150 million messages from 8.5 million users around the world every day and is updated to protect against new virus and spam threats as soon as they appear. Microsoft helps to safeguard your data by hosting it in Canadian data centers with continuous data backup and a premier disaster recovery plan. Email is vulnerable to access by unauthorized parties in transmission and in storage; it is recommended that electronic communication, including email not to be used for sensitive data.

How is my privacy protected?

The Office 365 service for York University is governed by a formal agreement between the University and Microsoft that provides significant assurances concerning the security and privacy of the information stored or handled in Office 365.

The University has also done a risk-based Privacy Impact Assessment of the email service to ensure that potential risks have been identified. Steps were taken to mitigate those risks and the University meets its legal requirements with respect to privacy.

All of York University’s policies, including guidelines on emailing continue to apply to the Office 365 service.

Where can I find additional information on Microsoft Privacy and Security?

O365 information about security, privacy and compliance can be found on Microsoft’s website. All aspects of this website are also included in the contract terms and conditions.

Could Microsoft make a data ownership claim on data stored in the York O365 accounts?

No. It is clearly addressed in the Microsoft online services agreement that they can not.

Will I still use my Passport York login ID and Password to login to O365?


Will Microsoft somehow use the information in our accounts or metadata about our accounts (data mine) for commercial purposes?

Microsoft’s contractual commitment restricts any use of information in or about YU accounts to use required to deliver the service. For example, Microsoft's automated services will scan incoming mail information in order to implement mail filters.

Is moving York mail to O365 effectively ceding control of future terms and @yorku.ca email addresses to Microsoft?

No. The terms and conditions include provisions that allow York to move our accounts elsewhere if we so wish.

Will O365 change YorkU's spam filtering?

The new spam filters in O365 have different rules for catching spam than our previous environment; as a result, some emails that previously went to your inbox may go into your junk mail folder after the migration. Learn more about junk mail with O365.

Deployment & Scope

Why are we doing this now?

A key factor in moving to O365 is the deployment by Microsoft of a Canadian data center which keeps YorkU account information in Canada.

What services would be included in YorkU’s rollout?

Please see the Services Tab for all apps/services included with O365!

Will the OneDrive storage space replace my shared drives?

No, not at this time. You will still have access to your shared drives and all your files during and following the migration.

Will this affect the departmental shared drives?

No, not at this time.

Will Macs be treated any differently than Windows computers?

No. Mac users' migration and implementation of new services will be the same as those using Windows computers.

I’m a Mac/Apple user. Will I have to use O365?

To take advantage of YorkU’s full suite of services, you will have to use O365; however, you can choose to set up a different email client to work with O365 if you wish. (Keep in mind, Outlook is York University's officially supported email program.)

Are students affected by this?

YorkU undergraduate students will have access to the O365 suite, but will still have access to the Google suite, and will continue to use Google for email.


How big will my new email quota be?

100 GB instead of your current 2 GB.

How much storage space (OneDrive) will I have?

You will have 5 TB of storage space with OneDrive. You will also still have access to your departmental shared drives.

I share my calendars with others, will this still be possible with O365?

Yes. Calendaring features will be comparable in O365, click here to find out more!

Will students be able to see my calendar?

By default, students, faculty and staff will continue to see only your free/busy information (no specific details). If desired, you can completely hide your calendar from everyone and only make it available to those you wish to see it.

Will this impact how I use my Outlook email client or MS Office suite (ie: Word, PowerPoint, Excel, etc.) on my computer?

O365 will have no effect on the software already installed on your computer. You will use Office products the same way you did before. The only difference is you will have more space for your email and files – 100 GB email quota and 5 TB of storage space in OneDrive.

Will I continue to be able to use software locally installed on my computer such as Microsoft Word and some of the add-ons for the Microsoft products that I have purchased?

Yes. So long as the add-ons are compatible with Office 365.

Do I need a wired internet connection to use O365, or does it work wirelessly?

O365 will work with any internet connection in any location on or off campus.

Will I be able to recover email? How?

Yes, you will be able to recover email by logging in to the web email client, right clicking on the deleted folder and choosing to restore deleted items.

How will I access O365 OneDrive? For example, can I have a desktop icon on my computer for that purpose?

There is a OneDrive client that you can install on your computer (Windows/Mac) that will allow you to access your OneDrive and synchronize it with a folder on your device. You will also have the option to map a folder or drive to your OneDrive directly if you wish.

Will Mail-in Databases be migrated?

Yes! Mail-in databases will be migrated automatically as "Shared Mailboxes". Shared Mailboxes have the same functionally as mail-in databases

Will my email folders stay the same?

Yes! Your mail will be migrated in the same folder structure that it currently has in Central Mail.

What is the maximum size for a file attachment in an O365 email?

35,840 KB for outbound messages and 36,864 KB for received messages.

Does Office 365 have an instant messaging feature?

Yes! Teams is our recommended and supported instant messaging option.

Which email clients will be supported?

Recommended Email Clients: For the best experience with Office 365, Microsoft recommends connecting via Exchange using Outlook 2010/2011/2013/2016, Outlook App for iOS/Android, or connecting to the Outlook Web App via the recommended Web Browsers.

Supported protocols: Office 365 can support the following protocols: Exchange(MAPI), ActiveSync, EWS (Exchange Web ServiceS), IMAP, POP3. Office 365 does not support Calendar standard (CalDAV) or address nook standard (CardDAV).

IMAP/POP3 Considerations: IMAP/POP3 connections will be supported and are on by default. However, Office 365 is an Exchange service, meaning that clients who connect using IMAP/POP3 protocols will have limited functionalities. Click here for Settings!

Which browsers can I use to access the web interface (Outlook Web App)?

Please refer to the Microsoft support website for updated supported browsers to access Outlook Web App.

What happens to my data in Outlook if I no longer work for the University?

If you are no longer employed by York University, YorkU may decide to immediately delete your Office 365 data. This includes your email, calendar, contacts, and OneDrive files (including documents you’ve shared). Prior to your departure from the University, you should coordinate with your manager and provide copies of critical documents stored in your OneDrive or email. Your account is recoverable for a period of no more than 30 days from the date your affiliation with the University ends.

Can Office 2010 and 2016 co-exist?

Yes! Office 2016 will not replace your existing Microsoft software. Users can even use the different versions simultaneously.

Is document collaboration possible with users that are not on the YorkU Office 365 platform?

Yes! anyone can collaborate provided they set up a Microsoft account. When you invite someone to collaborate and they do not have an account, they will be prompted to create one. There is no registration fee.

Does O365 include MS Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.)?

Yes! A primary step of the Office 365 project is the Office 2016 installation. You have been, or will be upgraded before email migration.

What is the Focused Inbox for Outlook?

Focused Inbox helps you focus on the emails that matter most to you. It separates your inbox into two tabs—Focused and Other. Your most important emails are on the Focused tab while the rest remain easily accessible—but out of the way—on the Other tab. You’ll be informed about email flowing to Other, and you can switch between tabs at any time to take a quick look. For more info, click here! For instructions on turning off Focused Inbox, click here!

What are O365 Groups?

Office 365 lets you easily create and manage groups. When you create a group, Microsoft Office will automatically provision that group with:

  1. A SharePoint site
  2. An email address
  3. A team in Microsoft Teams

What is the group naming convention?

All user-created groups must conform to a naming convention in order to avoid naming collisions and differentiate them from regular users.

The group naming convention has been changed to use the following prefix:

<Dept Abbreviation> followed by a dash “-”

The department abbreviation is dependent on the department the user creating the group belongs to. For example, if a UIT staff member creates a Team called “Projects”, the group name will be “UIT-Projects”.

This convention helps:

  • Identify what department or faculty created the group
  • Categorize groups in the address book
  • Improve searches related to a department or faculty
  • To allow multiple departments to have unique names for common groups (LAPS-Deans Office, EDU-Deans Office, etc.)


Click here for a list of department abbreviations!

Getting the wrong prefix, or want a different one? Contact askit@yorku.ca

What is the message-size limit in O365?

The maximum O365 email message size (including text and attachment) is 35 MB.

Can I recall a sent email?

Office 365 has a message recall option:

With message recall, a message that you sent is retrieved from the mailboxes of the recipients who haven’t yet opened it. You can also substitute a replacement message. For example, if you forgot to include an attachment, you can try to retract the message, and then send a replacement message that has the attachment.

Message recall is available after you click Send and is available only if both you and the recipient have an Office 365 or Microsoft Exchange email account in the same organization.

While this is a powerful Outlook feature, message recalls aren't guaranteed and you should be aware of some instances where a message recall might not work. Click here for details.

For more information on message recall,  click here!

How To

Access my O365 Account

Set up Outlook via IMAP

While it is possible to access Outlook via IMAP connection, this connection is not supported as it has limited functionality (no calendaring data). Click here for instructions on downloading the Outlook Desktop client.

Below is the information required to configure IMAP, SMTP and POP connections:

Server name Port   Requires SSL (TLS)
Incoming Mail (IMAP) Server: outlook.office365.com 993 Yes
Incoming Mail (POP) Server: outlook.office365.com 995 Yes
Outgoing Mail (SMTP) Server: smtp.office365.com 587 Yes

For more information on IMAP connections, click here!

Configure O365 Email for Thunderbird

For instructions on configuring your O365 email account to work with Thunderbird, click here!

Turn Off Focused Inbox

Create a shortcut on my desktop to Outlook Web App

To create a desktop icon for your Outlook Web App

  1. Open Chrome, Firefox, or Internet Explorer
  2. Go to: the Office 365 Portal 
  3. Sign in using your pyusername@yorku.ca and Passport York password
  4. Navigate to your email, by selecting the mail tile 
  5. Now, minimize your window click the URL displayed in your internet's search bar, and drag and drop it to your desktop
  6. A shortcut will be added

Note: You will still need to sign in to access mail using a desktop shortcut

Pin the toolbar in Outlook

To pin the toolbar in Outlook:

  1. Open Outlook
  2. Navigate to the "View" tab
  3. Select the pin icon in the rightmost corner of the top ribbon Image result for pin symbol

Add/view a shared calendar on a mobile device

To add/view a shared calendar in on a mobile device:

First, the user sharing the calendar needs to send calendar permissions to the user who wishes to access it on their mobile device. Next, the user the calendar is shared with needs to action the notification email using their Mobile Client.

User sharing the calendar

Users granting access to a shared calendar must ensure they first have access to the mailbox to which the calendar belongs

1. Using a web browser, log in to the Microsoft portal
2. Select, Mail 
3. Open your account's calendar 
4. Next, open the My Accounts tab by selecting your username from the top right corner
5. Select Open another mailbox

6. Enter the shared mailbox name to log in to the shared mailbox

7. Open the shared mailbox's calendar 
8. Right-click on the Calendar field and select Sharing Permissions

9. In the Send a sharing invitation in the mail field, enter the name of the user you'd like to give calendar access to (this can be your own username)
10. From the pull-down menu,  select the calendar access level you'd like to assign to that user (typically you would select "Delegate" if you want to delegate the full calendar)

11. Click Share

You are now done sharing the selected calendar; however, the person who has been emailed access to the calendar still has to set it up for access on their mobile device. This requires them to action the shared notification email using their mobile Outlook client.

User the calendar is shared with

After the above steps have been completed, the assigned user will receive an email from the shared mailbox indicating that they have been granted calendar permissions

  1. The user the calendar is shared with must accept and action the invitation using the Outlook mobile client on their phone/mobile device (Android or IOS)

Once the invitation is accepted, the user will see the shared calendar in the calendar view on the mobile device

Create groups in Office 365

To create a group in Office 365:

1. Open the Outlook web app via portal.office.com
2. Navigate to the Groups field located in the left panel,  and select Create 
3. Now, select Next to create a standard group
4. Enter a Group name (this will become the group's default email address)
5. Next, create a meaningful description
6. Now, choose if you'd like your group to be Public or Private

*NOTE: Public groups can be seen and joined by anyone at York U, and the group's contents can also be accessed by anyone at York U

7. Review the remaining group options, and then click 
8. Now, input the name of the member you'd like to invite to the group and then click

10. You can add multiple people simultaneously

Set privacy settings (public/private) for groups in Office 365

By default, when you create a personal group in Office 365 it is set as public; however,  an option exists to make the group private

Public groups can be seen and joined by anyone at York University, and the group's contents can also be accessed by anyone at YorkU.

Private groups can only be seen and joined by people who have been invited or approved by a group owner. Their contents are likewise only accessible by existing members of the group.

If a group already exists and you want to change it from public to private (or vice versa), you can by following the steps below:

Change a group to "private" or "public" in the Outlook web app:

1. Open the Outlook web app via portal.office.com
2. From the left panel, select the Office 365 group that you wish to edit

3. From the group page, click the group settings icon

4. Next, select Edit group

5. From the Privacy dropdown, choose either Private or Public 

6. Click to make your selection, and close the page. It may take a few minutes for the changes to take effect

Recover Deleted items in Office 365

When you accidentally delete an item from your Outlook mailbox, you can often recover it. The first place to look is the Deleted Items folder. If you can't find it there, the next place to look is the Recoverable Items folder, which you can access by using the Recover Deleted Items tool.

Recover an item that's still in your Deleted Items folder

When you delete an email message, a contact, a calendar item, or a task, it's moved to the Deleted Items folder in your mailbox. If you're trying to find a message that was deleted, the Deleted Items folder is the first place to look. If the message is there, here's how to recover it:

  1. In your email folder list, click Deleted Items 
  2. Once you've found your message, do one of the following to recover it:

a. To restore a message to your inbox:

I. Right-click it, and then click Move > Inbox

b. To restore a message to a different folder:

I. Right-click it, and then click Move > Other Folder 

Click Move and then click Other Folder

II. Select a folder location and then click OK

c. To recover other types of items in the Deleted Items Folder, Do one of the following::

I. To recover a contact, right-click it and then click Move to Contacts

II. To recover a calendar item, right-click it and then click Move to Calendar

III. To recover a task, right-click it and then click Move to Tasks

Select a folder to move other types of items

Recover an item that's no longer in your Deleted Items folder

If you can't find an item in the Deleted Items folder, the next place to look is the Recoverable Items folder. This is a hidden folder, and it's the place where items are moved when you do one of the following things:

  1. Delete an item from the Deleted Items folder
  2. Empty the Deleted Items folder
  3. Permanently delete an item by selecting it and pressing Shift+Delete

To Recover an item that's no longer in your Deleted Items Folder:

1. In Outlook, select the Folder tab

2. Next, click Recover Deleted Items

3. Select the item you would like to restore

4. Ensure the Restore selected item field is selected

5. Click OK

Share files with a Shared Mailbox using OneDrive

Sharing files with a shared mailbox via OneDrive can be difficult, as permissions are not assigned to an individual, but to the shared account itself.

This means that, when you share your file with a shared mailbox, the mailbox (and the users who have access to it) will receive notifications that the file has been shared, but not the permissions necessary to access it. If you need to share a file with members of a shared mailbox, it is recommended to share it directly with the individual members.

Let's pretend Martha wanted to share her latest potluck sign-up sheet with Bruce, Lois, and  Lex, and all three are part of the peoplewhodostuff@yorku.ca shared mailbox. If Martha sends the email directly to the peoplewhodostuff@yorku.ca, Bruce, Lois and Lex would receive a notification that the potluck signup sheet had been shared with them, but, when they go to fill it in, they would be told that they don't have permission to access the sheet. However, if Martha shares the document with Bruce, Lois, and Lex separately, then they will each receive a notification and when they click it, they will each be able to edit the sheet and tell Martha what they are bringing to lunch!

To share files with individual users, click here!

Approve a Room/Resource Booking as Moderator

Generally, rooms/resource requests are automatically approved/declined in O365 based on the resource's availability. However, there are rooms and resources restricted to a group or persons, and rooms that require approval from an owner.

How to Approve/Decline Meeting Rooms/Resource Request

  • Once a meeting is booked with a location that requires approval, the requestor will receive a tentative response pending approval from the owner

  • The resource owner will receive an email requesting approval and will need to either approve the resource booking request or decline it. There are two ways for the owner to action the meeting room request:

Option 1: Via Email

The owner can click accept or decline from the meeting invitation email received. To do so:

1. Open Email in a new window and click Accept or Decline

A meeting room request that requires an action from the resource owner will display the following message:

An accepted meeting, once opened, will display this message:

Option 2: Via Calendar 

Additionally, the owner can open any tentative events that appear on the resource's calendar and approve or decline them from there. To do so:

1. First, the owner will have to add the Room Calendar in Outlook. To add the calendar:

a. Click Calendar on the left side of the Outlook window

b. Locate the section labeled My Calendars on the left side of the window. Any room resources for which you are a manager or delegate should appear here. If you do not see the room:

i. On the Ribbon, click Open Calendar

ii. Select Open Shared Calendar…

iii. Type in the name of the room in the dialog box

iv. Select the calendar you want to display

2. Next, the Owner will need to open the room's calendar by selecting it. The request with a tentative icon (hashed border pictured below) indicates that the meeting room request has not been approved or declined

3. The owner can open any tentative meeting and approve or decline it

Suppress the Office 365 AutoDiscover redirect warning in Outlook 2016 for Mac

When you open Outlook 2016, you may receive the following message:

  1. Select Always use my response for this server
  2. Click  Allow 

If, after following the instructions above,  you are receiving this message:

    1. Close Outlook (if it's running)
    2. Open Terminal using one of the following methods:
      • With Finder as the selected application, on the Go menu click Utilities, and then double-click Terminal
      • In Spotlight Search, type Terminal, and then double-click Terminal from the search results
    3. Copy and paste the following command in the Terminal window, and then press Enter
      defaults write com.microsoft.Outlook TrustO365AutodiscoverRedirect -bool true
    4. On the Terminal menu, click Quit Terminal


Is there support for mobile devices like smartphones and tablets?

Microsoft recommends using the Outlook App in Android and iOS; if you are using another app, such as the built-in mail apps, then UIT is only able to offer best-effort support.

What mobile devices does YorkU support for Office 365?

York University only supports Office 365 on Android, Apple iOS and BlackBerry devices.

Will Office 365 email and calendar work on my Android, iPhone, or other mobile devices?

Yes! O365 is configured for use on all mobile devices.

How do I set up Outlook on a smartphone or tablet?

Please go to the Android Apple iOS or BlackBerry support page for instructions.

What is the Scheduled Mailbox?

The "Scheduled" mailbox is a great way to manage important emails that come in during busy times, so they are not forgotten. This exciting Outlook feature allows you to move mail from your inbox to your "Scheduled" mailbox with the swipe of your finger. You can choose any length of time for your mail to stay in the "Scheduled" mailbox, and after that time, the email will return to your inbox and you will be notified as if the email was just sent.

To find out how to set up and use your Scheduled mailbox, click here!

Accessing a Shared Mailbox on a Mobile Device

For instructions on adding a shared mailbox to your Outlook mobile app, Click here!

How do I configure an IMAP connection on my Mobile Device?

While it is possible to access your mail on your mobile device via IMAP connection, it is not supported as it has limited functionality (no calendaring data).

Below is the information required to configure IMAP, SMTP and POP connections:

Server name Port Requires SSL (TLS)
Incoming Mail (IMAP) Server: outlook.office365.com 993 Yes
Incoming Mail (POP) Server: outlook.office365.com 995 Yes
Outgoing Mail (SMTP) Server: smtp.office365.com 587 Yes

For more information on IMAP connections, click here!

How do I book a room using the Outlook mobile app for Android?

Currently, there is a bug within the Android mobile application that does not allow for room booking using the Location field.

To book a room using the Outlook Mobile app for Android:

1. After inviting all meeting members, search the room you'd like to book in the People field

2. If the room you wish to book does not appear as you type, click Search Directory

3. Tap the room you'd like to book


The room will now appear in the people field