Create an Office 365 Test Tenant
Everybody knows that test environments are a very good idea, providing a safe place to try new features or configuration changes to products, develop scripts and tools, or provide training for your staff. The same goes for Office 365.
For traditional on-premises infrastructure the reasons for not running test environments are usually cost-related. Sadly, it is very common for IT teams to not have the resources to build a separate environment that is a meaningful representation of their production environment.
Cloud services like Office 365 significantly lower the barrier to entry for operating a test environment. You can provision an Office 365 tenant within a few minutes, and even operate it for 30 – 90 days as a trial at zero cost. For long term testing requirements, the cost of a small number of paid licenses is trivial (and can often be slipped into the purchasing approval for the production tenant).
Creating a Office 365 trial subscription
If you do not yet have an O365 license, you can still easily create a test tenant. To do this, you must first activate a test license for O365. Otherwise, simply follow the steps under ‘Create a test tenant’.
To do this, visit office.com and click on ‘Buy Now’ to see an overview of the license models. If you need a Teams environment, select at least the Business Premium and Teams included. If you need an E1, E3 or E5 license, select ‘Office for Enterprises’ in the left navigation and click on ‘Create Trial’.
Once you have completed the steps described, you can create your test tenant.
Creating a test tenant
Creating a test tenant is very easy if you already have one of the following O365 subscriptions:
- Business Essentials
- Business Premium
- Enterprise E1, E3 und E5
- Education, Education Plus and Education E5
In this case, just open your ‘My Environments’-overview (https://cdx.transform.microsoft.com/my-tenants) and click on ‘Create Tenant’.
Microsoft now gives you various options for demo content for your new tenant. In case you don’t need all this additional demo content and are just searching for an environment to run test and play around, choose ‘Microsoft 365 Enterprise with Users and No Content’.
Click on ‘Create’ and you are ready to go with you new test tenant. These free environments expire after 90 days and are not extendable. If you need it for long term testing requirements, consider purchasing a small number of paid licences since the costs are manageable.
Happy with your test tenant and eager to try new things? Have a look at Teams Manager, the governance solution for Microsoft Teams!
Download it from the Microsoft Teams Store and get a 14-day free trial: