Using PowerShell with Office365

Posted on 4/29/2011 @ 1:58 AM in #SharePoint by | Feedback | 2291 views

Did you know, you can fully manage Office365 with PowerShell?
What? Wasn’t Office365 supposed to be in the cloud – how do I use powershell with THAT!? Is it black magic? No not really!

Office 365 uses the remote powershell functionality of Windows Powershell 2.0. It builds upon the Windows remote management service (you will find it in the services console of Vista+ or Windows2008+ by default, or installed as an addon on XP). It uses that to connect to a web service, and download the available commandlets – based on the logged in user. WHOAA!!

So, what can be managed using PowerShell in Office 365?

  • You can manage domains
  • Security Groups
  • Enhanced Authorizations
  • Identity Federation
  • Partner support – where you designate a partner to manage your Office365
  • And Exchange.

Note that Lync and SharePoint online are not manageable via powershell. So, still sound like black magic? What are the actual steps to use Powershell in Office365? Well here they are.

  • Login to a machine, hopefully Windows 2008 (so it has Windows remote management service running).
  • Start powershell
  • Run the following command –
  • PS C:\Users\Administrator> Set-ExecutionPolicy unrestricted

    Execution Policy Change

    The execution policy helps protect you from scripts that you do not trust. Changing the execution policy might expose

    you to the security risks described in the about_Execution_Policies help topic. Do you want to change the execution


    [Y] Yes [N] No [S] Suspend [?] Help (default is "Y"): y

    PS C:\Users\Administrator>

  • Then, create a Office 365 credential using the following command –
  • PS C:\Users\Administrator> $cred = Get-Credential

  • In the username/password window that opens – enter the credentials of an Office 365 account. You can also use your current identity – if federation has already been setup.
  • Okay, next, start a new powershell session, say with the Microsoft Exchange Online -
  • PS C:\Users\Administrator> $O365 = New-PSSession -ConfigurationName Microsoft.Exchange -ConnectionUri https://ps.outlook

    .com/powershell -Credential $cred -Authentication Basic -AllowRedirection

    WARNING: Your connection has been redirected to the following URI:

    " "

    PS C:\Users\Administrator>

  • Well hooray! Your session is started. Next, import all the commandlets, and print say the number of commands available, like this -
  • PS C:\Users\Administrator> $importcmd = Import-PSSession $O365

    PS C:\Users\Administrator> $importcmd.ExportedFunctions.Count


    PS C:\Users\Administrator>

  • Well hooray! One more time! Now, lets run a command :)
  • PS C:\Users\Administrator> Get-User

    Name RecipientType

    ---- -------------

    DiscoverySearchMailbox {D919BA05-46A6-415f-80AD-7E09334B... UserMailbox

    Sahil UserMailbox

    sahiltest1 UserMailbox

  • And Sahil and sahiltest1, are my Office365 accounts right now :). w00T!

Sound off but keep it civil:

Older comments..

On 4/29/2011 2:20:05 AM Senthil said ..
Great Read! :)

On 4/29/2011 10:39:48 AM @SPJeff said ..
Awesome! Thanks for posting this. With all the emphasis MSFT placed on PowerShell they are walking the talk here. I'll give it a try.