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New GUI-based Tool to Create Shared Mailboxes

In the current version of Exchange Online, you create and configure shared mailboxes using the Windows PowerShell command line. You must create the shared mailbox, configure quotas, and then assign permissions so that users can open and send messages from the shared mailbox. To make this task a lot easier, Microsoft Office 365 team has created a GUI-based tool that you can use to create and configure shared mailboxes.

For instructions about how to install and use the Office 365 Shared Mailbox Tool

Step 1: Download the Office 365 Shared Mailbox Tool

Download the .zip file that contains the Office 365 Shared Mailbox Tool, which is a GUI-based tool you can use to create and configure shared mailboxes in Exchange Online. This .zip file contains two files:

  • SharedMailboxTool.ps1 This is PowerShell (PS1) script for the Office 365 Shared Mailbox Tool.
  • StartSharedMailboxTool.bat This is a DOS batch (.bat) file that you use to launch the Office 365 Shared Mailbox Tool.

After you download the .zip file, extract the two files to the same folder.

Step 2: Create a Security group and add members

The Office 365 Shared Mailbox Tool assigns a security group the permission to access and send mail from the new shared mailbox. You can’t use the tool to assign permissions to an individual user. To create a security group and add members:

1. Start the Exchange Control Panel (ECP) and create a new distribution group:

  • Office 365 for professionals and small businesses In the Office 365 portal, on the Admin Overview page, under Outlook, click Distribution groups. On the Distribution Groups page, click New.
  • Office 365 for enterprises In the Office 365 portal, on the Admin Overview page, under Exchange, click Manage, and then select Manage My Organization > Users & Groups > Distribution Groups > New.

2. Specify a display name, alias, and e-mail address.

3. Select the Make this group a security group check box.

4. In the Ownership section, click Add to add an owner, if necessary.

5. In the Membership section, click Add.

6. In the Select Members page, select the users you want to add. When you are finished, click OK.

7. On the New Group page, click Save.

Step 3: Run the O365 Shared Mailbox to create and configure a shared mailbox

Now you’re ready to create a new shared mailbox and assign permissions to allow access to it by members of the security group you created in step 2. Here’s how:

1. In the folder where you extracted the files in the SharedMailboxtool.zip file, double-click StartSharedMailboxTool.bat

Note: If the Office 365 Shared Mailbox Tool doesn’t start, you may need to configure the execution policy on your computer. To do this, run the following command in Windows PowerShell and then start the shared mailbox tool.

Set-ExecutionPolicy RemoteSigned

2. In the Office 365 Administrator Credentials window, enter the user ID and password for an administrator account in your Office 365 organization, and then click OK. It might take a few minutes before the next window is displayed.

3. In the Office 365 Shared Mailbox Tool window, enter the following information:

  • The name for the shared mailbox. This name appears in the address book, on the To: and From: lines in e-mail, and in the Mailboxes list in the ECP.
  • The alias for the shared mailbox. The e-mail address for the new shared mailbox consists of the alias on the left side of the @ symbol and your domain name, like fourthcoffee.com, on the right side.
  • The name of the security group that will be assigned permissions to the shared mailbox. You can use the security group’s display name or alias.

4. Click Create to create the shared mailbox and assign permissions to the specified security group.

That’s it. Click Refresh on the Mailboxes page in the ECP to display the new shared mailbox. It may take up to 60 minutes before members of the security group can access the new shared mailbox.

 

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