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Tenth Edition Published on July 1 and Available in EPUB/PUB and Kindle Versions
On July 1, the Office 365 for IT Pros team were delighted to publish the tenth edition of our unique eBook, Office 365 for IT Pros (2024 Edition). The book is now available from Gumroad.com (EPUB/PDF version) and Amazon.com (Kindle version). We will keep the 2023 edition online for a month or so to allow subscribers to download the latest files for that edition.
We started on the journey to write an always-up-to-date book about Office 365 in the summer of 2014. It’s been quite a trip since as the technology evolved from a loose collection of products that still had roots in the on-premises servers to a massive cloud service supporting 382 million monthly active users. Teams didn’t arrive until 2016 and now it has 300 million monthly active users. Microsoft cloud revenues extend to an annualized run rate of over $114 billion. Office 365 accounts for about half of those revenues. I don’t think that anyone could have predicted such growth when we started writing about Office 365 in mid-2014.
At this point, we like to think of the eBook as seven separate books, each of which could stand on its own merits:
- Azure AD.
- Exchange Online.
- SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business.
- Microsoft Purview Compliance solutions.
- Microsoft Information Protection.
- Automating Microsoft 365 with PowerShell and the Graph.
Maybe we should publish each as a separate title. That thought has certainly crossed our minds, but part of the value delivered by Office 365 for IT Pros is the integration of topics and knowledge across the entire ecosystem.
A New Challenge
The next big thing in Office 365 will be the Copilot era of artificial intelligence assistants. In their guidance to customers about how to prepare for Microsoft 365 Copilot, Microsoft emphasizes that users will get best results when Microsoft 365 holds an “abundance of data” for Copilot to process when it builds responses to user queries. That’s data stored in Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, OneDrive for Business, and Teams. We expect to cover Copilot for Microsoft 365 in detail after Microsoft releases the software later this year.
Creating the 2024 Edition
We update the contents of Office 365 for IT Pros on an ongoing basis and process hundreds of chapter updates annually. When the time comes to build a new edition, we do a complete end-to-end review of all chapters, led by an exhausting and detailed check by Vasil Michev, our technical editor. All hyperlinks are checked to make sure that it works, every screen shot is reviewed to ensure that it is still accurate, and all the PowerShell and Graph examples are tested (including the example scripts in the Office 365 for IT Pros GitHub repository). At the same time, chapter authors and Vasil consider whether text should remain in the book or be removed to make space for new material.
Given that we deal with 23 content chapters spanning 1,318 pages, over 681,000 words, and 1,226 code examples (PowerShell and Microsoft Graph), the review takes enormous effort, but it’s the only way to ensure an acceptable level of quality. The review also gives us a baseline to build on over the eleven monthly updates that we will produce for the 2024 edition between now and June 2024. Given that we have processed 97 monthly updates so far, we think we understand how to build and maintain an eBook on an ongoing basis.
We don’t have a foreword for this edition. This isn’t because we don’t respect the forewords written for previous editions by luminaries such as Jeffrey Snover and Jared Spataro (these forewords are available online). We greatly appreciate the sentiments expressed in these forewords but concluded that forewords are not something that a constantly updated book should have.
Extending Your Subscription
Subscribers for the 2023 edition should have received an invitation to extend their subscription to cover the new book for a low cost. Regretfully, we cannot offer people who bought the Amazon Kindle version a discount because we have no knowledge about these purchasers. Of course, we welcome new subscribers and greatly appreciate their support for our project.
Please consult our FAQ for more information about the book.
Quest Software sponsored the 2022 and 2023 editions of Office 365 for IT Pros. For this edition, we’re happy to receive the support of CodeTwo, most famous for their industry-leading email signature management software. Please read Chapter 24 or visit CodeTwo’s website to learn more about their innovative and useful solutions.
Hard Work Starts Now
After a short break, we’ll get going on monthly update #98, due to appear on August 1, 2023. Traditionally, a slower pace of Microsoft software changes applies during the summer months, but I’m sure we will find plenty of things to keep us busy. On to monthly update #98!