Topic Last Modified: 2012-12-10
A multi-tenant (hosted) Exchange 2013 deployment is defined as one where the Exchange organization is configured to host multiple and discrete organizations or business units (the tenants) that ordinarily don’t share email, data, users, global address lists (GALs), or other commonly used Exchange objects. This sharing of hardware, software and resources (all while maintaining a logical separation between tenants), allows organizations to leverage the simplicity of a standard Exchange deployment while providing multi-tenant functionality and services to meet their hosting needs.
Multi-tenancy in Exchange 2013 organizations
In Exchange 2013, we continue to support hosting by
using a standard, on-premises Exchange installation similar to the
approach used in Exchange 2010 Service Pack 2 (SP2). We
/hosting mode switch and are
emphasizing the use of address book policies (ABPs) in combination
with hosting management solutions and automation tools provided by
approved Independent Software Vendors (ISVs). These solutions are
built on a framework of Microsoft-approved configuration guidelines
and practices and will offer Exchange organizations an easier, more
robust way to provide hosting services and features.
Exchange 2013 supports multi-tenancy by leveraging the following primary components and features:
- Active Directory Instead of having
separate ExchangeOrganization Active Directory containers
for each business unit in a multi-tenant Exchange organization,
Exchange 2013 multi-tenancy is supported by using a single
ExchangeOrganization Active Directory container. This allows
for a simpler Active Directory structure and reduces the likelihood
of Active Directory-related permission problems.
To learn more about Active Directory changes in Exchange 2013, see Active Directory.
- Address book policies (ABPs) Introduced
in Exchange 2010 SP2, ABPs are used in Exchange 2013 to control
user access to an address list, the global address list (GAL), and
an offline address books (OABs) in the Exchange organization. ABPs
group these different Active Directory objects into a single,
virtual object that can be assigned to individual users and to
create a logical grouping of these resources along a multi-tenant
organizational structure. ABP functionality in Exchange 2013 is
similar to what it was in Exchange 2010 SP2.
To learn more about ABPs in Exchange 2013, see Address Book Policies.
- Hosting management solutions Some
administrators using Exchange 2013 to provide a hosted Exchange
solution will benefit from using a customized hosting management
approach. Due to some limitations of the Exchange Administration
Center (EAC), Microsoft works with third-party vendors to assist
them in the development of control panel and automation solutions
that are in compliance with the guidelines and approved framework
for hosted Exchange 2013 organizations. We recommend that
organizations configuring a hosted Exchange solution leverage these
tools to manage their hosted organizations where circumstances
To learn more about hosted management solutions, including validated solution vendors, see Exchange Server 2013 hosting and multi-tenancy solutions and guidance