Office 365 Connectivity Guidance – On The Wire
However, one area I felt it would be worthwhile expending some effort on writing up whilst we work on more verbose guidance is, how to connect to your Office 365 implementation from your corporate environment. It’s an area I speak to customers about on a daily basis and the wealth of options can make it a highly complex area to get right. There isn’t a one size fits all model either, what’s right for one customer will be the wrong thing for another which makes generalizing advice hard and we need the details to make a correct recommendation.
There is also perhaps not quite enough information out there on Microsoft’s global network infrastructure to allow customers to use this information to their advantage. This is something I aim to at least try to attempt to address here and further in the verbose guidance being worked on and the Azure networking team have also started adding more output on this subject.
The other complexity revolves around the fact the cloud is a moving goal post for connectivity, it’s very nature means endpoints change regularly, applications may change their connectivity type as improvements are rolled out, new services are added, and so on. As such we need a network design which abstracts the organization from these changes, allowing the fluid nature of the cloud to be invisible to the end user whilst allowing the power of the services to be delivered optimally and enable the organization to consume service optimizations when they are rolled out.
What we need to do therefore is to drive for some standard connectivity principles, and by doing this we can achieve the ‘north star’ of optimal, flexible and abstract connectivity to our cloud services.
So, what are these standard approach elements from a Microsoft standpoint?