Managing Office 365 Deployment via Group Policy (GPO)
It is possible to manage an Office 365 deployment via GPO. So you can make sure that all the users are using the same vesion. Also you can ask certain people to test a newer version. If the new version gives issues, you can easily revert back to the previous version.
In this article I will show you how this is done.
Download the Office Deployment Tool and deploy O365 via SCCM
- Download the Office Deployment Tool for Click-to-Run.Extract the file.
- Create this download xml to download the installation sources:
- To download run the command:
"%~dp0setup.exe" /download "%~dp0download.xml"
- Create this deploy xml to deploy the downloaded Office 365 installation files:
- In this case the application is deployed via SCCM 2012 task sequence with the command:
setup.exe /configure deploy.xml
- If Office 365 is deployed to a computer, and Word will be opened, then it is visible as follows:
Create the policy
- Download and extract the Office 2013 Administrative Template files (ADMX/ADML) and Office Customization Tool.
- Created the policy. I used WMI filtering to make sure that the policy is only applied to the machines where Office 365 has been installed.
Select * From win32_Directory where name="c:\\Program Files\\Microsoft Office 15\\root\\office15"
- The policy as it has been created:
- The installation deadline. It is in the format MM/DD/YYYY TT:TT where TT:TT is the UTC time.
- The update path. If the update path is empty, then the sources will be downloaded from the internet.
- The target version. You can enter whatever version, even a downgrade is possible. You can find all the version numbers on Update Office 2013 or Office 365.
- On a computer with Office 365 installed, the policy is applied:
- You can verify it with regedit:
- Now Office updates are enabled:
- After a while you will be notified that there are updates. You have 15 minutes time to install them:
- The updates are applied. In this case a downgrade.
Office 365 cannot be updated anymore
- In some situations your Office 365 installation cannot be upgraded anymore:
- In ‘Programs and Features’ you can Repair the Office 365 installation. Please note that admin rights are needed to perform this action.
- The updates are installed in the background:
The latest available Office 365 installation is downloaded from the internet and applied successfully:
Perform an online Repair:
See Advanced Office 365 ProPlus Troubleshooting if you need information about logging.
The time between the version number that has been installed and mentioned in the policy might not be bigger than 1 year. Otherwise you might see the following error message in the logfile:
ProcessKiller::PopulateResources: Filed to Get list of files to update. Exception = ErrorCodeOnly (::GetFilesToUpdate failed , Error:0x80004003)