Provisioning options for Office 365

  Operations supported ProvisioningProvisioning is the enterprise-wide configuration, deployment, and management of multiple types of IT system resources. Specifically, provisioning provides users access to equipment, software, or services. This involves creating, maintaining and deactivating required business process automation objects and attributes in systems, directories, and applications. options
Licenses and Roles Management Only Profile Sync User Sync Universal Sync
Provision Users  
Push licenses and roles Y Y Y Y
Create user N Y Y Y
Deactivate user Y Y Y Y
Edit user directly from within Office 365 Y(a) Y N(b) N(b)
Sync profile attributes(c)  
Sync basic user profile attributes N Y Y Y
Sync limited number of extended attributes in addition to the basic attributes N N Y Y
Sync all extended attributes N N N Y
Sync AD groupsGroups allow you to organize your end users and the apps they can access. Assigning apps to large sets of end users is made easier with groups. and resources(d)  
Sync security groups N N N Y
Sync contacts N N N Y
Sync distribution lists N N N Y
Sync resource mailboxes N N N Y
  1. Not available with Azure Active DirectoryActive Directory (AD) is a directory service that Microsoft developed for the Windows domain networks. It is included in most Windows Server operating systems as a set of processes and services. Initially, Active Directory was only in charge of centralized domain management. Sync or Directory Synchronization.
  2. Users can no longer be edited directly from within Office 365. Changes must occur at the source of truth and be synced across.
  3. See Supported user profile attributes for Office 365 provisioning
  4. To sync groups from other directory services and apps to Office 365, configure Group Push. You must first configure provisioning and user assignments before pushing groups to Office 365. See Using Group Push.


  • User Sync and Universal Sync cannot be used with DirSync, Azure Active Directory Sync, or Azure Active Directory Connect.
  • Once you select User Sync or Universal Sync, you can not modify your selection back to Profile Sync.

Related topics

Using Group Push

Provision users to Office 365

Microsoft Office 365 deployment guide