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I have been evaluating Office 365 for several months and have been impressed for the most part (especially with Azure AD integration). I have a few nagging issues, but the one that nobody at Microsoft seems to be able to help me with is In-Place Archiving:

  1. Can't view the "In-Place Archive” folder within Outlook 2016:

    The “In-Place Archive” folder is not visible within my local installation of Outlook 2016. The MS tech that assisted with onboarding stated that the folder would take about a week for the folder to appear in outlook after enabling the feature in the admin panel. I'm still waiting for it to appear two months later.

    After some research, it looks like my plan, Office 365 Business Premium only supports viewing the in-place archive folder in OWA. Apparently you must have the Professional Plus version if want to see the in-place archive folder in BOTH OWA AND Outlook:

    The in-place archive folders are only visible with the Outlook version in the Professional Plus product. Other versions of Outlook will not display the archive folders even though they may be present and enabled.

    Therefore, I looked into switching to the ProPlus Plan, but the site will not allow me to do so.

    Does this mean that Pro Plus is for people that have there own exchange server? Does it also mean that the cheapest plan with support for In-Place Archiving in both OWA and Outlook is Enterprise E3?

 

  1. When searching within OWA, it’s not possible to search within BOTH the primary mailbox and the In-Place Archive.

    When searching the in-place archive in OWA, the UI forces you to choose between your "regular" mailbox and the in-place archive. Is there not a way to search both? How about simply joining the results from a search of each? This really doesn’t make sense to me.

    I've been told that the e-discovery tool would be able to search all of a user’s email, regardless of archiving or not. Is this the only way to do it? Is there a special trick to searching across all of my mail items, regardless of where they are located within Office 365?

 

Sorry for such a long question, and thanks in advance for any help.

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You are correct on most counts. Office Pro Plus is just a different packaging of services from the enterprise tier.

I'm not sure what you are seeing, but if you can't purchase the pro plus SKU thru your tenant I would contact Microsoft. There are some subscriptions that can't be activated in the same tenant, but usually, it's just a configuration thing they can sort out on the back end.

Office Pro Plus has the Outlook version you need. However, it only includes the office client, and onedrive for business (which comes with SharePoint online subscription). If you need mail, skype, etc you should be looking at the E3 SKU which contains the same features as business premium, but also the pro plus Office SKU. In addition, there are some enhanced security controls thrown in there as well, so consider looking at enabling rights management service to be sure you get the most for your money.

As for OWA - that's just the way the interface works at present, there are no settings you can change to modify this behavior.

Edit

As of 6/28/2016 Microsoft is rolling out the ability to view Archives and manage retention tags (personal) in Outlook Business Premium.

  • Ok, thanks for the info. Do you know if searching against both the "regular" mailbox and OWA can be done programmatically? It looks like you can use the OData $search operation with the Office 365 mail API, but I'm not sure if that only connects to the "regular" mailbox. Either way, thank you! – nbb007 Jun 23 '16 at 18:21
  • I'm not sure. But I would shoot a quick ask on Twitter to "@andrewconnell" and "@jthake". Andrew is doing a lot stuff with the API's, and Jeremy Thake is on the office dev team. – Jesus Shelby Jun 23 '16 at 19:51

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