Connecticut State Colleges & Universities
IT Support Center

Microsoft Teams and O365 Groups FAQ

Before creating or using an Office365 Group or Microsoft Team, be sure to read the following:
Office365 Standards

How do I get up and running using Microsoft Teams? View the specific topics on the Microsoft Team's help website or view video tutorials on the Microsoft Team's video training.

Check out the updated FAQ for meetings/calls/Audio Conference PIN info and using chat.



  • How do I decide which to create: A Microsoft Team or an Office365 Group?
  • So you know you need collaboration but not sure where to start. You've heard about O365 Groups and Microsoft Teams. You may have heard that a Microsoft Team contains an O365 Group. So what do you create and how do you create one?

    * If you haven't created the group yet, we suggest creating a Microsoft Team and using the Microsoft Team app for collaboration. Creating a Microsoft Team has you fully using the Microsoft Teams app for all your collaboration. Chatting, conversations, file sharing all occur within the Microsoft Team app. No more cluttering up your email inbox.

    * However, if you already have an Office365 Group and now want to add the collaboration of a Microsoft Team, you can create a Microsoft Team from your O365 Group. Just launch the Teams app, click Teams in the left menu then "Join or create a Team" at the bottom. Refer to our FAQ item for converting an O365 Group to a Microsoft Team.

    Read this article to find out more about O365 Groups vs. Teams.

    Ready to create a Microsoft Team!? Read our FAQ article on creating a Team.

  •  How do I convert an O365 Group to a Microsoft Team aka 'teamify'?
  • If you already are an owner of an Office365 Group and now want a Microsoft Team for collaboration with group members, you can create a Microsoft Team from an O365 Group. Just launch the Teams app and when you create a Microsoft Team, it will ask you if you want to create one from a group you already own. You will need to manually move items from the areas in your O365 Group that are not accessible from inside the Teams app into Teams, so please continue reading:

    • If you already have a OneNote notebook in your group, in order to see it from your Team, you need to add a tab in order to access it. From one of the Team's channels, click the Add button to add a tab:

      Then select OneNote from the list and locate your group's OneNote notebook in the list. By default, they are named <Group's name> Notebook. Select the name and click Save. You will then have a tab to access your OneNote notebook.

    • You will have to manually move content from the original group's document library to one of your team's channels in order to access it from your new Microsoft Team. Microsoft Teams organizes topics by channels. NOTE: Content not in a channel will not be accessible from inside the Team. By default, a Team creates the General channel, but you can create other channels if you wish. To move files from the O365 Group shared document folder to a Team's channel, visit your Microsoft Team's site using SharePoint:

      Once in SharePoint, you'll see you are in your General channel's document library. Simply click Documents to see any files that are in the O365 Group that are not visible from inside your team:

      Then move folders/files you want to be accessible from inside your Team to a channel's folder (for example General).

      Verify you can now access the folders/files by going back to the Team app and look in a channel's files section. You'll see the files are now accessible from within Teams.

      NOTE: Do not use SharePoint to modify folders in a Microsoft Team. If you edit/remove a channel's folder, it makes it inaccessible in your Team.

    • Before you converted your O365 Group to a Microsoft Team, you used an email address to communicate with members. Members may also have been subscribed to the O365 Group and have those emails also go to their inboxes. Now that it is a Microsoft Team, collaboration should be occurring inside Microsoft Teams and members no longer have to clutter up inboxes with messages from the group, instead collaboration should be occurring from inside the Microsoft Teams app.

      So what happens with that email that is associated with the O365 Group (<group name> It still goes to the O365 Group mailbox but it is not accessible from inside the team app (by design) so that collaboration occurs inside Microsoft Teams instead of email.

      However, if you need to have members view the email that is sent to that address from inside Teams (say you publish that address somewhere and non-members send email to it), this workaround may bridge the gap: You will need to send that email to a Team's channel. First, from the O365 portal, launch the Outlook app and scroll down to Groups - Owner. Then enable the setting to auto-subscribe new members so they receive group conversations in their inbox:

      NOTE: If it wasn't already enabled, current members may not be following/subscribed to the group, but new members will be. Members can choose to follow/subscribe to groups so that any emails sent to the group mailbox are also sent to their inboxes. They can also unfollow/unsubscribe from them as well. Just because you have the setting to "auto-subscribe" new members, doesn't mean they can't unsubscribe/unfollow.

      Then, inside Teams, right click the channel and select Get email address:

      and copy the channel's email address. Then, right click the Team's name and select Add member and add the Team's channel (paste just the email address portion, not the name part) to be a member of the Team as a guest. Then, when an email is sent to the O365 Group's email address, it will also go to channel.  Remember to go back to your group and deselect the "Subscribe new members" option if you don't want to auto-subscribe new members.
  •  How do I create a Microsoft Team?
  • BEFORE YOU CREATE A TEAM: You cannot merge two Microsoft Teams together, so make sure before you create a new Microsoft Team that there already isn't one for the same purpose with the same members you intend to invite. For example: If there already is a Microsoft Team named "SVC-GW-XYZ" and you attempt to create another Microsoft Team named "SVC-GW-XYZ", it will simply create a "SVC-GW-XYZ-876" for the new one but it will still use the display name "SVC-GW-XYZ", so you won't know there already was one that existed. Therefore, ask colleagues if a team already exists for your group before creating a new Microsoft Team.

    Make sure you are properly naming all Microsoft Teams according to the Naming Standard. Teams that are not compliant may be deleted/hidden.

    There is lots of info in our FAQ article "How to use a Microsoft Team" that is relevant for using your Microsoft Team once you create it - so make sure you refer to that as well.

    IT departments have a separate process to create "Managed Teams". Managed Teams do not expire and therefore do not require owners to regularly renew them. They also will not have the Self Service prefix "SVC-" applied to their names. O365 Groups/Teams that are not "Managed Teams" are refered to as "Self Service" and will have the activity-based expiration policy and the Self Service prefix (SVC-) prefix applied. NOTE: The "SVC-" naming policy affects all O365 Groups, not just Microsoft Teams. Refer to this Microsoft article about how the naming policy affects other apps.

    Here's how to create a Self-Service team:

    Once you have the Microsoft Teams app installed and you have logged into it, click on Teams in the left panel, then "Join or create a team", then select "Create a team":


    If you'd like to use a particular team type select it, otherwise, choose "Other". Each team type  has slightly different permissions and OneNote notebook types (a Class Notebook for type Class or a Staff Notebook for type Staff).


    Configure your Team's name and description (leave Privacy set to Private, see why here).

    Team name: Please make sure you refer to proper naming standards (which is always a click away when creating your team by clicking the "See your organization's guidelines" link). Examples of teams using proper naming standards are: (TX-RoboticsClub, AS-Biology101Fall2019). Remember that they will become SVC-TX-RoboticsClub or SVC-AS-Biology1010Fall2019 once created.

    Description: Also give your team a proper description.

    Privacy: Very important is setting your team's privacy type. You may think you want your team to be of type "public" but you do not, there are many risks with selecting the privacy type "public": If it's public, it means anyone can view/modify/edit/delete content without joining or even becoming a member. If you think you want a public group - read this FAQ article about public vs. private groups/teams first.

    NOTE: If you already have an O365 Group and are "teamifying" it, then select "Create a team using a group set up by you or CSCU" to teamify your O365 Group. If you haven't already, read this FAQ article about converting an O365 Group to a Microsoft Team. If you have another team you want to copy, select "Create a team using an existing team as a template", then on the next screen you can select what parts you want to copy to the new team.

    Then click Next to create your team.

    Adding members (or not yet)

    At this point, you don't have to add any members initially if you want to customize the Team before adding other members. But if you want to add members at this time you can. When you add members, they will receive an email letting them know you have added them to your Team. To add System Office/CCC users, just type their name. For anyone else, you will need to add them by their email address. Remember to always add CSCU University members by their CSCU email address and not a personal (yahoo/gmail) address. Refer to this FAQ about external guests.

    Also, we recommend making at least one other member an owner of your Team so there are at least 2 owners for your Team. You can do this by toggling the member from "member" to "owner". We do not recommend having more than a very few owners of a team.


    When you are done adding members, click close.


    If you want to be notified about various things happening in Teams, make sure you enable Team notifications (check out the FAQ article on How to use Teams for how to setup notifications). You may want to let members know they can setup channel notifications so they are alerted when there is activity:


    We recommend looking at your Team's settings (Manage Team - Settings) and configuring them from the start before members start using your team. We highly recommend you review Member permissions and Guest permissions and select what is appropriate. You may want to disable some permissions your members have by default such as creating private channels or deleting them.

    That's it! Your Team has been created.

  •  What are the limitations in Microsoft Teams?
  • Refer to this Microsoft link for any limitions (number of members, teams, channels, meetings, etc) you could run into when using Microsoft Teams.

  •  What do I have to know about group expiration/renewal/deletion?
  • We have implemented an activity-based expiration policy as well as regularly performing cleanup of groups/teams that do not currently comply with policies/standards/usage (i.e. volume, activity, naming policies). This consists of the following:

    • changing non-compliant public groups/teams to be private
    • hiding non-compilant groups/teams from the address book
    • identifying specific groups/teams that will be deleted or added to the expiration policy

    Did you receive a notification that your group/team was deleted? If you do not need the group/team that was deleted, nothing needs to be done as it has been deleted. However, if someting is needed from the group/team that was deleted and it has been less than 30 days since it was deleted, open a ticket with your IT department to request that it be restored. Changes may need to be made to recovered groups/teams so they are compliant with O365 standards. IMPORTANT: More than 30 days after a team has been deleted, it cannot be recovered by anyone.

    Owners of groups/teams with no activity for 6 months will be notified that your group/team is due to expire and needs to be renewed. If not renewed (either by activity occurring or an owner manually renewing it), the group/team will be deleted. Owners can still restore a deleted group up to 30 days after it has been deleted. 30 days after it has been deleted, it is permanently deleted and cannot be recovered by anyone.

    Owners of Micrsoft Teams will see renewal notifications in their team activity feed and an icon will display next to the team name indicating it is due to expire.

    You can always go to Manage Team - Settings to see exactly when your team will expire if no new activity auto-renews it. 


    Owners of O365 groups that have not yet been teamified and have no activity will receive an email stating when their group is due to expire. Owners will receive reminder emails 30, 15 and 1 day before the expiration date which will include a link to renew or delete the group if the group is not needed any longer. You will also receive a final email a day after it has been deleted with a link to restore the group if needed.

  •  What are private channels in a Team?
  • Private channels are just that - private channels that the owner of the private channel can specify which members of the team are members of the private channel. If a team member is not a  member of the private channel, they won't see the channel listed or be able to interact with the channel.

    Start with this article from Microsoft about Private channels which were introduced in 2018 to see what private channels is all about.

    IMPORTANT: As an owner of a team, you may want to disable the ability for members to create private channels in your team at all. The setting is under Manage Team - Settings - Member Permissions.

    Owners of a team can view all channels including private channels by going to Manage Team - Channels. However, if a team owner is not a member of a private channel, they won't be able to see the content of the private channel, but would still be able to see it listed and can delete it.

  •  How do I use the chat feature in the Teams app?
  • There are different types of conversations in Microsoft Teams. There are channel conversations that occur inside a Microsoft Team and there are private chats (either 1:1 or group chats). You can use the Microsoft Team app to participate in 1:1 chat or group chats without ever being inside a team if you wish. Here's some more information:

    Channel conversations (in a Team channel) can be seen by all members of the team. However, in private 1:1 chats or group chats using the Chat icon in the left menu, only the people in the chat can see your messages. How to start a chat in Teams

    To start a private 1:1 chat - click the New Chat icon and type in the name of the person you wish to chat with:

    NOTE: If the person you wish to chat with is NOT a CCC/System Office user, they may still show up when you search for them. This means they may already be a guest in our tenant or have an established connection.

    You can chat with:

    • System Office and CCC faculty/staff/students (i.e. accounts in our Microsoft tenant).
    • CSU or CharterOak users****
    • other external guests (i.e. Yahoo/Gmail/UCONN, etc) who are members of a Team that you are also a member of. NOTE: Their Team environment needs to be setup to allow external guest access and their account needs to be setup to use Teams (vs. Skype for Business).

    ****CSU/Charter Oak users are external to our Microsoft tenant (the CCC and System Office) and have different features than other external guests (i.e. Yahoo/Gmail/UCONN, etc.) due to established connections we have with their Microsoft tenants:

    • It is recommended to communicate with CSCU and CharterOak users from inside a Microsoft Team versus chatting outside of a team.
    • When searching for a CSU/CharterOak user in Microsoft Teams, always enter their full email address (don't enter their last name or username only), you may see 2 results returned. One would be a guest account in our tenant and the other would be their account in their tenant.
    • If you see an entry with the word External in a box (see example below) and no Chat, Files, Activity tabs after it; you cannot group chat with that account but they do not have to switch from their tenant to see the chats. This is easier for them but has less features as you can't group chat with this account and others at the same time. The benefit is that you do not have to wait for them to get an email notification that you are trying to reach them.
    • If you see an entry with (Guest) followed by Chat, Files and Activity tabs, it is an external guest account in our tenant. You can group chat with this user, but they might not see your chat until they receive an email that you are trying to reach them. They will have to switch tenants to our Microsoft tenant to chat with you. They will have these accounts if they are members of Teams in our tenant. The benefit is that they would be able to see any Teams in our tenant they are a member of after they switch tenants.

    You cannot use chat to chat with someone's personal email address (i.e. @gmail, @yahoo, etc.) who isn't already a member of a Team that you are a member of. To see if you can chat with them, enter their email address into the chat field. You will see the following error if you cannot chat with them:

    When creating a chat (with users in our tenant), if you want to add more people to your chat, simply type their names into the To: field:

    Once you have a group chat of 2 or more people (not including yourself), you can rename the group chat if you wish. Note that the group chat is renamed for all members of the group chat, not just for you:

    For group chats (chats with 3 or more people), you can also add more people to the chat at any time using the "add people" button on the side. As you see you have options as to what the new people added to your group chat have access to in regards to the chat history:

    Then chat away at the bottom.

    There are many icons below the chat line, check them out - the first one (the A with the pencil) allows you to use full formatting in your chat:

    NOTE: In addition to chatting with the person, you can also do a video call, a voice-only call, share your screen with them, add other users or make the chat a pop out window:

    NOTE: Sharing your screen is not available if you are using your phone or from a browser:

    To easily find contacts you frequently chat with, you can organize them in Chat - Contacts:

    Here's a few video tutorials on how to chat and make calls using Teams. 

    Here's additonal information on using chat in Microsoft Teams.

  •  How do I use meetings or calls in Microsoft Teams?
  • TIP for organizers of meetings not in a Team channel: Watch this video to stop attendees from muting/removing other participants. Refer to this as well for more info on meeting roles.

    TIP for recording meetings: Refer to this Microsoft link for all you need to know about recording Team meetings.

    October 2020 Update: Meeting recordings are now being stored in OneDrive/SharePoint in the Recordings folder. Use this link to help with playing and sharing Team meeting recordings. NOTE: That is just the first phase of Micrsoft's migration to the new Stream product. If you want to learn about Microsoft's migration from Classic Streams (what it currently is) to the new Stream coming in 2021, refer to this link as to what to expect going forward.

    How to create a meeting in Teams:

    1. Inside the Teams client, click on Calendar on the left-hand side menu.

    2. In the calendar on the right-hand side, click on the block for the time you want to meet. The new meeting window will appear. In this example, it will be creating a meeting for Monday at 9 AM.

    3. Add a title, attendees (both required and/or optional), and select the start and end time of the meeting. NOTE - You can add attendees who are not a member of the Team involved in the meeting.

    4. If you want to schedule a recurring meeting use the drop-down menu to select the correct recurrence.

    5. If the meeting is associated with an existing MS Team (as opposed to a personal meeting), click on the Add channel field and select the correct channel from your list of Teams. You'll need to click on the Team to view the channels. If you are unsure of the channel, it is most likely the General channel.

    6. Fill out the meeting details in the Details box. If your accounnt has been enabled to use dial-in numbers, it will appear in the meeting details after the meeting is finished being created and is saved. You will see them in the invite.

    7. Click Save in the upper right-hand corner to save your meeting. The selected attendees will be sent an email invite.

    8. After you create a meeting, we suggest you go back to the meeting and modify meeting options. See HOT TIP above on how to stop attendees from muting/removing other participants.

    The locations for steps 3 through 7 are noted in the image below.

    How to schedule a meeting on behalf of another user

    This article contains step-by-step instructions for how to schedule a meeting on behalf of another user.

    How to join a meeting

    Dial-in numbers are now available if you schedule your meetings using Teams. Attendees can either join using Microsoft Teams (top link in the emailed invite) or use the dial-in numbers listed and then enter the conference ID included:


    During the meeting, meeting organizers will see the call-in users that are calling in using phones and will then need to admit them into the meeting:

    NOTE: Meeting organizers who join the call using the dial-in numbers (i.e. not from Microsoft Teams), will need to use the PIN sent to them from Microsoft. Look in your inbox for an email like this:

    Users can reset their own audio conference PIN here as well as using the Reset PIN link from inside a Teams invite.

    Lots of topics on meetings/calls can be found on this link such as settig up a meeting, joining a meeting, making a call, recording meetings, etc. All should be done from within Microsoft Teams app.  This link also has answers to common audio conference questions or watch this video tutorial.

    However, if you have Microsoft Teams installed on a Windows desktop and are using Outlook - you may notice the "New Teams Meeting" add-in:

    NOTE: This allows you to create a Microsoft Teams private meeting from inside Outlook but you cannot use it to create a Team channel meeting - this is only for creating meetings with specific particpants. Also, meeting options are not currently available using this feature, therefore, we still recommend creating Team meetings from within the Teams app.

    External guests will be able to participate in meetings, but their experience will be different. Refer to the external guest FAQ for more info.

  •  Where can I go for more information on applicable policies?
  • Refer to this link for the State of CT's Record Management Program (data retention policies).

    Refer to this link for CSCU IT Policies.

  •  What do I need to know about Live Events?
  • Live events are a subset of Teams Meetings and can be scheduled in nearly the same manner. However, Live events have very different uses. While Teams Meetings are designed for collaboration, and to foster discussions amongst participants, Live events are designed for a small set of users to broadcast out presentations and screen sharing to large online audiences.

    Live Events will be available for approved users to create private, organization-wide, or completely public events. A Service desk request will need to be made to allow Live events for a user.

    Users that are allowed to create Live Events should refer to this document: Managing Microsoft Teams Live Events for details.

  •  Can I use Outlook 2016 to manage my O365 Group or Microsoft Team?
  • It depends:

    When managing a Team: You definitely do not want to use Outlook when for a Microsoft Team. Always use the Teams client when working with your Microsoft Team. Note that there are differences between a team that started out as an O365 Group and was "teamified" vs. a team that was created as a Team to start. The difference is what's visible from Outlook and the address book. Refer to our FAQ item for converting an O365 Group to a Microsoft Team

    When managing an O365 Group: You potentially may be able to use Outlook for an O365 Group. Here's why: Most functions/features should be available from Outlook 2016 as documented by Microsoft, but whether a feature or function is accessible from your particular install of Outlook cannot be answered. We have seen situations where the Create Group icon in the ribbon is not present as well as adding external guests as members of a group does not work. Our advice is to use OWA to manage your O365 Group. The documentation below shows how it should work from Outlook 2016 if your install supports it.

  •  How do I Rename an Office365 Group/Microsoft Team?
  • It is not currently possible to rename the underlying Group/Team's SharePoint URL, so when you are creating your group/team, select the name carefully making sure to follow the Naming Standards.

    You can however rename the display name of your group/team, it still needs to adhere to the group standards. NOTE: Changing the display name does not change the underlying site name (the SharePoint URL) nor the group's email address, that's why selecting the right name when you first create the group/team is important. Multiple groups/teams can have the same display name.

    When you rename a group/team, the self-service prefix "SVC-" will be applied back to the Display Name.

  •  Can my group/team use my college's domain  (i.e. or
  • No, all groups will have the for the email domain and cannot use another domain.

    The group's site or SharePoint URL will be:<group name>

    NOTE: If another group or team already exists with the same name, Microsoft will append your group name with numbers but the displayed name will still show your origially chosen name. For example, if you named your group SVC-TR-Robotics and there already was a group named SVC-TR-Robotics, your group's site may be: sites/svc-tr-robotics546. The best way to find out your Team's URL is to go to your General channel and then go the channel's SharePoint site and look at the URL.

  •  What do I need to know about Public/Private groups/teams?
  • Public teams are not recommended due to the read/write permission that anyone in our organization has to the content of your team. What this means is: Anyone in our tenant (all faculty/staff/students) have read/write/modify/delete access to everything in your Team if changes are not made to the default SharePoint permissons for members. They do not have to be members of your team to do this. And they are open to join your team and get member permissions at any time.

    Some may not realize their teams/groups are public! If you created your group from Outlook 2016 using the Group button, it is a public group by default:

    Public Groups/Teams
    • All content available in the document library can be accessed by anyone in the organization without being a member of the group. That means they can edit/delete content/folders as well!
    • If you have not locked down the permissions given to members by editing your Team settings, these are what you are allowing anyone in our tenant to do to your team:

    • O365 Group conversations can be seen by anyone in the organization without being a member of the group.
    • Anyone can add themselves as a member and can follow/subscribe to receive emails/notifications to be sent to them.
    • Any faculty/staff/student can go to "join or create a team" from the Microsoft Team app and type in the name of a public team and join it. They can also browse all public teams/groups looking for what teams/groups are public.

    Private Groups/Teams
    • Are only accessible to members of the group (if specific permissions have not been granted by the owners to other users/groups)

    IMPORTANT: You most likely want your team/group to be only available to members - not by anyone in the organization, so you will want it to be private. Many have made their teams public thinking they want people to view their team's content not knowing that "public" means everyone in the CCC tenant is able to read/write/edit/delete all content without specifically changing SharePoint permissions.

    To change an O365 Group's privacy setting, in the O365 portal in OWA, select the group and go to your group settings:

    To change a Microsoft Team's privacy setting, in the Team client, to the right of your Team name, click "..." and then go to Edit team and change it from Public to Private:

    If your Team needs to be public, but with members not having read/write to the document library, first we suggest you remove the following Member permissions (Manage Team - Settings tab):

    Then to open the SharePoint site and change member access to "view only":

    Go to the root of the document library by clicking on Documents:

    Click on Manage Access:

    Then change your Team's Member group to "Can view":

  •  What does it mean to be listed/hidden from the email address list?
  • The following apply when a group/team's email address is listed in the email address list:

    • The group's name and email address are searchable using the Discover Groups feature.
    • The group's name and email address are searchable when entering text on an email's recipient fields (to, cc, bcc) or by searching the email address list.
    • Anyone in our organization can see the group's name, email address, description and the list of owners and members.
    • Anyone can send an email to the group's email address even without being a member. NOTE: If members follow/subscribe to receive email in their inbox, they will also receive the email in their inboxes when an email is sent to the group.
    • Anyone can request to join a group. The group owner does not have to accept it - but they can send it.

    When a group is hidden from the email address list, it is not discoverable by searching for the name.  However, if someone knows the group's email address, they can send email to the group whether it is private or public or whether they are members or not members.

    NOTE: If your group needs to have a member "send as" or "send on behalf of" the group, the group cannot be hidden from the email address list. Granting a member the ability to "send as" or "send on behalf of" is not configurable by the owner, it can only be set by request.

    In the summer 2018 - Microsoft made a change that any new Microsoft Team that is created is now hidden from the email address list as well as not being displayed in Outlook under Groups. This is by design as Teams communication should be inside the Team and they want to move away from using Email. However, if you "teamified" a group, it will still be visible in the email address list and in Outlook. You can submit a request to hide it from both after you have "teamified" it though.

  •  There seems to be so many ways to access my group or team's features (mail, documents, calendar). What's the easiest?
  • Microsoft Team

    A Microsoft Team should be accessed using the Teams app. You can access the Team's SharePoint site - but be aware if you modify the team channel folder strucutre from the SharePoint view, you could make channels inaccessible. Always modify your Team's document library from the Teams app and members of a Team should use the Microsoft Team app to access the team.

    O365 Group

    An Office365 Group has many components (mail, documents, calendar, OneNote notebook, Planner, SharePoint site) and each component can be accessed through a variety of products (Outlook 2016, files can be synced to your workstation using the OneDrive sync client, Office365 portal, individual mobile apps, etc.) making it appear more complex than it needs to be because there are so many ways to access!

    You can access all the parts of the O365 Group by visiting your group's site. The URL to your site can be found in many places. Your group's site is always available by logging into the O365 Portal, then launching Outlook:

    Once in Outlook, under the Groups heading, click on your group, then click the ... and then select site:

    Bookmarking the site will help you quickly go directly to your site. It will be in the form:<group name>. Sharing that link with non members will show them a "You need permission to access this site." warning as only members will be able to access your site.

    When you invited members to join your group, they received an intro email welcoming them to the group. That email contains valuable links - one of them containing the link directly to your site:


    Mail (i.e. Conversations): You can access your Office365 Group's mail conversations from inside Outlook 2016, O365 portal from any browser or from a mobile device that has the Outlook app installed. Note that external guests will not be able to access mail conversations from your group's site. They will be sent an individual email to their email address and will not be able to see "conversations" as CCC\SO members do.

    Members that are not external guests, have the choice to unsubscribe themselves from receiving email in their inbox and instead only reading email sent to the group by looking in the group's mailbox. They can do this by unsubscribing from the group when using Outlook 2016:


    Documents (i.e. Files): You can go directly to the SharePoint site by clicking Files:


    Calendar: You can access your group's shared calendar from inside Outlook's calendar as you would any shared calendar. Note that external guests will not be able to access the shared calendar. They will be sent calendar invites to their email address and will not be able to see a shared calendar as other members do.

  •  Is there an app for that?
  • To download Microsoft Teams app, visit

    Compare Office365 Group features on different platforms (Outlook 2016, OWA, iOS, Android, etc.)

    Microsoft retired the standalone Groups app and incorporated O365 Groups into their Outlook app.

  •  How do I work with my Team's shared calendar?
  • Microsoft continues to work on a solution to natively display the Team's calendar. Currently, if you want to display a team calendar, you have to manually do it. There are 2 different methods to this.

    Method 1: Create a tab that will link to this team's calendar. This will display the user's O365 calendar and this Team's calendar. Here's how:

    • Go to your Team's channel and click the + to add a new tab and select Website from the list of tabs you can add:/br>
    • Name your tab: "Calendar" and paste the address to your Group calendar using this form:<insert group name>

      NOTE: If you don't know your team's O365 Group calendar name - open the channel's site in SharePoint and look at the url, your team name appears after "/sites/":

      This is what it will look like:

      The user will then be able to check/uncheck any calendars they want to display:

    Method 2: The other method is by creating a SharePoint page that displays the calendar entries. This will display a list of calendar events, not a month view. Here's how:

    • Go to your team's SharePoint site and click Home, click + New, select Page as the type:

    • At bottom, click "Create page".
    • Name your page whatever you want, for example Calendar and add a web part to the new page:
    • When the selection comes up to select the type of web part you want to add, search for calendar then click on Group Calendar:

    • Go back to your Team's channel and click the + to add a new tab and select SharePoint from the list of tabs you can add:

    • Select the page you added from the list of available pages:

    • The list of calendar entries will be displayed in Teams:

    • Add calendar entries by clicking on Calendar, creating a new meeting and selectinig your Team channel:

  •  How do I work with my O365 Group's shared calendar?
  • Looking for how to work with a Team's calendar? Check out this FAQ item when working with a Team's calendar.

    When working with O365 Group's calendars - remember that an O365 Group's calendar is not accessible to external guests. They will get invites emailed to them but won't be able to access it from the Calendar link. To separate your own personal calendar entries from a group (or multiple groups you may belong to), instead of creating a calendar entry in your own calendar and inviting others, create it in the group's shared calendar. Members of your group will then receive a calendar invite (external guests will receive it in their inbox) and they can also separate calendar invites from you and from the shared group. Remember that external guests access calendar invites different.

    If you simply want to view the group's calendar by itself from Outlook 2016, browse to your group found under Groups in the left menu and select your group. It will bring up the group's inbox. At the top, select Calendar and it will bring up just the group's calendar by itself:


    You can also view multiple calendars together in one view in Outlook as well. First you need to add the calendar to your favorites. Scroll down to your group listed under Groups in the left menu. Right click on the group and click "Add to Favorites":

    Then, when you go to your calendar view, it will be listed as a separate calendar entry under "My Calendars" that you can then enable in your calendar view by putting a check mark next to the calendars you want to view:

    When you have more than 1 calendar checked, they show up next to each other. To create a single view of all your calendars, click the arrows at the top to create a single view of all calendars (they are visually merged but are still separate calendars). Each time you add another calendar to your view, you can click the arrows to merge them or unmerge them into/from a single calendar view:

    This is a single view of 3 calendars. Each calendar is a different color. To create an event in a specific calendar, click the calendar's tab to change the focus to that calendar and then create your event as you normally would.

    Group members will then receive a calendar invite because you created the event in the shared group calendar. You can see exactly which calendar you are adding an event to when you create the calendar entry:

    Here is some additional information on working with your shared calendar: Microsoft's documentation on how to schedule a meeting in the group's calendar

  •  What do I need to know about co-authoring documents with others?
  • You can co-author documents in both Office Online and in Office products installed on your workstation. NOTE: You must be using at least version 2016 to co-author documents and co-authoring is only supported in apps that support co-authoring (Word, PowerPoint, Excel) and only with modern file formats (.docx, .pptx and .xlsx).

    Microsoft provides several resources for helping you co-author documents with others:

    We highly suggest using Word's Track Changes feature when co-authoring documents as we are aware that when OneDrive for Business saves versions of the document to the file's Version History that all changes made during co-authoring are saved as one version.  Microsoft has a video that shows you how this works.

    If you are using Word's Track Changes features, you won't see markup when you edit the document from Teams or using Word Online:

      To use Track Changes markup/features, when you click Edit from Teams, select Open in Desktop App:

  •  Can I be alerted when an item is modified?
  • Yes! If you want to be alerted when a file/folder is modified, follow these instructions to setup an alert for SharePoint Online document libraries, O365 Group or Team sites.

  •  Can I stay a member of a group but stop receiving email in my inbox for emails sent to the group?
  • Microsoft Teams

    You can follow a channel to receive direct notifications whenever there's new channel activity. Use the Activity filter: Following to see activity in channels you are following. Here's more info from Microsoft on following and favoriting channels.

    O365 Groups

    In Outlook 2016, it's called "Subscribe/Unsubscribe" and in the O365 portal, it's called "Following/Not Following".

    In Outlook 2016, go to your group under Groups in the left menu and then click "Membership" in the top menu bar to toggle between "Subscribe" and "Unsubscribe":


    In the O365 portal's mail, with the group selected, it is "Following" or "Stop Following" to toggle between the two options:

  •  My group's email address and SharePoint site is different than my group's name. Why?
  • When creating your team/group, if you name it using any special character other than dash or underscore (- or _) then those characters will not appear in the email address or the site's file location.

    For example, if you name it "Black & White", the email address will be and the site's SharePoint site will be:

    You may also have named yours to be the same name that another one already had - so yours will be the name of your team plus some random characters so that they are unique.

  •  How do I change my group/team site's home page?
  • Your Group/Team's home page is a SharePoint team site. Refer to Microsoft's documentation for information on how to change the SharePoint site.

  •  How do I use an Office365 Group?
    • How to join a group
    • How to delete a group
    • How to have a group conversation (how to reply just to the sender or reply to the group)
    • How to customize your group's SharePoint site
    • Adding and removing group members
    • Members can choose to leave or unsubscribe from a group - Your members can stay a member of the group but unsubscribe/stop following a group/team from receiving group emails in their inbox. Or they can choose to leave the group altogether if they want and no longer will be members of the group/team.
    • Another great Microsoft document that summarizes how to get more out of Office365 Groups.
    • Do you want to have your group's files synced to your workstation? Here's how to sync Office365 Group/Microsoft Team files to your PC using OneDrive for Business. This is a great way to make the files available in your Office365 Group or Microsoft Team available right on your PC. Use the OneDrive for Business client to sync your group's files just as you did to sync your OneDrive for Business files.
    • You can manage your group's documents better by going directly to your group's site versus managing them from the "Files" section. The "Files" section just lists all your files - they are not grouped into their folders. However, when you go to the "Documents" section of your group's site, you can see the folder structure, manage permissions, share files and more. Here's how you get to your group's site:

      When in Outlook 2016 on your desktop, you will first click "Files" to get to the Home page of your site, but then just click "Documents":

  •  How do I use Microsoft Teams?
  • This is very important when using a Microsoft Team: Because part of a Microsoft Team is an Office365 Group, there are some things you need to know about the difference and why you may not see content when it's a Microsoft Team vs. an Office365 Group:
    • You cannot merge two different Microsoft Teams, so make sure before you create a new Microsoft Team that there already isn't one for the same purpose with the same members you intend to invite. There is no way to move conversations, chats or Planner tasks manually.
    • When a Microsoft Team is deleted, so is the underlying Office365 Group.
    • A Microsoft Team contains "channels" - think of them as your team's topics. Each channel has it's own email address, email conversations and files in order to organize your discussions. Email conversations that occur within a Microsoft Team channel are not visible from Outlook 2016 or OWA mail. As well as the opposite, you cannot see Microsoft Team conversations from Outlook 2016 or OWA mail. You can only use the Microsoft Team app to see channel conversations.
    • A Microsoft Team channel's email address does not use the Office365 Group format (i.e. - instead a channel's email address uses the format: <unique channel id number>
    • If email is sent to the Microsoft Team's connected Office365 Group (<teamname>, members will not see it when they look at the team from inside the Teams app. You ONLY see the conversations that are in a Microsoft Team's channel. Each channel has it's own unique email address (<channel id number> and is what is used for conversations per channel.
    • Make sure you are being alerted the way you want to be alerted with activity notifications in Teams. First, set the notification types you want to receive and when you are not active in Teams and want to receive an email, set Missed activity emails to "As soon as possible". You also can go to a particular channel and enable "Channel notifications" so you receive notifications for important channel activity.
    • If files are not placed in a channel's file folder, they will not be accessible when you look at it from inside the Teams app. To avoid confusion, files should only be placed in a channel's file folder. Do not rename or delete channel folders. If you go to your Team's SharePoint site and view the Document Library, you will see each channel's folder and will be able to manage the files. You can create folders inside a channel's folder as well.
    • If you create a meeting in the Team's connected group's calendar from Outlook 2016, it will not have all the functionality of a meeting that was created from inside the Team's app. To get all the functionality of a Microsoft Team meeting, it must be created from inside the Team app.
  •  How do external guests access Microsoft Teams in our tenant?
  • CSU and CharterOak users should be using their instutition email address (i.e. not a private Yahoo/Gmail account) when chatting/being invited to a Team in our Microsoft tenant.

    If a non-CSCU external guest doesn't already have a Microsoft Account associated with their email, they would first need to create one by visiting and clicking on the Create One link:

    Once they have created a Microsoft Account that is associated with the email address that was invited to the O365 Group/Microsoft Team, they will be able to access the group/team.

    If this is the first time they are joining a SO/CCC Microsoft Team, they will need to accept permissions for accessing the team before they can participate as a member of the team:

    NOTE: If the external guest user's account is in another Microsoft tenant (i.e. CSU/CharterOak/UCONN, etc) they will need to switch tenants when they access teams in other organizations. The other tenant names will appear in the upper right corner of the Teams interface:

    The System Office/CCC Microsoft tenant is named "CSCU". However, each CSU and Charter Oak belongs to their own Microsoft tenant. They will see other tenants listed there if they belong to teams in those tenants. If users from other tenants are trying to reach them, they will have to swith tenants to see those teams/chats.

    If you invite a CSU/Charter Oak user to a team in our tenant, the email notification they receive does not automatically send them to our tenant, they will need to know they have to switch tenants to access a team in our tenant. We advise letting them know this information.

    The next FAQ item explains the diffference between what an external guest and a System Office or CCC Faculty/Staff/Student can access.

  •  How does external guest access differ from a CCC or System Office Faculty/Staff/Student?
  • External guests are accounts that are not a System Office or CCC Faculty/Staff/Student account (i.e. that don't end in * or *  NOTE: Even though our Microsoft tenant is named "CSCU", it does not encompass all CSCU institutions, just the System Office and the CCCs.

    Accounts from other CSCU institutions (CCSU, ECSU, WCSU, SCSU and Charter Oak) are considered external guests as they belong to their own Microsoft tenant. You will need to add/invite their CSCU account as a member and they will use their CSCU Microsoft Account to login (i.e. or, etc.) 

    For other users outside of CSCU: You can also add their email addresses to your group/team (i.e. yahoo/gmail, etc). They will need to have a Microsoft Account associated with the email address you invite. If they don't already have one, they can create one by visiting: and clicking on the Create one link.

    Microsoft Teams

    To add an external guest to your Microsoft Team, simply enter their full email address when adding members. This is especially important for CSU/CharterOak users, do not search just by last name:

    When you click "Add user as a guest" you will then be able to add them to your team:

    They will receive an email with a link to open Microsoft Teams:


    Once they have launched the Teams app and accepted the permissions:

    they will be able to join in on Team activities.

    We highly recommend letting CSU/Charter Oak users know that the team is in the CSCU tenant and they will need to switch tenants to access the team. They might not realize the team is not listed in their tenant. They may have to log out and back in to have the tenant dropdown show the CSU organization. Going forward, when they have activity in another tenant, the tenant dropdown will show a red icon letting them know they need to switch tenants.

    Currently, External guests:

    • Can use the Microsoft Teams app but will have a different experience.
    • Can use the chat feature - but they can only chat with people who are in a team that the external guest is a member of.
    • May be able to use 1:1 chat to chat with external guests that are not in a team you are in BUT it is dependent on their Team settings and may not be reachable by chat if their settings are not setup to use Teams. You may see something like this:
    • Does not have access to the Calendar or Calls icons in the left menu, but will receive emails for meetings and can create Meet Now meetings in a Team channel
    • Cannot be an owner of or add members to a team.
    • Cannot browse/search/join/create teams. They need to be added as a member of a team to access a team.

    O365 Groups

    To add an external guest to your O365 Group, follow these instructions by using the O365 Portal (don't use the Outlook 2016 app) and access your group, then click the members tab.

    External guests have limited access to an Office365 group than CCC and System Office Faculty/Staff/Students. External guests will receive an email with instructions on how to access your group when they are invited. All of the external guest's interactions occur via email or by visiting the site's URL, they do not access the group from Outlook or from the OWA group interface. It may be helpful for external guests to save the "Welcome email" from your group as it contains links they will use to get access to the group's files.

    Currently, external guests:

    • Cannot browse our O365 groups
    • Will not see the group listed under "groups" in their inbox - they will only see groups from their own organization
    • Cannot add or remove group members from the group
    • Cannot view the group calendar - (they will get calendar events via email instead)
    • Cannot modify calendar events
    • Cannot visit the Conversations tab from the group's site - (instead, they will receive email and can reply-to-all to reply to the group)

    "Inviting guests" means adding them as a member of your group. Once they are members of your group, they will have access to all of the group's documents. You will not have to "share" documents or folders with members of your group to provide them access to documents.

    NOTE: Using the "invite members" link should be used only to invite members of our organization (i.e. not external guests) to join your group:


    Refer to this very good resource to learn more about External Guest access to an Office365 Group.