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Accessing Domain Emails: Office 365 vs. Doteasy

Your Doteasy web hosting plan comes with email services. You can easily create customized domain email addresses. In addition to a webmail interface, you can also configure your email client, such as Outlook or Mac Mail, to access your domain email messages.

But if you are a power-email user and need advanced email hosting capabilities, you also have the option to set up your domain email accounts with your Office 365 account.

What is Office 365?

Office 365 is a subscription plan that includes access to a suite of cloud-based Microsoft Office applications. 

Office 365 comes in different plans and tiers, such as personal, home, student and business. Basic, standard features include full Office desktop apps, mobile apps for Android and iOS, OneDrive storage, Skype minutes and more. 

How is Office 365 different from Office 2016 (or Office 2013)?

Office 2016 is sold as a one-time purchase – you pay a single up-front cost for the Office applications to be used on a single device. When you purchase Office 2016, you get all of the included applications, like Excel and Word. But your purchase doesn’t include any updates when new features are released. You only get security updates. 

Office 365 is a subscription service that includes the latest version of Office, which is currently Office 2016. You will continue to receive automatic feature updates and upgrades, including major upgrades to future versions. With Office 365, you can install the Office applications on up to 5 devices, including Macs, PCs, tablets and phones. Also included in the subscription is free Skype minutes, Exchange Online hosted email services and 1TB of OneDrive cloud storage per user, for up to 5 users. 

Office 365 offers Exchange Online for domain email accounts

In addition to the Outlook email application, Office 365 also comes with Exchange Online, a hosted email service. If you want to create and use your custom domain email addresses on your Office 365 account, you will need to use Exchange Online. 

Features:

  • 50GB mailbox storage per user
  • Send messages up to 150MB in size
  • Outlook support – including supported versions of Outlook email client, web-based Outlook and Outlook app for iOS and Android
  • Inbox management with Clutter
  • Document collaboration via OneDrive
  • Shared calendar and contacts
  • Anti-malware and anti-spam protection via Exchange Online Protection

Find our more the features included in Exchange Online.

Is using Exchange Online better than using the default Doteasy email services?

While you do get more email storage and more advanced spam filtering tools, using Exchange Online is not free. This means, in additional to paying for your Doteasy web hosting services (which email is already included as part of the package), you will need to pay an additional subscription with Exchange Online.

In most cases, Doteasy email service is quite sufficient as it comes with unlimited email accounts, POP3 and IMAP access, SMTP access, email forwarding, aliases and auto-responders, spam and virus protection and a choice between 2 webmail interfaces - Horde and RoundCube - that you can easily switch back and forth at any time you want without losing any emails. The Horde webmail interface comes with tools for calendar, address book, contacts management, tasks, notes, file and bookmarks sharing.

Exchange Online is a cloud-based email hosting service. You can use Exchange Online on multiple devices – whenever your computer, tablet or mobile device connects to your Exchange Online account, OneDrive and Outlook will sync. This means that any changes to your files, calendars, contacts and email will be reflected in both the cloud and the device. 

You can achieve this synchronization on Doteasy with the IMAP access. If you have configured your email clients and devices to use the IMAP protocol, your emails will be synchronized between your mail server and your devices.

One important note is that setting up your domain email with Office 365/Exchange Online requires you to make changes to your domain DNS zone files, which can be done via your Doteasy Member Zone. But we don’t recommend making any changes to your domain DNS zone files unless you are completely comfortable with working with DNS zone files. Even a small changes, intended or accidental, will affect your website and email services. It typically takes 24-48 hours for changes to take effect, including necessary changes to restore your website or email back to pre-change state.

So, before you proceed with setting up your domain email services with Office 365, take a look at your Doteasy email services and give it a try first. If you need advanced enterprise-level email hosting services that is beyond the offerings of Doteasy, you are always welcomed to use Office 365 and if you need help with making the necessary DNS changes, just contact us and we will gladly assist you. 

I want to use Office 365 for my domain email hosting. What will happen to my existing Doteasy email services?

If you want to use Office 365 for your domain email hosting, all you need to do is make the necessary DNS changes as per Microsoft’s instructions. Once you have set up your domain email accounts with Office 365 and once the DNS changes have taken effect, all emails sent to your domain email addresses will be handled by Microsoft and accessible via the Office 365/Exchange Online web interface. Your domain emails will no longer reach the Doteasy mail servers.

However, because website and email hosting services are bundled together into one Doteasy hosting plan, we will not be able to cancel or refund the email portion of your hosting plan. Your Doteasy email services will remain in active state as long as your hosting plan is active and paid. Don’t worry, this will not interfere with your Office 365 email functionality - your Microsoft mail servers will be the only ones handling your domain emails. 

The main advantage of this is that if you want to transfer your email services back to Doteasy, you can do so at any time – all you need to do is simply revert the DNS changes (ie. create the MX record to point your email hosting back to Doteasy and remove the Office 365’s MX record).