A hybrid deployment provides a unified email experience for your Office 365 deployment. It enables companies with mailboxes in their on-premises Exchange Server environment and companies who have Exchange Online mailboxes to find one another in the global address list (GAL), and to send, receive, and reply to email regardless of which system is hosting their mailbox.
A hybrid deployment can be either Exchange 2013-based or Exchange 2010-based. Both Exchange 2013 CU2 and Exchange 2010 SP3 include support for hybrid deployments using the Hybrid Configuration wizard, components designed to help you easily configure hybrid deployments. Used stand-alone, or together with the Exchange Deployment Assistant, this wizard provides Exchange administrators with a streamlined process to create and configure a hybrid deployment between on-premises Exchange and Office 365 organizations.
A hybrid deployment provides these advantages:
- Exchange Online users and on-premises users can share free/busy calendar data.
- Possibility to use the Exchange Admin Center (EAC) with Exchange 2013 or the Exchange Management Console (EMC) with Exchange 2010 to manage both the Exchange Online and on-premises Exchange mail environments.
- Powerful and familiar Exchange management tools to move users to Exchange Online.
- Outlook profiles are automatically updated to the Exchange Online environment
- No need to manually reconfigure Outlook profiles or resynchronize.
- Outlook Web App redirection allows for redirection from the on-premises Outlook Web App environment to the Office 365 Outlook Web App environment.
- MailTips, out-of-office messages, and similar features understand that Office 365 and on-premises users are part of the same organization.
- Delivery reports and multi-mailbox search work with users who are on-premises and those working in Exchange Online.
- Authentication headers are preserved during cross-premises mail flow.
- Possibility to roll back to the on-premises Exchange environment easily.