How to migrate tenants and licenses in Microsoft 365

Case 1 – Tenant licensing program move to CSP

A Managed Services Provider (MSP) needs to move your existing M365 tenant from one licensing program to another, for example from retail or Action Pack/Silver/Gold license benefit to Cloud Service Provider (CSP).

Solution

The following procedure must be followed:

  1. Managed Service Provider (MSP) sends the CSP reseller relationship request email to the new customer (from within the MS CSP partner portal), in order for the customer to approve it.
  2. MSP requests from the customer to send M365 tenant creation company data (company information for the creation of the new CSP tenant object). Based on this, MSP creates new CSP tenant in MS CSP distributor portal, using the existing XYZ.onmicrosoft.com tenant domain/account and assign required licenses.
  3. MSP asks the customer to enter the M365 admin portal as global admin and disable the existing recurring billing model on their subscription.
  4. MSP asks the customer to enter the M365 admin portal as global admin and cancel the existing subscription. They will have to choose “switch to other licensing program – MS CSP” as the reason. After this point, they will be credited the remaining amount on their credit card or other registered payment method.

By following the above procedure, there will be zero downtime for the customer services.

Case 2 – Tenant to tenant migration

A Managed Services Provider (MSP) needs to perform tenant to tenant migration, that is move the users, services and data from one source M365 tenant to another target M365 tenant. A tenant to tenant migration is generally a complex project and is required when a company with multiple branches or daughter companies needs to change billing location/country in their Microsoft 365 tenant. The billing country property cannot be changed after a tenant is provisioned, hence a tenant to tenant migration is needed in such occassions.

Solution

For this case, you need to choose a third party solution (e.g. BitTitan) or create custom manual/scripted solution. Microsoft also offer basic tenant move functionality from the Power Platform admin portal. As per Microsoft “You can use the Tenant to Tenant Migration feature to request to have an environment in one tenant moved to another tenant. To do so submit a support request.”

Examples of Office 365 tenant to tenant migration tools and procedures are listed below:

More details about Microsoft 365 tenant to tenant migration tools can be found at: https://stefanos.cloud/blog/microsoft-365-tenant-to-tenant-migration-tools/.

Case 3 – Leave the CSP licensing model

A customer wishes to have its existing M365 tenant leave the CSP licensing model and assume administration of their M365 tenant outside of CSP with their own licenses (retail or Action Pack/Silver/Gold license benefit).

Solution

This can be achieved by having the end customer remove all reseller and distributor trust relationships. This way they will be disassociated with the CSP licensing channel.

Case 4 – Stay in CSP management model but add own licenses

A customer wishes to add non-CSP licenses to an existing M365 tenant which is managed under a CSP distributor reseller. This can happen if the customer buys an Action Pack or achieves a Microsoft Silver/Gold partnership which allows them to use the included M365 license benefits. In this case the customer would like to either stay under the CSP management but remove the CSP licences and add their own.

Solution

Each Microsoft 365 tenant can have a mix and match of various licensing channels concurrently (for example MS Direct, Volume Licensing, CSP, MPN) stemming from one or more CSP resellers/distributors. The only licensing issue which may arise is that an end customer is not entitled to a Gold subscription if they are simply MPN partners. In order to be eligible to subscribe to and make use of software benefits in the silver/gold memberships your customer needs to be a reseller of Microsoft services or seller of their own custom (ISV partners, managed services partners).

Case 5

You have an existing Microsoft 365 tenant with an active subscription and you need to transfer only the licenses of the active subscription to another tenant.

Solution

This is not feasible by design, as described in the following article: https://stefanos.cloud/kb/how-to-transfer-licenses-between-microsoft-365-tenants/.

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