The branding of Windows Azure Active Directory

one ringIn a recent post I mentioned the ability to access your Windows Azure Active Directory (WAAD) tenant and see the services connected to it (such as Office 365, Dynamics CRM Online, and Windows Intune).

Slowly we are starting to see Microsoft changing the branding on more and more services to reflect WAAD.

For example where previously the directory synchronisation tool was known as the Microsoft Online Services branding – this is now known as Windows Azure Active Directory synchronisation.

Other examples would be Microsoft knowledgebase articles being revised with updated text to reflect the branding.

While WAAD has been the underpinning identity management solution of Office 365 since it’s launch – this hasn’t been the case for Dynamics CRM Online and Windows Intune the entire time as both now utilise WAAD now instead of Microsoft accounts (formerly known as Live IDs).

This marks the rise to prominence of Windows Azure as a key cloud delivery platform – be it PaaS, IaaS or SaaS offerings from Microsoft and its partners.

Over time I expect to see more services connecting in to WAAD – thereby creating a single identity in the corporate world (something that the Passport/Live ID didn’t fully become in the consumer world), ultimately being one identity to rule them all!

Viewing your Windows Azure Active Directory

Over the past year or so we’ve seen the explosion of services available from Windows Azure and the tighter integration it brings between multiple Microsoft cloud services – by way of Windows Azure Active Directory (WAAD).

While we see a commonality of users in WAAD-enabled services such as Office 365, CRM Online and Windows Intune – have wondered how they can get access to this magical Active Directory in the sky?

If you’ve signed up for the Windows Azure preview services – the WAAD interface can be accessed by browsing to and signing in with your online ID.


Upon logging in you’ll be greeted with the Modern-UI similar to that in Windows Azure preview services, as well as the Office 365 Preview.

The functionality of this particular interface is the same as what you would get in any of the Microsoft Online Services portal.



An advantage however is the ability to access the Rights management service – something that is not currently accessible from any of the Microsoft Online Service portals.

I look forward to seeing more, and being able to do more from this interface in the future.