Microsoft Teams FAQ


This article provides answers to frequently asked questions about Microsoft Teams.


What is Microsoft Teams?

Microsoft Teams is a chat and collaboration platform where all conversations, meetings, files, and notes can be accessed by team members in one place. This is an evergreen service that is continually evolving and developing. Check out the short welcome video created by Microsoft here.

How to I get Microsoft Teams?

You can get an installer for you device type at .  For more detailed instructions, follow the instructions specific to your device below:


Where can I get information on how to use Microsoft Teams?

Microsoft provides extensive on-demand training videos on their website here.


I invited a University of Oregon student to my team and they can't join, why not?

Microsoft Teams is currently only offered to faculty and staff.  Although you are able to send an invitation to students, they would not be able to accept it.  Information Services is working towards providing access to Microsoft Teams for students but there is no official date for access set at this time.


What are teams?

Teams are collections of people, content, and tools that center around different projects and jobs within an organization. In Microsoft Teams, team members can have conversations and share files, notes, and more.  You can read more about teams in Microsoft's documentation found here.


What’s a channel?

Channels are dedicated sections within a team to keep conversations organized by specific topics, projects, disciplines—-whatever works for your team!  You can read more about teams in Microsoft's documentation found here.


Which browsers are supported?

The Microsoft Teams app works in the the following desktop browsers:

  • Internet Explorer 11
  • Microsoft Edge
  • The latest version of Chrome
  • The latest version of Firefox
  • Safari is not currently supported


What’s the difference between team channels and private chats?

Team channels are places where everyone on the team can have open conversations. Private chats are only visible to those people in the chat.


What’s the difference between public and private teams? 

You can choose to set the privacy setting for your team as either "public" or "private". In public teams, any user in the organization can join. With private teams, only team owners can add peoeple to the teams. 


Can I collaborate people outside of the University of Oregon into my team?

Yes!  A team owner in Microsoft Teams can add and manage guests in their teams via the web or desktop. Anyone with a business or consumer email account, such as Outlook, Gmail, or others, can participate as a guest in Teams with full access to team chats, meetings, and files. Only people who are outside of your organization, such as partners or consultants, can be added as guests. People from within your organization can join as regular team members.  You can read more about guest membership in Microsoft's documentation found here.


Can the team members or guests leave the team on their own?

Yes. Any member or guest can leave the team at any time via Teams web or desktop clients.


How do I make sure people in a team or channel see my message?

The best way is to @mention them. Type @ before someone's name and they will get a notification.

To get the attention of the entire team, type @team before your message and all your teammates will receive notifications.


What are the tabs in Microsoft Teams? 

Tabs allow team members to access services on a dedicated section within a channel or in a chat. This lets the team work directly with tools and data and have conversations about them in the context of the channel or chat. Tabs can be added to help users easily access and manage the data they need or interact with the most. 


Are my files and conversations in Microsoft Teams secure?

Microsoft Teams is built on the Office 365 hyper-scale, enterprise-grade cloud, delivering the advanced security and compliance capabilities. Data is encrypted in transit and at rest.

Files are stored in SharePoint and are backed by SharePoint encryption. Notes are stored in OneNote and are backed by OneNote encryption.  You can read more about security and compliance in Microsoft's documentation found here.


What's the difference between Microsoft Teams and Team Sites? 

Team Sites are internal websites that can be used to collaborate with your colleagues in Office 365. Microsoft Teams is a collaboration tool that provides instant messaging and video conferencing capabilities. Read more about Team sites here.


Can I rename a team? 

Microsoft Teams teams are named starting with the prefix "o365_". This prefix is required to prevent the creation of teams that duplicate existing names in the University of Oregon namespace. A team name cannot be renamed after it has been created; however, you can change its display name. 


I deleted a team. Can I restore it? 

A deleted team can be restored by an Office 365 administrator up to thirty days after the team was deleted. If you need a team restored, please submit a ticket here


Do I still need Skype for Business?  

Both Microsoft Teams and Skype for Business provide instant messaging, videoconferencing, and audioconferencing features. Microsoft has stated that they plan on retiring Skype for Business and fully replacing it with Microsoft Teams in the future. However, Skype for Business will remain available to UO users for the time being, and the solution you choose is up to you and your department.