Microsoft Whiteboard is a visual collaboration canvas where people, content, and ideas come together. Today, Whiteboard runs on Azure for Enterprise and Education customers. We’re transitioning to running on top of OneDrive for Business (ODB). This will bring many new capabilities and allow you to create, share, discover and manage whiteboards as easily as any Office document.

This page is applicable for all Enterprise or Education customers managing Whiteboard. GCC customers, please use Enable Whiteboard on OneDrive for Business admin guidance.

Manage Whiteboard Access

Whiteboard is automatically enabled for applicable Microsoft 365 tenants. 

Whiteboard conforms to global standards including SOC 1, SOC 2, ISO 27001, HIPAA, and EU Model Clauses. 

Required admin settings for Whiteboard

  • Whiteboard must be enabled globally in the Microsoft 365 Admin Center

  • In addition, isWBFluidEnabled must be enabled using the SharePoint Online PowerShell cmdlet

Note: The roll out of ODB storage is in progress. When you go to the Microsoft 365 Admin Center, the option to opt in or out of ODB storage is disabled if your tenant has already been transitioned to ODB.

Controlling access to Whiteboard

  1. Enable or disable Whiteboard for your entire tenant using the Microsoft 365 Admin Center

  2. Show or hide Whiteboard for specific users in meetings using a Teams meeting policy – it’s still visible via web, native clients and Teams tab app

  3. Require Conditional Access policies for accessing Whiteboard using Azure Active Directory Admin Center

Note: Teams policy (#2 listed above) only hides Whiteboard entry points, it does not prevent the users from using Whiteboard. Conditional Access (#3 listed above) prevents any access to Whiteboard, but does not hide the entry points.

To enable or disable Whiteboard for your tenant

  1. Go to the Microsoft 365 Admin Center.

  2. On the Admin Center home page, go to the Search box in the top right, and then type Whiteboard.

  3. In the search results, click or tap Whiteboard settings.

  4. On the Whiteboard panel, toggle Turn Whiteboard on or off for your entire organization to On.

  5. Click or tap Save.

  6. Connect to SharePoint Online PowerShell.

  7. Enable Whiteboard using the Set-SPOTenant cmdlet.

  8. Set-SPOTenant -IsWBFluidEnabled $true

To show or hide Whiteboard for meetings 

Use meeting policy settings.

To prevent access to Whiteboard for specific users

Use Conditional Access policies.

Manage Whiteboard Data

Whiteboard content is stored in both Azure and ODB. New whiteboards will be stored in ODB, the only exception is whiteboards started from a Surface Hub will be stored in Azure (this will be moved to ODB in future). Please see the tables within the Manage Whiteboard Sharing section in this article.

Azure storage overview

Whiteboard currently stores content securely in Azure. Data may be stored in different locations, depending on the country and when Whiteboard switched to storing new content in those locations. To check where data for your tenant is stored, see Where your Microsoft 365 customer data is stored

Content in Azure does not support Data Loss Prevention (DLP), eDiscovery, retention policies and similar features. Content can be managed using Whiteboard PowerShell cmdlets and over time, this content will need to be migrated to ODB or deleted.

What happens to whiteboards when a user's account is deleted in Azure

We are changing how whiteboards are stored when a user's account is deleted in Azure. Prior to the change, when a user's account was deleted, whiteboards that they own were also deleted but whiteboards that were shared with others were not deleted.

Note: Boards stored in ODB will be handled like any other content in ODB. For more information, see this article on how to set the OneDrive retention for deleted users.

Whiteboard on Azure behavior will change as of June 1, 2022. Any whiteboards shared with other users will be deleted.

If you want to retain a deleted user’s whiteboards, BEFORE you delete the account, you can transfer ownership. You can transfer a single whiteboard or all of them to another user. 

Ensure that any deletion process or script handles this change. If you are fine with the whiteboards being deleted, then no action is required. 

ODB storage overview

Whiteboards will be created in the ODB folder of the person who starts the whiteboard (SharePoint is not yet supported). This applies to all whiteboards created in the stand-alone Whiteboard applications, Microsoft Teams meetings, chats and channels. The only exception is whiteboards started from a Surface Hub will be stored in Azure (this will be moved to ODB in future).

Any users who do not have ODB provisioned will no longer be able to create new whiteboards when this change is implemented, though they can still edit their previously created boards. They can also collaborate on any whiteboards that are shared with them by others who have ODB.

An average whiteboard may be anywhere from 50KB to 1MB in size and located wherever your ODB content resides. To check where data for your tenant is stored, see Where your Microsoft 365 customer data is stored and look at the location for ODB.

Controls for ODB storage 

All controls that apply to general files in ODB also apply to Whiteboard, with the exception of external sharing. Managing Whiteboard data can can be done using existing ODB controls, see the OneDrive guide for enterprises.

You can use existing ODB tooling to satisfy data subject requests (DSRs) for GDPR. Whiteboard files in ODB contain version history of changes made to the file. If you wish to ensure that all previous changes are removed from the file, you must delete the entire file.

Whiteboard files can be moved in the same way as other content in ODB. However, share links and permissions may not move.

Controls supported today:

  • Retention policies

  • Quota

  • Legal hold

  • DLP

  • Basic eDiscovery - .whiteboard files are stored as files in the creator's OneDrive for Business. They are indexed for keyword and file type search, but are not available to preview/review. Upon export an admin needs to upload the file back to ODB to view the content. Additional support is planned for the future.

Controls coming in future:

  • Sensitivity labels

  • Analytics

  • Additional eDiscovery support

Manage Whiteboard Sharing

The sharing experience differs based on whether you’re in a Teams meeting, if you're using a shared device and what tenant-level sharing settings are enabled. The scenarios covered below apply only to new boards created after Whiteboard switches to using ODB storage. There is no change to previously created boards still stored in Azure.

Sharing in Teams meetings

When sharing a whiteboard in a Teams meeting, Whiteboard creates a sharing link that’s accessible by anyone within the organization and automatically shares the whiteboard with any in-tenant users in the meeting.

There’s an additional capability for temporary collaboration by external and shared device accounts during a meeting. This allows these users to temporarily view and collaborate on whiteboards when they’re shared in a Teams meeting, similar to PowerPoint Live sharing.

Note: This is not a share link and does not grant access to the file. It provides temporary view and collaborate on the whiteboard for the duration of the Teams meeting only.

If you have external sharing enabled for ODB, no further action is required.

If you restrict external sharing for ODB, you can keep it restricted and just enable a new setting in order for external and shared device accounts to work.

  1. Using PSH, connect to your tenant and ensure the SPO module is updated by running the following command:
    Update-Module -Name Microsoft.Online.SharePoint.PowerShell

  2. Then run the following command:
    Set-SPOTenant -AllowAnonymousMeetingParticipantsToAccessWhiteboards On

This setting applies only to whiteboards and replaces the previously shared settings, OneDriveLoopSharingCapability and CoreLoopSharingCapability. Those are no longer applicable and can be disregarded.

Note: The Teams meeting setting “Anonymous users can interact with apps in meetings” is enabled by default. If you have disabled it, any anonymous users (as opposed to guests or federated users) will not have access to the whiteboard during the meeting.

These changes should take approximately 60 minutes to apply across your tenancy. 

Scenario

Storage and ownership

Sharing settings

Sharing experience

Start the whiteboard from a desktop or mobile device

Storage: ODB

Owner: User who creates the whiteboard

Enabled

In-tenant users: Can create, view and collaborate

External users: Can view and collaborate during the meeting only (the button to share a whiteboard will not appear for external users)

Shared device accounts: Can view and collaborate during the meeting only

Start the whiteboard from a desktop or mobile device

Storage: ODB

Owner: User who creates the whiteboard

Disabled

In-tenant users: Can initiate, view and collaborate

External users: Cannot view or collaborate

Shared device accounts: Cannot view or collaborate

Start the whiteboard from a Surface Hub or MTR

Storage: Azure (this will be moved to ODB in future)

Owner: Meeting participant

Not applicable

In-tenant users: Can initiate, view and collaborate

External users: Can view and collaborate during the meeting only

Shared device accounts: Can view and collaborate during the meeting only

Adding as a tab in Teams channels and chats

When adding a whiteboard as a tab in a Teams channel or chat, Whiteboard will create a sharing link that’s accessible by anyone in the organization.

Scenario

Storage and ownership

Sharing settings

Sharing experience

Add the whiteboard to a channel or chat from a desktop or mobile device

Storage: ODB

Owner: User who creates the whiteboard

Not applicable (only applies to meetings)

In-tenant users: Can initiate, view and collaborate

External users and Teams guests: Not supported at this time

Shared device accounts: Not applicable

Creating and sharing in Whiteboard native clients

When sharing whiteboards from the web, desktop or mobile clients, users can choose specific people or create a sharing link that’s accessible by anyone in the organization. Share links for external users outside of the organization are not currently supported.

Scenario

Storage and ownership

Sharing settings

Sharing experience

Create the whiteboard from a desktop or mobile device

Storage: ODB

Owner: User who creates the whiteboard

Not applicable (only applies to meetings)

In-tenant users: Can share within their organization

External users: Sharing with external users is not supported at this time

Create the whiteboard from a Surface Hub

Storage: Local

Owner: None*

*Unless user sign ins to save and share the board, which saves to their ODB. Easy Share will be added back in future.

Not applicable (only applies to meetings)

In-tenant users: User must sign in to save and share the board (Easy Share will be added in future)

External users: Sharing with external users is not supported at this time outside of a Teams meeting

Create the whiteboard from an MTR

Not yet supported

Not applicable (only applies to meetings)

Not yet supported

External sharing links are not yet available, but will be added in future.

How to Deploy the Windows Application

Whiteboard can be deployed to Windows 10+ devices using Microsoft Intune or Microsoft Configuration Manager (formerly System Center Configuration Manager). Whiteboard is not supported on Windows Server.

  • Microsoft Intune using an online license mode — This allows you to specify groups of users who will receive access to the Whiteboard app.

  • Microsoft Configuration Manager using manual offline installation and updates — This allows you to install Whiteboard and then manually update it every 2-4 weeks.

Note: We recommend using Microsoft Intune. Using Microsoft Configuration Manager requires IT to continuously re-package and install updates to ensure users are running an up-to-date version.

To install using Microsoft Intune:

  1. Add Whiteboard as an available app using the steps in this article:

  2. Add Microsoft Store apps to Microsoft Intune

  3. Assign the app to a group using the steps in this article:

  4. Assign apps to groups with Microsoft Intune

To install using Microsoft Configuration Manager:

  1. Using a global administrator account, sign in to the Microsoft Store for Business.

  2. In the header, select Manage.

  3. In the right-hand navigation pane, select Settings, and then turn on Show offline apps.

  4. Wait 10-15 minutes for propagation.

  5. Next, go to the Whiteboard app.

  6. Click or tap the Get the app button and accept the license terms.

  7. Go back to the application page.

  8. In the license type drop-down, select Offline.

  9. Click or tap the Manage button.

  10. This takes you to the inventory management page, which will now offer the option to Download package for offline use.

  11. Choose the architecture version and then download it.

  12. As soon as you have downloaded the app, you can deploy it through Configuration Manager. To create an update package, follow steps 7-10 to download a newer version and package it for Configuration Manager.

  13. For more information, see Install applications for a device.

See Also

Microsoft Whiteboard Help

Privacy settings in Microsoft Whiteboard

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