An important part of preparing to deploy Office 365 for education services is making sure that all the system requirements are met for the machines used by administrators and users to connect. There are minimum levels supported and recommended for client operating systems (PC or Mac), browser versions (IE, Firefox, Safari or Chrome) and Microsoft Office versions (2007, 2010).
Office Desktop Apps
To ensure that the Office desktop apps installed on users’ computers function correctly with Office 365, desktop updates may be required. As an admin you can distribute product updates, or automate the install of client applications or updates with managed tools like Windows Intune or Systems Center Configuration Manager. Through the Office 365 portal, users can install updates themselves (requires login):
If you're planning to deploy the optional directory sync and identity federation capabilities, your Active Directory must be a single forest on a recommended minimum of Windows Server 2008 (support for Windows Server 2003 ends January 1, 2013).
Keep up-to-date with recent Service Updates to Office 365 by reviewing the Service Updates wiki page in the Office 365 Community site: