Create Distribution Group(s) with CSV and PowerShell

To create Distribution Groups in Office 365/Exchange Online I’ve created a script which uses a CSV file for input. The file must be saved as “Unicode, Semicolon separated” (;) and must contain the following fields:

Name Description
Name Name of the Shared Mailbox (this field cannot contain spaces!)
Display Name Full / Display Name
Email Primary email address (this field can contain only one address)
Alias Email alias address(es) – when using more than one: separate them by using a comma (,)
Members Specify the primary email addresses for users who will have access to this mailbox – separate them by using a comma (,)
Hidden Hide or show the Distribution Group in the Global Address List with this field (= required).It can contain only two values: TRUE or FALSE

Make sure that you give the right people (normally the IT department) owner rights for the Distribution Group(s). Because only owners can add members to a group. You need to specify the primary email addresses for the owners in the PowerShell script! Separate the email addresses by using a comma (,).

Script

Here’s the code for the script:

#### Set Variable
Set-Variable -name DGOwners -value admin@wortelltechready.com,user1@wortelltechready.com

#### Create Function Logon to Office365 - Exchange Online
function Logon {
    #### Pop-up a dialog for username and request your password
    $cred = Get-Credential
    #### Import the Local Microsoft Online PowerShell Module Cmdlets and Connect to O365 Online
    Import-Module MSOnline
    Connect-MsolService -Credential $cred
    #### Establish an Remote PowerShell Session to Exchange Online
    $msoExchangeURL = “https://ps.outlook.com/powershell/”
    $session = New-PSSession -ConfigurationName Microsoft.Exchange -ConnectionUri $msoExchangeURL -Credential $cred -Authentication Basic -AllowRedirection
    Import-PSSession $session
                }

#### Create Function Logoff Office365 & Exchange Online
function Logoff {
    #### Remove the Remote PowerShell Session to Exchange Online ----
    Get-PsSession | Remove-PsSession
    #Remove-PsSession $session
                }

############################################################################################################################
############################################################################################################################

#### Logon to Office 365 & Exchange Online
Logon

#### Ask the user for input CSV File
[void] [System.Reflection.Assembly]::LoadWithPartialName("System.Windows.Forms")
$ofd = New-Object System.Windows.Forms.OpenFileDialog
#$ofd.InitialDirectory = "d:scripts"
$ofd.ShowHelp=$true
if($ofd.ShowDialog() -eq "OK") { $ofd.FileName }
$File = $ofd.Filename

#### Create Log File + Start Logging
if ($File -ne $Null) {
$Log = $File + ".log"
$ErrorActionPreference="SilentlyContinue"
Stop-Transcript | out-null
$ErrorActionPreference = "Continue"
Start-Transcript -path $Log -append
   }

#### Import CSV
Import-csv -Delimiter ";" $File | ForEach {

#### Create DistributionGroup
New-DistributionGroup -Name $_."Name" -Alias $_."Name" -DisplayName $_."Display Name" -PrimarySmtpAddress $_."Email" -Type Distribution

#### Add Aliases
$Aliases = $_.Alias -split ','
if ($Aliases -ne $Null) {
Set-DistributionGroup -Identity $_."Name" -EmailAddresses @{add= $Aliases}
   }

#### Hide or show the DistributionGroup in the Global Address List
if ($_.Hidden) {
[boolean] $StoreBool = [System.Convert]::ToBoolean($_."Hidden")
Set-DistributionGroup -Identity $_."Name" -HiddenFromAddressListsEnabled $StoreBool
    }

#### Add Members
$Name = $_."Name"
$Member = $_.Members -split ","
$Member | Foreach-object {
Add-DistributionGroupMember -Identity $Name -Member $_
   }

#### Set Owners
Set-DistributionGroup $_."Name" -BypassSecurityGroupManagerCheck -ManagedBy $DGOwners

}

#### Stop Logging
Stop-Transcript

#### Logoff
Logoff

Copy and paste the code in notepad (for example) and save it as “CreateDistributionGorup.ps1”. Go through the following steps to use the script.

Steps

Other options you can use with a Distribution Group like Moderation, will have the default values. These can be set separately by using the web interface or with PowerShell.

This is part 4 of a series of posts about some PowerShell scripts I created or used and modified for some Office 365/Exchange Online migrations.

In part 5 of this series I will share a script which can be used to create External Contacts.

An overview of the series can be found here.

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