It's hard to imagine how many different types of messaging scenarios you might have to work with where you would need to configure FOPE, but Microsoft has put together a list with both TechNet articles and TechNet Edge videos (see below).
|Messaging scenario||TechNet article||TechNet Edge video|
|Shared address space with on-premise relay (MX point to on-premise)||http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg430176.aspx||http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/edge/configure-a-shared-address-space-with-onpremises-relay-in-fope|
|Shared address space with on-premises relay (MX point to FOPE)||http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg749878.aspx||http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/edge/configure-a-shared-address-space-with-on-premises-relay-where-the-mx-record-points-to-fope|
|Internal mail flow||http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg430169.aspx||http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/edge/internal-email-control-scenario-for-fope-connectors|
|Outbound smart host||http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg430178.aspx||http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/edge/outbound-smart-host-scenario-for-fope-connectors|
|Inbound safe listing||http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg430159.aspx||http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/edge/internal-email-control-scenario-for-fope-connectors|
|Regulated partner with forced TLS||http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg430177.aspx||http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/edge/configure-messaging-with-a-regulated-partner-and-forced-tls-in-fope|
According to Microsoft, the cost per user per year starts at $20, although volume discounts will apply. With Office 365, FOPE protection is included with your subscription. Of course, you should consider what other companies are offering and at what price. You might also consider, when putting all the numbers together, a traditional on-site appliance or server product.
Just because the current fad is to host everything you possibly can in the cloud doesn't mean you should rule out the use of on-premise products. Your antispam and antivirus protection could just as easily sit in the perimeter of your organization and do the same job as a cloud-hosted product -- and possibly cost less.
Where FOPE may have an advantage is in its support for all those email flow scenarios, especially if you plan on going with a hybrid approach to your email and have some mailboxes in the cloud and some on-premise.
This article, "What's new in Forefront Online Protection for Exchange," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Read more of J. Peter Bruzzese's Enterprise Windows blog and follow the latest developments in Windows at InfoWorld.com. For the latest business technology news, follow InfoWorld.com on Twitter.